Posted July 03, 2012 on
AP on Fox
San Francisco Giants
New York Mets
All-Star shortstop Ian Desmond hit his 14th home run, and the Washington Nationals became the latest team to beat up on Tim Lincecum, pounding the struggling right-hander hard early and often Tuesday night in a 9-3 victory.
The opener of the three-game series between first-place teams was barely a contest. Jordan Zimmermann (5-6) pitched a rain-shortened six innings and again enjoyed the generous run support that had evaded him for so long, ensuring the Nationals would wake up on the Fourth of July with a 3 1/2-game cushion over the New York Mets atop the NL East.
Lincecum (3-9) allowed eight runs and nine hits in 3 1-3 innings. Seven runs were earned, making it the worst start ERA-wise in his major league career. The two-time Cy Young Award winner started to look his old self again in his previous two starts, but Tuesday's effort ballooned his ERA to 6.08.
Desmond, one of a trio of players the surging Nationals are sending to the All-Star game next week, hit a two-run shot to left field in the third. He had already topped his best power season in the majors, and now he's surpassed the 13 homers he hit with Single-A Potomac in 2007. He also has an eight-game hitting streak, including extra base hits in six of those games.
Washington scored two in the second, three in the third and three in the fourth. Every player in the starting lineup had at least one hit except catcher Jesus Flores, with even Zimmermann contributing an RBI double in the second inning.
Zimmermann was one of four players to double off Lincecum, who was removed after sandwiching walks around Bryce Harper's double to load the bases with one out in the fourth. Reliever George Kontos allowed all three inherited runners to score, putting the Giants in an 8-0 hole.
Zimmermann has become known as the hard-luck Nationals starter who never gets any help. He leads the team with 14 quality starts, but the team is only 9-7 when he pitches. The tide has turned in his last two starts, an 11-5 win over Colorado to go with Tuesday's knockout of the Giants, his first win at home since last August. He had been winless in his last eight starts at National Park, with his team giving him a combined 10 runs of support while he was in the game.
The Giants scored a pair on Zimmermann in the fifth, but it took a summer storm to send him to the showers. He was on the mound when rain started to fall in the seventh inning and was replaced by reliever Ryan Mattheus after an 85-minute delay.
Notes: The teams have an 11:05 a.m. first pitch for the Fourth of July. Someone with a sense of humor added a 6 a.m. batting practice to the schedule written on the whiteboard in the Nationals clubhouse. ... Desmond is 9 for 12 lifetime against Lincecum. ... The Nationals placed RHP Chien-Ming Wang on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right hip and reinstated RHP Henry Rodriguez. Rodriguez, who went on the DL on June 7 after slamming his right index finger in a bathroom door, came on in the ninth to retire the game's final batter.
Joseph White can be reached at http://twitter.com/JGWhiteAP
BEST OF MAXIM
The Washington Nationals have reached the point where they can hold news conferences to brag about what they've done - instead of what they hope to do.
The NL East leaders put Stephen Strasburg, Gio Gonzalez and Ian Desmond at the featured table Tuesday to discuss their selections to the All-Star game. It's the first time Washington has sent more than one player to the classic...
The Washington Nationals have placed right-handed pitcher Chien-Ming Wang on the 15-day disabled list and reinstated right-handed pitcher Henry Rodriguez.
The Nationals said Tuesday that Wang has a strained right hip. His move to the DL is retroactive to July 1. He is 2-3 with a 7.61 ERA in seven games this season and recently lost his spot in the starting rotation to Ross Detwiler...
Bryce Harper said he would vote for Chipper Jones and not himself for the final All-Star roster spot, so the retiring Brave went out of his way to compliment the Nationals star.
For the last two seasons, the Nationals’ bullpen has become synonymous with one unimportant but very remarkable thing; All Star game wins. Starting in 2010 when Matt Capps recorded the final out of the 6th inning by striking out David Ortiz, to Tyler Clippard’s one out in the bottom of the 3rd inning in 2011, Nationals’ relievers have been the winning pitcher in consecutive...
CLOWN GESTURE, BRO
(Video above via @JakeRussell)
Because nothing says "Fourth of July" like Bryce Harper in his official Under Armour "Don't Be a Clown Bro" t-shirt, getting a shaving cream pie in the face from Jayson Werth on MLB Network after the Nats beat down the Giants.
(Screencap via @recordsANDradio)
Befriend the Nats Enquirer on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter.
July 4th, 2012, and the Nationals have the best record in the National League? Happy 4th of July, indeed.
Up above, (photo via @NationalsPR) a sampling of the patriotic gear the Nats are wearing for their 11 AM game this morning against the Giants...
Befriend the Nats Enquirer on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter.
Bryce Harper debuted his new Under Armour “Don’t Be A Clown Bro” shirt during a MLB Network post-game interview this afternoon, but that wasn’t the real highlight. The original Nats bro, Jayson Werth, interrupted the interview with a shaving cream pie to Harper’s face. Yes, Bro Harper got clowned by Bro Werth and Internet bros totally lost it. Who’s rushing out to get...
Ryan Zimmerman's line drive to right-center kept going - and going and going - until it landed in the first row, highlighting another big Fourth of July for the resurgent third baseman as the NL East-leading Washington Nationals beat the San Francisco Giants 9-4 Wednesday.
Zimmerman missed another home run by inches - he had to settle for an RBI double - on a humid day when...
This is a picture of Washington Nationals rookie Bryce Harper with UFC ring girl/Playboy playmate Brittany Palmer.
Compare and contrast that to the following video by YouTube’s Mallory Moreno entitled, ‘If Bryce Harper Was My Boyfriend’, a Justin Bieber parody song about how awesome of a girlfriend she’d be filmed longways on a Flip with about five minutes notice. Sample...
Yesterday was pretty much the ideal 4th of July, other than I had to return to work today. And I didn’t have even a drop of alcohol.
One of the things that made it perfect was there was baseball on starting at 11:00 AM ET in the nation’s capital. Bryce Harper, Mike Morse, Ryan Zimmerman (all fantasy teamers of mine) were destroying Madison Bumgarner (fantasy teamer I cut prematurely...
We've hit the quarter-century mark of the podcast, and it was conveniently the All-Star edition of the podcast. None-the-less, we start the podcast talking about former (and future) All-Star Ryan Zimmerman and his recent hot streak. We also talk about the current All-Stars, and we compare the 2012 Washington Nationals to the 2010 World Series Champion San Francisco Giants as...
We talk at length about Tim Lincecum and Roy Oswalt. Then the Brandon Belt subject hits and I lose my cool with Bruce Bochy. Someone needs to shake some sense into that man’s ginormous head! Why can’t they just give Belt a shot? Did Belt make some crack directed towards Bochy that he couldn’t see the TV like in the movie, So I Married An Axe Murderer? ”Well, that’s...