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Washington at Pittsburgh

Scoreboard
Washington (33-72) «010000310590
Pittsburgh (45-59)002000100380

Nationals 5, Pirates 3

CBSSports.com wire reports
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PITTSBURGH -- Josh Willingham is healthy and feeling good. He continued his hot streak Sunday.

Willingham had a two-run homer as part of a three-run seventh inning and the Washington Nationals rallied for a 5-3 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates.

After getting two hits, scoring two runs, and driving in three, Willingham is hitting .331 with 16 homers and 40 RBI in his past 66 games.

"I've had good stretches before, and I've had some bad stretches... this is probably one of the better ones I've had," Willingham said. "I had a good one in '06 and a good one in '07.

"I can't really explain it... I'm trying to just simplify everything, get a good pitch to hit and just hit it. I'm trying not to think about it too much. I think a lot of times you can get yourself in trouble if you're trying to think about it too much... It's just, get in there, see it and hit it."

Ryan Zimmerman had two hits and two runs, Alberto Gonzalez had two RBI and Mike MacDougal earned his seventh save in eight opportunities for the Nationals, who snapped a four-game losing streak.

Ronny Cedeno and Delwyn Young homered to provide the offense for Pittsburgh, which has lost six of eight.

Willingham's homer, to left after Zimmerman led off the inning with a single, was his first since hitting two grand slams in Milwaukee on Monday. He has scored at least a run in six of his past seven games and has 11 RBI in that time span.

"The pitch was supposed to be down and away, and it was down and in," Pirates starter Paul Maholm said. "It was a mistake, and he's a guy who's been hot. That's the guy you don't want to beat you."

Willingham, who has 17 home runs this season and 16 since May 5, also drove in Zimmerman in the eighth with a double off of Jesse Chavez.

"He's been real good just about all year," Nationals interim manager Jim Riggleman said. "He really had a couple huge hits for us today, just like he did in Milwaukee."

One out after Willingham's homer, Ronnie Belliard and Gonzalez hit consecutive ground-rule doubles to make it 4-2.

The sequence ruined what had been a strong outing for Maholm (6-6), who faced only two more than the minimum through six. He allowed three of his four runs and four of his seven hits in the seventh.

"Just how my season has gone," said Maholm, Pittsburgh's opening day starter who was 3-0 in April but has seen the Pirates lose 10 of his past 18 outings. "It's frustrating. Nobody's more frustrated than me."

Cedeno hit his first homer with Pittsburgh since being acquired via trade from the Seattle Mariners on Wednesday. He has six on the season now. It came in the third after Brandon Moss had left off with a single, giving Pittsburgh a 2-1 lead.

Young's homer, his fifth, led off the bottom of the seventh and went to right-center.

Ex-Pirate Sean Burnett (2-2) retired Ryan Doumit with two on to end the sixth and earn the win. He was booed when announced entering the game after calling the Pirates "the laughingstock of baseball" this week. Pittsburgh has gutted much of its roster via trades this season.

"I've never been booed before," Burnett said. "It kind of pumped me up. It's not that emotion you wanted, but it got my adrenaline pumping."

Nationals rookie Collin Balester yielded two runs on five hits and two walks in 5 2/3 innings, striking out three.

"It was a good outing," Balester said. "I felt like I just made a couple mistakes here and there, but other than that there was minimal damage."

Notes

Willingham originally was to make his first major league start at first base, but when OF Austin Kearns was a late scratch due to a right hand contusion, Riggleman juggled his lineup around. "I was actually looking forward to playing first, but also it's not a bad thing to go back what I'm used to," he said. ... For the first time in eight games, Washington SS Cristian Guzman did not have at least two hits and at least one RBI. He ended up with one hit, failing to become the first player in franchise history to have at least two hits and an RBI in eight consecutive games since Vladimir Guerrero did for the Expos in 1998.

