Miami Marlins

The Miami Marlins ride two big innings to avoid a sweep against the Los Angeles Dodgers

For one day, for one game, the Miami Marlins got the better of the National League’s top team.

The Marlins scored 11 runs in a two-inning flurry and held off a pair of rally attempts to defeat the Los Angeles Dodgers 13-7 on Thursday to avoid a three-game sweep and close out a seven-game homestand. Miami (45-75) had lost its other five games against the Dodgers (81-42) this year by a combined 45-9 score, including a 15-1 loss on Tuesday and 9-1 loss on Wednesday.

And it took a collective effort for the Marlins to take down the Dodgers.

Brian Anderson, Starlin Castro, Jorge Alfaro and Lewis Brinson all drove in three runs in the win. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it is the first time that the Marlins had at least four players with at least three RBI in a game since July 5, 2006, against the Washington Nationals.

Anderson finished with three hits, including a pair of doubles. Alfaro had his first three-hit game since July 6. Jon Berti scored all three times he reached base.

Each of the Marlins’ first eight hitters reached base in a six-run fifth to turn a 2-1 lead into an 8-1 advantage. Two-run doubles by Anderson and Brinson bookended the scoring. RBI singles from Castro and Alfaro rounded out scoring in the frame.

The Dodgers responded with two home runs against Jose Quijada in the top of the sixth — a two-run homer from Max Muncy and solo shot from Corey Seager — to cut Miami’s lead to 8-4 before the Marlins tacked on five more runs in the bottom half of the inning. Cody Bellinger, a frontrunner to be the NL’s Most Valuable Player, belted out his 40th home run of the year in the seventh against Austing Brice to push the Dodgers back within six runs. Jarlin Garcia and Adam Conley threw 2 1/3 shutout innings after that to seal the win.

Caleb Smith had a no-hitter through four innings before giving up a leadoff home run to Kyle Garlick in the fifth. Smith exited the game following that inning after throwing 106 pitches (59 strikes) but earned his team-leading eighth win of the year.

The Dodgers hit 14 home runs over the three-game series.

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Injury updates

Both outfielder Cesar Puello (left hip flexor strain) and shortstop Miguel Rojas (right hamstring strain) are making considerable progress with their rehab.

Puello was seen pregame Wednesday running sprints in the outfield while Rojas stretched and jogged with the team as he resumes baseball activities.

Puello went on the 10-day injured list on Aug. 5 after tweaking his hip against the Tampa Bay Rays. He’s hitting .248 this season in 44 games, the last 32 of which came with the Marlins after starting the year with the Los Angeles Angels.

“He’s feeling better,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. “Hopefully we get him going and get him playing a little bit.”

Rojas injured his hamstring running to first base against the Mets on Aug. 6. He is having a career year this year, hitting .289 with 22 doubles, 44 runs scored and four home runs while continuing to play stellar defense in his first year as Miami’s everyday shortstop.

“Really happy with the things he’s doing,” Mattingly said. “Obviously he’s doing his drill work and is on the field running. We’re moving pretty good with him.”

Both Puello and Rojas will be part of a contingent of players on the IL who will make their way to Jupiter during the Marlins’ two-city road trip through Denver and Atlanta that begins Friday with a three-game series against the Colorado Rockies.

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Jordan McPherson covers the Miami Marlins and high school sports for the Miami Herald. He attended the University of Florida and covered the Gators athletic program for five years before joining the Herald staff in December 2017.
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