Nolasco looks good for Marlins vs. Rays
Ricky Nolasco had a solid outing and the Florida Marlins scored
four runs in the seventh inning to defeat the Tampa Bay Rays 8-5 on
Nolasco scattered four hits over four innings, striking out four
and yielding one run to drop his spring ERA to 2.57.
Marlins catcher Ronny Paulino went 2 for 3 with an RBI single
off of Rays starter Matt Garza in the third inning. Brett Carroll
connected for a home run off of Garza in the fifth inning.
B.J. Upton went 3 for 3 with his first two homers of the spring.
His first homer was an opposite field shot off Nolasco in the
fourth inning and he added a two-run homer to the opposite field in
the sixth inning off of Andrew Miller.
“That is what got me here,” Upton said of the opposite field
homers. “To hit the ball that way with authority feels good.”
“It’s too bad they didn’t mean anything because it’s spring
training,” Upton added. “But to swing well was the key and
overall I felt pretty good.”
Former All-Star Hank Blalock made his spring debut for the Rays
batting eighth as the designated hitter. He finished 0 for 3 with a
walk and had a potential extra-base hit taken from him on a diving
catch by Marlins left fielder Chris Coghlan.
Paulino and Jorge Cantu each had extra-base hits for the Marlins
and backup infielder Brian Barden continued his strong spring with
a three-run double off of Grant Balfour as part of a four-run
seventh inning for Florida.
The Rays loaded the bases in the bottom of the eighth thanks to
three walks from Marlins reliever Derrick Turnbow, but Sean
Rodriguez flied out to end the threat. Cristhian Martinez pitched
the final 1 1-3 innings for Florida to record the save.
Catcher Kelly Stoppach went 2 for 2 for the Rays and Willy Aybar
had two RBIs and a solo home run in the ninth.
Miller gave up three runs over three innings and walked four to
see his spring ERA rise to 10.80.
Balfour retired just two of the eight batters he faced in the
seventh, giving up four runs on four hits as his spring ERA
ballooned to 14.73.