WASHINGTON (AP) — Jazz Chisholm Jr. hit a three-run homer, and the Miami Marlins defeated the Washington Nationals 6-1 on Thursday night in the opener of a four-game series.
Jake Burger added his 28th home run of the season for Miami, which climbed back to .500 after losing eight of 10. The Marlins (67-67) entered three games behind San Francisco for the NL’s final wild card.
“We knew coming into this series it was big, and now we’re flipping the page on August and going into September tomorrow,” Burger said. “Obviously, from here on out, every single game is huge.”
Braxton Garrett (8-5) and three relievers combined on a three-hitter.
Miami’s Luis Arraez singled twice, raising his major league-leading average to .349. With his 47th multihit game, Arraez tied Seattle’s Julio Rodríguez for third, trailing Atlanta’s Ronald Acuña Jr. at 57 and the Los Angeles Dodgers’ Freddie Freeman at 54.
Washington lost for the fourth time in five games. The Nationals went 17-11 in August, their first winning month this season.
Garrett (8-5) allowed one run and three hits over six innings. The Marlins are 19-7 in the left-hander’s starts this season.
JT Chargois, Steven Okert and A.J. Puk each followed with a hitless inning. Miami pitchers struck out just two, matching their season low of Aug. 14 against Houston. The two strikeouts by Nationals batters was the team’s fewest since Aug. 4 last year at Philadelphia.
Joan Adon (2-1) yielded Josh Bell’s single leading off the fifth and hit Burger with a sinkerball. Chisholm drove a curveball into the Nationals’ bullpen in right for a 5-0 lead.
“He threw me a really good changeup the pitch before, so I was sitting on changeup,” Chisholm said. “He hung a curveball. I can hit a curveball that’s right down the middle, so it was there and I took it for a ride.”
Adon surrendered five runs in five innings. While he only walked one, Adon threw two wild pitches and hit two batters.
“He just couldn’t repeat his mechanics,” Washington manager Dave Martinez said. “His arm was lagging a little bit on some pitches. That’s why I think he got a little wild. We’ll get it back and get him squared away.”
Burger homered in the ninth against Joe La Sorsa, who was recalled from Triple-A Rochester.
Miami took the lead on Bryan De La Cruz’s RBI double in the first and added a run on Arraez’s double-play grounder in the fourth.
Washington scored on CJ Abrams’ sacrifice fly in the fifth.
Marlins: OF Jorge Soler (right hip tightness) was out of the lineup for the second day in a row. … X-rays were negative on LHP Andrew Nardi, who left Wednesday’s game against Tampa Bay after taking a line drive off his hand. “That ball was hit very hard and it wasn’t a glancing blow,” manager Skip Schumaker said. “It hit him. The fact we’re not losing him for an IL stint, we feel very lucky.” … RHP Sixto Sánchez (shoulder) had a 20-pitch batting practice session Thursday and is scheduled to throw again Tuesday.
Nationals: OF Lane Thomas was scratched from the lineup with back tightness. … Washington placed LHP MacKenzie Gore on the bereavement list. … RHP Tanner Rainey recorded two outs Thursday in a rehabilitation assignment appearance for Rochester, the first time he has pitched on back-to-back days since undergoing Tommy John surgery last year. … RHP Thaddeus Ward (shoulder) threw a bullpen session Thursday. He is scheduled to pitch again Tuesday.
Marlins: RHP Eury Perez (5-4, 2.68 ERA) is 1-0 with an 0.82 ERA and 13 strikeouts in 11 innings in two starts against Washington as a rookie.
Nationals: RHP Jake Irvin (3-5, 4.30) has a 1.45 ERA over 18 2/3 innings in his last three starts, each of which resulted in a no-decision.
AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb