By Rich DubroffCSNwashington.com
Before the game, the mascots tussled. The Oriole Bird stole the cap from Screechs head. The fans cheered.Unlike last months series at Nationals Park, this crowd was dominated by Orioles rooters. Many didnt even notice that Davey Johnson had brought out the lineup card in his return.The 45,891 in attendance at Oriole Park were treated to an excellent game, and the Orioles won 2-1 on Friday night, thanks to another outstanding performance from Jason HammelAfter one-hitting Atlanta in his last appearance, Hammel (8-2) pitched eight innings, allowing just an unearned run and five hits in eight innings, striking out 10 and walking none. And Jordan Zimmermann wasnt bad, allowing two runs and eight hits in seven innings. Zimmermann (3-6) again suffered from little run support. He hasnt won in his last five decisions, and the Nationals (40-28) havent scored more than three runs in any of those starts. In the second, Mark Reynolds, who hit a team-leading 37 home runs last year, launched his sixth of the year off Jordan Zimmermann.The Nationals tied it in the fifth. Ian Desmond led off with a single. With one out, Roger Bernadina grounded to third. As Wilson Betemit threw to Reynolds at first, Desmond took off for second and then headed for third. Reynolds fired the ball to Betemit, who wasnt in position to take the throw, and it skipped passed him, allowing Desmond to score.In the bottom of the fifth, Zimmermann hit Nick Johnson with a pitch. With two outs, Brian Roberts singled and J.J. Hardy doubled to score Johnson for a 2-1 lead.In the seventh, Desmond singled with one out. Danny Espinosa followed with another. Hammel struck out Roger Bernadina and then Jesus Flores lined a ball that looked as if it was going to be a game-changing single, but Hardy leaped and snared it, saving the lead.Jim Johnson picked up his 21st save, pitching a scoreless ninth.The Orioles (40-30) have won three of four against the Nationals ths season.NOTES:-The game was delayed for 61 minutes by the threat of thunderstorms. Some rain fell early in the game.-The Orioles Chris Davis is 0-for-22.-On Saturday, Wei Yin-Chen (7-2, 3.36) will start for the Orioles. Edwin Jackson (3-4, 3.02) starts for the Nationals. Game time is 7:15 p.m. The game will be telecast on FOX. Bob Carpenter and Tom Verducci will be the broadcasters.