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04/15/2005 Archived Entry: "MLB News:Nationals take Home Opener"
Washington shines in RFK debut; win their third straight
by Trent Harrison
He shall be Livan, and he shall be a good man, in tradition with the Nationals plan. I don't think Sir Elton had this pudgy right-hander in mind when writing the song, but so far Livan Hernandez has been everything Washington has come to expect. Hernandez went into the ninth inning giving up three hits and three earned runs while striking out five to give Washington their third straight win and keep them atop first in the NL East. Vinny Castilla tried to duplicate teammate Brad Wilkerson's cycle effort by going 3-3 with four RBI's, needing only a single in his last at-bat but instead got beaned on his left arm.
Arizona starter Javier Vasquez had a decent night, striking out eight while giving up eight hits, but couldn't find an answer for Castilla, putting Javier at 0-2 to start the season. Second year infielder Chad Tracy, playing first with Troy Glaus now on the team, went 1-3 with a homer and three RBI's.
Both teams get a night off before finishing the series over the weekend. Hats off again to Frank Robinson, who really seems to be getting the most out of his ballclub. Here's to hoping that Dan Snyder doesn't get his greedy hands on this franchise.