Desmond wipes the slate clean in the eighth (Nats fall in 14 innings)

Andy Pettitte leaves, and things start turning for the Nationals.

Old Man Pettitte went seven strong innings, allowing just two runs and striking out six, and he left with a 3-2 lead.

Three batters after Pettitte exited, the game was tied.

Ian Desmond’s 10th home run of the season has knotted this contest at 3-3. He took a 2-2 pitch from Cory Wade and demolished it, sending it at least 10 rows deep into the left field seats.

The 10 homers ties a career high for Desmond. He now has a mere 100 games to break his previous season high, set in 2010.

The Nats very nearly took the lead on Adam LaRoche’s two-out, pinch-hit single, as Tyler Moore sprinted around third and tried to score. Dewayne Wise’s throw home barely beat Moore there, and on an incredibly close play at the plate, Moore was called out by home plate umpire Tim Timmons.

Davey Johnson came out to argue, but to no avail. We’ve got a new ballgame as we go to the ninth.

Update: Tyler Clippard worked into and out of a jam in the top of the ninth, Boone Logan retired the Nats in order in the bottom half of the inning and we now will get some bonus baseball.

The Yankees are 2-0 in extra-inning games this season, while the Nats are 5-3 when they’ve played extras this season.

Update II: The Nationals have played two 12-inning games prior to tonight. They’ve won them both.

They’ll get their third 12-inning contest today, as 11 frames haven’t been enough to decide this one. Craig Stammen comes out for his second inning of work to face the top of the Yankees order.

Meanwhile, Bryce Harper has registered the first Golden Sombrero of his career. He has four strikeouts in an 0-for-5 afternoon.

Update III: The Yankees jumped on Brad Lidge in the 14th, taking a 5-3 lead on Mark Teixeira’s two-run double to right.

Lidge allowed three hits in the inning, breaking a stretch of seven straight hitless innings for the Nats bullpen.

It’ll be up to LaRoche, Jesus Flores and Steve Lombardozzi in the bottom of the 14th.

Update IV: The Nats lost a heartbreaker in 14 innings, falling to the Yanks 5-3.

Harper went 0-for-7 with five strikeouts, Lidge gave up two runs in the 14th, and Washington has dropped two in a row to New York after entering this series on a six-game win streak.

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