Nationals-Marlins Preview

A revived offense has the Washington Nationals on the verge of
their longest winning streak of the season. Achieving that might
not be easy against Anibal Sanchez.

The Nationals look for a fourth straight victory and a rare
productive effort against Sanchez when they continue their road
series with the Florida Marlins on Tuesday night.

Adam Dunn and Ryan Zimmerman hit three-run homers and combined
for seven RBIs as Washington (57-75) snapped a five-game skid to
Florida with a 9-3 win Monday. The game was delayed almost three
hours by rain.

“When (Adam and I) get going and do what were supposed to do and
drive guys in, obviously it helps our offense,” Zimmerman

After totaling five runs during a four-game slide, the Nationals
have scored 40 while winning four of five. Washington will try a
sixth time to win four in a row.

Dunn is 6 for 10 with two home runs and nine RBIs in his last
three games after going 3 for 34 with 19 strikeouts in his previous
11. He is 5 for 13 with two homers in his last three games against
the Marlins (65-65) and a lifetime .294 hitter against Sanchez
(11-8, 3.29 ERA).

The right-hander has gone 4-0 with a 2.66 ERA in 11 starts
versus Washington, including 1-0 with a 1.64 ERA in two this

Sanchez has posted a 2.19 ERA while winning three of his last
four outings overall. He allowed four runs and walked five in five
innings but set a career high for wins with an 11-4 victory at New
York on Thursday.

“That’s baseball,” Sanchez told the Marlins’ official website.
“Sometimes you pitch good and you lose. Sometimes you don’t have
your best stuff and you just try to fight on the mound.”

Hanley Ramirez and Brett Hayes homered Monday for the Marlins,
losers of three in a row and five of eight since a five-game
winning streak.

Ramirez has gone 15 for 28 with three home runs and seven RBIs
in his last seven games. The star shortstop is batting .375 with
six homers and 10 RBIs in 13 games versus Washington in 2010.

Florida second baseman Dan Uggla is uncertain to play after
being scratched Monday with a strained groin. It was the first game
of the season Uggla missed after starting the first 129.

He is 5 for 12 with a homer and five RBIs against the Nationals
this season.

Washington’s Jordan Zimmermann (0-0, 11.25) makes his second
start since returning from Tommy John surgery. The right-hander
allowed five runs in four innings of an 11-10, 13-inning win over
St. Louis on Thursday, his first appearance since July 18,

“I felt good the whole time,” Zimmermann told the Nationals’
official website.

He gave up two runs and struck out six in six innings of a 5-3
loss in his only previous appearance versus Florida on July 1,
2009. Zimmermann didn’t get a decision.