Ian Desmond continues on a tear, going 2-3 and powering the Nats with a solo home run and an RBI single that scored Bryce Harper. He extended his hitting streak to four straight in which he has gone 7 for 17 with 2 home runs and 5 RBIs. Harper added two hits, going 2-4 and raising his batting average to .256.
Gio Gonzalez pitched 6 shutout innings, allowing just three hits while fanning 9 Phillies. Gonzalez did allow 3 free trips. He lowered his season ERA to under 2 to 1.98. Craig Stammen was on his game again tonight throwing two scoreless innings and allowing 2 hits and 1 strike out. Stammen lowered his ERA to an impressive 1.44.
A continued shaky Henry Rodriguez came on in the ninth inning and walked his first batter on four pitches. After getting a fly out, Rodriguez threw a past ball that allowed the runner to advance. He then allowed a single to Mike Fontenot and then threw another past ball that advanced the runner to second base. A rough outing for Rodriguez. Davey Johnson had seen enough. Sean Burnett came on in relief and allowed a fly out that scored the runner from third to cut the lead to 2-1. He then walked Hector Luna to load the bases. Burnett got Placido Polanco to line out to Steve Lombardozzi to kill the Phillies threat and preserve the win.
You can credit this win as well to the Nationals defense. Rick Ankiel made a diving catch in center field that held a run from scoring from third base. One play later, Adam LaRoche took a wild hop at first base and threw out the third base runner trying to score. Ryan Zimmerman also created an impressive double play with an even more impressive relay from Danny Espinosa who was taken out at second base on the throw. Some excellent defense for the Nats tonight.