WASHINGTON (AP) - Kurt Suzuki went 0-for-3 with a sacrifice bunt in his first game as member of the Nationals on Saturday, but Washington scored six runs in the eighth inning to rally for a 10-7 victory over the Miami Marlins.
A day after being traded from the Oakland A's, Suzuki started at catcher and batted eighth in the Nationals lineup. He provided a sac bunt in the sixth inning, but struck out in the middle of Washington's big eighth. The Baldwin High School graduate also allowed a pair of stolen bases by Jose Reyes.
Danny Espinosa hit a three-run homer and Bryce Harper hit a solo shot to cap Washington's eighth inning. Adam LaRoche homered twice earlier for the Nationals.
Bryce Harper of the Nationals receives congratulations from Michael Moore after hitting a solo home run as Kurt Suzuki looks on in the eighth inning of a 10-7 win over the Marlins on Saturday.
Combined with Houston's 3-2 win over Atlanta, the Nationals increased their lead over the Braves in the NL East to three games.
"It's a tight race," Harper said. "The Braves are playing well. We're playing well. When we win, they win. It's going to be tough to keep this going."
Washington trailed 6-4 heading into the eighth, but the Nationals tied it on run-scoring singles by Steve Lombardozzi and Tyler Moore against Mike Dunn (0-1). Dunn allowed six runs - all unearned - but his error caused the damage. He dropped Carlos Lee's toss on LaRoche's ground ball with one out.
Miami manager Ozzie Guillen delivered an expletive-laden tirade when asked about Dunn's error.
"There you go," he said. "There's the baseball game right there. He gives up a home run, that's fine. But we do the same (stuff) every day, day in and day out. That's the reason why we practice that.""
Espinosa, who had committed two errors leading to Miami runs, hit his 10th homer of the season over the bullpen in left field. Harper followed with his 10th to make it 10-6.
Ryan Mattheus (4-1) pitched 1 2/3 innings for the win.