Not long ago, the Washington Nationals were the ones hoping to make another run at .500. Yesterday, it was their opponent, the Cincinnati Reds, who got back to even at The Great American Ballpark.

Cincinnati, helped by leadoff man Brandon Phillips and mediocre Nationals defense, beat Washington 6-3.

Left-hander Ross Detwiler started the game for Washington, but things got off to a bad start defensively. In the first, Brandon Phillips hit a routine ground ball that Nationals first baseman Chris Marrero mishanded for an error. Phillips later scored on a wild pitch by Detwiler.

Marrero’s major-league was yesterday, and his error came on the very first play of his major-league career.

Jayson Werth and Wilson hit home runs for the Nationals to put them ahead, but Cincinnati jumped out for good when they scored three runs in the third, again assisted by an error by Marrero.

Phillips continued his hot streak ever since he switched to batting leadoff. He collected another two hits on the day, climbing to .489 (19 fo 39) since the switch two weeks ago.

This was the fifth loss in a row for the Nationals who now stand at 62-69, and are losing ground on .500, which the team has not done since 2005.


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