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Article updated: 4/9/2013 11:20 PM

Nats' 4 blasts trump Sox' pair

The White Sox’ Paul Konerko celebrates with shortstop Alexei Ramirez (10) after his 3-run homer in the seventh inning Tuesday against the Nationals.

The White Sox' Paul Konerko celebrates with shortstop Alexei Ramirez (10) after his 3-run homer in the seventh inning Tuesday against the Nationals.

 

Associated Press

 The White Sox’s Paul Konerko pauses to watch his first homer of the season, a 3-run shot in the seventh inning Tuesday against the Nationals.

The White Sox's Paul Konerko pauses to watch his first homer of the season, a 3-run shot in the seventh inning Tuesday against the Nationals.

 

Associated Press

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The White Sox met their match Tuesday night.

Before opening a three-game series at Washington, the Sox went 4-2 at U.S. Cellular to start the season, and they leaned heavily on the home run while winning two of three from both Kansas City and Seattle.

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Much like the White Sox, the Nationals have also relied on the longball for the bulk of their offense in the early going.

Two quality starting pitchers -- the Sox' Jake Peavy and the Nats' Gio Gonzalez -- figured to erase much of the thunder in Game 1 of this interleague matchup, but it was bombs away most of the night.

And in the end, Washington had a touch more thump than the Sox.

The Nationals hit 4 home runs in an 8-7 win over the White Sox, who were powered by Paul Konerko's first homer of the season, a 3-run shot in the seventh inning, and Alex Rios' 2-run blast in the ninth.

Continuing to pick up where he left off last season, Rios has homered in four straight games. The right fielder also had 2 assists against the Nats.

Another plus for the Sox was Alejandro De Aza and Jeff Keppinger finally getting it going at the top of the order.

De Aza was 3-for-4 with 2 doubles, 2 runs scored and a walk. Keppinger, who got off to a 1-for-21 start, was 2-for-5 with 2 runs scored.

It was a tough night for Peavy, as well as Gonzalez, who lasted only 5 innings because of a high (99) pitch count.

Peavy pitched 513 innings and allowed 6 runs on 9 hits. The right-hander served up 3 homers -- a solo shot by Ian Desmond in the fifth inning, a 3-run home run by Jayson Werth in the sixth and a 2-run homer by Adam LaRoche, also in the sixth inning.

LaRoche, who was 0-for-15 on the season before connecting against Peavy, added a solo home run off Matt Thornton in the eighth inning.

The Nationals have hit 10 home runs in their past three games.

The White Sox lost more than the game Tuesday.

Earlier in the day, pitching coach Don Cooper was hospitalized in Arlington, Va., for diverticulitis.

Ventura told reporters Cooper could be back for tonight's game.

"He's not feeling too good but he can still talk," Ventura said.

"You know that."

During the game, second baseman Gordon Beckham made an early exit in the third inning with nerve irritation in his left wrist. Beckham injured himself batting against Gonzalez and is likely to miss a few games.

"I knew something was wrong," Beckham said told CSNChicago.com. "There is definitely some pain. It's going to take a couple days. It hurts now just standing here."

sgregor@dailyherald.com

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