Results tagged ‘ Hanley Ramirez ’

Marlins 2010 Home Opener

GameFish is now a regular blogger for FishStripes. You can read her game recaps and other thoughts on the 2010 Marlins there.

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It was a promising night for the Marlins Friday as they opened their first home series of the season at Sun Life Stadium in front of 40,666 fans–the largest home opener since 2005.

Volstad was on and dealing through six innings. He allowed just two hits and one walk to the Dodgers, and at one point retired 11 in a row. With Chris on his game, it seemed that the most abysmal aspect of the evening might prove to be Scott Stapp butchering the lyrics to the Star Spangled Banner.

Of course, that was before the late-inning sloppy defense and shaky bullpen made their scheduled appearance.

Not many people had expected a pitchers duel going into the game, but Hiroki Kuroda was dealing as well, and put on a nice show through eight innings. He gave up just five hits and a walk, and struck out seven. The lone run Kuroda allowed came courtesy of Jorge Cantu, who has had an RBI in all four games the Marlins have played this season. In the bottom of the sixth, Cantu singled to score Cameron Maybin and give the Marlins a 1-0 lead.

Vols ran into some trouble in the seventh when Manny Ramirez and Casey Blake both doubled to tie the game. Blake DeWitt followed with a single that put the Dodgers in the lead, and with one out, Chris handed the ball over to the bullpen.

Unfortunately, Hopper was  not available.

Clay Hensley came on in relief of Chris, and it seemed as though things picked up right where they left off on Wednesday night. Hensley promptly loaded the bases, and Hanley committed a costly error when he fielded a ground ball from Reed Johnson and tried to get the force out at second. He ended up throwing the ball into right field instead, which allowed two runs to score and gave the Dodgers a three-run lead.

Next up out of the pen was Jose Veras. He miraculously escaped the eighth without giving up a run, but did commit the Marlins second error in as many innings when he lobbed the ball into center field on a pick-off attempt at second base. In the ninth, Veras walked one and gave up a double before he was lifted from the game.

When Renyel Pinto came out of the bullpen, he was met with a chorus of boos from Fish fans who clearly weren’t ready to forget Wednesday’s meltdown in New York. In response, Pinto served up a double to James Loney, and (naturally) both of his inherited runners scored. Manny Ramirez singled on a pop-up that Gaby couldn’t get to, and put the Dodgers up 7-1 before the inning was over.

The Marlins did try to stage a bit of a comeback in the bottom of the ninth. Wes Helms had a 2-run pinch hit double–his 45th pinch hit with the Marlins–which established a new franchise record. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough. 

Jonathan Broxton finished off the Fish, striking out Chris Coghlan and Cameron Maybin to end the game, and the Marlins dropped their home opener. 

If games only lasted six innings, the Fish might have a perfect record right now.

Fish <3 Fox Saturday

150758_phillies_marlins_baseball.jpgOn the very last Saturday afternoon of the regular season, Fox finally decided to grace us with a game that featured the Marlins. Boy, the national exposure couldn’t have come at a better time…you know, after the Phillies clinched the NL East, and after the Marlins had been eliminated from the Wild Card. 

