Friday’s 37-minute first inning featured eight runs, six hits, five walks and 68 pitches. One starter recovered. The other had the most underwhelming performance of his heralded young career. The Marlins thrashed Stephen Strasburg for seven runs on five hits over two innings on their way to an 8-3 win at Marlins Park. As bad as Nathan Eovaldi looked in spotting the Nationals a 3-0 lead, Strasburg was worse in giving it right back. Strasburg threw more balls (20) than strikes (16) in walking three of the first four batters he faced before giving up three straight hits. The Marlins sent 10 men to the plate. Highlighting the five-run inning was Marcell Ozuna’s game-tying, bases-clearing triple. “I said, ‘OK, let me keep it to the middle no matter what,’” said Ozuna, who faced Strasburg during a rehab assignment two seasons ago in low-A and struck out. “You got no chances to hit when he made the rehab. When I was in low-A I was thinking, ‘OK, no matter what I will face him again. I will see you later.’ We faced him right now and I got my hit.” In the second, Strasburg needed 30 pitches to record three outs. One of those offerings resulted in a Giancarlo Stanton two-run homer. Eovaldi in spite of a 33-pitch first that saw him walk a pair recouped and delivered his fifth quality start in as many outings since coming off the disabled list. The Nationals went scoreless on one infield hit over Eovaldi’s last five innings. Before exiting at the 100-pitch mark, Eovaldi retired 17 of the final 20 batters he faced. “That first inning, I let that first at-bat get to me walking him,” Eovaldi said. “I just didn’t regroup after that…I let the first inning get the best of me put the guys picked me right back up. It was huge for them to put together the at-bats they did off Strasburg.” The Marlins had not scored seven or more in two innings or fewer against an opposing starter since Sept. 1, 2010. That’s when ex-Marlin Scott Olsen pitching for the Nationals allowed eight over 1 2/3 innings. Statistically, Strasburg easily had the ugliest of his 63 career starts. He recorded an all-time low six outs for just the second time. On May 31 against the Braves, Strasburg exited after two innings as well but due to a back issue. The only other time Strasburg has allowed seven runs in a game was last Aug. 28, also against the Marlins. The difference then was two were unearned.
Marlins sting erratic Strasburg to top Nationals 8-3
Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel | Jul 13