|Washington (37-72) «||0||0||0||3||4||0||1||4||x||12||14||1|
WASHINGTON -- The Nationals are starting to make come-from-behind victories a habit.
Ryan Zimmerman finished a double short of the cycle, and Ronnie Belliard's tiebreaking single in the eighth inning helped Washington rally from a six-run deficit and beat the Florida Marlins 12-8 on Thursday.
The Nationals broke an 8-all tie with four runs in the eighth, completing a series sweep and winning their season-best fifth consecutive game. Jorge Sosa (1-0) escaped an eighth-inning jam and pitched the ninth to earn the win.
Washington also scored six runs in the eighth inning for a 6-4 victory on Tuesday, and have come from behind for 20 of its major league low 37 wins.
"Nobody in that room has any doubts they can come back," said interim manager Jim Riggleman. "The feeling is that it's six runs, but it's early, and if we just get a couple and now, all of a sudden, maybe get that other club thinking 'Well, here they come again.'"
Zimmerman continued his recent hot streak with two singles, a triple, a homer and three RBI. He also walked to reach base in all five plate appearances, and is hitting .449 in his last 13 games.
"We've been playing good baseball," Zimmerman said. "We don't ever think we're out of it, and we want to do that for the rest of the season."
Alberto Gonzalez sparked Washington with a two-run double in the fourth, and Zimmerman added a two-run shot in the fifth as the Nationals cut the lead to 8-7. Elijah Dukes, who had three hits and drove in four runs, then tied it with a solo homer in the seventh off Brian Sanches.
Cristian Guzman started the go-ahead rally with a leadoff walk, and Nyjer Morgan sacrificed him to second before Belliard singled to center off Luis Ayala (1-4) for a 9-8 lead. Zimmerman added an RBI triple to give Washington a 10-8 edge. Dukes hit an RBI single, and the Nationals scored another run on Brendan Donnelly's balk.
"We just keep coming back and winning some games," Belliard said. "Winning five in a row -- it feels good."
Belliard had a pair of hits and scored twice for the Nationals. Josh Bard also drove in a run.
Washington starter Craig Stammen lasted just 1 2/3 innings, and Riggleman used seven pitchers. Riggleman had said before the game that he wouldn't use Mike MacDougal as the closer after he pitched four consecutive days.
Stammen's early exit forced Riggleman to go to the bullpen often, and the six relievers combined to give up just two runs on five hits in 7 1/3 innings.
The Nationals also came up with the timely hits that the Marlins couldn't. Washington went 7 for 12 with runners in scoring position.
"They did a great job of swinging. They're playing really well right now," Florida starter Chris Volstad said. "We've got to put this series behind us. That's really all you can do."
|The Nationals walk off the field with a sweep and a season-best five-game winning streak. (Getty Images)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Chris Coghlan, LF||5||2||2||1||0||0||1||.270|
|Nick Johnson, 1B||3||0||1||1||1||1||1||.297|
|Hanley Ramirez, SS||5||2||3||1||0||0||4||.344|
|Jorge Cantu, 3B||4||0||0||1||0||0||7||.282|
|Dan Uggla, 2B||4||0||2||0||1||1||1||.235|
|John Baker, C||5||1||1||2||0||0||3||.269|
|Cody Ross, CF-RF||4||1||0||0||1||0||3||.257|
|Jeremy Hermida, RF||4||1||1||0||0||1||2||.253|
|Luis Ayala, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Brendan Donnelly, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a- Ross Gload, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||.281|
|Chris Volstad, P||2||1||1||0||0||1||0||.125|
