Hermida's game-changing catch
Lost in all the late-inning commotion of the Marlins’ 12-3 win over the Phillies on Sunday afternoon was a game-changing catch by Jeremy Hermida in the first inning.
The play was one of the biggest of the game.
Marlins right-hander Josh Johnson labored in the first inning. Jimmy Rollins led off with a single and Shane Victorino walked.
Chase Utley worked a nine-pitch at-bat off Johnson, and he was retired on a long fly ball that Cody Ross ran down in deep center field. Rollins tagged and moved to third.
With runners on the corners, Ryan Howard laced a long drive to right. Initially, it looked as if it would smack off the wall for extra bases. But Hermida raced back, jumped, and made a leaping catch. The ball snowconed in the top of his glove, but replays indicated that it was a catch.
Victorino, thinking the ball was trapped off the wall, rounded second. Rollins tagged and scored, but Hermida’s throw to Jorge Cantu at first base doubled-up Victorino, ending the inning. Victorino argued that the ball wasn’t caught, but the inning ended with the Phillies scoring one run, instead of at least three.
“I caught it, right against the wall,” Hermida said. “It was the top of my glove. I felt I caught it. It was kind of tough to see, but it never did hit the wall.”
Victorino’s frustrations boiled over in the seventh inning when he was ejected by home plate umpire Ed Rapuano for disputing balls and strikes. The twist to Victorino’s ejection was the fact he was standing in center field while Wes Helms was at the plate.
Hermida’s defensive gem was one of three double plays that helped Johnson improve his record to 11-2.
“That was one of those first innings again where you are trying to find outs any way you can,” Johnson said. “[Hermida] made a great catch. It was a great play. It did get me settled down to get into a groove.”
– Joe Frisaro