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Florida (72-69) «000020011481
Washington (60-82)000000010152

Marlins' Sanchez pitches gem, stays perfect vs. Nats

CBSSports.com wire reports
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WASHINGTON -- Anibal Sanchez says the opponent doesn't matter.

Still, the right-hander allowed four hits in 7 2/3 innings to lead the Florida Marlins over Washington 4-1 Saturday, a victory that improved Sanchez to 5-0 against the Nationals.

"I tried to make them swing at my pitches," Sanchez said. "I threw everything at every hitter."

Sanchez (12-9) gave up one run, struck out four and walked none. He has a 2.29 career ERA in 13 starts against the Nationals, going 2-0 this year. Wilson Ramos' RBI double in the eighth was the first earned run Sanchez allowed against Washington in 23 1-3 innings.

Sanchez was coming off of his worst performance of the season, giving up seven runs and seven hits in four innings at Philadelphia on Monday. He quickly showed he was back in form against the Nationals. Sanchez didn't allow a runner until Michael Morse's double in the fifth inning.

"You can tell with Anibal by the third inning if his breaking ball is working and around the plate -- he's going to have a good game," Florida manager Edwin Rodriguez said. "Whenever he's throwing his secondary pitches for strikes, chances are he's going to have a good game."

Washington (60-82) dropped a season-high 22 games under .500 and clinched a fifth straight losing season after yet again failing to make a dent against Sanchez.

"He's been good every time we've seen him," Nationals manager Jim Riggleman said. "We're going to have to figure something out on him."

Emilio Bonifacio gave Sanchez all the offense he needed with a two-run single in the fifth inning. Logan Morrison added an RBI single in the eighth inning to extend his hitting streak to 10 games. It was the 31st straight game he's reached base safely, the longest active streak in the majors.

"I'm sure since you just told me that I'm not going to get on base tomorrow," Morrison joked with a reporter after the game. "I don't think about it. I have no idea."

Clay Hensley pitched the ninth inning for his second save in five chances

Jason Marquis (2-8) also had a strong start, but couldn't match Sanchez. Marquis, who had surgery to remove bone chips from his elbow in May and was on the disabled list for 3½ months, gave up two runs and five hits in six innings. He struck out eight -- his highest total since Sept. 1, 2008 -- and walked one.

"Today was probably the best I've felt since the surgery," Marquis said. "I had good bite on my slider. It was the first time all year I really had a good feel for it."

Neither pitcher allowed a hit through the first four innings, and the only runner to reach was Morrison on first baseman Adam Dunn's fielding error in the first inning.

Chad Tracy led off the fifth inning with a grounder up the middle. Mike Stanton followed with another single and Marquis walked Cameron Maybin to load the bases with no outs. After a pair of strikeouts, Bonifacio singled to center on a 3-2 pitch.

Morrison nearly added another run for the Marlins, but Nationals rookie second baseman Danny Espinosa made a diving stop and threw out Morrison by a step to end the inning.

Dunn's second error, on Brad Davis' ninth-inning grounder, scored an unearned run. Maybin led off with a triple.

Notes

  • Marlins RHP Josh Johnson, who missed Friday's scheduled start with shoulder and back problems, didn't throw in the bullpen on Saturday. Rodriguez said that if Johnson isn't able to throw on Sunday, he'll likely miss his next turn Wednesday against Philadelphia. If Johnson is unable to pitch, Florida would use several relievers Wednesday.
  • Nationals reliever Collin Balester got his legs tangled up and fell to the ground during a pickoff attempt to second base, without throwing the ball. No balk was called. "That was the weirdest thing that ever happened to me," Balester said. "I looked at the replay, and it just looked like moving parts. I didn't know what I was doing."
 
