XM 185 for the afternoon tilt. Jason Bergmann vs Jamie Moyer in the third of three between the visiting Washington Nationals and the Philadelphia Phillies, who look to avoid losing three straight to start '08, as they begin their defense of the NL East crown. Austin Kearns is batting clean-up, Aaron Boone gets his first start as a National at first base, (DY?)...Felipe Lopez, yes that Felipe Lopez gets the start in left, and everyone's favorite backstop Jesus Flores is behind the plate for the first time this season.
Cristian Guzman doubles off Jamie Moyer to start the game. Lastings Milledge reaches safely on what sounds like a poor play by Ryan Howard at first. Ryan Zimmerman reaches on an error by Utley(Chase), Philly gets the force on Milledge at second, but Utley's errant throw allows Guzman to score from third, 1-0 Nationals. Austin Kearns walks. Two on, one out. Aaron "F'N" Boone singles in Zimmerman. 2-0 Nationals. Ronnie Belliard doubles off Moyer. Two runs score. 4-0 Nationals in the first. What would Jesus do? Jesus Flores doubles, Belliard scores, 5-0 Nationals after a half.
Jason Bergmann retires the Phillies in order in the first.
Cristian Guzman doubles off Jamie Moyer to start the second. Lastings Milledge reaches on an infield grounder. Ryan Zimmerman reaches on a misplay on the mound by Moyer. Bases loaded for Austin Kearns. Kearns lines it back at Moyer, who snags it, throws home and Philly catcher Chris Coste throws to first, double play. Aaron Boone K's. 5-0 DC after one and a half.
Jason Bergmann gives up a two-out single to Geoff Jenkins. Pedro Feliz flies to left...Felipe Lopez has it. 5-0 Nationals after two. Jesus Flores hits a two-out double in the third, but Jamie Moyer gets Bergmann to end the top of the frame. Chris Coste, the Phillies' backup catcher starts the third with a HOME RUN! 5-1 Nationals after three.
Cristian Guzman doubl...reaches on an error at the hot corner by Pedro Feliz of the Phillies to start the fourth. Lastings Milledge singles to left. Ryan Zimmerman flies out to center. Austin Kearns up, and Jamie Moyer catches Guzman leaving too soon and takes back the runner, Milledge advances to second on the play. Austin Kearns singles, Milledge scores. 6-1 DC. "Old Man Moyer" is packing up his "Bag of Slow Tricks" for today...(3.2 IP, 9 hits, 6 runs, 3 earned, 1 walk, 3 K's, and 7.36 ERA). Chad Durbin comes on to close the top of the frame. Jason Bergmann strikes out the side to hold the Nationals 6-1 lead through four.
No score in the fifth. Rudy Seanez comes on for Philly in the sixth and puts the Nationals down in order. Chase Utley singles with one out in the Phillies' sixth. Ryan Howard singles. Pat Burrell singles by Ryan Zimmerman at third. Utley scores. 6-2 Nationals. Geoff Jenkins singles on a full count pitch from Bergmann. Howard scores. 6-3 DC. Jason Bergmann's done. (5.1 IP, 7 hits, 5 ER, 1 walk, 6 K's, 1 HR, 8.44 ERA)...Saul "Sa-ool" Rivera on in relief, and he throws a wild pitch with Pedro Feliz at the plate. Feliz singles, two runs score, 6-5 Nationals. Chris Coste singles. Greg Dobbs singles. Feliz scores. 6-6. 7 straight singles, 3 off Rivera(that's a blown save and quite a hit on the ERA). "Half-A" Ray King takes the mound. Jimmy Rollins is hit by King's first pitch. Bases loaded. Shane Victorino singles. 7-6 Philly. Ryan Howard grounds into an inning-ending DP.
Philly reliever Ryan Madsen pitches a scoreless seventh. Ryan Howard singles off Ray King to chase the lefty, Joel Hanrahan comes on and gives up a double to Pat Burrell, but then Joel "Unhittable" Hanrahan reemerges and strikes out Geoff Jenkins before getting ground outs from both Pedro Feliz and Chris Coste to end the inning. Still 7-6 Phillies.
Ryan Madsen's back for the top of the eigth. Ronnie Belliard walks on four straight pitches. Felipe Lopez flies out to center. Jesus Flores drops a blooper into left center moving Belliard to second. Madsen out. J.C. Romero on to face Paul Lo Duca. The Philly fans boo Lo Duca as he steps to the plate. Lo Duca pops out. 2 down. Cristian Guzman...grounds out to shor...off Rollins' glove, Belliard scores. 7-7 game!!! Lastings Milledge singles to load the bases. Ryan Zimmerman grounds out. 7-7 middle of eight.
Luis "Set-up" Ayala vs Eric Bruntlett to start the bottom of the eigth. Bruntlett blows a single by Ryan Zimmerman at third. Ayala gets Jimmy Rollins to ground out for the first out. Shane Victorino flies out to left. The Nationals decide to walk Chase Utley and face Ryan Howard. Ayala throws a wild pitch. Now they walk Howard to face Jayson Werth with the bases juiced. 2 on, 2 out. Werth grounds into a force. 7-7 after eight.
Tom "Flash Aaa-aaAH!!" Gordon is on in the ninth. Nick Johnson hits a one-out single. Tom Gordon gets Felipe Lopez to fly out, but then walks Ronnie Belliard and Jesus Flores to load the bases for pinch hitter Willie Harris, who grounds out to end the Nationals' ninth. Can Philly win it with a walk-off? No. Jesus "Everyday" Colome gives up a double and a walk, but gets out of the inning with the score still tied at 7-7 after nine, but Colome comes back in the tenth, after the Nationals go down in order in the top of the frame, and Colome ends up walking in the winning run, after once again walking Utley and Howard to get to Werth, who wises up and doesn't swing this time. 8-7 Phillies win.
Nationals now 3-1.
Cristian Guzman goes 3 for 6 with 1 run scored and 1 RBI, and is batting .400 so far, on 8 hits in 20 at bats, with 2 doubles, 4 runs scored and today's RBI. Guzman seems to be right back where he left off last season.
Lastings Milledge has hit in 5 of 17 at bats so far for a .294 AVG with 1 HR and 2 RBI's.
Ryan Zimmerman leads the team with 2 HR's, but he's only had 3 hits in 18 at bats.
Couldn't help but notice Aaron Boone getting the start at first today, how far is DY from actually playing. Felipe Lopez in left? Lopez made each play that went his way today.
Did the supposedly "light-hitting" Nationals really just put up 19 runs in 3 games with Philly? And they weren't all home runs, and the one low scoring affair, Wednesday's 1-0 DC win, was won with pitching. Who woulda thunk it?
...John Smoltz and Mike Hampton are injured. Pedro Martinez is out for a month or more...Florida's running on fumes, young talented fumes, but fumes nonetheless, and the Nationals just pounded Philly's pitching, so who says the Nationals can't compete in the NL East...and no I'm not just getting carried away with Washington's good start to the season...
Nationals now 3-1.