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Nationals Blow Pirates Out Again

Sports Network | September 5, 2010


Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - Ryan Zimmerman went 2-for-5 and drove in four runs, as the Washington Nationals handled the Pittsburgh Pirates, 8-1, in the rubber match of a three-game set at PNC Park.

Adam Dunn added a solo homer and knocked in two for Washington, which has won five of its last eight.

Jason Marquis (2-7) earned the win for tossing six solid innings. The veteran right-hander allowed one run on six hits, struck out two and did not issue a walk.

"Start by start I feel I'm getting closer to being consistent," Marquis said.

Pedro Alvarez accounted for the only offense with a homer for the Pirates, who have dropped seven of nine.

Charlie Morton (1-11) lasted only 3 2/3 innings after yielding six runs -- two earned -- on eight hits with a pair of walks.

"A little more aggressive," Pirates manager John Russell said about Morton's outing. "For the most part I thought he was better, still not where we'd like to get him, but it's a step in the right direction.

Zimmerman's RBI groundout in the first put the Nationals in front.

The Pirates stranded two runners in the second and third inning, before Dunn hammered a homer to left leading off the fourth. The next two batters singled and Adam Kennedy reached on a fielding error by first basemanGarrett Jones that brought in another.

Later in the inning with the bases loaded, Ian Desmond added an infield run- scoring single and Zimmerman followed with a two-run base hit to center to make it 6-0 and end Morton's outing. Daniel McCutchen entered and retired Dunn to end the inning.

Alvarez's solo homer in the home fourth got the Pirates on the board.

Run-scoring singles by Zimmerman and Dunn in the sixth put Washington ahead 8-1.

Pittsburgh loaded the bases with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, but Neil Walker bounced into a fielder's choice to end the game.

Washington swept a three-game set from the Pirates back in June ...The Nationals recalled right-hander Collin Balester from Triple-A Syracuse prior to the game...Marquis improved to 11-6 in 26 career appearances against Pittsburgh.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.