WASHINGTON (AP) - The Washington Nationals had an eventful Friday. They acquired a new catcher, very possibly annoyed a catcher they already had, and wound up with a doubleheader split.
After winning the opener, the Nationals lost the second game when Josh Johnson outpitched Gio Gonzalez and gave the Miami Marlins a 5-2 victory
Adam LaRoche and Mark DeRosa each drove in three runs, leading John Lannan and the Nationals to a 7-4 win in the first game.
About two hours before the first pitch of the day, manager Davey Johnson announced that Washington had acquired catcher Kurt Suzuki from Oakland.
Nearly nine hours later when reporters approached catcher Jesus Flores at his locker, he said he didn't know about the transaction.
``I didn't know. Nobody has told me anything. Nobody has said anything to me about it. I'm surprised because you guys tell me right now,' Flores said.
``I don't want to talk about it. I'm in shock. I didn't know we had a new catcher,' Flores said.
Suzuki is supposed to arrive on Saturday. Flores, who took over from Wilson Ramos in May when he tore a knee, will lose playing time.
Johnson (7-7) improved to 9-1 lifetime against Washington. He fell one out short of his first complete game since April 26, 2010.
Johnson gave up one earned run and five hits. He struck out nine and walked none, and also got two hits.
Steve Cishek struck out the only batter he faced for his sixth save in nine chances.
The Nationals lead Atlanta by two games in the NL East. Miami is 14 1/2 games behind.
``Obviously these teams have talented guys on them,' Washington third baseman Ryan Zimmerman said.
``It doesn't matter if they're 20 or 30 games under .500, you have to beat that guy that day. No team is going to roll over and give anybody any easy wins.'
Carlos Lee drove in three runs and Jose Reyes had three hits to lead the Marlins.
Lee hit a two-run single with the bases loaded in the sixth against Gonzalez (13-6). Reyes opened the eighth with double and scored from second on Lee's grounder to short.
Emilio Bonifacio drove in the fifth run in the ninth with a single.
``It was a rough day,' Davey Johnson said.
In the ninth, Michael Morse singled just past second base with two outs. Bonifacio re-injured his left thumb trying to field the ball and the second baseman flipped it away, allowing Bryce Harper to score the second run.
Gonzalez zipped through the first five innings, facing just one batter over the minimum, allowing just two singles.
In the sixth, the Marlins scored three runs on five singles. Johnson singled with one out and with two down, Donovan Solano singled and Reyes had an infield single. Lee put the Marlins ahead with his hit and Greg Dobbs added an RBI single.
Gonzalez worked a season-high eight innings, allowing four runs and nine hits. He struck out 10 and did not walk a batter.
``I kept the team in the game as far as I can,' Gonzalez said.
In the first game, LaRoche hit an RBI single in the first and a home run in the third, then drew a bases-loaded walk in the fourth. He was hitless in the second game, ending his hitting streak at 11 games.
DeRosa, who missed nearly two months because of an oblique injury, doubled his RBI total for the season with a two-run single in the first and a bases-loaded walk in the fourth.
The Nationals scored seven runs off Brad Hand (0-1), who had been recalled from Triple-A New Orleans to start the game. Hand, 1-9 in his career, gave up six hits and six walks in 3 2-3 innings. He was returned to New Orleans after the doubleheader.
Lannan (2-0), who was recalled on July 21 for another doubleheader start, allowed three runs and four hits in six-plus innings. After walking five and striking out four, Lannan was optioned to Triple-A Syracuse after the second game.
Tyler Clippard came in with two runners on in the ninth to earn his 22nd save in 24 chances.
NOTES: Minor league C David Freitas was sent to Oakland for Suzuki. Current backup Sandy Leon, who caught the second game of the doubleheader, will probably be sent back to Double-A Harrisburg. To make room on the 40-man roster, Washington designated C Carlos Maldonado for assignment. ... Morse extended his hitting streak to 12 games. ... Nationals RHP Jordan Zimmermann (8-6, 2.28) will pitch against LHP Mark Buehrle (9-10, 3.60) on Saturday.
The Associated Press News Service
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