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Urena gets long-awaited 1st win as Fish top Cards

June 5, 2018

ST. LOUIS -- This time, the Marlins sealed the deal for Jose Urena. In his 13th start, Miami's Opening Day starter recorded his first win.Brian Anderson belted a two-run homer and had three RBIs, while JT Riddle added a solo shot in the Marlins' 7-4 win against the Cardinals at

ST. LOUIS -- This time, the Marlins sealed the deal for Jose Urena. In his 13th start, Miami's Opening Day starter recorded his first win.
Brian Anderson belted a two-run homer and had three RBIs, while JT Riddle added a solo shot in the Marlins' 7-4 win against the Cardinals at Busch Stadium on Tuesday.
The Marlins snapped their season-long six-game losing streak, and Urena improved to 1-7. In his previous start, on May 30 at the Padres, the Marlins let a one-run lead in the ninth inning slip away in a 3-2 loss on a night the right-hander was in line for the win.
"It's good to get Jose on the board, honestly," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. "He's pitched pretty good [this year]. Tonight, it seemed like one of those nights he didn't have his great stuff, but he hung in there enough, and the boys were swinging the bats a little bit, so it ended up being big for him."

Although Urena didn't have his best stuff, giving up four runs in five innings, he did enough to preserve the lead. Miami had lost all 12 of his previous starts this year, and his last 14 dating back to his last win, which was Sept. 20, 2017, against the Mets.
"It felt good," Urena said. "We tried to put everything together. It was a good job from the boys tonight. My teammates, they gave me a lot of support."
Kyle Barraclough, recently switched to closer, recorded his first save in that role and his second of the season.

The seven runs were the most the Marlins have scored in a Urena start. His previous high of support, while he was in the game, was four. Entering Tuesday, Urena had received 2.86 runs of support per game, which ranked the lowest of all National League starters with at least 12 games started.
"We were able to put some runs on the board," Mattingly said. "We had the off-day [Monday], and guys bounced back today, they seemed ready to play. It was good to see."

The Marlins scratched out two runs in four innings off Cardinals right-hander Carlos Martinez, who made his first start since May 8. Martinez had been on the disabled list with a right lat strain.
"I think everyone kind of had the piece of the pie there," Anderson said. "It was nice to get a win for Jose. He's been grinding for us. He's a horse out there. To be able to get one for him was awesome, especially the way we did it, as a team."

Going deep: The Marlins relied on the long ball to stay out in front. Anderson, who hadn't homered since April 30 against the Phillies, connected on a two-run, opposite-field drive to right in a three-run fifth inning off Preston Guilmet, giving Miami a 5-2 lead.
"I think that's something I pride myself on, to be able to use the whole field," Anderson said. "I'm not going to sit here and say I'm going to hit opposite-field home runs all the time, but I'm definitely trying to let the ball get deep and use the whole field. If the ball goes out, great."
Riddle homered off Austin Gomber to lead off the sixth. It was the left-handed-hitting shortstop's second home run of the season. His first was an inside-the-park liner at San Diego earlier this road trip.
"That one felt good, to not have to run around the bases as hard," Riddle said. "It felt good. I felt I had been missing some balls and getting into some tough counts, and it's good to square one up at a big time in the game."
Riddle's home run was the fifth of his career, and the first off a left-hander.
Derek Dietrich, who had two hits and scored two runs, made a running, sliding catch in the first and turned it into a double play. It was a big early play after Matt Carpenter led off with a single off Urena. Jose Martinez lifted a fly ball to short left field, Dietrich charged, made his sliding catch and threw Carpenter out at first base, completing the double play.

"For everybody here, we need to win games. It's fun when you win, and it doesn't matter how you do it. When you win, everything looks bigger. It's good. It's a boost of energy." -- Marlins third baseman Miguel Rojas, on snapping six-game skid
Urena may not have had his best stuff, but the right-hander executed his finest pickoff move. As the Cardinals threatened in the fifth, closing the gap to 5-4, Urena picked Tommy Pham off third base. St. Louis had runners on second and third with one out, before Rojas put the daring pickoff play on, which caught Pham easily.
"That's something we have in the back pocket," Rojas said. "We don't run those kinds of plays every day, but we're trying to keep it for a special moment in the game, an important moment. All the credit to Jose, to be pitching and trying to get guys out, but be aware of the situation, too, and catch a sign and execute the play. It's not easy. At that moment, you're just trying to get the guy out at the plate, and we're happy to catch that guy sleeping there."

"It was a very unique pickoff play that caught us off," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "It's a big spot there, too. We have baserunners who want to be very aggressive, score on contact. That's not a play we see very often, and it's not easy to pull off. But they executed, and it couldn't have come at a better time for them."
In the middle game of their three-game series at St. Louis, the Marlins are sending Wei-Yin Chen (1-3, 6.10 ERA) to the mound, and the Cardinals are going with rookie Jack Flaherty (2-1, 2.62) on Wednesday at 8:15 p.m. ET. After winning his first start of the season on April 28, Chen went 0-3 with a 7.01 ERA in six May starts.

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