More fantastic pitching, more low-scoring ballgames (Nats lose in 11, 2-1)

With the exception of his complete-game, two-hitter back on April 14 against the Reds, Edwin Jackson delivered his finest performance as a National tonight.

Jackson was sensational through eight innings, allowing just one run on five hits with one walk and eight strikeouts.

After allowing a run in the first inning, Jackson set down 19 of the 23 Orioles he faced and needed just 95 pitches to get through his eight frames.

Luckily, he won’t get stuck with a tough-luck loss, thanks to Ian Desmond’s solo home run in the sixth.

It was Desmond’s sixth homer of the season, and he now has 16 RBIs on the year.

Still, Jackson deserved to win with an effort like he gave tonight, but he won’t get his second “W” of the year. Jake Arrieta delivered a strong outing for the O’s, as well, going seven innings with just one run allowed and nine Ks.

We’re knotted at 1-1 as we go to the ninth.

Update: The Nats had Ryan Zimmerman, Adam LaRoche and Bryce Harper up in the bottom of the ninth in a tie game with a chance to win it.

They went 1-2-3, and we’re going to extras.

The crowd rose to its feet when Harper came up with two outs, begging for the 19-year-old to deliver some theatrics and walk the Nats off with a win. But Harper popped up to third to end the inning.

It’ll be Sean Burnett on the mound for the Nats in the top of the 10th.

Update II: Burnett got through a scoreless 10th, but Ryan Mattheus couldn’t do the same in the 11th.

Mattheus surrendered a solo home run to Nick Markakis with one out in the 11th, giving the O’s a 2-1 win. Markakis hit the ball so hard it bounced off the cement that makes up the second deck in right and then ricocheted back onto the field.

The Nats had a chance in the bottom of the 11th, putting runners on first and second with two down, but LaRoche grounded out to the pitcher to end it.

With the loss, Washington falls 1 1/2 games behind the Braves for first place in the National League East.

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