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Denard Span slides into third base on one of his two triples tonight.
Hitting highlight: Too often, the Nationals have tried to generate offense with power. Tonight, they decided to manufacture their runs, and it worked. Span twice led off innings with triples, scoring moments later on Lombardozzi sacrifice flies to right field. The other run came when Roger Bernadina and Danny Espinosa each singled through the right-side hole and Kurt Suzuki beat out a potential double-play grounder, allowing Bernadina to score. It may not be pretty, and the chicks may not dig it, but for a struggling lineup that sometimes feels like it relies too much on the longball, this was a welcome change of pace.
Pitching highlight: While the Strasburg injury obviously took center stage, Stammen's job in emergency relief was nothing short of remarkable. Thrust into the game with little time to warm up or mentally prepare himself for the task at hand, the right-hander nonetheless took the mound and dominated the Braves' potent lineup. He faced 12 batters and retired every one of them. He struck out three, obviously didn't walk anybody and was highly efficient, needing only 49 pitches to complete four innings of relief. Stammen often goes unrecognized in the Nationals' bullpen because of his unglamorous role. But make no mistake, he is one of the most versatile (and valuable) pitchers in baseball and the Nationals certainly are thrilled to have him.
Key stat: In five career starts at Turner Field, Strasburg now has a 5.24 ERA. He's averaged only slightly more than four innings per start here.
Up next: The series continues at 7:15 p.m. Saturday night when Gio Gonzalez faces Tim Hudson on Fox.