Hanley Ramirez was benched by Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez for not hustling after a ball during Florida’s 5-1 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks last night in Miami.
Last year’s NL batting champion, Ramirez committed a costly error in the second inning after Tony Abreu’s looper dropped near him in short left field. The star shortstop accidentally kicked the ball about 100 feet toward the left-field corner and loafed after it, allowing two runners to score as Abreu advanced to third.
Ramirez, who eventually retrieved the ball, was replaced by Brian Barden the next inning. After the game, Gonzalez confirmed that Ramirez was pulled for not hustling.
Ramirez also was shaken up after fouling Edwin Jackson’s pitch off his left shin in the first inning and was tended to by a trainer. Moments later, he bounced into an inning-ending double play.
“Hanley left the game because we felt — he got smoked in the ankle — but we felt whether he was hurt or not hurt or whatever it was, we felt that the effort wasn’t there that we wanted,’’ Gonzalez said. “There’s 24 guys out there that are busting their butts.’’
Ramirez was not available for comment after the loss, which snapped a four-game winning streak.
“You guys call him a marquee guy,’’ Gonzalez said. “I got 25 guys all wearing the same uniform with all of the same Marlins insignia on the front and I think it’s disappointing if anybody did it, not just one guy.’’
When asked whether there would be any additional punishment for Ramirez, Gonzalez responded: “You mean more embarrassment than being taken out of a major league game?’’
Jackson, who entered the game with a 7.43 ERA, struck out a career-high 12 in eight shutout innings to lead Arizona.
Phillies 12, Pirates 2 — Kyle Kendrick pitched eight impressive innings, Ryan Howard hit a grand slam and had six RBIs, and host Philadelphia improved to 24-13. Jimmy Rollins returned to the Phillies lineup after missing 29 games because of a calf injury.
Rays 4, Indians 3 — Jason Bartlett laid down a bunt to drive in the winning run in the 11th inning as host Tampa Bay improved to a major league-best 27-11.
Dodgers 6, Astros 2 — John Ely pitched his third straight game of six or more innings without issuing a walk, and Casey Blake and Blake Dewitt each drove in two runs as host Los Angeles extended its winning streak to eight games.
Padres 3, Giants 1 — Adrian Gonzalez homered off Matt Cain, and three San Diego pitchers combined on a four-hitter as the host Padres beat San Francisco for the seventh straight time this season.
Rangers 4, Angels 3 — Derek Holland pitched into the sixth inning, Nelson Cruz drove in two runs, and host Texas won the season’s first matchup between AL West rivals.
Reds 6, Brewers 3 — Jonny Gomes’s three-run homer completed a five-run rally in the seventh inning as host Cincinnati won for the eighth time in nine games to remain in first place in the NL Central.
Twins 8, Blue Jays 3 — Justin Morneau homered twice, Delmon Young also went deep, and Minnesota won for just the fourth time in 14 games at Toronto.
Cardinals 6, Nationals 2 — Albert Pujols had three hits and helped fuel a four-run first inning from the cleanup slot as host St. Louis won for only the fourth time in 13 games.
Mets 3, Braves 2 — Mike Pelfrey gave New York a lift with 7 2/3 strong innings and the visitors snapped a five-game losing streak.
Royals 4, Orioles 3 — Kyle Davies gave up two runs in six innings, and Kansas City earned its third win in four games under new manager Ned Yost.
Cubs 4, Rockies 2 — Aramis Ramirez hit a two-run homer in the 11th inning, his first home run in more than a month, to lift Chicago to victory at Wrigley Field.
Athletics 8, Mariners 4 — Kevin Kouzmanoff and Adam Rosales each hit two-run homers as host Oakland snapped a five-game losing streak.
The Tigers-White Sox game in Detroit was postponed by rain. No makeup date was announced.