Bottom of the 9th, 1 out. Bases loaded and the game is tied. Dan Uggla at the plate – and with one swing it was over. The dust settled and the Marlins came out on top with another dramatic, walk off win. Last time it was Cody Ross against the Reds, this time it was a grand slam walk off from Dan Uggla who hit a no douber for his 19th on the year.
Chase Utley may be the NL leader among 2B for the All Star game, and he may be an early MVP candidate (note: of his 21 homeruns, only 5 where hit on the road) but it was Dan Uggla who flexed and showed his value to his team tonight.
Uggla has been on a tear since the calendar changed to May. He has hit 15 home runs and has raised his average from .245 to .299. He has helped keep his team in games and given them a chance to win – despite Mike Jacobs and Josh Willingham being injured at times. Despite a massive slump from Hanley Ramirez (who seems to be snapping out of it). The one constant has been Dan Uggla and tonight, he displayed that.
The Marlins are now only 2 games in back of Philly. Sure, the Phillies took 2 games from the Marlins on their recent road trip, but in Philly the odds were in their favor as they need a small park to keep their offense engaged and their pitching from losing games. They have one of the league’s better home records (21-13), but are pretty good on the road, too (17-15). Yet, their stats tell a different story as on the road they aren’t as potent an offense as they are at home. The Marlins have shown they can generate runs from time to time, but they do have more home runs than the Phillies and are tops in the NL over the Phils in that department.
Jorge Cantu, on fire of late, hit two more home runs tonight putting his season total up to 14. But the night belonged to Uggla who hit the grand slam to break the 2-2 tie the Phillies had with Cantu and brought home the win.
After all, this isn’t the first time Uggla ended a game for the Marlins: