Marlins 6, Phillies 3

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MIAMI (AP)—A long night came down to one swing by Hee Seop Choi, ensuring more frustration in Florida for the Philadelphia Phillies.

Choi hit a tiebreaking three-run homer in the eighth inning, and the Florida Marlins beat the Phillies again Wednesday night, 6-3.

Philadelphia endured two rain delays and erased a three-run deficit but still lost—their 13th consecutive defeat in Miami, including six this year.

“It’s unbelievable,” said Pat Burrell, who had two RBIs for the Phillies. “We just haven’t been able to rise to the occasion, and if we’re going to beat these guys, that’s what we’ve got to do.”

The Marlins have won three in a row for the first time since May, and they’ll bid for a series sweep Thursday. Florida remains in contention in the NL East, which may make the front office more inclined to upgrade the roster before the trading deadline Saturday.

Mike Lowell’s two-out double off Brett Myers put the Marlins ahead 3-0 in the third inning, but the Phillies rallied and tied it on Burrell’s two-out RBI double in the eighth.

In the bottom of the inning, Tim Worrell (3-4) hit Lowell with a pitch and walked Jeff Conine with two outs. Choi then hit his 15th homer, his first since June 9.

“The worst part of it is the timing,” Worrell said. “We battled back, we tied the game and we were maybe a couple of outs from having a chance to win it.”

With the hour late and the weather wet, perhaps two thousand hardy fans remained from the original crowd of 17,404. They roared and chanted Choi’s name.

“It was very exciting,” he said. “Long game, but I’m happy. Everybody’s happy.”

Rain fell during much of the game and delayed play twice—for 29 minutes between the third and fourth innings, and for 44 minutes before the bottom of the seventh.

Juan Pierre had two hits and scored twice for the Marlins. Josias Manzanillo (3-2), their fourth pitcher, retired the final four batters.

Florida extended its franchise record for consecutive home victories against one opponent. Philadelphia manager Larry Bowa said Tuesday he was embarrassed by the streak, but his mini-outburst failed to inspire a better performance by the Phillies.

They let the Marlins score five runs with two out.

“They’re uncanny in their two-out hits, especially against us,” Bowa said. “I don’t know how they do against the rest of the league, but they get them against us.”

The Marlins climbed just one game above .500, but they’re 10-1 against the Phillies this season and have won 22 of the past 25 games in the lopsided rivalry dating to last year.

“They might be frustrated,” Pierre said. “But they’ve got a bunch of veteran guys and a good manager. It might get in their heads, but I wouldn’t bet on it.”

Florida’s Brad Penny left with no outs in the fifth because he was struggling to catch his breath on a muggy, 80-degree evening. He allowed five hits and two runs in five-plus innings.

Myers allowed six hits and three runs in five-plus innings.

Florida scored in the first when Pierre singled, took third on a single by Luis Castillo and scored on a double play.

Pierre and Castillo again both reached in the third with two out, and Lowell doubled them home.

Notes

The Marlins have won a season-high five games at home. … The Phillies’ Mike Lieberthal grounded out with runners at first and third to end the second. He’s batting .132 (12-for-91) with runners in scoring position, worst in the NL. … Myers reduced his ERA against the Marlins to 6.53. … Philadelphia’s David Bell went 0-for-3, extending his slump to 2-for-26.

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