For the second straight series, the Washington Nationals lost badly to a NL East rival in the first game. This weekend series with the Mets turned out much better than the opening one with the Phillies.
Brian Brunney came out of the bullpen and gave up two runs in the eighth, but Matt Capps pitched a very strong and efficient ninth – it seemed like every pitch was a strike, to get the save. The Nats had an early offensive explosion off of Mets starter (and fangirl crush of one Nats blogger) Johan Santana. With the bases loaded in the first, Josh Willingham hit what appeared to be a base clearing triple. After the third baserunner Adam Dunn ran over catcher Rod Barajas, the same Met who was robbed by Harris on Saturday, Willingham came around to score but was tagged out. However, manager Jim Riggleman promptly argued the call and after a video review, Willingham was awarded a home run as the ball hit above and to the right of the orange line on Citi Field’s needlessly complicated outfield fence.
Mike Morse has been sent to the DL with a calf strain. Roger Bernadina was called up from AAA Syracuse to take his roster spot.
Scott Olsen will replace Garrett Mock in the Nationals rotation – Nationals Journal, The Post When nobody won the fifth spot in the rotation, Garrett Mock was given the nod based on last season’s performance. After pitching only 3 1/3 innings on Friday, he got sent down with Scott Olsen coming back up. Olsen, coming off of shoulder surgery, improved as the spring went on.
The Nats head into Philadelphia for the Phillies home opener at 3-3 and in fourth place. Game time today is 3:05 p.m. with Cole Hamels pitching for the home team and Jason Marquis for the visitors. He needs to bounce back from a very poor first start.