Henderson Alvarez made his 2014 Grapefruit League debut on Friday for the Miami Marlins and tossed three perfect innings in the 7-3 win over the St. Louis Cardinals.
Alvarez, who was credited with the win, struck out two. He needed only 26 pitches in the three innings and 19 of them went for strikes according to MLB.com. This was the first game action for Alvarez since the 2013 season finale when he threw a no-hitter.
Brian Flynn followed and wasn't nearly as effective, giving up two runs on three hits in his two innings. Flynn did strike out four hitters but he likely took a step back in the race for the fifth starter job. Brad Hand, Tom Koehler and Kevin Slowey are all still vying for that spot as well with a few weeks left to go in spring training.
It was a busy day offensively for the Marlins with 10 total hits, five of them for extra bases. Donovan Solano (3), Adieny Hechavarria (2), Giancarlo Stanton (2), Jeff Baker (1) and Brent Keys (2) all doubled in this one according to the official box score. Keys continues to stand out from the crowd and is now hitting .500 for the spring despite very little chance of making the team. His success though could lead to a big league callup during the season if a need arises.
Stanton, who is now 5 for 16 in the Grapefruit League, also knocked in two runs and got up four times. A great sign for the Marlins came via Christian Yelich who entered hitless on the spring but left with a pair of hits. Yelich will hope to keep his bat hot as he gets set to make his first Opening Day roster on March 31.
Up next for the Marlins is a trip to Lake Buena Vista to take on the Atlanta Braves on Saturday. Jacob Turner is set to make the start for Miami in his second appearance of the spring.