But we won’t complain too much, because a Fox Saturday game appears to be just what Hanley Ramirez needed to emerge from his recent slump. Come on, we all know what a fan Hanley is of the big stage, and after getting Friday night off, he wasted no time busting out of his 0-for-11 skid on national TV.  
In his first at bat, Ramirez doubled off of Cole Hamels to drive in Coghlan, stole third, and then scored on a sac fly from Jorge Cantu. The sacrifice was Cantu’s his 100th RBI of the season, and put the Marlins up 2-0. 
Unfortunately for Hanley and Cantu, they wouldn’t last the game. In the fourth inning Hanley left with a knee contusion, and Cantu followed shortly after with a sprained ankle. Hanley is questionable for the series finale, but Cantu’s season ended when he was doubled off in the sixth.
Anibal Sanchez also seemed to be a fan of the national exposure. Or maybe he just wanted to keep up the Jekyl and Hyde routine he’s had going of late. Whichever is the case, Sanchez put in a strong performance against the Phillies. And unlike his 8-walk start earlier in the week, he was actually able to locate the strike zone Saturday. Sanchy went seven innings, and allowed only one run on five hits and two walks. The one run he gave up was naturally another *yawn* Ryan Howard home run– his 45th of the season.   
In the second inning the Fish scored a third run off of Hamels on an RBI double by [NL ROY] Chris Coghlan. Three innings and 47 pitches were all the Phillies allowed Hamels, who was pulled after giving up three runs on three hits and two walks.
The Marlins added what would prove to be a very valuable insurance run in the eighth on an RBI double by Uggla. And it was nice of Dan to drive in the extra run, because he was a big part of the reason the Fish ended up needing it. Uggla’s throwing error in the bottom of the eighth allowed Ryan Howard to reach base before Brian Sanches gave up a home run to Jayson Werth that brought the Phillies within a run. 
Brad Lidge was surprisingly not in the mood to give up any runs in the ninth, so it was up to Leo Nunez to save the game with just a one-run lead. With the help of a nice defensive play from Uggla (which partially redeemed him for his costly eighth inning error) Leo handled the Phillies one-two-three for his 26th save of the season. 
With their fourth win in a row, the Marlins improved to 13 games over .500 and took over sole possession of second place in the NL East. The win also made Fredi Gonzalez the winningest manager in Fish history. 

Recipe For a Sweep

recipe.gif1 opponent that sucks real bad

1 whole bunch of hitting 
An overabundance of run-scoring 
a pinch of real good relief pitching 
1 broom 

Directions: Win first two games of series. Mix above ingredients thoroughly. Bake at 375 for 3 ½ hours, or until Mets fans can no longer be heard in the stands. Garnish with broom. Serve immediately. 
The Marlins were once again in line for a sweep as they faced the Mets Thursday night at Citi Field, and after the bullpen blew their chance Sunday against the Nats, it was nice to see them actually execute the sweep this time. 
For the second night in a row, the Marlins had a nice start to the game. The Fish batted around in the first inning and tagged Bobby Parnell with three runs. They went on to score single runs in the third, fourth and fifth innings, and Parnell’s night was over after giving up six runs (five earned) through five.
Sean West was on the mound for the Marlins, and didn’t have his best start, only lasting through four innings. Sean gave up two runs in the fourth inning, and in the bottom of the fifth, he put two runners in scoring position with nobody out. With the Fish up 6-2 and the Mets threatening, Fredi decided to end Sean’s night. 
The Hopper relieved West and pitched two innings for the Fish. Burke allowed just two hits, singles in the fifth that scored both the runners he inherited from West. After those two runs, which were tagged to Sean, the bullpen did not allow another run in the game. 
Once Parnell’s night was finished, the Fish didn’t stop the fun there, but proceeded to have a field day with the Mets bullpen. The Marlins scored another seven runs off New York’s relievers to ensure that our brooms would not have to be flung into a closet or hurled off a balcony in a fit of rage, as they had been in Florida’s last series. 
The Marlins obviously had a great night offensively, and clobbered the Mets with 13 runs on 16 hits. Nick Johnson drove in four of those runs, while Hanley, Cody and Helms each had two RBI in the game. Dan Uggla added to the show when he went deep in the third inning for his 27th home run on the year. 

With the Marlins victory, The Hopper logged his seventh win of the season, and for the first time since they were 11-1 in April, the Fish find themselves ten games over .500. 
Oh. And thanks to the Nationals not blowing it, the Marlins also gained a game on the Phillies. Not that we’re paying attention to that. 

Marlins 4, Mets 2

There was still a pretty awful taste in our mouths from the bullpen’s botched sweep of the Nationals as the Marlins rolled into Flushing, New York on Tuesday. 

Sure, the Marlins diplomatic soundbites about “forgetting” the horror of the loss thirty minutes after it ended sounded nice in the clubhouse, but put Craig Minervini’s mic in front of a few Fish fans, and you’d hear decidedly less upbeat feedback. 