 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Players of the Game
Pittsburgh

R. Cedeno
AB 3
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 2
Washington

J. Willingham
AB 3
R 2
H 2
HR 1
RBI 3
 
Washington Nationals
Nyjer Morgan, CF4000013 .308
Cristian Guzman, SS4010010 .305
Ryan Zimmerman, 3B3220101 .293
Josh Willingham, LF3223101 .305
    Jason Bergmann, P0000000 .000
    Ron Villone, P0000000 .000
    Mike MacDougal, P0000000 .000
Elijah Dukes, RF4010012 .240
Ronnie Belliard, 1B4120001 .200
Alberto Gonzalez, 2B4012011 .271
Wil Nieves, C4000013 .256
Collin Balester, P1000100 .250
    Sean Burnett, P0000000 .000
   a- Anderson Hernandez, PH1000001 .246
    Jorge Sosa, P0000000 .000
    Willie Harris, LF0000100 .230
Totals3259545  
a-flied out for Burnett in the 7th
Batting
2B - Josh Willingham (21, J. Chavez), Ronnie Belliard (3, Maholm), Alberto Gonzalez (9, Maholm)
HR - Josh Willingham (17, Maholm)
RBI - Josh Willingham 3 (42), Alberto Gonzalez 2 (20)
2-OUT RBI - Josh Willingham (15)
SB - Ronnie Belliard (1, 2nd base off Hanrahan/Doumit)
CS - Nyjer Morgan (15, 2nd base by Maholm/Doumit), Josh Willingham (2, 2nd base by Maholm/Doumit)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Gonzalez-Guzman-Belliard
Washington Nationals
Collin Balester 5.2522231 3.68
Sean Burnett (W,2-2) 0.1000000 2.42
Jorge Sosa (H,1) 1211011 9.00
Jason Bergmann (H,4) 0.2100010 5.11
Ron Villone (H,4) 0.1000000 3.98
Mike MacDougal (S,7) 1000100 4.40
Pitches-Strikes - Collin Balester 84-54, Sean Burnett 4-2, Jorge Sosa 16-10, Jason Bergmann 9-7, Ron Villone 6-3, Mike MacDougal 13-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Collin Balester 5-6, Mike MacDougal 2-1
Batters Faced - Collin Balester 21, Sean Burnett 1, Jorge Sosa 4, Jason Bergmann 3, Ron Villone 1, Mike MacDougal 4
Pittsburgh Pirates
Andrew McCutchen, CF4010011 .292
Lastings Milledge, LF4020011 .250
Garrett Jones, 1B2000211 .311
Ryan Doumit, C4000003 .229
Delwyn Young, 2B4111000 .309
Andy LaRoche, 3B3010100 .259
Brandon Moss, RF4110012 .254
Ronny Cedeno, SS3112000 .178
Paul Maholm, P2000010 .071
    Jesse Chavez, P0000000 .000
   a- Ramon Vazquez, PH1010000 .241
    Joel Hanrahan, P0000000 .000
Totals3138335  
a-singled for J. Chavez in the 8th
Batting
HR - Delwyn Young (5, Sosa), Ronny Cedeno (6, Balester)
RBI - Delwyn Young (25), Ronny Cedeno 2 (20)
CS - Andrew McCutchen (1, 2nd base by Balester/Nieves), Lastings Milledge (1, 2nd base by Balester/Nieves)
Team LOB - 4
Fielding
DP - Cedeno-G. Jones, Cedeno-G. Jones
Pittsburgh Pirates
Paul Maholm (L,6-6) 6.1744231 4.75
Jesse Chavez 1.2111110 3.71
Joel Hanrahan 1100110 6.85
HBP - Morgan (by Paul Maholm)
WP - Joel Hanrahan (7)
Pitches-Strikes - Paul Maholm 98-55, Jesse Chavez 22-12, Joel Hanrahan 24-15
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Paul Maholm 10-2, Jesse Chavez 3-1
Batters Faced - Paul Maholm 25, Jesse Chavez 7, Joel Hanrahan 5
Game Information
Attendance - 21894
Game Time - 2:45
Temperature - 77
Umpires - Home - Mark Wegner, First Base - Tim Timmons, Second Base - Rob Drake, Third Base - Adrian Johnson