LAKELAND, Fla. - We've played 5 1/2 innings at Joker Marchant Stadium, and this is shaping up to be one of the Nationals' best - and most eventful - efforts of the spring.
Jayson Werth took the first pitch he saw from Rick Porcello in the fifth inning deep to left, hitting his first homer of the spring in his 39th at-bat. Two batters later, Michael Morse added another homer - his seventh of the spring - to put the Nationals up 5-0.
Jordan Zimmermann's night is done after five sharp innings; he gave up five hits in five innings, didn't allow a run and struck out six. He touched 96 mph again in the fifth inning - as good a sign as any we've seen that his arm strength is all the way back - and continued to flash a good slider. He's scheduled to pitch once more this spring next Tuesday against the Braves, but he looks ready to go tonight.
And at the end of the sixth inning, the Tigers tried to catch Jerry Hairston Jr. in a rundown at second before transferring their attention to Ian Desmond, who tried to head from third to home on the play. Desmond was thrown out on a 2-6-3-2-1-5-4 rundown that included him stepping out of the baseline at least once and running into a Tigers player before he was tagged.
Yep, plenty to see here tonight.