Game 35 Review- Nationals 5 Marlins 3

APTOPIX Marlins Nationals Baseball

Washington Nationals’ Bryce Harper watches his two-run home run during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Miami Marlins, Friday, May 13, 2016, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

Nationals Record 22-13

WP- Treinen (3-1)   LP-  Barraclough (2-1)   SV-  Papelbon (10)

HR-  Drew (2), Harper (11),  Heisey (4)

STARS OF THE GAME

Third Star- Jose Lobaton

The Nats’ backup catcher may be hitting only .194 on the year, but he did a great job for Washington in the eighth spot in the lineup last night. Lobaton went 1-2 with a run scored and walked twice.  His sixth inning two out looping single to left field kept the inning alive, which allowed Stephen Drew to come to the plate and hit a game tying two run home run off of Miami’s Bryan Morris.

Second Star-  Dusty Baker

The Nats’ affable skipper pushed the right buttons on Friday night.  He used his bullpen masterfully in the sixth to squelch a Marlins rally, getting key contributions from veterans Yusmeiro Petit and Oliver Perez to keep Miami from scoring even after the visitors had loaded the bases with no outs being recorded by tough-luck starter Gio Gonzalez.

Later, Baker’s choices of Drew to pinch-hit in the sixth inning and Chris Heisey to do so in the eighth resulted in the fifth and sixth pinch-hit home runs on the  year for the Nationals.

Star of the Game-  Bryce Harper

“Miami” Bryce did it again, going 2-2 with two walks and a go ahead two run home run in the seventh inning that led the Nationals to victory. Five of Harper’s 11 home runs in 2016 have come against the Fish, and his 20 career round trippers against Miami is the most he’s had against any opponent.

Valiant in Defeat- Tom Koehler

The lanky Marlins’ starter wasn’t dominant as he allowed six hits and walked five batters, but he was a clutch performer with men on base as he allowed only one run in his 5.2 innings pitched.  Koehler’s best moments may have come in the bottom of the first, when he got out of a two on, out jam by retiring red-hot Daniel Murphy on a popout and struck out Ryan Zimmerman to keep the Nats off of the board.

NOTES

Washington’s two pinch-hit homers marked the third time a team has had two or more pinch-hit blasts in a game in 2016.  The St. Louis Cardinals performed the feat the two other times it has been done, first getting pinch-hit blasts from Jeremy Hazelbaker, Aledyms Diaz and Greg Garcia in a 7-4 win against Atlanta on April 8th and then getting pinch-hit homers from Brandon Moss and Matt Adams on April 15th as the Cards defeated Cincinnati.

Washington’s six pinch-hit homers on the year is the most the Nats have had in a season since 2013 when Washington had a Nats’ high eight.  The 2006 team also had eight pinch-hit home runs.

The Nats allowed two unearned runs in an ugly top of the fifth inning, making this the first game in the 2016 season where Washington has allowed more than one unearned run. The Nats last allowed multiple unearned runs in a game back on September 5, 2015 when both of Atlanta’s runs were of the unearned variety in Washington’s 8-2 win.

Jonathan Papelbon earned his 359th career save last night as he retired the only two batters he faced. The game was only the 16th, and the fourth since 2011, where Papelbon has earned a save while pitching less than one inning.

 

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