MIAMI (AP) — Jose Urena got hit around by the Atlanta Braves, and the Miami Marlins’ dwindling wild-card hopes took another big knock, too.
Urena allowed five runs in three innings for the Marlins in a 6-3 loss to the Atlanta Braves on Thursday night.
“Right now every game we play is the most important of the season,” Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto said. “We have a chance to do something special but we have to get hot.”
Miami trails the Mets and Giants by five games for the NL wild-card spots.
Matt Kemp hit two home runs and drove in three to power the Braves.
“He’s a really good player,” Braves interim manager Brian Snitker said. “He’s a big, strong man and when he swings that bat it goes.”
Kemp is hitting .400 (22 of 55) in his last 14 games and has 33 home runs and 104 RBIs on the season, his highest totals since the 2011 season when he was NL MVP runner-up with 39 homers and 126 RBIs.
“It’s been good,” Kemp said. “Honestly I wish we could be in the playoffs right now and in a playoff race. It would be way more fun doing those type of things and being in a race, but for us to finish strong and show everybody what the offense and what this team is capable of going into the final weeks of the season is very important for next year.”
Freddie Freeman singled in the third inning to extend his hitting streak to 26 games and drove in two runs for the Braves, who have won six straight for the third time this season.
Atlanta’s Josh Collmenter (3-0) pitched seven innings and allowed two runs.
Mauricio Cabrera pitched the ninth for his fifth save in six chances.
Ender Inciarte, Wednesday’s hero with the game-saving catch at the New York Mets, went 2 for 4 with a triple and scored twice.
J.T. Realmuto homered for the Marlins, who cut the deficit to 6-3 on an RBI double by Martin Prado in the eighth. Justin Bour flew out with two on to end the threat.
Kemp’s multihomer game was the 10th of his career and third this season.
Kemp’s second homer was a solo shot to left field in the sixth. It was caught on a bounce by Miami Heat forward Justise Winslow , who also threw out the ceremonial first pitch.
“Who comes to his first baseball game in Miami and catches a baseball?” Kemp said. “That’s pretty cool.”
Freeman’s streak is the longest of his career and the longest active streak in the majors. It is the fifth-longest for the Braves since moving to Atlanta in 1966. Freeman has also reached base in 42 consecutive games.
Freeman’s two-run triple and Kemp’s two-run homer broke the game open in the third, giving the Braves a 5-0 lead.
“You get down early it’s tough on your club,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. “To be down five after a couple innings puts you in a bind.”
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