Each guy has homered tonight, with Harper’s two-run shot putting the Nats on the board, Werth’s three-run bomb pushing that lead to 5-0 and Desmond’s moonshot making it a 9-0 Nats advantage.
Desmond’s homer came in the seventh, and it was a sky-high blast that seemed like it was in the air forever. When it finally came down a handful of rows into the left field bleachers, Desmond had his 20th homer of the season, just one behind Werth for the team lead.
Ryan Zimmerman, Harper, Werth and Desmond are now a combined 10-for-14 with three homers, eight RBIs and two walks tonight.
Talk about some major pop in the middle of the order.
Zimmerman hasn’t homered, but he has gone 3-for-3 with a walk. Pretty impressive night, but he’ll get overlooked with all that the other three guys have done in the power department tonight.
Gio Gonzalez, meanwhile, is now done after seven scoreless innings of work, with Tanner Roark on to work the eighth.
Gonzalez allowed just three hits and two walks tonight, throwing 108 pitches over his seven frames. After a shaky start, Gonzalez retired 16 of the last 17 Marlins hitters he faced, including 11 straight to end his outing.
He struck out eight on the evening.
Roark coming in tonight in relief of Gonzalez almost certainly means that we’ll see Ross Ohlendorf start on Sunday.
Manager Davey Johnson had said that if Roark wasn’t needed tonight, he might call upon the rookie to get the start Sunday, but with a worn-out bullpen and Gonzalez coming out after seven innings, Roark will get the ball for the final two innings tonight to close this one out.
Update: That’ll do it. Roark delivered two dominant innings, needing only 13 pitches (12 of which were strikes) and allowing just an infield single, and the Nationals wrapped up a 9-0 win over the Marlins.
This closes out a three-game sweep of Miami and gets the Nats back to three games over .500 at 68-65.
They’ve now won 14 of their last 19 and gain a half game over idle Cincinnati. The deficit in the wild card chase is now 6 1/2 games.