The Miami Marlins were unable to establish a season best winning streak at two as they were defeated by the Washington Nationals 6-1 on Wednesday night at Marlins Park. Ricky Nolasco got the start for the Marlins and lasted six innings, but gave up four runs on seven hits. On the positive side, he did strike out six Nationals and did not allow a walk.
The trouble started in the second inning though for Nolasco as he gave up singles to the first two Nationals batters of the inning. Both of those runners would come around to score before the inning was done. Nolasco then allowed a home run to Nationals catcher Kurt Suzuki in the fifth inning. It was the third home run Nolasco has given up on the season, all of them coming off of Nationals bats. Bryce Harper continued to absolutely own Ricky Nolasco. As a matter of fact, after the game, Harper was seen folding Nolasco up and packing him in his duffel bag for the trip home. He pounded out three more hits off the right hander including a lead off double in the sixth when he scored the fourth run of the night for the Nationals. Harper finished the game going 4 for 5 with a run scored and an RBI despite being so ill that he required an IV before the game and was seen vomiting between innings.
The Marlins offense returned to form after having scored eight runs the previous night, they were held to just a single run on seven hits. The Marlins run came in the fifth inning when Chris Valaika doubled to open the inning and then came around to score on a single to right by Donovan Solano. There was a bang bang play at the plate as Valaika executed a beautiful slide to get around the tag by the Nationals catcher. Replays showed he may have actually been out on the play and the Nationals briefly disputed the call. The Marlins have now scored just 32 runs in 15 games which ranks them last in the majors in that category.
On the injury front, Adeiny Hechavarria was a late scratch from the lineup with elbow soreness. Valaika started in his place at shortstop, which meant he has now started a game at each of the four infield positions this season. First baseman Joe Mahoney was activated from the 15-day DL and made a pinch hit appearance going 0 for 1. Finally, Giancarlo Stanton is expected to rejoin the lineup on Thursday after sitting out the last six games with a shoulder contusion.
Up Next: The Marlins travel to Cincinnati to take on the Reds starting on Thursday. The matchup will be rookie sensation Jose Fernandez (0-0) going for the Marlins against Tony Cingrani (0-0) for the Reds who will be making his first major league start after just being recalled from the minors.