The Miami Marlins kicked off the 60-game regular season on an excellent note, picking up a 2-1 series win over the Philadelphia Phillies, which puts them in the 1st place position in the N.L. East.
Sandy Alcantara got his first Opening Day start and made an impact immediately, recording seven strikeouts and a 1.35 ERA in 6.2 innings pitched.
The Marlins offense also came to play. Jesus Aguilar had a go-ahead two-run dinger to center field which started off a hitting frenzy for Miami. The Marlins finished game one with nine hits and five runs, while only allowing five hits and two runs in the 5-2 win for the Fish. The victory ended Miami’s Opening Day losing streak, which led back to 2014.
The 3-game series continued on Saturday, where Philadelphia brought all the power for both teams. Starting pitcher Zach Wheeler was verging on perfect for the Phillies for seven innings, only allowing one run and five hits.
The real talent came from home plate for Philadelphia, who came out of the gate swinging for the fences. Phil Gosselin recorded two home runs, Didi Gregorius hit his second homer of the series, and former Marlin J.T. Realmuto sent one to the stands as well. The Phillies easily secured the victory with a final score of 7-1.
The series was all tied up, and for every team in this condensed season, every game counts. Marlins pitcher Jose Urena was a late scratch to Sunday Series Finale, due to a positive COVID-19 test. Robert Dugger got the call tothe mound in replacement of Urena against Vince Velasquez.
Dugger started off horribly, allowing four runs off of five hits in the first inning. Nonetheless, Miami persevered and made up for Dugger’s mistake. Miami would tie up the game after a 3-run home run from captain Miguel Rojas. Rojas would go on to have a stellar game, hitting a triple in the 4th and a single in the 5th. Miggy Ro had two chances to record the first cycle in Marlins history, but ended up getting hit by a pitch and struck out.
Miami kept it going, and wouldn’t let go of their lead after the fourth inning. Brian Anderson also hit a 3-Run home run and Corey Dickerson would also hit a blast to the second deck. The Marlins would go on and get the series win with a final score of 11-6.
Offensive Player of the Series: Miguel Rojas:
With a series filled with hits, home runs, and RBI’s, Rojas definitely deserves the Player of The Series award for what he did this past weekend. Rojas started off his season on a 7-10 at-bat record, having a .700 AVG, five RBI’s, a home run, and seven hits.
Defensive Player of the Series: Sandy Alcantara:
With his first Opening Day start, Alcantara took no time to set the game straight and shut down all critics. The 24-year-old was the key reason Miami won their first game and the reason Miami’s defense had little work to do through the first seven innings. Alcantara starts the season with a 1.35 ERA, allowing just three hits.
The Marlins will host their 2020 home-opener against the Baltimore Orioles coming down for a 4-game interleague series. Pablo Lopez will get the start for Miami and Asher Wojciechowski will start for the Orioles. The first pitch is on Monday, July 27 at 7:10 p.m.