MIAMI -- An off-day might've been all the Marlins needed after a tough series finale in Pittsburgh. Back home, Miami amassed 11 hits -- two of which were homers by Marcell Ozuna and Giancarlo Stanton -- and held Oakland to just three knocks in an 8-1 rout at Marlins Park on Tuesday night.
Ozuna tied it with an opposite-field shot in the fourth, and after Dee Gordon slapped a two-out single in the fifth to put Miami ahead, 2-1, Stanton made sure his team never looked back. The slugger lifted a towering blast to left, a shot that was hit at a 38-degree launch angle, tied for his highest homer by angle in the Statcast™ era. It was also Stanton's first home run since sustaining a bruised right wrist in Pittsburgh on Saturday.
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"I think if the windows would've been open, that might've pushed it back," Stanton said of his 398-foot shot, as projected by Statcast™. "You know it's at least double or it's going to get robbed or whatever, so you don't really get nervous."
A's starter Jharel Cotton (3-7) lost for the fourth consecutive time. The second inning had been his downfall this season, having allowed 13 runs in the frame. This time Cotton carried a two-hitter into the fifth, but he yielded six hits in the inning, and four two-out runs. The homers by Ozuna and Stanton were a club-high 10th and 11th given up by Cotton this season.
"I felt the first four innings were a breeze," said Cotton, who lived in Miami for two years and whose brother, uncle and cousins were in attendance to watch him pitch Tuesday. "It's just frustrating that everything came with two outs in the fifth."
Cotton said both home runs were sliders, and the pitch that Gordon slapped for the go-ahead run was one the righty said he thought was well-executed.
"He just muscled it away," Cotton said. "I get him out, it's a different ballgame. Just two outs and it snowballed."
The A's never got going offensively against Marlins starter Jose Urena, who stifled them to the tune of one run on three hits over six-plus innings to earn his fourth win in his last five starts. Urena's only blip was a first-inning balk with the bases loaded and Cotton at the plate, after which he retired the next 13 batters.
"I thought that second time through he started using the changeup more and more, and I think that just slowed them down," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. "The first time through, it looked like they were having some pretty good swings at him."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Ozo goes oppo: Up until the fourth inning, the Marlins had just one hit against Cotton, a line-drive single from Ozuna. Then with one out, Ozuna blasted the first pitch he saw to right field for his 16th home run of the season, knotting the game at one. Per Statcast™, the homer traveled an estimated 402 feet with an exit velocity of 106 mph.
Bad timing: Cotton didn't drive in a run during his first Major League at-bat, but the A's starter was in the batter's box when Urena balked with the bases loaded and a 1-1 count in the second inning. Yonder Alonso, who's first among first basemen in the most recent American League All-Star ballot update, scored on the play to give the A's an early 1-0 lead.
"I got an RBI, I guess you would say," insisted Cotton, who also sharply grounded out to short in the fifth inning. "I put the bat on a 96-mph fastball, so I think I did pretty good in the batter's box today."
"I was about to throw a fastball, and J.T. called something different like a slider," Urena said. "But you know, I was ready for the fastball, and when I tried to step off, I got stuck a little bit."
A's: Daniel Gossett makes his Major League debut on Wednesday in a 9:10 a.m. PT start that will finish the brief two-game series with the Marlins and wrap up the A's six-game road trip.
Marlins:Edinson Volquez looks to win his fourth straight start and extend his 16-inning scoreless streak as the Marlins and A's wrap up a two-game set at 12:10 p.m. ET at Marlins Park.
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