The Washington shortstop just broke a 2-2 tie with a
bases-clearing, three-run double in the sixth inning as the
Nationals scored five runs in the frame.
Mired in a 1-for-15 slump entering the game, Desmond got untracked
on a night the Nationals welcomed left fielder Bryce Harper back to
the starting lineup in a 7-3 win over the Colorado Rockies. Harper
drew an intentional walk before Desmond came through with the big
hit before 33,660 fans as the Nationals earned their third
consecutive victory and fifth in eight outings.
"I was fired up. To have such a deep lineup is huge," Harper said.
"Desi came up with the big hit and fired this place up."
The Rockies lost for the ninth time in 11 games and ended June with
an 8-20 record for the month.
"I think it was a curveball," Colorado manager Walt Weiss said of
the hit by Desmond against reliever Rob Scahill. "I would rather not
face Desmond with the bases loaded. Desmond got a big hit for them."
Jordan Zimmermann (6-4) got the win to improve to 5-0 in his career
against the Rockies. In six innings, he allowed two runs on seven
hits and a walk. He struck out five.
"He is a really good pitcher. We saw him here last year," Weiss
said. "I thought we approached him pretty well. We put some pretty
good at-bats against him."
Said Zimmermann, who threw 87 pitches: "I only had two pitches:
fastball and slider. I mixed them up pretty good. I just didn't have
a very good feel in the bullpen (with the curve)."
Zimmermann was glad to see Harper back in the lineup.
"He is a big bat for us," Zimmermann said. "It is one of the best
lineups in baseball."
Third baseman Ryan Zimmerman (three hits) tied the game with an RBI
double in the sixth after Weiss lifted starter Yohan Flande in favor
"I wasn't really comfortable with the Zimmerman matchup," Weiss
said. "It didn't work out."
After Harper was intentionally walked, Desmond increased his
team-leading RBI total to 49 with his 27th extra-base hit of the
Catcher Wilson Ramos drove in a run on a fielder's choice to make it
6-2 and cap the five-run barrage in the sixth.
[to top of second column]
First baseman Adam LaRoche crushed an 0-2 pitch from Scahill for a
solo homer in the seventh to make it 7-2.
The Rockies scored two runs in the sixth to take a 2-1 lead.
Shortstop Troy Tulowitzki doubled home the first run and then scored
on third baseman Ryan Wheeler's sacrifice fly as Ramos couldn't
handle a short-hop throw from center fielder Denard Span.
Tulowitzki scored on a wild pitch in the eighth to make it 7-3
against reliever Aaron Barrett. Jerry Blevins pitched a scoreless
ninth for the Nationals.
Flande (0-1) gave up three runs on six hits in 5 1/3 innings before
giving way to Scahill.
Rockies first baseman Justin Morneau had three hits but did not
score or drive in a run.
NOTES: The Nationals activated OF Bryce Harper from the disabled
list after he missed 57 games with a left thumb sprain. LHP Xavier
Cedeno was sent back to Triple-A Syracuse. Harper, who hit an RBI
single in the fourth inning, returned on the same day as his
bobblehead night at Nationals Park. ... Colorado put RHP Jhoulys
Chacin (right shoulder inflammation) on the 15-day disabled list and
called up RHP Chad Bettis from Triple-A Colorado Springs. Bettis,
who made the Opening Day roster, is in his fourth stint with the
Rockies this season. ... The scheduled starters for Tuesday's game
are Washington RHP Stephen Strasburg (6-6, 3.70) against Colorado
LHP Christian Friedrich (0-2, 8.10). ... Colorado OF Corey
Dickerson, who was nursing a sore hamstring, was held out of the
starting lineup. He entered in a double switch and finished 1-for-2.
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