There weren’t quite as many bodies in the stands as there were hours earlier for game one of the split day-night doubleheader against the Miami Marlins at Nationals Park, but the Washington Nationals managed to wrap the day with a walk-off to beat Miami 5-4 in game two.
Manager Davey Johnson was quick to acknowledge the fact that the night’s right-handed starter Stephen Strasburg didn’t pitch a good game. Strasburg threw six innings and gave up three runs (one homerun) on 109 pitches (71 strikes) and walked two batters while striking out six. Continue reading →
Jayson Werth celebrated a career milestone at Nationals Park on Saturday night against his former team the Philadelphia Phillies as he launched his 1,000 career hit off a pitch from right-handed reliever Zach Miner to the left field bleachers for a two-run, go-ahead homerun in the seventh inning. The Washington Nationals would go on to beat the Phillies 8-5 in a game that looked nearly out of reach early on.
Despite all of the unfortunate missed opportunities the Nats have lived through in 2013, Saturday night’s game was a nice example of what the team can accomplish if they work with what they’ve. Right-handed starter Taylor Jordan had a rocky second inning versus Philadelphia in which he gave up four runs leaving Washington in an early rut. But that wouldn’t be the end all of the night.
The Nationals managed to prevent a shut-out game versus the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday night but wasted a quality start by right-handed pitcher Stephen Strasburg falling 4-2 in game three of a four game series. In the team’s season-high sixth consecutive loss, the Nats starter threw eight innings and gave up two hits and one run – a homerun to Pirates third baseman Pedro Alvarez in the second inning – while striking out a season-high twelve batters on 118 pitches and 80 strikes.
The Washington Nationals were three outs away from a one-run loss against the fourth place New York Mets on Tuesday night but Steve Lombardozzi saved the game by hitting a walk-off sacrifice fly into the glove of Mike Baxter in left field. His sacrifice fly sent first baseman Adam LaRoche around to score. Washington beat New York 3-2 in their first walk-off victory of the season.
The Nats may have won the game but it was night in which the their offense continued to struggle. Manager Davey Johnson’s lineup managed four hits before their three-hit ninth inning rally. They were lucky enough to score early on a solo home run hit by shortstop Ian Desmond off right-handed pitcher Jeremy Hefner in the second inning — Desmond’s eighth home run of the season — but that’s the only run they’d tally up until the ninth inning.
What started out as a four inning pitching duel between former Nationals pitcher and current Chicago Cub Edwin Jackson and Washington’s Stephen Strasburg quickly turned in favor of Chicago due to a messy fifth inning performance from the young phenom. The Nats went on to lose the contest 8-2 on Saturday afternoon. The Cubs hit four unearned runs off of Strasburg in the fourth inning and four more earned runs off left-handed reliever Zach Duke in the fifth to win it.
Strasburg has struggled for the entirety of the 2013 season minus Opening Day. When he lets his emotions get the best of him – like he did Saturday – it’s easier to remember just how young he actually is. When Strasburg’s got his three pitches working for him, he’s a force to be reckoned with, but he’s still in the growing phase where he’s learning to deal with the adversity within the game itself. Manager Davey Johnson acknowledged that fact that the game.
For the second time in that many days, the Nationals fell to St. Louis, losing 2-0 Tuesday night, on six strong innings of work from left-handed starting pitcher Ross Detwiler. Detwiler gave up two runs on eight hits, walked two, and struck out two on 93 pitches (60 strikes).
Washington’s defense was the strongest positive worth noting in a game where their bats fell short. In the first five innings, the Nats turned four successful double plays to rob St. Louis of additional runs. But not even spectacular defense from shortstop Ian Desmond, second baseman Danny Espinosa, first baseman Adam LaRoche, catcher Kurt Suzuki, and Detwiler could win them the game. Continue reading →
Ryan Zimmerman knew the 2012 Washington Nationals had a good team back in the spring. He acknowledged that they were young but if they could learn from the game and come together as a team that everything would eventually start to click.
It’s safe to say now, after years of hard work and determination as one of Major League Baseball’s best third basemen, that Zimmerman was right. The Nats clinched their first-ever National League East division title Monday night despite losing 2-0 against their long-time division rival the Philadelphia Phillies.
News of the title spread throughout the ballpark via the center field scoreboard in the middle of the ninth inning when the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Atlanta Braves, thereby securing the Nats’ place as NL East champions. Fans were in a frenzy as Michael Morse came to bat, leading off the bottom of the ninth. They sang A-Ha’s “Take On Me” in unison, as has become tradition at Nats Park when Morse comes to bat later on in the game. The roar of verbal thunder that spread through the Navy Yard air was one to be savored for years to come. Continue reading →
If you’re looking for consistency then look no further than RHP Jordan Zimmermann. The Nationals’ third starter in the rotation secured his seventh victory of the season Wednesday night with a 4-3 Washington win against New York, pushing him to a winning record of 7-6 thus far. This is the first time Zimmermann’s had a winning record since his 2009 rookie season.
His biggest struggle of the season is one that’s been out of his hands though. Run support behind his pitching is bellow average when compared to the rest of the rotation. The Nats average 3.95 runs with Zimmermann on the mound and 4.16 runs a game. Zimmermann was 2-2 with a 3.56 ERA against the Mets in nine career starting appearances before last night and has worked at least 6.0 innings in all 19 starts this season. Continue reading →
Nationals starting pitcher Ross Detwiler went into Saturday night’s game with a 2.63 ERA and came out of it with a 3.65. Long story short – Detwiler didn’t have a good night against the first place Baltimore Orioles.
As the newest member of Steve McCatty’s rotation, having landed the fifth spot just before the start of the season, Detwiler’s had a good couple months with Washington. The Orioles found a way around that with their bats, though, and that’s all it took to secure an early lead and eventual 6-5 victory over Washington. Continue reading →
While most of DC was at the Verizon Center (or camping out in front of their television sets) watching game three of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, Nationals fans turned up at ballpark for Stephen Strasburg’s 2012 home debut against the Houston Astros. The park wasn’t packed but that didn’t stop Strasburg from continuing to prove his worth as a young, reliable baseball talent. Continue reading →