Any other day, this game is glossed over as a quick and easy loss. But it’s Opening Day, and the excitement, overreactions, and “player X is on pace for Y home runs” jokes are in full force. Unfortunately, a dominant Stephen Strasburg outing and an impressive display from Bryce Harper kept the game in Washington’s favor early, as the beat the Marlins 2-0.
The Marlins had no answer for Strasburg, who needed only 80 pitches to get through 7.0 innings. His only scare came in the seventh, after a Giancarlo Stanton and Placido Polanco single put runners on the corners with one out. Miami promptly fumbled this opportunity away after sloppy base running led the the classic, 7-2-3-4-2 double play.
Overlooked in the loss, was a solid effort from Miami’s pitching staff. Ricky Nolasco took the loss, lasting 6.0 innings, allowing 2 runs on 3 hits and 2 walks. Two of the three hits were back-to-back Bryce Harper solo shots, the only two runs of the game. Chad Qualls and Mike Dunn both worked scoreless innings in relief of Nolasco.
Nationals closer Rafael Soriano picked up his first save of the season, striking out two in the 9th inning, sitting down Giancarlo Stanton looking for the final out.