for this game

Bergmann shuts down Marlins in Nationals' win

Sep 3, 2007 - 10:04 PM By Tim Hipps PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

WASHINGTON (Ticker) - Making his second start since coming off the disabled list, Jason Bergmann pitched seven strong innings as the Washington Nationals posted a 6-3 victory over the Florida Marlins in the opener of a three-game series on Monday.

Bergmann, who spent five weeks on the DL with tightness in his left hamstring, allowed one run and four hits and walked just one. He finished one shy of his career high with nine strikeouts while ending the Marlins' two-game winning streak.

"It just seemed that as the game went on, I got stronger and more confident in my pitches," said Bergmann, who added that his slider was the difference-maker. "It was actually sliding. It had a little extra something and it was actually doing exactly what it's supposed to. It was a real key to the victory."

Bergmann (3-5) has allowed two runs or less in nine of his past 15 starts. He ranks second on the ballclub despite missing 66 games because of injuries. The victory was his first since July 18 against the Houston Astros.

"I pitched really well in Triple-A in the rehab starts, and I feel right now close to where I was there in the last game out," said Bergmann, who pitched well but did not get a decision in the Nationals' 4-3 loss to the Dodgers last Tuesday. "This is a good step in the right direction."

The Nationals scored four runs in the sixth, capped by Wily Mo Pena's fifth homer of the season, a two-run blast to left-center that chased Marlins starter Rick VandenHurk (4-5), who allowed six runs and eight hits in 5 1/3 innings. He struck out six and walked one.

"I just left a couple of pitches up and they hit it hard," VandenHurk said. "They did a good job with a couple of my mistakes."

Felipe Lopez started the Nationals' rally in the sixth with a head-first sliding triple off the glove of Marlins' center fielder Cody Ross, who made a long gallop for an over-the-shoulder attempt. Ryan Zimmerman followed with an RBI double to the warning track in center that gave the Nationals a 3-1 lead.

One out later, Austin Kearns' RBI single to left-center scored Zimmerman for a 4-1 lead. Kearns, who is hitting .397 during his past 18 games, went 3-for-4 and scored twice.

Harvey Garcia, making his major-league debut, relieved VandenHurk with one out in the sixth and escaped without allowing another run.

Marlins outfielder Jeremy Hermida had a rough second inning in right field. He kept a potential home run off the bat of Dmitri Young in the park, but failed to keep the ball in his glove and was charged with a two-base error. The official scorer changed his ruling on the play several innings later, giving Young a double and taking the error from Hermida.

One batter later, however, Hermida came up empty on a diving stab of a single by Kearns. He was then charged with an error for a weak throw to second from his knees that allowed Kearns to take an extra base.

Marlins third baseman Miguel Cabrera got Young on a force play at home on Pena's fielder's choice for the first out of the inning. After Ronnie Belliard struck out, Brian Schneider delivered a two-run double off the right-center field wall that scored Kearns and Pena, giving the Nationals a 2-1 lead.

Mike Jacobs gave the Marlins a 1-0 lead in the second with his 13th home run, a shot to right-center off Bergmann.

Florida was held scoreless until the eighth inning, when Cabrera grounded into a fielder's choice off reliever Jesus Colome with the bases loaded, scoring Todd Linden. On the play Washington second baseman Belliard made a throwing error, allowing Dan Uggla to score the third Marlins' run.

"We had the bases loaded in the eighth inning with a big chance to get back in it," Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "We didn't roll over. We had a good chance with (Mike) Jacobs at the plate and Cody Ross may be the hottest hitter in the world. We had a chance to get there and just didn't get it done."

Jon Rauch struck out Jacobs and Ross with the bases loaded to end the threat.

"Rauch is a good pitcher," Ross said of the 6-11 righthander. "I've struggled against him in the past. He's got such a downward angle that it's tough to pick up his ball. He made some good pitches when he needed to."

Closer Chad Cordero pitched the ninth for his 30th save.

Cordero, who surpassed his 29 saves of last season, has posted 30 or more saves twice in four seasons. He had a career-high 45 saves in 2005.

The Marlins survived a scary moment in the first inning when leadoff batter Hanley Ramirez apparently popped his left shoulder out of socket while swinging at a pitch. After talking with Gonzalez, Ramirez stepped back in the batter's box and drilled a double to left-center field.

"He hit two balls straight away over the center fielder," Gonzalez said. "He's fine, I guess. I think it scares him more sometimes than it really hurts him. If he was hurt, he couldn't put two swings on the ball like that.

"I went in there thinking I was going to have to take him out of the game, like we did that one time, but he said 'No. No. It didn't pop out.' Then he took a couple of swings and said it felt good."

With the victory, the Nationals won their third straight and passed the Marlins for sole possession of fourth place in the NL East.

"I think it means a lot to the mindset of this team, from the ownership on down," Bergmann said. "No one wants to finish in last, especially where people wrote us off at the beginning of the year. It would just mean a lot to all of us."








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    FLORIDA 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 3 7 1
    WASHINGTON 0 2 0 0 0 4 0 0 x 6 11 1 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: FLA - RICK VANDENHURK, HARVEY GARCIA (6TH), CHRIS SEDDON (8TH) AND
    MIGUEL OLIVO
    WAS - JASON BERGMANN, JESUS COLOME (8TH), JON RAUCH
    (8TH), CHAD CORDERO (9TH) AND B

    Sep 3 4:05 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    FIELDER'S CHOICE BY MIGUEL CABRERA SCORED TODD LINDEN AND
    DAN UGGLA.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, M CABRERA ON FIRST, J HERMIDA ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: FLORIDA 3
    WASHINGTON 6 TOP, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: J WILLINGHAM (.271, 0-FOR-3)

    Marlins vs. NationalsSep 3 3:30 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY WILY MO PENA (5) TO LEFT CENTER WITH 1
    OUT IN THE 6TH OFF RICK VANDENHURK SCORED AUSTIN KEARNS.
    CURRENT SCORE: FLORIDA 1, WASHINGTON 6
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: R BELLIARD (.280, 0-FOR-2)

    Marlins vs. NationalsSep 3 2:51 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY AUSTIN KEARNS SCORED RYAN ZIMMERMAN.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, A KEARNS ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: FLORIDA 1
    WASHINGTON 4 BOTTOM, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: W PENA (.213, 0-FOR-2)

    Marlins vs. NationalsSep 3 2:46 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY RYAN ZIMMERMAN SCORED FELIPE LOPEZ.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, R ZIMMERMAN ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: FLORIDA 1
    WASHINGTON 3 BOTTOM, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: D YOUNG (.332, 0-FOR-2)

    Marlins vs. NationalsSep 3 2:43 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY BRIAN SCHNEIDER SCORED AUSTIN KEARNS AND WILY MO
    PENA.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, B SCHNEIDER ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: FLORIDA 1
    WASHINGTON 2 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: J BERGMANN (.111, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Marlins vs. NationalsSep 3 1:44 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY MIKE JACOBS (13) TO RIGHT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 2ND OFF JASON BERGMANN.
    CURRENT SCORE: FLORIDA 1, WASHINGTON 0
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: C ROSS (.330, 10 HR, 31 RBI)

    Marlins vs. NationalsSep 3 1:28 PM