Stanton’s walk-off grand slam powers Marlins past Mariners
A replay reversal loaded the bases with nobody out and the score tied, which meant the Seattle Mariners had to pitch to Giancarlo Stanton for a change.
He made them pay.
Stanton hit a grand slam to redeem himself for a costly error early in the game, and the Miami Marlins beat the Seattle Mariners 8-4 Friday night.
"We tried to stay away from him all night, because he is the one guy in that lineup that can really hurt you," Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said. "We had no choice there."
The overturned call set the table for Stanton. Reed Johnson was ruled out at third on a force play following a bunt, but the umpires reviewed the call and determined third baseman Kyle Seager had juggled the ball.
"I’m a big fan of replay tonight," Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. "I was fired up when we won the challenge."
"I knew it was going to be overturned right away," McClendon said. "That was the right call."
The Mariners deployed five infielders for a potential forceout at the plate, and Stanton cleared them all with a towering homer to the left of the home-run sculpture. The 6-foot-6, 242-pound slugger took a pounding from jubilant teammates when he reached home plate, but he said he wasn’t hurt.
"Nah," he said. "I was throwing punches, too."
Stanton tied a career high with five RBIs to increase his total to 26, most in the majors. He also had an error in the second inning in right field that scored two unearned runs.
Stanton was intentionally walked in consecutive at-bats, so he had to wait until the ninth to make amends for his defensive lapse.
"I knew this game was going to be lost or won because of me," he said. "I was like, `If I get a chance to hit, I’d better take care of it, because of what I did earlier in the game.’ It was definitely in my mind as a duty."
The Mariners lost their fourth game in a row, while the Marlins won for only the second time in the past 11 games.
Johnson singled to start the ninth against Yoervis Medina (0-1), and Christian Yelich beat out a sacrifice bunt for his third hit. Marcell Ozuna’s bunt loaded the bases following the replay review, and Stanton hit a 1-2 slider for his sixth home run.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia hit his second homer for the Marlins, who won despite two errors that led to three unearned runs.
The Marlins’ Nathan Eovaldi pitched six innings and allowed three runs, one earned. He lowered his ERA in seven interleague starts to 1.70.
Steve Cishek (1-0) pitched a perfect ninth.
The Mariners, beginning their first series in Miami since 2005 and their second ever, squandered repeated scoring chances. They went 2 for 11 with runners in scoring position.
Abraham Almonte had a double and a triple and scored twice, but slumping Robinson Cano went 1 for 5 and is 4 for 22 on the Mariners’ trip.
The Mariners’ patchwork rotation again failed to go deep into a game. Chris Young lasted only three innings while giving up seven hits and four runs.
"I just never got in a rhythm," Young said. "I never felt comfortable. I wanted to go deep in the game, and I need to pitch better to do so."
The Marlins overcame some bad baserunning, a problem since the season started. Yelich was an easy out trying to score from second on a two-out infield hit and Saltalamacchia was picked off first.
The Marlins’ fielding was no better. They have allowed 14 unearned runs this season, and they came into the game tied for the most in the majors.
"We’ve been a little sloppy in areas," Redmond said.
— Seattle OF James Jones made his big league debut when he came off the bench in the seventh inning, and he singled in the eighth.
— Yelich had three hits to extend his hitting streak to 12 games.
— Miami’s Casey McGehee improved to 8 for 15 (.533) with runners in scoring position.
— Eovaldi needed 13 pitches to retire Hart in the first inning.
— Redmond, a Seattle native, grew up a Mariners fan and said he probably attended their home opener 15 years in a row.
— LHP Roenis Elias (1-1, 2.16), who earned his first major league win in his most recent outing, is scheduled to start Saturday for Seattle against Henderson Alvarez (0-2, 4.30). Alvarez turned 24 Friday.