Werth’s gaffe helps Cubs pull even with Nationals

The Nationals had a 4-2 lead over the Cubs going into the sixth inning, after Ryan Zimmerman hit his third homer since coming off the disabled list. But a mistake by Jayson Werth in the top of the inning helped the Cubs tie the game once again.

Werth took a step in on Starlin Castro’s fly ball to right, and couldn’t retreat in time to make a leaping catch. Castro wound up with a double as the ball got over Werth’s glove, and Aramis Ramirez belted the next pitch he saw from Tom Gorzelanny halfway up the batter’s eye in center field. We’re tied at four, and if Werth had made the catch, the Nationals would still be up by a run.

For what it’s worth, the Nationals had the bases loaded in the bottom of the fifth after the Cubs intentionally walked Ian Desmond to get to Gorzelanny. He fouled off five pitches in an impressive nine-pitch at-bat, before nearly falling over while swinging at a breaking ball. That’s one of those tough National League managerial calls; Davey Johnson could have tried to play for a big inning by pinch hitting for Gorzelanny, but his bench wasn’t exactly stocked with great options against hard-throwing Cubs right-hander Chris Carpenter, and he would have needed four innings out of his bullpen.

As it is, though, Gorzelanny gave up another homer, and the game is tied.