Stanton's slam in 9th lifts Marlins over Mets 8-4

Associated Press Modified: May 13, 2012 at 7:17 pm •  Published: May 13, 2012
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MIAMI (AP) — Giancarlo Stanton took a lusty swing with his pink bat, then paused a moment to admire his first game-winning grand slam before settling into a home run trot.

"That's one of those no-doubters," he said. "It's good I could stand and watch it."

Stanton's two-out slam capped a comeback Sunday by the Miami Marlins, who scored six times in the ninth inning to beat an angry Frank Francisco and the New York Mets 8-4.

The walk-off victory was the second in the three-game series for the Marlins, who have won 10 of their past 12 games, thanks mostly to their rotation.

"We're where we're at because of our pitching," said catcher John Buck, who hit a tying homer in the seventh. "It's kind of nice to have the bats speak up a bit."

The Marlins trailed 4-2 when Emilio Bonifacio led off the ninth with his second triple of the game against the struggling Francisco (1-3). Buck walked and pinch-hitter Greg Dobbs followed with an RBI single.

Francisco was then replaced, and he walked slowly toward plate umpire Todd Tichenor, hollering angrily. Manager Terry Collins stepped between Tichenor and Francisco, who was ejected even though he was already out of the game.

Francisco waved his index finger and then his cap at the ump before finally heading to the dugout, his closer's job in jeopardy.

"I thought I was hitting my spots really good, and I didn't get a call," Francisco said.

"Any time you see the other team lose their cool like that, you know we're in the driver's seat," Stanton said.

When Francisco's tirade ended, the Mets' meltdown continued. Manny Acosta replaced Francisco, and Jose Reyes' sacrifice fly made the score 4-all. After a popup, Hanley Ramirez walked on a 3-2 pitch and Austin Kearns was hit by a pitch to load the bases.

Stanton's Mother's Day bat then closed out the victory, launching the first pitch over the left-center wall near the animated home run sculpture for his seventh homer, and sixth this month.

At first, Stanton said, he didn't hear the explosion of noise from the crowd of 26,401.

"It's a weird feeling," he said. "It's more like silence where all you see is the ball flying, and once you start going, you start to hear the big roar by everybody and the excitement."

After rounding the bases, Stanton tossed his helmet 20 feet high before hopping into a sea of jubilant Marlins at home plate. Teammate Logan Morrison gave the 245-pound slugger a celebratory hoist.

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