Jordan Zimmermann struggles as Washington Nationals fall to Brewers, 8-4


Jordan Zimmermann‘s return to Milwaukee didn’t go as he would’ve liked, as the right-hander struggled mightily in one of the worst starts of his career. Hampered by Zimmermann’s struggles and the offense’s continued slump, the Washington Nationals fell to the Brewers, 8-4, in the second game of their four-game set against Milwaukee.

Things began to unravel early on for Zimmermann, who entered the game in search of his sixth win of the season. After a walk and a potential inning-ending double play ball that Ian Desmond bobbled put two runners on for the Brewers in the bottom of the first, Aramis Ramirez battled through a nine-pitch at-bat and scorched a two-run double to left field, giving the Brewers a 2-0 lead.

For a while, it looked like the Nationals would get back into the game quickly as the team answered back in the top of the second.

Bryce Harper led off the inning against Milwaukee starter Mike Fiers, and the Nationals’ slugger unleashed on a 1-2 fastball and hit it over the wall in right-center field. It was Harper’s 21st home run of the season and cut the Brewers’ lead to 2-1.

But the Brewers answered right back an inning later, as Ramirez once again hit an RBI double to left field, scoring Ryan Braun and giving Milwaukee a 3-1 lead.

The Nationals made it a one-run game again in the fourth inning, when Harper once again showed that he’s one of the few bright spots in a struggling lineup. After Anthony Rendon walked and advanced to second on a ground out by Yunel Escobar, Harper lined a 1-0 pitch from Fiers into left field to score Rendon and make it a 3-2 game.

Unfortunately for the Nationals, the Brewers’ offense wasn’t finished, and neither was Ramirez. After Jonathan Lucroy made it a 5-2 game with a two-run single off of Zimmermann, manager Matt Williams turned to reliever Taylor Hill to try to stop the bleeding. But Ramirez wasn’t going to let that happen, as the Brewers’ third baseman hit another two-run double to give the Brewers a 7-2 lead. Milwaukee added another run on an RBI single by Adam Lind in the sixth.

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It was a rough start for Zimmermann, who gave up six runs on nine hits over 3 1/3 innings.

While it was a forgettable night for Zimmermann, it was a memorable night for Ramirez, who went 3-for-4 with five RBIs for the Brewers.

The Nationals picked up two more runs on a home run by Tyler Moore in the seventh and an RBI double by Wilson Ramos in the eighth, but that was all the offense the team would muster and the Brewers held on to win, 8-4.

Next Game: The Nationals and Brewers will be back at it tomorrow afternoon, as Joe Ross (0-1, 5.04) takes on Jimmy Nelson (3-6, 4.05 ERA) and the Brewers in his second big league start.

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