May 17, 2015 5:40 PM
Braves' Miller flirt with no-hitter and beats Marlins 6-0
The Associated Press
MIAMI (AP) Shelby Miller made the Miami Marlins look so bad they fired their manager.
Miller's no-hit bid ended with two outs in the ninth inning Sunday when Justin Bour singled sharply up the middle, and the Atlanta Braves right-hander settled for a two-hitter to beat Miami 6-0.
Two hits weren't enough to satisfy Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria, who fired manager Mike Redmond shortly after the game. Miami is off to a disappointing 16-22 start.
Miller had retired 22 in a row after Marcell Ozuna's second-inning walk when Bour singled on the first pitch, a 95-mph fastball. Dee Gordon reached on an infield single before Martin Prado popped out, completing a three-game sweep for the Braves.
"Obviously things didn't finish as we wanted to, but at the same time we got a sweep," Miller said. "In the end I had a lot of fun."
The Marlins couldn't say the same. Loria left his seat near home plate in the fourth inning, perhaps a sign of the owner's restlessness regarding a team that began the year with high hopes after an aggressive offseason.
Redmond's replacement will be announced Monday. Bench coach Rob Leary also was fired.
"We're just looking for a new voice," president of baseball operations Michael Hill said.
Marlins bats were silent until Bour's hit on the 89th pitch from Miller. As the ball bounded into center field, Miller briefly looked toward the sky actually toward the closed retractable roof at Marlins Park.
The crowd of 23,075 gave the visiting pitcher a standing ovation.
"He put a good swing on it," Miller said. "I wish it would have finished differently."
Bour entered the game as a pinch hitter in the sixth.
"You never want to be the last guy up there when someone gets a no-hitter," Bour said. "So I avoided that."
Braves catcher A.J. Pierzynski said the pitch to Bour was Miller's lone mistake.
"He wanted to throw it in off the plate, and he threw it right down the middle," Pierzynski said. "Those things happen. It stinks, but Shelby pitched a great game."
Miller (5-1) came into the game tied for second in the majors in ERA and lowered it to 1.33.
He benefited from an early replay reversal to flirt with what would have been the first no-hitter for the Braves in 21 years. The reversal erased an infield single by pitcher Henderson Alvarez in the third inning.
Miller only early runner was erased on a double play, and the right-hander faced the minimum 24 batters in the first eight innings. He threw a first-pitch strike to 26 of 29 batters and finished with 94 pitches, 70 for strikes.
"Actually, in the bullpen I didn't feel the best," Miller said. "The breaking pitches were not very good, but in the game they came around and we made some pitches and had some great defensive plays."
It was the fourth complete game of his career, and the second in the past three starts. Miller even shut down major league RBIs leader Giancarlo Stanton, who went 0 for 3 after hitting long homers in each of the previous two games.
Left fielder Todd Cunningham who later confessed he was unaware Miller had a no-hitter going caught a drive by Stanton a step from the wall to end the seventh. That was the Marlins' hardest-hit ball.
Alvarez nearly broke up Miller's bid in the third when he was ruled safe trying to beat out a soft grounder to short. Following a review that took three minutes and five seconds, the call was reversed to end the inning and erase the hit.
Replays on the video scoreboard appeared inconclusive, and the crowd booed the reversal, but the Marlins didn't argue.
Braves rookie RHP Williams Perez will make his first major-league start Wednesday against Tampa Bay, taking the turn of LHP Eric Stults, who was sent to the bullpen.
Stults went 1.4 with a 5.36 ERA in seven starts. Perez went 2-0 with a 1.33 ERA in five starts for Triple-A Gwinnett before being recalled Wednesday.
Braves: Third baseman Rich Gosselin left in the fourth inning with a sprained left thumb. He said he didn't think it was serious.
RHP Mike Foltynewicz (2-0, 4.24) is scheduled to start Tuesday for the Braves when they begin a two-game series at home against Tampa Bay.
RHP Dan Haren (4-2, 3.70) is scheduled to start Monday for the Marlins when they open a four-game series against Arizona and Rubby De La Rosa (4-2, 4.50).