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Bryce Harper launched his 10th homer of the season in the fifth inning.
Hitting highlight: Harper had been in a bit of a slump over his last eight games (3-for-26) and some of that may have beenattributable to his bruised left ribcage. But after getting essentially three straight days off, Harper looked refreshed and back in form tonight. He put together a solid at-bat in the bottom of the third, lofting a sacrifice fly to bring home the Nationals' first run of the game. Then in the fifth he stepped to the plate for his third at-bat against Sanchez and sat on a first-pitch curveball. Good move by the kid, because he absolutely crushed it to right-center for his 10th homer of the season.
Pitching highlight: OK, so he's human after all. Zimmermann finally gave up a run, ending his consecutive scoreless streak at 20 innings. But that third-inning mini-rally by the Tigers — a two-out double by Torii Hunter followed by an RBI single by Miguel Cabrera — was the only blemish of his evening. Zimmermann did have to work a bit harder against this tough Detroit lineup than he had in other recent outings, but he remained calm and in control throughout. He struck out Andy Dirks with two on and two out in the third, struck out Alex Avila with two on and two out in the sixth, then breezed through the seventh to end his night and earn a handshake from Davey Johnson. Zimmermann isn't just pitching extraordinarily well, he's doing it against some of the majors' best lineups. His last three starts have come against the Reds, Braves and Tigers, and during that span he's allowed one total run over 24 sterling innings. Zimmermann now leads the NL with six wins, and his 1.59 ERA ranks second only to the Mets' Matt Harvey.
Key stat: Harper's blast extended the Nationals' streak of series in which they've hit a home run to 67, dating all the way back to Sept. 2011. That's the second-longest active streak in MLB, behind only the Rangers, who have homered in 76 consecutive series.
Up next: Both teams were supposed to have Thursday off, but Tuesday's rainout canceled those plans. So Dan Haren and Doug Fister will take the mound at 4:05 p.m. for the newly scheduled finale of this two-game, interleague series.