Stanton OK after getting hit on hand in opener

Stanton OK after getting hit on hand in opener

Stanton OK after getting hit on hand in opener
BOSTON -- Giancarlo Stanton was back in the Marlins' lineup for Wednesday's game vs. the Red Sox after he was hit in the right hand by a pitch in the series opener on Tuesday.

Stanton was hit by a Clay Buchholz changeup in the third inning. He walked slowly to first base, where Miami's trainers and manager Ozzie Guillen checked on the outfielder. After the game, his right hand was heavily wrapped.

With the Marlins struggling offensively, they need Stanton to remain in the lineup. He entered Wednesday hitting .273 with 14 home runs and 42 RBIs in 66 games this year.

"I feel OK," Stanton said. "If it was a fastball, [it would have been] no good."

Still, the Marlins need their right fielder to break out of his 1-for-16 slump on the current six-game road trip. He went 1-for-3 with a run scored in Tuesday's 7-5 loss. In the seventh inning, Stanton had a chance to start a rally with Jose Reyes on third and one out, but he lined out to short left and Reyes was unable to tag and score.

It was just the latest in a string of missed opportunities for Miami. The club is hitting .241 with runners in scoring position and less than two outs.

"We've got problems," Guillen said. "I'm not going to deny it. The problem I think we have right now is with men in scoring position we're very bad. We're not just OK but very, very bad and that doesn't help."

Stanton hit third in Guillen's lineup on Wednesday for the fifth time this season. He was hitting .259 with runners in scoring position this year.

"You get a tendency to change lineups and do this and do that, from experience that doesn't work," Guillen said. "Oh, let's put this guy first, let's put this guy last and at the end of the day you go back home with a loss. I've got to stick up for the guys, got to believe in them, got to make the same lineup if I can to make sure they know we're behind them. I'm going to protect them and be behind them 100 percent."