MIAMI -- The first four home runs Lewis Brinson has hit this season have come on the road and in National League Central ballparks.In the ninth inning on Thursday, Brinson finally was able to circle the bases at home. His ninth-inning home run was one of the few offensive highlights
MIAMI -- The first four home runs Lewis Brinson has hit this season have come on the road and in National League Central ballparks.
In the ninth inning on Thursday, Brinson finally was able to circle the bases at home. His ninth-inning home run was one of the few offensive highlights for the Marlins in a 9-2 loss to the Braves at Marlins Park.
Braves reliever Luiz Gohara, who earned the three-inning save, retired Brinson on a fly ball with a slider in the seventh inning, and he tested the 24-year-old again in the ninth with back-to-back sliders. Brinson connected on the second one for a no-doubt drive to left, projected by Statcast™ at 414 feet with an exit velocity of 104.8 mph.
"It felt good," Brinson said. "In the previous at-bat, they got me out on that same pitch. I was kind of looking for it there. Luckily, I got it up in the zone, and put a good swing on it. But like I said, it would have felt a lot better if we came out with the win."
It's been a rough start to the season for Brinson, the Marlins' touted rookie center fielder who is batting .172. Teams have repeatedly challenged him with offspeed pitches.
Along with his fifth homer of the season, Brinson also made a standout defensive catch in the third inning, robbing Nick Markakis of a potential extra-base hit. Atlanta had Freddie Freeman on first at the time and was ahead by a run.
"It's good," Marlins bench coach Tim Wallach said. "The more success he has, the more confidence he's going to get. You see some positive things start to come more and more. I think that confidence in him is going to get better and better."
Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.