Over the weekend, the Washington Nationals rebounded a bit after their three-game sweep at the hands of the Philadelphia Phillies by taking two of three games against the Florida Marlins at Sun Life Stadium, which is usually a house of horrors for the visiting Nationals.
The wins improves the Nats record to 16-18, keeping them ahead of the New York Mets in fourth place in the N.L. East. Washington continues their road trip Tuesday through Thursday in Atlanta.
In player personnel news, Saturday the Nats placed OF Rick Ankiel on the 15-day disabled list and recalled OF Roger Bernadina from AAA-Syracuse.
Sunday, the Nationals traded a player to be named later to the Kansas City Royals in exchange for outfielder Gregor Blanco. Blanco, a 27 year old left-handed hitter, is a lifetime .258/.358/.324 hitter in parts of three season with Atlanta and Kansas City. Blanco was acquired as a minor leaguer and has not been added to the Nats 40-man roster. He'll report to AAA-Syracuse, according to The Washington Post.
SUNDAY: The Nats came into the game looking to sweep the Marlins in the three-game set, but ran into Anibal Sanchez, who destroyed the Nats bats. Sanchez carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning before giving up singles to Laynce Nix and Michael Morse. Sanchez did not walk a batter and struck out 11 to earn the win in Florida's 8-0 victory.
Livan Hernandez was nowhere near as sharp as Sanchez. The veteran had perhaps his toughest outing of the season, lasting just five innings and allowing six earned runs on eight hits and two walks, striking out just two. He surrendered Gaby Sanchez' fifth home run of the season, a three-run shot, in the four-run fifth inning.
Henry Rodriguez had an interesting inning of relief, giving up a run on three walks and two wild pitches in the eighth inning. He also sent two other balls to the wall behind home plate on the fly, and they returned so quickly to the field no runners could advance.
SATURDAY: Tom Gorzelanny continued his remarkable run and the Nats had nine hits, including a two-run single by Adam LaRoche in the top of the first, to lead Washington to a 5-2 win over Chris Volstad and the Marlins.
Gorzelanny (2-2) allowed just two hits in seven innings. Unfortunately, one of those hits was a two-run homer to catcher John Buck. Despite walking six, Gorzelanny held the Marlins in check the rest of the way. The lefty struck out six and lowered his ERA to 2.87. In six starts, Gorzy has given up just 21 hits in 37 2/3 innings, holding opponents to an incredibly small .163 batting average against.
Roger Bernadina and Ian Desmond, hitting 1-2 in the order, both had two hits. Bernadina also drew a walk, stole a base and scored once, while Desmond scored twice and drove in a run.
Sean Burnett threw a perfect inning of relief and Drew Storen struck out one in his perfect inning, earning his seventh save of the season.
FRIDAY: Adam LaRoche's sacrifice fly in the top of the tenth was enough to push the Nats over the Marlins for a 3-2 win. Jayson Werth drew a walk against Florida reliever Michael Dunn -- his third of the game -- and went to third on Laynce Nix' double to right. LaRoche lofted a fly ball to left fielder Emilio Bonifacio on a 2-1 pitch that was enough to plate Werth win the winning run.
Drew Storen was credited with the win, as manager Jim Riggleman asked his closer to pitch the ninth in a tie game on the road. When Storen got into a little trouble in the tenth in his second inning of work, he brought in Sean Burnett, who got Chris Coghlan to fly out to end the game, earning his fourth save of the season.
Jerry Hairston went 3-for-3 with a walk and an RBI.
Nats starter Jordan Zimmermann had another solid outing, going six innings and allowing just five hits and two walks, striking out six. He did not factor in the decision and the outing lowered his ERA to 4.10. Tyler Clippard struck out six in his two innings of work.