Last night's loss, which saw him give up eight hits, three walks and seven runs in five innings pitched, left Washington Nationals' starter Tanner Roark (0-3) against Miami in three starts this season. Roark has allowed 24 hits and 16 runs, 14 of them earned, in 15 innings, over which Marlins' hitters have a combined .353/.429/.500 line against him.
Not pretty. But what is it about the Fish that make them such a tough opponent for the 29-year-old right-hander?
"I don't know," Dusty Baker told reporters after the 7-1 loss.
"We're trying to figure that out too, because I hope that team's not becoming a nemesis to him, because everybody has a couple teams that they've had trouble with and Mike [Maddux] has gone back to the drawing board each time, trying to figure it out and they were hitting him pretty hard."
Roark shrugged it off as "one of those games" and told reporters, including MASN's Mark Zuckerman that he wasn't going to change his approach.
"I’m still pitching my game," he said. "I’m not going to change. I’m still going to attack the hitters and go after them. So I don’t have any answers for you. It is what it is."
The trouble started early for Roark, who hit the first batter he faced and gave up a single to the second, putting two on with no one out in the opening frame, and though he escaped that jam unscathed, a leadoff triple in the second came around to score and a two-out double later in the inning gave Miami all the runs they'd need on the night.
Things got ugly in the fifth, when Roark gave up three walks (one intentional), three singles and four runs, with all four coming with two out. He ended up throwing 39 pitches in the fifth, leaving him at 115 pitches total.
"Hit the first batter and then couldn't control the zone like he usually does and in that inning they got the four runs, I thought that he a chance to get out of there," Baker said, "especially when he got the first two batters, and they got a couple two-out knocks, RBI hits that eluded us most of the day. We had a couple chances to get back in the game, but they got the hits that we didn't get, and so that was really the ballgame."
The Nationals and Marlins split their fourth doubleheader since 2005, as they have the previous three.
"It was a long day, especially the second game on our side," Baker added.
"It's especially long when they're doing most of the scoring and hitting and you're not scoring, and so you've just go to write if off as a bad second game, but it's very difficult to usually sweep a doubleheader, even though that's what we wanted, so we've got to come out tomorrow against a tough [Jose] Fernandez and win the series."
Fernandez starts the day (4-0) with a 1.05 ERA and a .162/.252/.232 line against in 42 ⅔ IP opposite the Nationals in his career, over which he's walked 16 and struck out 52.
Here's the lineup (with Daniel Murphy a late scratch) that will take on the Nationals in the series finale: