Left-handed starter Gio Gonzalez had a shaky start to Thursday night’s interleague game between his Washington Nationals and the Tampa Bay Rays. Gonzalez faced seven batters in the second, allowing the Rays to take an early 1-0 lead, but the Nats came back from behind for a 5-2 victory.
Gonzalez had a lot of trouble, according to Manager Davey Johnson, due to “missing the plate” or at least that’s what home plate umpire Cory Blaser thought of his performance. He threw 98 pitches, 58 for strikes, over six innings and gave up seven hits, two runs, and two walks while striking out four and throwing one wild pitch. The minor setback was to no avail for Tampa Bay, though, because the Nats regained a temporary lead in the third inning before taking it all back in the sixth.
Second baseman and switch hitter Danny Espinosa went 2-for-4 and had a hand the two plays that put the Nats ahead to beat the Rays. Rookie left-handed starter Matt Moore gave the Nats some trouble but they still managed three hits and two runs off of him over five innings pitched. Moore’s struggles in the third came directly after Gio’s shaky second inning. That’s when Espinosa and outfielder Bryce Harper scored to take the Nats’ first lead of the night. Continue reading