If there were a baseball version of the movie “The Replacements,” the Miami Marlins would be perfect for the role. After COVID-19 ran rampant through their entire roster, they went deep into their 60-man player pool to move to 7-1 with their 4-3 win against the New York Mets.
The best team in baseball …
• Best record in MLB
• Only team with at least .800 win%
• First time in almost 4 years Marlins are 5 games over .500 pic.twitter.com/hVlvWrSCU3
— CBS Sports HQ (@CBSSportsHQ) August 7, 2020
The Mets’ inability to capitalize on their biggest scoring opportunity is the biggest reason why they fell to 5-9 on the season. After a run-scoring error and a J.D. Davis RBI single, the Mets had the bases loaded with only one out.
Dominic Smith had a solo-homer on the night but failed to hit a deep enough fly ball to get the tying run across. Wilson Ramos followed him with a lined shot up the middle, but Eddy Alvarez was able to knock it down. Ramos moves similarly to the average NFL offensive lineman, and it was an easy out for Ramirez to make.
An overlooked play in the game came during the third inning when Michael Conforto blooped a double into left field. Brandon Nimmo was the runner on first and did not notice when the ball trickled past left fielder Corey Dickerson. Instead of keeping his eyes on the ball, he assumed Dickerson would field the ball cleanly and slid into third instead of easily scoring. The mistake ended up being part of the difference in the loss.
Michael Wacha wishes he could make the second inning of his start disappear. After striking out the side in the first inning, he allowed all four runs of the game in that second inning. There was a noticeable dip in velocity from in his fastball, which contributed to the poor second inning. Wacha was around 96-97 in the first but dropped a couple of miles per hour after.
Wacha adjusted after that and had a high strikeout game, recording nine of them on the night. He even struck out four in a row at one point, giving the Mets a bright ending to what looked like a poor start.
One of the Marlins replacements was their starter, Humberto Mejia. The rookie never pitched an inning above high-A but held his own in a bullpen game for the Marlins. Six of the seven outs he recorded were strikeouts, and despite sitting around 92-93 with his fastball, the Mets could not touch it.
A couple of positive for the Mets came from Chasen Shreve and Pete Alonso. Shreve gave the Mets 2.1 innings following Wacha, only allowing one walk and striking out five. His ERA is 2.84 an impressive 14.21 K/9 in 6.1 innings this season.
Alonso is slowly getting himself out of his season-long slump. He continued trending upwards, lining a double off the center-field fence, and recording a single to the opposite field. Most importantly is Alonso making use of the whole field and letting his power come naturally.
The Marlins have not announced a starter for Saturday’s matchup, but whoever it is will be facing David Peterson. The rookie is making his home debut and looks to continue his strong start to the season. First pitch is at 7:10 p.m ET.