Sports in the 305 continue to thrive, especially for the Miami Marlins, who closed out their season series against the Philadelphia Phillies on a high note, winning five of seven games.
Here are my five takeaways from the lengthy series.
1 — Enter Braxton Garett
The No. 7 overall prospect in Miami’s farming system was finally called up to the big leagues in a critical game six of the series. The 2016 MLB Draft pick truly excelled in Miami’s dominant pitching rotation and system during the game, securing his first MLB win and a series win in his debut for the team. Garrett had a stellar five innings, striking out six batters, earning a 1.80 ERA and only allowing one run off of three hits.
What does this mean for the Marlins?
With struggles showing from former ace Jose Urena, Garrett could be replacing Urena as the day goes on. With Miami’s pitching rotation putting the entire league on notice, he could be the one to put the fish on the map.
2. Let the bats go wild
Sure, seven games allows for a lot of hits and runs to come in, but the Marlins were notably consistent. With 34 runs off of 60 hits, business was booming at home plate for the Marlins. Keep in mind that four of the seven games were doubleheaders, which are only seven-inning games
It’s really hard to single out one player who was hot in the series, because it seemed like everyone was doing their job with the stick. If the Marlins look to make a playoff run, this needs to be a consistent element to their play.
Looking ahead in the schedule, Miami still has Boston, Washington, Atlanta and New York to face. All of those teams have a galore of heavy hitters and can pose a threat to this young Marlins squad. The only way fans see the Fish in the playoffs for the first time since 2003 is if the bats stay hot, and this series was a great sign that they will do exactly that.
3. Welcome back, but goodbye again to Isan Diaz
Shortly after opting back into the 2020 MLB season, Isan Diaz returned as the starting second baseman for the Marlins.
When most of those who were affected by the COVID-19 clubhouse outbreak returned to play, Diaz did too and got his share of play against the only team he has faced in 2020. The second-year player made somewhat of an impact at the plate. He went 2-12 in the series with one of those hits bringing in a run during Friday’s second game.
The Marlins appeared to have gained back some of their speed, fielding skill and hitting power from the 2019 Rookie of the Year snub. However, Diaz was placed on the 60-day injured list Tuesday with a left groin strain, Craig Mish of SportsGrid.com reported.
4. Is Sixto Sanchez the modern day Pedro Martinez?
This past week, MLB legend Pedro Martinez admired Sixto Sanchez’s pitching.
“This kid is a mini me with better stuff.” Martinez said.
Little did Martinez know that Sanchez looked up to him as a mentor and inspiration for pitching style. Sixto even has Pedro’s follow-through leg swing down to the point. Fans all know Martinez for being one of the greatest pitchers of his era.
Are we starting to see the next Pedro Martinez?
There’s Jacob DeGrom, Clayton Kershaw, Justin Verlander, among others, but among all rookies, Sixto Sanchez is a picture of the future of Baseball.
Sixto played one full doubleheader game during the seven-game series, recording four strikeouts and allowing one run off of only three hits. He’s only played in five MLB games and has earned an outstanding 1.69 ERA with 29 strikeouts.
5. Biggest series of the season
A seven-game series brings trouble to a lot of teams, but not the Marlins. The ‘bottom feeder’ fish just keep feeding and they’re hungry for more.
Miami won five out of seven games, finishing off the season series against Philadelphia with a 7-3 record against the Phillies in 2020.
Player of the Series: Starling Marte
So far, Miami’s blockbuster trade for Starling Marte has been gone to their favor, and in this series, he proved why he’s a key asset to this Marlins crew.
He went 10-25 with seven RBI’s in the series. With Marte still showing off his experience and talent at both ends, Miami’s playoff push will be a little bit easier with a player like Starling Marte repping Miami.
With Miami down to their last four opponents and a playoff push in full gear, the Miami Marlins look to keep pushing forward towards October baseball.