Speed of Revere helps bring end to Phillies' skid

Speed of Revere helps bring end to Phillies' skid

WASHINGTON -- Ben Revere scored the go-ahead run on a fielder's choice by Grady Sizemore as the Phillies defeated the Nationals, 5-3, at Nationals Park on Saturday afternoon.

The score was tied at 3 when the Phillies went ahead in the seventh inning. With Revere on third, one out and left-hander Matt Thornton on the mound, Sizemore hit into a fielder's choice, and Revere scored ahead of the throw from first baseman Ryan Zimmerman.

After having one of his worst outings on Monday against the Red Sox, Jordan Zimmermann was solid against the Phillies, pitching 6 1/3 innings and allowing four runs -- two earned because of an error by shortstop Ian Desmond in the third -- on four hits. Zimmermann also struck out four batters. Aaron Harang picked up the win for the Phillies with six innings of three-run ball.

[Zimmermann] wasn't as sharp as he normally is," Nats manager Matt Williams said. "He got through it."

Speed scores: Revere entered the game in the seventh inning as a pinch-runner for Ryan Howard, who drew a leadoff walk off Zimmermann. Revere then utilized his speed to give the Phillies the lead, stealing second base and moving to third on a flyout by Cameron Rupp, just beating Bryce Harper's strong throw from right field.

Sizemore followed with a rocket to first base against the drawn-in Nationals infield, but Revere's speed was too much, as he easily beat the throw from Zimmerman. More >

"That was big, no question," Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said. "He got three bags on his speed. That was huge. That was a big part of the game."

Revere swipes second

Dr. Strangeglove: Desmond made his eighth error of the season and it proved costly. With one out in the third, Harang hit what looked like a routine ground ball to Desmond, who bobbled it for the error. Harang was initially ruled safe at first, but the call was overturned after replay. Odubel Herrera then doubled to put runners on second and third, and Freddy Galvis singled to right field to bring Harang home.

Chase Utley was the next hitter, and it looked like he hit a perfect double-play ball to Dan Uggla at second base. Uggla threw to Desmond for the out at second, but Desmond bobbled the ball, which allowed Herrera to score.
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"Brutal," Desmond said. "But I've done it before and I'm going to work my way out of it. … If this is the biggest problem in my life, I guess I'm doing all right. At the end of the year, I will look back at this and know that I made my way through it."

Herrera scores on grounder

Bryce hits in the clutch: Harper tied the game at 3 in the fifth inning with a monster home run that went over the center-field wall for his fourth home run of the season. Harper has scored eight runs in his last five games.

"I saw a good pitch I could hit," Harper said. "I did what I did with it. It goes back to being patient, not do too much. I just stayed within myself and I did what I needed to do." More >

Harper's solo moonshot

Herrera adds insurance: Herrera capped off a big game with a ninth-inning RBI single up the middle to extend Philadelphia's lead to 5-3 and give the rookie three hits on the day. After grounding out to short to open the game, Herrera followed with a third-inning double, a fifth-inning walk and stolen base, and singles in the seventh and ninth to raise his average to .308.

"I'm just trying to get on base to start a rally and let the other guys behind me take a good approach and bring me home," Herrera said through a translator. More >

Herrera's RBI single

Utley goes all out: With the Nationals threatening to tie the game in the seventh inning, Utley made a fantastic play to preserve the Phillies' lead, showing off his range at second as he went far to his right and dove to snag a ball hit by Zimmerman that seemed ticketed for center field. Utley popped up and threw Zimmerman out to end the threat and was greeted by teammates as he came off the field.

"Utley's diving stop in the seventh that preserved the lead, that was huge at the time," Sandberg said. "There was some good defense on both sides out there."

Utley's diving stop

Zimmermann pitched 6 1/3 innings, allowed four runs (two earned) on four hits, struck out three batters and walked four, which is unusually high for the right-hander. The last time Zimmermann walked four in a game prior to Saturday was Aug. 2, 2013, against the Brewers. Two of the four walks he allowed against the Phillies scored. More >

In the third inning, Harang hit what looked like a routine ground ball to Desmond, who bobbled the ball before throwing to first to get the out on a close play. But the Phillies thought Harang beat the throw to first, so they challenged the call and it was overturned. It was Desmond's eighth error in 12 games.

Close play at first reviewed

Home-plate umpire Brian Knight had to leave the game in the ninth after he was hit in the head by a pitch thrown by Blake Treinen. The ball missed catcher Jose Lobaton's glove and struck Knight, who fell to the ground. After receiving aid from Nationals assistant trainer Steve Kober, Knight left the game. Second-base umpire Larry Vanover replaced Knight behind the plate. More >

Ump leaves game in 9th

Phillies: David Buchanan is in need of a quality start after two rough outings to begin the season, in which he's allowed 11 runs and 16 hits in just 8 2/3 innings of work. Buchanan hasn't gone longer than 6 2/3 innings in any of his last 10 starts, and he allowed seven runs and 10 hits last June in his only appearance against Washington. The game is scheduled for Sunday at 1:35 p.m. ET.

Nationals: Right-hander Stephen Strasburg will attempt to do a better job than he did Tuesday night against the Red Sox. In that start, Strasburg pitched 5 1/3 innings and allowed five runs on 10 hits. He will face the Phillies for the 12th time in his career. He is 4-1 with a 2.09 ERA against Philadelphia.

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Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the Time. He can be found on Twitter @WashingNats. Elliot Smith is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.