December 11, 2019

Washington Nationals Game 104 Review: Diamondbacks top Nats 6-4 despite late rally

NATIONALS CONTINUE TO STRUGGLE WITH LIMP OFFENSE

The Washington Nationals succumbed to a dearth of offense Monday night against the Arizona Diamondbacks, losing 6-4, despite a ninth inning rally. Zack Godley threw six innings of shutout baseball, giving up just three hits and walking a pair. The rookie was dominant against the Nats, throwing just 83 pitches, and striking out six. Doug Fister struggled with the long ball against the Diamondbacks, who hit three home runs off the sinkerballer. The Nationals made a valiant effort with the late rally, but were ultimately rebuffed and fell for the eighth time in 11 games. [Read more…]

Washington Nationals Series Preview: Arizona Diamondbacks

At least there’s not a lot of time to sit and think about it.

After a weekend sweep by the Mets in New York closed out a 3-7 road trip for the Nationals (54-49), they return home for a seven game home stand, beginning with four games against the Diamondbacks (50-53).

The Nationals are in the midst of 20 straight games without a day off, and the series against the Diamondbacks begins a stretch of 17 straight games against National League West opponents. The Mets, now tied with the Nationals for first place in the East, begin a road trip through Florida where they will play the Marlins and then the Rays this weekend.

*The Last Time…

The Nationals took two out of three from the Diamondbacks in Arizona in May. For a team that hasn’t scored many runs recently maybe four games against the D-Backs will help – the Nationals put up 11, 6, and 9 runs in the three game series in May.

*In The Other Dugout

The Diamondbacks were neither buyers nor sellers at the trade deadline. In fact, they were the only team in Major League Baseball not to make a deal at the trading deadline. Despite entering the series with the Nationals three games under .500, the Diamondbacks aren’t completely out of the race yet – they’re 9 games back of the Dodgers in the National League West, but only six and a half back of the Giants and Cubs in the chase for the second wild card spot.

*Matchup To Watch

Paul Goldschmidt hasn’t faced Nationals pitchers too much in his career, but his numbers against Gio Gonzalez stand out – he’s 4 for 6 against Wednesday night’s Nationals starter.

*Probables

Monday, 7:05pm: Zack Godley (2-0, 2.25 ERA) vs. Doug Fister (4-6, 4.39 ERA)

Tuesday, 7:05pm: Patrick Corbin (2-3, 3.21 ERA) vs. Max Scherzer (11-8, 2.22 ERA)

Wednesday, 7:05pm: Rubby De La Rosa (8-5, 4.59 ERA) vs. Gio Gonzalez (8-4, 3.75 ERA)

Thursday, 4:05pm: Jeremy Hellickson (7-7, 4.95 ERA) vs. Joe Ross (2-3, 3.00 ERA)

Washington Nationals Game 35 Review: Taylor slam in ninth caps comeback win

GRAND SLAM BY MICHAEL TAYLOR IN NINTH INNING DELIVERS COME-FROM-BEHIND WIN

Trailing by one run entering the ninth inning, the Washington Nationals put together a four-run rally, capped by rookie Michael Taylor’s first career grand slam, and the Nats came back to defeat the Arizona Diamondbacks 9-6, taking two out of three in the desert to start the seven-game west coast road trip.

The Nats move to 19-16 on the season and are two games behind the New York Mets in the N.L. East.

The rally started with one out against Arizona closer Addison Reed. Denard Span singled to center and went to second on Yunel Escobar’s single. Jayson Werth then worked a walk, to bring up Taylor, who was inserted into the game in the seventh with Bryce Harper was ejected for arguing a dicey check-swing strikeout call.

Taylor took the first pitch in the dirt. Facing getting behind the hitter, Reed served up a center-cut fastball, and the rookie clobbered it to straight-away center field, while the fielders could do nothing but turn and watch it leave the park.

Entering their 10-game road trip, the Washington Nationals had won 10 of their previous 12 games to push their season record three games over .500. After a promising start Monday night in an 11-1 win, the Nats were pounded 14-4 Tuesday and the rubber match set up ominously until the final inning.

Gio Gonzalez pitched in and out of trouble seemingly in every inning, and his final numbers were nothing to write home about. He allowed five earned runs on nine hits and two walks, striking out just three.

The D-backs broke out first in the second inning. Nick Ahmed singled with Chris Owings on second base. Owings scored when Jose Lobaton couldn’t handle Werth’s throw from left.

Werth more than made up for his late throw in the next inning, clubbing a three-run homer to left center, scoring Span, who’d walked, and Escobar, who was hit by a pitch.

That 3-1 lead didn’t last long.

In the bottom of the frame, Ender Inciarte singled to lead off and took second when Mark Trumbo walked on four pitches. Paul Goldschmidt doubled to the deepest part of left center, plating Inciarte. A.J. Pollock grounded out, bringing home Trumbo, and Goldschmidt scored on Ian Desmond’s fielding error of Aaron Hill’s routine grounder.

Arizona picked up its fifth run in the fifth. Goldschmidt tripled, then scored on Pollock’s single.

Trailing 5-3 in the sixth, with two outs Danny Espinosa drew a walk. Manager Matt Williams called Gonzalez back from the on-deck circle and sent Tyler Moore up to pinch-hit. The slugger connected on an 0-1 fastball and it clanged off the left field foul pole, tying the game.

