Washington, DC – Ian Desmond's two-run home run in the bottom of the ninth inning lifted the Washington Nationals over the Arizona Diamondbacks, 5-4, in the second test of a three-game series at Nationals Park.
Bryce Harper had three hits, an RBI and scored twice for the Nationals, who snapped a five-game slide.
"It was unbelievable, great win for the club and just a really exciting time for us and exciting to be a part of that," Harper said.
Henry Rodriguez (1-1) tossed a scoreless inning of relief to earn the win.
J.J. Putz (0-2) gave up Desmond's blast to suffer the loss as Arizona had its three-game win streak come to an end.
"He got hit pretty hard. The fastball wasn't exactly where we wanted it. It happens," Arizona catcher Miguel Montero said.
Edwin Jackson allowed four runs on eight hits and two walks in a six-inning start for the Nationals, while Joe Saunders gave up three runs -- two earned -- on seven hits and two walks in 6 1/3 innings for Arizona.
Washington entered the ninth inning trailing, 4-3, after stranding the tying run on second base in the eighth, and Harper led off the frame by smacking a ball high off the right-center field wall for a double.
Putz then looked like he would get out of the jam by fanning Wilson Ramos and pinch-hitter Rick Ankiel before getting Desmond to fall into an 0-2 hole, but Desmond hammered the next pitch over the left-center field wall for the game- deciding runs.
Washington struck first in the third inning when Ramos led off the frame with a single and came around to score two batters later on Steve Lombardozzi's double into the left-field corner.
But Arizona answered in the fourth to take the lead. Justin Upton started the rally with a leadoff home run to center field and after Jason Kubel and Montero followed with back-to-back singles, Ryan Roberts plated Kubel with a sacrifice fly to give the Diamondbacks a 2-1 advantage.
However, the Nationals regained the lead in the bottom of the frame. Danny Espinosa worked a two-out walk, stole second and came home on Harper's double high off the wall in right-center field.
Ramos stepped up next and hit a hard grounder to second that deflected off the glove of Aaron Hill. Hill recovered the ball and made a throw to home to try and catch Harper as he rounded third to score, but Harper knocked the ball out of Montero's glove with his hands while sliding across the plate to put Washington on top, 3-2.
The back-and-forth affair continued in the sixth when Upton led off with a walk, stole second and came home on Paul Goldschmidt's two-out double before Roberts' base hit to left field scored Goldschmidt for a 4-3 Arizona lead.
Arizona had a chance to extend its lead in the seventh when Hill singled and stole second, but Kubel grounded out to first to end the inning and the Diamondbacks would not move a runner past first for the remainder of the game.
Saunders has allowed just five earned runs in five starts this season...Arizona fell to 4-2 on a 10-game road trip...The Diamondbacks went 2- for-7 with runners in scoring position and left six men on base, while Washington hit 3-for-13 with runners in scoring position and stranded six.