"The rain couldn't have happened an inning before? It's like, what else can go wrong? I'm beginning to think the baseball gods really do hate us." --Adam Dunn, quoted by MLB Network, June 30, 2009.

THE RESULT: The Florida Marlins scored three times in each of the seventh and eighth innings and took a rain-shortened victory over the Washington Nationals and their beleaguered bullpen, 7-5, before a very small crowd at Land Shark Stadium.

The loss drops the Nats to 22-53-1, last in baseball by nine games. Washington is now 0-8 against the Marlins this season.

Nats starter Craig Stammen pitched well enough through five innings, giving up just one unearned run, due to the first two of Ryan Zimmerman's three errors in the game.

But in the sixth, the 25-year old right-hander gave up a couple of hits to the bottom of Florida's line-up, had a run score on a wild pitch, then gave up a two-run shot to Hanley Ramirez, who took a 90 MPH fastball on the outside corner the other way into the second row of stands in right center field.

For the night, Stammen gave up three earned on six hits -- with no walks -- and two strikeouts in five and one-third innings. He also had a two-run single to help his cause.

Despite the homer, Stammen left with a 5-4 lead, courtesy of his handiwork with the bat, and Adam Dunn's RBI double in the first and two-run homer (20) in the fifth. Zimmerman was aboard for both hits.

But in the seventh, Washington would turn to the bullpen. And once again, they failed to provide relief. Tyler Clippard walked Cody Ross on four pitches, and catcher John Baker moved him up to second. Manager Manny Acta then went to Joe Beimel, and then the floodgates opened.

Pinch-hitter Ross Gload reached on Zimmerman's third error of the night, and Chris Coghlan followed with a walk to load the bases. Beimel struck out Emilio Bonifacio for the second out, which would turn out to be the last out of the game.

Hanley Ramirez singled through the right side to plate two, and Jorge Cantu followed with another single to plate the final run. At that point, the heavens opened up, and the umpires called for the tarp. They would call the game an hour later, sparing the Nats bullpen from further embarrassment.

THE TAKEAWAY: You walk the lead-off hitter in a one-run game, it's not going to be a one-run game for very long.

"You don't need to be an expert in math to know that walks plus errors equals runs," Acta said. "That's basically what happened tonight."

THE GOOD: Middle of the order (bats, not gloves). Zimm went 2-for-4 with two runs, and Dunn went 2-for-4 with the homer, three RBI and a run.

THE BAD: Nick Johnson. 0-for-4 with two Ks. He's now one for his last 25 at bats, and has not walked in that time frame.

THE UGLY: Zimm's glove. What the heck? A bobble and then bad throw on the same play allowing a run to score, then another botcher grounder later in the game that eventually scored. Yuck.

NEXT GAME: Wednesday at 12:10 p.m. for the lunchtime businessman's schedule. If there are 300 paying customers at Land Shark Stadium tomorrow, I'll eat my hat. Jordan Zimmermann (3-3, 4.65) takes on Josh Johnson (7-1, 2.76).