Rick VandenHurk got the start as the Fish opened up their series with the Mets at Citi Field, and he looked pretty good to start, allowing just one hit to the Mets through the first three innings. 

New York got on the board in the fourth when Daniel Murphy and Jeff Francoeur singled with one out, and a sac fly by Josh Thole scored a run. Hurk struck out Anderson Hernandez to end the inning, but not before he grabbed at his side in apparent pain. Vandy winced walking off the mound toward the dugout, and his night was over due to a stiff back after a neat 4 innings in which he struck out three and allowed just one run on four hits and one walk. 
The Marlins tagged starter Tim Redding for four runs on a couple of long balls in his five innings of work for the Mets. With Coghlan on base in the third, Hanley Ramirez jacked his 101st career home run to give the Fish a 2-0 lead, and Cameron Maybin followed with a 2-run shot in the top of the fourth that landed right in the apple in center field. 
It was Hopper who came in to relieve Hurk in the fifth inning. Hop gave up a run when Luis Castillo singled to score Angel Pagan, who had tripled to open the inning. 
The Fish had a chance to add on in the top of the sixth when Gaby Sanchez singled with Dan Uggla on second. Uggla was held at third, but attempted to score when the throw to the plate sailed past Thole. Uggla was thrown out at the plate, and that was as close to scoring as the Marlins would get for the remainder of the game. 
The Fish managed just two hits and two walks off of the Mets bullpen, and couldn’t add to their four runs. 
In the meantime, the Marlins bullpen worked on redeeming themselves for Sunday’s heartbreaker. Brian Sanches pitched a scoreless sixth, but got into trouble in the seventh when he loaded the bases with one out. He struck out David Wright for the second out of the inning before Carlos Beltran flied out to the warning track (which induced about 40,000 Fish fan heart attacks, but got the Marlins out of the inning unscathed). 
Lindstrom was up next, and handled the Mets 1-2-3 in the eighth, before Leo Nunez marched in to save it in the ninth. Miraculously, saving the game is exactly what he did. 
It was Brian Sanches who got the win, and the Fish got off to a good start against the Mets, taking game one of the series at Citi Field. 
We won’t call it redemption for Sunday, but at least it’s a start. 

Pinto, Nunez Blow (It).

blow.JPGWell if Sunday’s series finale against the Nationals had ended after the top of the ninth, Marlins fans would be celebrating a sweep right now. 

But since that’s not how baseball works, instead, fans are likely nursing throbbing headaches, dehydration and nausea due to the gallons of liquid happy amnesia they downed after one of the most depressing ends to a game in recent memory.
But let’s start at the beginning, which was decidedly less mournful.
On the three-year anniversary of his no-hitter, Anibal Sanchez had a strong start for the Fish. He struck out five and allowed just four hits and two walks to the Nationals through six scoreless innings. The problem at first was that J.D. Martin decided to put in a quality start of his own, and held Florida to just two runs in 6 2/3 innings. 
The 100th home run of Hanley Ramirez’s career put the Fish up 1-0 in the top of the fourth, and the Marlins tagged Martin for one more run with two out in the seventh, when Chris Coghlan hit an RBI single to give the team a two-run advantage. 
With two out in the bottom of the eighth, and the Marlins up 2-0, Renyel Pinto decided he was done pitching. He proceeded to give up a walk, a single, and another walk to load the bases before Fredi pulled him in favor of Kiko Calero. Kiko was unable to get out of the inning unscathed, and gave up a two-run single to Mike Morse to tie up the game.
Fish fans rejoiced in the top of the ninth when Nick Johnson played hero and hit a two-run single to give the lead back to the Florida Marlins, but the rejoicing was premature, considering Leo Nunez was heading to the mound in the bottom of the inning.
It happened really fast, sort of like a multi-vehicle crash that takes just a few seconds, but feels like it’s happening in slow motion. The first pitch Nunez threw to Willie Harris was launched into the seats, and the score was 4-3. Next, Leo gave up an infield single to Cristian Guzman. And as a grand finale, Ryan Zimmerman jacked a walk-off, two-run shot.
[Expletive deleted].

