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(Sunday, May 25th)
Final Score: Washington 5, Pittsburgh 2
Pittsburgh, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Ian Desmond had two hits and two RBI and Doug Fister allowed just a run in 5 1/3 innings to help the Washington Nationals salvage the finale of a four-game set with the Pittsburgh Pirates, 5-2.
Jayson Werth and Denard Span also had a pair of hits for the Nats, who had lost four straight. Anthony Rendon tripled in a run, while he and Span each scored twice in the triumph.
Fister (2-1) was touched for six hits to earn his second straight win. He hasn't allowed more than two runs in three consecutive starts.
"I felt good today," Fister said. "That's what it comes down to, is executing and getting groundballs. I think we did that well today."
Craig Stammen allowed a run in two innings out of the bullpen and Rafael Soriano faced the minimum in the ninth to nail down his 11th save. Ten of Soriano's 12 pitches went for strikes.
Francisco Liriano (0-5) stayed winless on the season after getting roughed up for four runs on six hits and four walks in five innings on the hill.
Neil Walker had three hits for the Pirates, who narrowly missed their first four-game sweep since 2012. Saturday's hero Josh Harrison, who drove in the game-winning run in the seventh inning in that one, had a pair of hits -- including a solo homer -- and scored twice in the setback.
"The crazy part of this game is every night a team loses, there is a manager talking about the two of three opportunities," said Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle. "Basketball, football, there are tipping points in every sport. We had ours today."
Washington got to Liriano with two runs in the first inning. Span set the table with a double to right and Rendon walked to put a pair on. Werth struck out and Adam LaRoche grounded out, but both runners advanced on the play and Span scored on Liriano's wild pitch. Desmond followed with a single to right- center for a 2-0 margin.
Span ignited another two-run rally, this time in the fifth, by singling to right and stealing second with no outs before Rendon's triple made it 3-0. Werth then advanced Rendon to third and a second wild pitch from Liriano allowed him to score.
Harrison's solo homer to start the sixth preceded singles by Walker and Ike Davis, the last chasing Fister from the contest. Stammen ended the frame by inducing a double-play groundout off the bat of Sterling Marte.
Desmond made it 5-1 with his RBI single in the seventh.
The Pirates had one last chance in the eighth, putting a run across on Davis' RBI single to center. With runners on the corners and two outs, however, Aaron Barrett struck out Marte.
Davis had two hits, including Pittsburgh's lone one with a runner in scoring position. The Pirates finished 1-for-5 with RISP, leaving six on ... Span's leadoff double was the only two-bagger of the game for either team.
05/25 20:16:52 ET
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