Washington Nationals Fight Back With 6-Run 7th, Take 8-6 Decision Over St. Louis Cardinals.

• Tonight's Nats Park Top 5: 

5. 0-1 Curves: Two hung curves from Washington Nationals' right-hander Yunesky Maya give the St. Louis Cardinals a 2-0 lead before the fans finish filing in to Nats Park for the Nationals' return to the nation's capital. Ryan Theriot hits a broken bat single to center on an 0-1 curve after a called first strike, and one out later Yunesky Maya makes the mistake of leaving another 0-1 curve up high for Albert Pujols to destroy. Line drive to left and into the visitor's bullpen. 2-0 St. Louis in Nationals Park. Cards' starter Jaime Garcia retires the Nationals in order in the bottom of the frame, striking Ryan Zimmerman out with a 1-2 curve in Zim's first AB since April 9th...

4. Strained Intercostal: Roger Bernadina's in the on-deck circle with Wilson Ramos up after a one-out single by Danny Espinosa in the Nationals' second. Rick Ankiel started the game in center and there's no word why he's been lifted. Bernadina manages to connect with an 0-1 curve, and there are two runners on when Yunesky Maya comes up in the eighth spot as part of Nats' Skipper Jim Riggleman's lineup experimentation. Swinging K. Two stranded, and still 2-0 Cards after two. Around the same time reporters were wondering what happened to Ankiel, reports surfaced which said Adam LaRoche would have season-ending surgery to repair the torn labrum and rotator cuff issues in his left shoulder. At least ZIm's back. (ed. note - "The official word, announced a few innings later, is a "strained intercostal muscle" for Ankiel. No word on whether a DL stint will be necessary.")

3. Werth Goes Back, Back: Yunesky Maya makes another mistake, this one a first-pitch change that's up and inside to born-again Cardinals' outfielder Lance Berkman, who sends it screaming out to right and into the Nationals' bullpen. Solo HR, 3-0 Cards. Nats' first baseman Michael Morse doubles to start the Nationals' fourth, but two outs later he's still standing at second. Roger Bernadina, who singled off the Cards' lefty in his first at bat, works the count full, fouls off two breaking balls (slider, then curve) and singles to center on a 3-2 heater from Jaime Garcia. Morse finally scores from second, 3-1 Cardinals after four.

2. Not Ma-thee-us, But Matthews: Ryan Theriot reaches down for a 69 mph curve from Yunesky Maya in the Cardinals' fifth, connecting and singling to center with one down. Colby Rasmus drives a first-pitch fastball to center and over the outfield wall on a hop for a ground-rule double that puts runners on second and third. Albert Pujols is walked intentionally to load the bases for Lance Berkman, who rolls a DP grounder to short, Desmond, instead of taking it himself, makes a weak toss to a surprised Danny Espinosa, whose throw to first is too late to turn it. Theriot scores, 4-1 Cards. Yadier Molina singles to center. Rasmus scores. 5-1 and 6-1 on a single by Andrew Brown. Maya's done. Ryan Mattheus gets his first major league out from Skip Schumaker, who lines out to short. 

1. Almost, Not Quite: The Nationals get two runners on in front of Ryan Zimmerman in the fifth. Jayson Werth reaches on an error after hitting into a force at second. Ian Desmond works a six-pitch walk out of Jaime Garcia. Zimmerman's down 1-2 when he rolls a tailor-made DP grounder back up the middle, Theriot to Schumaker to Pujols, 6-1 after five. The Nats threaten again in the sixth, with Michael Morse singling (2 for 3 so far) and Danny Espinosa reaching on an infield hit deep in the hole at short. Ryan Theriot bobbles a grounder to second from Wilson Ramos, no play at second. Bases loaded for the Shark. Roger Bernadina grounds weakly to second and the Cards get the out at first, and double up Wilson Ramos as Morse scores. 6-2 game. Bases loaded and no outs, and that's all the Nats get. 

0. The Big Comeback, Hey: Henry Rodriguez dropped a 2-2 slider on Albert Pujols to get the Cards' slugger looking for the first out of what ends up a scoreless seventh for the hard-throwing right hander...The Nationals get two runners on in front of Ryan Zimmerman again in the bottom of the frame. Miguel Batista's on for St. Louis. Jayson Werth walks, Ian Desmond reaches on an infield single, and Ryan Zimmerman connects for an opposite field RBI double to right that's just fair. 6-3 Cards. Second and third for Morse, and an RBI groundout scores Desmond. 6-4 Cards. Runner on third, and Left-Side Danny Espinosa singles to center to make it 6-5. Wilson Ramos singles to center. Two on, two out for Roger Bernadina, who'll face lefty Trever Miller. HBP. Pudge Rodriguez up, bases loaded, and Miller throws a wild one. Wild pitch! Espinosa scores from third to tie it. 6-6 game. Laynce Nix vs Jason Motte: Nix fights his way through a 10-pitch at bat...11 pitches and a...walk. 7-6 Nats. 8-6 on an opposite field single by Werth! THE BIG COMEBACK HEYYYY!!!!!

-1. STOREN WARNING!!!: Tyler Clippard takes over in the eighth and strikes out two Cards in a 12-pitch 1-2-3 frame. The Nats' Flat-Brimmed Closer Drew Storen is on in the ninth after the Nats fail to add to their lead. Pinch hitter Mark Hamilton flies to center on the first pitch he sees. ONE! Ryan Theriot takes ball four way up and inside. One-out walk. Colby Rasmus up, Theriot steals second. Rasmus flies out to left, TWO!!! The Nationals walk Albert Pujols intentionally, and Lance Berkman grounds back to the mound. The Nationals win! THE NATIONALS WIN!!! 8-6 final. Storen's 16th save. Henry Rodriguez gets the curly-W! 

• Miss The Game? The DC Faithful Were Watching...

Num Name - Comments
1 dc Roach - 234
2 Dan Shields - 82
3 G8RB8 - 76
4 Jeff T - 73
5 Princess Jazzy - 40
6 jeff550 - 38
7 RoscoeNats - 34
8 kingfishfarms - 34
9 doncosmic - 33
10 rachel216 - 32

• Doghouse's Post Game WPA Graph...Coming Soon. Nationals now 31-36.

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