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Washington Nationals' Stephen Strasburg Struggles, Nats Battle Back To Beat New York Mets, 6-5.

WASHINGTON - JULY 03:  Stephen Strasburg #37 of the Washington Nationals pitches against the New York Mets at Nationals Park on July 3 2010 in Washington DC.  (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON - JULY 03: Stephen Strasburg #37 of the Washington Nationals pitches against the New York Mets at Nationals Park on July 3 2010 in Washington DC. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)
Getty Images

Tonight's Top 5: 

5. 3 Walks? Strasburg? No?: It takes Nats' right-hander Stephen Strasburg 37 pitches (20 strikes) to get through the top of the first this afternoon against the NY Mets. Strasburg has no control of his fastball early, resulting in 3 walks in the top of the frame. Alex Cora walks with one down. Ike Davis takes a two-out walk, and after Jason Bay doubles Cora in from second, Mets' backstop Josh Thole battles Strasburg in a 10-pitch AB before taking walk number three in front of Jeff Francoeur, who flies out to end the inning. 1-0 Mets after a half... 

• Strasburg On His Outing:

Strasburg: "...bottom line, I went out there extremely sped up, and it's going to be one of those days where I'm trying to do too much. I was...we were able to settle in after that, and you know, wasn't one of the greatest performances, but the guys came through today, let me tell you. It was an awesome win." 

Strasburg: "...because I was sped up, it really threw everything out of whack...once I slowed down and everything it all started to work." 

Strasburg: "...I'm starting to figure out what guys are trying to do against me. It's good to see that because every time I make a mistake and don't really get hurt by it, I'm not going to realize the mistake that I made. I learned a few things today, and like I said, it was just a great win for the guys and hopefully next time around I can pitch a little bit better." 

4. 74 Pitches? Not Stephen Strasburg's finest hour. Strasburg needs 74 pitches to get through three. A 10-pitch fourth gives Strasburg some leeway, but after the long first few innings, it's going to be a short outing for the Nats' right-hander. It takes Strasburg 12 pitches to get through the fifth, but that brings his pitch count to 96 and ends his sixth start: 

• Strasburg's Line: 5.0 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 5 K's, 96 pitches, 64 strikes, 6 groundouts, 4 flyouts. 

3. Dickey Cracks...Finally: Mets' right-hander R.A. Dickey holds the Nats scoreless through five. A one-out walk to Willie Harris and an error by Mets' shortstop Ruben Tejada on a tailor-made DP grounder from Ryan Zimmerman set Adam Dunn up with two on and one out in the Nats' sixth with the score still 2-0 NY. Adam Dunn K's swinging. The Hammer!! Josh Willingham lines an RBI single to left. Ivan "Pudge" Rodriguez singles to center to score Zimmerman, 2-2 game after six. 

2. STOREN WARNING!!!/Peaches Bruised:  The Nats' "other" '09 1st Round pick retires the Mets in order in the sixth before the Nats tie it, and comes back out for the seventh with another 1-2-3 frame. 6 up, 6 down for Storen following up on the seven-straight Strasburg had set down to finish his outing. Storen throws 2.0 scoreless and strikes out three. Tyler Clippard takes over in the eighth and gives up three-straight hits. Alex Cora triples to right-center and scores on a David Wright RBI single. Wright moves up on Ike Davis' single, and scores on Mets' catcher Josh Thole's RBI double. A sac fly by Ruben Tejada scores the third run of the inning, and after the Nats tie it at 2-2, they're down by three, 5-2 NY after seven and a half. 

1. K-ROD STINKS!!!!: The Nationals pick up a run on a two-out RBI single by Adam Kennedy in the eighth, but Ian Desmond K's swinging to strand two and end the eighth with Washington down 5-3. The Mets turn to their closer, Francisco "K-Rod" Rodriguez in the ninth. A leadoff walk to Cristian Guzman, one-out single by Willie Harris and two-out walk to Ryan Zimmerman load the bases for Adam Dunn. Dunn launches a 1-2 fastball from K-Rod to deeeeeep center and off the top of the wall, two runs score and after a review it's correctly ruled a two-run double. 5-5 game. Still only one out. Josh Willingham gets the intentionals in front of Pudge, and the veteran catcher comes through again. 1-0 fastball, line drive to right, NATS WIN!! NATS WIN!!! Pudge's single scores Zim from third and completes the comeback!!! 

• Miss The Game? The DC Faithful Were Watching: 

Num Name - Comments
1 MissB - 101
2 jasonkylebates - 82
3 rachel216 - 73
4 d_c_guy - 62
5 brook - 60
6 BloggerVance - 36
7 catdaddy - 28
8 Doncosmic - 17
9 gannett123 - 11
10 Dave from NNN - 8


• Final Score: Nats 6, Mets 5. 

Nationals now 36-46.


1 - Mets' center fielder Angel Pagan pops out to short on the second pitch from Stephen Strasburg. Alex Cora works a one-out walk out of the Nats' starter. Strasburg throws a 98mph fastball by David Wright for a swinging K and the second out. Ike Davis up as Cora steals second, and takes third when Pudge Rodriguez's throw gets through Ian Desmond. Davis takes a two-out walk to bring up Jason Bay. Bay lines to right-center, and it drops in, RBI double, 1-0 Mets. Josh Thole battles Strasburg in a 10-pitch AB that ends with a walk. Jeff Francoeur flies out to end the Mets' first...Nyjer Morgan flies out to left on the second pitch from R.A. Dickey. Willie Harris K's chasing a 2-2 knuckler outside. Ryan Zimmerman pops up foul of first and Ike Davis makes the play. 1-0 Mets after one. 

