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Philadelphia at Washington

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Philadelphia (13-14)00021000000361
Washington (17-9) «000101010014143

Nationals rally to beat Phillies in 11th

CBSSports.com wire reports
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WASHINGTON -- Year after year, the Nationals finished way behind the Phillies in the NL East standings -- and adding insult to general ineptitude, Washington's home games against Philadelphia sounded like road games, what with all the loud hecklers usually making the trip down I-95.

So now that the Nationals fancy their chances on the field, and undertook a massive effort known as "Take Back the Park" to keep Phillies fans out of the stands, the hosts ascribed a lot more meaning to the teams' first series of 2012 than the visitors.

When Friday night's opener ended with the last Nationals player on the bench, pinch-hitter Wilson Ramos, delivering an RBI single with two outs in the bottom of the 11th inning to give Washington a 4-3 comeback victory over the Phillies, plenty of spectators stuck around to cheer and enjoy the moment.

Yes, this time, a minority of the crowd streamed to the exits while wearing Phillies jerseys and hats.

"It was very refreshing," Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond said. "It was nice, obviously, to have the crowd behind us tonight. I'd give it 70-30 [percent rooting for Washington], probably. But better than 20-80 the other way."

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As part of a marketing campaign, the hosts put a makeshift banner reading "NATITUDE PARK" over where the stadium's real name is atop the scoreboard. They also made tickets available online only to season ticketholders and local fans from Washington, Maryland or Virginia.

It added up to an announced attendance of 34,377 -- more than 10,000 above Washington's average, which ranks 14th in the 16-team NL -- for a game filled with quirks. Phillies manager Charlie Manuel was ejected in the bottom of the first for arguing about a checked swing, one that his catcher tried to appeal but couldn't because there was no umpire at third base (one member of the crew, Joe West, sat out the game with an illness).

The Phillies had other complaints, too, saying a ball hit by Carlos Ruiz in the seventh that was called foul should have been ruled fair ("I saw the replays," Ruiz said), and that Shane Victorino should have been called safe instead of out on an attempted steal of third later in that inning.

The Phillies are without Ryan Howard and Chase Utley; in their places Friday were Laynce Nix (a backup for Washington last season) and Pete Orr (once cut by the Nationals). Because of injuries, the Nationals are missing their preferred No. 3 hitter and slick-fielding third baseman (Ryan Zimmerman), their cleanup hitter (Michael Morse), their fill-in cleanup hitter (Adam LaRoche), their closer (Drew Storen) and their fill-in closer (Brad Lidge).

"We've been playing a man short for, it seems like, half the year," manager Davey Johnson said.

And yet this was Washington's fifth walk-off victory of the season, the most in the majors, according to STATS LLC. The Nationals improved to 4-2 in extra innings; the Phillies fell to 0-4.

"They kind of have a bigger feeling when you're playing the Phillies. I felt they were the best team in baseball last year. To come in and beat them the first time in our house ... it was a big game for us, and I'm sure the Phillies felt the same way, because we're sitting on top," Johnson said.

Well, maybe not. Asked whether this series is a chance for the Phillies to put the Nationals in their place, Victorino said: "Nah. This is just one game in the series. Just one of 162."

Still, since moving to Washington from Montreal, the Nationals never had even finished so much as third in the NL East until last season. Now they're atop the division at 17-9, while the Phillies are 13-14 and haven't been above .500 since starting the season 1-0.

Steve Lombardozzi started the winning rally against Michael Schwimer (0-1) by singling with two outs, and 19-year-old Bryce Harper drew his third walk of the game before Jayson Werth walked to load the bases.

That brought up Ramos, who hit a 1-2 slider to bring home Lombardozzi and set off a celebration, with his teammates streaming out of the dugout to greet him at first base. Someone smeared Ramos with shaving cream.

"Early in the game, I was sitting on the bench, eating sunflower seeds and talking to my teammates," Ramos said, describing life as a catcher given a day off.

When he was told to go bat, Ramos recalled, "I just take my batting gloves and [thought], 'OK, I'm the man. Go out and hit the ball hard."'

And he did.

"I was freaking out," Lombardozzi said.

Ryan Perry (1-0), Washington's sixth pitcher, earned the win with a perfect 11th, getting the No. 3-4-5 hitters -- Placido Polanco, Hunter Pence and Victorino -- on groundouts.

The Nationals trailed 3-1, but tied it with two RBIs from Jesus Flores, one on a sacrifice fly in the sixth, the other a double in the eighth.

Much earlier, Pence and Ruiz homered off Stephen Strasburg, who had gone 66 innings without letting a ball leave the yard. Phillies starter Kyle Kendrick gave up one run in five innings -- on Chad Tracy's solo shot -- to outdo Strasburg, who allowed three runs and three hits in six innings.

Strasburg entered the game having allowed only one homer to a right-handed batter in his career.

Now he's allowed three.

Just one of the oddities on this night, when there actually were more Washington fans than Philadelphia fans at Nationals Park.

Or Natitude Park.

"That's a crazy game. We only had three umpires. That was a wild game, but a good win," said Werth, who helped the Phillies win the World Series in 2008, a year the last-place Nationals lost more than 100 games. "It's a big series for us, no doubt."

Notes

  • Strasburg's ERA rose from 1.13 to 1.66.
  • Washington LHP Gio Gonzalez faces Philadelphia RHP Vance Worley on Saturday.
 
