MIAMI -- This time, the Florida Marlins finished what they started against Brett Myers.
Hanley Ramirez led off the game with one of Florida's three home runs off Myers, and the Marlins went on to beat the NL East-leading Philadelphia Phillies 5-4 on Tuesday night.
Jorge Cantu hit a two-run homer in the first and Mike Jacobs added a two-run shot in the fifth for the Marlins, who closed within three games of the Phillies and handed Philadelphia just its fifth loss in 20 games.
"It's a big win, just to get the first one, not just of any series but because we're chasing these guys right now," said Florida starter Ricky Nolasco (6-4) who allowed only three unearned runs in six innings. "I think it'll be a good confidence-booster."
Myers might need a boost the next time he faces Florida.
Jimmy Rollins and Pat Burrell homered for Philadelphia, which was bidding for its first five-game lead in the standings since June 6, 2001.
The book on Myers (3-8) this season has been to pounce early, advice the Marlins took to heart. They had him in a 3-0 hole after only eight pitches.
Ramirez opened the game with his 15th home run, fifth this year from the leadoff spot. Myers then walked Jeremy Hermida on five pitches, then offered a first-pitch fastball to Cantu -- who drove it over the left-field wall for a quick three-run lead.
"Collective hitting," Cantu said. "That's what it is."
After that barrage, Myers' first-inning ERA this season rose from 11.08 to 12.21. He lasted 5 1/3 innings, giving up five runs and seven hits while striking out five and walking four, and now has just one win in his last 10 starts.
That win came against the Marlins on May 30, when he again fell behind 3-0 in the first and got bailed out by a 12-run barrage from his teammates.
No such luck Tuesday.
"I pretty much stunk tonight," Myers said. "I didn't shut them down like I was supposed to do. You have to minimize mistakes and I didn't do that."
Still, the Phils' offense nearly got him off the hook again.
Rollins hit a two-run home run in the fifth -- one batter after Ramirez threw a slow, potentially inning-ending roller off Myers' bat wide of first -- to get Philadelphia to 3-2. It was Ramirez's 10th error of the season, the second-most among all major league shortstops.
Jacobs restored Florida's three-run margin in the Marlins' half of the fifth, hitting his 15th home run after Cantu led the inning off with a double.
"They got the big hits early and we didn't," Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. "We got hurt by the home run ball tonight."
Philadelphia kept chopping away, though. Greg Dobbs' RBI single in the sixth drove in Burrell, and Burrell hit his 16th homer of the year off Marlins reliever Joe Nelson with two outs in the eighth.
Nelson then walked Geoff Jenkins, prompting Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez to summon Kevin Gregg. The closer struck out Dobbs swinging to end the eighth, then held the Phillies at bay in the ninth, despite allowing Jayson Werth's leadoff pinch-hit single.
"We score runs," Gonzalez said. "Sometimes they come by the home run, sometimes they come with the doubles. Today we scored enough."
Burrell had dinner Monday night with his former coach at the University of Miami, Jim Morris. The Hurricanes leave Thursday for their 23rd trip to the College World Series. ... Nolasco retired Phillies' catcher Chad Coste in the sixth on a play scored 1-unassisted; he fielded a sharp grounder and ran over to tag the first-base bag himself without a throw. ... Nolasco and Myers are the only right-handers scheduled to start on the mound in this series; Wednesday's matchup pits Florida's Andrew Miller (4-5) against the Phillies' Cole Hamels (6-4), and Thursday has Scott Olsen (4-2) for Florida against Jamie Moyer (6-3). ... Marlins LF Josh Willingham (back) took batting practice Tuesday and could be in extended spring training as early as Wednesday. The Marlins think he could be off the disabled list in 15-20 days if all goes well during rehab. ... The tarp was down for 53 minutes before the game.