Before today's game, Mike Carp was scratched from the starting lineup with a swollen pinkie toe, the result, reports out of Lake Buena Vista, Florida said, of a HBP in yesterday's Grapefruit League opener against the New York Mets.
Mike Carp was originally in today's lineup but was scratched after taking pitch off pinkie toe last night. Toe is swollen today.— Mark Zuckerman (@ZuckermanCSN) March 6, 2015
Clint Robinson started at first base in place of Carp in the away-game lineup that featured a mix of regulars and roster hopefuls.
In other injury news: Nats' skipper Matt Williams told reporters today that Yunel Escobar, who was scratched from the first game of the year against the Mets yesterday with what was described as "general soreness", would visit a doctor to have his back examined. Williams said Escobar had "some stiffness" in his back so he was getting it checked out though the manager previously said that with the extra work the 32-year-old infielder was doing to adjust to a new position, he was going to be sore:
"'He’s going to see our doctor today, see where he’s at,'" Williams told reporters, including Washington Post writer Chelsea Janes.
"'He’s been working hard. Extra stuff, taking all his BP and everything, so we’ll see what the doc sees today. He’s been a little bit delayed the past couple days. But we’ll get back today and evaluate and see where we’re at.'"
Zimmermann/Moore: Jordan Zimmermann issued a leadoff walk to Eric Young, Jr. in the first at bat of the Braves' half of the first, but got help from Clint Robinson at first base on a line drive off Jace Peterson's bat that started a double play. A fly to center from Freddie Freeman ended a quick frame for Zimmermann.
Zimmermann took the mound for the second time with a 2-0 lead after Tyler Moore took Braves' starter Alex Wood deep for a two-run blast in the top of the second.
Zimmermann gave up a leadoff single by Jonny Gomes, but retired the next three Braves in order to end his outing.
Jordan Zimmermann on how big a year this is for him & his team: "If it’s going to be any year it’s going to be this year & we all know that"— Jayson Stark (@jaysonst) March 6, 2015
Jeff Kobernus, Kevin Frandsen and Ian Desmond hit back-to-back-to-back singles off Jason Grilli in the third inning with Kobernus scoring the Nats' third run on Desmond's fly ball to center field.
Pedro Ciriaco cut into the Nationals' lead with a solo home run off Taylor Jordan in the bottom of the third inning, 3-1, and Freddie Freeman drove in a run with an RBI double that brought Jace Peterson around from first base after he'd singled his way on. Moore missed a diving attempt on the play. 3-3.
Craig Stammen gave up one and two-out singles in the Braves' half of the fourth to put runners on first and third and catcher Braeden Schlehuber drove in the go-ahead run, scoring Alberto Callaspo with an RBI single. 4-3.
Former Nationals' prospect Juan Jaime gave up the lead in the fifth, however, loading the bases, walking in a run and giving up a base-clearing triple by Tyler Moore (2 for 3, HR, triple today; 4 for 5, 2 2B, HR, 3B so far).
Tyler Moore blitzes a triple up the RCF gap. 4 ABs into spring training, he's hitting .750, with 2 doubles, a triple & a 2.250 slugging pct— Jayson Stark (@jaysonst) March 6, 2015
It was 7-4 Nationals after four and a half, but 8-7 Braves after the bottom of the inning with Stammen giving up a single by Jace Peterson, a two-run blast by Freddie Freeman and a two-out, two-run double by Pedro Ciriaco before he was lifted in favor of Nats' left-hander Rich Hill.
Nats' first base prospect Matt Skole doubled off Arodys Vizcaino to start the seventh and scored to tie it up at 8-8 and Cutter Dykstra walked, moved up on a sac bunt and wild pitch then scored on a sac fly by Kila Ka' aihue to put the Nationals up 9-8.
Matt Grace gave up a leadoff single, but completed a scoreless eighth with the lead in tact.
Manny Delcarmen finished the Braves off with a quick ninth. 9-8 Nationals final.