Washington Nationals Support Jordan Zimmermann, Hold On For 5-3 Win Over Colorado Rockies.

Michael Morse #38 of the Washington Nationals was 3 for 5 with 2 RBI's Friday night in Colorado as the Nats beat the Rockies 5-3. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)

• Coors Field Top 5: 

5. Good/Bad: 24-year-old Juan Nicasio was pitching at high-A ball last season and Double-A this year before he was called up to Colorado. A right-hander with a mid-90's fastball who can occasionally hit triple digits according to every story on him, but struggles with his slider at times, the Rockies' starter's struggling to throw strikes early tonight, and he gives up a leadoff single to right by Rick Ankiel on a 2-2 change. Troy Tulowitzki is thinking double play on a weak grounder over the mound by Danny Espinosa, and the Colorado shortstop reaches down but comes up empty. Two on, 0 outs. A 3-1 fastball clips Ryan Zimmerman on the hand, but he was in the process of swinging so it's called a strike. Zim gets mad and takes a 95 mph full-count fastball to right-center and off the wall. With Ankiel and Espinosa running it's a two-run triple for Zim. 2-0 Nats, but Zimmerman's stranded at third three outs later. 1 for 4 with RISP...

4. Scary Moment: Jordan Zimmermann gives up a leadoff double by Eric Young before striking Dexter Fowler out, and catching Young in a rundown off third on a grounder to the mound by Todd Helton. After pitching around Troy Tulowitzki, the Nats' starter pops up Seth Smith to end a 23-pitch first. A scary moment occurs on the second pitch of the Nats' second, however, when Ian Desmond lines a fastball back up the middle and off Juan Nicasio's head and he appears to be out on contact and also falls on his head on the mound unable to brace himself. Nicasio's out, flat on his back on the mound. Medical personnel are on the field quickly and the 24-year-old right-hander is taken from the field on a cart/stretcher after showing slight signs of movement, but not many. A replay showed fairly clearly he'd been knocked out on contact when the ball hit uncomfortably close to the pitcher's right temple. 

Nicasio's replaced on the mound by right-hander Edgmer Escalona, who gets the first two outs of the Nats' second from the first two batters he faces but surrenders a two-out ground-rule double by Rick Ankiel that bounces over the left field wall and halts Desmond at third when he surely would have scored. The Rockies' right-hander then walks Danny Espinosa to load the bases for Ryan Zimmerman, but a force at second on a grounder up the middle ends a scoreless inning with the Nats still up 2-0 but 1 for 5 with RISP early. 

3. JZAS Meeting: Jordan Zimmermann's up to 56 pitches by the time he retires the Rockies in the third, and then he "doubles" on a two-out pop to right in the Nationals' fourth that falls in unreachable for Colorado right fielder Seth Smith. Rick Ankiel steps in against Escalona 2 for 2 with a double and a single so far, and he's 3 for 3 with an RBI single added to his line in the box score after he takes a 1-1 change back up the middle for an RBI single that drives the Nats' pitcher in from second for a 3-0 Nats' lead. 

2. MORSE CRUSH: Michael Morse gets hold of a 2-2 fastball from Rockies' right-hander Edgmer Escalona and the Nats' power-hitting first baseman's got his 19th HR of 2011. Colorado center fielder Dexter Fowler tracks it and climbs the wall, but he can't bring it back. 420 ft to straight-center for Morse, 4-0 for the Nats and after a 15-pitch 5th in which the Rockies do, however, finally collect their second hit, Jordan Zimmermann's got a four-run lead and another scoreless frame on 84 pitches, 54 of them strikes. Ian Desmond's got his 16th double of the season after he bounces a hard-hit liner off the center field wall to start the sixth. One out later, Jordan Zimmermann collects his second hit of the night with a single to left and Escalona's done. Matt Reynolds comes on and gets an inning-ending DP, 4-0 Nats after five and a half.

1. Clippard Rules: Todd Helton doubles to left to start the Rockies' 6th. That's only the third hit off the Nats' right-hander, but the second opposite field double. Troy Tulowitzki collects Colorado's fourth hit with a line drive single to right, but Seth Smith K's when he's hit by a pitch but follows through with a swing. Two down, eight K's by Zimmermann, but he's done. Henry "Lightning" Rodriguez gives up an RBI single to center by Chris Nelson to make it 4-1, but he looks like he has the third out when a pop to left falls in for a hit after Ian Desmond and Laynce Nix collide and let it drop, 4-2 Nats after Tulo scores. Chris Iannetta hits a two-out line drive single to center and it's 4-3 D.C. Rodriguez walks the bases loaded before he's lifted. Tyler Clippard hasn't given up a hit in 6 AB's with the bases loaded before tonight. The Nats' All-Star right-hander starts Eric Young with three balls then gets three called strikes to leave'em stranded. 

0. Lifted In 1-0 Count: Tyler Clippard gives up two singles but completes a scoreless seventh. That's 1.1 on 15 pitches for the Nats' right-hander. Ian Desmond's 4 for  4 tonight after he singles with one out in the Nats' eighth, but he's stranded three outs later when Clippard stays in and flies to right. Clippard comes back out for the eighth, and issues a leadoff walk to Chris Nelson before picking him off first. One down. Clippard strikes out Ian Stewart, but gives up a two-out single, and when he starts pinch hitter Mark Ellis 1-0, Davey Johnson turns to Drew Storen, who gets a groundout to short to end the eighth.

-1. STOREN WARNING!!: Michael Morse's RBI single in the 9th is the Nationals' fifteenth hit of the night off the Rockies' pitchers and it brings Danny Espinosa around from second after the Nats' second baseman had doubled off Colorado closer Huston Street with one out in the top of the frame. 5-3 Nats. Storen's back out for the ninth and he gives up a one-out double to Dexter Fowler but the Nats' closer gets a groundout from Todd Helton and a fly to center from Tulowitzki to finally end it after 3 hours and 20 minutes in Coors Field. 5-3 final. 

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

Num Name - Comments
1 RobBobS - 104
2 MissB - 96
3 Whupass - 69
4 cat daddy3000 - 48
5 CapsFan75 - 45
6 Dan Shields - 43
7 Joey Fox - 43
8 Jeff T - 41
9 hscer - 34
10 jeff 550 - 26

 

• Doghouse's Post Game WPA Graph: Coming Soon.

Nationals now 54-58.

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