By Joe Frisaro and Steve Wilaj
MLB.com |@JoeFrisaro |
MIAMI -- Marcell Ozuna laced a game-changing, three-run double in the fifth inning and Giancarlo Stanton launched a towering home run in the seventh to help power the Marlins to a 5-2 victory over the Cubs on Tuesday night at Marlins Park.
Miami lefty Brad Hand allowed two runs in six innings, collecting his first win of the season. Kyle Hendricks struck out seven in six innings, but he got into a bases-loaded bind in the fifth, and Ozuna delivered the three-run double that put Miami in front, 4-2.
"Huge," Miami manager Dan Jennings said of Ozuna's two-out hit. "Five runs tonight all with two outs. I think that speaks volumes about our approach up there and guys grinding out at-bats. But you've got to look at Brad Hand, setting tone the way he did."
Stanton, who walked and struck out twice, crushed a towering, opposite-field home run off lefty Zac Rosscup with two outs in the seventh. Statcast™ projected the blast to have landed 409 feet away, with an exit velocity of 107 mph.
"I think that his whole intention was trying to throw me out at third," Russell said. "I'm right there in his eye view and he saw me off second; Castro was still at third and he made the throw to second."
Castro had led off the ninth with a single, which was his 900th career hit. He's the youngest Cubs player to reach the milestone.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Hand helps with hit: Hand doesn't usually offer much with the bat. The lefty was 3-for-53 in his career before his leadoff single in the fifth inning. The single set the table for Ozuna's bases-clearing double. More >
Gordon sparkles on Dee-fence: Gordon has been playing Gold Glove-caliber defense all season. He had a highlight show on Tuesday, with his best play coming in the seventh. Ranging up the middle, Gordon snared Dexter Fowler's sharp grounder, and he threw the speedster out at first to end the inning.
Right spot, wrong result: Rosscup had Stanton down in the count 1-2 with two outs in the seventh inning. On his fourth pitch, he hit the spot catcher David Ross was calling for -- high and away -- but Stanton clobbered it anyway, sending it to the right-center-field seats for a solo home run and a 5-2 Marlins lead.
Rally stalls:Miguel Montero came to the plate with two outs in the ninth inning representing the tying run. But with Coghlan on first and Castro on third, Montero struck out to end the Cubs rally and the game. More >
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Miami's Christian Yelich went 0-for-4, snapping a nine-game hitting streak.
"I look at these two guys [Gordon and Hechavarria] and you don't want to compare. It's easy for us to go back and look at Alex Gonzalez and Luis Castillo. These two guys in the middle and their play. They turn hits into double plays, outs. It's fun to watch what they can do acrobatically and how they do it. Their body control is phenomenal. Every night you see something and it wows you because of their true athleticism." -- Jennings, on the defense played by Gordon and Hechavarria
After Hechavarria's tag of Russell at second base in the ninth, the Cubs opted to challenge the play, but it took umpires just 35 seconds to confirm the call.
WHAT'S NEXT Cubs:Jon Lester (4-3, 3.30 ERA) tries to stay hot in the series finale on Wednesday at 6:10 p.m. CT. The lefty has recorded a quality start in each of his past seven starts and is coming off a 10-strikeout performance.
Marlins:Dan Haren goes for his sixth win of the season in Wednesday's finale. The 34-year-old is 5-2 with a 3.03 ERA. In his career, Haren is 2-3 with a 5.71 ERA against the Cubs.
Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast. Steve Wilaj is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.