Flying into Atlanta with their heads held high after an impressive sweep of the Seattle Mariners at home, the Miami Marlins looked to prove that they are serious contenders in the NL East against the Atlanta Braves. The Marlins were able to do just that, having three strong outings against the Braves, despite losing two of them.
Game 1: Braves Win 4-2
In the first game of the series, the Marlins sent out Tom Koehler to start the game, who arguably has been the Miami Marlins most consistent starter. Once again, Koehler did his part and pitched a solid six innings firing eight strikeouts and allowing only five hits. The only major flaw in Koehler’s start may have been a hanging breaking ball pitch to Andrelton Simmons that was smashed for a solo shot. But other than that he was dealing.
On the offensive side of the ball, things didn’t get cooking until the late innings. The Marlins got the scoring started with a home run by Garrett Jones in the second inning off of Braves’ starter Julio Teheran. The bats faltered until the top of the top of the ninth, where things got started with a Jarrod Saltalamacchia walk. He was then replaced by Reed Johnson as a pinch runner. Adeiny Hechavarria would then raech base off of a catcher’s interference call on Evan Gattis. With runners on 1st and 2nd, Derek Dietrich came in to pinch hit and lined a double to center field to bring in Reed Johnson and tie what was a 2-1 game. Hechavarria was on the tail of Johnson crossing third but stayed put in order to avoid overlapping him. Braves Closer Craig Kimbrel was able to compose himself after the Dietrich at bat, and struck out the next three batters he faced.
The game would go on to an extra inning, and in the bottom of the 10th, Evan Gattis blasted a two run homer to left field off of Marlins reliever Arquimedes Caminero to get the walk off win for the Braves, 4-2.
Game 2: Marlins Win 1-0
This match-up was a pitcher’s duel. Jose Fernandez was on the mound for the Fish and he was lights out. Jose had great control of his pitches and was able to locate them wherever he chose. It may have been his best game control wise. He had a total of 10 strikeouts by the end of the fifth inning and had struck out the side in the 5th. By the end of the night Kid K, as he is known by, had 14 K’s in eight innings of work, allowed only 3 hits, and had not given up a run, lowering his ERA to 1.99 in the process.
On the other side of the coin, Alex Wood of the Braves had a night as well. He went eight innings himself and was able to produce 11 strikeouts of his own, as well as allowing only four hits. The mere faulty inning he had came in the fourth when Giancarlo Stanton hit for a double and Casey McGehee singled to bring him in. This would be the only run produced by either team in the entire game.
Steve Cishek came into the game in the 9th to close the game. En route to the win, Cishek pitched a perfect 9th inning to get his 4th save of the year. The Marlins would win the game 1-0.
Game 3: Braves Win 3-1
Trying to close out the series with a win, the Marlins sent out hard throwing right handed starter Nathan Eovaldi to the mound. Eovaldi had himself a decent game, The only run he had given up was in the 4th inning when Ryan Doumit had singled to center field, scoring Chris Johnson from second, who had gotten on base via a throwing error by Marlins shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria. Through six innings of work, Eovaldi had seven strikeouts and had given up five hits, along with one earned run.
The Marlins had an uphill battle their way in the game, as they faced Aaron Harang. The Marlins had put up only a single run on him in the game, raising his absurdly low 0.70 ERA to a still super impressive 0.85. The one run produced by the Fish came in the sixth inning when Giancarlo Stanton doubled to score Jeff Mathis from 2nd base. The RBI was Giancarlo’s 27th of the year, the highest in the MLB at the moment. Harang would continue to dominate though, and struck out 11 batters in six innings of work, allowing 6 hits and the run produce by Stanton.
In the top of the 8th inning, Christian Yelich was able to produce a bunt single off of Luis Avilan. The bunt was able to extend Yelich’s hitting streak, which is now at 17 games, a career high for him.
The Marlins lost sight of the game in the bottom of the eight inning, when A.J. Ramos allowed a double by Evan Gattis that produced two runs, scoring Ramiro Pena and Dan Uggla. This would be the deciding hit in the game and the Braves would go on to win 3-1.
Like BPN on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/BigPlayNation
Follow BPN on Twitter @BPNsports