Washington at Pittsburgh

W: D. Fister (2-1) L: F. Liriano (0-5) S: R. Soriano (11)
HR: WAS - None   PIT - J. Harrison (3)

Nationals 5, Pirates 2

CBSSports.com wire reports

PITTSBURGH -- Ian Desmond came through with runners in scoring position for the Washington Nationals.

Desmond hit a pair of run-scoring singles to lead Washington to a 5-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sunday, snapping the Nationals' four-game losing streak.

Washington was 3 for 12 with runners in scoring position. That might not seem like a lot, but it felt like plenty for the Nationals and their struggling offense.

The Nationals had gone 2 for 27 with runners in scoring position during their skid.

''Base hits with runners in scoring position, that's how you win ballgames,'' Washington manager Matt Williams said.

Desmond got it done twice.

He singled in the first inning to put the Nationals ahead 2-0 then made it 5-1 with his single in the seventh, helping end the Pirates' four-game winning streak.

Denard Span and Jayson Werth also had two hits for the Nationals, who scored just seven runs during their skid.

''It's nice to get some big hits,'' Washington third baseman Anthony Rendon said. ''We haven't had many lately, but we've tried to stay on an even keel the best we could and we finally got some clutch hits today.''

Doug Fister (2-1) allowed one run and six hits in 5 1/3 innings with four strikeouts and no walks. He has given up two runs in 17 1-3 innings in his past three starts. Rafael Soriano pitched a perfect ninth for his 11th save.

''We were executing and getting ground balls,'' said Fister, the right-hander who was the starter and winner.

''We played a lot of good defense. Guys were running downs balls and turning double plays. And we got on a roll with our hitting, too. It's a day of good baseball.''

Francisco Liriano (0-5) is winless in 14 consecutive regular-season starts, dating to last Sept. 10 when he won at Texas. He gave up four runs, six hits and four walks in five innings while striking out five.

''I'm not doing my job at all,'' Liriano said. ''I'm not going deep into games and I'm not keeping the team in the ballgame.''

Neil Walker had three hits for the Pirates.

Josh Harrison hit his third home run and Ike Davis also had two hits.

The Nationals jumped on Liriano for two runs in the first inning. Span led off with a double and later scored on a wild pitch. Desmond followed with his first RBI single.

Washington doubled its lead to 4-0 in the fifth when Rendon hit a run-scoring triple and scored on another wild pitch by Liriano, who won 16 games last season.

''I thought he had sequences of all three pitches in some spots,'' Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said of Liriano. ''The consistency, drawn out over the five innings, was not there.''

Harrison led off the sixth inning with his home run, a drive into the visitors' bullpen in center field, but the Nationals got the run back in the seventh on a second run-scoring single by Desmond.

Davis singled in a run in the eighth to draw the Pirates within 5-2.

Washington is 21-1 when scoring four runs or more and 4-21 when it doesn't.


The Pirates plan to recall RHP Brandon Cumpton (0-1 4.26) from Triple-A Indianapolis on Monday to start against Mets RHP Jacob DeGrom (0-2, 2.77) at New York. Cumpton, a rookie who made two starts for Pittsburgh earlier this season, will take the rotation spot of LHP Wandy Rodriguez, who was designated for assignment Thursday. ... Washington activated 1B Adam LaRoche from the 15-day disabled list before the game and he batted cleanup. LaRoche had been out since May 10 with a strained right quadriceps. ... Nationals 2B Danny Espinosa got a day off after going 4 for 36 (.111) with 16 strikeouts in his previous 10 games. ... Washington hosts the Miami Marlins on Monday with RHP Tanner Roark (3-2, 3.42) facing RHP Nathan Eovaldi (3-2, 3.41).

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
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Players of the Game

I. Desmond
AB 5
R 0
H 2
HR 0

J. Harrison
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 1

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Washington Nationals
Denard Span, CF5220000 .264
Anthony Rendon, 3B3211210 .258
Jayson Werth, RF5120014 .277
Adam LaRoche, 1B4010112 .316
Ian Desmond, SS5022011 .241
Tyler Moore, LF3010101 .209
   Nate McLouth, LF0000000 .146
Kevin Frandsen, 2B3010014 .244
Jose Lobaton, C4000024 .227
Doug Fister, P3000001 .000
   Craig Stammen, P1000010 .250
   Aaron Barrett, P0000000 .000
   Rafael Soriano, P0000000 .000
2B - Denard Span (12, Liriano)
3B - Anthony Rendon (4, Liriano)
RBI - Anthony Rendon (26), Ian Desmond 2 (29)
2-OUT RBI - Ian Desmond (2)
SB - Denard Span (7, 2nd base off Liriano/Stewart), Ian Desmond (4, 2nd base off Mazzaro/Stewart)
CS - Anthony Rendon (1, 2nd base by Liriano/Stewart)
Team LOB - 9
DP - Desmond-Frandsen-LaRoche, Desmond-Frandsen-LaRoche-Rendon-LaRoche
E - Ian Desmond (13, Misplayed grounder)
Washington Nationals
Doug Fister (W,2-1) 5.1611041 3.42
Craig Stammen (H,1) 2211010 2.57
Aaron Barrett (H,2) 0.2100020 0.47
Rafael Soriano (S,11) 1000000 0.90
Pitches-Strikes - Doug Fister 83-57, Craig Stammen 25-14, Aaron Barrett 11-9, Rafael Soriano 12-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Doug Fister 7-5, Craig Stammen 3-1
Batters Faced - Doug Fister 22, Craig Stammen 7, Aaron Barrett 3, Rafael Soriano 3
Pittsburgh Pirates
Josh Harrison, RF4221001 .304
Neil Walker, 2B4030000 .267
Andrew McCutchen, CF4000024 .303
Ike Davis, 1B4021011 .285
Starling Marte, LF4000024 .258
Pedro Alvarez, 3B4010000 .209
Jordy Mercer, SS4000011 .201
Chris Stewart, C4010000 .261
Francisco Liriano, P1000011 .118
   a-Jose Tabata, PH1000001 .264
   Vin Mazzaro, P0000000 .000
   b-Travis Snider, PH1000000 .212
   Bryan Morris, P0000000 .000
a-grounded into a double play for Liriano in the 5th
b-lined out for Mazzaro in the 8th
HR - Josh Harrison (3, Fister)
RBI - Josh Harrison (8), Ike Davis (16)
2-OUT RBI - Ike Davis (3)
Team LOB - 6
DP - Walker-Alvarez-Davis
E - Ike Davis (3, Interference)
Pittsburgh Pirates
Francisco Liriano (L,0-5) 5644450 5.06
Vin Mazzaro 3311030 3.48
Bryan Morris 1100000 3.20
WP - Francisco Liriano 2 (5)
HBP - Frandsen (by Vin Mazzaro)
Pitches-Strikes - Francisco Liriano 98-56, Vin Mazzaro 53-33, Bryan Morris 11-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Francisco Liriano 8-2, Vin Mazzaro 2-4, Bryan Morris 1-1
Batters Faced - Francisco Liriano 25, Vin Mazzaro 13, Bryan Morris 3
Game Information
Attendance - 38047
Game Time - 3:08
Temperature - 75
Umpires - Home - Tim Timmons, First Base - Tim Welke, Second Base - Todd Tichenor, Third Base - Gabe Morales