PHILADELPHIA - SEPTEMBER 20: Starting pitcher Tommy Milone #46 of the Washington Nationals throws a pitch during a game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on September 20, 2011 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
• Tommy Milone: Starting pitchers Tommy Milone and Kyle Kendrick threw 6.0 scoreless each this afternoon in the first game of a day/night doubleheader between the visiting Washington Nationals and the Philadelphia Phillies in Citizens Bank Park. Milone, 24, pitched his way out of trouble early, stranding two after back-to-back two-out singles in the first and pitching around a two-out error by today's third baseman Stephen Lombardozzi in the second, then retired seven-straight before hitting former Nats' infielder Pete Orr to put the leadoff runner on in the Phillies' fifth. Three outs later, Orr was stranded at second, and after giving up two singles in the sixth, Milone popped up Philadelphia outfielder Ben Francisco and struck out catcher Erik Kratz to complete his sixth scoreless frame on 93 pitches, 62 strikes. Milone's Line: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 K's, 8/3 GO/FO. Philly righty Kyle Kendrick was equally impressive, giving up just four hits as well and striking out four to complete 6.0 scoreless on 79 pitches.
Phillies' right-hander Michael Schwimer took over for Kendrick in the seventh and surrendered back-to-back one-out singles to Stephen Lombardozzi and pinch hitter Alex Cora. Cora's weak liner to right allowed Lombardozzi to go first-to-third to put runners on the corners, and the Nats' rookie apparently scored on the Ian Desmond squeeze bunt that followed, but it was only apparent upon seeing the replay. Home plate ump Mark Carlson blew the call and punched Lombardozzi out on the play at the plate and it looked like the Nationals' would waste another RISP opportunity until Roger Bernadina connected with a 2-0 fastball from Schwimer that the Nats' outfielder launched into the second deck high above right field, over the Budweiser ad and just below the Power Ade banner. The three-run blast was Bernadina's 7th of 2011, the 3-0 lead would last all of three batters.
• Slatened: Nats' lefty Doug Slaten started the seventh in relief of Milone and promptly gave up back-to-back singles to former Nats' Pete Orr and Michael Martinez before he was lifted in favor of right-hander Tyler Clippard. The Phillies countered with left-handed Nat-killer Raul Ibanez, who entered the AB 66 for 208 with a .317/.381/.601 slash against the Nationals, having hit 12 doubles and 15 HR's against Washington in 55 games and 236 plate appearances prior to today's game. Two pitches later the Phillies' outfielder was 67 for 209 with 16 HR's after he crushed an 0-2 fastball from Clippard and sent it soaring out over the AT&T ad in right field for a game-tying three-run HR. 3-3 after seven and still 3-3 after nine.
• Free Baseball: Sean Burnett threw a scoreless eighth, Tom Gorzelanny held the Phillies at bay in the ninth, and the Nats got to Philly right-hander Michael Stutes in the top of the tenth. Pinch hitter Michael Morse took a two-out walk in a pinch hit appearance, and when the Philly reliever got behind Danny Espinosa, the Nats' second baseman was put on too, prompting Nationals' skipper Davey Johnson to bring Ryan Zimmerman up for a pinch hit appearance in which the clutch-hitting Face of the Franchise came through. Zimmerman hit a weak liner to center that Phillies' outfielder John Mayberry charged but couldn't reach. Morse came around to score ahead of the throw in and the Nationals took a 4-3 lead.
• STOREN WARNING!!: Nats' closer Drew Storen took over in the bottom of the 10th, surrendering a leadoff double before shutting the Phillies down, retiring Pete Orr and Brian Schneider, then walking Chase Utley to get to Ross Gload, whose groundout to short ended the game. 4-3 Nats win. Storen earns save no. 39 of 2011. Tom Gorzelanny gets the Curly-W. And there's still one to play...
• Miss The Game? The DC Faithful Were Watching...
|Num||Name - Comments|
|1||dc Roach - 238|
|2||Doghouse - 78|
|3||jbg2772 - 75|
|4||RobBobS - 70|
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|6||MissB - 68|
|7||sullyzz - 54|
|8||ricksnats - 46|
|9||jeff550 - 27|
|10||Doncosmic - 21|
• Doghouse's Post Game WPA Graph: "Game 152: It's never easy.":
- Wasted quality: Tommy Milone (+35.0%) goes 6 IP, giving up neither a run nor a walk and fanning two.
Bad bunt + bad call: Ian Desmond's (-8.8%) safety squeeze doesn't get quite far enough for the ump to notice that the catcher missed the tag (-13.2%).
- SHARK ATTAAAAAACK! Roger Bernadina (+28.1%) jacks a three-run shot for lead (+39.8%).
- FAIL relief is FAIL: Doug Slaten (-13.1%) puts on the first two batters he faces in the 7th without getting an out, then Tyler Clippard (-25.0%) coughs up the tying HR (-33.6%).
CLUTCH (which still doesn't exist): Ryan Zimmerman (+36.8%) singles in the go-ahead run in the 10th (+36.8%).
- Just steady enough: Tom Gorzelanny (+13.4%) and Sean Burnett (+10.5%) allow some runners but keep it tied through 9, while Drew Storen (+19.4%) works around a leadoff double to save the win.
Nationals now 73-79