Arraez snapped an 0-for-15 skid with a 5-for-5 night on Friday as Miami took the opener in Washington 6-5. He smacked a two-run homer, collected four singles, drove in three runs and scored twice. Arraez raised his average from .378 to .390.
"A lot of people I guess were worried about a three-game stretch, but you knew he was going to snap out of it," Miami manager Skip Schumaker said. "He's going to have (another) three-game stretch, too, so I don't want people to freak out when it happens again. He set the tone today, no doubt about it."
Garrett Cooper's pinch-hit infield single scored Yuli Gurriel from second with the winning run in the eighth inning for Miami, which sports a 39-31 record. That is the Marlins' best 70-game start since they were 42-28 in 1997, they year when they won their first World Series championship
Miami left-hander Braxton Garrett (2-2, 4.10 ERA) will oppose right-hander Jake Irvin (1-3, 5.81) in the middle game of the series on Saturday.
Garrett is 1-0 with a 2.25 ERA over his past six starts, with 41 strikeouts and seven walks in 32 innings. The Marlins have won five of those games
Last time out, Garrett pitched 5 1/3 scoreless innings against the Chicago White Sox in a no-decision on Sunday. He gave up three hits, walked one and struck out a season-high nine batters. He retired 12 of the first 14 batters he faced.
"He was so good keeping them off-balance," Schumaker said. "There wasn't loud contact at all, (it was) so tough to pull him (in the sixth inning)."
Garrett is 1-1 with a 3.38 ERA in three career starts vs. Washington.
Irvin will make his first start since June 6 as his spot in the rotation was skipped the last time through to give him a physical and mental break. The rookie has allowed eight runs (seven earned) over nine innings in his past two outings and has an 8.41 ERA over his past five starts, each of which ended with a Washington loss.
"I've taken this time to kind of reflect on what's happened so far and how you can move forward as best as possible," Irvin said. "Not only does it give the body a chance to reset, but it really gives your mind a chance to reset and move forward and grow."
After playing late into Thursday night in Houston and then flying back to Washington, the Nationals could have been forgiven for a lackluster effort on Friday. That wasn't the case. The Nationals did fall behind early, but they battled back against reigning National League Cy Young Award winner Sandy Alcantara to tie the game 5-5 in the fourth inning
"As far as the process goes, it's great for us to continue to push and continue to fight like that," said starting pitcher Trevor Williams, who wound up with a no-decision.
Lane Thomas homered and doubled for Washington, which has lost three of four and nine of 11. He smacked his seventh career leadoff home run and his second in 2023. Jeimer Candelario tied the franchise record with a three-double game.
--Field Level Media