But Johnson tacked on the regret of the Nationals allowing the Pirates to take a 3-2 lead in the eighth, one achieved by Tyler Clippard issuing a one-out walk and then Jose Tabata ripping a single up the middle that shortstop Ian Desmond, moving toward second because Nate McLouth was stealing, never saw. The ball scooted right through Desmond’s legs and a sacrifice fly a batter later scored McLouth.
Edwin Jackon’s seven innings of two-run ball went for naught, as was LaRoche’s fifth home run of the season and Zimmerman’s first hit since April 20 in his return from the disabled list.
They dressed quietly in the visitors clubhouse, each player taking responsibility for a night gone awry and knowing tomorrow would be a new day.
“It’s a loss,” Desmond said. “I don’t put it on a scale. … It’s not like we’re happy if we lose 10-1. Regardless, a loss is a loss. I take them all the same way.”