Washington Nationals 0-2 After 8-3 Loss To Florida Marlins...

The Nationals Never Had A Chance...

DC lefty Scott Olsen allows 8 hits, 2 HR's and 8 runs in 3.0 IP. The Florida Marlins get HR's from Jorge Cantu and Dan Uggla, a double and a triple from Ronny Paulino, and a triple that was almost another inside the park HR from Emilio Bonifacio, all before Olsen's out after three. Olsen manages to squeeze 69 pitches into the abbreviated outing, throwing 41 strikes, striking out 2, and walking 3. 

Marlins' right-hander Josh Johnson allows just 7 hits over 6.2 scoreless innings on the mound in which he strikes out 8 Washington Nationals before handing the ball to Leo Nunez, who gives up a HR to Austin Kearns, and Renyel Pinto, who allows a two-out double by Cristian Guzman in the ninth, which scores the Nationals' third run and makes it a respectable 8-3 loss to Florida.

At the Plate...Things Aren't That Bad...

Nick Johnson finishes the night 3 for 4 with a run scored. Cristian Guzman's 3 for 5 with an RBI, Austin Kearns hits his first HR of '09, and hits it far enough to make Adam Dunn jealous. Dunn is 1 for 4 with a line drive through the dramatic shift, and Jesus Flores 2 for 4 with a run scored. Lastings Milledge? 0 for 4 with 2 K's. Ryan Zimmerman 0 for 5. In what is now a veteran-heavy lineup with Guzman, Dunn, Johnson and Kearns, it's the kids at the top of the order who aren't producing, (through the first two)...

Lastings Milledge looks about as lost at bat as he does in the outfield. Ryan Zimmerman's struggling at the plate and he keeps sailing and skipping throws to first, where luckily, (so far), Nick Johnson's been playing, and keeping bad throws from Zim from looking worse...Milledge starts '09, 0 for 8 with 4 K's. Zimmerman's 1 for 9 with 3 K's. 

Did See Something, Though...

Julian Tavarez, Joe Beimel and Joel Hanrahan. After scoring 8 runs in the first three innings tonight, Florida had a total of 20 runs in their first 11 frames facing the Nationals' pitchers, but Tavarez threw three scoreless and Beimel and Hanrahan came out as designed for the eighth and ninth innings as if the Nationals had the lead...and it worked...now imagine a quality start in which the starter goes six, Tavarez pitches the seventh and Beimel holds the lead for Hanrahan...who walks one or two...and then gets down to business saving whatever leads Washington can get him...

Marlins win. 8-3 final. 

Nationals now 0-2.

?'s For the DC Faithful...

1) How long does Manny Acta leave Lastings Milledge out there twisting in the wind in center if his struggles continue?

2) Does Elijah Dukes finally get off the bench this afternoon? A start in center perhaps?

3) Uh? Mr. Belliard...Big fan! But, uh? What's going on out there?

4) Can you, as a fan of the Washington Nationals even try to pretend you didn't like seeing Austin Kearns launch one?

5) Hanley Ramirez is all over the plate isn't he?

For the Completists...Full Game Report After The Jump...


Washington at Florida. Game 2 of 162.


Lastings Milledge takes the first three pitches from Florida starter Josh Johnson tonight, and it’s 1-2 after Johnson dials in two straight fastballs, and Milledge swings through the next heater for a K to start the game. Cristian Guzman beats out a weak grounder to second that Dan Uggla takes his time and throws to first, late. Ryan Zimmerman flies to Cody Ross in right. Adam Dunn lines one off Josh Johnson’s glove-right-into-Uggla’s...Cristian Guzman has to get rid of it quick, firing to first to get Emilio Bonifacio. Ronnie Belliard tries to backhand Cameron Maybin’s ground ball up the middle, and has it bounce off his wrist. Maybin steals second with Hanley Ramirez hunching over the right side of the plate. Olsen bounces a bender a foot in front of Jesus Flores and it jumps off the dirt and far enough for Maybin to take third. Ramirez K’s swinging over a two-strike bender off the plate from Olsen. Jorge Cantu gets a hold of one...Dunn tracks it back to the wall...and watches it sail over...2-0 Marlins. Olsen gets Dan Uggla looking to end the first. 


Nick Johnson slaps the first pitch under the shortstop’s glove, single. Josh Johnson throws three fastballs by Austin Kearns. Belliard’s hustling, and safe at first on his own DP grounder, when Cantu can’t catch the relay. Johnson gets Jesus Flores staring at a mid-90’s slider to end a second scoreless frame...Jeremy Hermida sends a grounder out to short, Guzman fields and throws. Ryan Zimmerman stabs a line drive from Cody Ross. Zimmerman has no chance on Ronnie Paulino’s laser to left. Scott Olsen walks the opposing pitcher. Emilio Bonifacio lifts a blooper over short, and Ronny Paulino beats Dunn’s throw home...3-0 Fish. Cameron Maybin grounds back to the mound...3-0 Florida after two.


