This is a guest post written by Keara Dowd. Keara is the senior Washington Nationals reporter for Aerys Sports. You can find her posts at Win for Teddy.
Place in Division: 5th
Streak: won 1
Previous Series: Diamond Backs
Scheduled Starter: John Lannan, 3-5 4.05 ERA
The Nats are coming off their weirdest game of the season, a wild affair that saw itâ€™s fair share of hit batters and ejections.Â It ended with a Michael Morse grand slam in the 11th inning for the Nats to even their series with the Diamondbacks and take a 9-4 win.
With star third baseman Ryan Zimmerman still on the DL, Jayson Werth has really stepped up at the plate.Â He had another impressive game yesterday with a sacrifice fly and a great catch by the warning track.Â Zimmerman made his first rehab start with the Hagerstown Suns yesterday and hit a double, a triple, and took a walk with an RBI in three plate appearances.
Youngsters Danny Espinosa and Wilson Ramos have helped carry the team through their more difficult times.Â Ramos hit a 3 run homer last night to put the Nats up 4-0, and Espinosa kept his cool despite being hit twice by two separate pitchers.Â He continues to be one of the Nationalsâ€™ best defensive assets.
Closer Drew Storen has had a rough time as of late.Â After going 9-for-9 in save opportunities and pitching 21 straight scoreless innings, he has struggled on the mound.Â His most recent troubles were last night when he was responsible for all three runs the Diamondbacks score in the bottom of the ninth to push the game into extra innings.
Through injuries to key players like Zimmerman and Adam LaRoche, the Nats are fighting to keep a chance in the always-tight NL East division.Â A few wins in San Francisco would go a long way to helping that in the second meeting of these teams this season.