Strasburg has 8 shutout innings; Zim the big hit; Nats win another to go above .500

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Another pitching gem in this one, and tonight’s star was Stephen Strasburg who went 8.0 full innings of shutout baseball. The bullpen bent and gave up a run in this Nationals 4-to-1 win. The Nationals also move above .500 with this win and have something to build on. When Nats’ manager Dave Martinez moved Ryan Zimmerman back to the 5th spot in the line-up, he cashed-in with immediate dividends as Zim cracked a 2-run triple in the first inning. With this win, the Nationals have already clinched this series against the Braves.

The Nationals and Braves have a quick turn-around with an early afternoon finale tomorrow. For another game, the bullpen was barely used as Sammy Solis and Ryan Madson shared the 9th inning, and it was Madson getting the save. The accolades keep coming about the Nats young catcher.

“The pitch calling has been great,” Madson said about Pedro Severino. “Haven’t skipped a beat back there with him.”

In this game, Davey Martinez seemed to make all of the right calls in this one including his meeting on the mound with Strasburg in the 8th inning in which he allowed Strasburg to finish the inning, and Stras rewarded his manager by putting up a zero. Over his last dozen starts, Stephen has a 0.88 ERA dating back to last year.

Dave Martinez in the post-game media session gave the injury updates on Adam Eaton and Victor Robles.

“We want to be very very cautious with Eaton,” Martinez said as Eaton got an MRI on his ankle with a preliminary diagnosis of a bone contusion from a slide over the weekend.

With Victor Robles, he rolled over his left arm on a dive in a Triple-A game and received an MRI with a diagnosis of a hyper-extension of the left elbow, but Martinez said they have to wait for the swelling to go down to get the final diagnosis.

The Nationals finish up this series tomorrow at 1:05pm and the projected starters are A.J. Cole for the Nationals and Brandon McCarthey for the Braves.

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