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Nolasco K's four in 6 1/3 innings in last start

Florida starter Ricky Nolasco is feeling pretty confident these days, and it's hard to blame him.

After going 2-2 in St. Louis, the Marlins concluded their road trip with a 4-3 mark. Florida is 19-11 for the season and sits in second place behind the Phillies in the National League East.

The Marlins have won six of their last 10 games.

"It's fun. You've got a chance to win every day," Nolasco said. "We've showed that this team just battles and we're not just going to give up. It's a good feeling when you know that all 25 guys are out there laying it on the field. It's fun in this clubhouse. This is a good group of guys."

Next up for the Marlins are the Nationals, a team trying to climb back to .500. Washington will send Jordan Zimmermann to the mound.

Florida is coming off consecutive series against the Reds and the Cardinals, but don't expect a letdown from the Marlins. Every game against every team matters.

"I think we're doing a good job of not thinking about where you're playing, how we're playing," Nolasco said. "We don't really realize what we're doing right now. We're coming here, not thinking about too much. We're keeping it simple. We're playing to our abilities."

Nolasco is coming off an impressive win at Cincinnati, where he gave up three runs in seven innings. He is 8-3 with a 4.17 ERA lifetime against the Nationals, but has not faced them this season.

As for Zimmermann, he gave up two runs on six hits in six innings in a victory against the Giants in his last outing. He struck out four to snap a three-game losing streak.

The Marlins have had some success against Zimmermann. Emilio Bonifacio is 2-for-7, Mike Stanton is 2-for-4 with two home runs and Omar Infante is 1-for-3 with one home run.

Nationals: Pitchers picking up slack
Nats pitchers have allowed only 18 homers this season and issued only 91 walks in the first 31 games. Before John Lannan allowed six runs in two-plus innings Thursday's 7-3 loss to Philadelphia, Washington starters had pitched at least five innings in each of the first 30 games.

• Adam LaRoche is 11-for-35 (.314) against Nolasco. Jayson Werth is 3-for-13 with six strikeouts against the right-hander.

Marlins: Dobbs hopes to give it a go
Third baseman Greg Dobbs, who was removed in the seventh inning on Thursday at St. Louis, might be available Friday. Dobbs has a mild lower right leg strain.

• The Marlins are 16-0 when they hit a home run. "That's part of the game," manager Edwin Rodriguez said. "That always helps -- one swing and one run. That's part of the game. I think we've been hitting more home runs than earlier in the season."

Worth noting
The Marlins are pleased with their history against the Washington franchise. The club won two of three against the Nationals last month in Miami, and sport a 69-41 record overall against Washington. The record includes a 38-19 mark at home since the team moved from Montreal. The Marlins were 91-82 against the Expos. Comments