Ian Desmond went 3-for-5 and knocked in the go- ahead run in the ninth inning, as the Washington Nationals opened the season with a 2-1 victory over the Chicago Cubs.

Jayson Werth walked with the bases loaded in the eighth to tie the game at one. The Nationals then added another run in the ninth off Carlos Marmol (0-1). With two outs, Chad Tracy recorded the first extra-base hit of the game with a double off the wall in right. Desmond followed with an RBI single to right to give the visitors a 2-1 lead.

Former Phillies closer Brad Lidge came on in the home ninth. Ian Stewart hit a one-out triple off the wall in right, but was thrown out at the plate when Jeff Baker hit a grounder to third. Marlon Byrd struck out looking to end the game, giving Lidge his first save in a Nationals uniform.