The Miami Marlins took a lead in the first inning of tonight's game versus the Washington Nationals, and with the red-hot Jarred Cosart on the mound, you would think that might have been enough to get a Fish victory. Miami took that first inning lead thanks to some two-out hitting. Casey McGehee and Donovan Solano were on board with two outs, and Justin Bour delivered on a single that drove in the first run of the game.
In the fourth inning, a spectacularly misplayed ball led to a classic Little League home run for Reed Johnson. Johnson doubled to deep center field off the wall. Denard Span fielded it and threw it back towards the cutoff man, but the ball got by Ian Desmond and the second backup in the infield, allowing Johnson to advanced to third base. Then Jordan Zimmermann got a hold of it and tried to throw Johnson out at third, only to have the ball get by and skip up the left field line. Johnson easily scored and it was a 2-0 contest.
Things appeared to be going well for Cosart on the mound as well. He was allowing too many baserunners, but he had the benefit of a whopping three double plays to help him out in the early going. In addition, the Fish made some spectacular defensive plays behind Cosart, including a stunning grab by Donvan Solano on a grounder in the outfield grass and a great throw by Jeff Mathis to try and catch a stealing Jayson Werth who had gotten a great jump going to third.
But Cosart's baserunner ways eventually caught up to him in the seventh inning. He recorded only two strikeouts and could not miss bats all night, and it led to a situation where the team could not bail him out defensively. Desmond led the inning off with a single and was followed by Ryan Zimmerman's triple. The Fish nailed Zimmerman at home on a grounder on the next play, but Asdrubal Cabrera tripled home a runner as well. With Mike Dunn brought it to face the lefties Bryce Harper and Denard Span, the fire was almost put out. Harper grounded out to Dunn, but Span lined a base hit to right to give the Nationals the lead.
That was enough to win it, but not without some late-game almost heroics. Miami had their chance in the ninth versus Drew Storen, as Marcell Ozuna and Bour singled to put runners on first and third with one out. But then pinch-hitter Garrett Jones came in and grounded into a double play to end the game.
Hero of the Game: Justin Bour (+0.355 WPA)
Goat of the Game: Garrett Jones (-0.435 WPA)
Play of the Game: Garrett Jones grounded into a double play in the ninth. Ed Lucas out at second base.