Right-hander Kodai Senga struck out eight batters in his MLB debut, leading the New York Mets to a 5-1 win over the host Miami Marlins on Sunday afternoon
Mets backup center fielder Tommy Pham went 3-for-4 with three RBIs and one walk as New York took three out of four games in this season-opening series. Pham finished a triple short of the cycle
Senga (1-0), who played 11 years of pro ball in Japan, is considered an MLB rookie at age 30. He allowed three hits, three walks and one run in 5 1/3 innings. All eight of his strikeouts came on his best pitch, which has been called a "ghost forkball" because it disappears out of the zone.
Marlins starter Trevor Rogers (0-1) lasted just 4 1/3 innings, allowing four hits, two walks and four runs, three earned. He struck out four
New York opened the scoring with two runs in the first. Pham hit a leadoff single and was erased on Francisco Lindor's would-be double-play grounder, but Marlins first baseman Yuli Gurriel dropped the relay throw
Rogers then threw eight straight balls, walking Pete Alonso and Mark Canha to load the bases. With two outs, Jeff McNeil won a seven-pitch battle with Rogers, beating out a dribbler to the mound. Rogers was then charged with an error as his flip to first got past Gurriel, giving the Mets a 2-0 lead. One run was unearned due to Rogers' error
Miami's failure to complete the double play -- while not an error -- cost Rogers 20 extra pitches as well as the two runs.
Miami cut its deficit to 2-1 in the bottom of the first as leadoff batter Luis Arraez singled, advanced on a wild pitch and scored on Jorge Soler's double.
The Marlins went on in the same inning to load the bases with no outs as Jazz Chisholm Jr. and Avisail Garcia drew walks
But after a mound visit, Senga struck out Gurriel and Jesus Sanchez before getting Jon Berti to line out to right.
The Mets stretched their lead to 4-1 in the fifth as Tim Locastro was hit by a pitch ahead of Pham's homer, which traveled 433 feet to left-center. He hit a 1-0 fastball
Locastro was hit by a pitch again in the seventh. This time, he scored on Pham's double that eluded center fielder Chisholm, who was charging in and just missed the ball. This is Chisholm's first year as an outfielder.
Arraez accounted for two of the Marlins' four hits
--Field Level Media