As the 60 game sprint approaches its finish line, the Miami Marlins are in position to make it to October baseball for the first time since 2003.
Following Sunday’s games, only two seeds have been clinched a playoff spot in the National League, as lots of teams continue to give it their all, especially the Marlins.
Here are five key takeaways the Marlins should absorb from their final home stand of the 2020 season.
1. One for the money, two for the show, Brian Anderson hits three gone and does not want to go home!
Taking a look into Brian Anderson’s performance in Game 2 against the Washington Nationals, the four-year pro was the center of attention for both teams.
Hitting three home runs to left field, driving in seven runs, Anderson continues to prove his worth with the Fish, giving Derek Jeter a reason to extend the hottest hitter in the lineup. There’s so much talk about Miami’s hitting ability and Anderson’s effort doesn’t go unnoticed. His talents will be needed to garner the Marlins a playoff spot.
2. Pablo Lopez showing up to the party.
Throughout the season, Pablo Lopez has shown some struggles coming into the last stretch of his 2020 campaign. During his performance in Game 3, Lopez proved once again why he’s one of the most underrated pitchers in baseball. Through 5 and a third innings, Lopez got himself into a massive pitching battle which ended in Miami’s favor. On 100 pitches, Lopez had seven strikeouts and only allowed two runs off three hits.
Lopez will get one more chance to get his team into the playoffs in Miami’s four game series versus the Atlanta Braves.
3. Offensive outburst.
With 23 runs off 36 hits, the Marlins’ bats were once again popping off as they keep climbing the ladder to the top. Besides Anderson, it was an all-around effort by the entire lineup. With home runs, RBI’s and players rounding the bases, Miami will need to keep this amazing trait of theirs consistent through the last seven games and into October in the event that the Marlins go the distance.
4. Another playoff spot reserved on Sunday.
As the American League seeds continue filling up quickly, the National League is not too far behind. On Sunday, the hot San Diego Padres clinched a trip to the playoffs for the first time since 2006, closing out the two top spots in the N.L. West, as the Los Angeles Dodgers struck first. With two seats taken in the National League, the room has become smaller for the Marlins to squeeze into.
The playoff picture on Monday shows that if the season ended today, the Miami would end up facing San Diego.
5. Got the series win.
The end goal of this 60-game sprint is to finish with a good enough record to play baseball in October. Miami’s goal for the season was to win, and they won in this series, another step in the right direction. Taking three of five against the Nationals, the Marlins keep moving with only seven games left to go in the regular season.
Player of the series: Brian Anderson.
The studded 3rd baseman keeps adding to his trophy case. Going 5 of 8 with eight RBI’s, Anderson was an absolute stud all series on both sides. Mentioned earlier was his power, which he uses to his advantage across the diamond. With some great plays in the hot corner, Anderson held his own and saved some critical runs from Washington.
With the Nationals officially out of the playoff picture, the Marlins are one step closer from October baseball. Currently, Miami is on their to play the current N.L. East first place Braves in a four-game series. Trevor Rodgers will get the start for the Marlins while Huascar Ynoa will represent Atlanta on the mound to start off the night.
The first pitch is expected at 7:10 P.M. at Truist Park in Atlanta, Georgia.