The Washington Times - July 7, 2009, 12:14AM

Craig Stammen was very good against the Rockies on Monday night. To say Jason Marquis was better might be oversimplifying the issue a little bit. But Marquis didn’t allow a run, and Stammen did. That was the difference in a 1-0 Nats loss to the Rockies.

Marquis, who threw a two-hitter against the Dodgers last week, continued his All-Star caliber season with eight shutout innings against the Nats. His night was practically a demonstration for Stammen; the rookie admitted as much afterward. He got 14 ground ball outs off his sharp sinker, threw 80 pitches (61 strikes) in the first seven innings and pitched out of the only jams he faced in the seventh and eighth.

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“He’s a pitcher a lot like me, throws a lot of sinkers,” Stammen said. “He’s a guy I need to be like in the future.”

Stammen only made one mistake, hanging an 0-2 breaking ball against Clint Barmes in the first inning that led to the Rockies’ only run when Barmes scored on Todd Helton’s double. Other than that, he was like Marquis Lite, throwing a sharp sinker for groundouts and working ahead.

But the Nats couldn’t score with the bases loaded in the seventh or the eighth, so Stammen couldn’t get his second major-league win.

The second game of this series is at 8:40 Eastern tomorrow night—Jordan Zimmermann against Jason Hammel. Talk to you tomorrow.