We’ve played 4 1/2 innings at Nationals Park, and Jordan Zimmermann, after having a couple of underwhelming outings, has been sharp most of the night. He’s only allowed five hits in five innings, holding the Reds scoreless. The right-hander is pitching against Bronson Arroyo - a pitcher with whom the Nationals, for some reason, have an incredibly hard time.
But they’ve managed to take a 1-0 lead, thanks to a home run from an unlikely source.
Jesus Flores blasted a solo shot to left center in the fifth inning, hitting his first homer since May 8, 2009 - the same night he hurt his right shoulder against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Flores missed the rest of the season, and all of 2010, with shoulder injuries, and has inched his way back into the majors this year. The homer was undoubtedly his biggest moment since his return.
Arroyo lost to the Nationals last year, but had allowed a combined two runs in his last three starts against them before that.
Zimmermann has thrown 84 pitches in five innings, and avoided giving up a run at the end of the fifth when Jonny Gomes made an impressive running catch, crashing into the left field wall to take away an extra-base hit from Joey Votto.