Washington vs. Florida - Recap - March 13, 2011
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Nolasco struggles as Marlins lose to Nats

JUPITER, Fla. (AP) -- This was one rough day for Ricky Nolasco and the Florida Marlins .

Nolasco looked shaky in his spring debut and the Marlins got more bad news after their 5-1 loss to the Washington Nationals on Sunday.

"Obviously, the rust showed," Nolasco said. "I'll just try to keep working and go get them next time."

Nolasco allowed four runs in 1 2-3 innings and hit two batters. Florida's projected No. 2 starter was slowed earlier this spring by a jammed right thumb that he hurt during exercises in Miami before he reported to camp.

Florida has lost six straight and announced after the game that right-hander Javier Vazquez will miss his scheduled start against the Twins on Monday because of mild elbow soreness. Center fielder Chris Coghlan also isn't expected to play until Wednesday because of a sore throwing shoulder.

Jordan Zimmermann continued his solid spring for the Nationals, allowing three hits in five scoreless innings. Zimmermann, Washington's projected No. 4 starter, has not allowed a run in 11 innings.

"I thought it went well. It was the best one I've had so far this spring," the right-hander said. "I had control of everything. I kept the ball down and the curveball was really sharp today."

Nolasco threw 23 of his 37 pitches for strikes in his first competitive start since Aug. 28. He missed the last month of the 2010 season because of a torn meniscus in his right knee.

"I was pretty nervous," he said. "I felt like it's been a really long time. It was good to get out there again and get that first one out of the way."

Nolasco signed a three-year, $26.5 million contract over the winter that will pay him $6 million this season. He went 14-9 with a 4.51 ERA last year, leading the team in wins.

It was the third straight rough outing for a Marlins starting pitcher. Josh Johnson allowed five runs in 3 2-3 innings Saturday and Chris Volstad allowed six runs, three earned, in three innings on Friday.

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