In the final start of what was a fantastic rookie campaign, Jose Fernandez again shut down the Braves’ offense, and even helped himself with the bat as the Marlins beat the Braves 5-2 on Wednesday night.
Fernandez pitched seven innings, allowing five hits, and striking out five. Then, in the bottom of sixth, Fernandez hit his first career home run, as he drilled a Mike Minor pitch into the “The Clevelander” in left field. That was final blow in what was a rough outing for Minor, who allowed eleven hits in six innings, four earned runs, and two home runs. The other homer was a two run bomb to center off the bat of Giancarlo Stanton.
The Braves weren’t without their chances against Fernandez. Jordan Schafer led the game off with a double, but was left stranded at third. Then in the fourth inning, the Braves would load the bases with two outs, before Elliot Johnson fouled out to first. The only Braves’ run off Fernandez came via an Evan Gattis home run to left in the sixth inning. They would get another run in the ninth on an Elliot Johnson RBI double, after Andrelton Simmons tripled with one out.
Lastly, the aforementioned home run from Fernandez set off a benches-clearing “incident” between the two teams. He seemed to apply a little bit of extra admiration to the home run, and there were even rumors that he spit on 3rd base during his extremely slow home run trot. This is something to monitor heading into Thursday’s action.
The two teams conclude this four game set tomorrow afternoon. The Braves will send Freddy Garcia to the mound, as they have opted to give Alex Wood some extra rest. The Marlins were scheduled to counter with Nate Eovaldi, but he was scratched and Miami is going with left-hander Brian Flynn. First pitch is set for 12:40 ET.