Thu, 18 Aug 2022

Marlins look to keep Nationals reeling, win series

Field Level Media
03 Jul 2022, 15:19 GMT+10

Manager Davey Martinez is in position to stay around for quite a bit longer with the Washington Nationals.

So, he'd certainly be happier with more wins.

His Nationals enter Sunday afternoon's game against the visiting Miami Marlins on a three-game losing streak.

On Saturday, Martinez had his 2023 contract option picked up by the Nationals.

"This is my home," Martinez said. "I love it here. I love the people I work with here."

He probably just doesn't like facing the Marlins, who've won 10 of 11 meetings between the teams this season, including the first two games of this four-game series after Saturday's 5-3 result.

Martinez, who directed the 2019 championship season, holds a 295-330 record with the Nationals.

Seven times this season the Nationals have lost three consecutive games. Three times, those slumps have extended beyond three games.

Meanwhile, Miami has won three games in a row.

"We're getting a lot of contributions from different guys," Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. "Really from all over the board. We've kind of played solid these last three."

The Marlins will try to extend a winning streak beyond three games for the second time this season.

"It's a combined effort for everybody," shortstop Miguel Rojas said.

The Marlins are amid a stretch of playing 11 road games in a 13-game span.

"It was such a long day (Saturday), and knowing we have to play another two hot games here," Rojas said. "We're trying to win the series."

The Nationals would simply like to split the series after winning two of three games in each of their previous two series. They've managed three runs in each of the past two games.

"We just got to be more aggressive with our swings," Martinez said. "This team has thrown a lot of breaking balls against us. We've got to be ready to hit the fastballs and jump on the fastballs and not sit and wait until we have two strikes and be more aggressive. That's how we score runs."

The Nationals have won four of their last five games that were started by right-hander Erick Fedde (5-5, 4.40 ERA), who heads to the mound Sunday. His 11 walks issued with 17 strikeouts in June outings aren't an ideal ratio.

Fedde took the loss in his only outing this season vs. the Marlins, a 4 2/3-inning stint April 27.

However, he's 4-1 with a 1.70 ERA in eight career starts against Miami. Plus, his 48 strikeouts of Marlins reflect the highest total against any opponent in his career.

The Marlins will go with right-hander Pablo Lopez (5-4, 2.98 ERA), whose control issues have been frustrating. He has walked 24 batters, already approaching a career-high mark.

Lopez's shortest start of the season came in mid-May against the Nationals, lasting three innings and allowing three runs in a no-decision in Miami's eventual 10-inning loss.

Lopez has allowed nearly one home run per game since the beginning of May, though none of those came in the matchup with Washington.

He's 4-2 with a 4.77 ERA in 11 career starts against the Nationals.

--Field Level Media

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