Nathan Eovaldi solid as Marlins top Rockies 4-3
MIAMI — Nathan Eovaldi receives lousy run support when he’s on the mound. On Tuesday, the Miami Marlins gave him some help after he left the game.
Maybe the Marlins really are improved.
Eovaldi pitched six innings and Miami made the most of five hits to beat the Colorado Rockies for the second night in a row, 4-3.
The Marlins’ 2-0 start is a big change from last year, when they began 14-41 en route to a 100-loss season.
"It’s all in the past," Eovaldi said. "It’s a completely different team."
Eovaldi has endured the worst run support in the majors since 2011, but the Marlins went ahead to stay after he came out of the game, scoring two runs in the sixth.
Miami’s bullpen did the rest. A.J. Ramos struck out Nolan Arenado with runners at the corners to end the eighth, protecting a one-run lead. Steve Cishek converted his 30th consecutive save opportunity and first of the year by pitching a perfect ninth.
"That shows how we’re going to play," Ramos said. "We’re going to score runs, and when we do get the lead, we’re going to hold it. We’ve got guys in the bullpen that can come in after anybody and clean up a situation. It’s reassuring, and it shows everybody that we are a totally different team this year."
For the Rockies, the 0-2 start seems like more of the same after they finished last in the NL West in 2013.
"We didn’t get the big hit late," manager Walt Weiss said. "Bottom line is we have to find a way to tie that game or take the lead."
Miami’s rotation — the youngest in the majors — stifled the Rockies for the second game in a row. Eovaldi (1-0) allowed two runs and struck out six after Jose Fernandez limited Colorado to one run in the season opener. Eovaldi gave up six hits, walked one and reached 99 mph on the radar gun.
The crowd of 15,906 made for a more subdued atmosphere than Monday’s opener, which Miami won 10-1.
Newcomer Casey McGehee singled home the Marlins’ final run and has five RBIs in the first two games. The Marlins had a hit in only two innings, but through two games they’re batting .526 (10 for 19) with runners in scoring position.
Giancarlo Stanton made several nice catches in right field, and Jeff Baker’s hard slide broke up a potential double play to keep the Marlins’ sixth-inning rally going.
"We’re playing the right way," manager Mike Redmond said. "Guys are getting after it."
Redmond came onto the field to question a call on a close play at first base in the fifth inning, but his conversation with umpire Mike DiMuro was polite. After receiving a signal from his staff that the ruling was correct, Redmond told DiMuro he didn’t want a video review.
"I said, ‘Hey, you got it. I’m out of here,’" Redmond said.
Regarding the new replay system, he said: "It’s more peaceful."
Brett Anderson (0-1) pitched six innings and allowed four runs, three earned. It was the left-hander’s first start with the Rockies after he was acquired in a trade with Oakland in December.
Miami went ahead for good in Anderson’s final inning.
Reed Johnson pinch-hit for Eovaldi and led off with a double. He advanced on a groundout and scored when Stanton hit into a forceout. Stanton advanced on a throwing error by second baseman D.J. LeMahieu, stole third and scored on McGehee’s two-out single.
NOTES: Colorado’s Troy Tulowitzki went into the hole at shortstop to rob Marcell Ozuna of a hit on a grounder in the fifth. … Rockies RHP Jordan Lyles will be activated to start Wednesday in place of RHP Tyler Chatwood, who is out with a left hamstring strain. RHP Henderson Alvarez will make his first start for the Marlins since throwing a no-hitter on the final day of the 2013 regular season. … LHP Franklin Morales will start Thursday at Miami for the Rockies, and RHP Juan Nicasio will start their home opener Friday against Arizona.