- Associated Press - Saturday, April 12, 2014

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Marlon Byrd and the Phillies knew facing Jose Fernandez would be a challenge. They were up for it.

Byrd drove in two runs and Philadelphia knocked around Fernandez in one of his worst major league starts, beating the Miami Marlins 6-3 Friday night to snap a four-game skid.

“Offense was very good; they stepped up to the challenge,” Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said. “We wanted to be aggressive early on in the game with strikes in the zone. You don’t want to get in the hole too often with him. Guys swung the bats early and that set the tone.”

Phillies starter A.J. Burnett left in the fourth inning because of a sore right groin, but Philadelphia chased Fernandez (2-1) with three runs in the fifth en route to its first home win of the season.

“He has that aggressive attitude and a lot of confidence on the mound, but you have to come out swinging,” Byrd said. “We got him today. It was huge. We had a good approach, took good swings, put the bats on the ball and got those timely hits.”

Fernandez, last season’s NL Rookie of the Year, was tagged for eight hits and a career-worst six earned runs in four-plus innings. The right-hander walked four, matching a career high, and struck out six. He gave up only one run over 18 innings in three appearances against Philadelphia last season.

“I was trying to throw strikes and it didn’t happen,” Fernandez said. “It’s all part of the game. I had two good starts and then come here and get my (butt) kicked. I’m looking forward to my next bullpen, then go from there.”

Derek Dietrich homered for the Marlins, who lost their fifth straight. Miami has been outscored 32-13 during the slide.

“We had opportunities,” manager Mike Redmond said. “We had guys on base but couldn’t get anything going.”

Burnett was removed with one out in the fourth after walking Casey McGehee to load the bases on four pitches that weren’t even close. Phillies trainer Scott Sheridan went to the mound with Sandberg to pull Burnett from the game. He had thrown 106 pitches.

The right-hander will be re-evaluated Saturday.

“I felt like everything was tight. I’m not too concerned, but you never know,” the 37-year-old Burnett said. “I’m not a spring chicken anymore.”

Left-hander Jake Diekman (1-0) relieved Burnett and wiggled out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam by striking out Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Dietrich.

Byrd had two hits, including a double. Chase Utley and Jimmy Rollins also had two hits for the Phillies, outscored 25-10 by Milwaukee this week in their first home series of the season. The Brewers won all three games for their first sweep in Philadelphia.

Jonathan Papelbon pitched a scoreless ninth for his second save in three chances.

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