Marlins Vs. Nationals: Jason Marquis' Performance On Mound And At Plate Propel Washington To 8-4 Win

Jason Marquis led the Nationals to victory on the mound and at the plate, allowing Washington to finally earn a home victory over the Marlins, 8-4.

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Marlins Vs. Nationals: Jason Marquis, Pudge Rodriguez Lead Washington To Victory

In the immortal words of that creepy little lady in Poltergeist, Jason Marquis and the Nationals have "exorcised the demons", at least for one day. Washington's 8-4 victory over the Florida Marlins Sunday afternoon ended an eight game winning streak at Nats Park for the Fish.

A six running first inning outburst, combined with yet another stellar pitching performance from veteran Jason Marquis (5-1, 3.54), were the keys to victory. In his six and two-thirds innings of work Marquis allowed six hits, one walk and two earned runs, striking out two Marlins batters. It is win number five for the Washington right hander, tying him for the National League lead.

Future Hall of Famer Pudge Rodriguez led a 11-hit attack for the Nationals, going two for three at the plate with three runs batted in. Roger Bernadina was two for four and continues to excel in place of the injured Rick Ankiel.

Rookie Cole Kimball made his second big league appearance for Washington in the ninth, up four runs. The youngster was again impressive, showing good hustle to cover first base on a ball hit to Adam LaRoche and striking out Emilio Bonifacio to end the ballgame.

For the Marlins, stud outfielder Mike Stanton of the Marlins continued to crush the ball against the Nationals in D.C., going two for two with two doubles on the day, raising his average at Nats Park to a cool .500 (17 for 34).

With the victory, Washington inches closer to .500, now just two games below at 19-21. A quick two game home set against the Pittsburgh Pirates could be the magic elixir that gets Washington rolling and actually above that elusive .500 mark.

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Marlins Vs. Nationals: Washington Leads Florida 6-2 After Six Run First Inning

The Washington Nationals took the field today, determined not to be swept in this three game series with the Florida Marlins. The Nationals scored six runs in the bottom of the first inning off of Marlin's starter Javier Vazquez. Vazquez lasted just four innings, allowing those six runs on seven hits and two walks, striking out four Nats batters.

Nationals starter Jason Marquis has allowed just two unearned runs in five innings of work. The Washington righthander has allowed three hits and one walk, striking out two so far. Marquis even joined in the offensive fun in the bottom of the first, driving in two runs with a double (getting thrown out at third to end the inning, but let's not nitpick). He added a single in the fourth and it now just a homer and triple shy of the cycle (I kid, I kid).

Florida has won eight straight games against Washington at Nationals Park, and 21 of 28 games overall played at Washington's home ballpark since it opened. So far today it looks like Jim Riggleman's club would make Under Armour marketing executives happy, as the Nats seem bound and determined to protect their house.

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Marlins Vs. Nationals: Jason Marquis Looks To Terminate Florida's Lease At Nationals Park

The good news for the Washington Nationals entering today's game with the Florida Marlins? The Nats don't have to face Florida's Anibal Sanchez, who owned them Saturday afternoon as he has done his entire career. The bad news for the Nats? They still have to face Florida AT Nationals Park, where the Marlins have now won eight straight games against the hometown nine, and are in fact 21-7 at Nationals Park all time.

But fear not Nationals fans, Jason Marquis (4-1, 3.66 ERA) is taking the bump today, and he has given up two runs or less in six straight home starts, winning his two home starts in 2011 with a minuscule 1.13 ERA. He has been Washington's most consistent pitcher this year, winning four of his last five starts, holding the Braves to three runs on seven hits in 7+ innings in his last outing.

Javier Vazquez (2-3, 6.88) will take the mound for the Marlins. Vazquez has had a trying week, traveling to Puerto Rico midweek to be with his wife after one of her family members fell ill. Vazquez mental state could prove to be a factor in this game and is something to keep an eye on.

First pitch is 1:35 p.m. from Sun Life Stadium North, er, Nationals Park. If Washington wants to stay a factor in the ultra competitive NL East, they need to stop being home doormats for divisional rivals, beginning now.

Via Ben Goessling of MASNsports.com, Sunday's lineups:

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