Perez, Braves deliver late after Marlins tie it twice
By Mark Bowman and Joe Frisaro
MLB.com |@mlbbowman |
ATLANTA -- Eury Perez's two-out single in the eighth inning proved to be the decisive blow as the Braves overcame Matt Wisler's shaky start and Andrew McKirahan's ugly relief appearance to claim a 9-8 win over the Marlins on Thursday night at Turner Field.
After the Marlins erased a three-run deficit against McKirahan in the top of the eighth, Daniel Castro singled off Bryan Morris to begin the bottom of the inning, moved to second on Morris' throwing error and scored when Perez hit his game-winning single to shallow left-center field. Miami has dropped four straight, allowing 44 runs during the slide.
"Yeah, we give up the runs to get it to 5-5 [in the fifth inning] and we come back and score three," Braves catcher A.J. Pierzynski said. "We give it up again and find a way to score another run and give us the win. It was a good sign offensively. Obviously defensively, it is frustrating because we give up the runs, but we fought, we did it right. We fought the fight."
Adonis Garcia highlighted Atlanta's three-run fifth inning with his four homer in what was just his 49th career at-bat. Arodys Vizcaino worked a scoreless ninth inning to record his first career save. The Braves have won eight of the first 10 games they have played against the Marlins this season.
"To come from behind two times to tie the game," Miami manager Dan Jennings said. "Just the situational hitting all night long was good."
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Markakis continues surge: Braves right fielder Nick Markakis extended his hitting streak to 13 games and drove in three of the five runs Marlins starter Jose Urena allowed through the first two innings. Markakis' two-run double highlighted a three-run second inning that also included a Jace Peterson RBI single.
Fish rally in rainy eighth: When the rain picked up in the eighth, the Marlins swam their way back into the game. For the second time on the night, Miami overcame a three-run deficit to pull even. The three runs knotted the score at 8 off McKirahan, who was with the Marlins in Spring Training. Dee Gordon had a two-run single, and Christian Yelich's fielder's-choice RBI grounder tied it. For the second straight night, the Marlins mounted late rallies, only to fall short.
"It was kind of like a continuation of last night," Jennings said a night after the Marlins scored six in the ninth in an 8-6 loss to the Mets. "Like the last inning of last night, we had some great at-bats up and down the lineup." More >
Growing pains: Wisler extended his recent struggles, allowing five earned runs and nine hits over 5 1/3 innings. Wisler surrendered two hits before recording his first out in a two-run first inning, and he allowed four hits, including Derek Dietrich's solo homer, during a two-run fourth inning. The rookie right-hander has seen his ERA rise from 3.10 to 4.85, as he has allowed at least four earned runs in three of his past four starts.
"I need to get back to slowing things down when I get guys on base," Wisler said. "I think I'm kind of rushing and letting the game speed up on me. I need to get back to settling down when guys are on base to make sure I'm executing my pitches."
Urena struck by comebacker: There was a scary moment in the second inning when Urena was pegged on the inside of his left leg on Castro's comeback liner. Castro collected a single, while Urena appeared to be seriously injured. The Miami rookie did stay in the game, but the inning got ugly as he allowed three runs, all with two outs. Urena exited after two innings.
"It affected me a little bit, because I had to change my delivery," Urena said. More >
"It's kind of like Murphy's Law. If it can, it is. It's unfortunate, but you know what? We have to let it go and be back tomorrow. But a lot of good signs offensively. ... If we continue to swing the bats like that, good things are going to happen." -- Jennings, on frustrating losses
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS Ichiro Suzuki's two singles moved him closer to another milestone. Ichiro now has 4,185 professional hits, counting his nine seasons in Japan. He's six hits from tying Ty Cobb, who had 4,191 big league hits.
WHAT'S NEXT Marlins:Jose Fernandez (4-0, 2.13 ERA) gets the nod on Friday night at 7:35 p.m. ET in the second of four games against the Braves. Fernandez is 3-1 (0.93) in four career starts against Atlanta.
Braves: Atlanta will counter with Julio Teheran, who defeated the Marlins in Miami on Opening Day and then did not win another road start until last Sunday in Philadelphia. Though Teheran has been maddeningly inconsistent this year, he has posted a 2.37 ERA in 10 home starts.
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. 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. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.