for this game

Back-to-back blasts lift Marlins over Padres

May 5, 2007 - 3:43 AM MIAMI (Ticker) -- Josh Willingham and Joe Borchard were not about to allow this one get away.

Willingham and Borchard hit back-to-back homers in the eighth inning to lift the Florida Marlins to a 5-4 triumph over the San Diego Padres on Friday.

It was the third victory in the last four games for the Marlins, who squandered a three-run advantage only to reclaim the lead in the eighth.

Trailing by a run, Florida claimed an improbable 5-4 lead in the eighth against righthander Scott Linebrink (1-1), one of the top setup men in the National League.

Willingham opened the frame with his fifth homer of the season and Borchard made it 5-4 just four pitches later, crushing his fourth homer of the campaign over the wall in left field to give the Marlins the lead.

"(Linebrink) is no slouch out there. He's a quality pitcher so it really says a lot about our team," Borchard said. "For us to do that against him is just incredibly fortunate because he's a tough, tough pitcher."

For Linebrink, who had not allowed a run in 10 of 12 games before Friday, giving up the long ball to consecutive batters was baffling.

"I don't know what to say about it. You don't usually get ambushed like that on the first pitch of an inning," Linebrink said. "I guess I just put (those pitches) in a place where they could get them."

Willingham said he was ready to strike the monemt he stepped into the box.

"I thought he might throw a fastball on the first pitch, and I was so ready for it," Willingham said. "He's a power pitcher who brings it, so you want to go up there thinking fastball and jump on it."

That left the rest up to Borchard, who completed Florida's first back-to-back homer effort since September 30, 2006, when Miguel Cabrera and Willingham accomplished the feat against Philadelphia.

"(Willingham) gives us that spark and then it just carried over to where I was able to get enough of the slider," Borchard said. "Man, that's just good fortune to help the team like that."

Lefthander Taylor Tankersley (1-0) worked 1 1/3 scoreless relief frames to record the win while righthander Henry Owens tossed a perfect ninth for his fourth save.

With their late heroics, the Marlins bailed out starter Dontrelle Willis, who retired 12 of the first 13 batters he faced and carried a no-hitter into the fifth.

But the star lefthander unraveled in the sixth, allowing four runs and failing to hold on for his league-leading sixth win of the season.

"It's a beautiful thing," Willis said. "I'm so proud of the resiliency of this team and how often it finds a way to win. This team has great character - I've said that since spring training."

The Marlins built a 3-0 lead over the first five innings against Padres starter Greg Maddux, who overcame some early jitters.

Hanley Ramirez led off the first with a single and scored two batters later on Cabrera's RBI hit. Willingham tapped a run-scoring groundout later in the frame to make it 2-0.

Florida added another run in the fifth thanks to Ramirez, who opened the inning with a single, stole second and scored from third on Mike Jacobs' bloop RBI hit.

"We seemed to have it, then it looked like it got away from us, then we get it back," Florida manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "These guys never give up. If you battle and battle, good things happen."

But the Padres finally solved Willis in the sixth, collecting three hits and drawing two walks in the frame to chase the Marlins' ace.

Marcus Giles led off with a single and advanced to third on a hit from Jose Cruz Jr. Brian Giles walked to load the bases, and Khalil Greene drew San Diego within 3-1 with a sacrifice fly.

After Josh Bard walked to load the bases again, Mike Cameron gave the Padres their first lead of the contest, lofting a long triple into right-center field to clear the bases and make it 4-3.

"What upsets me are the walks, not (Cameron's) hit," Willis said. "I tip my hat to him. I'll challenge him like that every time and if he gets it, he gets it. But when I walk someone, that makes it tough because I have control over that."

Willis worked six innings, allowing four runs, four hits and four walks with five strikeouts. Ramirez matched a season high with four hits while Cabrera and Miguel Olivo each added two hits for the Marlins.

Greg Maddux, in search of career win No. 336th, surrendered three runs, eight hits and one walk in six frames, striking out five.

"It looked like we might get one, but (the Marlins) came out swinging against (Linebrink) in the eighth inning and they got us," San Diego manager Bud Black said. "It was a game of back and forths."








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    SAN DIEGO 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 0 0 4 4 1
    FLORIDA 2 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 x 5 12 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: SDG - GREG MADDUX, HEATH BELL (7TH), SCOTT LINEBRINK (8TH) AND JOSH
    BARD
    FLA - DONTRELLE WILLIS, KEVIN GREGG (7TH), TAYLOR
    TANKERSLEY (7TH), HENRY OWENS (9TH) AND

    May 4 9:40 PM
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    Padres vs. MarlinsMay 4 9:33 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY JOE BORCHARD (4) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN THE
    8TH OFF SCOTT LINEBRINK.
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN DIEGO 4, FLORIDA 5
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: M OLIVO (.222, 1-FOR-3)

    Padres vs. MarlinsMay 4 9:26 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY JOSH WILLINGHAM (5) TO RIGHT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 8TH OFF SCOTT LINEBRINK.
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN DIEGO 4, FLORIDA 4
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: J BORCHARD (.215, 0-FOR-3)

    Padres vs. MarlinsMay 4 9:25 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    TRIPLE BY MIKE CAMERON SCORED JOSE CRUZ JR, BRIAN GILES AND
    JOSH BARD.
    SITUATION: 4 RUNS IN, M CAMERON ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN DIEGO 4
    FLORIDA 3 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR SAN DIEGO: K KOUZMANOFF (.117, 0-FOR-1, BB)

    Padres vs. MarlinsMay 4 8:42 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY KHALIL GREENE SCORED MARCUS GILES.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, B GILES ON FIRST, J CRUZ JR ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN DIEGO 1
    FLORIDA 3 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR SAN DIEGO: J BARD (.245, 0-FOR-2)

    Padres vs. MarlinsMay 4 8:38 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MIKE JACOBS SCORED HANLEY RAMIREZ.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M JACOBS ON FIRST, M CABRERA ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN DIEGO 0
    FLORIDA 3 BOTTOM, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: J WILLINGHAM (.293, 0-FOR-2, RBI)

    Padres vs. MarlinsMay 4 8:21 PM
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    Padres vs. MarlinsMay 4 8:14 PM
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    Padres vs. MarlinsMay 4 8:01 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND OUT BY JOSH WILLINGHAM SCORED DAN UGGLA.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, M CABRERA ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN DIEGO 0
    FLORIDA 2 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: J BORCHARD (.222, 3 HR, 12 RBI)

    Padres vs. MarlinsMay 4 7:17 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MIGUEL CABRERA SCORED HANLEY RAMIREZ.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M CABRERA ON FIRST, D UGGLA ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN DIEGO 0
    FLORIDA 1 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: M JACOBS (.307, 3 HR, 10 RBI)

    Padres vs. MarlinsMay 4 7:14 PM