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Wednesday, May 9, 2007

"W", Bush elude Nats in 6-4 loss OR No "Miller time" on field or in clubhouse

Quite a day of changes for our Nats yesterday. Unfortunately, the one change everyone wanted, the number in the "W" column, didn't happen.

Things started off well. Felipe Lopez got things rolling with a leadoff home run and that allowed Jason Simontacchi, who hadn't pitched in the majors since 2003, to resume his career with a lead. He had a reasonably good outing, throwing 84 pitches in 6 innings with 54 of them strikes, allowing 6 hits, 4 earned runs 2 strikeouts and 1 walk. Simontacchi did get a brilliant pickoff at 2nd, wheeling and throwing a bullet to SS Christian Guzman who didn't have to move much to tag out Johnny Estrada. MASN's Don Sutton called that a "daylight play", explaining that the pitcher looks for daylight between the baserunner and the second baseman or shortstop, and then decides to throw. It was a neat little bit of defense, and the Nats also caught Weeks stealing with a nice throw from Brian Schneider. It is their defense which is keeping them in these games of late.

But the Brewers tied the game in the 2nd and then took the lead for good with 3 runs in the 6th. Prince Fielder, J.J. Hardy, and Johnny Estrada all homered last night, driving in all 6 of their runs.

The hot bats for the Nats? Robert Fick, who went 2 for 2 with 2 runs and a walk, Ryan Zimmerman, Felipe Lopez and Brian Schneider who each had two hits.

All the Nats damage was done against Brewers starter Dave Bush, who threw 96 pitches in 6 2/3 innings (64 strikes) and allowed 7 hits and 3 earned runs. He got the win, so just call him "W" Bush (oh, please, I just had to, it was right there!)

This game also saw the Nats debut for Winston Abreu, who had played in the minors for 12 years, and he reportedly has a 95 mph fastball, but I think they said last night on MASN that he was only hitting 92 mph. Still, he started off well in relief, but did give up a home run. I think he'll be interesting to watch.

Ryan Report: A mixed bag. Church went 0 for 2, but he was walked twice, Langerhans 0 for 1, but Zimmerman went 2 for 4. Wagner went on the 15-Day disabled list (retroactive to May 7th) due to right rotator cuff inflammation.

Not a lot of positives in this one, but the Nats did give themselves some chances. It would seem that they'd have to play a perfect game to beat the Brewers. Let's see if they can do that today with Jason Bergmann.

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