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Washington000101000270

Ramirez's four-hit day leads Marlins over Nationals

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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WASHINGTON -- An empty champagne bottle sat near Florida Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez after a half-dozen people helped him guzzle it.

And why not?

There was plenty to toast Monday: Gonzalez's first game as a big league skipper, and a 9-2 victory over the Washington Nationals, thanks to Miguel Cabrera's four RBI, Hanley Ramirez's four hits and four runs, and Dontrelle Willis' six solid innings.

"It was nice, it really is, but we've still got 161 more," said Gonzalez, 43, who was Atlanta's third-base coach the past four seasons. "It was fun. It was great. It was everything I expected it to be."

It's safe to say he enjoyed his debut as a manager in the majors far more than Washington's Manny Acta did.

"We're tied for second, with the rest of the league who lost today. It's just one game," said Acta, who coached third base for the Mets in 2005-06. "Somebody has to win, somebody has to lose. I lost today."

Not only is Acta 0-1, but his starter, John Patterson, didn't make it out of the fourth inning, and two position players -- a quarter of the starting lineup -- left with injuries before the end of the fifth: shortstop Cristian Guzman (left hamstring) and center fielder Nook Logan (left foot).

"That," Gonzalez said, "is freaky."

Acta's take: "It's not frustrating, it's just weird. We went the whole spring training and were pretty much healthy coming out of Florida, and then two guys go down."

Gonzalez (Cuba) and Acta (Dominican Republic) were the first pair of managers born outside the United States to make their major league debuts in the same game, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Yet while Gonzalez, who took over for NL Manager of the Year Joe Girardi, could enjoy most every moment -- with his teen son, Alex, joining him in the dugout -- Acta's first game since replacing Frank Robinson went about as poorly as possible.

There were the two injuries, plus Patterson (0-1) left after allowing six runs over 3 2/3 innings. It was his first start since July; his 2006 was cut short by arm surgery.

"I didn't have any life on my fastball," the right-hander said. "It was just dead. I fought it. I kept trying to get the ball to jump."

So Acta's day could be summed up by a five-minute span during the fourth inning. First, he jogged to the deepest part of the park to check on Logan. Shortly after making the long trek back to the dugout, Acta turned around to lift Patterson when he allowed Cabrera's two-run, upper-deck homer that made it 6-0.

Dan Uggla reached the upper deck, too -- a rarity at RFK Stadium, the cavernous former home to baseball's Senators and football's Redskins that the Nationals will leave for a new park after this season -- with a two-run homer off Micah Bowie in the seventh.

"It's just the first day, and we've got a long ways to go," Uggla said, "but it was definitely fun."

Cabrera went 3-for-4 with a two-run double plus two walks. Ramirez scored four runs, stole two bases and had two doubles and two singles to match his career high for hits in a game; he did it twice in 2006, when he edged Washington's Ryan Zimmerman for the NL Rookie of the Year award.

Ramirez "starts our fire," Uggla said. "You just got a little glimpse of what he can do."

There was more: Center fielder Alejandro De Aza singled and tripled in his major league debut. And pinch-hitter Aaron Boone drove in his 500th career run with a sac fly in the seventh.

Willis (1-0) allowed one earned run and seven hits, leaving after 100 pitches.

"He kept us guessing," Ryan Church said.

About the only bright spots for Washington were Dmitri Young (two doubles) and Zimmerman, who tripled, singled and made two neat defensive plays -- throwing out a batter from the seat of his pants after slipping while fielding a bunt, and stretching over a rail to reach into the photographers' camera well to make a catch.

"It's going to be kind of a roller coaster, I think, for us this year," Zimmerman said. "We're going to play real well at some points and sometimes we might not play so well. So I think it's important for us leaders and especially the coaching staff not to kind of get too high and too low and kind of keep us level. Manny does that real well."