2 - Mets' shortstop Ruben Tejada goes down swinging at a full-count fastball. Strasburg gets R.A. Dickey waving his bat at a two-strike bender. Angel Pagan pops out to Ryan Zimmerman foul of third, Zim makes the catch, 1-2-3 second for Strasburg...Adam Dunn goes down swinging against the knuckleballer. Josh Willingham takes strike three inside from Dickey. Two down. Pudge Rodriguez doubles by third and into the left field corner. Adam Kennedy grounds to third to end the second. 

3 - Strasburg gets over to cover first on a grounder to Adam Dunn by Alex Cora. David Wright goes back up the middle with a one-out triple. Ike Davis singles on a grounder to third, that a diving play by Zim keeps from being a double. Jayson Bay K's swinging through a fastball. Josh Thole takes a 96mph 2-1 fastball back up the middle for an RBI single, 2-1 Mets. Jeff Francoeur pops out behind short to end the Mets' third...Ian Desmond bounces a sharp grounder off David Wright, but gets thrown out trying to take second. Stephen Strasburg grounds out to short. Two down. Nyjer Morgan's grounder to third ends the third. 

4 - Ruben Tejada grounds weakly toward third, Ryan Zimmerman makes the barehand play and throw to first, one down. R.A. Dickey grounds out to second. Two down. Angel Pagan K's chasing an 0-2 change...Willie Harris pops out to Pagan in short center. One down. Ryan Zimmerman pops up behind the plate. Adam Dunn goes the other way with a two-out single to an empty left side of the infield. Josh Willingham walks with two down. Pudge Rodriguez grounds into a force at second. 2-0 Mets after four. 

5 - Alex Cora grounds out to second, one down. David Wright grounds out to second, Kennedy throws to first. Adam Dunn fields a sharp one-hopper from Ike Davis and steps on first himself, quick fifth for Strasburg...Adam Kennedy grounds back to Dickey on the mound. Ian Desmond grounds out to short, two down. J.D. Martin grounds to first to end the fifth. 

6 - Drew Storen takes over for the Nats against Jason Bay. Popout to short right, one down. Josh Thole grounds to first, Dunn tosses to Storen covering. Two down. Jeff Francoeur can't hold back, and he K's on a check-swing, punched out by the first base ump...Nyjer Morgan grounds out to Ike Davis at first to start the Nats' sixth. Willie Harris takes a one-out walk. Ryan Zimmerman grounds into what should be a DP, but Ruben Tejada drops it and throws late to first. Two on for Dunn. Adam Dunn K's swinging. Josh Willingham lines to left, Harris scores, 2-1 Mets. Ivan Rodriguez lines to center, and it falls in for a single, Zimmerman scores, 2-2 game. 

7 - Drew Storen throws a full-count fastball by Ruben Tejada for the first out of the seventh. R.A. Dickey grounds out to Dunn at first. Two down. Angel Pagan fouls strike three into Pudge's glove...Ian Desmond grounds out to third to start the Nats' seventh. Alberto Gonzalez lines a single to center with one down. Nyjer Morgan grounds into a force at second but beats the back end of the DP to first. Two down for Willie Harris. Morgan steals second on a 3-0 pitch, but Willie Harris grounds out to end the seventh, still 2-2. 

8 - Tyler Clippard starts the eighth for the Nats. Alex Cora triples off the out-of-town scoreboard to start the inning. David Wright rips a line drive to the left side of the infield and off Ryan Zimmerman's glove. Cora scores, 3-2 New York. Ike Davis singles to left on a soft liner. Jason Bay pops out to Adam Dunn in foul territory off first. Josh Thole doubles off the right field wall, Wright scores. 4-2 Mets. Clippard walks Francoeur. Ruben Tejada's sac fly to center scores Ike Davis. 5-2 Mets. Fernando Tatis on to face Doug Slaten with two down. Tatis grounds out to short to end the top of the eighth...Bobby Parnell takes over for NY. Dickey's done. Ryan Zimmerman grounds out to short, one down. Adam Dunn sends a scorcher hopping into center. Josh Willingham walks with one down. Two on for Pudge. Ivan Rodriguez K's swinging at a fastball way out of the zone up high. Adam Kennedy keeps hope alive with an RBI single to center, 5-3 Mets. Ian Desmond K's swinging to end the eighth. 5-3 NY. 

9 - Doug Slaten walks Angel Pagan to start the ninth. Alex Cora grounds back to the mound, Slaten throws it right by second trying for a forced DP. Matt Capps replaces Slaten. David Wright battles for 9 pitches and flies out to center. Pagan takes third. Ike Davis K's chasing an 0-2 fastball. Jason Bay grounds out to second to end the Mets' ninth...K-Rod on to close it. Cristian Guzman takes a leadoff walk to start the Nats' ninth. Nyjer Morgan's robbed by David Wright on a sharp grounder headed for left. Wright throws to first, one down. Willie Harris rips a line drive to right, first and third. Ryan Zimmerman walks to load the bases for Dunn. Adam Dunn flies to deep center and off the top of the wall!! Two runs score, 5-5 game!!! There's a review. Play stands!! Hammer gets the intentionals. Pudge lines an RBI walk-off single to right to score Zimmerman!!!! GAME OVER!!! GAME OVER! PUDGE DOES IT!!!!!!