Fish Make it Four in A Row

excited2.jpgThe Marlins started and ended game two of their series against the Nationals in much the same way they started and ended game one. 

Facing Livan Hernandez Saturday night, the Fish once again put three runs on the board in the first inning. With two on, Jorge Cantu doubled to score the first run of the game, and Cody Ross followed with a two-out, two-run single to put the Fish up 3-0. 
Josh Johnson was once again not at his sharpest on the mound, which for a normal pitcher might mean trouble, but for Josh means something entirely different (like, you know, that he didn’t have a no-hitter going into the eighth inning). JJ got into a bit of trouble in the second when he loaded the bases with nobody out, but two ground balls later, JJ was out of the inning and only one run was on the board for the Nats. 

In the fourth inning, the Marlins offense jumped on Livan again. Helms and Coghlan singled, and Maybin hit a sac fly to score a run. Hanley Ramirez followed with his 20th home run of the season to put the Marlins up 6-1. 
Josh settled down after his shaky second, and tossed three straight 1-2-3 innings before he gave way to the bullpen. JJ lasted through five, and his night ended after 82 pitches, two hits, three walks and the lone run to the Nationals. 
With Victor Garate on the mound in relief of Livan in the sixth, Brett Hayes pinch-hit for JJ and hit the first home run of his major league career. Cameron Maybin followed with a walk, and Jorge Cantu doubled him in to give the Marlins an 8-1 lead. 
Christian Martinez pitched a scoreless sixth inning, but with one out in the seventh gave up three runs to put the Nats within striking distance… and to remind us that he is not exactly Burke Badenhop. Dan Meyer took over and recorded the final two outs of the seventh.
A Hanley Ramirez RBI double in the eighth capped off the scoring for the Marlins.
Brian Sanches took over for Dan Meyer with one out in the eighth, and stayed in to finish up the game. With two out in the ninth, he made things interesting when he gave up a double and a one-run single, but a fly ball to right ended the game, and the Marlins won their fourth straight. 
For the second night in a row, the Fish scored nine runs. If they can manage to keep that up, they may have a better chance at the Wild Card than HLD&S originally thought. 

Fish Win with a Baker’s Dozen

bakers dozen.jpg

Well the starting pitching wasn’t anything to write home about, but the Fish made up for it behind 13 hits and a big night from John Baker to keep their win streak alive. 
The Marlins jumped on Garrett Mock for six runs in the first three innings as the Marlins and Nationals kicked off a weekend series in DC. 
Jorge Cantu hit a two-run shot in the first inning, and John Baker followed with a two-run homer of his own in the third. But the Nationals answered back and scored three in the second inning, including two on an RBI triple from Alberto Gonzalez. Washington added two more runs when Josh Willingham went deep in the third, and West’s outing was cut short after just three innings. 
 
West gave up five runs on seven hits in his three lackluster innings of work, and allowed all five of his runs after two outs had been recorded. But it was no biggie for the Fish, seeing as Burke Badenhop is back in the bullpen… Or out of it, rather. The Marlins long reliever extraordinaire did his thing and tossed three scoreless innings of one-hit ball in relief of West, despite the best effort of the Marlins defense to put a few runs on the board for the Nats. But Hop pitched around the mistakes, and got out of a bases-loaded, one-out situation in the fifth inning to preserve the lead for the Marlins.
Saul Rivera didn’t fare as well as Hop in long relief, and the Marlins scored another three runs, including RBI singles from John Baker in the fifth and sixth innings.
Baker had three of the Marlins 13 hits in the game, and drove in nearly half the Marlins runs himself, finishing the night with four RBI. Hanley Ramirez and Jorge Cantu each drove in two runs for the Fish, and Nick Johnson had an RBI hit as well.
Other than one run allowed by Matt Lindstrom in the eighth, the Marlins bullpen shut down the Nats after a disappointing night for Sean West. Leo Nunez closed it down in a scoreless ninth, and the Fish won their third game in a row, post-clubhouse fight. (Yes, HLD&S will continue to give credit for the win-streak to the feud, until someone can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the two are unrelated.)
HLD&S would like to issue a public apology for the myriad mistakes that likely overrun the above recap. We were slightly distracted by the pathetic display Ohio State put on against Navy, and cannot be responsible for any misinformation garnered from this blog. 

