The Washington Nationals downed the Philadephia Phillies 5-4 on Sunday, with Taiwanese starter Wang Chien-ming (2-2) pitching 5-2/3 innings in his first duel with Roy Halladay (15-5), one of the best pitchers in the major leagues, in more than two years.
The Taiwanese right-hander, who pitched in his fifth start this season since returning from a shoulder injury in 2009, showed steady improvement that was recognized by manager Davey Johnson.
“He’s kind of where I thought he’d be,” Johnson was quoted as saying by the Washington Examiner.
Wang said of his 89-pitch outing: “I could have performed better today.”
Johnson said if it had not been for a rain delay, he would have let the 31-year-old starter throw up to 100 pitches. He said Wang would continue to start for the Nationals for the rest of the season.
“I keep seeing progress,” Johnson said. “How far he’s going to be able to take it, nobody knows.”
The Nats broke a 4-4 tie in the bottom of the 10th with Jonny Gomes’ walk forcing a run when the bases were loaded to beat the No. 1 team in the National League at home.
Wang allowed five hits and two homers. He struck out four and walked one before the rain caused a 71-minute delay in the game.
Phillies ace Halladay, who also left the mound after the rain delay, gave up seven hits and two earned runs over five innings. He struck out five.
It was their fifth duel in the majors since 2007 and it left their pitching records against each other dead even. Both Wang and Halladay have one win and one loss against each other.
Because of the tied score when the rain delay began, the game will count as another draw between the two aces.