Published April 15, 2010
MIAMI (AP) — Jorge Cantu extended his major league season-opening record to 10 games with a hit and an RBI, Josh Johnson struck out 10 in six innings of easy work and the Florida Marlins salvaged a four-game series split by beating the Cincinnati Reds 10-2 Thursday night.
Cody Ross was 3 for 5 with two doubles and three RBIs for the Marlins, who led 8-1 after five innings. Cameron Maybin hit his first home run of the season for Florida, part of a three-hit night, and Dan Uggla finished 3 for 4 with two RBIs and two runs scored.
Chris Dickinson and Jonny Gomes each had two hits and scored a run for Cincinnati. The Reds struck out 14 times.
Johnson (1-1) allowed five hits in six innings and missed tying a career high by one strikeout.
Aaron Harang (0-2) got into big trouble in the fifth, thanks in part to a wild pitch.
Hanley Ramirez led off with a single and the Reds were determined to keep him there, throwing over to first and then calling a pitchout on the second offering to Cantu. On a 2-2 count, Harang's fastball was in the dirt, squirting away from catcher Ramon Hernandez and allowing Ramirez to get to second.
Cantu made the mistake a costly one, lofting the next pitch into deep right-center for a double that extended the record.
Ramirez scored easily and another meager Florida crowd — announced at 12,912, clearly about one-fifth that many — stood and cheered Cantu, who waved from second while umpire Jeff Kellogg threw the ball toward the Marlins' dugout for safekeeping.
Harang allowed eight runs and 10 hits in four-plus innings, his ERA soaring from 4.50 to 7.88.
Before Cantu's run to open 2010, the previous major league record for having at least one hit and one RBI in every game to start the season had been eight, set back in 1921 by George Kelly of the New York Giants, a year after RBIs became an official statistic.
Cantu tied the Marlins' single-season record for consecutive games with a hit and an RBI, set last season by Ramirez. Including last season, Cantu has 14 consecutive games with a hit and an RBI, the longest string since Mike Piazza went 15 straight from June 14-July 2, 2000.
He had a chance earlier in Thursday's game to extend the streak, coming up with one out and runners on first and second in the third inning. Harang was super-cautious on that trip, going outside with three straight fastballs, catching the corner with another for strike one, then walking Cantu on a pitch low and away.
There was a smattering of boos from the small crowd then, all forgotten when Cantu got the hit two innings later.
Ross followed with a two-run double, John Baker added an RBI single to make it 8-1, and Ross knocked in Cantu again with another double in the sixth.
NOTES: Uggla already has two games this season with three hits or more. It took him until July 9 last season to have two of those. ... Harang had allowed only nine hits in his first two starts this season. ... Two-time Olympic beach volleyball gold medalist Misty May-Treanor threw out one of the ceremonial first pitches. May-Treanor, the wife of former Marlins catcher Matt Treanor and still a South Florida resident, returns to the AVP Tour when its season opens this weekend in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.