Despite seemingly being in control of the game early on, the Marlins failed to execute in crucial situations.
MIAMI, Fla.—The Miami Marlins had another very disappointing loss early in the season. Everyone knew that the Marlins offense wasn’t going to be the team’s strength but this is bad. The Marlins had seven hits on the night but didn’t get the hits when they needed them most. As a team, the Marlins 1-for-13 with runs in scoring position.
The Marlins had their ace starting pitcher on the mound in Sandy Alcantara. The former Cardinals pitching prospect had a great outing, much like his Opening Day start against the Tampa Bay Rays on April 1. Alcantara matched his career high with 10 strikeouts. At just 25 years of age, he has moved up to 35th on the all-time Marlins career list.
John Gant: 4.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R (0 ER), 3 BB, 4 K (82 pitches)
Sandy Alcantara: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 3 R (2 ER), 2 BB, 10 K (93 pitches)
However, he ran into some bad luck. In the top of the sixth, Alcantara gave up two infield singles and then walked Nolan Arenado to load the bases with no outs. Marlins catcher Jorge Alfaro didn’t help as he dropped a changeup he was trying to frame that allowed a run to score on a passed ball.
Cardinals shortstop Paul grounded to third into what could have been a 5-3-2 double play at the plate, but Alfaro—once again—had trouble closing his mitt. Goldschmidt was able to score on the play to tie the game. After intentional walk to Matt Carpenter, Yadier Molina hit a sacrifice fly to center to give St. Louis the lead.
“Sandy was filthy,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. “He deserved better.”
Right-handed pitcher Dylan Floro came in relief in the top of the seventh. Floro got through a clean inning as he allowed no hits, no runs, one walk and one strikeouts in 14 pitches. Right-hander Yimi García came in relief for Floro in the top of the eighth. García got into some trouble but was able to escape with no runs. Garcia threw one inning allowing one hit, no runs and one walk on 24 pitches. Finally, southpaw Richard Bleier gave up a solo homer to Dylan Carlson to lead off the top of the ninth. He recorded the next three outs to keep the score 4-2.
The Marlins offense continues to disappoint as they don’t hit when they stakes are high. Some balls just seemed to die off in the outfield with the loanDepot Park roof and windows open. One of those came off the bat of Corey Dickerson in the 8th inning. What looked like a surefire extra-base hit to left center field (100.3 MPH exit velocity) wound up being a routine fly ball to center field. The xBA on the ball was .580.
Third baseman Brian Anderson was the only Marlin to get a hit with a runner in scoring position. Anderson also went 1-for-3 with a base on ball.
Jazz Chisholm Jr. continues to make an impact as he went 1-for-4 with a double down the third base line and a sac fly. A few other Marlins recorded hits but none came when they had a chance to extend their lead or tie the game. This offense really needs to figure it out or it’s going to be a long, frustrating season for the Marlins and their fans.
The Miami Marlins will play their final game in their six-game homestead to start the season on Wednesday. The Marlins will have right-handed pitcher Pablo López on the mound. In his last start, López threw five innings allowing two hits, no runs, two walks and four strikeouts.
The St. Louis Cardinals will have their young ace on the mound in the series finale. Right-handed pitcher Jack Flaherty struggled in his first start of the season as he threw 4 1⁄3 innings allowing six hits, six runs, two walks and four strikeouts. First pitch is at 4:10 pm EST.