The Miami Marlins took the field for the first time ever today, withstanding a late rally from their Roger Dean Stadium partners, the St. Louis Cardinals, to notch a 4-3 victory in the 2012 spring opener.
A parade of potential Zephyrs followed Josh Johnson’s 1.2-inning start, including Louisiana natives Wade LeBlanc and Chad Gaudin, who seem to be in a battle for a long relief role in the Marlins’ bullpen. LeBlanc had the upper hand on Monday, pitching out of a bases-loaded jam he inherited in the bottom of the second and going on to toss 2.1 hitless innings with three strikeouts. Gaudin, meanwhile, walked the bases loaded in the fifth, but got Carlos Beltran to pop out to escape unharmed.
Gary Glover chipped in with two scoreless frames, and Jose Ceda retired all three batters he faced before Chris Hatcher ran into trouble trying to protect a 4-0 lead in the ninth. Hatcher allowed a two-run double to Matt Carpenter, and was lifted after walking the potential tying run. Dan Jennings allowed a single to bring the Cards within a run, but retired Adron Chambers on a ground out to preserve the win.
If you’re looking to catch some Marlins spring training baseball on TV, here’s the rundown (all times Central):
Thur, March 8th at New York Mets (12 PM on MLB Network)
Sat, March 10th vs. St. Louis Cardinals (12 PM on MLB Network)
Mon, March 12th at Boston Red Sox (12 PM on ESPN)
Sun, March 25th at Tampa Bay Rays (12 PM on MLB Network)
Sun, April 1st vs. New York Yankees (12 PM on MLB Network)
Mon, April 2nd vs. New York Yankees (6 PM on MLB Network)