Worth noting

• Ian Desmond was out of the Nationals' starting lineup on Thursday for the first time since July 11 and just the third time all season. Danny Espinosa started at shortstop and Asdrubal Cabrera remained at second base.

As for why he decided to play Espinosa at short and Cabrera at second, Williams said: "Not trying to upset the apple cart too much."

• Outfielder Nate McLouth underwent season-ending surgery on Thursday to repair a torn labrum in his right shoulder.

• After the Nats walked off for the fourth time in five games Wednesday night -- their ninth straight win -- Williams and his staff rose on Thursday morning to run for the 10th consecutive day.

"I can tell you this: Our coaching staff is dog tired right now, because there is superstition there," Williams said. "On the first game of this streak, we ran. And we've run every day since." 

Daniel Popper is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.