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Rookies spark Marlins in rally over Giants

June 11, 2018

MIAMI -- A couple of cornerstone rookies -- Brian Anderson and Lewis Brinson -- each came through in big spots, and J.T. Realmuto delivered the decisive two-run home run that rallied the Marlins to a 7-5 victory over the Giants on Monday at Marlins Park.• VOTE: 2018 Camping World MLB

MIAMI -- A couple of cornerstone rookies -- Brian Anderson and Lewis Brinson -- each came through in big spots, and J.T. Realmuto delivered the decisive two-run home run that rallied the Marlins to a 7-5 victory over the Giants on Monday at Marlins Park.
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Anderson added a home run, two doubles and two RBIs, and Brinson laced an RBI triple and run-scoring single in the series opener.
"We did a good job, offensively, fighting and staying in the game," Realmuto said. "We lost a lead a few times, but never really got down. Kept battling and putting together good at-bats."

Anderson and Realmuto each had three hits, while Brinson added two, accounting for all eight of Miami's hits.
"Any time you see young guys like that coming through huge for a team, getting a big win for us, that's big for the future of this program," Realmuto said. "For those guys to have that confidence and be able to swing the bat like that, that shows where we're headed."
The Marlins played catchup most of the night against Madison Bumgarner, who gave up four runs on six hits in 5 1/3 innings.
"I'm glad to contribute; that's what I want to do," said Brinson, who has scuffled at the plate and is batting just .169 in his first full big league season. "That was a good team win; everybody did their job against a tough guy, Bumgarner. It was a good team win for us tonight."

Brinson's run-scoring single in the sixth inning pulled Miami even at 4, and Bumgarner ended up being ejected after he was lifted by manager Bruce Bochy.
The Marlins fell behind, 5-4, in the seventh, but responded with three runs. Anderson had a two-out RBI double to tie it, and Realmuto followed with a two-run shot to center off Sam Dyson.
"We just kept battling," Anderson said. "They had one of their horses out there, a guy with an incredible track record. We just kept fighting and fighting, and we were able to get to him and their bullpen late."

Since throwing 7 1/3 innings in a no-decision May 26 against the Nationals, Marlins left-hander Wei-Yin Chen has struggled to go deep into games in his last three starts. The left-hander was lifted after 4 1/3 innings, and charged with four runs, when he got into a one-out jam after the Marlins had claimed a 2-1 lead in the fourth inning. Chen has not worked as many as five full innings in his last three outings.

For the second straight game, the Marlins were unable to get a hit early. The first hit off Bumgarner was Anderson's opposite-field home run leading off the fourth. Realmuto had a double and scored on Brinson's triple to deep center, which was nearly a two-run homer, giving the Marlins a short-lived 2-1 lead.
"I think it just shows the guys are playing hard," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said of the comeback effort. "We've been obviously working with Brins a lot, trying to slowly get this thing in line. It's looking better all the time. Andy [Anderson], J.T. have been solid. You're starting to see contributions like that."

Added Bumgarner: "That pitch to Anderson was a pretty dang good pitch. It was impressive that he put that kind of swing on it and drive it that way like he did."
In the fifth inning, Chen's struggles began with a walk to Gorkys Hernandez. Buster Posey reached on an infield single, and Andrew McCutchen lined an RBI double. Evan Longoria was intentionally walked, and the Giants took the lead on a balk by Chen. Brad Ziegler replaced Chen, and walked in a run, giving San Francisco a two-run lead.

"I think the main problem I've had is I've issued walks that have led to runs. That was the problem today," Chen said through an interpreter. "Tonight, our guys were actually hitting Bumgarner well. It was me, I didn't do my job well, and I put the team in kind of a tough situation. I was happy to see all the guys like Brinson and Anderson and J.T., they all hit well. I'm so happy for them. But I didn't do my job that well."
The Marlins bullpen picked up Chen, with Drew Steckenrider working around a man on first in the eighth inning and closer Kyle Barraclough notching his third save and second since replacing Ziegler in the closer role. But in the ninth inning, a key defensive play was made by Miguel Rojas, who started at shortstop but switched to first base in the eighth. With one out, Rojas ranged to his right and made a terrific diving stop on Longoria's sharp grounder. Rojas flipped to Barraclough for the second out. The Marlins defensive alignment in the ninth inning had Yadiel Rivera at third base, JT Riddle at shortstop, Starlin Castro at second and Rojas at first. All four have played shortstop in their careers.

"It's nice when you look out at our infield at the end of the game," Mattingly said. "We've got four shortstops out there. Starlin played short when he was a kid. Everybody else is a shortstop. These guys are going to cover some ground."
The last time the Marlins erased three deficits for a comeback win was on July 19, 2010, against the Rockies, celebrating a 9-8 walk-off win, per Stats LLC.
"He's a hard worker. Any time you're out there watching BP, whether it is running routes out there in center field or hitting the ball out of the stadium. I think you can always see the talent is there. When he puts it all together, he's going to be a special player. He works hard every day, and it's starting to come together for him, and it's awesome to see." -- Anderson, on Brinson

The Marlins requested a crew-chief review on Brinson's triple to center in the fourth inning, checking to see if it should have been a home run. Brinson blistered a liner that Statcast™ projected at 420 feet with an exit speed of 108.7 mph. After a 34-second review, the call was confirmed. The drive touched high off the wall in center on the yellow stripe, mere inches from being a two-run homer. Instead, it was a run-scoring triple.
"I caught that ball really well," Brinson said. "Me and Andy were joking about it. I was actually in the weight room today, and he wasn't. He went oppo, and I hit it to the deepest part of the park and hit the yellow line. But I'll take it all day long, right now."

Rookie right-hander Trevor Richards has shown flashes of being a dependable starter, but he still seeks his first big league win. Richards gets the start Tuesday at 7:10 p.m. ET against the Giants, who will start Chris Stratton. Richards has 28 strikeouts in 28 2/3 innings.

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.