Dana Eveland of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Washington's Chien-Ming Wang have taken long roads to get back to the major leagues this year. Now, they're using the final weeks of the season to show they can be integral pieces to their respective clubs in 2012.
Seeking their 13th win in 16 games, the Dodgers continue a four-game set with the Nationals on Wednesday night.
After losing Monday's opener, Los Angeles was baffled early by Stephen Strasburg in his season debut following Tommy John surgery. However, the Dodgers scored all their runs off five relievers over the final four innings en route to the 7-3 win.
Rod Barajas' two-run double in the eighth snapped a 3-3 tie and Andre Ethier finished with two hits and four RBIs as the Dodgers (69-72) improved to 4-2 on an 11-game road trip and are the closest they've been to .500 since May 14.
``It took us a little bit long to do it,' said Ethier, who has driven in 18 of his 62 runs in the second half of the season.
Though Strasburg allowed just two hits in five scoreless innings, it wasn't enough to prevent Washington (65-75) from losing for the 11th time in 14 games.
The Nationals hope for better luck against Eveland (1-0, 1.13 ERA) as he tries to build off a successful return to big leagues after a solid minor league campaign.
In his first outing since June 23, 2010, the left-hander gained some revenge by limiting Pittsburgh - his former club - to one run over eight innings of Thursday's 6-4 win.
"I've done it up here before; it's not the first time that I've won a game up here, so I didn't really have any nerves or anything," Eveland told the Dodgers' official website. "I just treated it like another day on the mound. It doesn't matter where I'm at, I'm gonna go out and do my thing."
Now with his sixth team since breaking into the majors in 2005, Eveland was 12-8 with a 4.38 ERA this year with Triple-A Albuquerque.
He will face Washington for the first time since June 2, 2006, with Milwaukee. Eveland is 0-1 with a 7.94 ERA in one start and one relief appearance versus the Nationals.
Looking for his first win in four starts, Wang (2-3, 4.19) will face Los Angeles for the first time. A two-time 19-game winner with the New York Yankees, Wang went more than two years between major league starts due to shoulder surgery before coming back July 29.
The right-hander gave up four runs and seven hits, including two homers, in 5 2-3 innings of Thursday's 5-2 loss to Atlanta.
Wang has surrendered four homers while going 0-1 in his last three starts after giving up one in his first four games.
Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos went 1 for 3 Thursday, and is hitting .368 (14 for 38) with two homers and seven RBIs in a 10-game hitting streak.
Washington second baseman Danny Espinosa is 0 for 8 with seven strikeouts in the series. Espinosa leads all rookies with 144 strikeouts.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
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