The Washington Nationals beat the Miami Marlins, 7-5, behind outfielder Bryce Harper's three home runs on May 6.
The Washington Nationals beat the Miami Marlins, 7-5, on May 6.
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Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper was the catalyst with three home runs and five RBIs in the victory, per MLB.com's Bill Ladson and Ben Standig. Miami actually took an early 2-0 lead on Washington starter Max Scherzer, but Harper had the better of Miami starter Tom Koehler.
Harper hit all three of his homers off Koehler, per MLB.com.
His first home run in the bottom of the second inning covered a distance of 393 feet to left-center field, per a separate update by Ladson. An inning later and with the count 0-1, Harper recorded his second home run. This one traveled 442 feet all the way to the right-center-field deck of Nationals Park.
Ladson says Harper's third home run in the fifth innning was another one that traveled to the second deck. It was the farthest of the three at 445 feet. That gave Washington a 5-2 lead.
Harper's RBI groundout and Yunel Escobar's RBI single in the seventh inning padded the Nationals' lead to 7-2, per MLB.com.
The Marlins inched to within 7-5 after outfielder Giancarlo Stanton hit a three-run home run off Scherzer in the eighth inning, per MLB.com.
Scherzer allowed five runs on 10 hits for a total of 114 pitches in seven-plus innings of work, per another MLB.com update from Ladson. He entered the game against the Marlins with a National League-leading 1.26 ERA.
It was the first time he allowed more than three runs all season long, per Ladson.
Scherzer talked about his performance on the mound with MLB.com:
"I had great stuff today. [Catcher Wilson Ramos] and I were on a really good run right there. I thought we were really on the same page -- what to throw and what different situations.
"I really thought I made two mistakes. One to Ichiro in the second inning, when he was able to get a single. Obviously, the last one to Stanton -- [the count] was 3-2.
"I was trying to break that slider into the zone. Before I started, I just needed to finish it. I didn't finish it, and it hung right there, so he could hit it a country mile."
It was also just the second time the Nationals scored more than four runs with Scherzer as their starter this season, per MLB.com.
Harper discussed his three-homer game with Ladson:
"I was trying to get some good ABs. [Koehler] is a good pitcher. He has a curveball, slider and has a good changeup. We were trying to put some runs on the board for [Max Scherzer].
p>"That's how it should be. That's how I expect myself to play. If it's hitting homers, hitting doubles, that's what I need to do. That's what I expect out of myself. Of course, you are not going to have an actual day you are going to hit three home runs and drive in five, but that's the type of player I need to be."
Harper, who was 22 years and 202 days old at the time of the win, becomes the youngest player to hit three home runs in a game since Joe Lahoud did it on June 11, 1969, per Ladson. Harper was a mere 149 days older than Lahoud when taking the latter's age when he hit three homers in a game into consideration.
Harper also becomes the fourth Nationals player to hit three home runs in a game following Alfonso Soriano (April 21, 2006 against the Atlanta Braves), Adam Dunn (July 8, 2010 against the San Diego Padres) and Ryan Zimmerman (May 29, 2013 against the Baltimore Orioles), per Ladson.
Washington upped its record to 14-15 (.483) for third in the National League East while Miami slipped to 13-15 (.464) for fourth place in the division through May 6, per MLB.com.
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