MIAMI (AP) — Nick Fortes hit a tiebreaking two-run home run in the fourth inning, and Derek Jeter’s Miami Marlins closed their 11th losing season in 12 years with a 5-4 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday.
Bryce Harper doubled and walked before being replaced in the bottom of the third. A contender for NL MVP, he hit .309 with 35 homers, 84 RBIs and a major league-best 1.044 OPS.
Fortes sent a drive off off Hector Neris (4-7) into the Marlins’ bullpen in left for a 5-3 lead, his fourth home run since he was called ip from Triple-A on Sept. 17.
After ending a 17-year playoff drought in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, the Marlins finished fourth in the NL East at 67-95 in their fourth season since Jeter was part of a group that bought the team.
Philadelphia was 82-80 in its first winning season since last reaching the playoffs in 2011. The fallout of another post-season absence resulted in the firings of hitting coach Joe Dillon and infield coach Juan Castro, manager Joe Girardi said Sunday.
Zach Thompson (3-7) pitched a scoreless fourth. Three relievers kept the Phillies scoreless before Anthony Bender allowed Brad Miller’s RBI single in the eighth. Dylan Floro closed with a perfect ninth for his 15th save in 21 chances.
Freddy Galvis hit a solo homer and Andrew McCutchen added a two-run drive for the Phillies.
With Miami out of contention and Sunday’s game not having playoff implications, manager Don Mattingly allowed shortstop Miguel Rojas to run the club. Rojas also had a one-day managerial stint in the final game of 2019.
Marlins starter Pablo López returned from a right rotator cuff strain to make his first appearances since July 11. Limited to 1 2/3 innings and 42 pitches, Lopez gave up one run, four hits, struck out four and walked one.
Eddy Alvarez hit a run-scoring triple and scored on Jazz Chisholm Jr.’s single against Philadelphia starter Bailey Falter in the first.
Falter worked two innings for the Phillies. The left-hander allowed three runs, four hits and walked one.
Marlins: LHP Sean Guenther (back soreness) was placed on the 10-day injured list and 1B Jesús Aguilar (arthroscopic left knee surgery) was transferred to the 60-day injured list.