The Associated Press
ATLANTA — Jordan Zimmermann turned in another dominant performance with two-hit ball over eight innings, Ian Desmond hit a two-run homer in the fourth and the Washington Nationals finally beat the Atlanta Braves, 2-0 Wednesday night.
The Braves had won five in a row this season over their NL East rival, and nine straight dating to last season.
Zimmermann (5-1) made sure that streak ended with what is starting to become a typical outing, snapping a three-game losing streak that had knocked the Nationals under .500.
Atlanta starter Paul Maholm (3-3) nearly matched Zimmermann. He allowed only three hits in eight innings, retiring the last 13 batters he faced.
But Desmond provided all the runs that Washington needed, homering to left-center on a 1-1 pitch in the fourth after Bryce Harper led off with a walk.
The only Atlanta hitters to reach against Zimmermann were Justin Upton, who singled with two outs in the first, and Maholm, who doubled into the right-field corner in the third.
Zimmermann struck out eight and retired 17 straight Atlanta hitters before giving way to Rafael Soriano, who worked a perfect ninth for his eighth save.
Harper had to leave the game in the middle of the sixth after appearing to tweak his left side on a check swing. He completed the at-bat, grounding out sharply to first, but headed to the clubhouse after talking with manager Davey Johnson and the training staff.