MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) — With a sweet flip of the bat, Adeiny Hechavarria confidently cleared the bases on a three-run triple that helped the Miami Marlins beat the Washington Nationals 6-2 on Sunday.
The win was the Marlins fifth straight victory after starting an abysmal 3-11.
The defending NL East champion Nationals (7-12) lost their fifth game in a row — their longest skid since July 2013 — and fell behind Miami into fourth place in the division.
Giancarlo Stanton hit an RBI triple off the top lip of the center field wall, reached on an infield single and scored twice. Miami hit three triples in a game for the first time since 2000.
Washington's Gio Gonzalez (1-2) allowed 10 hits and six runs in five innings, hiking his ERA to 5.01. The left-hander had won his past five starts against Miami, his hometown team.
Dee Gordon, who came into the game leading the NL with 28 hits, had four singles for Miami and raised his average to .390. Ichiro Suzuki had two hits, including an RBI single, and is batting .304.
Miami outhit Washington 14-4.
Dan Haren (2-1) needed 91 pitches to get through five innings but allowed only two runs, including the sixth homer he has given up in 24 innings this year.
Bryce Harper hit the homer — his fifth — and Denard Span had an RBI single.
The 6-foot-6 Stanton hustled to overcome a baserunning blunder with two outs in the fourth. He tried to score from second base on an infield single, and got hung up 30 feet from the plate.
Catcher Wilson Ramos chased him all the way back to third, pumping but never throwing, and Stanton made a headfirst dive and then safely crawled to the bag. That loaded the bases, and the Nationals — who rank last in the majors in fielding — paid for their mistake when Hechavarria tripled to put Miami ahead, 3-1.
Hechavarria started the season 1 for 22 but has since batted .460 since.
The sweep in the first meeting of the year between the division rivals was a big turnaround after Washington won 13 of 19 against Miami last year.
Nationals RHP Max Scherzer tested his sore right thumb by throwing off flat ground, and said he's uncertain whether he'll make his next start as scheduled Tuesday at Atlanta.
"I'm literally day to day," Scherzer said. "I'm not ready to rule it out completely. But I also have to be honest with myself, because any time you deal with any injury to your pitching hand, you really have to be 100 percent to go back out there."
Scherzer said his thumb is improving each day, and when he threw it felt better than he anticipated. He jammed it while batting Thursday.
Nationals: RHP Doug Fister (1-0, 2.37) starts Monday in the opener of a three-game series at Atlanta against Eric Stults (0-1, 4.50). Fister is 3-0 with a 1.23 ERA in three career starts against the Braves.
Braves: RHP Jarred Cosart (1-1, 3.63) starts Monday when they begin a three-game series against the Mets and Dillon Gee (0-1, 5.60). The Mets swept Miami in a four-game series a week ago.
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