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This Comeback Sticks, Nationals Beat Reds, 3-2 On Hard Slide!!!

It was cruising along like it was gonna be just another one of those games, you know, the other forty-two of them, but these are the new Washington Nationals, the ones that are bound to sign Stephen Strasburg, who is bound to pan out, at exactly the same time the coming wave of prospects crests, lifting the Nationals above the salary excesses of their NL East rivals and at least into Wild Card contention...These are the Washington Nationals who walked out of a two-and-a-half hour rain delay and picked up where they left off last night, tying the Cincinnati Reds in a game they would eventually lose, but today they refined their technique, and waited to strike in the eighth, turning a 2-1 deficit into a 3-2 win by forcing an error, the fate that usually befalls the team with the most combined E's of any roster in baseball. The Washington Nationals are turning the tables, this is how it happened tonight...

HEADLINES: (After the Jump...*)

E: 57

E: 5

What The ..... Is a DH?

Miss The Game? The DC Faithful Were Watching, In DC, Virginia, NJ, Syracuse, NY And Some Place Called Australia, Sounds Fancy!

Nationals Win, 3-2 Final. 

DWDT: 3.

For The Completists, An Incomplete Game Report After The Jump...

Nationals now 16-42.


E: 57 - DC lefty John Lannan gave up a two-out single to Reds' shortstop Alex Gonzalez in the second, but he got the ground ball he wanted out of Cincy 1B Adam Rosales, only to have straight-shooter Ryan Zimmerman misfire on the throw to first, for his 7th Error of '09, the Nationals' 57th E as a team, and Reds' first run of the game, 1-0 Cincinnati. Two innings later it was A-Gon again, with an RBI single that scores a run in the fourth, bringing Johnny Gomes around after he was hit by a pitch from Lannan in the first AB of the inning. 2-0 Reds after four. Lannan's afternoon would end after he'd allowed 5 hits, 2 runs, 1 ER and 2 walks, with 2 K's and a 3.51 ERA after 6.0 IP.

The Nationals score a run in the sixth on three singles by Josh Willingham, Wil Nieves and pinch hitter Nick Johnson and an RBI groundout by DC SS Cristian Guzman. 2-1 Reds after six, and Julian Tavarez takes over on the hill for John Lannan. Tavarez gives up a two-out walk in the eighth, but is otherwise unharmed as he holds the Nationals close through the top of the frame, and in the bottom of the eighth inning, the Nationals strike...

Daniel Ray Herrera comes out of the pen to replace Carlos Fisher after a leadoff single in the Nationals' eighth, when most are expecting maybe, Arthur Rhodes?, but it's the third game of a road series and the Reds have won the first two, so Manager Dusty Baker goes to Herrera, at least for one batter, and the Cincy lefty allows a second single to Anderson Hernandez and the Nationals are rolling with two on and no outs and only a one-run deficit to recover from, at least, that is, until Cristian Guzman bunts too hard and the Reds take down the lead runner at third. Alberto Gonzalez singles, but not hard enough to score the tying run, so it's Ryan Zimmerman due up, with the bases loaded and a new pitcher on the way out to the mound...

E: 5 - Right-hander Nick Masset replaces Herrera, and Ryan Zimmerman steps into the batter's box. A 91 mph fastball from Masset catches the high outside corner as Zimmerman swings and misses, then a slider falls off the outside of the plate, and Zimmerman holds back. Masset comes back with a four-seam fastball that bounces, and follows with another low heater that hits 95 but is low in the zone and short of the plate. The 3-1 pitch is a fastball that Zimmerman connects with, but only for a groundout and a DP if the Reds can turn it quickly enough, Alex Gonzalez to Brandon Phillips at second, but DC's Alberto Gonzalez is charging from first, and his hard slide rocks Phillips and sends his throw flying by first, Anderson Hernandez comes around to score and Cristian Guzman follows, and the Nationals have a 3-2 lead. 

Enter Joe Beimel...

Joe Beilmel failed in his first audition as closer, but Manny Acta put his trust in Beimel to save tonight's game. Jay Bruce grounds out, Alex Gonzalez flies out, and Adam Rosales does the same. Joe Beimel saves the game. The Legend Continues...What? You Haven't Heard The Legend Of Joe Beimel. Miss Chatter had the first story I read about it back in early May, in a DC Sports Bog article entitled, "The Youtube Legend Of Joe Beimel", and if you still don't know what I mean, it's about time you did:

What The ..... Is a DH?

