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Braves vs. Nationals: Livan Hernandez Shuts Atlanta Down In 9-2 Defeat

For the second game in a row -- albeit the games were played four days apart -- the Braves were shut down by a mediocre pitcher and the starting pitcher was not good.

Livan Hernandez dominated Atlanta in what seems to be a reoccurring theme on Tuesday night. The veteran, who tossed the 50,000 pitch of his career in the third inning, worked seven innings and allowed just two runs on five hits and three walks. He struck out just one. 

Jair Jurrjens was terrible once again and gave up three home runs -- including a three-run bomb to Ryan Zimmerman -- in six innings of work. The struggling righty gave up eight hits, six runs and two walks on the night, and he only struck out three. 

Jason Heyward tied the game at 1-1 with a sacrifice fly in the second inning that was just short of a grand slam, but that was all the Braves would muster when the game was still in hand. Mike Morse, who had previously hit a monster home run in the second inning, double to left field to give Washington a 2-1 lead. Zimmerman hit his three-run homer in the fifth inning, Danny Espinosa hit his nineteenth of the year in the sixth with a solo-shot to right field, and Laynce Nix added a two-run homer of his own to give Washington a 9-1 lead.

Heyward drove in the second run of the game with an RBI-single to right field. I'm sure Fredi Gonzalez will have him on the bench Wednesday night against a left-handed pitcher.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.