Eury continues to shine, Davis provides pop, and late insurance drives Fish to series victory.
Marlins win, Pirates win, Marlins win….Marlins win.
On Sunday, the Marlins looked to rookie phenom Eury Pérez to prevent the slumping Pirates from stealing another game from them. It took Pérez and the Fish just 2 hours and 7 minutes to do just that, beating Pittsburgh 2-0. With the victory, Miami improves 11 games over .500 at 45-34, taking 3 of 4 in the series, completing a 4-3 home stand.
Tying his career highs with 9 strikeouts and 6 innings pitched, Pérez lowered his season ERA to a mere 1.34. After his latest gem Sunday, Pérez has not allowed a run in his last 21 innings pitched.
“I didn’t think he had his best stuff today, which is crazy to say when he goes 6 scoreless,” said manager Skip Schumaker.
“When you have a pitch that’s not working, you have to go out and there go to the next one. My fastball and changeup were not working at the beginning of the game, but my slider was working, so I relied on that pitch,” noted Pérez postgame.
“When you look at the pitch package he has, that plays no matter where you are. He throws strikes and bares down when he needs to bare down, he has all of the ingredients he has to pitch how he has,” said Nick Fortes, whose caught all 9 of Pérez’s starts since coming to the big leagues.
With 83 pitches through the top of the 6th, some surmised it feasible to see him start the 7th – though, with an expected innings-limit set to hit later in the season – manager Skip Schumaker aired on the side of caution, replacing Pérez with Steven Okert to start the 7th.
The first of Miami’s 2 runs came in the bottom of the 3rd when center fielder Jonathan Davis deposited a hanging slider from Johan Oviedo—who pitched 7 innings of 1-run ball of his own—into the left field seats for his second home run of the season. Since playing in his first game with the club on May 23, the Marlins are 21-10.
Oviedo would stymie the Marlins bats for the remainder of his afternoon, allowing just 2 hits after the Davis home run.
With Puk warming in the bottom of the 8th, Bryan De La Cruz‘s third hit of the day, a double down the left field line, ultimately turned into Miami’s much-needed insurance run when Yuli Gurriel drove him in on a single to right. Looking to take the extra base, Gurriel would be thrown out by the right fielder Davis to end the threat and send the game to the 9th.
Facing the 4-5-6 hitters in Pittsburgh’s lineup, Puk needed all of just 9 pitches to set down the side in order to improve Miami’s record to 16-7 in June.
- Since 1901, Eury Pérez’s 8 runs allowed are the fewest by any pitcher in their first 9 career starts (min. 40 IP).
- .400 Watch: Going 1-for-4 Sunday, Luis Arraez saw his batting average dip from .401 to .399.
- In 23 games dating back to May 2, Andrew Nardi has allowed just 2 earned runs over a span of 22 IP (0.82 ERA). In that span, hitters have managed to hit just .192 (15-for-78) against him.
- The Marlins became the National League’s quickest team to reach 25 home wins this season.
With no baseball slated for Monday, Miami will travel to Boston where they’ll begin a three-game set against the Red Sox. Sandy Alcantara (2-6, 5.08 ERA) will make his second career start against Boston. In his lone start against them in 2020, Alcantara worked 6-innings of 1-run ball, but would take the loss for his efforts. The Red Sox will counter with Garrett Whitlock (4-2, 4.50 ERA). First pitch from Fenway Park is slated for 7:10 EST.