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Marlins Make Plays to Hold Off Giants

September 15, 1997|From Associated Press

Cliff Floyd slid home on a 10-foot single to score the tie-breaking run, and Bobby Bonilla tumbled into the stands to make the game-ending catch.

With some frantic scrambling in the late innings Sunday, the Florida Marlins defeated San Francisco, 5-4, dropping the Giants into a first-place tie with the Dodgers in the NL West.

San Francisco scored once in the ninth and had runners at second and third with two out when Barry Bonds lifted a pop foul near the Giant dugout. Third baseman Bonilla outmaneuvered a fan and fell into the first row of seats to make the catch.

"I didn't think Bobby was going to catch the ball," Bonds said. "He made a great play. It just didn't go foul enough."

Floyd broke a 3-3 tie in the eighth when he scored from third on Kurt Abbott's swinging bunt.

"There was no time to think," Floyd said. "You've just got to go."

The Marlins won two of three games in the series between potential first-round playoff opponents.

"This has been a great matchup," San Francisco Manager Dusty Baker said. "I'd like to see them again in the playoffs."

The Marlins took the lead for good in the eighth. With runners at second and third and one out, Abbott topped the ball off the plate, and it landed at the edge of the dirt. Catcher Brian Johnson grabbed it but had no play on Floyd.

"He had a great jump from third," Johnson said. "I was caught in no-man's land."

Pinch hitter Jim Eisenreich followed with a sacrifice fly for a 5-3 lead.

Florida Manager Jim Leyland removed starter Al Leiter after a 74-minute rain delay in the bottom of the fourth.

"I didn't want to take a chance of hurting him at this time of year," Leyland said.

New York 1, Montreal 0--A ninth-inning collision at home plate that led to three Expo ejections overshadowed Dave Mlicki's pitching performance for the Mets at New York.

Luis Lopez homered for the first time in more than a year and Mlicki pitched 8 1/3 shutout innings as the Mets and Expos capped a crazy four-game series. The teams played extra innings Friday and Saturday.

The Mets, who rallied from six runs down in the ninth inning to win Saturday, won despite getting only three hits.

Mlicki (8-11) was on his way to a second career complete game and shutout when David Segui singled with one out in the ninth. Darrin Fletcher followed with a double into the left-field corner.

Segui, attempting to score on the play, crashed into catcher Todd Pratt as shortstop Rey Ordonez's relay throw arrived. Segui was called out by plate umpire Larry Vanover although television replays showed that Pratt dropped the ball and Segui had touched the plate.

"I haven't seen the replay yet, where he has touched the plate, but yeah, we got a break," Pratt said. "There have been some plays where it's been called against us too. That's the way baseball is. It keeps us alive."

Mike Lansing, Montreal Manager Felipe Alou and trainer Lance McLean were ejected following several heated exchanges with the umpiring crew.

Colorado 4, Atlanta 0--The Rockies won for the 15th time in 17 games, completing a three-game sweep of the Braves at Atlanta.

Andres Galarraga's eighth-inning hit broke up a scoreless duel between John Smoltz (14-12) and Pedro Astacio (11-9), who set a Rockies record with 12 strikeouts. Pinch-hitter John VanderWal had a three-run homer in the ninth, his first home run since last Sept. 16.

Before getting swept, Atlanta had won 40 of 56 from Colorado, including 20 of 25 at home.

"We got a chance," Galarraga said about the Rockies' playoff odds. "We just got to keep playing the way we are."

Smoltz gave up four runs and nine hits in 8 1/3 innings, struck out eight and walked three.

Cincinnati 6, Philadelphia 4--Jon Nunnally had three hits, scored two runs and came home on the front end of a double steal as the Reds rallied to beat the Phillies at Philadelphia.

Rookie Brett Tomko (11-6) gave up three runs--two earned--and six hits in 7 1/3 innings, helping Cincinnati beat the Phillies for the eighth time in 11 games this season.

Jeff Shaw pitched a scoreless ninth to convert his 12th consecutive save chance, giving him 37 in 43 opportunities.

Tyler Green (4-4) gave up five runs and six hits in 6 1/3 innings. Cincinnati has won 16 of its last 19 games against the Phillies.

Chicago 3, Pittsburgh 2--The Pirates continued a September slide that may soon drop them out of playoff contention, losing at Pittsburgh as Mark Clark remained unbeaten with the Cubs.

While Chicago won for the eighth time in 11 games, the Pirates have lost five of six.





Player Team Performance Team's Result Mark McGwire St. Louis 2 for 3, 2 runs, 51st homer Win Gary Sheffield Florida 2 for 3, 3 RBIs, home run Win




Player Team Performance Team's Result Pedro Astacio Colorado 8 innings, 4 hits, Win 0 runs, 12 strikeouts Hideo Nomo Dodgers 7 innings, 3 hits, Win 2 runs, 11 strikeouts Mark Clark Chicago 8 innings, 6 hits, Win 2 runs, 8 strikeouts Dave Mlicki New York 8 2/3 innings, 7 hits, Win 0 runs, 7 strikeouts


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