Marlins 3, Nationals 1
In the first meeting of the teams since the Sept. 1 fight, Alex Sanabia allowed three hits in 6 2-3 innings to lead the Marlins over the Nationals 3-1 Friday night.
Before the game, all was normal. Players visited with each other and Florida manager Edwin Rodriguez and Washington manager Jim Riggleman met at home plate.
In the bottom of the second inning, Nyjer Morgan, who received an eight-game suspension for charging Chris Volstad after the right-hander threw behind him, tried to steal second with two outs and pitcher John Lannan at bat.
Rookie catcher Brad Davis, who would homer in the seventh inning, threw out Morgan. It was the league-leading 17th time Morgan had been caught stealing.
When he was asked what was more satisfying - hitting a key home run or nabbing Morgan - Davis didn't have to think long.
''Throwing out Nyjer. It was the wrong time to steal, and I think he kind of did it in spite of us,'' Davis said. ''With all that happened, I think he kind of wants to put it to us a little bit, which is understandable. I would, too.''
That was the only hint of trash talk in the wake of the fight that caused Major League Baseball to discipline six players, both managers and a coach.
Riggleman defended Morgan, whose hearing was held earlier Friday. Besides the eight-game suspension, Morgan also had been suspended for seven games for throwing a ball into the stands at Philadelphia on Aug. 21.
''I can't ask him to hit eighth but not run,'' Riggleman said. ''That's Nyjer's game, I can't take that away from him.''
Sanabia (4-2), who will start a five-game suspension Saturday, allowed three hits in scoreless 6 2-3 innings.
''Whatever happened at home, happened. That was the end of that,'' Sanabia said. ''There was really no point of starting anything back up.''
Before the game, Marlins first baseman Gaby Sanchez dropped his appeal of a three-game suspension, as did Nationals reliever Doug Slaten.
As for the game, Dan Uggla had three hits as Florida stopped (71-69) stopped a three-game losing streak and avoided falling to .500. Washington has lost eight of its last nine to Florida and three in a row overall.
In his first start since turning 22 Wednesday, Sanabia struck out three, walked three, hit a batter and had a seventh-inning single, his first major league hit after an 0-for-15 start at the plate. Sanabia gave up a second-inning single to Morgan, a fifth-inning double to Michael Morse and a seventh-inning infield hit to Ivan Rodriguez.
Lannan (7-7) allowed three runs and seven hits in 6 2-3 innings, striking out six and walking three. The left-hander admitted that he had been under the weather, but didn't want to use it as an excuse.
Uggla hit an RBI single in the first, and Wes Helms followed with a sacrifice fly. Davis homered leading off the seventh.
NOTES: Volstad is scheduled to start Sunday against the Nationals, and then serve his six-game suspension beginning Monday. ... Marlins RHP Josh Johnson rejoined the club after his pitching shoulder and back were examined in Florida. Originally scheduled to pitch Friday, Johnson is to throw in the bullpen this weekend and said wants to pitch again this season. ''If it feels better in the next couple of days, why not?'' Johnson said. Rodriguez said he'll be cautious with Johnson. ''If there's any chance of him getting worse, we're going to shut him down for the rest of the season,'' Rodriguez said. ... Florida's Logan Morrison has reached base in 30 straight games. ... Hensley had been a teammate of Trevor Hoffman's in San Diego for four years, and he plans to send Hoffman a congratulatory message on his 600th save. ''I'm going to shoot him a text and tell him I have 599 to go.''