Tanner Roark had a 3.15 ERA and a 3.00 FIP with 20 walks (1.70 BB/9) and 84 Ks (7.15 K/9) in 33 games, 11 starts and 105 2/3 IP for Washington's Triple-A affiliate, the Syracuse Chiefs, before he was called up to make his MLB debut on August 7th in Nationals Park. In nine games and 22 2/3 IP for the Nationals, all in relief before tonight, the 26-year-old Texas Rangers' '08 25th Round pick acquired in the July 2010 trade for shortstop Cristian Guzman, had a 1.19 ERA and a 2.30 FIP with seven walks (2.78 BB/9) and 19 Ks (7.54 K/9). Roark made his MLB debut as a starter tonight. He had a 2-0 lead before he even took the mound.
Denard Span singled off Miami Marlins' starter Nathan Eovaldi to start the second game of three to be played in Marlins Park this weekend, extending his career-best hit streak to 18 games over which he was 29 for 70 after the hit, and he scored the easy way when Ryan Zimmerman crushed a 1-2 slider and sent a two-run home run out toward the Red Grooms' home run sculpture in center field in the Marlins' home for a 2-0 lead and his 18th blast of 2013. Jayson Werth doubled off the lime green outfield wall in center, 418ft+ from home plate in the next at bat, but he was stranded at third three outs later at the end of a 27-pitch frame by Miami's right-hander.
Tanner Roark needed nine pitches and some help from his third baseman, who made a jumping, twisting, overhand throw to first base to get Donovan Solano for the second out of a 1-2-3 bottom of the first inning.
Anthony Rendon battled for seven pitches before singling to short right field where Donovan Solano dove to at least knock the grounder down before firing a rushed throw past first. A wild pitch by Nathan Eovaldi allowed Rendon to take second, but he was stranded there two outs later with the Marlins' starter up to 45 pitches after two innings in Miami. Giancarlo Stanton grounded back to the mound. Justin Ruggiano struck out. Logan Morrison popped out to Ryan Zimmerman in foul territory off third. Six up, six down for Roark. 10-pitch second. 19 overall in 2.0 scoreless.
Ryan Zimmerman was 2 for 2 with two home runs after he took a first-pitch fastball from Nathan Eovaldi to right-center field for an opposite field blast that made it 3-0 early in Miami. HR no.20 of 2013 for the Nationals' third baseman. Jayson Werth reached on an infield single/error then went first-to-third on a single to right by Adam LaRoche. Werth was caught off third on a grounder back to the mound by Ian Desmond, but the veteran outfielder stayed in a rundown long enough for both runners to advance into scoring position. Wilson Ramos missed a 97 mph 3-0 fastball outside, but flew to right on the next pitch from Eovaldi for a two-run opposite field double that made it 5-0 Nats after two and a half in Marlins Park.
Tanner Roark was up to 33 pitches and nine straight batters retired after a 14-pitch, 1-2-3 3rd vs the Marlins.
Sam Dyson took over on the mound for Miami in the top of the fourth. Ryan Zimmerman battled for nine pitches in his third at bat, with one down, but popped out leaving him 2 for 3 on the night. Jayson Werth's pop to short left ended a quick inning for the Marlins' reliever. Chris Coghlan lined a 2-2 fastball back up the middle for the first hit of the night off Tanner Roark. One out later, Christian Yelich punched a single through the right side of the infield to bring Giancarlo Stanton up with two on and one out in the Marlins' fourth, but Stanton rolled one weakly to second to start a 4-6-3 inning-ending DP. 13-pitch frame for Roark, 46 pitches after four scoreless.
The Nationals went down in order against Sam Dyson in the top of the fifth. Tanner Roark needed 11 pitches to retire the Marlins in order in the bottom of the inning and complete his fifth scoreless frame after 57 pitches. 5-0 Nats.
Tyler Moore singled to left in the first at bat of the sixth for the Nationals' first hit off Dyson then went first-to-third on an opposite field single to right by Anthony Rendon, who was 3 for 3 on the night after the hit. Roark struck out trying to bunt Rendon over, but Denard Span connected for a sac fly in the next at bat that scored Moore from third for a 6-0 lead after five and a half. Juan Pierre singled with one down in the Marlins' sixth in a pinch hit appearance, lining to left field for a hit that dropped in front of a charging Tyler Moore. One out later, Pierre took third on a single to right by Donovan Solano, but Solano was thrown out trying to take second on the plate and Roark was through six scoreless on 71 pitches after a 14-pitch frame.
Jayson Werth and Adam LaRoche hit back-to-back doubles off Marlins' right-hander Chris Hatcher with LaRoche's 18th driving Werth in from second after Werth's 17th two-base hit of 2013. 7-0 Nationals after six and a half.
Tanner Roark's Line: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 Ks, 71 P, 47 S, 6/2 GO/FO.
Ross Ohlendorf took over in the bottom of the seventh. Christian Yelich singled in the first at bat, and took second three outs later, when Logan Morrison K'd swinging but reached first on a wild pitch. Adeiny Hechavarria drove in the Marlins' first run of the game with a two-out single to left, then Jeff Mathis went to center and it was 7-2 Nationals over the Marlins after seven.
Zach Phillips gave up a two-out single to Denard Span in the Nationals' eighth, so Marlins' skipper Mike Redmond went to his pen for Arquimedes Caminero against Ryan Zimmerman, who popped out to end the top of the inning. Tyler Clippard got a pop to short left that Ian Desmond handled for the first out of the home-half of the eighth. Donovan Solano grounded back to the mound for the second out. Christian Yelich grounded out to second base. 7-2 Nationals after eight. Caminero gave up a two-out infield single by Ian Desmond in the Nationals' ninth and walked Corey Brown to put two on for Tyler Moore, whose single to center drove both runners in for a 9-2 Nats' lead.
Drew Storen took the mound in the bottom of the inning. Jake Marisnick grounded back to the mound. ONE! Justin Ruggiano lined a one-out single over second. Logan Morrison lined out to Eury Perez in right. TWO!! Adeiny Hechavarria fell behind 0-2 and K'd chasing a slider outside. Ballgame. 9-2 final.
Nationals now 72-69