Copyright 2015 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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The dominant pitching of Anibal Sanchez continues to overpower the Nationals, whom have yet to beat Sanchez this season.   (AP)
The dominant pitching of Anibal Sanchez continues to overpower the Nationals, whom have yet to beat Sanchez this season. (AP)

Players of the Game
Florida

E. Bonifacio
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 2
Florida

A. Sanchez
IP 7.2
H 4
ER 1
BB 0
K 4
 

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Florida Marlins
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Emilio Bonifacio, 3B5122011 .306
Logan Morrison, LF5011013 .311
Hanley Ramirez, SS4010022 .301
Dan Uggla, 2B3000111 .281
Chad Tracy, 1B4120002 .250
Mike Stanton, RF4110033 .244
Cameron Maybin, CF3110120 .237
Brad Davis, C4000023 .255
Anibal Sanchez, P3000023 .118
    Jose Veras, P0000000 .000
   a- Scott Cousins, PH1000001 .375
    Clay Hensley, P0000000 .000
Totals36483214  
a-grounded out for Veras in the 9th
Batting
2B - Emilio Bonifacio (6, Stammen)
3B - Cameron Maybin (3, Batista)
RBI - Emilio Bonifacio 2 (8), Logan Morrison (14)
2-OUT RBI - Emilio Bonifacio 2 (4)
SB - Emilio Bonifacio (8, 2nd base off Marquis/Ramos), Brad Davis (1, 2nd base off Batista/Nieves)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Uggla-H. Ramirez-Tracy
E - Anibal Sanchez (4, Throwing)
Florida Marlins
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Anibal Sanchez (W,12-9) 7.2411040 3.35
Jose Veras (H,15) 0.1000000 2.95
Clay Hensley (S,2) 1100110 2.45
Pitches-Strikes - Anibal Sanchez 100-68, Jose Veras 4-2, Clay Hensley 21-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Anibal Sanchez 12-6, Jose Veras 1-0, Clay Hensley 1-1
Batters Faced - Anibal Sanchez 26, Jose Veras 1, Clay Hensley 5
Washington Nationals
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Danny Espinosa, 2B3000110 .310
Ian Desmond, SS4000001 .282
Ryan Zimmerman, 3B4020000 .300
Adam Dunn, 1B4000023 .266
Roger Bernadina, LF4000012 .259
Michael Morse, RF3010010 .297
Nyjer Morgan, CF3110001 .257
Wilson Ramos, C3011000 .279
    Justin Maxwell, PR0000000 .133
    Miguel Batista, P0000000 .125
    Tyler Clippard, P0000000 .500
Jason Marquis, P1000000 .111
   a- Alberto Gonzalez, PH1000000 .282
    Craig Stammen, P0000000 .237
    Collin Balester, P0000000 .000
   b- Willie Harris, PH1000001 .190
    Wil Nieves, C0000000 .208
Totals3115115  
a-popped out for Marquis in the 6th
b-grounded out for Balester in the 8th
Batting
2B - Michael Morse (10, Sanchez), Wilson Ramos (5, Sanchez)
RBI - Wilson Ramos (4)
2-OUT RBI - Wilson Ramos (3)
Team LOB - 4
Fielding
DP - Zimmerman-Dunn-Desmond
PB - Wilson Ramos (1)
E - Adam Dunn 2 (10, Misplayed grounder)
Washington Nationals
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Jason Marquis (L,2-8) 6522180 6.60
Craig Stammen 1211020 5.39
Collin Balester 1000120 3.09
Miguel Batista 0.1110000 4.00
Tyler Clippard 0.2000020 2.98
WP - Collin Balester 2 (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Jason Marquis 99-67, Craig Stammen 22-14, Collin Balester 21-10, Miguel Batista 9-6, Tyler Clippard 9-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jason Marquis 8-2, Miguel Batista 2-0
Batters Faced - Jason Marquis 24, Craig Stammen 5, Collin Balester 4, Miguel Batista 3, Tyler Clippard 2
Game Information
Attendance - 17941
Game Time - 2:52
Temperature - 73
Umpires - Home - Laz Diaz, First Base - Wally Bell, Second Base - John Hirschbeck, Third Base - James Hoye