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Washington Nationals drop series opener with Miami Marlins, 3-2

Three home runs decided this one, with the three-run blast by Marlins’ shortstop Miguel Rojas in the second the difference in Miami’s 3-2 win in Washington, D.C.

Miami Marlins v Washington Nationals Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

Three home runs accounted for all the runs scored tonight in the nation’s capital, with the Miami Marlins jumping out to a 3-0 lead on a three-run blast by Miguel Rojas off of Patrick Corbin in the top of the second before solo home runs by Yan Gomes, in the bottom of the second, and by Trea Turner, in the bottom of the third, both off Elieser Hernández, made it a one-run game, 3-2. The Fish held on to the lead, however, and kept the home team off the board after the third, taking the series opener from the Washington Nationals.

Corbin vs the Fish: Different seasons, different rosters, different circumstances, etc. but in 2019, Patrick Corbin dominated the Marlins, going (3-0) with a 1.55 ERA, five walks, 29 Ks, and a .165/.204/.216 line against in four starts and 29 IP against the Nationals’ divisional rivals from Miami.

Going into the first start of 2020 against the Fish, Corbin was looking to bounce back after a rough outing against the Orioles last week in Baltimore, in which he gave up five runs on eight hits in five innings of work.

“His location was not good today, he battle through five innings, pitch count got up and we had to get him out of there,” manager Davey Martinez said after that game.

Corbin tossed a scoreless, 14-pitch first, striking out three around a double to start the night tonight, but after a one-out single and walk in the Marlins’ second, the left-hander gave up a three-run home run to left on a 2-0 fastball to Miguel Rojas, 3-0 Miami.

Corbin held the Fish there as the Nationals chipped away at the lead with solo homers in the second and third, and he added two Ks in the top of the fourth for six total.

Corbin picked up his 7th K in a scoreless fifth, and added two more in the sixth for nine total on the night.

A one-out single by Rojas (2 for 3) and a double by Jonathan Villar in the seventh put runners on second and third with one down, and ended Corbin’s night...

Patrick Corbin’s Line: 6.1 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 9 Ks, 1 HR, 102 P, 66 S, 5/2 GO/FO.

Hernández vs the Nationals: Miami’s 25-year-old right-hander, Elieser Hernández was off to a strong start this season, with a 1.84 ERA (3 ER in 14 23 IP), a 2.28 FIP, two walks, 19 Ks and a .170/.228/.283 line against in three starts before tonight’s outing against the Nationals.

Hernández allowed just one home run in those outings, but Yan Gomes hit the second of the year off the Marlins’ right-hander in the bottom of the second, taking a 2-2 fastball to center field in Nationals Park for a solo shot that got the home team on the board, down 3-1 at that point. No. 1 for Gomes this season, and No. 100 of his career.

The third home run of the year and second of the game off the Marlins’ starter went out to right-center off Trea Turner’s bat in the third, another solo shot which made it a 3-2 game.

The one-run lead was intact after Hernández stranded a leadoff single in a 24-pitch bottom of the fifth, which left him at 89 pitches total.

Elieser Hernández’s Line: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 6 Ks, 2 HRs, 89 P, 63 S, 3/2 GO/FO.

Yan Streaking: Yan Gomes started the night with a five-game hit streak going, over which the 33-year-old backstop was 8 for 21 (.381/.409/.524) with a double, triple, and a walk (0 Ks).

Gomes extended that streak with his second inning homer off Marlins’ right-hander Elieser Hernández.

BULLPEN ACTION: Lefty Stephen Tarpley took over for the Marlins with a 3-2 lead in the sixth, and struck out the side in a 14-pitch frame.

Tanner Rainey took over for the Nationals with runners on second and third and one out in the Marlins’ sixth, and walked Jesús Aguilar to load the bases, but threw a 2-2 fastball right by Francisco Cervelli for out No. 2, and got a line drive to left from Brian Anderson for out No. 3. Rainey’d.

Tarpley rolled back out for the seventh and retired the first two batters he faced before Eric Thames singled to center to end the Marlins’ lefty’s outing. James Hoyt came on and hit the first batter he faced, Carter Kieboom, but he struck Victor Robles out to end the threat and keep the Fish up by one, 3-2.

Will Harris worked around a leadoff single for a scoreless top of the eighth.

Brad Boxberger retired the Nationals in order in the bottom of the eighth to keep the Fish lead intact.

Kyle Finnegan took the mound in the top of the ninth and retired the side in order in a 12-pitch frame.

One-time Nats’ reliever Brandon Kintzler came on for the save opportunity and retired the Nationals in order to end it.

Final Score: 3-2 Marlins

Nationals now 9-13