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Stanton slam propels Marlins over Mariners

The SportsXchange

MIAMI -- Giancarlo Stanton rounded first base after hitting a walk-off grand slam late Friday night, yelling, "Let's go, here we go" and adding "some curse words in there, too."

The Miami Marlins right fielder said he was "having fun and enjoying the moment," and when he got to home plate, he was greeted by his delirious teammates, who threw water on him and mobbed him.

"That's OK, Stanton said, because: "I threw some punches, too."

The biggest blow, the tiebreaking slam in the bottom of the ninth inning, led Miami to an 8-4 win over the Seattle Mariners at Marlins Park.

It was the fifth walk-off grand slam in Marlins history.

Stanton, who atoned for his three-base error earlier in the game, had five RBIs on the night after starting the night with 21 and in first place in that category in the major leagues.

Pinch-hitter Reed Johnson singled to start the winning rally. Left fielder Christian Yelich got a hit on an attempted sacrifice bunt. Center fielder Marcell Ozuna bunted, and Johnson was thrown out at third. But after a review, it was ruled that third baseman Kyle Seager bobbled the ball. That loaded the bases with no outs and brought up Stanton, who crushed a 1-2 pitch from reliever Yoervis Medina, hitting it 407 feet to left-center field.

Marlins manager Mike Redmond said he was thrilled when the out call at third was overturned.

"Finally, a break," said Redmond, whose Marlins (7-10) won for just the second time in the past 11 games. "(Seager) clearly bobbled it. (Ozuna) was safe."

Seager disagreed with the call.

"I know the rule," he said. "I felt like I caught the ball on the base, and I tried to transfer it over to make a throw to first -- that's where I bobbled it."

Redmond said he received a memo earlier in the day from Major League Baseball that talked about that type of play.

"Just being able to secure the ball and get it out of the hand," Redmond said. "That transfer play has been a hot topic."

Redmond also talked about his decision to have Ozuna bunt because had he been successful, Stanton surely would have been walked with first base empty.

In fact, Stanton, who had only been walked intentionally once all season, drew two such passes on Friday as the Mariners tried to control his red-hot bat.

"We tried to stay away from Stanton," Mariners Manager Lloyd McClendon said. "He's the one guy in their lineup who can really hurt you, but we had no choice (in the ninth)."

Redmond said he wanted Ozuna to bunt to stay out of a double play and to get two runners in scoring position -- even if it meant Stanton got walked again.

"I'd still take my chances with the bases loaded, one out and our four-hole hitter (third baseman Casey McGehee) up with the chance to win," Redmond said.

Seattle (7-9) lost its fourth straight game.

Reliever Mike Dunn, who struggled of late, inherited a 4-3 seventh-inning lead from Marlins starter Nate Eovaldi. But Dunn gave up a double to center fielder Abraham Almonte, who came around to score.

Miami worked around its base-running issues -- shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria was thrown out trying to steal second on a strong throw by catcher Mike Zunino; Yelich was thrown out in a run-down between third and home; and catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia was picked off at first by reliever Joe Beimel.

The Marlins opened the scoring with two runs in the first inning. After Ozuna's one-out double, Stanton and McGehee hit run-scoring singles.

Seattle tied the score 2-2 in the second. After a leadoff hit by right fielder Michael Saunders, left fielder Dustin Ackley grounded a single to right and both runners came around to score when the ball bounced over the glove of Stanton for a three-base error.

"It just jumped up," Stanton said. "I was like: 'Are you serious?' I was shocked."

Miami took a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the second. Eovaldi started the one-out rally with a single and aggressively moved to third on a single to center by Yelich, who extended his hit streak to 12 games. Eovaldi then scored on a sacrifice fly by Ozuna.

Saltalamacchia gave Miami a 4-2 lead in the third with a massive solo homer that reached the upper deck in right field.

Seattle cut its deficit to 4-3 in the fifth when Almonte hit his first triple of the season -- finding the gap in right-center field -- and scored on a groundout by shortstop Brad Miller.

NOTES: Mariners 1B Corey Hart had a 13-pitch at-bat in the first inning against RHP Nate Eovaldi. Had they stayed fair, Hart hit two balls that likely would have been doubles and one that would have been a homer -- all to left field -- before flying out to right. ... The Mariners have three former Marlins on their roster: third-base coach Rich Donnelly, 1B Logan Morrison and C John Buck. Morrison, who broke in with the Marlins, is on the disabled list (hamstring) but made the trip anyway. ... If RHP Jacob Turner (shoulder) stays healthy through Sunday's bullpen session, he will make a minor league rehab start next week. ... The series continues Saturday with Mariners rookie/Cuban defector RHP Roenis Elias starting against Marlins RHP Henderson Alvarez. It will be Elias' debut in Miami, which has a large Cuban-American population.

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