I'm happy that the Nats finally turned base-runners into runs (3 hits, 5 runs, only 5 LOB total!) tonight.
--Sanches got the win after striking out the side.
--Wily Mo Pena got his 1st homer (only into the second row, but it was a bullet!).
--Our 3 hits were all XBH's (Zimmerman and Flores got doubles too).
--3 2-out RBI!! YES!!!
--Our relievers threw strikes (for the most part at least).
--Dukes went down with a left ankle contusion...so maybe we'll see Maxwell after all? Depends on the severity, but signs aren't pointing to that yet. Just speculation if it's bad.
One more note: my favorite ball player Joe Saunders (attended West Springfield HS and Virginia Tech, just like me. Used to watch him pitch when I was little) threw 8 and 1/3 innings of 1-run ball (including 8 shutout innings to start the game) to bump his record to 8-1 and lower his ERA to 2.31. I was pushing for the Nats to trade Soriano for him and a hitting prospect from the Angels back in 2006. It's an interesting scenario: would you rather have Joe Saunders and a hitting prospect (perhaps Callaspo, Morales, Wood or Kendrick) or Jordan Zimmerman and Josh Smoker? I'd take Saunders and a hitting prospect, but I'm biased. Here's the 2006 Angels top prospects page, so you can go through and try and nitpick a scenario at the time...but at this point, I'd rather have Saunders than both Zimmermann and Smoker.