Wei-Yin Chen earned his eighth Quality Start of the season in keeping the Atlanta Braves scoreless through six innings of work.
Chen struck out 10 batters, hitting double digits in strikeouts for the first time this season. He walked two, allowed five singles and a double, and finished with a 70 GameScore. He played 75-of-109 pitches over the plate, outdueling opposing starter Anibal Sanchez. Chen is now 12-15 as a Miami Marlins pitcher, with a 4.80 ERA and a 4.59 FIP. Also, he’s pretty good at home:
Sanchez, who is a former Miami Marlins rotational stalwart, earned a 61 GameScore, allowing one run on four hits and two walk-in 5 2/3 innings. Sanchez ranks sixth on the Marlins all-time leaderboard with 132 starts and with 44 victories, and fifth with 676 strikeouts. Today, he struck out two and got 57-of-98 in the strikezone.
Chen stayed out of trouble through his six innings, and tossed his last pitch with the game still scoreless. In Miami’s half of the sixth, Rafael Ortega opened things up with a triple on a 1-0 pitch. J.T. Realmuto smacked a sacrifice fly on the very next pitch to give the Marlins a lead they wouldn’t relinquish. Derek Dietrich followed with a single, but Starlin Castro flew out, and after a JT Riddle walk and an Atlanta pitching change, Austin Dean struck out swinging.
In the seventh, Miguel Rojas opened the inning with a single into right field, then Magneuris Sierra moved him over to second with a successful sacrifice bunt. Pinch hitting for reliever Adam Conley, Brian Anderson unloaded his 10th round-tripper of the season for a 3-0 Miami Marlins lead. Ortega then ground out, and Realmuto struck out on seven pitches.
The Marlins entered the ninth with a chance to shut out the Braves in consecutive games, but Dansby Swanson greeted Miami closer Drew Steckenrider with his 13th homer of the season. Steckenrider then settled down, getting Charlie Culbertson to pop out on the next pitch. Ronald Acuna struck out swinging at three pitches, and Johan Camargo flew out to Dean on a 2-2 pitch to close the books.
- Ortega’s triple was the first of his major league career. He went one-for-four overall, dropping his average from .281 to .279 and raising his OPS from .675 to .697.
- Realmuto went one-for-two, and added his team-leading 62nd RBI of the year. Ranked amongst the National League leaders in batting average for much of the season, he’s now at .282 for the year.
- Dietrich and Castro each finished the game one-for-four at the plate.
- Riddle and Dean were each 0-for-3, although Riddle did reach base on a walk.
- Rojas was one-for-three, and actually ranks tied for second on the team with 3.1 Wins Above Replacement.
- Anderson’s homer pushed his RBI total to 56 for the year, ranking second on the Miami Marlins.
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- Drew Rucinski faced two batters and finished with one strikeout.
- Conley only faced one batter, with an in-game WHIP and ERA of ∞.
- Kyle Barraclough made a triumphant return from the disabled list with a clean inning of work. He allowed a Kurt Suzuki single and struck out Ender Inciarte.
Miami is now just 5-13 this season against the Atlanta Braves, but can actually clinch this four-game series tomorrow. First pitch is scheduled for 1:10PM. Pablo Lopez (2-3, 4.42) will start opposite Kevin Gausman (8-9, 3.99).
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