April 11, 2004
The battle of the aces between Josh Beckett and Kevin Millwood proved to be a one-sided affair as the Marlins ace turned in one of his career best performances leading the Marlins to a 3-1 victory and a series sweep of the Philadelphia Phillies.
Philly manager said after the game about Beckett, "He had pretty nasty stuff. He probably would've shut down anyone today, even the '27 Yankees." "He's a good pitcher, he's got great stuff, and great command and a lot of confidence."
Beckett retired the first 9 Philly batters in order but hit Marlon Byrd to start the 4th. After getting out of the 4th with a double play, Beckett went on to strike out the side in the 5th.
Beckett finally gave up the no-hitter in the 6th inning when Marlon Byrd got a single to left field. With David Bell scoring on the single after reaching base due to an error by Miguel Cabrera, Beckett was in his first real jam of the day. He then hit Placido Polanco with a pitch and was forced to face Philly slugger Jim Thome with 2 runners on a 2 outs. Beckett however showed no fear and got Thome to strike out looking on a nasty curve ball to end the inning.
For the game Beckett threw 7 innings giving up only 2 hits and 1 unearned run. He walked 1 and struck out 11 on the day.
In the 8th, Nate Bump and Tommy Phelps combined for a perfect inning and closer Armando Benitez slammed the door for his fifth save of the season.
Offensively for the Marlins RF Miguel Cabrera led the charge with a mammoth homerun shot to straight away center that traveled some 430 feet to give the Marlins the early 1-0 lead.
Backup 2B Damion Easley, who filled in for Luis Castillo provided even more power with a solo homerun in the fifth inning. Easley finished the day going 2-3.
The last Marlin run came courtesy of Luis Castillo who came up as a pinch hitter in the 7th inning and delivered a sacrafice fly which brought home 1B Hee Seop Choi.
Sunday's game concluded the three game set with the Phillies. The Marlins will take Monday as a travel day to head to San Juan, Puerto Rico for a three game series against the Montreal Expos. Game one on Tuesday is scheduled for a 7:05 start time with Brad Penny scheduled to start for the Marlins with Claudio Vargas set to go for the Expos.