Bour, Marlins top Cards in Leake's solid debut

March 9th, 2016

JUPITER, Fla. -- Justin Bour drove in two runs and Adam Conley made another strong pitch for rotation consideration as the Marlins nabbed their first Grapefruit League win against the Cardinals in Wednesday's 5-3 victory at Roger Dean Stadium.

The game was the third of seven spring contests between the two clubs.

Eight different players in Miami's starting lineup tallied a hit, including Bour, who had a pair of RBI singles. His first hit drove in Dee Gordon, who snapped an 0-for-10 start to spring with a one-out single in the third. Miami had multi-hit games from both Bour and Cole Gillespie.

Conley pitched 2 2/3 scoreless innings in his second start. He threw 26 of his 43 pitches for strikes and limited a Cardinals lineup with six projected starting position players to a single and a walk. Conley, who threw mostly fastballs, reached 97 mph in the first. The lefty said he stuck with his game plan of working fastballs to both sides of the plate.

"I'm in a tough spot, being a younger guy, it's not a sure thing that I am going to get a job," said Conley, who threw just one slider. "Who knows what the rotation is going to be? Who knows if I'm in the rotation at all? I might be in the bullpen, Triple-A starter, whatever it is. So I'm kind of in a tough spot where I'm trying to work through progressions of working my stuff for the long haul, for the season."

Cardinals starter Mike Leake also tossed a scoreless outing in what was his organizational debut. The Marlins registered a pair of hits off Leake in the 26-pitch appearance, but they had some early offensive momentum stalled when Bour was thrown out trying to score from second on a Gillespie single.

"This one, I was just letting Yadi call the game and just trying to hit the glove," Leake said. "Probably the next one I will incorporate a few more certain pitches I'd like to throw in there."

That play at the plate provided an early test for Yadier Molina, who was making his Grapefruit League debut at catcher. Molina took the throw from center fielder Randal Grichuk and applied a swipe tag of Bour. It was the same sort of play that injured Molina late last season.

A two-run blast by infielder Patrick Wisdom briefly pulled the Cardinals to within one in the fifth. Kolten Wong, who committed two errors in the game, had doubled to reach base ahead of Wisdom. Both of those runs, along with one more, came off Marlins reliever Paul Clemens.

Cardinals relievers Marco Gonzales and Trevor Rosenthal each allowed one run on two hits and a walk in an inning of work. Matthew Bowman, a Rule 5 Draft pick making his spring debut, gave up two runs on four hits in a two-inning appearance. 

Up next for the Marlins: The Marlins host the Braves at 1:05 p.m. ET on Thursday in a game that can be heard on Gameday Audio. Right-hander Jose Urena makes his first Grapefruit League start. Urena is a candidate to either start or throw in relief this season, unless he opens the year at Triple-A New Orleans. Right-hander Bud Norris gets the nod for the Braves. Christian Yelich, given Wednesday off, is expected to be in the lineup.

Up next for the Cardinals: Jaime Garcia is scheduled for his second start of the spring on Thursday, when the Cardinals hit the road to face the Mets in a 12:10 p.m. CT game that can be watched live on MLB.TV. Among the relievers scheduled to follow Garcia on the mound is Mitch Harris, who will be making his spring debut with the appearance. Harris was slowed earlier this spring because of what the Cardinals described as general soreness.