The Marlins enter week five of the simulated 2020 campaign at 9-15, in last place in the National League Eastern Division.
Nobody expects the Miami Marlins to compete for a division title, but I’d like to think they could at least manage to avoid last place. Of all teams to entertain that option, I’d expect the Washington Nationals least, but here we are. The Marlins sit a half-game ahead of the Nationals as they near their first month of baseball.
Marlins 3, Mets 1
Caleb Smith outdueled two-time defending National League Cy Young Award winner Jacob deGrom, pushing his record to 3-1 for the season. He struck out seven in 7 1/3 innings, allowing one run on three hits and zero walks.
Brian Anderson hit his fourth home run of the season, a two-run shot in the sixth to give the Marlins a two-run cushion. The game had been tied since the third, when Smith knocked in Jon Berti with a single. The Mets got on the board first, with a Willson Ramos RBI-single in the second inning.
The win for Miami gave them a two-games-to-one edge in the three-game set. Now it’s off to the Cardinals for three games in St. Louis.
Cardinals 3, Marlins 2
Sandy Alcantara went down in defeat for the sixth time in six games, but for the first time notched a “quality start” in his effort. He struck out four and gave up three runs in 6 2/3 innings on six hits and a walk. It dropped his ERA to a still-nightmarish 9.72 for the season. A seasonal regression — just to the mean — will require a Koufax-esque final five months. Still, Alcantara’s effort was encouraging, despite his 0-6 record.
St. Louis starter John Flaherty, meanwhile, struck out a dozen in eight three-hit innings for the win. Matt Joyce collected half of the Marlins four overall hits, with a single and a double. Corey Dickerson went deep for the fifth time this season with a two-run seventh inning shot to account for all of Miami’s runs.
Marlins 4, Cardinals 3
Miguel Rojas hit a go-ahead, two-out double in the ninth inning to give the Miami Marlins their final lead of the game.
Jordan Yamamoto gave up two runs on seven hits and a pair of walks, striking out four in 5 1/3 innings for no decision. Jonathan Villar was two-for-four with a two-run double. Jesus Aguilar added a pinch-RBI-double to knock in Rojas for some ninth inning insurance. Brandon Kintzler pitched a clean eighth inning for the decision.
RHP Chris Archer was dealt from the Pittsburgh Pirates to the Washington Nationals for a quartet of mostly young minor league prospects.
Cardinals 3, Marlins 2
Pablo Lopez did everything possible to guarantee a Miami Marlins victory, holding the Cardinals to no runs on two hits while striking out eight over as many innings. Ryne Stanek came in for the save, and gave up a three-run, two-out walk-off home run.
Offensively, Corey Dickerson was three-for-four with a pair of doubles, Garrett Cooper collected a pair of hits, and Jonathan Villar also collected a double for the cause. Brian Anderson and Isan Diaz had one RBI each for the Marlins.
The Marlins sent Jordan Yamamoto to the Triple-A Wichita Wind Surge and called up Elieser Hernandez in his place on the roster.
An off day for the Marlins as they prepare for another three-game set with the Mets. In transactional news, the major league team called up recent free agent acquisition, 33-year-old center fielder Peter Bourjos. They optioned second baseman Isan Diaz down in his place.
Mets 3, Marlins 1
Matt Harvey struck out four and didn’t walk any Mets in his return to New York, but he took the loss and surrendered three earned runs on 10 hits in 6 1/3 innings. Harvey helped tie the game in the third when he came home on a Jonathan Villar RBI-double.
The 1-1 score held until the top of the sixth, when Dominic Smith hit a two-run homer off Harvey to set what would remain the score until the final pitch. It was Harvey’s first loss since joining the Miami Marlins.
Marlins 10, Mets 3
The Marlins relied on a ridiculous eight-run eighth inning to top the Mets with 13,836 in the house at Marlins Park on a Wednesday night. Caleb Smith tossed a quality start and a no decision, striking out six in 6 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on three hits and two walks. Tommy Eveld earned the victory despite allowing three baserunners in 1 1/3 innings, and Trevor Rogers tossed a clean ninth in a non-save situation.
The Marlins scored their 10 runs on only nine hits, and only Miguel Rojas finished with more than one, with a single and a double. Jonathan Villar went deep for the third time in 2020, and also stole his ninth base. Matt Joyce, Corey Dickerson, and Villar collected two RBI each in the win.
Marlins BNN (fictional Baseball News Network) Pipeline
Sixto Sanchez 1-0, 1.86 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, Wichita
J.J. Bleday .261/.378/.449, 3 HR, 1 SB, High-A Jupiter Hammerheads
Jazz Chisholm .258/.356/.548, 5 HR, Double-A Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp
Jesus Sanchez .221/.280/.284, 1 HR, Shrimp
Edward Cabrera 1-1, 1.57 ERA, 0.91 WHIP, Shrimp
Trevor Rogers 2-0, 3.32 ERA, 1.32 WHIP, Marlins
Jose Devers .309/.356/.358, 2 SB, Hammerheads
Braxton Garrett 4-0, 1.44 ERA, 0.76 WHIP, Shrimp
Nick Neidert 3-1, 3.15 ERA, 1.10 WHIP, Shrimp
Lewin Diaz .273/.333/.473, 2 HR, Surge
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Minors: Combined 47-30
Wichita Wind Surge, 13-7, second place in AC South, four games behind San Antonio Missions.
Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp, 10-9, second place in South, 2 1/2 games behind Montgomery Biscuits.
Jupiter Hammerheads 12-7, second place in FSL South, two games behind Charlotte Stone Crabs.
Clinton LumberKings 12-7, second place in ML West, two games behind Peoria Chiefs.
Now at 12-18, the Miami Marlins are still just a half game ahead of the last-place Washington Nationals for the National League East basement. THey’re also just seven games behind the division leading Mets, who’ll they’ll finish their three-game set against tomorrow, Thursday, April 30th. They’ll then play three games at home versus the Pirates and another three versus the Milwaukee Brewers.