Starting with tomorrow's 7:38 pm EST start, the Washington Nationals make a 15-game trip through the American League East, 3 this weekend against Tampa Bay, followed by 3 with NY's Yankees next week and 3 each with the Blue Jays, and Red Sox at home in DC after that and then three with the Orioles before the Nationals get back to their own league. In 75 Interleague since moving to the nation's capital in 2005, the Washington Nationals are 36-39. Stammen vs Garza in the Trop tonight...

Cincinnati Reds At Washington Nationals. Game 58 or 59 of 162. 

(ed. note - "Arrived home in the bottom of the second, where the GameReport picks up...")


Bottom of Second...


...Josh Willingham hits a low liner to Brandon Phillip for the first out of the second at second. Austin Kearns draws a one-out walk . Wil Nieves should have singled if Alex Gonzalez hadn’t been there to make a slick fielding play at short. John Lannan...


Bottom of Third...


Cristian Guzman slaps a single through second for the Nationals’ first hit of the game. Alberto Gonzalez chops one to short, Guzman’s running so he avoids the DP. Ryan Zimmerman take a one-out walk in front of Adam Dunn, Dunn K’s swinging under a high heater from Owings. It’s the slow stuff that gets Elijah Dukes swinging for the final out of the third. 


John Lannan hits Johnny Gomes and then walks Ramon Hernandez. Jay Bruce grounds into a force at second, first and third with one down. Alex Gonzalez knocks Bruce in with a line drive single. 2-0 Reds. Adam Rosales K’s swinging over an 0-2 curve. Micah Owings pops out to short right, Alberto Gonzales goes back ot get it...Josh Willingham smokes a line drive to left to start third. Austin Kearns swings over a 2-2 slider outside. Wil Nieves gets hit in the back with a curveball gone bad. Lannan tries to lay down a bunt, but he hits it too hard, and Adam Rosales charges in from first to cut down the lead runner at third. Cristian Guzman grounds out to first. 


John Lannan gets a weak pop behind first from Jerry Hairston, Jr. Elijah Dukes glides back ot catch Willy Taveras flyout. Lannan walks Brandon Phillips to bring up Johnny Gomes with two down. Johhny Gomes pops out behind second to end the Reds’ fifth...Alberto Gonzalez takes one on the wrists, and takes a base. Ryan Zimmerman works the count full, and goes the other way with a liner right at Bruce in left. Adam Dunn pops out to second. Elijah Dukes swings through a two-strike fastball to end the fifth. 


Cristian Guzman slides to field Ramon Hernandez’s grounder, and rolls and throws from his backside to first, in time! Josh Willingham’s waitiing for Jay Bruce’s liner. Alex Gonzalez flies to right center and Dukes gets to it in time...Josh Willingham goes the other way and drops a bloop single into right. Kearns pops up to first, for Rosales. Wil Nieves reaches down for fastball and lines to left to put two on for Nick Johnson, who singles to right to load the bases for Cristian Guzman grounds into a force at third, but a run scores, 2-1 Reds. Alberto Gonzalez flies out to Taveras to end the sixth. 


Tavarez vs Rosales to start the seventh. Rosales flies out to left center, Hammer and Dukes almost collide. Josh Willingham is at a full spring to catch Chris Dickerson’s sinking flyout. Jerry Hairston, Jr. K’s chasing junk from Tavarez...The Reds bring on Carlos Fisher to start the seventh against Zimmerman. Zim draws a leadoff walk. Adam Dunn pops out to the infield. Elijah Dukes flies out to right on the first pitch. 1-2 pitch to Kearns, and he K’s trying to hold up on a bender that ends in the dirt. 


Tavarez gets a weak grounder from Willy Taveras to second. Brandon Phillips grounds to third, Zimmerman guns him. Johnny Gomes takes a two-out walk from Tavarez. Ramon Hernandez takes strike three...Carlos Fisher’s back for the eighth, facing off against Willie Harris lines a single to right to start the home half of the frame. Anderson "Elvis" Hernandez is going to see lefty Daniel Ray Herrera. Willie Harris gets hit with a pick off play. Anderson Hernandez sneaks a single through short, two on for Guzman. Guzman bunts toward short and the pitcher throws to third, in time. Alberto Gonalez shoots a fly ball to center to load the bases. Ryan Zimmerman grounds to short, Phillips to Alex Gonzalez, Alberto Gonzalez slides in hard and the DP throw to first sails, two runs score, 3-2 DC. Adam Dunn lines to left with two down. Elijah Dukes K’s chasing...


Joe Beimel comes on to end it. Ryan Zimmerman cuts off Jay Bruce’s grounder to short, and throws to first, in time!! Alex Gonzalez flies out to left!!! The Nationals win!!! 3-2 final.

Nationals now 16-42.