Nationals, Phillies tied 2-2 early (Phillies now lead 7-3)

Rookie second baseman Danny Espinosa was stout on defense Friday night, but his game Saturday didn’t start out that way. Philadelphia shortstop Jimmy Rollins led off the game with a grounder toward the middle that Espinosa was unable to handle.

It looked like left-hander John Lannan was going to get out of the inning unscathed, but Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard hit an opposite field home run to put the Phillies up 2-0.

In the top of the second inning, Michael Morse, back in the lineup after a day off, greeted Roy Oswalt with a leadoff double. Laynce Nix knocked in the first baseman to cut the Phillies lead to 2-1. Ian Desmond singled home Nix to tie the score at two apiece. The Nationals and Phillies are heading to the third inning.

Update: The Phillies retook the lead on a Howard single to right field in the bottom of the third inning. His single followed an error by Desmond to help Shane Victorino reach first base and a hit by Chase Utley.

Raul Ibañez drove in Utley on a bases-loaded ground out to push the Phillies lead to 4-2 before Lannan was able to retire Wilson Valdez on a flip from his glove to Wilson Ramos and force out Howard at the plate.

A grounder to Desmond stopped the bleeding, but not before the Phillies scored three more runs. Collin Balester is warming up in the bullpen.