Sandy labors, struggles; Miami bats go M.I.A. in series finale.
The Miami Marlins are in trouble.
With Sunday’s 6-0 loss at the hands of the Texas Rangers, who swept the three-game weekend set, Miami fell to 58-55, losing 15 of their last 20 games.
After opening the weekend with the absence of quality pitching, the Marlins had to feel pretty good considering who they were handing the ball to. Sandy Alcantara entered with a 0.53 ERA in the two starts preceding Sunday’s against the Rangers.
Fortune did not favor him in this instance, though. Alcantara was not helped by his defense, particularly the oft-sure-handed Jon Berti, who made a pair of errors at shortstop. Alcantara’s 6 innings of work yielded 5 Texas runs (4 earned), raising his season ERA to 4.28. Nathaniel Lowe, Marcus Semien and Ezequiel Duran each tagged the reigning NL Cy Young award winner for home runs in the defeat.
Sunday also marked the third time this season where Alcantara had allowed 5 runs and struck out at least 7 without walking a batter. That ties a modern-era record for a single season. It’s encouraging that he’s been attacking the strike zone so consistently, but this approach is subjecting him to a lot of hard contact.
Opposing him, Andrew Heaney, who the Marlins originally drafted 9th overall back in 2012, would be making his first start against the club that originally made him into a big leaguer. The Fish would muster just 4 hits and 2 walks, as Heaney shut Miami out over 5.2 innings of work.
Miami’s best chance to score came in the top of 6th, where the club had runners on first and second, no outs before a Jorge Soler line drive off the glove of third baseman Josh Jung turned into a 5-4 double play, thwarting a potential rally. Exiting the game with what was immediately deemed a left thumb contusion, x-rays later revealed a fracture for the aforementioned-Jung.
Miami bats went just 3-for-25 with runners in scoring position in the weekend series.
Recalled to replace Ryan Weathers on the roster, Geoff Hartlieb made his Marlins debut in the 8th inning, his first big league outing since 2021. He would be rudely greeted by Adolis García, who launched a first-pitch, leadoff home run. It was the fourth long ball of the day and tenth in the series for Texas.
- The Marlins have now been shut out 8 times this season.
- Sunday marked just the fifth time in Sandy Alcantara’s career where he has allowed 3 home runs in an outing.
- Sunday also marked only the seventh time, and first since 2019, where the Marlins pitching staff has allowed 3 home runs three consecutive games. Miami is a collective 2-19 in those 21 total games.
- After sustaining exiting Saturday’s 9-8 loss with a right hamstring cramp, Jazz Chisholm Jr. was out of the lineup in the series finale. Chisholm has played in all of 50 games this season, missing time with two separate IL stints.
Miami will continue their road trip Monday when they open up a series against fellow NL playoff hopefuls, the Cincinnati Reds. Eury Pérez will make his much-anticipated return to the big leagues. In 11 starts before being shut down, Pérez posted a miniscule 2.36 ERA. The Reds will counter with rookie Brandon Williamson (3-2, 4.85 ERA).
First pitch from Great American Ball Park is slated for 6:40 EST.
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