X-rays on Desmond’s hand come back negative, plus more from 4-3 loss

BALTIMORE - It appears the Nationals dodged a bullet in regard to Ian Desmond’s health.

Desmond needed to leave tonight’s game in the eighth inning shortly after taking a Darren O’Day fastball off the right hand, but Nats manager Matt Williams said after the game that X-rays on Desmond’s hand came back negative.

That’s the good news.

The bad is that the Nats dropped tonight’s ballgame to the Orioles 4-3, and had two players dealing with various bumps and bruises suffered in the loss.

In addition to Desmond, who had ice on the hand after the game, Jayson Werth fouled a ball off his left foot in a ninth-inning at-bat. Werth clearly was in some pain, and so we’ll have to check on his status tomorrow.

Gio Gonzalez got the loss tonight after allowing four runs (three earned) in 6 2/3 innings. A Desmond throwing error allowed a run to score in the third to make it 4-0, and while the Nats battled back to get within a run, they dropped the last of two games at Camden Yards between these clubs.

Here’s Williams after the game:

On Desmond: “He’s fine. X-rays are negative. Little sore. Initially, when you get hit like that, it’s a difficult to grab the ball. So he was trying to throw the ball across the infield and didn’t have a good feel for it. We got him in here, got a picture. He’s fine.”

On where the pitch got him: “It’s the meat part of the thumb. It’s the biggest part of the hand, so probably a good thing. But good news is there’s no fracture. He’ll be sore for a couple games, I’m sure.”

On Gonzalez’s outing: “He was OK. Two-out walk started it and then the misplay. I thought maybe Ian had a chance at it at first. I was watching him, I wasn’t watching the runner. That one inning got him. Other than that, he was really good.”

On the Nats’ missed opportunities and leaving nine runners on base: “That’s part of baseball. You create those opportunities and that’s all you can ask for. Keep battling. They’ve got a good club and they took advantage of a mistake. We battled back, just not enough tonight.”

On Werth’s discussion with home plate umpire C.B. Bucknor after Werth fouled the ball off his foot in the ninth: “Nothing. Just Jayson fouled that ball off his foot. It’s painful off the top of the foot. He’s got no gear on there. C.B. was encouraging him to get back in the box and get the game going. And Jayson needed a little more time, so we decided to go out.”

On the Battle of the Beltways: “Just games. Tight games. They got us late in the first one, but good games to be a part of. We wish we could’ve won two of the three, but we’ll get them again August 4 and see what we can do.”

On if Harper’s lineout to left tonight was a sign that he’s coming around: “Yeah, good sign. Staying on a baseball. The one he struck out on the at-bat before is a really tough pitch, pitcher’s pitch. But him going the other way is a very good sign.”

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