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Rockies lose 4-3 to Marlins

Scattershot offense not enough to overcome Stanton’s 41st home run

Despite nine hits, six walks, two errors, a passed ball, a wild pitch and a hit by pitch, the Rockies didn’t make much of their opportunities on offense as they lost 4-3 to the Marlins on Saturday. Giancarlo Stanton hit another home run and did other “great player” things, giving the Marlins all the runs they would need to win the game. It’s a shame because things started off pretty well.

The Rockies got on the board early. Charlie Blackmon led off with a single, then stole second base. He advanced to third on Nolan Arenado’s flyball to right field and scored on Mark Reynolds’ single to left. The Rockies were up 1-0, which was the only half inning of the entire game that they had the lead.

Jeff Hoffman started for the Rockies, throwing five innings with seven hits allowed, three walks and a strikeout. His control and mechanics wavered after the umpire failed to call what appeared to be strike three on Giancarlo Stanton during the bottom of the first inning. Stanton hit a double on the subsequent pitch, Christian Yelich walked, then both runners advanced on Hoffman’s wild pitch. Stanton scored after Marcell Ozuna grounded out to shorstop, tying the score at 1-1 after the first inning. Hoffman had a pretty clean second and third inning, but ran into trouble in the fourth. He allowed a double to Tyler Moore and a single to Miguel Rojas. It looked like the Rockies might get out of it with no damage after a play at the plate nabbed Moore, but Stanton hit a home run, his league leading 41st of the year and second shot in two days, driving in both Rojas and Dee Gordon to run the score up to 4-1 in the Marlins favor.

The Rockies got a run back in the top of the fifth. Blackmon led off with the frame with a single. When he tried to steal second, the throw from Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto got away, letting Blackmon advance to third. He then scored on DJ LeMahieu’s sacrifice fly. Both runs, (one earned), were charged to Marlins starter Justin Nicolino who gave up six hits and four walks in five and a third innings.

The Rockies offense did a few things in bunches but they couldn’t quite string the events together. The Rockies had a runner reach base in every inning and the leadoff batter reached base every time except the fourth and sixth innings but only three runs scored. Blackmon ended the day 4 for 5, catcher Jonathan Lucroy walked three times and Carlos Gonzalez got two hits including a double, which was his first extra base hit in a week and his third extra base hit since the All Star Break. He also drove in a run with a groundout in the 8th, his first road RBI since May 24th. The eighth inning run made the score 4-3.

Nolan Arenado was ejected after striking out in the top of the seventh and was replaced by Pat Valaika. Valaika reached on an infield single in the ninth against Marlins closer Brad Ziegler, and Mark Reynolds walked to make the ninth inning look threatening, but Gerardo Parra struck out for the last out of the game. Ziegler earned his fourth save of the year as the Marlins won 4-3.

Also of note, Ryan McMahon made his major league debut as a pinch hitter in the top of the eighth, flying out on a drive to the warning track in center field.

The third game of the series will be Sunday at 11:10am MST. German Marquez (9-4) will go for his tenth win against the Marlins Vance Worley (2-2).