Josh Johnson gets a groundout from Scott Olsen to start the third. Leadoff Lasto gets a two-strike 96 mph fastball low and inside that he can’t reach. Cristian Guzman gets sawed off, but it deadens the ball enough for him to reach first safely. Zimmerman grounds to short, Hanley Ramirez goes non-chalant with the toss to Uggla covering... Zimmerman throws out Hanley Ramirez. Olsen walks Cantu in front of Uggla, who lifts a Dolphin Stadium home run to left and off the scoreboard, 5-0 FIsh. Olsen walks Jeremy Hermida. Cody Ross grounds into a force at second, but Hermida breaks up the DP attempt. Ronny Paulino triples to center over Milledge, Ross trots home, 6-0 Fish. Josh Johnson singles this time. 7-0 Marlins. Emilio Bonifacio flies over Milledge’s head, Milledge dives...and comes up empty, off the glove...8-0. Cameron Maybin flies out...


Adam Dunn’s liner gets through the dramatic shift. Nick Johnson hits the second straight single through second. Austin Kearns chops out to short weakly enough to avoid the DP. Ronnie Belliard goes down chasing heat. Jesus Flores gets a bender where everyone else got heat, and he K’s chasing to end the DC fourth...Julian Tavarez takes over on the mound facing Hanley Ramirez. Ryan Zimmerman picks a bad hop near his head, but throws short of first and Johnson can’t grab it...Ramirez safe. Jorge Cantu...grounds to short, Guzman fields, tosses across his body to Belliard to Johnson, double play. Tavarez gets Uggla swinging....8-0 Fish after four.


Julian Tavarez bunts too hard, and lines out to first. Lastings Milledge chops a grounder to third, and Bonifacio charges in and throws him out. Cristian Guzman grounds out...Tavarez vs Hermida to start the Marlins’ fifth. The bottom drops out of a slow sinker to get Hermida swinging. Cody Ross goes down chasing a two-strike slider off the plate. Ronny Paulino grounds out to Zimmerman at third, the throw to first is chest high and Paulino’s out. 


Ryan Zimmerman flies out to Maybin in center. Dunn grounds out. Nick Johnson chases a high two-strike fastball for a swinging strike three. Josh Johnson through six...Julian Tavarez gets Josh Johnson to chase a two-strike sinker outside. Julian Tavarez gets over to cover first on a weak ground ball from Bonifacio, Nick Johnson fields and shuffles to first, in time. Cameron Maybin chops the first pitch to third, and Zimmerman fields and throws him out charging in...


Austin Kearns flies out to left to start  the Nationals’ seventh. Ronnie Belliard shoots a single through short. Bonifacio knocks down a sharp grounder from Jesus Flores, who beats Bonifacio’s throw to first. Pinch hitter Josh Bard goes down swinging. Josh Johnson’s done. Leo Nunez warming and in, Guzman grounds into a force at second...Joe Beimel makes his debut with DC. And issues a leadoff walk to Hanley Ramirez. (ed. note - "He'll fit right in..."), Jorge Cantu gets sawed off but drops a bloop single into short left, Ramirez to second. Ryan Zimmerman catches a ground ball from Uggla at his hip and fires to second, but the relay to first is too late for the DP. Cody Ross grounds to short, Guzman tosses to Belli for the inning-ending force and Beimel’s first scoreless.


Ryan Zimmerman vs Leo Nunez in the eighth. Ryan Zimmerman takes a 2-2 pitch out to right, just short of the track. Adam Dunn skies the second out to center. Nick Johnson tears into a 3-1 fastball and lifts it over second for a single. Austin Kearns gets a 96 mph heater up high and shows everyone the empty orange seats in left. 8-2 Fish. Ronnie Belliard’s swinging bunt back to the mound is the third out...”Wild” Joel Hanrahan is on to get some work. Ronny Paulino works a walk. Pinch hitter Ross Gload grounds out to Nick Johnson. Emilio Bonifacio can't hold back on a two-strike slider in the dirt. 95 mph outside edge, Hanley Ramirez goes down swinging...


Renyel Pinto tries to get the last three outs. Jesus Flores takes two on a line drive off the wall in left. Elijah Dukes swings through a high 91 mph heater. Lastings Milledge lifts a 2-2 pitch out to center. Cristian Guzman doubles to the right center gap to score Flores. 8-3 Marlins. Zimmerman K's swinging to end it.



Nationals now 0-2.

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