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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Wilson Ramos is cheered by teammates after delivering a single with two outs in the bottom of the 11th. (Getty Images)
Wilson Ramos is cheered by teammates after delivering a single with two outs in the bottom of the 11th. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
Washington

S. Lombardozzi
AB 6
R 1
H 3
HR 0
RBI 0
Philadelphia

C. Ruiz
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Philadelphia Phillies
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Jimmy Rollins, SS5000030 .229
Juan Pierre, LF3110111 .324
    Chad Qualls, P0000000 .000
    Brian Schneider, C1000000 .182
Placido Polanco, 3B5010001 .261
Hunter Pence, RF5112002 .260
Shane Victorino, CF4010110 .245
Laynce Nix, 1B2000011 .325
   a- Ty Wigginton, PH-1B2000022 .301
Carlos Ruiz, C4121012 .338
    Michael Schwimer, P0000000 .000
Pete Orr, 2B2000000 .269
   b- Freddy Galvis, PH-2B2000002 .185
Kyle Kendrick, P2000000 .000
    Joe Savery, P0000000 .000
    Jose Contreras, P0000000 .000
    Antonio Bastardo, P0000000 .000
   c- John Mayberry Jr., PH-LF2000010 .218
Totals39363210  
a-struck out for Nix in the 7th
b-flied out for Orr in the 7th
c-grounded out for Bastardo in the 8th
Batting
HR - Hunter Pence (4, Strasburg), Carlos Ruiz (5, Strasburg)
RBI - Hunter Pence 2 (16), Carlos Ruiz (18)
SB - Hunter Pence (3, 2nd base off Strasburg/Flores), Shane Victorino (9, 2nd base off Rodriguez/Flores)
CS - Shane Victorino (1, 3rd base by Gorzelanny/Flores)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Rollins-Orr-Nix, Nix-Rollins
E - Jimmy Rollins (3, Throwing)
Philadelphia Phillies
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Kyle Kendrick 5711221 5.30
Joe Savery (H,1) 0.1111100 2.70
Jose Contreras (H,2) 0.2100000 11.57
Antonio Bastardo (H,4) 1000010 2.84
Chad Qualls (BS,2) 1211200 3.48
Michael Schwimer (L,0-1) 2.2311220 6.35
IBB - Ankiel by Chad Qualls, by Nady
HBP - Bernadina (by Jose Contreras)
Pitches-Strikes - Kyle Kendrick 84-52, Joe Savery 13-7, Jose Contreras 4-2, Antonio Bastardo 11-8, Chad Qualls 16-5, Michael Schwimer 57-34
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Kyle Kendrick 5-6, Antonio Bastardo 1-1, Chad Qualls 3-0
Batters Faced - Kyle Kendrick 22, Joe Savery 3, Jose Contreras 3, Antonio Bastardo 3, Chad Qualls 7, Michael Schwimer 12
Washington Nationals
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Ian Desmond, SS6010008 .264
Stephen Lombardozzi, 3B6130003 .300
Bryce Harper, LF3000320 .316
Jayson Werth, RF5000114 .261
Chad Tracy, 1B5221000 .167
    Tyler Clippard, P0000000 .000
    Ryan Perry, P0000000 .000
   a- Wilson Ramos, PH1011000 .270
Danny Espinosa, 2B3120101 .198
Rick Ankiel, CF4030111 .275
Jesus Flores, C4012002 .233
Stephen Strasburg, P2010012 .250
   b- Roger Bernadina, PH0000000 .182
    Tom Gorzelanny, P00000001.000
    Craig Stammen, P0000000 .000
   c- Xavier Nady, PH0000100 .123
    Henry Rodriguez, P0000000 .000
    Tyler Moore, 1B1000000 .200
Totals40414475  
a-singled for Perry in the 11th
b-hit by pitch for Strasburg in the 6th
c-was walked intentionally for Stammen in the 8th
Batting
2B - Rick Ankiel (5, Savery), Jesus Flores (1, Qualls), Stephen Strasburg (2, Kendrick)
HR - Chad Tracy (1, Kendrick)
SF - Jesus Flores (1)
SH - Danny Espinosa (2)
RBI - Chad Tracy (6), Wilson Ramos (8), Jesus Flores 2 (4)
2-OUT RBI - Wilson Ramos (6)
CS - Danny Espinosa (2, 2nd base by Schwimer/Schneider), Rick Ankiel (2, 2nd base by Kendrick/Ruiz)
Team LOB - 14
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Jayson Werth 1
DP - Werth-Tracy
E - Tom Gorzelanny (1, Throwing), Stephen Lombardozzi (1, Throwing), Craig Stammen (1, Misplayed grounder)
Washington Nationals
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Stephen Strasburg 6333142 1.66
Tom Gorzelanny 1200010 5.68
Craig Stammen 1100010 0.66
Henry Rodriguez 1000120 1.50
Tyler Clippard 1000020 4.50
Ryan Perry (W,1-0) 1000000 4.50
Pitches-Strikes - Stephen Strasburg 76-52, Tom Gorzelanny 17-11, Craig Stammen 17-11, Henry Rodriguez 15-7, Tyler Clippard 12-8, Ryan Perry 15-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Stephen Strasburg 6-8, Craig Stammen 2-1, Ryan Perry 3-0
Batters Faced - Stephen Strasburg 22, Tom Gorzelanny 4, Craig Stammen 5, Henry Rodriguez 4, Tyler Clippard 3, Ryan Perry 3
Game Information
Attendance - 34377
Game Time - 3:42
Temperature - 80
Umpires - Home - Rob Drake, First Base - Sam Holbrook, Second Base - UMP Nonindividual, Third Base - Andy Fletcher