The Miami Marlins and Colorado Rockies remain forever linked, thanks to then-MLB commissioner Fay Vincent awarding Miami and Denver expansion franchises 30 years ago. The Marlins used this series against their expansion brethren to right what felt like a sinking ship just days prior.
Miami (27-35) limped home after a nightmare road trip to find the Rockies (25-38) waiting for them. With the season in a freefall, Miami responded with their best offensive effort in a series in more than a month. The Marlins rocked Colorado’s pitching staff for 20 runs over the three-game set and were game-saving grab from a sweep.
The Marlins did suffer another one-run loss during this series, dropping their record in those contests to an abysmal 4-13. And with 41 of Miami’s 62 games so far being decided by three runs or fewer, it was nice to have a pair of comfortable wins in there.
Marlins Offense Comes Alive vs Rockies
The Marlins suffered through a rain-soaked road trip mired in ineffective offense. During the 1-8 road trip, Miami managed just 10 hits in 75 at-bats with runners-in-scoring-position (.133). The team stranded 69 runners on base during the nine-game trek where their run differential was minus-20.
The Marlins offense finally came to live against the Rockies. Although still missing major contributors from the lineup, Miami converted many of the scoring opportunities afforded to them by Colorado’s pitching staff. In the two wins, the Marlins went a combined 9-for-23 with RISP. In the one-run loss, the team went 1-for-6 and stranded 10.
This offensive outburst comes after a 10-game, nine-loss stretch where the Marlins offense produced just 2.9 runs-per-game. Miami slipped to the bottom of the NL East standings. But against the Rockies, the Marlins scored 6.7 runs-per-game and took two-of-three.
Marte Erupts During Marlins Rockies Series
Miami welcomed Starling Marte back to the lineup on May 28th. His return afforded the Marlins a key cog in their offensive attack, one they struggled to replicate in his absence. On the road trip, Marte went 10-for-30 with a pair of homers and three RBI. Against the Rockies, he continued to produce.
Marte mashed a homer and double Thursday, part of a four-hit effort. In the series, he went 8-for-13 with four runs scored. He robbed Rockies outfielder Yonathan Daza of an extra-base hit with a leaping grab as well.
Since returning from his rib injury, Marte’s posted a .419 batting average and a 1.244 OPS over 12 games. Marlins manager Don Mattingly called him “one of the best players out there.”
Marte remains an integral part of this Marlins club and he admitted to Craig Mish that “he wants to stay with the Marlins and end his career here.”
Marlins Outfielder Starling Marte told me he wants to stay with the Marlins and end his career here. He told me he would like the organization to speak with him about an extension. I will discuss our entire conversation on the next @SwingsAndMishes.
— Craig Mish (@CraigMish) June 9, 2021
However, Marlins general manager Kim Ng revealed Wednesday that there have been no “conversations with [Marte’s] representatives about him being here longer term.”
Resigning Marte one offseason after picking up his $12.5 million option would indicate the team sees their competitive window opening right now. Although the club sports a deep farm system with talented outfield prospects, no one has manned centerfield and provided the offensive output that Marte has.
More Offense from Marlins Rockies Series
The other notable offensive performance for the Marlins against the Rockies came from Jazz Chisholm Jr. The dynamic 23-year-old provided the highlight of the night with his three-run blast and bat flip. In the series, Chisholm went 6-for-14 with the homer, a double, four RBI and a walk. He was robbed of an infield single when MLB’s replay system didn’t overturn an incorrect call.
Chisholm now has three-straight multi-hit games, a four-game hitting streak and has reached base in nine-straight.
The Marlins also saw Adam Duvall heat up against the Rockies. Duvall connected on a pair of home runs in the series, going 4-for-13 overall with six RBI. And Corey Dickerson’s performance at the plate improved as well. He went 3-for-11 with a two-run triple and two walks.
Another notable performance came from rookie Jose Devers. The 21-year-old reached base three times on two hits and a walk and registered his fifth RBI. He improved his slash line to .250/.311/.325 with the effort.
Devers continues to push for more playing time despite his youth and inexperience. He got the start Thursday, in part, because of Isan Diaz’s ineffectiveness. Although Diaz has played well defensively at third, his offensive output remains a negative.
Diaz slashes .149/.241/.531 this season. He contributed to Miami’s league-leading ninth runner picked off, which Mattingly was not happy about, and seemingly missed a hit-and-run sign Wednesday that saw Dickerson run into a caught-stealing.
Miami Marlins base runners have been picked off more than any team in Baseball this season. Today he told @CDeNicola13 there will be serious consequences if it happens again. 😳😂 pic.twitter.com/iK5IRvDV0P
— Craig Mish (@CraigMish) June 10, 2021
If Devers takes a more permanent role, his pairing with Chisholm might be the second coming of a Luis Castillo–Edgar Renteria middle infield. Although Castillo (20) and Renteria (19) were younger, both excelled as rookies and played integral roles in the franchise’s first World Series Championship a year later.
Up Next: vs Atlanta Braves (29-31)
The Atlanta Braves enter this three-game set coming off a pair of walk-off losses to the Philadelphia Phillies. The Marlins took three of four from Atlanta in an impressive stretch earlier this season, but much has changed since then.
The Braves enter having gone 5-5 over their last 10, including the two walk-off losses in Philly. The team has managed a .238 batting average and 4.22 ERA in that stretch. They’ve outscored opponents by one over that span.
RHP Charlie Morton (5-2, 4.21 ERA) should start opposite Sandy Alcantara (3-5, 3.30 ERA) Friday. Morton has been sharp of late, posting a 2.74 ERA over his past four starts. But he is susceptible to the big inning, having surrendered at least three runs in an inning in six of his 12 starts. The Marlins also expect to see LHP Max Fried (3-3, 4.63 ERA) and LHP Drew Smyly (2-3, 5.82 ERA) in this series.
The Marlins won’t see either Marcell Ozuna or Travis d’Arnaud in this series. Ozuna’s fractured fingers landed him on the 10-day IL before he was arrested on domestic violence charges on May 29th. d’Arnaud, meanwhile, could be out until August with torn ligaments in his left thumb.
Over their last 10, Miami posted a 3-7 record with a .260 batting average and 4.21 ERA in those games. They were outscored by five. They’ll be without Brian Anderson, Garrett Cooper and Miguel Rojas, as well as Cody Poteet for this series. Braxton Garrett, who made his first start of the season against the Rockies, may get another turn in the rotation during this series.