PHILADELPHIA - Because of some late-afternoon rain, batting practice was canceled for the Nationals this afternoon.
No matter. Kyle Kendrick is throwing the Nats some impressive BP during tonight’s game.
Kendrick has surrendered three home runs through his first two innings, and all three were rockets.
Bryce Harper crushed a two-run opposite-field shot just six pitches into the game, Ian Desmond led off the second with a line drive home out to left and Kurt Suzuki demolished a Kendrick offering for a two-run shot of his own.
Eight batters into the game, it was already 5-0 Nationals.
Ryan Zimmerman nearly made it 7-0 a few batters after Suzuki’s homer when he murdered a ball down the left field line and into the second deck. The ball traveled just foul, but the Nats had already done plenty of early damage.
No one is happier to see the offensive explosion than John Lannan, who has really had a rough time against the Phillies in the past.
He has a nice cushion to work with this evening.
With his homer in the first inning, Harper has reached 20 home runs on the season, giving him the second most for a teenager in major league history. He’s currently four longballs shy of Tony Conigliaro.
Harper also stole second base in the second inning, leaving him three stolen bases shy of joining Desmond in the 20-20 club.
Update: The Nats’ bats have gone silent, but Lannan did a pretty good job of making the early runs stand up.
Lannan has been pulled after 5 1/3 innings having allowed two runs on five hits. The lefty walked one, struck out three and is in line for his fourth win of the season.
He didn’t dominate, but he got the job done, minimizing the damage in the third inning when the Phillies loaded the bases and getting into the middle innings.
It’s 5-2 as we go to the seventh.