Found April 18, 2012 on
Fox Sports Houston:
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Jayson Werth drew a bases-loaded walk and Wilson Ramos hit a sacrifice fly as the Washington Nationals rallied in the eighth inning and beat the Houston Astros 3-2 Wednesday night for their third straight win.
The Nationals improved to 10-3 -- they became the first team in the majors to reach 10 wins this season. Texas earned its 10th victory later in the evening.
Washington drew three walks in the eighth and scored twice against three Astros relievers.
Houston lost its fourth in a row.
Ryan Mattheus (2-0) gave up two hits and a run in the eighth inning but got the win. Henry Rodriguez pitched a perfect ninth for his third save.
Washington starter Jordan Zimmermann allowed one run on four hits in seven innings. He struck out three and did not walk a batter.
The Nationals trailed 2-1 when Fernando Rodriguez (0-2) gave up a walk and a single to the first two batters in the eighth. Wesley Wright relieved and walked Adam LaRoche, loading the bases.
Rhiner Cruz then came in and walked Werth, tying the game at 2. A forceout at the plate left the bases loaded for Ramos, who scored LaRoche with a sacrifice fly to center field.
Houston had taken a 2-1 lead in the top of the eighth. Jason Castro led off with a double and Washington third baseman Ryan Zimmerman held him there with a pair of highlight defensive plays -- a sliding catch in foul territory of a popped-up bunt and a diving catch on a sharp line drive -- before Jordan Schafer's RBI single that just hopped past the glove of the diving LaRoche at first.
For much of the game, it appeared the two teams were headed for a second straight 1-0 game, as the starters held both offenses in check. Zimmermann and Houston's Lucas Harrell both pitched into the seventh inning, allowing a run apiece.
It is becoming a habitual line for Zimmermann, who is still waiting for his first win despite allowing one earned run over seven innings in each of his three starts this season. In his 21 innings pitched, the Nationals have scored a total of two runs, including one in the bottom of the seventh against Houston.
Rick Ankiel doubled off the wall in left-center field with one out and advanced to third on Harrell's balk. Roger Bernadina tied the game at 1 with a two-out double that ended Harrell's night.
The Astros pushed the first run across in the fourth without getting a ball out of the infield. Schafer led off with an infield single, stole second, then advanced to third and scored on a pair of groundouts to first.
NOTES: Nationals RHP Chien-Ming Wang (left hamstring) threw 35 pitches in a simulated game in Viera, Fla. Washington manager Davey Johnson said Wang would pitch a minor league rehab assignment in five days. ... Johnson said RHP Brad Lidge had suffered from vertigo the past four days, including Tuesday when he earned his second save, but was feeling better Wednesday. ... Houston LF Travis Buck left the game in the middle of the fourth with a mild left hamstring strain after getting an RBI on Schafer's run. ... Houston RHP Bud Norris (0-0, 4.15 ERA) will face Nationals RHP Edwin Jackson (1-0, 2.57 ERA) in the final game of the four-game series Thursday.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
The Gio Gonzalez effect: Jordan Zimmermann smiling during a postgame interview on TV, even after yet another start with no run support? Who needs run support when you have Natitude?
Jordan Zimmermann on the winning attitude in the #Nats clubhouse: "It's a Natitude." (via @DanKolko, 4/18/2012)
Nationals 3, Astros 2: Run support? Who needs run support...
COOL AS A CUCUMBER
Perhaps the most riveting video so far of the 2012 Washington Nationals season? See above: Davey Johnson reacts to a fire alarm during his pregame press conference before Tuesday's Nationals-Astros game at Nationals Park (link to CSN Washington.com video here). Okay, maybe "reacts" isn't the right way to describe it.
Interestingly, Davey reacted...
Before Tuesday's Washington Nationals game against the Houston Astros, retired Redskins linebacker LaVar Arrington threw out a very weak ceremonial first pitch.
Arrington tried to ham it up a bit as he pretended to check the runner at first base and wound up his arm as if he was going to throw it really hard. However, the end result was really weak as Arrington's...
People are constantly asking Washington Nationals GM Mike Rizzo about Stephen Strasburg's innings limit this season his his recovery from Tommy John surgery. Most recently, Rizzo told Casey Stern and former Nats GM Jim Bowden on MLB Network Radio's Inside Pitch that, there will be a time where they shut down Strasburg, but "I can't put a concrete number" on...
It’s our legal obligation to report on any Rick Ankiel related stories we come across on this site.
By now you’ve seen the highlights of what he did earlier in the week. Dude has an absolute Howitzer attached to his arm. LINK HERE
But you might not be aware that he was the subject of a story recently on the NPR show ‘This American Life’. We’ve embedded the story below...
The newest sideline reporter to keep your eye on is MASN's Kristina Akra and recently, she's gotten caught in the line of fire.
After the Nationals 4-1 win against the Reds, Akra was interviewing pitcher Edwin Jackson and got caught in a Gatorade bath designated for him:
(Courtesy of Guyism)
Fourteen-time All-Star catcher Ivan Rodriguez will announce his retirement Monday at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported, citing sources.
Rodriguez, the 1999 American League MVP, reportedly made the decision after failing to get a decent playing opportunity this season.
The 40-year-old chose Texas as the location for his announcement because...
There's never been a doubt about the quality of Rick Ankiel's arm. Back when he was a pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals he showed exceptional promise until the yips took ahold of him and he lost the plate. Having since moved to the outfield (and the Washington Nationals), Ankiel has shown on numerous occasions that while he might not have been accurate at sixty feet, six...
New plan: Instead of making Rick Ankiel choose between pitcher and outfielder, we let him do both at the same time.
I’m a little sad that I wrote the The Dugout Opening Days ’12 strip about the Washington Nationals on Monday afternoon, because if I’d written it on Monday night it would’ve been about Rick Ankiel’s monster strike from center that kept the fastest Houston...
Last night after the Washington Nationals 1-0 win over the Houston Astros, Nationals managers Davey Johnson was giving his usual press conference until he was interrupted by a fire alarm.
To give Johnson credit, he didn't skip a beat during the distraction:
(Courtesy of Nats Enquirer)
The Supreme Court sides with Larry Flynt in the defamation suit Hustler Magazine v. Falwell in February. In April, Sonny Bono is elected mayor of Palm Springs, California, and Roy Orbison dies of a heart attack in December.
The year was 1998, the same year the Texas Rangers signed Ivan Rodriguez out of Puerto Rico. Old. School.
After 21 seasons in the big leagues (yep, some...
With their victory over the Houston Astros last night, the Washington Nationals became the first team in the National League to reach 10 wins on the season. That's quite an accomplishment for a club that just a few years ago was literally the laughing stock of baseball. At 10-3 they now have the best winning percentage in the N.L., and are just half a game behind the Texas...
Stephen Strasburg did his job Monday night against the Astros, notching the win and a quality start. He threw six innings and held Houston to two runs on six hits and one walk while striking out five. It was a solid outing and any pitcher across the league would take it, but this was Stephen Strasburg pitching at home against one of the league’s lesser squads. The no-hitter watch...
Future hall of fame catcher Ivan Rodriguez is set to announce his retirement, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports. The announcement will take place with the Texas Rangers on Monday, which is the team he started his illustrious career with.
Rodriguez had a down year last season posting only a .218 avg in 124 plate appearances for the Nationals.
In 21 seasons which included...