Reynolds, Nationals aim to power way past Marlins

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Reynolds, Nationals aim to power way past Marlins Reynolds Nationals aim to power way past Marlins

WASHINGTON — Red-hot Mark Reynolds and the Washington Nationals will go for the sweep in the finale of their four-game series against the Miami Marlins on Sunday.

Reynolds followed up his dramatic walk-off homer Friday night with two homers and a career-high 10 RBIs Saturday night as the Nationals demolished the Marlins 18-4.

In five at-bats, Reynolds homered, doubled, singled, homered and singled to tie his career high for hits along with the Nationals’ RBI mark.

“Yeah that’s like a good two weeks,” Reynolds said. “I mean like my last hit a guy dove and it went off his glove and went into left field. You got a little luck involved. Sometimes you just take a good swing the night before and feel confident going into the next day and that’s what happened.”

Since their team meeting following a July 4 loss to the Red Sox the Nationals (45-43) have won three straight, scoring 35 runs.

Manager Dave Martinez should rest easy, but now has a pleasant problem: where to put the righty Reynolds on Sunday when the Marlins pitch a right-hander and his other two first base options are lefty hitters.

“I’ve seen him like this, when he gets hot like this he can stay hot for a while, so we’ll have to figure something out,” Martinez said.

The Marlins got homers from Starlin Castro, J.T. Realmuto and Yadiel Rivera against Max Scherzer in a game that was tied 3-3 going to the bottom of the fifth before Washington pulled away for its 14th straight win over Miami.

“We haven’t had any success with them in a while now,” manager Don Mattingly said. “They’re a good lineup up and down, but we’ve pitched better than this.”

Scherzer (11-5) picked up his first win since June 5. Washington had been shut out in three of his past five starts.

“I remember I said after Tampa the run support is going to be there,” he said. “These guys are too good.”

Miami rookie Trevor Richards (2-5, 5.26 ERA) opposes right-hander Tanner Roark (3-10, 4.60) in the finale.

Roark is looking for his first win since June 6. Last time out he allowed nine runs on 10 hits — including two home runs — over seven innings of a loss to the Red Sox as he stayed in after a six-run fifth to save the arms in a tired bullpen.

“That’s the best I’ve felt in a long time,” Roark told MLB.com. “So other than two pitches, I feel like they base-hit me to death. What are you going to do?”

Roark is 5-8 with a 3.99 ERA in 22 games against the Marlins. Martin Prado is 10-for-23 against Roark and J.T. Realmuto is 10-for-26. Justin Bour is 5-for-29 but three of the hits were home runs.

Richards, who will make his first start against Washington, allowed four runs on nine hits with no walks across five innings in a no-decision Tuesday against the Rays. He struck out five. He is 2-3 with a 5.52 ERA since being recalled from Triple-A New Orleans on June 7.

“We’ve had a rough series so far,” Mattingly said. “Hopefully Trevor gets us on track tomorrow and we can put a win together and move on.”





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