Miami Marlins Mets

Miami, Florida – The weekend series in New York proved to be a disappointing one. The Miami Marlins stumbled Sunday, stranding 10 runners in their 4-2 loss against the Mets. Pablo López went up against ace Jacob deGrom to decide the rubber match. The righty kept the damage to a minimum, lasting five innings giving up three runs (two earned), fanning four.  In the fifth inning, López made a terrific heads up play. Rushing forward he scooped up Dominic Smith’s bunt, flipping it to the catcher Ryan Lavarnway to deny Michael Conforto the run.

Earlier in the game, New York scored two in the third and another in the fourth thanks to an RBI hit from Brandon Nimmo. The second run in the third was due to a fielding error by Corey Dickerson. The bullpen too pitched well, getting out of its own messes. Stephen Tarpley came in relief in the sixth, giving up back to back singles before beaning Nimmo to load the bases. 

After surrendering a run, off Jeff McNeil’s sac fly, Mike Morin stepped up to the mound and forced Pete Alonso into an inning-ending double play. 

The Fish lacked run production, specifically when it came to timely hitting. They loaded the bases in the second inning only to watch Monte Harrison whiff and Jonathan Villar ground out. Jesús Aguilar, who had a very good series batting .500, kept the Marlins in the game with a two-run blast in the fifth. Another opportunity presented itself in the eighth with runners on second and third but again, Harrison whiffed. 

Their struggles at the plate had the Marlins fighting from behind all afternoon, biting them in the end. They struck out 12 times and were 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position. One of those hits did not drive in a run.

Impressions

The absence of guys like Miguel Rojas was truly felt today. The series started off great with a 4-3 win on Friday. Humberto Mejía, the number 26 prospect in the Marlins system, made his MLB debut, striking out the side in his first inning. Although he was taken deep in the following frame, he already notched six K’s in a little over two innings of work. Francisco Cervelli cranked a three-run blast coupled with a Villar RBI double as the bullpen hung on to stop a late Mets rally.  

The longball killed the Marlins on Saturday despite jumping to an early lead, dropping that contest 8-4. It spoiled the MLB debut of Daniel Castano, a southpaw acquired as part of the Marcell Ozuna trade in 2017. He had never pitched above AA ball. Castano saw action in Class-A Advanced Jupiter and Double-A Jacksonville. He lasted over four innings but served up two home runs in the outing, striking out four. The lefty showed he can attack the strike zone, a definite positive.

Their winning streak was snapped at six and it was their first series loss this season. The team looks to regroup with a day off on Monday before heading out to Buffalo to play the Toronto Blue Jays. Although the series was indeed disappointing, there were bright spots. The starting pitching has been fine and the bullpen performed better than expected. Remember some of these contests were bullpen games, the Fish choosing to send out a reliever to start.

The problem lies at the plate.

Villar had a terrible weekend, going 1-for-15, striking out nine times. Corey Dickerson went 3-for-13, Jon Berti 1-for-7 with three walks, Monte Harrison 1-for-6 with 4 Ks all on Sunday. These are not productive numbers. It’s great for the Marlins to grab the early leads but there will be moments they’ll find themselves trailing. In those times, players will have to step up and build those big innings as they did on Friday. It happens, but now they’re 7-3, and in an abbreviated season with few days off, every win counts. 

📸 Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

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Gabriel Garcia
Just an avid sports fan who happens to have a love-hate (mostly love) relationship with his local teams be it collegiate or professional and also happens to be a news junkie. Mix in outstanding optimism with cold realism and you've got yourself a balanced cocktail perfect for champions.

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