For eight innings, it looked like for all the world that Ian Desmond’s solo home run in the bottom of the sixth would prove to be all the runs the Nationals would need to beat the Marlins for a second straight day. Then Brad Lidge stormed into the game like your favorite wino uncle at Christmas. We know how that ends. And for Lidge, it was a swift surrendering of the Nats 2-0 lead on a two-run bomb to Logan Morrison, who then sent the first-ever home run trot tweet: Thx Brad for the lifeless hanging fastball!#washed up.
Thankfully, Lidge slinked off before the score turned upside down, setting up the Nationals to plate the winning run in the bottom of the tenth. Aided by a Gaby Sanchez throwing error that advanced Wilson Ramos to third on what should have been a double-play, Desmond then drove in Ramos with a sacrifice fly.
Game ball(s): Desmond. He has faded since his quick start, but he came through twice today in the clutch.
Goat(s): Lidge. I don’t want to beat a broken horse, but H-Rod is clearly the better option to close games at this point and with how tight Nationals games have been, the longer Lidge is in the mix for saves, the more at risk wins in some of those games will be in.
Bryce Harper is not as far off: Stephen Strasburg, who was the phenom before there was a Bryce Harper. And he deserved better today than a no-decision, pitching six superb innings, allowing no runs and striking out six.
Current Record: 12-4