A year ago, Jason Marquis was on the disabled list, recovering from elbow surgery and sitting with a 20.52 ERA after three outings. The Nationals had signed him to a two-year, $15 million contract, and it looked like that deal was going to be a financial albatross for them through 2011.
Instead, Marquis is tied for the National League lead in wins with five. He's got a 3.54 ERA, and has pitched through six innings in all but one of his eight starts. And he's showing once again that he can be an offensive weapon, as well.
Marquis went 2-for-3 Sunday, driving in two runs with an opposite-field double in the first inning of the Natonals' 8-4 win over Florida. He's hitting .333 for the year, and has driven in three runs.
He is a lifetime .202 hitter, but with short outings and surgery robbing him of at-bats last year, he hit just .136. This year, he's looking like a weapon on offense again.
"I think there's some guys who really don't take interest in it, or don't care as much, but to each their own," Marquis said. "I know over the last eight years or so, it's definitely helped me win 10-plus games, with what I do at the plate, whether it's moving a runner over, taking an extra base or driving runners in. Not only does it help your team win, but personally, it helps you, too."
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