You want to know how loud Nationals Park was after Danny Espinosa's three-run HR in the bottom of the eighth inning last night? Just listen to how crazy the D.C. Faithful were still going after Bryce Harper followed Espinosa's blast up with this moonshot:
After Mike Dunn's PFP gaffe on Adam LaRoche's grounder and Jayson Werth's walk, rookies Steve Lombardozzi and Tyler Moore kept hope alive with back-to-back two-out RBI singles that made it a 6-6 game. Espinosa stepped in against Marlins' reliever and launched his three-run blast to make it 9-6 and Harper followed with his second-deck shot to make it 10-6 in a game the Nationals would win 10-7 taking what looked like a sure-thing win away from the Fish on a night former Nat Justin Maxwell was busy beating the Braves down in Atlanta.
As Stephen Strasburg takes the hill for the Sunday finale with Miami, the Nationals now hold a 3.0 game lead over Atlanta in the NL East. Strasburg's looking to bounce back from a 4.0-inning outing in an 8-0 loss to Philadelphia last time out as he makes his 22nd start of 2012. The Nats' 24-year-old right-hander is (1-0) in two starts against the Nats' NL East rivals from Miami so far this season, having walked two and K'd 13 while allowing 10 hits in 12.0 scoreless innings against the Marlins in 2012. Can the Nationals' no.1 continue his dominance? Can the Nats take three of four? Game time 1:35 pm EDT. You'll have to watch to find out.
• Nats vs the Fish. Here's the Nationals' starting lineup:
— Nationals PR (@NationalsPR) August 5, 2012
#Nationals lineup vs. MIA - Lombardozzi 4, Harper 8, Zimmerman 5, LaRoche 3, Morse 7, Werth 9, Espinosa 6, Flores 2, Strasburg 1