The Marlins were banking on Andrew Cashner to help them reach the playoffs when they traded for him in July. They told him to shave his thick beard and win games.
It took him more than a month, but Cashner finally got one.
A win, not a new beard.
Cashner and the Marlins ended a five-game losing streak on Wednesday night with a 6-0 victory over the Phillies. It was the first win for the Marlins by more than three runs since July 30 — 36 games ago — when they defeated St. Louis, 11-0.
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It was Cashner’s first win as a Marlin following four losses.
“It’s definitely nice to get the first win out of the way, but I wish it had come sooner,” Cashner said. “It’s kind of been a struggle since I came over here.”
Cashner tossed 5 1/3 scoreless innings while equaling a season high with nine strikeouts.
On a night when both Justin Bour and Marcell Ozuna returned to the lineup, the Marlins finally got to Phillies starter Jeremy Hellickson, who had been trouble for them this season.
Hellickson had gone 2-0 with a 2.13 ERA in his four starts against Miami prior to Wednesday.
But the Marlins nicked him for a run in each of the first two innings before adding two more.
With Bour and Ozuna back, the lineup actually looked like the Marlins’ lineup from a month ago, before injuries set in.
“You forget what it looks like, it’s been so long without J.B. in the lineup,” said manager Don Mattingly of Bour, who had been out since early July with a high ankle sprain. “But to get J.B. back and know that Giancarlo [Stanton] is pinch-hittable, it’s a different feeling for sure.”
Ichiro Suzuki passed Rafael Palmeiro for 26th on the all-time career hits list with a triple and single. With 3,021 hits, Ichiro is now two hits behind Lou Brock at No. 25.
It was Ichiro’s first-inning triple that led to the Marlins’ first run.
Ozuna, who hadn’t played in a week because of a sore wrist, doubled to start the second before scoring on J.T. Realmuto’s sacrifice fly. Bour singled in three at-bats.
Martin Prado drove in three runs with double, sacrifice fly and ground-ball out.
“I can’t even describe how it feels to be back and help the team out,” Bour said. “Hopefully, we can continue on with what we did [Wednesday].”
Cashner even acknowledged the lineup. By the time the Marlins landed him in their July 28 trade with San Diego, he had never pitched with Bour in the lineup.
“We had a different lineup [Wednesday night], and it’s good to have some guys back,” Cashner said.
Though Cashner didn’t receive a decision in his first start with the Marlins on July 31, Miami came out a winner in that game. But they emerged as losers in every one of his five subsequent starts.
Cashner’s pitch count was high (102 pitches), which brought about Mattingly’s decision to take him out in the sixth. But he kept the Phillies from scoring and rang up nine whiffs, his highest total since striking out nine against the Giants on July 15 when he was still with the Padres.
“It’s a win we obviously needed from the standpoint from the way we’ve been playing,” Mattingly said. “[There’s] a tough road ahead for us. But it’s a start.”