Jordan Zimmermann finishes strong; Nats register 5-2 win

Jordan Zimmermann allowed four hits in the first two innings of today’s game, which probably shouldn’t be surprising; he entered today with a 5.46 career ERA in first innings. But the way the 24-year-old battled back was an impressive sign of his growth as a pitcher.

Zimmermann threw 107 pitches, the most he’s thrown since returning from Tommy John surgery, in six innings, and only gave up two hits after the second inning. He walked two batters, one intentionally, and threw a wild pitch, but he had a good slider today and got a pair of swinging strikeouts - an encouraging sign since he’s had few of those early this year.

The Nationals are about to pinch hit for him, which means this will be his final line today: 6 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 1 WP. Not too bad.

Washington leads San Francisco 3-2 after six innings. It’ll be Tyler Clippard for the Nationals in the seventh, facing a pinch hitter for Giants pitcher Matt Cain and the top of San Francisco’s order.

I’ll be on Nats Xtra after this one’s over, recapping the game with Johnny Holliday. Stay tuned on MASN.

Update: The timely hitting continued for the Nationals in the eighth inning, as Ivan Rodriguez smacked an RBI single to score Ian Desmond and Danny Espinosa, giving the Nats some extra breathing room to close out the win. Pudge was called out trying to advance to second base on the play, but the Nationals move to 13-14 on the year.