Any time a batter is intentionally walked, the pitcher is indirectly insulting the on deck batter. Wednesday night, Ian Desmond responded to the insult with a go-ahead single off of reliever A.J. Ramosto lead the Nats to a 4-3 victory and clinch a series win. The Nationals moved to two games over .500 thanks to Desmond, though they didn’t make up any ground in the Wild Card race as the Cincinatti Reds were victorious.
The game started off well for the Nationals. Stephen Strasburg fired two scoreless frames to start the game, and in the bottom of the second, Steve Lombardozzi fought off a rain-soaked fastball into the left center gap for a 1-0 lead. That, however, was when the flood gates opened and the Nats and Marlins were forced to endure a nearly hour long rain delay that knocked both Strasburg and Marlins righty Henderson Alvarez out of the game. After the delay ended, Bryce Harper smashed a ball for an RBI double and Craig Stammen allowed one runs over the next three innings to keep the score at 2-1.
The sixth inning presented some struggles for righty Ryan Mattheus, who continues to pitch poorly since his reinstatement of the DL a few weeks ago. Giancarlo Stanton took a slider that didn’t really move and deposited it 430+ feet into dead center to tie the game. A couple outs later, Jeff Mathis singled to left to drive in a run and give the Marlins the game.
That was when Jayson Werth became very involved in the outcome of the game. Leading off the bottom of the sixth, Werth hammered a 96 mph fastball over the center field wall to once again tie the game. The big blast was Werth’s 20th homer and 60th RBI of the season. In the bottom of the seventh, things once again got interesting. With Denard Span on 2nd and two outs in the inning, Jayson Werth came up to bat. The Marlins made the decision to intentionally walk the Nats right fielder, setting the stage for Desmond’s big hit. Drew Storen earned the win by escaping a jam in the eighth, and Rafael Soriano pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning for his 35th save of the year. Marlins reliever Mike Dunn took the loss