The Nationals and Braves are in the top of the fourth, and amidst all the called strikes (noted in home plate umpire Jim Joyce's, uh, distinctive fashion), the two teams traded homers. Danny Espinosa's was a two-run shot, and Chipper Jones' came with no one on. And the Nationals have added two more in the fourth to go up 4-1 on the Braves.
Jordan Zimmermann has struck out six batters in three innings, and Lowe is right behind him with five. Joyce's strike zone hasn't hurt, but both pitchers have flashed sharp sliders, and Zimmermann's fastball is sitting in the low-to-mid 90s.
And the Nationals' offense continues to show life early; Espinosa, who has been struggling the last several weeks, did an impressive job driving a low pitch to straightaway center for his homer, and did it from the left side of the plate. He just got hit with his league-leading seventh pitch of the year, and slid hard into second base, breaking up a would-be double play on Ivan Rodriguez and allowing Adam LaRoche to score on Dan Uggla's throwing error.
So it's 4-1, and the Nationals have a chance to let Zimmermann work with a lead.