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Orioles win wild one over Nationals

The SportsXchange

BALTIMORE -- A historic night by the Washington Nationals' Ryan Zimmerman was overshadowed by Baltimore's Chris Davis, who continued to electrify Oriole Park by tearing through opposing pitching.

The Orioles overcame a career-high three home runs by Zimmerman by scoring six times in the seventh inning for a wild 9-6 victory over the Nationals before an announced crowd of 39,129 on Wednesday night.

With the Nationals holding a 6-3 lead, Steve Pearce cut the margin with a two-run homer off Nationals starter Jordan Zimmermann. Manny Machado tied the game two batters later with a double that scored Nate McLouth.

Nick Markakis then gave the Orioles their first lead, 7-6, with a single up the middle. Davis followed by hitting his second home run of the game and league-leading 19th of the season off Tyler Clippard to kake it 9-6.

"We're resilient," said Davis, who is now batting .359. "That's one of the things about us. We don't go away. Early on it looked like it was going to be one of those games where you just scratch out a few runs and we were going to be in the mix. Then Zimmerman freaks out and continues to hit home runs. That game could have easily gotten away from us. The other Zimmermann was pitching pretty well. We were able to finally get some runs on the board and kind of get to him and then it kind of took off from there."

Jordan Zimmermann, who fell to 8-3, allowed a season-high three homers and seven earned runs. He also gave up 10 hits with three strikeouts and one walk over six innings.

"I just left some ball over the middle and they're a good hitting ball club," Jordan Zimmermann. "All game, I guess, I felt I wasn't getting ahead of the guys, falling behind. I had to battle to get back into a good count and they made me pay there."

Davis went 4-for-4 with three RBIs and Markakis also homered for the Orioles.

Ryan Zimmerman became the first National League player to hit three home runs in a game at Oriole Park. Roger Bernadina also hit a home run for the Nationals.

"It's tough to have a night like that and that not be able to kind of celebrate or have fun with it because we lost," Ryan Zimmerman said. "I've been kind of swinging the bat better. Tonight, everything kind of came together in one game. Hopefully, if we can keep swinging the bat like we have the past few days, we know our pitching is good enough that we are going to win more than we lose."

Steve Johnson, who got the win, and Tommy Hunter pitched scoreless innings in the seventh and eighth, respectively. And Jim Johnson, who has blown four of his past five save chances, closed out the game with a scoreless ninth.

Baltimore starter Chris Tillman allowed six runs, including a career-high four homers, on eight hits with four strikeouts and a one walk over 4 2/3 innings.

There's just not a whole lot of panic," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "I think they have a lot of faith in each other, they really do. I don't think they feel like, and I think our pitchers feel that way too, if we can just get some zeroes up there and get the momentum headed in the other way. I think what I see, it's a young group, the youngest one in the division, but still a mature group. They don't panic."

The Nationals aggressively attacked Tillman and finally ended his night with three runs in the fifth. Denard Span provided Washington with a 4-2 lead with a double, extending his hitting streak to 10 games. Two batters later, Ryan Zimmerman hit a two-run home run to center field.

Ryan Zimmerman joined Alfonso Soriano and Adam Dunn as the only Nationals to homer three times in one game.

Tillman became the sixth Orioles starter in the past seven games to not complete six innings. His struggles began in the first inning when the Nationals opened the scoring with a two-out solo home run by Ryan Zimmerman.

The Orioles tied the game in the bottom half of the inning when Ryan Flaherty hit an RBI double in his first at-bat since being called up from the minors.

Washington then took a 3-1 lead when Roger Bernadina and Ryan Zimmerman led off the fourth with back-to-back home runs. Bernandina's shot was the 68th to land on Eutaw Street, joining Adam Dunn as the only Nationals player to accomplish that feat.

Davis pulled the Orioles to within a run in that same inning. Davis has also scored a run in eight consecutive games, three short of the franchise record set by Frank Robinson.

NOTES: To make room for Flaherty, who was called up from Triple-A Norfolk prior to the game, the Orioles optioned 2B Yamaico Navarro to the Tide. ... Despite some struggles, Orioles rookie RHP Kevin Gausman will start Sunday against the Detroit Tigers, manager Buck Showalter confirmed. ... Nationals LF Bryce Harper was not in the lineup for the third consecutive game after aggravating a knee injury he suffered while running into the right-field wall at Dodger Stadium on May 13. ... Washington 2B Danny Espinosa returned Wednesday against the Orioles after missing the previous four games with bone chips in his right wrist.
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