Prado provides clutch hits, helps out hot Hechavarria
Veteran (four RBIs) adds on in four-run fourth, mentors shortstop, who goes 4-for-4
By Michael Radano
Special to MLB.com |
PHILADELPHIA -- After a slow start, not to mention a rough trip to Citi Field that resulted in a four-game sweep, the Marlins desperately needed their veteran leadership to calm the state of affairs. As a team, the Marlins are still very young, which puts more of an impetus on players with significant Major League time.
A prime example of that has been the play of Martin Prado, who not only contributed on the field but has mentored shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria to a certain degree. The two played a huge part in the Marlins' 9-1 win over the Phillies on Thursday afternoon to salvage a 4-6 record on a 10-game road trip that went through Atlanta, New York and Philadelphia.
Prado, who has settled into the No. 2 spot in the lineup this series, went 3-for-5 with four RBIs and a run scored. Hechavarria went 4-for-4 with three RBIs and two runs scored.
"We need big at-bats and big hits," manager Mike Redmond said. "We need hits with guys in scoring position. We knew they were going to come; it was a matter of when. That's why you have veterans on your team, because you know when crunch time comes, they'll come through."
In the fourth, Hechavarria hit a two-run single to put the Marlins on the board. As a team, the Marlins have struggled to take advantage of situations where they could pile on runs, and with two out and the bases loaded, Prado had one of those veteran at-bats. He battled through seven pitches from Phillies starter Dustin McGowan before he singled through the left side to drive in two runs and give Miami a 4-0 lead.
"We've had a couple of rough weeks," said Prado, who also had a two-run double in the sixth when the Marlins blew things open. "Guys have realized that we have been swimming against the current. Right now we're just trying to go with the flow and not do too much or be the hero. Right now we're just trying to play our part."
As for Hechavarria, Prado sees a talented player that can expand his approach at the plate in a positive way, even though he already has a good idea of what he wants to do.
"He has a great approach," Prado said. "He's one of those kids that wants to hit everything to right field, which is a good thing. He can be able to drive the ball the other way. The one thing I've been telling him is he can pull the ball too. He's a kid that's being positive and is committed to having a good approach, and finally he has an approach that he feels comfortable enough to hit the ball that's inside."
Michael Radano is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.