Notes

  • De Aza wore No. 7, the first Marlins position player with that number since Ivan Rodriguez in 2003.
  • It was the first opening day game in Washington since 1971. The Senators left for Texas at the end of that season, and baseball didn't return to the city until the Montreal Expos moved in 2005. The Nationals began the past two seasons on the road.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis both have a blast of an opening day.  (AP)
Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis both have a blast of an opening day. (AP)

Players of the Game
Florida

M. Cabrera
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 1
RBI 4
Florida

H. Ramirez
AB 6
R 4
H 4
HR 0
RBI 1
 

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Florida Marlins
Hanley Ramirez, SS6441000 .667
Dan Uggla, 2B4111203 .250
Miguel Cabrera, 3B4134201 .750
Mike Jacobs, 1B4011103 .250
Josh Willingham, LF5000015 .000
Joe Borchard, RF3001212 .000
Miguel Olivo, C5120024 .400
Alejandro De Aza, CF4220102 .500
Dontrelle Willis, P1000002 .000
   a- Aaron Boone, PH0001000 .000
    Randy Messenger, P0000000 .000
    Henry Owens, P0000000 .000
   b- Jason Wood, PH1000000 .000
    Jorge Julio, P0000000 .000
Totals37913984  
a-hit a sacrifice fly for Willis in the 7th
b-popped out for Owens in the 9th
Batting
2B - Hanley Ramirez 2 (2, Patterson, Speigner), Miguel Cabrera (1, Patterson)
3B - Alejandro De Aza (1, Bowie)
HR - Dan Uggla (1, Bowie), Miguel Cabrera (1, Patterson)
SF - Aaron Boone (1)
SH - Dontrelle Willis 2 (2)
RBI - Hanley Ramirez (1), Dan Uggla (1), Miguel Cabrera 4 (4), Mike Jacobs (1), Joe Borchard (1), Aaron Boone (1)
2-OUT RBI - Dan Uggla (1), Miguel Cabrera 4 (4), Joe Borchard (1)
SB - Hanley Ramirez 2 (2, 3rd base off Patterson/Schneider, 2nd base off Patterson/Schneider)
Team LOB - 12
Fielding
DP - H. Ramirez-Jacobs, Uggla-H. Ramirez-Jacobs
PB - Miguel Olivo (1)
Florida Marlins
Dontrelle Willis (W,1-0) 6721130 1.50
Randy Messenger 1000010 0.00
Henry Owens 1000000 0.00
Jorge Julio 1000100 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - Dontrelle Willis 100-68, Randy Messenger 16-10, Henry Owens 7-6, Jorge Julio 13-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dontrelle Willis 8-7, Henry Owens 3-0, Jorge Julio 1-1
Batters Faced - Dontrelle Willis 26, Randy Messenger 3, Henry Owens 3, Jorge Julio 3
Washington Nationals
Felipe Lopez, 2B4010010 .250
Cristian Guzman, SS3000001 .000
    Josh Wilson, SS1000000 .000
Ryan Zimmerman, 3B4120001 .500
Austin Kearns, RF4110011 .250
Dmitri Young, 1B4021000 .500
Brian Schneider, C3001002 .000
Ryan Church, LF-CF2000203 .000
Nook Logan, CF10100001.000
    Chris Snelling, LF3000004 .000
John Patterson, P1000012 .000
    Levale Speigner, P1000010 .000
    Micah Bowie, P0000000 .000
   a- Robert Fick, PH1000000 .000
    Jesus Colome, P0000000 .000
Totals3227224  
a-flied out for Bowie in the 7th
Batting
2B - Dmitri Young 2 (2, Willis, Willis)
3B - Ryan Zimmerman (1, Willis)
SF - Brian Schneider (1)
RBI - Dmitri Young (1), Brian Schneider (1)
Team LOB - 6
Washington Nationals
John Patterson (L,0-1) 3.2766321 14.73
Levale Speigner 2.1311310 3.86
Micah Bowie 1322001 18.00
Jesus Colome 2000210 0.00
WP - John Patterson (1)
Pitches-Strikes - John Patterson 80-47, Levale Speigner 41-19, Micah Bowie 18-13, Jesus Colome 30-16
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - John Patterson 4-5, Levale Speigner 3-3, Micah Bowie 2-1, Jesus Colome 2-3
Batters Faced - John Patterson 21, Levale Speigner 13, Micah Bowie 6, Jesus Colome 8
Game Information
Attendance - 40389
Game Time - 2:55
Temperature - 72
Umpires - Home - Mike Reilly, First Base - Jeff Kellogg, Second Base - Eric Cooper, Third Base - James Hoye