Two significant developments to report from the first five innings of tonight’s game against the Pirates:
1. Ross Detwiler looked pretty darn good for a 23-year-old with only six games of experience at Class AA. The young left-hander threw his first seven pitches of the night for strikes, including a 94-mph fastball on the inside corner. He was victimized by some horrible defense behind him (three errors, two by Cristian Guzman on routine grounders) and he served up a three-run homer to Craig Monroe that looked like a long fly ball to center until it kept carrying over the fence. Otherwise, kudos to Detwiler. Final pitching line: 5 ip, 4 h, 3 r, 2 er, 0 bb, 6 k, 1 hbp, 84 pitches, 61 strikes. I’ve got to believe he’ll get a chance to come back and start Saturday night against the Orioles.
2. Cristian Guzman drew a walk. I repeat: Cristian Guzman drew a walk. Yes, that’s his first of the season. Yes, it came in his 122nd plate appearance. Yes, it required Pirates starter Ross Ohlendorf to nearly fall off the mound as he threw ball four to actually happen. But it did happen. So congrats to Cristian, who finally has an on-base percentage higher than his batting average.
Meanwhile, it’s 5-3 Nats heading to the sixth. Can the D.C. bullpen preserve Detwiler’s first career win? Recent history suggests no, but you never know.