Washington, DC – Adam LaRoche went 3-for-4 with a solo home run, three RBI and two runs scored on Friday as the Washington Nationals topped the Miami Marlins, 7-4, in the opener of a doubleheader at Nationals Park.
Mark DeRosa smoked a two-run single and knocked in a run with a bases-loaded walk, while Tyler Moore contributed an RBI for the Nationals, who have won two straight games.
John Lannan (2-0), who was the Nationals Opening Day starter in 2008 and '09, was called up from Triple-A Syracuse for the start. He allowed three runs on four hits in six-plus innings with four strikeouts and five walks.
"I just wanted to go out and go as long as I can and help these guys out because I know it's going to be a long day," Lannan said.
Brett Hayes had an RBI single among his two hits, while Jose Reyes went 2- for-5 to extend his career-best hitting streak to 21 games for the Marlins, who have lost four of their last five.
Brad Hand (0-1) was tagged for seven runs on six hits and six walks in 3 2/3 innings in defeat.
"He was a little wild and got behind the hitters," Miami manager Ozzie Guillen said of Hand's start. "If you are going to pitch in the big leagues you have to throw strikes."
Miami struck first with a run in its first at-bat. Emilio Bonifacio drew a leadoff walk, Donovan Solano singled and Reyes reached on a bunt single to load the bases. Carlos Lee then grounded into a 6-4-3 double play which allowed Bonifacio to cross the plate.
The Nats, however, came right back with three runs in the home portion of the inning. Ryan Zimmerman started a two-out rally with a ground-rule double into right and Jayson Werth walked before LaRoche came through with an RBI single up the middle. Moore followed with a walk to load the bases and DeRosa brought home Werth and LaRoche with a single to left.
LaRoche led off the Washington third with a towering shot onto the lawn beyond center field to extend the lead to 4-1.
Washington put the game out of reach with three more runs in the fourth inning. Danny Espinosa ripped a one-out double into the left field corner, Zimmerman was intentionally walked and Werth drew a free pass to load the bases with two down. LaRoche then drew a walk to force home Espinosa and Moore plated Zimmerman with an infield single in the hole at short before DeRosa capped the inning with another bases-loaded walk, extending the lead to 7-1.
Miami cut the deficit to 7-3 in the seventh. Austin Kearns drew a walk to start the frame and Donnie Murphy ripped a double to put runners on second and third. Kearns was able to score on a wild pitch by Lannan. Pinch-hitter Bryan Petersen walked before Hayes plated Ruggiano with a single to cut the margin to four.
In the eighth, Reyes ripped a one-out double before Lee and Kearns walked to load the bases against Nats reliever Drew Storen. Storen fanned Justin Ruggiano and went to 1-0 on Petersen before being pulled for Michael Gonzalez, who came in and whiffed Petersen to keep the lead intact.
Hayes doubled to lead off the ninth and pinch-hitter Greg Dobbs singled, which signaled the end for Gonzalez. Tyler Clippard came on with runners on the corners and got Bonifacio to ground into a fielder's choice, which scored Hayes. The young righty induced groundouts from Solano and Reyes to lock down his 22nd save of the season.
Murphy left the game in the seventh inning with a left hamstring strain...The Nationals turned three double plays...Washington outfielders Bryce Harper and Michael Morse did not play in the first installment of the twinbill...Earlier on Friday, the Nationals acquired catcher Kurt Suzuki from the Oakland Athletics in exchange for catcher David Freitas...Miami went 3- for-12 with runners in scoring position and stranded eight runners.