LOS ANGELES -- After a two-game winning streak followed an eight-game losing streak, the Los Angeles Dodgers hit the wall Monday night against the Washington Nationals.
Problem for Washington?
So did Bryce Harper.
The Nationals' young star exited the game after colliding face-first with the outfield fence, but Washington went on to claim its first win at Dodger Stadium in six tries with a 6-2 victory.
With no outs in the fifth inning, Los Angeles catcher A.J. Ellis smacked a long drive to right field, and Harper gave chase. The second-year slugger, who is tied second in the National League with 10 home runs, crashed into the outfield scoreboard at full speed.
He lay on the field for several minutes before appearing woozy as he rose, dusted himself and lifted his head to reveal a ring of blood around his neck, apparently caused by a chain necklace. He came out of the game and was replaced by Roger Bernadina.
Harper's injury muted the celebration of yet another fine performance by Washington starter Jordan Zimmermann.
Zimmermann (7-1) entered the game having allowed a total of one run in his previous three starts, and he maintained his mastery, throwing 7 2/3 innings of two-run ball. He gave up nine hits and didn't walk a batter while striking out five en route to his league-leading seventh win.
Zimmermann got into trouble in the eighth inning, allowing three singles and a run before being pulled, but the Dodgers (15-22) did no more damage and stranded two baserunners.
Washington (21-17) supported Zimmermann's cause by sprinkling hits throughout the lineup. Eight regulars collected hits, led by Ryan Zimmerman's double and three RBIs and Adam LaRoche's single and two RBIs. Even Bernadina added a single after coming off the bench.
The Nationals' consistency, coupled with the Dodgers' surprisingly sloppy defense, propelled Washington to a 6-0 lead.
Washington scored two runs in the top of the fifth on a throwing error by Los Angeles pitcher Javy Guerra that scored Steve Lombardozzi and on an LaRoche single that scored Harper.
The Nationals added to an early lead that chased Dodgers starter Josh Beckett after just three innings. Beckett allowed three hits and four runs (two earned) with five strikeouts before exiting after a LaRoche RBI groundout followed a Ryan Zimmerman two-run scoring double.
NOTES: The Dodgers brass maintained Monday that they were unsure where RHP Zack Greinke would be pitching Wednesday. Greinke has been on the disabled list since April 12 after a fight at the mound with San Diego OF Carlos Quentin, and he made his first rehab start Thursday for Class A Rancho Cucamonga. He is expected to either start Wednesday for Los Angeles or for Rancho Cucamonga. ... Dodgers 1B Adrian Gonzalez, who missed four of the previous nine games due to a neck strain, went 2-for-4. ... The Nationals haven't won a series against the Dodgers since 2005, and they entered the night 15-26 against Los Angeles since 2006. ... Washington's staff ERA of 3.22 ranked second in the majors entering Monday's games.