Game #5 Recap: Homers Help Nationals Hang On

A night after Dan Haren and the bullpen allowed 6 home runs to the Reds offense, the Nationals were able to pick up 5 of their own. Harper, Ramos, Werth, and Desmond would all hit home runs, while Ramos with hitting 2 of the 5. It was not the Nationals best defensive day and the bullpen had a few struggles, but the Nationals were able to hang on.

Ross Detwiler took the hill for the Nationals and would not disappoint. Detwiler would go 6 strong innings, allowing only 1 unearned run. The run came when Ian Desmond threw away a ground ball on Brandon Phillips, who would take 2nd on the error. Todd Frazier doubled shortly after to bring Phillips home. The Nationals still had the lead, though as Harper had brought home Werth who had doubled in the previous at bat with a two run shot in the 3rd.

Wilson Ramos would get the runs back, and then some later in the 6th with the Nationals second two run homer of the day. Detwiler would finish the 6th inning with a 4-1 lead over the Reds, then hand the game over to the bullpen. Detwiler’s final line would be 6 innings pitched, 6 hits, 1 run (unearned), 1 walk, a strikeout, and 2 hit batters.

In the top of the 7th, Werth gave the Nationals another run on his 2nd home run of the year. Tyler Clippard came in to pitch the bottom of the 7th and had a strong inning, allowing nothing and picking up 2 strikeouts.

In the bottom of the 8th inning, the Reds offense would come back against the Nationals. The Reds would pick up 2 runs off of Drew Storen. Storen did not receive any help as both Desmond and Harper picked up errors to help the Reds grab a run, but Storen would leave with the lead intact. Rafael Soriano came on to close the game, but a home run to Shin Soo Choo made it a 5-4 game. Joey Votto came to the plate and smacked a triple, then scored the tying run on a wild pitch from Soriano. It was Soriano’s first blown save of the year.

Both the Nationals and the Reds had a relatively quiet 10th inning, but Ian Desmond led off the top of the 11th with a Home Run off of J.J. Hoover to give the Nationals a 6-5 lead. After a sharp line out by Espinosa, Ramos hit his 2nd home run of the game, which would become the game winning hit. Craig Stammen allowed a run after walking Votto who advanced to 2nd on defensive indifference, then allowed a double to Brandon Phillips making it a 7-6 game. After Joey Votto Scored, Stammen was able to strike out Bruce on a foul tip and pick up the win in relief.

It was a wild ride for the Nationals, but they were able to hang on and pick up the win with a solid offensive showing and a good start from Ross Detwiler. As a result, the Nationals improve to 4-1 on the season.