#ASGWorthy Ozuna stays hot with home run

Outfielder also runs through stop sign to score run in game vs. Nats

June 21st, 2017

MIAMI -- Everything seems to be going 's way right now, even his risky baserunning. After racing through a stop sign at third base to score one run, the 26-year-old left fielder showcased his power in his next at-bat.

Ozuna connected on a two-run homer and scored twice, but it wasn't nearly enough as the Marlins fell, 12-3, to the Nationals Tuesday night at Marlins Park.

Ozuna continues to build his National League All-Star case, as he now has 19 home runs and 52 RBIs, while raising his batting average to .330.

Cast your Esurance All-Star Game Ballot for Ozuna and other #ASGWorthy players

The Marlins have seen the power all season from Ozuna, but on Tuesday, he also showed some extra aggressiveness on the bases.

In the fourth inning, he singled off , and raced home from first on J.T. Realmuto's one-out double down the left-field line. As left fielder fielded the ball in the corner, Ozuna kept going, racing right through third-base coach Fredi Gonzalez's signal to stop.

Gonzalez stood with his hands raised, and didn't turn as Ozuna dashed by and scored on a head-first slide.

"I had the play in front of me. I saw the guy had got to the ball when I was close to third base. I was like, 'Let me go,'" Ozuna said. "I had a chance to score. If I was thrown out, it's my fault. I was thinking I can get that base for my teammate. I scored easy because [the Nationals] saw Fredi stop, and he didn't think I was going."

Manager Don Mattingly said Ozuna immediately came up to him in the dugout to apologize for ignoring Gonzalez's signal.

"It's not something you want to have happen on a regular basis," Mattingly said. "He came to me right away and apologized. It's not something he's doing on purpose."

Had Ozuna stayed at third, JT Riddle followed Realmuto's double with a fly ball to center. So, if that sequence played out, Ozuna could have scored on a sacrifice fly.

"You don't like anybody to run through a stop sign, but I've seen it happen a number of times through the years," Mattingly said. "I'm glad it worked out. Obviously, we get the run with the next hitter on a sac fly, if he doesn't."

Ozuna also provided a big drive to left field with his two-run homer in the fifth inning, which at the time trimmed Miami's deficit to 6-3. The drive was projected at 439 feet, making it his fourth-longest home run since Statcast™ started tracking in 2015.

"At that point, he gives us that homer and gets us to 6-3 in the fifth," Mattingly said. "You're feeling OK. We feel like we can score."

On Monday, the Marlins rallied from six runs down and won 8-7, with Ozuna providing the walk-off single in the ninth.

"We can do it," Ozuna said of scoring in bunches. "Last night we did the same thing. Today, we fell short. We can battle with good teams."