MIAMI -- Manager Don Mattingly spoke on Tuesday afternoon about the importance of his young squad facing teams in contention in ballparks filled with energy. Although the Marlins are in last place in the National League East, they still have a chance to influence the standings for clubs chasing the
MIAMI -- Manager Don Mattingly spoke on Tuesday afternoon about the importance of his young squad facing teams in contention in ballparks filled with energy. Although the Marlins are in last place in the National League East, they still have a chance to influence the standings for clubs chasing the postseason, like the Yankees.
A few hours later, in front of an enthusiastic crowd of 26,275, the Marlins went toe-to-toe with one of the elite teams in the Majors. But they squandered two late chances to celebrate in walk-off style, and given extra opportunities, the Yankees broke through on Miguel Andujar's sacrifice fly in the 12th inning and defeated Miami, 2-1, at Marlins Park.
After the Marlins twice were unable to score with bases loaded late, the Yankees rallied off Javy Guerra in the 12th. With one out and the bases full, Andujar lifted a fly ball to left, scoring Kyle Higashioka, who led off with a single.
"I think execution in those situations [is critical]," Mattingly said of the wasted chances. "I think some of that is lack of experience, honestly. You've got to give them credit; they had to make pitches."
Miami went 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position, left 10 on base and fell to 8-5 this season in extra-innings games.
"We always talk to our guys about, 'That guy's in trouble, and not you,'" Mattingly said. "If you have a guy on the ropes, you always have to turn the narrative. You always want to do it. But he's the one in trouble, not you."
The game didn't end smoothly for the Yankees, as closer Albertin Chapman -- after walking Isaac Galloway and falling behind Rafael Ortega, 1-0 -- exited alongside the Yankees' trainer with a left knee injury. Tommy Kahnle replaced the hard-throwing lefty and worked a clean frame to notch his first save of the season. The game ended unconventionally, with Galloway thrown out trying to steal second. Miami challenged the call, and after a replay review, the call was confirmed.
"[Galloway] is pretty much on his own, unless we take it off," Mattingly said of the steal sign. "Felt like he got a pretty good jump on the one before. Just trying to get him into scoring position."
In the 11th inning off A.J. Cole, the Marlins loaded the bases with no outs and came away empty when pinch-hitter Yadiel Rivera bounced to short and Brian Anderson was thrown out at home. JT Riddle then struck out, and Magneuris Sierra lifted a soft foul pop to third for the final out.
"All I have to do is hit a fly ball, and the game is over," Riddle said. "Things have been going pretty well for me. To get in that situation, I let everybody down."
The Marlins were in a similar spot in the ninth inning but were turned away by Chad Green. All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto walked to open the inning, and he advanced to third on Anderson's single to right. But Green struck out Derek Dietrich on nine pitches, and Starlin Castro was intentionally walked to load the bases. Austin Dean struck out, and with two outs, Riddle bounced a grounder to second, the Yankees completing the forceout at second.
"I definitely had an opportunity to win the game," Dean said. "A little jitters, at first. I was trying to get myself a good pitch to hit. I kind of chased one up. It was unfortunate."
Both starters worked six innings, allowing one run. Miami rookie Pablo Lopez minimized damage effectively, giving up seven hits while striking out four. Masahiro Tanaka yielded one run on four hits with a walk and four strikeouts.
The Marlins pulled even in the fifth inning on Dean's leadoff home run. It was the rookie's second homer in five games since being called up from Triple-A New Orleans, and it was a no-doubt blast on Tanaka's first pitch of the inning. Per Statcast™, the home run was projected at 410 feet, with an exit velocity of 102.2 mph.
"It was pretty cool," Dean said. "I was just looking for a fastball right there. At first, I didn't think I got it. I was running to first saying, 'Get up! Get up! Get up!' It finally did. So that was pretty cool."
The overriding theme of the series is the return of Giancarlo Stanton to Miami. A four-time All-Star and the reigning National League Most Valuable Player Award winner, Stanton was playing at Marlins Park for the first time since being dealt to New York in December.
Batting second, Stanton received a standing ovation before his first at-bat, and the slugger responded by waving his helmet to the crowd and the Marlins' dugout. Stanton then did what he is known to do, smacking the baseball with amazing force. His single to left had an exit velocity of 117.3 mph, according to Statcast™.
The Yankees grabbed their first lead in the fourth inning on Neil Walker's RBI single. But Lopez averted more trouble in the inning, working out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam.
"Definitely, the atmosphere felt very different today," Lopez said. "It was really exciting -- the adrenaline, the heart is racing -- but you also have to learn how to control that, and control your emotions and stay within yourself. When it's time to look at the signs, just focus, take a deep breath and execute."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Guerra got himself into a bind in the 12th inning by allowing a single to Higashioka, followed by a walk to Brett Gardner. The right-hander struck out Stanton, but a big moment in the inning came when he struck Aaron Hicks with a pitch to load the bases with one out. That set up Andujar's sacrifice fly.
Guerra felt he executed some pitches against Andujar, and he noted that if he had elevated a little more the pitch that was lifted for a sacrifice fly, he may have gotten a strikeout.
"It's a tough one," Guerra said. "Guys battled. They threw amazing tonight, everyone. Overall, I let us down. We'll go out there tomorrow and get it again."
Ortega singled in the fourth inning, extending his hitting streak to a career-long six games.
YOU GOTTA SEE THIS
Tayron Guerrero brought the heat in the seventh inning. The right-hander struck out three, including Stanton swinging through a 101.1-mph fastball. Guerrero allowed an infield single to Gardner that deflected off the pitcher, but he didn't mess around, throwing 14 pitches at 100 mph or higher in the inning. His hardest pitch of the inning was 102.1 mph.
HE SAID IT
"Austin's getting an opportunity, and we're going to get a chance to look at him through the course of the end of the season. Again, he's a guy who has had a career year, as far as working his way through Double-A and Triple-A, and now here. We're seeing some good things. It's that time for us; he's going to get a good look." -- Mattingly on Dean getting his chances to play
Marlins rookie Trevor Richards (3-7, 4.28 ERA), who has impressed with his poise as well as his plus changeup, gets another tough challenge on Wednesday, when he faces Stanton and the Yankees in the series finale at 7:10 p.m. ET at Marlins Park. Lance Lynn (8-8, 4.68) gets the nod for New York.
Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.