Baseball / Sports

St. Louis Cardinals' Jon Jay shakes hands with teammate A.J. Pierzynski after Jay hit a two-run home run against the Miami Marlins during the fourth inning on Monday, Aug. 11, 2014, at Marlins Park in Miami. (Hector Gabino/El Nuevo Herald/MCT)

Stanton's pair of homers fuel Marlins' 6-5 win over Cardinals

MIAMI -- Giancarlo Stanton was robbed of a two-homer game Sunday in Cincinnati when Jay Bruce reached over the wall to grab his deep drive in the eighth inning.

There was no denying Stanton on Monday as the slugging right fielder became the Marlins' all-time leader with 13 multi-homer games while powering Miami to a 6-5 win over the Cardinals at Marlins Park.

Stanton, known for hitting homers in bunches, has five in the past five games and a National League-leading 31 for the season. He wasted little time against Shelby Miller, belting a belt-high fastball, the second pitch he saw, the opposite way into the Marlins' bullpen in right field for a two-run homer in the first. Christian Yelich was on with a leadoff double.

With two outs and no one on in the third, Stanton straightened out a slow 2-2 curveball from Miller for one of his longest shots yet in Marlins Park. It flew 470 feet to the right of the Budweiser bar and bounced just short of the windows in left-center on the promenade.

It was Stanton's seventh homer of 450 feet or longer this season, according to ESPN Stats & Info. No one else has more than two.

The homers tied Hanley Ramirez for second on the Marlins' career list with 148. Dan Uggla leads with 154. Ramirez had 12 multi-homer games for the Marlins. Stanton has four this season.

The biggest cheer of the night for Stanton came when he made another highlight-reel catch in right, on a full-extension leap onto the warning track to haul in Kolten Wong's bid for extra bases. He got up smiling.

Stanton's hitting seemed to be contagious. In smacking out 11 hits, the Marlins ended a run of 12 games without cracking double digits. That was one short of the club record, from April 6-22, 1997. Yelich had three hits, including a bunt single, and Casey McGehee and Jarrod Saltalamacchia had two apiece.

During the recent hitting drought the Marlins averaged 3.2 runs a game. That wasn't going to be enough this night.

Staked to a 3-0 lead, Tom Koehler gave it all back while allowing four consecutive two-out hits in the fourth. Most damaging was a two-run homer by Jon Jay.

Koehler had overcome command trouble at the onset. After walking two of the first three batters he faced, the right-hander settled in and retired eight in a row before giving up his first hit, a leadoff double in the fourth by Matt Holliday.

Holliday scored the first Cardinals run on A.J. Pierzynski's single, preceding Jay's homer.

The Marlins quickly regained the lead in the bottom of the inning when Adeiny Hechavarria sliced a triple into the right-field corner following Saltalamacchia's leadoff single. Yelich smacked a two-out single to center to make it 5-3.

Koehler needed considerable help from his fielders just to make it through five shaky innings.

In addition to Stanton's catch, Jordany Valdespin ranged far to his left to make a diving stop of an Oscar Tavares drive to end the second. Yelich made a long dash to make a sliding catch at the left-field line to put out Matt Carpenter.

Hechavarria contributed a gem with a diving stop behind second on a Matt Adams grounder. He had enough time to get up, race to the bag for a force and throw to first to complete an energetic double play that ended the fifth. Valdespin later turned a liner into another double play.

Back-to-back singles to open the sixth concluded Koehler's night. Chris Hatcher bailed him out, preserving the lead and leaving Koehler in line for the win. Relievers Mike Dunn, Bryan Morris and Steve Cishek did their part to help Koehler improve to 8-9, though Cishek gave up two runs in the ninth.

(c)2014 Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)

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Distributed by MCT Information Services

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