Balester felt good but made one mistake that cost him against Marlins

Nationals right-handed relief pitcher Collin Balester said he was not bothered by the cold weather or being extended more than one inning during Saturday’s 13-inning loss to the Florida Marlins.

Donnie Murphy hit a two-run shot in the 13th to break a 1-1 tie and help the Marlins to a 4-1 victory.

Balester said pitching that long in relief wasn’t the concern and he felt he was doing pretty well.

“I have done it before, probably five or six times this year (having been extended for more than one inning),” Balester said. “Everything was good, I just left that pitch up to Murphy and he made me pay for it.”

Balester had pitched two clean innings for the Nationals in the 11th and the 12th frames. But in the 13th, the Marlins put together four hits and scored three runs.

He said the first two innings he was able to work the batters well to get outs.

“I was able to pitch fast balls down in the zone,” Balester said. “My curve ball was pretty good. I was able to put them away with it. But those pitches that I left up these guys are going to make you pay for it.”

Balester said it was a battle for both teams as the game extended deep into extra innings. There were no runs scored by either team from the sixth inning all the way through the 12th frame. But he said eventually something was going to break.

“Both bullpens are pitching good and the starters pitched well,” Balester said. “You kind of feed off each other. That is how it went tonight. After awhile something is going to happen. Too bad it happened to us.”

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