Eury Pérez pitched his best game as a big leaguer, but the Marlins failed to score for him.
After a blowout win in game one of the series, the Marlins put the ball in the hands of 20-year-old Eury Pérez for his eighth start of the year. Going into Tuesday, the Marlins had won seven straight games at home and five straight overall. Both teams were slow on offense, but a late rally from the Blue Jays would give them the edge in this one.
Both starting pitchers were outstanding. Pérez and Yusei Kikuchi found their stuff early, racking up five strikeouts each through the first three innings. As we went into the top of the sixth inning, both teams had combined for just four hits and not a single batter had walked. The 32-year-old Kikuchi has had some comparable performances during his five MLB seasons, but for Pérez, this was special.
Pérez was able to strike out batters with all four of his pitches. His punchout of George Springer in the top of the sixth set a new career-high with strikeout No. 9.
Pérez exited the game after the sixth only allowing three hits and zero runs. He has only given up one run in his last 27 innings.
“Maybe the best start of his career,” Skip Schumaker said. “Changeup was gross, slider was good, fastball on the attack, first-pitch strikes, making really good hitters not look great today.”
Dylan Floro came in to relieve Pérez and he ran into a little bit of trouble, allowing a one-out double to Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Floro would then strike out Daulton Varsho for the second out, which brought up Matt Chapman, who already had two hits on the day. Floro came up big getting Chapman to chase a slider outside the zone.
In the top of the eighth, the Blue Jays decided to pinch-hit for their two lefties at the bottom of the order to get the platoon advantage against Tanner Scott. This ended up being a perfect move from John Schneider as Santiago Espinal would drill a double down the line and Ernie Clement would bring him in on a bloop single up the middle to put the Blue Jays ahead. Springer would then knock in Clement to put the Jays up 2-0.
The Marlins showed life in the bottom of the eighth as Nick Fortes got the inning going with a one-out double. After a Joey Wendle infield single, Jesús Sánchez would step up to the plate to face Tim Mayza with runners on first and third. Mayza got Sánchez to ground into a double play to end the inning and kill the Marlins rally. The Marlins have grounded into 80 double plays this season, by far the most in the majors.
The Marlins brought the tying run to the plate in the ninth, but Yuli Gurriel would ultimately fly out to center to end the game.
The Marlins bullpen has been so good this year. It had a rare hiccup in this loss.
Wednesday will be the rubber match. Both teams have their aces on the mound. Sandy Alcantara will look to put his season back on track and for Kevin Gausman, he will try to do much of the same as he has done all year. Wednesday’s game is an early start at 12:10.