Relievers get rocked as Miami Marlins fall to Atlanta Braves
A tight game turned into a runaway as Atlanta’s hitters teed off against Miami’s relievers in the sixth through eighth innings.
07/03/2013 12:01 AM
07/31/2014 5:15 PM
Logan Morrison fell hard on the infield dirt Tuesday night after colliding with Braves pitcher Kris Medlen on a close play at first base.
For a moment, Morrison appeared to be seriously injured.
Moments later, he shook off the pain and proceeded to play out the game.
The Marlins, however, couldn’t overcome the punishment the Braves delivered later on in an 11-3 loss at Turner Field.
The Braves scored eight runs in the sixth through eighth innings combined and used a season-high 16 hits to halt the recently resurgent Marlins’ winning streak at three games.
Atlanta did most of its damage in a four-run sixth in a game that resembled some of the losses the Marlins suffered during the first two months of the season.
Atlanta (49-34), which had not played the Marlins (30-52) since April 10, improved to 4-0 against them this season.
“We were sloppy in all aspects of the game, it seemed,” Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. “We made some dicey pitches, and we just couldn’t get a big hit early. It’s disappointing.”
Tom Koehler gave the Marlins five effective innings, allowing only three runs (two earned) on five hits, and overcame a few tough spots that could have started the Braves’ rout earlier.
The Marlins tied the score in the top of the sixth when Greg Dobbs, who was celebrating his 35th birthday, roped a pinch-hit single to score Derek Dietrich.
But the Braves blew the game open in the bottom half of the inning as the Marlins bullpen gave up four earned runs on six hits. The Braves sent nine batters to the plate starting with Justin Upton, Freddie Freeman and Brian McCann, who singled in succession to chase reliever Dan Jennings.
Ryan Webb nearly prevented the collapse by striking out Dan Uggla looking and Reed Johnson swinging for the first two outs.
But with two strikes, Webb’s effort ended in frustration as Chris Johnson lined a double down the right-field line to score two runs.
Things came apart for Webb and the Marlins after that as pinch-hitter Jordan Schafer lined a ball off Webb’s right foot that bounced away from him and toward the first-base line, allowing another run to score. Andrelton Simmons followed with an infield single. Webb said after the game he had sustained a bruise on the play and would have his foot examined Wednesday.
“I did my job and got the ground ball,” Webb said. “I wouldn’t take back any pitch I threw. It [stinks].”
Morrison hit his second home run of the season in the top of the first when he drilled the first pitch from Medlen over the right-field wall to give the Marlins a 2-0 lead.
The Braves chipped away with a run in the second and tied the score when Medlen bunted a ball down the third-base line and reached on an errant throw by Placido Polanco.
The throw brought Morrison off the bag, resulting in him being upended by Medlen as he reached for the ball and crashing hard on his right elbow. Morrison remained on the ground for a couple of minutes in pain.
“I’m sure [Morrison] will be sore [Wednesday],” Redmond said. “He seemed all right after it happened.”
The Braves took a 3-2 lead in the fourth, taking advantage of a miscommunication between left fielder Juan Pierre and center fielder Marcell Ozuna. Both appeared to initially call for the fly ball hit by Freeman and then each hesitated as the ball was coming down. The ball bounced off Pierre’s glove for an error that allowed Justin Upton to score.
“I don’t think anybody’s happy with what happened,” Koehler said. “Games like this are going to happen over the course of a season. The real key is how we respond to it.”
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