Wei-Yin Chen rang up seven Blue Jays in his best major league performance of his seven-season major league career. The five-run ninth inning lead proved enough for the Miami Marlins bullpen to finish it up.
Chen finished with a GameScore of 86, the highest mark since making the majors in 2012 with the Baltimore Orioles. He lasted eight innings and allowed one run on three hits and zero walks, putting 74-of-107 pitches over the plate for a 69.2 percent strike rate. The victory pushed his record to 6-9 for this season, with a 4.64 ERA. He’s now 13-15 since joining the National League.
JT Riddle led off the game with a double, Lewis Brinson followed with a single, and J.T.Realmuto loaded the bases by drawing a walk. Brian Anderson‘s sacrifice fly opened the scoring. In the third, Realmuto went deep for the 18th time this season for a 2-0 Miami Marlins lead.
In the fifth, Chen opened with a single, his fifth hit this season and sixth of his career. Riddle walked and Brinson flew out, then Realmuto loaded the bases with a single into left field. Anderson drew a walk to force in Chen, then Martin Prado cleared the bases with a three-run double into left field. Prado also made a game-changing play at first base in his first start there since 2012.
Justin Smoak added his second ninth-inning homer in as many nights, a two-run shot to get the Jays within three. It was his 23rd home run of the season.
- Riddle went two-for-three for his 15th multi-hit game of the season. He currently has 31 RBI, matching last seasons’ total, but did not collect one today.
- Realmuto was two-for-three and also drew a walk. He now has hits in his last five games, and tonight was his 30th multi-hit game of the season.
- After going 0-for-4, Austin Dean now has just two hits in his last 27 plate appearances.
- Prado’s three RBI brings his seasonal total to 18. He ties Adeiny Hechavarria in 29th on the all-time Florida/Miami Marlins list with 168 RBI.
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After Kyle Barraclough and Drew Steckenrider combined to lose a four-run ninth inning lead in Friday’s game, Miami Marlins manager Don Mattingly may have felt some trepidation in trusting the bullpen with another lead. Tayron Guerrero relieved Chen for the ninth inning with a five-run lead.
Lourdes Gurriel opened the frame with a single. After Travis grounded out, Guerrero allowed Smoak’s home run. Grichuk and Pillar flew out to end the game.
At 1:10PM EDT, the Marlins will try to claim the three-game series. Sean Reid-Foley (0-2, 8.68) will get the start for Toronto. Jeff Brigham will make his first ever major league appearance, becoming the 566th player to appear with the franchise in a regular season game.
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