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Marlins Drop Season Opener To Rival Braves, Lose 2-1

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MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) – The revamped Miami Marlins couldn't overpower the rebuilding Atlanta Braves, losing 2-1 on opening day Monday.

The Marlins did scare in the seventh, but two Atlanta relievers combined to escape a bases-loaded, none-out jam.

Jason Grilli also pitched a perfect ninth after being minted the Braves' closer following the trade of All-Star ninth-inning arm Craig Kimbrel to San Diego.

The Marlins have hopes of ending an 11-year playoff drought following an uncharacteristic offseason spending spree, but little went right for the home team. The sellout crowd's mood briefly turned sour in the second inning when the game was halted for 16 minutes because of rain - a first at 3-year-old Marlins Park, which has a retractable roof.

The showers were unexpected, and fans booed when play was halted while the roof closed.

The opener was a flop for Miami in more ways than one. Speedy newcomer Dee Gordon appeared to have a chance at a bunt single in the eighth inning, but he stumbled leaving the batter's box, went face down in the dirt and became an easy out.

Braves newcomer Nick Markakis drove in both of their runs.

Julio Teheran (1-0) allowed eight hits but only one run in six-plus innings. The Marlins' Henderson Alvarez (0-1) gave up two runs in seven innings and scored their only run.

Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton went 1 for 4 and made a baserunning mistake in the fourth, when he was thrown out trying to go from first to third on a two-out single.

The game was Stanton's first since his beaning Sept. 11 - and since he signed a record $325 million, 13-year contract.

Trailing 2-1, the Marlins bunched three consecutive singles to load the bases starting the seventh. But Luis Avilan retired Jarrod Saltamacchia on a 5-2-3 double play, and Jim Johnson got Adeiny Hechavarria to foul out.

Teheran was helped by his defense. Shortstop Andrelton Simmons was alert to cover third on a single to left and tagged out Stanton trying to advance from first. Second baseman Jace Peterson made a bare-handed grab as the middleman on a double play in the fifth.


Jose Fernandez was the Marlins' opening day starter a year ago, but he was relegated to a different role Monday - lead cheerleader.

Fernandez is still recovering from Tommy John surgery and out until at least July. He threw a bullpen session before the game.

"As you can just imagine, I'd like to go pitch," he said before the game. "But I can do my part, giving water to the pitcher and being loud."


Introductions by Michael "Let's Get Ready to Rumble" Buffer began with Marlins players on the ballpark concourse, and one by one they walked through the stands and made their way to the field as they traded high-fives with fans.


Marlins newcomer Mat Latos, who grew up in South Florida, will make his first start for his hometown team Tuesday.

"It's a little added sense of pride," he said. "I might be a little anxious, a little nervous."

RHP Latos went 5-5 with a 3.25 ERA in an injury-shortened 2014 season with Cincinnati. LHP Alex Wood, who went 11-11 last year with a 2.78 ERA, is scheduled to start for Atlanta.

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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