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Can't spell Desmond without E: makes 8th error in 12 games as Nationals lose to Phillies 5-3

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WASHINGTON — Ian Desmond would have understood if the Nationals Park crowd booed him. He was coming to bat after his latest fielding misadventure.

Instead, he heard cheers.

"Something happened today that I'll never forget. After that inning, I came up. And I would have totally understood if the fans booed me. But I think it was one of the loudest cheers I've had," Desmond said. "That was really cool."

Still, Desmond's eighth error in 12 games proved costly Saturday as the Philadephia Phillies stopped a six-game losing streak with a 5-3 victory over Washington.

Odubel Herrera had three hits and scored twice to back Aaron Harang, and Ben Revere flashed his speed for the Phillies.

With the score 3-all in the seventh, Ryan Howard walked, Revere pinch ran and went home without the benefit of a hit.

"He got three bags on his speed," manager Ryne Sandberg said. "That was huge."

With Cameron Rupp facing Washington starter Jordan Zimmermann, Revere stole second.

"Everybody in the whole stadium knows I'm about to steal, so that's big," Revere said.

He sped to third when Rupp flied to Bryce Harper in right. With the infield in, pinch-hitter Grady Sizemore hit a hard bouncer to first and Revere, running on contact, beat Ryan Zimmerman's throw to the plate.

"Grady smoked that thing," Revere said. "I thought he lined out for a second and I kind of hesitated."

Freddy Galvis had two RBI singles for Philadelphia, which had scored 13 runs over its prior six games.

Harang (2-1) gave up three runs and seven hits in six innings, and Jonathan Papelbon pitched the ninth for his third save.

Harper hit a long home run for Washington, which had won three straight. Ian Desmond added three hits, but the shortstop continued to struggle in the field, committing an error and later dropping the ball while attempting to complete a double play in the same inning.

Zimmermann (1-2) allowed four runs — two earned — four hits and four walks in 6 1-3 innings.

PHOTO: Washington Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond makes a fielding error on a ball hit by Philadelphia Phillies' Aaron Harang, who was safe at first after the play was reviewed, during the third inning of a baseball game at Nationals Park, Saturday, April 18, 2015, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Washington Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond makes a fielding error on a ball hit by Philadelphia Phillies' Aaron Harang, who was safe at first after the play was reviewed, during the third inning of a baseball game at Nationals Park, Saturday, April 18, 2015, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

"I was just trying to be too fine and then I ended up missing and falling behind," he said. "Then I would really make a mistake, and miss badly."

Harper tied it at 3 with his fourth homer, a fifth-inning drive that hit the top of the green wall well beyond the center-field fence.

"I saw a good pitch to hit and I did what I do," Harper said. "It goes back to being patient and not trying to do too much."

Desmond's defensive troubles enabled the Phillies to take a 2-1 lead in the third. He bobbled Harang's one-out bouncer, and when Harang was ruled safe after a video review, Desmond had another error.

"I've been here before and I can work my way out of it. I think I can work even harder than I'm working," Desmond said.

After Herrera's double, Galvis' single scored Harang and sent Herrera to third. Chase Utley then hit a potential inning-ending, double-play grounder to Dan Uggla, but Desmond, attempting to transfer the ball to his throwing hand for the relay, dropped it. Galvis was out at second, but Utley was safe at first and Herrera scored.

"Brutal," Desmond said of the drop.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Phillies: OF Domonic Brown (left Achilles tendinitis) continued his rehab, playing for Triple-A Lehigh Valley against Buffalo.

Nationals: SS Yunel Escobar, who left Friday night's game with a strained groin, was scheduled to have an MRI. ... OF Denard Span (core muscle surgery) worked out at Nationals Park and could be activated on Sunday.

SCARY MOMENT

Plate umpire Brian Knight left the game in the ninth after taking a fastball from Washington's Blake Treinen off his facemask. The game was delayed for 12 minutes while second base umpire Larry Vanover changed and took over plate duties.

ROB ME, ROB YOU

With runners on first and second and two outs in the seventh inning, Zimmerman made a diving stop to take a hit away from Utley. In the bottom of the seventh, with Washington runners on first and second, Utley returned the favor, taking a hit away from Zimmerman.

UP NEXT

Phillies: David Buchanan (0-2, 11.42) makes his second career start against the Nationals. He allowed seven runs and 10 hits in six innings in a loss at Philadelphia last June.

Nationals: Stephen Strasburg (0-1, 6.75) tries to get his 2015 season on track. Last time out, he allowed five earned runs and 10 hits over 5 1-3 innings of a no-decision at Boston.

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