Rob Brantly wore a wide grin when he collected his first major-league hit. The young rookie’s facial expression was decidedly downcast, however, when he sailed a high throw over the first baseman’s head on an ill-advised pickoff attempt.
“From high to low,” Brantly said afterward.
Brantly wasn’t the only Marlin guilty of a mistake in Wednesday’s 5-3 setback to the Colorado Rockies. Pitcher Ricky Nolasco bounced a throw to first for an error and uncorked a pair of wild pitches, including one that allowed a run to score.
But Brantley’s error in the seventh set up the go-ahead for the last-place Rockies, who are having a lousier season than the Marlins. With the score tied 3-3 and D.J. LeMahieu on first for the Rockies, Brantly threw to first in a bid to nail the runner for the first out of the seventh.
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“I saw him jump off first base, I took a shot and it didn’t work out,” Brantly said.
The ball sailed over Carlos Lee’s head and LeMahieu advanced to second. After Jonathan Herrera bunted LeMahieu over to third, pinch-hitter Josh Rutledge tripled off Giancarlo Stanton’s glove in right to give Colorado a 4-3 lead and scored on Eric Young Jr.’s suicide squeeze to make it 5-3.
The result: though he recorded his first complete game of the season, Nolasco fell short in his bid to record his 10th win and give him five consecutive seasons of double-digit victories.
MARLINS HIT TWO HOMERS
The Marlins took a 1-0 lead in the second on Lee’s seventh home run of the season (and second since joining the Marlins). But the Rockies tied it in the bottom half of the inning when LeMahieu tripled with two outs and scored on the first of Nolasco’s two wild pitches.
Brantly blocked the ball with his glove and mask but couldn’t locate it quickly enough to throw to Nolasco in time. Nolasco also uncorked a wild pitch in the first inning.
But the Marlins took a 2-1 lead in the fourth inning when Alex White delivered a wild pitch that allowed Lee to score from third. Stanton made it 3-1 in the sixth with his leadoff home run to center off Adam Ottavino. It was Stanton’s 22nd home run.
Of Stanton’s six career hits in 15 at bats at Coors Field, four have been home runs.
BRANTLY’S FIRST HIT
Later in the same inning, Brantly doubled to right for his first big-league hit.
“It was pretty exciting when I hit the ball and saw it was going to find some grass,” Brantly said. “I was pretty happy and excited to get the ball.”
But Nolasco and the Marlins couldn’t make the lead hold up.
Michael Cuddyer followed Carlos Gonzalez’s bunt single in the sixth with his 16th home run, a two-run shot to left that made it 3-3.
“Made a couple of mistakes and that’s the game,” Nolasco said. “I just left that ball up to Cuddyer. He got the important one there to tie the game and things just kind of got out of control in the seventh inning.”
Aided by Brantly’s error, the Rockies added two more runs in the seventh.
“Nolasco pitched well,” said manager Ozzie Guillen. “He just gave up the home run to Cuddyer. And then we made the big error.”