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Marlins rally, beat Mets in 15 innings

The SportsXchange

MIAMI -- Even when the Miami Marlins win, it feels like a disaster.

The Marlins rallied to beat the New York Mets, 4-3, in 15 innings Monday night at Marlins Park in a game that lasted five hours, 31 minutes and finished at 12:42 Tuesday morning.

But the Marlins' first two-game win streak of their 7-19 season was marred by the loss of star slugger Giancarlo Stanton, who was put on the disabled list after sustaining a right hamstring injury in the 10th inning.

Stanton will have an MRI on Tuesday to determine the severity of the injury, which occurred when he tried to beat out a ground ball at first base.

"I knew it was bad," Marlins manager Mike Redmond said when asked his reaction to seeing Stanton pull up just past the first-base bag. "I knew he was going to have to come out.

"It's a big blow. We are enjoying this win tonight, but reality will set in tomorrow that he won't be in our lineup."

In a game that saw well over 500 pitches, the Marlins appeared to be doomed in the top of the 15th inning, when New York's Lucas Duda lined a one-out double to right-center field, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on a two-out infield single by Ruben Tejada.

The rally came against ex-Mets reliever Jon Rauch.

But in the bottom of the 15th, Greg Dobbs hit a one-out single to center and Justin Ruggiano walked. Facing normal starter Shawn Marcum, who was pressed into bullpen duty due to the length of the game, the Marlins tied the score on Rob Brantly's single to right.

Ruggiano took third base on the play and scored the winning run on a sacrifice fly to center by Nick Green.

"We just couldn't drive any runs in," Mets manager Terry Collins said. "We played all the percentages we could play all night long and nothing worked."

It was the Mets' fifth straight loss, and Collins said he has never seen a group of hitters go from hot to cold so quickly. Collins especially lamented the fact that Mets batters struck out 16 times on the night.

Even so, the Mets nearly won this game in regulation. With New York leading 2-1 in the ninth, normally reliable closer Bobby Parnell gave up a leadoff double to Ruggiano, who advanced to third on a bloop single by Brantly and scored on a sacrifice fly by Green.

Collin Cowgill, the Mets' center fielder when Brantly hit his blooper, said he misjudged the play.

"Off the bat, I took a step back," he said. "When I made the correction, it was too late."

Playing before an announced crowd of 15,605, the Mets dropped to 10-14.

Earlier on, the game looked like a pitching duel between two outstanding young right-handers. Matt Harvey (4-0, 1.56 ERA) lasted 120 pitches and struck out seven. The second-year major-leaguer allowed seven hits, two walks and one run in 5 1/3 innings.

"The jam I got in, the bullpen did a tremendous job," Harvey said. "Tonight was kind of a poor performance by me."

Miami rookie Jose Fernandez (0-2, 4.50 ERA) made just one big mistake -- a 439-foot, two-run homer by former Marlins catcher John Buck, who hit a combined total of 28 homers for Miami the past two years before being traded away in a cost-cutting move.

Fernandez threw just 81 pitches, which is consistent with how many he has been allowed to throw per start this season. In fact, the 20-year-old rookie's highest number of pitches in five total starts is 85.

Fernandez, though he was done after four innings, stayed in the dugout all 15 innings, cheering his team to victory.

"It was great watching your team fight and not give up," Fernandez said. "I love to be there for my teammates. They are there for me, so I was there watching and learning."

NOTES: Mets 3B David Wright did not start Monday due neck stiffness. He suffered the injury in Sunday's game against the Phillies, and it worsened Monday. The Mets are hoping he can return to the lineup Tuesday. ... This marks the second straight time that Wright was scratched from a scheduled start at Marlins Park. Last month while playing for Team USA in the World Baseball Classic, Wright suffered an oblique strain and missed the rest of the tournament. ... Marlins RHP Ricky Nolasco, who got the win Sunday, could be auditioning, in a sense, for other teams. He is making $11.5 million this season, and the speculation is that the low-budget Marlins will deal him closer to the July trading deadline. ... The Mets love the play of their 2011 first-round pick, Brandon Nimmo, who is hitting .337 with a .437 on-base percentage in low Class A ball. New York selected the center fielder out of high school with the 13th overall pick in the draft. One selection later, the Marlins took Fernandez out of high school.

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