The Washington Nationals look to make it three straight to start the season as they play their second of a three game series with the Philadelphia Phillies. Tim Redding and Cole Hamels meet on the mound on a cold night in Philly's Citizens Bank Ballpark...
Nationals' shortstop Cristian Guzman singles to lead off the first. Hamels throws four straight balls to Lastings Milledge. Ryan Zimmerman pushes Pat Burrell to the warning track in right, and the cold Philly wind holds the ball in the park. Nick Johnson grounds to first, Ryan Howard makes the throw to second, but can't get back to the bag in time to receive the return. Austin Kearns takes a 3-1 pitch to walk and load the bases for Lo Duca. The Philly fans boo Lo Duca as he steps to the plate. Lo Duca rips a one-hop liner into Ryan Howard's glove for the final out of the Nationals' first.
"Don Sutton's Favorite Pitcher" Tim Redding pops up Jimmy Rollins for the first out of the Phillies' first. Shane Victorino pops out to short. Redding misses the plate with a high fastball to Chase Utley on a full-count offering, and now he'll have to face Howard with a man on. Ryan Howard goes for the short porch, but the same wind that held Zimmerman in guides Howard's hit into Willie Harris' mitt.
Ronnie Belliard swings through a high 2-2 fastball for the first out of the second. Willie Harris flies out to left, but Hamels can't get three straight as he gives up a single to the opposing pitcher Tim Redding who rips the first pitch up the middle of the infield. Cristian Guzman tops off the first offering and the catcher Carlos Ruiz throws him out at first for Hamels' second scoreless.
Tim Redding gets Pat Burrell to pop up the first pitch. Geoff Jenkins lifts one to short center where Lastings Milledge closes the glove on it. Pedro Feliz hits a two-out single up the middle, but Redding gets Carlos Ruiz to ground back to the mound for the final out of the second.
Felipe Lopez in left? That's what GM Jim Bowden just told the Nationals' TV announcers. Lastings Milledge lines out to right. Bowden just said John Lannan is a possibility for Sunday? Ryan Zimmerman lines one into Ryan Howard's glove. Hamels gets Nick Johnson to chase strike three into the dirt. 0-0 after two and a half. Tim Redding gets Hamels to ground out to second. Jimmy Rollins chops one off Redding's back but right to Ryan Zimmerman who throws Rollins out at first. Shane Victorino grounds out to give Redding three scoreless.
Hamels gets Austin Kearns for the first out, Paul Lo Duca pops out to third for the second, and Ronnie Belliard lines out to right for the third to end the top of the fourth. Tim Redding pops up Chase Utley, and Ryan Zimmerman makes the grab. Tim Redding slips a change under Ryan Howard's bat for a swinging strike three. Pat Burrell flies out to right, and there's no score after four.
Willie Harris grounds out to Chase Utley for the first out of the fifth. Tim Redding stares at strike three on a bender. Cristian Guzman disrupts Hamels' flow with a scorched ground ball through short for a two-out single, but Lastings Milledge swings over a two-strike curve to end the top of the fifth. In the Philly half of the fifth, Redding gets a weak grounder from Geoff Jenkins for the first out, Pedro Feliz grounds to short for number two, and catcher Carlos Ruiz grounds out to Guzman to get Redding through five. Still 0-0.
THE KIDS CALL HIM ZIM!! THE KIDS CALL HIM ZIM!!! Ryan ZImmerman goes all the way the other way and puts on into the corner in right on a wind-aided solo shot for a 1-0 Nationals' lead. Nick Johnson lines out to Chase Utley. Austin Kearns grounds to third where Pedro Feliz makes the play. Paul Lo Duca tests Pedro Feliz again, and the third baseman's up for it. 1-0 after five and a half. Tim Redding retires the Phillies in order to end the bottom of the sixth.
Ronnie Belliard pops out to start the seventh. Willie Harris stares at strike three. Tim Redding swings through two and takes the third strike to end the top of the seventh. Stand up and stretch...Austin Kearns cuts off a gap-shot from Chase Utley robbing the Philly second baseman of extra bases. Ryan Howard works a one-out walk. Pat Burrell rips one to Ryan Zimmerman, who traps it, throws to second, to first, double play to end the seventh. 1-0 Nationals.
Cole Hamels gets Cristian Guzman to ground back to the mound. Lastings Milledge lifts one to left that Pat Burrell easily handles. Ryan Zimmerman lines a single off the tip of Jimmy Rollins' glove as the shortstop nearly steals a hit. Nick Johnson reaches safely when Chase Utley can't backhand a hard-hit grounder. Austin Kearns pops out to short. 1-0 middle of eight. Redding's back for more...Geoff Jenkins walks to start the inning. Nationals' Manager Manny Acta is out with the hook...Luis Ayala on to face Pedro Feliz. Ayala saws off Feliz who grounds to third, Zimmerman cuts down the lead runner for the first out of the inning. Carlos Ruiz grounds to third, Zimmerman boots it, Guzman picks it up and gets the force at second. Greg Dobbs grounds to second, Belliard makes the play. 1-0 Nationals after eight.
Chad Durbin takes the mound in the top of the ninth for Philadelphia. Paul Lo Duca grounds out to third. Ronnie Belliard swings over a breaking ball. Willie Harris lines a two-out single to right. Who's that? That's DY coming up to bat. Philly brings on a lefty, J.C. Romero. DY grounds the first pitch back to Romero. There's a shadow cast over the mound...It's...It's....
The Tallest Pitcher....The Tallest Closer in MLB History Jon Rauch on to close out the game. Jimmy Rollins goes to a full count...and rips one to ri-...Nick Johnson backhands it and beats Rollins to first. 1. Shane Victorino flies out to left. 2. Chase Utley lines on one hop to Guzman who picks it and throws to first. 1,2,3 THE NATIONALS WIN!!! 1-0 win for three straight to start the season.
Nationals now 3-0.