Nats' bats awaken after Fernandez's debut

Marlins ace fires two scoreless frames; Rendon, Robinson each tally two hits

Nats' bats awaken after Fernandez's debut

VIERA, Fla. -- Jose Fernandez tossed a pair of scoreless innings during his Grapefruit League debut in the Marlins' 7-4 loss to the Nationals on Monday at Space Coast Stadium. Anthony Rendon (2-for-2 with an RBI) and Clint Robinson (2-for-2 with three RBIs) led the way for Washington.

Fernandez threw mostly fastballs to a Nationals lineup that featured most of the club's projected Opening Day players. His velocity hovered in the mid-to-upper 90s as he struck out one and walk one.

The Marlins scored a pair in the third after a two-run single from outfielder Christian Yelich off Nationals starter Joe Ross, who allowed four hits in 2 2/3 innings and struck out four in his second outing -- and first start -- of the spring.

Nationals designated hitter Robinson smacked a two-run homer off Edwin Jackson as part of a three-run third inning. Jackson struggled in his first Grapefruit League appearance, getting tagged for eight hits and five runs in two innings.

Tanner Roark came on in relief for the Nationals and continued his sharp start to the spring. He held the Marlins scoreless in three innings, yielding four hits while striking out three. Roark and Ross are among the pitchers competing for spots in the Nationals' rotation.

Jonathan Papelbon, who had been away from the team for a family emergency, made his Grapefruit League debut and notched the save with a perfect ninth.

Up next for the Marlins: After two straight days on the road, the Marlins return to Roger Dean Stadium on Tuesday to face the Yankees at 1:05 p.m. ET on Gameday Audio. Tom Koehler makes his second Grapefruit League start. New York is going with lefty CC Sabathia. Miami slugger Giancarlo Stanton is dealing with a sore right knee, and likely won't be available. Second baseman Dee Gordon and shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria are lined up to start.

Up next for the Nationals: Max Scherzer will make his second Grapefruit League start when the Nationals face the Astros on Tuesday afternoon at Osceola County Stadium on MLB.TV and Gameday Audio. Scherzer threw a pair of scoreless innings during his first outing against the Mets. He is scheduled to go three innings or around 50 pitches.

Jamal Collier is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.