Giancarlo Stanton nearly landed a home run in a cheesesteak stand. He smoked another into the cheap seats. The Marlins’ muscle man put on a one-man power display Saturday night at Citizens Bank Park, dazzling the crowd with a tape-measure homer and a screaming liner that shot into the outfield bleachers.
But the home run that was most significant in the end was a moon shot that barely made it over the wall. It belonged to Jimmy Rollins, and it gave Philadelphia a 5-4 walk-off victory in the 10th.
The Marlins have now lost six in a row.
Home runs aside, it was an overturned umpire’s call that had the greatest impact Saturday, and was instrumental in the Marlins’ loss.
Trailing 2-1, the Marlins had the bases loaded with two outs in the second when Stanton bounced a ground ball up the middle. Chase Utley fielded it behind the bag and flipped to Rollins for the force at second.
Second-base umpire Gary Cederstrom signaled safe, and two runners scored, with Christian Yelich racing home from second to give the Marlins a 3-2 lead.
But Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg challenged the call and, following a review of the replay, the original call was overturned. Marcell Ozuna was ruled out and the inning ended. The review took two minutes 27 seconds.
“It just looked like, for whatever reason, [Ozuna] slid toward the back part of the base instead of the front part of the base,” manager Mike Redmond said. “If he slides straight into the base, he’s safe, and we score two runs. So that just seems to be the rut we’re in right now.”
Ozuna thought he was safe at the time, and still thought so after the game.
“I had half of the base with my foot,” he said.
Ozuna said he was shocked when the umpires reversed the call.
“I said, ‘Unbelievable. Oh my God,’ ” Ozuna said.
But replays shown in the press box and on the stadium scoreboard appeared to confirm the umpire’s final ruling, that Rollins stepped on the bag just a fraction of a second before Ozuna got there.
Instead of a 3-2 lead and the potential for more runs, the Marlins had to settle for a 2-1 deficit. Those two runs ended up potentially costing them a win.
It was the top of the order that did all the damage to Marlins starter Nathan Eovaldi early. The Phillies’ top four hitters — Tony Gwynn Jr., Rollins, Utley and Ryan Howard — combined to go 6 for 8 against Eovaldi in the first three innings and accounted for all of the Phillies’ runs and RBI.
Utley and Howard each had RBI hits in the third to widen the lead to 4-1.
Not even another Stanton tape-measure shot was enough to lift the Marlins.
Stanton crushed a Jonathan Pettibone pitch into “Ashburn Alley,” the concourse located behind the bleachers in center and just in front of the Tony Luke’s sandwich stand. The blast was measured by the Phillies at 470 feet — or 17 fewer feet than his mammoth shot on April 4 in Miami. ESPN’s Stats and Information Group calculated the shot at 469 feet.
Phillies fans could be heard gasping “Oh my God!” after the ball finally landed. But as long as Stanton’s home run was, it still counted for only one run and merely trimmed the Phillies’ lead to 4-2.
But Stanton wasn’t done. When he came up again with a man aboard in the seventh, he ripped a line-drive homer to left off Justin De Fratus that made it 4-4.
It marked the 10th time Stanton has clubbed two homers in a game.
The Marlins didn’t seriously threaten again after that. Nor did the Phillies, for that matter.
Once again, as they have done during the whole road trip, the Marlins didn’t produce when they had the chance. Even though they outhit the Phillies, 13-9, they went just 1 for 8 with runners in scoring position.
And with Dan Jennings on the mound in the 10th, Rollins lofted a two-out, 2-2 pitch into the first rows of seats in left. Yelich leaped to try to make the catch, but the ball was out of his reach.
“It looked like I was going to have a chance,” Yelich said. “But it kept carrying. I knew once I was out of room, that was it.”