Laynce Nix drove in exciting minor league outfielder Eury Perez with a double in the top of the tenth inning, leading the Washington Nationals to a 4-3 victory over their N.L. East foe New York Mets, before a nice crowd at Digital Domain Stadium in Port St. Lucie, FL.
Perez singled and immediately stole second base to get into scoring position for the veteran Nix, trying to make the Nats as a non-roster invitee. Nix laced a double to right center, scoring the fleet Perez easily.
Eury Perez stealing second (Photo by Cheryl Nichols/Nats News Network)
Perez, a 20-year old Dominican, hit .299/.345/.381 stole 64 bases for Class-A Hagerstown last season and is one of the minor league players Nats fans should keep an eye on this year as he works his way through the minor league system.
Eury Perez after scoring the winning run (Photo by Cheryl Nichols/Nats News Network)
The other noteworthy development is the continued excellence of Jordan Zimmermann. In his second start against outside competition, Zimmermann threw three efficient innings, allowing one hit and two walks, with four strikeouts.
Jordan Zimmermann (Photo by Cheryl Nichols/Nats News Network)
He allowed a couple of hard hit outs in the first inning, driving center fielder Rick Ankiel to the track in both left and right center. But after that, he mowed down the Mets. Both walks came in his last inning of work, when it appeared home plate umpire D. J. Reyburn disagreed with what Zimmermann thought were strikes.
NATS NOTES: Nyjer Morgan, who had struggled mightily at the plate this spring, went 2-for-3 with two walks and two stolen bases, but also was caught stealing twice, including on an attempted suicide squeeze where INF Alberto Gonzalez could not get the bunt down. With the two hits, Morgan raises his spring training average to .158.
Michael Morse hit his team-leading third home run of spring training, going 2-for-4 on the day.
Michael Morse and Jerry Hairston Jr. each hit solo homers
(Photo by Cheryl Nichols/Nats News Network)
Jerry Hairston and Brian Bixler also hit solo home runs for the Nats.
The team had 12 hits and four walks, but went 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position and left 10 men on base.
Ian Desmond and Jeff Frazier both committed errors. Desmond tried to play a slow bouncer on the big hop but couldn't come up with it. It's debatable whether he would have had the runner at first regardless if he'd fielded the ball cleanly.
Adam Carr got the win, throwing the last two innings of the game. He gave up one hit, and did not walk or strike out a batter.
Adam Carr pitched 9th and 10th innings
Photo by Cheryl Nichols/Nats News Network)
Derek Norris missed a tag at the plate (Cheryl Nichols/Nats News Network)