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posted: 9/3/2012 4:24 PM

Cubs give Nationals their first winning season

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  • The Cubs' Tony Campana dives back to first base Monday as the Washington Nationals' Adam LaRoche tries to field a pick-off attempt by pitcher Tyler Clippard during the ninth inning at Nationals Park.

      The Cubs' Tony Campana dives back to first base Monday as the Washington Nationals' Adam LaRoche tries to field a pick-off attempt by pitcher Tyler Clippard during the ninth inning at Nationals Park.
    Associated Press

 
Associated Press

WASHINGTON -- Ross Detwiler allowed four hits in seven shutout innings and Adam LaRoche homered Monday, giving the Washington Nationals their first winning season with a 2-1 victory over the Cubs.

The NL East-leading Nationals improved to 82-52. The club moved from Montreal to Washington for the 2005 season and went 81-81 that year. In 2008 and 2009, the team lost a combined 205 games, then finished 80-81 in 2011.

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The Nationals' win allowed them to hold their 6-game division lead over Atlanta.

Detwiler (9-6) struck out three and walked three, and allowed a runner to third only once.

Jeff Samardzija (8-13) gave up a long home run to LaRoche to lead off the second. LaRoche's 25th home run landed in the front row of the second deck. It's the fourth time in his career LaRoche has hit 25 or more home runs.

Ryan Zimmerman's RBI double scored Bryce Harper in the eighth for the second run.

Drew Storen pitched a perfect eighth.

Tyler Clippard allowed two hits and a two-out RBI single to Welington Castillo in the ninth. Clippard threw the ball away for an error and allowed pinch-runner Tony Campana advance to second before striking out Josh Vitters for his 30th save in 33 opportunities.

Samardzija gave up seven hits in seven innings. He walked one and struck out eight.

The Cubs, whose loss on Sunday guaranteed a third straight losing season, have dropped three straight.

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