And the Moral of the Story? Fighting = good.

fightclub.jpg

We’ve been told our whole lives that fighting doesn’t solve anything. 
It would appear we’ve been lied to.
A few days ago, the Marlins looked about as likely to reach the post season as I am to win the lottery this week. And then, well, a few of the Fish engaged in a clubhouse screaming match, and things have suddenly taken a turn for the better (well, things not including HLD&S’s skills with photoshop. Those have decidedly taken a turn for the very worst).
After Wednesday’s roller coaster of a win, Ricky Nolasco took the ball for the Marlins Thursday night in the series finale with the Braves. Ricky was looking to help the Marlins split the four-game series, and despite some struggles in the fifth inning, he had a pretty nice night on the mound. 
The Braves scored a run in the second inning on a Brian McCann homer before Ricky got into some trouble in the top of the fifth when he loaded up the bases with one out. The inning could easily have gotten out of hand, but Nolasco limited the damage to two RBI singles that put the Braves up 3-1. Nolasco gave up three runs on seven hits and struck out seven before he exited after six innings, down two runs to Atlanta.  
It’s pretty fortunate for the Fish that it took Braves starter Tommy Hanson 104 pitches to get through five innings, because an implosion of the Braves bullpen was in order, and his annoyingly quality start was getting in the way. In five innings of work, Hanson allowed just one run on two hits, one of which was an RBI double from Maybin that tied the game in the third.
With Kris Medlen out of the bullpen in the sixth, Brett Carroll got the fun started when he doubled to score John Baker and bring the Marlins within a run. Next, Hanley Ramirez slapped a pinch-hit single to score Brett and tie up the game. Cody Ross and Chris Coghlan both doubled in a run, and after a call to the bullpen, Nick Johnson and Jorge Cantu hit RBI singles to give the Marlins a 7-3 lead.
The Marlins would score once more in the game, while Florida’s bullpen put in a scoreless three innings to finish off the Braves. Sanches and Pinto each tossed an inning, Lindstrom closed it out, and the Marlins split the series. 
The Fish are tied with Atlanta for fourth place in the Wild Card, and if we can keep the fire going that the clubhouse scuffle seems to have ignited, things might actually be interesting to watch over the next few series.

Um, Hanley? Did you hear what Uggla said about your mom?

All’s well that *ends* well. Which is a tough break for the Fish.

Johnson-Marlins.jpg

What’s that saying? It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish? 
That’s just too bad for the Marlins, because if we were going purely based on “start” in their series opener against Atlanta Monday night, they’d have had the game in the bag.
(You’ve just read the short version of the recap, so if you’d rather not dwell on the depressing details of the latest Marlins loss, then be content with “it sucked,” and go find something else to do with the next two minutes of your life. However, if you’re into details and/or self-injury, by all means read on to savor the agony…)

With Florida and Atlanta all tied up in the NL East and in the Wild Card, The Fish kicked off an important four-game series Monday night at Land Shark Stadium. Josh Johnson was on the hill for the Marlins, and Braves starter Kenshin Kawakami took the mound for Atlanta. With their ace making the start, the Marlins had the perfect opportunity to gain a game on the Braves in both the division and the Wild Card. 

