Coming off of his gorgeous eight-inning shutout last week, Anibal did a complete about-face against Atlanta. He only allowed two hits and three runs to the Braves, but to say Sanchez “struggled” with his control would be putting it as mildly as possible. To struggle with control, there has to actually be a small amount of control with which to struggle. Ani walked a career high eight batters in the game, including three walks in the first inning to load the bases with no one out. McCann grounded out to score a run, and a fly ball from Garret Anderson put the Braves up 2-0.
The Marlins began their series with Atlanta Monday night at Turner Field, and were looking to bounce back from being shut out by the Mets and eliminated in the NL East Sunday afternoon.
Sadly, someone forgot to alert Anibal Sanchez and the Marlins bats as to the whole “bounce back” strategy.
Ani settled in slightly after the first, and allowed just one more run courtesy of a solo homer to Chipper Jones in the third inning. He managed to last five innings for the Marlins, which may be close to miraculous, considering the trouble he had commanding his pitches. But, at the risk of sounding like a broken record (see yesterday’s recap), the game was already over. The Marlins were blanked, again, so Sanchez could have struck out fifteen and allowed just the solo shot to Chipper, and he still would have been tagged with the loss.
Jair Jurrjens allowed five hits and one walk through his seven innings of work, and once again the Fish couldn’t get a run to cross the plate. There were opportunities, but any and all attempts to capitalize on said opportunities were met with failure. In the seventh inning, the Marlins had runners at the corners with no outs, and once again could not bring a single runner home.
As previously discussed, scoring runs is generally a requirement for winning ball games, and so the Marlins dropped their second straight, and reduced their wild card elimination number to one.
It’s not as though all of HLD&S’s post-season hopes were dashed Monday night. Forget the post-season. Right now we are lamenting the fact that this is our last week to watch Marlins baseball for another six months, and the Fish are making it about as exciting as watching dust gather on great-grandma’s porcelain doll collection.