WSH@MIA: Fernandez hurls seven frames of one-hit ball

MIAMI -- If Jose Fernandez had put himself in position to make history on Friday night, Marlins manager Mike Redmond would not have stood in the rookie's way.

On Saturday afternoon, Redmond answered the unanswered question from the night before -- What if the no-hitter stayed intact?

The situation became moot, because Fernandez's bid was foiled with one out in the sixth inning on Zach Walters' pinch-hit infield single.

Brilliant in seven shutout innings, Fernandez flirted with no-hit history in Miami's 7-0 win over the Nationals at Marlins Park.

Walters' dribbler down the third-base line was the lone hit the 21-year-old rookie allowed.

After nine strikeouts and 94 pitches, Fernandez exited.

"I was fully ready to let him pitch that whole game, if he had the chance to go for it," Redmond said. "And that would have been it."

Now with 165 2/3 innings pitched, Fernandez has one more scheduled start before he is shut down after facing the Braves on Sept. 11 in Miami.

Had Fernandez gone nine innings in quest for a no-hitter, the Marlins would have called it a season for the rookie.

It never reached that point, but during the game, Redmond and pitching coach Chuck Hernandez were already thinking about how to deal with a potential no-hitter.

"Believe me, I was sitting there thinking it," Redmond said. "Chuck and I, we weren't even looking at each other. We knew."

The Marlins have four no-hitters in their history, with the last being turned in by Anibal Sanchez against the D-backs. Ironically, Fernandez was pursuing the no-hitter on the seventh anniversary of Sanchez's no-hitter.

Before the season, the Marlins placed Fernandez's innings limit at around 170.

Redmond said that for Fernandez's next start against the Braves, the plan will be the same as Friday. The rookie will be allowed to go as deep into the game as possible, depending on how he is doing. So while, Fernandez is 4 1/3 innings shy of 170, his performance will determine how far he goes in his final start.

"Jose is going to get a chance to pitch, and we're going to let him go out and try to win the ballgame," Redmond said. "I talked to him about it. Just like we did [Friday], we're going to let him go and try to win the ballgame.

"Chuck and I have been very consistent on how we approached him and how we've used him this year. We've tried to really take care of him and watch his innings, and watch his pitches. We'll do that again this next start. I think it's good that he doesn't have to go out there and think he's got only four innings, five innings or whatever it is."

Stanton leaves with sore foot, X-rays negative

MIA@ATL: Stanton hurts ankle, leaves later in game

MIAMI -- Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton was replaced in the eighth inning on Saturday due to a sore right foot and ankle.

The 23-year-old experienced discomfort for most of the day, and in the second inning in Miami's 9-2 loss to the Nationals, he started dealing with more pain.

With Miami trailing by five runs after seven innings, Stanton was replaced in the eighth inning. He had an X-ray taken on his foot and ankle, and it came back negative.

Stanton's status is day-to-day, but it is likely he will be given Sunday's series finale with the Nationals off.

Stanton initially rolled his right ankle while stepping on first base last Sunday at Atlanta in Miami's 7-0 win over the Braves at Turner Field. He has played through some discomfort this past week.

"It was just one of those days," Stanton said. "Today, it hurt, I don't know why, more than almost the first day that it happened."

There was not a specific play or moment that led to more intensified discomfort.

"A bunch of factors could have gone into it," he said. "I'm just calling it a bad day, right now."

Stanton is dealing with discomfort to both sides of his ankle, as well as his heel.

Justin Ruggiano moved from center field to right field to replace Stanton in the eighth inning, and rookie Jake Marisnick played center.

Stanton was hitless in three at-bats on Saturday, and he is batting .249 on the season with 19 homers and 46 RBIs.

LoMo's homer longest so far at Marlins' Park

Must C Crushed: Morrison drills one into second deck

MIAMI -- For at least one swing, Logan Morrison has bragging rights over Giancarlo Stanton.

Stanton may be one of the most powerful sluggers in the game, but the distinction of the longest home run measured at Marlins Park goes to Morrison.

In the third inning of Miami's 7-0 win over the Nationals on Friday night, Morrison blasted a two-run homer off Dan Haren into the second deck in right-center. The estimated distance, announced by the Marlins, was 484 feet, making it the longest homer ever at the two-year old ballpark.

At cavernous Marlins Park, center field is measured at 418 feet, with a 13 1/2-foot-high wall. And the gap in left-center is 386 feet, compared to 392 feet for the gap in right.

Compounding problems for hitters is that the ball doesn't travel as well as in other parks.

Many Marlins and visiting players routinely grumble about not being rewarded by the building.

Morrison now has six home runs on the season, with just one in Miami. The no-doubt blast gives him something over Stanton, who has the kind of power that makes any ballpark appear small.

"I hit one further than him in here, so, I'm taking it and running with it," Morrison said.

Stanton was happy the measurement was rewarding, because there are several misleading measurement signs located around the park, some on the concourse. There is a sign of 465 over the second deck in right-center that Stanton repeatedly jokes about, because it is not even close to being accurate.

"I was telling [Morrison], 'They were probably going to give him like 420, and just call it a day.' That's what they always do," Stanton said. "I was like, 'Thank goodness, they gave you a good number.'"

Still, is the 484 number accurate?

The Marlins' public relations staff uses a grid of estimations of the ballpark. And frequently the measurements don't match the ESPN Home Run Tracker website, which listed Morrison's homer at 467 feet.

Even if 467 feet is accurate, it makes it the longest shot at Marlins Park. In 2012, Stanton belted a grand slam off Jamie Moyer that knocked out some light panels the auxiliary scoreboard.

Stanton's slam was estimated at 462 feet.

Prior to Morrison's shot, the longest two homers this year at Marlins Park were turned in by Juan Francisco and Hunter Pence. Each were credited with 459-foot shots.

Francisco, while with Atlanta, went deep off Alex Sanabia on April 10. Pence blistered his shot off Tom Koehler on Aug. 18.

Whatever the exact distance, Morrison just knows he hit the ball well.

"It felt like I hit a rubber ball," he said.

Pierre moves up all-time hits list

Marlins Baseball: Juan Pierre - Dive In

MIAMI -- There is no confusing the power comparisons, but Juan Pierre now shares another impressive milestone with Hall of Famer Willie McCovey.

In the Marlins' 7-0 win over the Nationals on Friday night, Pierre delivered a pinch-hit single, giving him 2,211 career hits, which ties McCovey for 177th all-time.

Pierre passed Willie Randolph.

Pierre is one hit behind Joe Kuhel (1930-47) for 176th, and he is three shy of matching the great Joe DiMaggio, who is at 175 with 2,214 hits.

"You look at the names," manager Mike Redmond said. "You look at that stuff, for all of us who have been in this game for so long, it's remarkable. You look at him, and he's been so humble. What he's been able to do on the field is truly amazing."

Three hits may not seem like much, but Pierre hasn't made a start since July 14. The 36-year-old veteran has accepted a bench role as rookies like Christian Yelich are getting steady playing time.

Redmond said he plans on giving Pierre opportunities in the final few weeks to move up the ladder.

"I'm going to do everything I can to help him along the way, getting those pinch-hits," Redmond said. "Not to say he won't get another start or two before the end of the season. What he's been able to do over the course of his career is unbelievable.

"In all honesty, he's really taken his game, leadership-wise, to the next level. He's been great. He's been super positive. I think he's been such a great asset, not only to me in the clubhouse, but to these young players."