Sure, sure, it was a two-game set. But it still counts as a Sweeeeep!! The now 19-15 Washington Nationals took two straight from the defending American League Champs with a 5-4 win over the Detroit Tigers this afternoon in the nation's capital. Nats' starter Dan Haren's teammates gave him a lead to work with in the bottom of the first, scoring three runs on RBI singles by Bryce Harper, a suddenly-hot Adam LaRoche and the always-on Ian Desmond. 3-0 Nationals early. The Tigers scored one run on Haren in the top of the second with the opposing pitcher, Doug Fister, singling up the middle with two on and two out to drive in a run, but Haren stopped the Tigers there and held the defending NL East champs to just that run over his first five innings of work on the mound in Nats Park.
The Nationals scored two more runs in the bottom of the second inning with Zimmerman and LaRoche driving in Denard Span and Rogers Bernadina in back-to-back ABs after Span was hit by a pitch and Bernadina bunted his way on. Haren took the Nats' 5-1 lead into the sixth but surrendered a three-run home run by Tigers' pinch hitter Matt Tuiasosopo that made it a one run game at 5-4.
Ryan Mattheus threw a scoreless inning of relief in the seventh, giving up a two-out single by Prince Fielder but nothing else. Drew Storen came on in the eighth for the Nationals and gave up a one-out single, but nothing else. Rafael Soriano came on in the ninth, looking for save no.12. "Pitch it, Soriano! Pitch it, Soriano! Strike him out, Soriano! Strike him out, Soriano!" Soriano had a moment to himself, wrote a message on the mound and stepped in against Austin Jackson and got him looking with a high full-count heater. ONE!! Torii Hunter grounded sharply to second. TWO!!!! Miguel Cabrera vs Rafael Soriano. 5-4 game. Single! Prince Fielder stepped in as the go-ahead run, and flew out to deeeep center. Denard Span with the catch!
Work's done, untuck that jersey, son!!!
The Nationals took two-straight, their first two wins ever over the Tigers and improved to four games over .500 with the win. A three-game set with the Chicago Cubs starts at 7:05 pm EST on Friday.
You have 24 hours to enjoy the SWEEEEP!!!!
Nationals win, 5-4 final.
Nationals now 19-15