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Giancarlo Stanton, Justin Bour go deep as Miami Marlins sink Los Angeles Angels

By Walter Villa, The Sports Xchange
Miami Marlins' Giancarlo Stanton hits a home run. File photo by John Angelillo/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/d9b021a66279927eac8338f6ff0b6a19/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
Miami Marlins' Giancarlo Stanton hits a home run. File photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

MIAMI -- Giancarlo Stanton may be the most expensive -- and perhaps most dangerous -- two-hole hitter in baseball.

Stanton crushed a 460-foot, two-run homer to center, leading the Miami Marlins to an 8-5 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Friday night at Marlins Park.

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Each of the first three hitters in Miami's lineup -- Dee Gordon, Stanton and Christian Yelich -- belted out three hits, making for a tough lineup. Stanton, though, was the star.

"Whether it's the two-hole, three-hole or four-hole, he's a force," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said of Stanton, who is on a 13-year, $325 million contract and has been hitting second since Tuesday.

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"If Gordon's going to get on base, (Stanton) is going to have a lot of opportunities to swing the bat. And power plays anywhere."

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Indeed, Justin Bour added a three-run homer, his 13th blast of the season, to help power Miami (17-29), which won for just the seventh time in the past 28 games.

The Angels (25-26) have lost three games in a row.

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For Stanton, it was his 12th homer of the season and his second-longest blast of the year. He hit a 468-foot homer on May 7. Stanton's homer against the Angels came on a 3-2 pitch low in the zone.

Stanton, who hadn't homered since May 8, said he doesn't necessarily need to go deep to be happy.

"If I'm hitting the ball hard and having run production, I'm OK," he said. "Home runs? Whatever."

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Stanton's display of power overshadowed Angels star center fielder Mike Trout, a two-time American League MVP who made his Marlins Park debut.

Trout went 0-for-2 but drew two walks, scoring once. Angels first baseman Albert Pujols, who is three homers shy of 600 for his career, went 2-for-4 with a single and a double.

One of the Angels highlights on the night was the first career hit for rookie reserve infielder Nolan Fontana, who slugged a solo home run in the ninth.

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The win went to Dan Straily (3-3), who had his streak of eight straight games allowing four hits or less broken. In 5 1/3 innings, Straily allowed six hits, two walks and three runs, striking out six.

A.J. Ramos picked up a one-out save.

Jesse Chavez (4-6) took the loss, allowing eight hits and five runs in 3 2/3 innings.

Both teams scored in the first inning.

For the Angels, Trout worked a two-out walk and advanced to second on a single by Pujols. Trout scored when Luis Valbuena hit a high fly ball that fell for a double behind left fielder Marcell Ozuna, who appeared to shy away from contact with the wall.

Pujols, coming off a hamstring injury, held up at third, and Martin Maldonado struck out to end the threat.

Straily said he wasn't happy with how he pitched, especially his inefficient, 21-pitch first inning.

"Terrible," Straily said. "I never felt in sync."

Miami took a 4-1 lead in the bottom of the first. Stanton put the Marlins on top by slugging his two-run homer to center.

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"He has spectacular power," said Maldonado, the Angels' catcher. "We left a pitch there, and he took advantage."

But Miami wasn't done with just that Stanton homer.

Yelich doubled off the wall in right, advancing to third when Kole Calhoun bobbled the carom. The next batter, Marcell Ozuna, hit a broken-bat grounder to shortstop Andrelton Simmons. With half the bat floating in the air near him, Simmons still made the catch and threw home, but Yelich slid under the tag.

After Ozuna was thrown out trying to steal second, J.T. Realmuto capped the inning by hitting an opposite-field homer to right.

In the second inning, Straily started a one-out rally by hitting a hard shot off the right leg of Chavez. Straily advanced to third on a double by Gordon and ultimately scored when Chavez walked Ozuna on four pitches.

Los Angeles trimmed its deficit to 5-3 with a two-run, sixth-inning homer by Maldonado that barely got over the glove of a leaping Yelich in center field.

Bour's homer, in the bottom of the sixth, padded Miami's lead to 8-3, stopping the Angels' comeback attempt.

NOTES: Marlins RF Giancarlo Stanton has hit 10 homers in the past three years that have traveled at least 460 feet. ... Marlins CF Christian Yelich (hip) and 3B Derek Dietrich (hip/groin) started despite nagging injuries. ... Miami optioned RHP Drew Steckenrider to Triple-A New Orleans and reinstated RHP David Phelps from the bereavement list. ... Angels OF Cameron Maybin didn't start after leaving Thursday's game due to a sore right knee. ... This was the Angels' first game in Marlins Park. The Angels were the last team in the majors to visit the venue. ... The Angels have nine pitchers on the disabled list. The Angels have used 21 pitchers this year, second most in the majors. ... Saturday's pitching matchup: Marlins RHP Vance Worley (0-1, 6.75 ERA) vs. Angels RHP JC Ramirez (4-3, 3.81). Worley made his Marlins debut last week in a loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

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