Chen's 12 K's, Bour's blast lift Marlins over Brewers
By Joe Frisaro and Glenn Sattell
MIAMI -- Wei-Yin Chen was missing bats and Justin Bour didn't miss an 81-mph changeup. Chen matched his career high with 12 strikeouts on Wednesday night, and Bour delivered a two-run home run that vaulted the Marlins to a 3-2 win over the Brewers at Marlins Park.
Bour's blast off Chase Anderson opened the scoring in a three-run fifth inning. Chen was charged with two runs in 6 1/3 innings, and the Marlins took two of three in the series to finish their homestand at 6-3.
"He got ahead in the count a lot," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said of Chen. "It looked like he was pounding the strike zone and then was able use his slider. He was able to get the ball in, drive it in there, and not just get it in there. He got the ball to both sides of the plate a little bit and was able to use his slider some, use his changeup some."
Anderson didn't allow a hit until Martin Prado's one-out single in the fourth inning. But in the fifth, Bour delivered a two-run blast to right, and Marcell Ozuna, who doubled to extend his hit streak to 11 games, scored on Adeiny Hechavarria's sacrifice fly.
"Just left the changeup up to Bour," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "I thought his tempo was really good tonight. First four innings were outstanding."
Ryan Braun had an RBI single in the seventh inning to draw the Brewers within one, but Ozuna came up with a big defensive play on the hit. The Marlins' center fielder threw out Jonathan Villar trying to go from first to third.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Stanton's walk, Bour's blast: The threat of Giancarlo Stanton put in motion the Marlins' three-run fifth inning. Anderson had allowed one hit and faced the minimum through four innings, but Stanton drew a leadoff walk in the fifth. Pitching out of the stretch, Anderson allowed a two-run homer to Bour, who belted his two-run drive to right. Statcast™ projected the dinger to have landed 390 feet away, with an exit velocity of 98 mph. It was Bour's third homer of the season against Milwaukee.
"It's always frustrating a little bit when I see 'G' get walked," Bour said. "I want to make sure that I'm doing my job behind him to drive the ball. So people don't just feel they can put him on. In that situation right there, to get down two strikes, I'm just trying to drive the ball. I hit a changeup and it went out."
Dozen K's for Chen: Not known for striking batters out, Chen matched his career high with 12 punchouts. The other time he fanned 12 was on July 29, 2012, with the Orioles against the Athletics. One of the biggest strikeouts Chen recorded came in the first inning with two outs and runners on first and third. The lefty had four straight strikeouts in the fifth and the first out of the sixth.
"Today my slider was working pretty well, and also [catcher Jeff] Mathis behind the plate, he was helping me a lot, the way he calls the game," Chen said. "The way he asks me where to pitch to. The 12 strikeouts is a lot because of him." More >
Minimum effort: Anderson faced the minimum through four innings, allowing only a fourth-inning single by Prado, who was eliminated on a strike-'em-out, throw-'em-out double play. But Anderson's run ended in the fifth inning when the first three Marlins reached base and scored. Included in that was the two-run homer by Bour. Anderson then finished his night by retiring the side in order in the sixth.
"I feel like [the outing] was a step in the right direction in getting back to who I am," Anderson said. More >
Still streaking: Braun extended his hitting streak with a first-inning single. That's 11 consecutive games with a hit for Braun, the longest such streak for the Crew this season. Braun went 3-for-4 with an RBI. He also extended his road hitting streak against the Marlins to 23 games.
"He's really locked in," manager Craig Counsell said of the University of Miami alum. "He loves hitting here in Miami. He's been really consistent."
"It's so much better when everybody contributes. Chen was holding up for [6 1/3] strong innings. Everybody has to step up. That's the beauty about this game, this is not about one guy. Every night it's a different guy. It's good when we've got this chemistry as a team that everybody trusts everyone else can do something special every night." -- Prado, on the Marlins' collective effort
WHAT'S NEXT Brewers:Jimmy Nelson gets the start against the Padres in a four-game series opener on Thursday. First pitch is set for 7:10 p.m. CT. Nelson turned in quality starts in each of his first three outings this season, but just one over his last four starts.
Marlins: After a nine-game homestand, the Marlins are off on Thursday before opening a four-game series in D.C. against the Nationals at 7:10 p.m. ET on Friday. Tom Koehler (2-3, 5.83 ERA) gets the start for Miami. Gio Gonzalez (2-1, 2.19) goes for Washington.