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Washington Nationals blow lead in 9th, drop 2 of 3 to Miami Marlins in D.C. with 8-6 loss...

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Maybe they should have left Josh Rogers in a little bit longer... and not drawn the infield in in the 9th... but hindsight, amirite?

MLB: Miami Marlins at Washington Nationals Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Josh Rogers gave up just one hit in five scoreless frames this afternoon, but with a bases-loaded chance in the bottom of the fifth inning, the Washington Nationals went to pinch hitter Andrew Stevenson, who struck out to end the threat with the score 2-0 in the Nats’ favor.

Miami’s Marlins promptly tied it up with two in the top of the sixth, then answered with one run in the top of the seventh, after the Nationals scored one in the bottom of the sixth, and one more in the top of the eighth, after the Nationals pushed two runs across in the home-half of the seventh, 5-4... and 6-4 Nationals final after Josh Bell added a homer in the eighth.

But the Marlins rallied again against closer Kyle Finnegan in the ninth, scoring four in what ended up an 8-6 win for the Fish.

Rogers vs MIA: Josh Rogers followed up a nice debut with the Nationals, after he was let go by the Orioles and signed on in D.C. in June, with another solid start on the last road trip. He held the Pirates to two runs on eight hits in 6 23 IP in what ended up a 4-3 loss in PNC Park.

Rogers got through 6 23 on just 82 pitches, which he said was in part about Bucs’ hitters being aggressive early in counts.

“They were pretty aggressive, and didn’t really get to too many two-strike counts there,” the 27-year-old lefty explained. “Offspeed stuff wasn’t great, the slider was just hard to find all night, couldn’t really put anybody away, but my defense did a heck of a job all night making plays there.”

Rogers worked around a hit and a hit-by-pitch for three scoreless to start today’s game, with five strikeouts from the first eleven Marlins’ hitters he faced, and he worked around a leadoff walk in a 16-pitch fourth, then came back out for the fifth with a 1-0 lead and worked around a two-out hit-by-pitch in an 11-pitch fifth which left him at 73 overall in five scoreless frames.

Josh Rogers’ Line: 5.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 Ks, 73 P, 44 S, 2/4 GO/FO.

Rogers vs D.C.: Marlins’ lefty Trevor Rogers, a 23-year-old, 2017 1st Round pick (13th overall), debuted in 2020’s 60-game COVID campaign, posting a 6.11 ERA, a 4.33 FIP, 13 walks, and 39 Ks in seven starts and 28 IP, but heading into this afternoon’s series finale in the nation’s capital, the southpaw had a 2.73 ERA, a 2.71 FIP, 43 walks, and 138 Ks in 22 starts and 118 23 IP for the Fish.

Today’s start was Rogers’ third against the Nationals this season, after he gave up nine hits, six walks, and five earned runs in 10 IP (4.50 ERA) in the previous two outings, holding Nats’ hitters to a combined .243/.364/.459 line.

His third outing against the Marlins’ NL East rivals began with three scoreless frames, which he completed on 68 pitches, but Jordy Mercer doubled to left on an 0-1 fastball to start the fourth, and two outs later he scored on an RBI single to center by Lane Thomas, who hit one right back over the mound to drive in the first run of the game for either team, 1-0.

Trevor Rogers’ Line: 4.0 IP, 7 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 Ks, 84 P, 59 S, 5/1 GO/FO.

Lane-ge Of Scenery: Heading into today’s game, Lane Thomas had reached base safely in 15 of his last 16 games, with seven multi-hit games over that stretch, going 19 for 65 (.292 AVG) with three doubles, one triple, four home runs, 13 RBIs, 10 walks, and 15 runs scored over that stretch, in which, the Nationals noted in their pregame notes, “he posted a .382 on-base percentage and a .554 slugging percentage.”

Thomas made it 16 of 17 on base with an RBI single in the fourth, and made it eight multi-hit games in the last 17 with a leadoff double in the sixth.

Bullpen Action: Juan Soto (2 for 3) singled and Josh Bell (2 for 3) doubled to lead off the bottom of the fifth, with Marlins’ lefty Steven Okert on the mound.

Bell’s double was a ground-rule double, a catchable ball that center fielder Lewis Brinson lost in the sun.

With runners on second and third and no one out, Okert got a fly to right field from Carter Kieboom and a backwards K from Yadiel Hernández before manager Don Mattingly pulled him and went to the ‘pen for righty Zack Pop, who walked Jordy Mercer to load the bases, and Riley Adams then took the second consecutive walk, and the Nationals went up 2-0.

Alberto Baldonado took over for the Nationals in the top of the sixth and gave up a one-out walk to Bryan De La Cruz, and a game-tying, two-run homer to left by Jesús Sanchez in the next at bat, 2-2 after five and a half.

Lane Thomas doubled off Pop, and Alcides Escobar bunted for a hit in the first two at-bats of the Nationals’ half of the sixth. Mattingly went to the pen again with Juan Soto due up, and Richard Bleier came on and Soto lined one out to left, deep enough to bring in the go-ahead run, 3-2 Nationals after six.

Sam Clay gave up a leadoff single by Sandy León and a one-out double by Jazz Chisholm before the Nationals went to the pen for Mason Thompson, who got a ground back to the mound by Miguel Rojas that bounced off the pitcher for an infield hit as León scored to tie things up at 3-3 after six and a half.

Anthony Bass got the ball in the bottom of the seventh and gave up a one-out single by Yadiel Hernández and a two-out walk to Riley Adams, bringing Ryan Zimmerman to the plate with a runner in scoring position (and the Nationals 2 for 12 w/ RISP and 10 LOB).

Zimmerman sent a chopper to short that Marlins’ third baseman Isan Díaz booted, loading the bases in front of Lane Thomas, who took the second bases-loaded walk of the game by the Nationals, and the club’s fifth bases-loaded walk in two days, 4-3, and 5-3 on an RBI hit to center by Alcides Escobar. That was it for Bass...

Wander Suero’s first pitch after taking over in the eighth went out to left on a leadoff home run by Bryan De La Cruz, 5-4. Kyle Finnegan got the final out of the Marlins’ eighth, leaving one runner on base after taking over for Suero.

Josh Bell crushed a first-pitch curve from right-hander Paul Campbell in the first at-bat of the Nats’ eighth, and bounced his 27th home run of the season off the facade of the 2nd deck in right field, 6-4.

Finnegan returned to the mound in the ninth and issued a leadoff walk to Isan Díaz. Jazz Chisholm reached on a swinging bunt in the next at-bat, to put two on with no one out.

A pitch in the dirt got away from catcher Riley Adams, allowing both runners to advance into scoring position, and an RBI single by Miguel Rojas made it a 6-5 game. Lewin Díaz grounded into a force at second for out No. 1. Bryan De La Cruz stepped in next and sent one out to short that Alcides Escobar knocked down, but a run scored as the Nationals settled for a force at second, 6-6, and 8-6 on a two-run shot to left by Jesús Sanchez.

Dylan Floro came on to try to close out a Marlins’ win, and retired the Nationals in order to end it.

Final Score: 8-6 Marlins

Nationals now 60-86