Down 9-0, Washington storms back for 14-12 victory
WASHINGTON — In the aftermath of their players-only meeting the previous day, the Nationals were hoping Thursday could represent something of a turning point to save this season from spiraling down even further. Perhaps, they could not have asked for a better way to do so than storming back from a nine-run deficit to pull off an improbable, and historic, 14-12 victory against the Marlins.
The largest comeback in Nationals history was made possible thanks to Trea Turner‘s career-high eight RBIs, matching the MLB record for most RBIs by a leadoff hitter. Turner hit his first career grand slam in the sixth inning to put the Nationals ahead for the first time in the game, sending the Nats’ dugout into a frenzy and inspiring a curtain call from the 24,314 fans at Nationals Park.
Turner stood on the dugout steps and pumped his fists during the curtain call for a moment the Nationals so desperately needed.
“I keep talking about the momentum,” Turner said. “I think that game was a huge momentum swing for us. If we can continue to ride that and play good baseball like we did — after maybe the first four innings or so — then I think we can beat anybody.”
Before beating the Marlins for the 12th consecutive time, the Nats had dropped a season-high five straight games, and their struggles in the past month left them a game under .500 at the start of the day and fading from contention. They held a players-only meeting Wednesday to reiterate that things needed to change. Then, the Marlins ambushed right-hander Jeremy Hellickson for nine runs (eight earned) in four innings.
Hellickson, who had been battling an illness all week, was not right from the start. After he gave up a run in the first inning, the Marlins punished him for six runs in the second inning, punctuated by a three-run homer from Martin Prado.
By Jamal Collier