Thursday, July 31, 2014

Reds Steal Win Over Marlins

     In one of the most bizarre calls ever in South Florida baseball history, that involved the newly implemented Rule 7.13, the Cincinnati Reds escaped with a 3-1 win over the Miami Marlins on Thursday night at Marlins Park. The Reds snapped a ten-game road losing streak which was their longest since 1998.
     The outlook on the contest was changed in the top of the eighth when Cincinnati(54-54) had the bases loaded with one out and the Fish were up 1-0. Todd Frazier flew out to right field and Giancarlo Stanton fired the ball home where Zack Cozart was tagged out at the plate. The call was overturned due to the replay rule by the Major League Baseball office in New York City.
     Ryan Ludwick followed with a two-run single into shallow center field to score Devin Mesoraco and Billy Hamilton as the Marlins trailed 3-1.
     Miami(53-55) scored their only run of the game during the first inning as Stanton smacked a solo home run to left field on a 0-1 pitch against Johnny Cueto. He is now tied in the National League with his 25th homer of the season.
     Cueto went seven innings, allowed one run on four hits and struck out nine to raise his record up to 12-6. Tom Koehler dropped to 7-8 as he gave up two runs on five hits in seven innings. Aroldis Chapman collected his 24th save of the year for the Reds.

Miami Heat Moves

     Numerous decisions were made on free agency by the Miami Heat in the month of July. The franchise looked to continue their recent success after winning four Eastern Conference titles and two NBA championships over the last four seasons.
     The big prize LeBron James decided to opt out of his contract with Miami. He moved back to Ohio and play with the Cleveland Cavaliers. The other two players who made up The Big Three back in July 2010 were Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. They both opted out of their long-term contracts and resigned new deals with the Heat. Longtime Heat player Udonis Haslem reworked his deal and remained in Miami.
     Miami looked elsewhere to sign more free agents to fill in their roster for the upcoming 2014-15 season. The Heat were able to sign Luol Deng after spending last season with the Chicago Bulls and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Deng had played over nine seasons with the Bulls after being drafted by them in 2004.
     The Heat also added Danny Granger and Josh McRoberts to the roster. Granger, who played over eight seasons with the Indiana Pacers, helped them face Miami in the Eastern Conference Finals back in 2013. He spent last season with the Pacers and the Los Angeles Clippers. McRoberts is a journeyman who played last year with the Charlotte Bobcats.

Marlins Trade Jake Marisnick For Jarred Cosart

     The Miami Marlins have traded Jake Marisnick, Colin Moran and Francis Martes for Jarred Cosart, Enrique Hernandez and Austin Wates on Thursday. The deal came on the final day of the trade deadline throughout Major League Baseball.
     Marisnick was brought up to the majors in 2013 by the Fish where he had one home run, five runs batted in and hit .185 in 40 games. He played 14 games this season and had a .167 batting average. Marisnick was part of the 12-player deal with the Toronto Blue Jays in November 2012.
     Moran, who played college ball with the University of North Carolina, was the first overall pick and the sixth overall in the 2013 MLB Draft. He has played single-A minor league ball in the Marlins system as a third baseman.     
     Cosart has been on the major league roster over the last two seasons with Houston. He is 9-7 this season as he has started 20 games, struck out 75 in 116 1/3 innings with a 4.41 earned runs average.
     Hernandez, who plays as a middle infielder and outfielder, made his major league debut with Astros in July 1. He has played 24 games with one home run, eight runs batted in and a .284 batting average.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Marlins Shut Out Nationals

     The Miami Marlins continued their winning ways as they blanked the Washington Nationals 3-0 at Marlins Park on Tuesday night. The Marlins, who have won six consecutive games, have been victorious nine of their last ten games and reached the .500 mark for the first time since June 25.
     Henderson Alvarez moved his record to 8-5 for the Fish as he pitched seven innings of shutout ball and allowed three hits. Steve Cishek collected his 27th save of the year. Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg went seven innings and allowed one run on four hits as he fell to 7-9.
     Miami(53-53) got a quick rally during the sixth inning to take a 1-0 lead. Jordany Valdespin led off with a base hit into center field and then scored on a double by Giancarlo Stanton to left field.
     Washington(57-47) surrendered two runs in the bottom of the eighth. Reed Johnson singled to left and Christian Yelich knocked him in on a double with a double into left-center field against Jerry Blevins. After a Valdespin sacrifice, Aaron Barrett replaced Blevins. Stanton followed with a base hit to left and Yelich crossed the plate for a Marlins three-run margin.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Marlins Miracle Comeback Over Nationals

     The Miami Marlins scored four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to defeat the Washington Nationals 7-6 at Marlins Park on Monday night. The Fish overcame a six-run deficit in the final three innings to beat the National League East leading Nats.
     The Marlins got their eight walk-off victory this season which is tied for second in the majors. They came back from at least six runs down for the first time since July 2009 against Arizona. In that game they were down by seven runs.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Strikers Tie Cosmos

     The Fort Lauderdale Strikers and the New York Cosmos finished with a 1-1 tie on Saturday night at Lockhart Stadium. The Strikers had lost three straight matches against the Cosmos since their NASL rivalry renewed last year.
     New York raced out to a 1-0 lead six minutes in the game. Hans Denissen headed the ball ahead to Jemal Johnson and he kicked in a volley shot from 13 yards out by Strikers goalkeeper Kamil Contofalsky.
     Fort Lauderdale received a penalty kick in the 24th minute as defender Ayoze was called for a hand ball when he stuck arm out on a crossing pass. Jenison scored as he blasted the ball into the low left corner by goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer to tie it at 1-1.
     Strikers midfielder Ronaldo Vieira was booked for a red card as he took down from behind Cosmos midfielder Daniel Szetela in the 39th minute. Fort Lauderdale played shorthanded for the remainder of the contest.
     The Cosmos had one last great opportunity in stoppage time at the end of the second half. Forward Mads Stokkelien fired a half-volley shot from 16 yards out over the head of Contofalsky and the ball banged out off the crossbar.  

Marlins Blank Astros

     The Miami Marlins faced a former National League rival on Friday night as they beat the Houston Astros 2-0 at Minute Maid Park. The Fish have won five of their last six games while the Astros have lost three straight games.
     Miami(49-53) starting pitcher Brad Hand hurled 7 1/3 innings of shutout ball and allowed three hits to improve his record to 2-2. Dallas Keuchel started for Houston(42-61) as gave up two unearned runs on nine hits, struck out nine in seven innings and fell to 9-7. Steve Cishek pitched a scoreless ninth inning for his 25th save of the season.
     The only scoring by the Marlins was during the seventh inning. Jarrod Saltalamacchia reached base on a fielding error by Astros center fielder Enrique Hernandez with one out. He went to second on a passed ball and advanced to third on a two-out infield hit to short by Adeiny Hechavarria. Jeff Mathis followed with a two-run double into left-center field to score Saltalamacchia and Hechavarria.