Harper returns, Nationals down BrewersJul 2, 2013 - 4:41 AM Washington, DC (Sports Network) - Bryce Harper homered in his return, Jordan Zimmermann went six innings to earn his 12th win and the Washington Nationals upended the Milwaukee Brewers, 10-5, in the opener of a four-game series.
Harper had missed 31 games due to left knee bursitis but showed little discomfort in belting a solo shot off Yovani Gallardo in the first inning.
Washington knocked Gallardo (6-8) out during the fourth having pelted him for eight runs on nine hits to build a healthy lead it never relinquished.
"It's frustrating. There is a lot of talent in this room. It just seems like we haven't been able to catch a break. It seems like everything just fell down at once," Gallardo said.
Jayson Werth went 2-for-5 with five RBI to highlight a 13-hit effort behind Zimmermann (12-3), who remained unbeaten in 10 starts at Nationals Park this season following a so-so outing that saw him surrender four runs on nine hits.
"We have a good ball club. They're putting up a lot of runs this year. As long as I can go deep in ball games and hold them to as little runs as possible we will be in good shape," said Zimmermann.
Rickie Weeks and Juan Francisco both homered for Milwaukee, but the club matched a season-high with its sixth straight loss.
Washington went a mediocre 15-16 while Harper was on the disabled list but were coming off consecutive series victories over the Diamondbacks and Mets, including a 13-2 thumping of New York on Sunday.
The reigning NL Rookie of the Year looked to keep the winning ways going when he smacked a fastball just over the wall in left-center in the first inning for his 13th home run of the season.
Harper's teammates got in on the act in the third, including Zimmermann, who led off with the first of four doubles in the five-run frame. After Denard Span walked, Werth hit one deep into the left-field gap to bring in a pair.
Ryan Zimmerman added an run-scoring single, and Adam LaRoche and Ian Desmond hit back-to-back RBI doubles to extend Washington's cushion.
Werth again knocked in Zimmermann and Span in the fourth, this time with a single to chase Gallardo and give the Nationals a comfortable 8-0 lead.
Milwaukee, after failing to score in the last 12 innings of their 14-inning loss to Pittsburgh on Sunday, finally broke its scoring drought in the fifth, as Norichika Aoki singled in Francisco and Sean Halton scored on Jean Segura fielder's choice grounder.
Weeks and Francisco launched back-to-back long home runs in the sixth, and the Brewers kept chipping away an inning later when Aramis Ramirez doubled into the left-field corner to knock in Carlos Gomez.
But that's as close as Milwaukee got.
Drew Storen stranded Ramirez on second, Tyler Clippard tossed a 1-2-3 eighth, and the Nationals tacked on two in the bottom half against Johnny Hellweg. Segura couldn't handle Werth's grounder with runners on the corners, allowing Roger Bernadina to score, and Zimmerman accounted for the final margin with an RBI single.
Zimmermann has already matched his win total from last season and has not lost since May 29. The right-hander has not lost at home since May 17, 2012 against the Pirates, a span of 21 starts ... Burke Badenhop and Tom Gorzelanny each tossed two scoreless innings in relief behind Gallardo ... The teams combined for 24 hits ... Segura committed two errors.
- Carlos Gomez struck out looking to end the game.
Jul 1 10:09 PM
- Ryan Zimmerman single to third scored Denard Span with two out. On the play, Bryce Harper advances to second. Runners on first and second with two outs and Adam LaRoche due up.
Brewers 5, Nationals 10 Bot 8, 2 OutsJul 1 9:59 PM
- Jean Segura fielding error scored Roger Bernadina with one out. NOTE: Credit Jayson Werth with an RBI. On the play, Denard Span advances to second. Runners on first and second with one out and Bryce Harper due up.
Brewers 5, Nationals 9 Bot 8, 1 OutJul 1 9:56 PM
- Aramis Ramirez double to left scored Carlos Gomez with two out. Runner on second with two outs and Jonathan Lucroy due up.
Brewers 5, Nationals 8 Top 7, 2 OutsJul 1 9:23 PM
- Juan Francisco two-out, solo Home Run (10) to right. Sean Halton due up.
Brewers 4, Nationals 8 Top 6, 2 OutsJul 1 8:58 PM
- Rickie Weeks two-out, solo Home Run (9) to left. Juan Francisco due up.
Brewers 3, Nationals 8 Top 6, 2 OutsJul 1 8:56 PM
- Jean Segura fielder's choice to short scored Sean Halton with two out. Norichika Aoki out at second. Runner on first with two outs and Carlos Gomez due up.
Brewers 2, Nationals 8 Top 5, 2 OutsJul 1 8:37 PM
- Norichika Aoki single to right scored Juan Francisco with one out. On the play, Sean Halton advances to third. Runners on first and third with one out and Jean Segura due up.
Brewers 1, Nationals 8 Top 5, 1 OutJul 1 8:37 PM
- Jayson Werth single to left scored Jordan Zimmermann and Denard Span with none out. Runner on first with none out and Bryce Harper due up.
Brewers 0, Nationals 8 Bot 4, 0 OutsJul 1 8:23 PM
- Ian Desmond double to right center scored Adam LaRoche with one out. Runner on second with one out and Anthony Rendon due up.
Brewers 0, Nationals 6 Bot 3, 1 OutJul 1 8:04 PM
- Adam LaRoche double to left scored Ryan Zimmerman with one out. Runner on second with one out and Ian Desmond due up.
Brewers 0, Nationals 5 Bot 3, 1 OutJul 1 8:03 PM
- Ryan Zimmerman single to left scored Jayson Werth with one out. Runner on first with one out and Adam LaRoche due up.
Brewers 0, Nationals 4 Bot 3, 1 OutJul 1 7:59 PM
- Jayson Werth double to left center scored Jordan Zimmermann and Denard Span with none out, on the play Jayson Werth advances to third on Jean Segura throwing error. Runner on third with none out and Bryce Harper due up.
Brewers 0, Nationals 3 Bot 3, 0 OutsJul 1 7:55 PM
- Bryce Harper two-out, solo Home Run (13) to left center. Ryan Zimmerman due up.
Brewers 0, Nationals 1 Bot 1, 2 OutsJul 1 7:18 PM
- MILWAUKEE: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
Jul 1 7:06 PM
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