|Tim Wood, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|b- Josh Johnson, PH||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||.159|
|Brian Sanches, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Emilio Bonifacio, CF||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||.246|
|a-popped out for Donnelly in the 9th|
|b-walked for Wood in the 6th|
|2B - Chris Coghlan (14, Stammen), Hanley Ramirez (30, Stammen), Dan Uggla 2 (17, Kensing, Sosa)|
|HR - John Baker (8, Kensing)|
|SF - Nick Johnson (3), Jorge Cantu (2)|
|RBI - Chris Coghlan (22), Nick Johnson (47), Hanley Ramirez (70), Jorge Cantu (60), John Baker 2 (32)|
|2-OUT RBI - Hanley Ramirez (33), John Baker 2 (13)|
|SB - Hanley Ramirez 2 (18, 3rd base off Stammen/Bard, 2nd base off Kensing/Bard)|
|Team LOB - 9|
|DP - H. Ramirez-Uggla-N. Johnson, Cantu-Uggla-N. Johnson|
|E - Jorge Cantu (8, Misplayed grounder)|
|Brian Sanches (BS,2)||1.1||1||1||1||3||2||1||1.17|
|Luis Ayala (L,1-4)||1||2||4||4||2||1||0||4.99|
|IBB - Dunn by Luis Ayala|
|Pitches-Strikes - Chris Volstad 87-52, Tim Wood 7-3, Brian Sanches 37-19, Luis Ayala 21-11, Brendan Donnelly 7-6|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Chris Volstad 6-3, Tim Wood 1-1, Luis Ayala 1-0, Brendan Donnelly 1-1|
|Batters Faced - Chris Volstad 23, Tim Wood 3, Brian Sanches 8, Luis Ayala 6, Brendan Donnelly 3|
|Nyjer Morgan, CF||4||0||1||0||0||1||0||.304|
|Ronnie Belliard, 2B-1B||4||2||2||1||1||0||1||.214|
|Ryan Zimmerman, 3B||4||3||4||3||1||0||0||.300|
|Adam Dunn, 1B||3||1||1||0||2||1||3||.281|
|Willie Harris, PR-2B||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||.232|
|Josh Willingham, LF||4||2||1||0||1||0||2||.303|
|Elijah Dukes, RF||4||2||3||4||0||1||0||.247|
|Josh Bard, C||4||0||1||1||1||2||3||.247|
|Alberto Gonzalez, SS||4||0||1||2||0||1||1||.269|
|Jorge Sosa, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Craig Stammen, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.217|
|Logan Kensing, P||2||0||0||0||0||0||1||.000|
|Ron Villone, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Jason Bergmann, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a- Jorge Padilla, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Tyler Clippard, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Sean Burnett, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Cristian Guzman, SS||0||1||0||0||1||0||0||.314|
|a-fouled out for Bergmann in the 6th|
|2B - Josh Willingham (23, Volstad), Alberto Gonzalez (10, Volstad)|
|3B - Ryan Zimmerman (1, Ayala)|
|HR - Ryan Zimmerman (23, Volstad), Elijah Dukes (7, Sanches)|
|SF - Elijah Dukes (2)|
|SH - Nyjer Morgan (7)|
|RBI - Ronnie Belliard (13), Ryan Zimmerman 3 (74), Elijah Dukes 4 (36), Josh Bard (21), Alberto Gonzalez 2 (22)|
|2-OUT RBI - Elijah Dukes (14), Josh Bard (8), Alberto Gonzalez 2 (6)|
|SB - Ronnie Belliard (2, 2nd base off Ayala/Baker)|
|CS - Josh Bard (1, 2nd base by Ayala/Baker)|
|Team LOB - 7|
|E - Josh Bard (5, Throwing)|
|Jorge Sosa (W,1-0)||1.2||1||0||0||0||0||0||1.69|
|WP - Logan Kensing (3)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Craig Stammen 45-26, Logan Kensing 32-23, Ron Villone 17-7, Jason Bergmann 9-6, Tyler Clippard 21-7, Sean Burnett 6-4, Jorge Sosa 31-19|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Logan Kensing 4-5, Ron Villone 1-0, Jorge Sosa 1-4|
|Batters Faced - Craig Stammen 12, Logan Kensing 13, Ron Villone 4, Jason Bergmann 2, Tyler Clippard 5, Sean Burnett 2, Jorge Sosa 6|
|Attendance - 23691|
|Game Time - 3:29|
|Temperature - 69|
|Umpires - Home - Adrian Johnson, First Base - Jim Wolf, Second Base - Gary Cederstrom, Third Base - Field Culbreth|