Washington Nationals Top 10 Games Of 2015: #4 – Bryce Harper Hits Three Home Runs Against Marlins
By Ricky Keeler
Our top 10 games countdown of this season continues with arguably the best game of the season from the NL MVP, Bryce Harper.
We have reached the number four spot on our top ten games countdown. Today, we take a look back at May 6 when the Washington Nationals played their series finale against the Miami Marlins at Nats Park. This game would be the beginning of a power surge for the eventual NL MVP, Bryce Harper, as he hit three home runs in the Nats’ 7-5 win over the Marlins.
Although the Nats did get the win, it would be the Marlins who would get on the board first against Max Scherzer. In the top of the second, Miami had four straight hits to begin the inning. After a leadoff single by Justin Bour and a double by J.T. Realmuto, Ichiro Suzuki and Adeiny Hechavarria drove both runners in with back-to-back single to give Miami a 2-0 lead.
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In the bottom of the inning, Harper would hit the first of his three home runs against Marlins’ starter Tom Koehler. He led off the inning by hitting a 1-0 fastball from Koehler into the bullpen in left center for a solo shot.
The top of the Nats’ lineup would provide the offense during the following inning with four consecutive hits. Denard Span and Ian Desmond hit back-to-back doubles to begin the frame. After Yunel Escobar’s sacrifice fly tied the game at two, it was Harper who crushed a 0-1 fastball into the upper deck in right center for a two-run home run. His second of the game put the Nats up 4-2.
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One inning later, Harper added his third home run in at many at-bats when he took a 0-1 fastball from Koehler into the upper deck in right center. It was Harper’s eighth home run of the season that put the Nationals ahead, 5-2. On the afternoon, Harper went 3-for-4 with three home runs, three runs scored, and five RBI’s.
Washington would add some much needed insurance runs in the bottom of the seventh against reliever Sam Dyson. The Nationals had three straight singles from Span, Desmond, and Escobar to increase the lead to 6-2. Then, Harper, while not hitting a fourth home run, drove in a run with a groundout to second.
As for Scherzer, he settled in after the second inning, but ran into some trouble in the eighth. Dee Gordon and Martin Prado led off the inning with back-to-back singles. Then, on the ninth pitch to Giancarlo Stanton, Stanton crushed a three-run home run to left field to cut the lead to 7-5. That would be Scherzer’s final pitch as he went seven innings, gave up five runs on ten hits, struck out ten, and walked no one on 114 pitches (82 strikes).
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While Tanner Roark would give up back-to-back one out singles in relief of Scherzer, he struck out Ichiro swinging and got Hechavarria to ground out to third to end the inning. Drew Storen would allow the first two runners to reach base in the ninth, but he got Prado to fly out to right and struck out Stanton and Marcell Ozuna swinging to end the game and secure the win for the Nats.