All things considering, it was at much as the Miami Marlins could have asked for from a pitcher in Kevin Slowey‘s position.
After all, the 28-year old was essentially a Triple-A cast-off with the Cleveland Indians organization in 2012, and hasn’t throw a pitch on a major league mound since the 2011 season. Forget the fact that he’s playing for the arguably the consensus NL East doormats; going into Spring Training, whether Slowey would even break camp with the team was questionable.
Going from that, to taking on the big bad Washington Nationals machine? In Game 2 of the season against 2012 Cy Young finalist Gio Gonzalez?
That’s a pretty tall order if there ever was one, and while the bad news is that Slowey’s day on the mound ended in a losing effort, the good news is that he didn’t crack on the mound as you might expect. In fact, he did rather well, having gone through the gauntlet that is the Nat’s lineup through 5.1 innings, and allowed just a run on a solo home run, four hits, and a pair of walks.
Until he ran out of gas in the sixth inning, the righty had given up just 3 hits and a pair of walks through five, while striking out four.
So while it wasn’t quite the six shutout innings that Gonzalez put up, Slowey did manage to do a pretty good job matching the Nationals’ ace lefty in putting up zeroes — which, of course, is easier said than done.
Yeah, the quiet Marlins bats couldn’t get anything going, but the underdog team has now gotten a couple of rather pleasant surprises in the pitching performances from Ricky Nolasco and Slowey.
Who would’ve thought it? The starting pitching for this year’s edition of the Marlins were supposed to be a minefield; but instead, it’s been the most consistent element of the team thus far, all the while facing the team that many believes are set for a World Series run this year.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t change the results, and the Marlins still ended up with an 0-2 start for the season that’s more than likely going to be 0-3 after their next game. Still, this season should be all about small victories that move them forward, and Slowey’s performance was definitely one of those.