Marlins use seventh-run seventh to bury Twins
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[June 10, 2016]
MINNEAPOLIS -- After dropping
the first two games of a nine-game trip, the Miami Marlins got the
reset they needed on Thursday.
Miami sent a dozen men to the plate in a seven-run seventh inning,
breaking open a tie game to take the finale of their three-game
series with the Minnesota Twins 10-3.
With the game tied 2-2, the Marlins (31-29) notched eight hits in
the seventh off a trio of Twins pitchers, snapping a two-game losing
streak. Right-hander Tom Koehler (4-6) allowed four hits in six
innings to earn the victory.
"You want to win the series, but after you've lost the first two
you've got to just basically be able to re-set, start your trip
over," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. "It starts today and we
were able to put a win on the board."
Righty Ervin Santana (1-6) pitched 6 1/3 innings and surrendered
five runs and nine hits for the Twins (18-41), who have lost four of
their last six, but had taken the first two games of the series with
After allowing two early runs, Santana settled in and retired nine
straight Marlins, but ran into trouble in the seventh with the game
tied 2-2. Miami put up six straight hits to take the lead back, and
Santana was replaced by Trevor May.
"It was a tough one today. In the last inning, I missed the spot a
couple times and they hit it very good. That's the only thing I can
say," said Santana, who struck out three Marlins. "Other than that,
it was very good. They don't miss a fastball, for sure today. And
they hit the ball the other way most of the time. That was a key for
May threw a wild pitch that brought Adeiny Hechavarria in to score,
then allowed back-to-back doubles and a single. Taylor Rogers
replaced May and allowed a pinch-hit two-run homer by Chris Johnson
before getting out of the inning.
It got worse for the Twins in the ninth when a line drive up the
middle by Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto hit Twins right-hander Phil
Hughes on the left knee. Hughes left the game with assistance from
two trainers. X-rays were negative.
"He hadn't pitched for a while and it made sense to get him some
work," Twins manager Paul Molitor said after the game. "He took a
really hard shot off the inside of his knee there. We're optimistic
as far as no breakage, at least to this point. We'll do an MRI
tomorrow to make sure. We won't know anything as far as how long he
might be out until we get a little better idea tomorrow."
While Koehler was retiring the first nine Twins he faced, the
Marlins built a 2-0 lead with runs in the first two innings.
Ichiro Suzuki led off the game with a single, advanced on a botched
pick-off attempt and scored on Marcell Ozuna's double. In the second
Realmuto got a two-out single, went to second on a balk and scored
on Hechavarria's bloop single to right.
Minnesota recorded its first hit when Eduardo Nunez led off the
fourth with a single. He stole second and was initially ruled safe,
but Mattingly challenged the call and after a lengthy review Nunez
was called out.
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Marlins right fielder Ichiro Suzuki (51) hits an RBI single against
the Minnesota Twins in the seventh inning at Target Field. Mandatory
Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
With two outs in the sixth, Koehler had faced the minimum number of
Twins when trouble struck. Byron Buxton got aboard with a bloop
single, and went to second on an infield single by Nunez. Robbie
Grossman popped a double off the wall in right center, scoring
Buxton and Nunez and tying the game at 2-2. Then came Miami's big
"Stuff like that doesn't happen often so when it does, it's fun,
you've gotta enjoy it," said Marlins outfielder Christian Yelich of
the hit parade. "That's what happens, when guys string a lot of good
at-bats together, guys put some good swings, hit the ball hard and
it was finding holes."
The less optimistic part of the Marlins offense was designated
hitter Giancarlo Stanton, who continues to struggle at the plate. He
was 0-for-5 on Thursday with four strikeouts.
NOTES: With the seventh overall pick in Thursday's MLB draft, the
Marlins selected LHP Braxton Garrett from Florence (Ala.) High
School. Garrett was the player of the year in Alabama this season
and is committed to play college baseball at Vanderbilt. ... While
visiting Minnesota for a few days, former Twins manager Ron
Gardenhire -- now serving as an assistant to Minnesota general
manager Terry Ryan -- said the biggest challenge of his new job,
which includes extensive scouting of the Twins' minor league teams,
is the travel on small planes to places such as Chattanooga, Tenn.,
and Cedar Rapids, Iowa. ... The Twins are at home for the weekend,
hosting the Boston Red Sox in a three-game series. On Friday, they
will send right-hander Tyler Duffey (2-4, 4.79 ERA) to the mound to
face Red Sox righty Steven Wright (6-4, 2.29 ERA). The Marlins
travel to Phoenix to start a three-game set with the Arizona
Diamondbacks, with left-hander Justin Nicolino (2-3, 4.37 ERA)
facing Arizona lefty Patrick Corbin (3-5, 4.73 ERA) on Friday.
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