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Washington Nationals Lose Lead In Eighth, Drop 2-1 Decision To San Diego Padres In Series Finale.

April 26, 2012; San Diego, CA, USA;  Washington Nationals starting pitcher Edwin Jackson (33) throws during the first inning against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park.  Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-US PRESSWIRE
April 26, 2012; San Diego, CA, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Edwin Jackson (33) throws during the first inning against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-US PRESSWIRE

• "Up There To Rock N Roll": Ian Desmond took a first pitch fastball for a ride on a line drive that sailed right into San Diego center fielder Cameron Maybin's glove on the first pitch Padres' right-hander Edwin Volquez threw tonight in Petco Park. One pitch, one out for the former Cincinnati Red. San Diego infielder Orlando Hudson made a backhand stab on a short-hop line drive to second by Danny Espinosa before throwing to first for out no.2, and Chase Headley settled in under a pop to third by Chad Tracy and made the catch to end a quick nine-pitch 1-2-3 top of the first in the series finale of the three-game set with the visiting Washington Nationals. Nats' right-hander Edwin Jackson needed 14 pitches to retire the Padres in order in the bottom of the frame...

• LaRoche's 6th: Adam LaRoche K'd looking at a 2-2 fastball inside. One down in the second. Jayson Werth thought the full-count change down and away from Volquez had missed, but Werth was punched out and had to head back to the dugout instead of going to first, for two pitches at least, before Rick Ankiel flew to center to end a 14-pitch 1-2-3 second by the Padres' starter. Edwin Jackson gave up a one-out ground-rule double to left-center on a 95 mph first pitch four-seamer to San Diego slugger Yonder Alonso, but got a groundout back to the mound out of Orlando Hudson for the second out of the Padres' second before issuing a two-out walk to Cameron Maybin. With two on and two out, the Nats' right-hander got a ground ball to second from Jason Bartlett that Espinosa gobbled up before throwing to first for out no.3 of E-Jax' 17-pitch scoreless second.

• Edinson v Edwin: Nats' catcher Wilson Ramos singled to left with one down in the third for the Nationals' first hit of Edinson Volquez, but the 24-year-old catcher was stranded at second after a sac bunt by Edwin Jackson and a pop to first by Ian Desmond ended a 11-pitch third that had the Padres' right-hander at 34 pitches after three scoreless innings on the mound. Edwin Jackson recorded his second K and issued his first walk, putting Chris Denorfia on before striking Chase Headley out with a filthy full-count slider for K and out no.3 of the night. A 22-pitch fourth had Jackson at 53 pitches after 3.0 scoreless in Petco Park.

• Blasted Chicken!!: Adam LaRoche crushed a 2-1 change from Volquez, lining off the right field wall for a two-out double, (LaRoche's 6th of 2012), in the top of the fourth, but Jayson Werth's groundout to short ended a fourth scoreless frame by the Padres' right-hander who was up to 51 pitches total after a 17-pitch inning. The San Diego Chicken suddenly appeared atop the first base dugout in the bottom of the fourth and back-to-back hits by Nick Hundley and Yonder Alonso followed with the Padres' catcher lining to center for a leadoff single and then going first-to-third on Alonso's second double of the game. A filthy 0-2 slider got Orlando Hudson swinging for the first out of the inning. Edwin Jackson walked Cameron Maybin to load the bases and bring Jason Bartlett up with the bases loaded and then struck Bartlett out with another 0-2 bender before retiring the opposing pitcher to escape a two-on, no-out jam in spite of that blasted Chicken's taunts.

• Dool: Wilson Ramos walked with one down in the Nationals' fifth, but the first walk of the night by Edinson Volquez, who's walked 15 (5.38 BB/9) in 23.0 IP this season before tonight, didn't lead to any offense in the Nats' half of the frame. Still 0-0 after four and a half. Edwin Jackson's 12-pitch, 1-2-3 bottom of the fifth ended with K no. 6 of the night for the Nats' right-hander, who threw a 1-2 slider by a swinging Chase Headley to end E-Jax' own scoreless frame. 82 pitches total, 48 of them strikes for Edwin Jackson through five. Volquez needed just 12 pitches to retire the top of the Nats' order in order in a 1-2-3 sixth, after which the Padres' right-hander was at 84 pitches total.

• #AROOOOOOOOOOO!!!! No.2: Edwin Jackson got the first two outs of San Diego's sixth with five pitches, but left a first-pitch fastball up for Orlando Hudson on pitch no.6, and the O-Dog just missed his second home run in two games, settling for a two-out triple and just the fourth hit of the night off E-Jax. The Nats' starter got over to cover on a swinging bunt by Cameron Maybin, however, and Adam LaRoche gracefully and effortlessly made a glove toss to the right-handed pitcher, who got through his own scoreless sixth with the game still 0-0. For four pitches at least. Edinson Volquez got a groundout to third from Adam LaRoche with a 1-0 sinker, but left a 93 mph 0-1 fastball up inside for Jayson Werth, who hit his second HR of 2012 to left field and into the stands some 375 ft from home. A solo blast for Werth and a 1-0 Nats' lead after six and a half. Apparently Werth didn't like the first pitch curve Volquez threw inside on him...

• 105 Pitches: Pinch hitter Jeremy Hermida ripped a line drive single to right with one out in the Padres' seventh, but Edwin Jackson had two down when Chris Denorfia hit one straight down off home plate that high up over short, making it a tough for Ian Desmond, who bounced a throw to first that not even Adam LaRoche could pick. Two on, two out and Edwin Jackson's done after 6.2 IP, 6 H 0 R (pending), 3 BB, 6 K's, 105 pitches, 62 strikes, 12/2 GO/FO. Tyler Clippard took over on the mound with Chase Headley up and the Nats' right-hander issued a base-loading walk to bring Padres' catcher Nick Hundley to the plate with three runners on in a 1-0 game. Hundley just missed a 2-1 change, pulling it into the third base side stands and Clippard came back with a 94 mph 2-2 fastball to get San Diego's backstop swinging and leave'em loaded. 1-0 Nats after seven.

• Not Kotsay Again: After Padres' right-hander Andrew Cashner threw a quick 1-2-3 top of the eighth, Tyler Clippard came back out to the mound and gave up a one-out walk to Orlando Hudson and a perfect bunt single by Cameron Maybin to put two on for pinch hitter Mark Kotsay, who battled Clippard in an epic 12-pitch at bat before popping out with the tying run at third in a 2-1 game in the series-opener Tuesday night. Kotsay came through with a one-out double to right-center this time though, and drove in two runs to put the Padres up 2-1 after eight innings in Petco Park. Danny Espinosa flew to left on the first pitch from Padres' closer Huston Street in the top of the ninth. Chad Tracy K'd chasing a 1-2 slider into the dirt and Adam LaRoche... singled to right with two down, lining a 2-2 pitch out to Will Venable to keep hope alive for the Nats. Jayson Werth came up with one on, two out and... grounded into a force at second. Padres win, 2-1 final. San Diego salvages the final game of the three-game series.

• Miss The Game? The DC Faithful Were Watching...

• Tonight's Top 5 Commenters:

  1. dc Roach - 87
  2. cat daddy3000 - 55
  3. souldrummer - 53
  4. Doghouse - 40
  5. MissB - 32

• Doghouse's Post Game WPA Graph: "COMING SOON!!":

Nationals now 14-5.