Strasburg, Zimmerman lead Nationals past Rockies

The SportsXchange

WASHINGTON - Washington's Ryan Zimmerman is a proven All-Star who rarely shows emotion on the field.

The veteran third baseman gave a rare glimpse of celebration during Friday's 2-1 win over the Colorado Rockies. After his game-tying double in the sixth, he clapped his hands and pumped his fist as he headed back to second base after he drove in rookie Anthony Rendon, who had two hits, to make the score 1-1.

Shortstop Ian Desmond homered to lead off the seventh, and now Washington (37-36) has a rare three-game winning streak going into the third game of the series Saturday.

"We have been playing better," Zimmerman said. "That is the most important thing. Hopefully it will carry over into getting some more wins. We don't ever lose faith. We are out there trying every day."

Washington starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg (4-6), who allowed just one run in seven innings, also showed some emotion after Zimmerman made a nifty catch in foul territory on a foul pop off the bat of pinch-hitter Tyler Colvin to end the top of the seventh.

"That was awesome. That was huge," said Strasburg, who pumped his fist in the direction of Zimmerman after the catch.

It was the 12th homer of the season for Desmond, who homered for the third game in a row as he went deep against reliever and loser Manuel Corpas (0-2). He leads active National League shortstops in extra-base hits.

"It is still the same white ball come in," said Desmond, when asked if he seeing the ball better. "I am still whacking at it."

Colorado (37-38) lost its fifth game in a row. Washington's Drew Storen pitched a scoreless eighth as he fanned Michael Cuddyer to end the inning with a runner on second.

"You definitely want to come through in those situations," Cuddyer said. "We have faced some pretty good pitchers in the last five games. It happens."

The Rockies struck out 12 times with just one walk.

Closer Rafael Soriano shut the door in the ninth for his 19th save. Todd Helton singled with one out in the ninth for the Rockies, but Soriano retired the next two batters.

Colorado starter Tyler Chatwood allowed four hits and one run in six innings while Corpas allowed his first homer of the season.

The Rockies took a 1-0 lead in the third on a two-out RBI single to left by DJ LeMahieu that scored Josh Rutledge, who was hit by a pitch and went to second on a sacrifice bunt by Chatwood.

The RBI was just the sixth in 100 at-bats for LeMahieu, and it came against Strasburg, who now has an ERA of 2.40.

Chatwood, in his first career outing against Washington, has now pitched against 25 teams and in 20 different stadiums during his career. He allowed just one run in six innings.

Rockies center fielder Dexter Fowler was back in the lineup at the leadoff spot after he did not play Thursday. He fouled a ball of his right ring finger on June 13 and last played on Monday at Toronto. Fowler was hitless in his three at-bats with two strikeouts.

NOTES: The Rockies called up OF Corey Dickerson, 24, from Triple-A Colorado Springs, where he was hitting .386 with 19 doubles, 13 triples, nine homers and 38 RBIs in 277 at bats. "They told me to do what I do and I will be fine," Dickerson said before the game. "He plays the game really hard," Colorado manager Walt Weiss said. The Mississippi native had never been to the nation's capital and seven of his family members flew to Washington for his first major league game. ... Colorado's Cuddyer singled in the second inning to extend his career-best hitting streak to 19 games. He has also reached base in 38 games in a row to tie a team record. ... Strasburg entered the game with a 0-2 career record and 3.75 ERA against the Rockies. "He is supremely talented with a bright future," Weiss said. ... Desmond has 32 extra-base hits (18 doubles, 2 triples, 12 homers). Troy Tulowitzki of the Rockies has 32 as well but is on the DL with a fractured rib.
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