Sadly, opportunity has to be seized, and it didn’t appear the Marlins bats were up to participating in anything remotely resembling seizure in the series opener. 
JJ was on from the start, and after he handled the Braves nicely through two innings, Jorge Cantu doubled to lead off the bottom of the second. John Baker followed with a single to move Jorge to third, and Uggla hit a sac fly to score the first run of the ball game. 
One run on six hits was all the Marlins would be able to shake out of Kawakami in his six innings of work, but for a while it looked as though one run might actually do the trick, since Josh Johnson was in the mood to tease us all by flirting with a no-hitter for the second time this month.  
JJ took his no-no all the way until two outs in the sixth inning, when Matt Diaz finally singled to record the Braves first base hit of the game. Despite the hit, Josh made it out of the inning without incident, and the Fish maintained their lead. 
For like ten minutes, anyway. 
After Josh recorded two outs in the seventh, things went South. JJ’s energy seemed to fizzle out, and the final out of the inning eluded him. With two men on, Josh gave up a triple to Omar Infante that cleared the bases and gave the lead to the Braves. David Ross was the last batter JJ would face in the inning, and he singled to score Infante and put Atlanta up 3-1. 
Johnson’s night ended after 6 2/3 innings, five hits, three runs and eight strikeouts. Brian Sanches recorded the last out of the seventh, but by then the damage was done, and the Fish had a two-run hole to dig themselves out of… Um, but instead of the lineup digging the Marlins out of the hole, the bullpen worked on digging aforementioned hole even deeper. 
Sanches hit Diaz to open the bottom of the eighth, and intentionally walked Chipper Jones before Dan Meyer took over and gave up two straight singles to put the Braves up 5-1. 
The Fish made things mildly interesting in the bottom of the ninth when Cantu doubled, and Uggla drove him in with a two-out double of his own for his second RBI of the game. But that was all the offense the team could muster on a night when the Marlins managed eight hits– none of which came from their superstar. Hanley Ramirez was 0-for-4 again, marking his third game in a row without a hit. 
JJ suffered his fourth loss of the season, and a night that started with promise ended miserably for the Marlins. Suddenly, rather than lamenting the lost no-hitter, the Fish were lamenting another series-opening
loss, which set the team back farther in both the division and the Wild Card, and brought the month of August to a close at an even 14-14. 
.500 baseball isn’t going to win the Wild Card, Fish. 

Welcome Back, Sanchy.

sanchez.JPGAnibal Sanchez hadn’t pitched in a big league game since June 2nd, and he didn’t waste any time getting himself reacquainted with the mound Friday night at Turner Field as the Marlins kicked off a three-game series with the Braves. 

In his pitching debut since returning from the DL, Sanchez impressed, to say the least. He allowed just two hits, walked two, and struck out seven Braves through six innings, and had a no-hitter going until one out in the sixth. It was at that point that Atlanta pitcher Javier Vazquez was kind enough to break up the fun with a single. 

Vazquez didn’t look too bad on the mound himself, and a pitchers duel lasted through five innings as he managed to keep the Marlins off of the board. In the sixth, though, Hanley Ramirez–whose personal hit streak reached 16 games earlier in the night–drove in a run and put the Marlins up 1-0 over the Braves. 
In the seventh, things got worse for Vazquez. Jeremy Hermida took him deep to start the inning, then Wes Helms doubled, and with two out, Ross Gload drove Wes in with an RBI single. Hanley Ramirez followed with his third hit and third RBI of the night, a two-run shot that gave the Fish a 5-0 lead. 

A shutout of the Braves would’ve been swell, but Adam LaRoche had other ideas, which included taking Dan Meyer deep in the bottom of the inning, and cut the Marlins lead to two runs. 
And then came the rain…two-and-a-half hours of it. Thankfully, Marlins fans are perfectly used to that, and as a special treat got to enjoy the new “Inside the Marlins” episode featuring Josh Johnson. As much as we all love Andre Dawson, with all the rain that has plagued us this season, Fish fans pretty much know Dawson’s episode by heart.
When the rains finally dissipated, I was asleep. But from what I can tell from the box score and several text messages from friends who were watching the game, Leo Nunez came in to pitch the ninth, and recorded two outs before giving up a single that Adam Laroche tried to stretch into a double. Cody Ross gunned down LaRoche at second for the final out, and Anibal Sanchez earned his first win since mid-April.   
The Fish are once again three games behind the Rockies in the Wild Card, and 5 ½ games behind Philadelphia in the NL East. 
Welcome back, Sanchy. More of the same next time, please.
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