Chris Volstad pitches Marlins past Nationals 7-1

Published May 01, 2010

| Associated Press

MIAMI (AP) — Chris Volstad pitched a four-hitter for the second complete game of his career and the Florida Marlins broke a three-game losing streak by beating the Washington Nationals 7-1 Saturday night.

Hanley Ramirez snapped a 3-for-20 slump with three hits, including an RBI double and a two-run homer, his third. Jorge Cantu, who began the day tied for the NL lead with 23 RBIs, hit a two-run homer.

Volstad (2-2) struck out eight, walked one, threw 114 pitches and lowered his ERA from 5.79 to 4.45. His only other complete game was a five-hitter last July 8 at San Francisco.

Volstad also had two singles and scored a run.

The tall right-hander had some defensive help. Third baseman Jorge Cantu robbed Ryan Zimmerman of a hit, and left fielder Chris Coghlan threw out Adam Kennedy from foul territory trying to stretch a single in the ninth.

When Volstad struck out Adam Dunn to end the game, there was one last roar from the crowd of 34,886, the Marlins' largest since their home opener.

Craig Stammen (1-1) allowed four runs, three earned, in four-plus innings. He has an ERA of 9.00 in three career starts against Florida.

The defeat ended a three-game winning streak for the Nationals.

Florida took the lead for good in the fourth when two Marlins slid home safe ahead of throws. John Baker singled and scored with a slide when Cody Ross tripled. That made it 2-1.

Center fielder Nyjer Morgan then charged forward to catch Gaby Sanchez's liner and made a wild throw home. Stammen retrieved the ball near the backstop but his throw was too late to get Ross, who scored despite a jarring collision with catcher Ivan Rodriguez that left both players shaken up. They stayed in the game.

The Marlins were 1 for 13 in the series with runners in scoring position before Cantu hit his sixth homer in the fifth off Tyler Walker for a 5-1 lead.

Ramirez hit a homer in the seventh off Walker, who has allowed four in 14 1-3 innings this season.

The Nationals scored in the second inning. Dunn led off with a double and later came home on Rodriguez's sacrifice fly.

Florida tied the game in the third when Volstad led off with a single and scored standing up on a two-out double by Ramirez.

NOTES: The Nationals went 13-10 in April, their first winning full month since September 2007. ... RHP Josh Johnson, scheduled to start Sunday, is 5-0 with a 3.51 ERA in 11 games against the Nationals.

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