The fielding bug bit again in the eight. Desmond botched another ground ball, but Inciarte was thrown out stealing. Aaron Barrett came on and walked Trumbo, his first batter. After Goldschmidt struck out, Pollock singled and pinch-hitter Yasmany Tomas delivered a single up the middle, scoring Trumbo to give Arizona a one-run lead.

All of which set up the ninth-inning heroics.

After the grand slam, Drew Storen had a 1-2-3 ninth to nail down the save.

HERO: Michael Taylor. Closed Addison Reed was struggling, and he squared up the fastball for the game-winning grand slam.

GOAT: Reed. I mean, come on.

NATS NOTES:

  • Given the boot: In the seventh, Bryce Harper was called out on a very close check swing call by home plate umpire Rob Drake. Harper protested and was ejected. Williams came out to defend his star and was ejected along with Harper.
  • Tanner Roark gave up three hits and two walks in 1 2/3 innings, but managed to keep Arizona off the scoreboard.

NEXT GAME: Thursday at 10:10 pm EST. Doug Fister (2-1, 2.87) faces Tyson Ross (1-3, 3.98).

Washington Nationals Game 34 Review: Strasburg roughed up in Arizona slugfest

Stephen Strasburg was pulled early from his last start, complaining of misalignment of his upper back and his still not-100 percent left ankle. A visit to a chiropractor was seemingly the solution, as the big righty took the mound Tuesday for the Washington Nationals for a start against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

He probably should have stayed on the trainer’s table.

Strasburg couldn’t get out of the fourth inning and was pounded for eight runs on eight hits and a walk and the Nats fell in embarrassing fashion, 14-6. [Read more…]

Washington Nationals Game 33 Review: Offense lights up Arizona

Everything came up Nats in the first game of a seven-game west coast swing as the Washington Nationals plated 10 runs before the end of the second inning and Max Scherzer pitch seven solid innings to register an 11-1 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks before a paltry crowd at Chase Field.

The Nats (18-15) have won five straight and climb to within 2 1/2 games of the first place New York Mets. [Read more…]

Washington Nationals Series Preview: Arizona Diamondbacks

Outside of three games against the Cardinals in April, all of the Nationals’ games so far this season have been against National League East or American League East opponents. That changes this week, when the Nationals make their first trip out west, starting with three games in Arizona. Hope you’re rested, Nats fans…some late nights lie ahead this week.

The Diamondbacks (14-16) have run hot and cold so far this season. They’ve had a three-game losing streak and a four-game losing streak, and though they haven’t won more than three games in a row, they’ve won back-to-back games three other times.

The Nationals have finally gotten themselves over .500, at 17-15, and they sit comfortably in second place, two games in front of Miami and three and a half games behind the Mets. The Nats, after their three game sweep of the Braves, are now 10-6 at home, but they’re 7-9 on the road as they embark on this seven game road trip.

The Last Time…

The Nationals swept a four-game series from the Diamondbacks the last time these two teams met — in Washington last August, as the Nationals concluded a 10-game win streak. Almost exactly a year ago the Nationals took two out of three from the Diamondbacks in Arizona.

In The Other Dugout

Paul Goldschmidt missed the final two months of last season with a broken left hand. He has quickly erased any doubts that he would be back to his All Star form in 2015, following up a .338, five-homer April with a .394 May in which he has already hit four home runs.

Matchup To Watch

Not many Diamondbacks have faced all three of the projected Washington starters in this series. Mark Trumbo has, without a lot of success. Against Max Scherzer (0 for 8, 6 Ks), Stephen Strasburg (0 for 3, 2 Ks), and Gio Gonzalez (3 for 14, 7 Ks), Trumbo is a combined 3 for 25.

Probables

Monday, 9:40pm: Max Scherzer (2-3, 2.11 ERA) vs. Josh Collmenter (3-3, 3.40 ERA)

Tuesday, 9:40pm: Stephen Strasburg (2-3, 4.73 ERA) vs. Robbie Ray (1-0, 1.50 ERA)

Wednesday, 3:40pm: Gio Gonzalez (3-2, 3.62 ERA) vs. Rubby De La Rosa (3-2, 4.38 ERA)

Washington Nationals Game 125 Review: Nats Walk off Yet Again to Extend Win Streak to Nine

ANTHONY RENDON’S PINCH-HIT SINGLE HELPS NATS EDGE DIAMONDBACKS

For the fourth time in five games, the Washington Nationals won in walk-off fashion – this time, to record a 3-2 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks Wednesday night at Nationals Park.

Anthony Rendon started the day on the bench, but with one out and two on – and the game on the line – Nationals manager Matt Williams opted to insert Rendon into the order. And, in return, the Nats earned their ninth consecutive “Curly W,” improving their record to a National League-best 72-53 and extending their lead over the Atlanta Braves to seven games in the NL East.

Starter Tanner Roark was sharp as he allowed no runs on five hits and one walk through seven innings pitched.

The Nats provided Roark with a 1-0 lead in the second inning when, with runners on first and third, Wilson Ramos hit into an RBI fielder’s choice off the Diamondbacks’ Trevor Cahill. [Read more…]

Washington Nationals Game 124 Review: Nats Shut Down Diamondbacks to Extend Win Streak to Eight

With their current win streak numbering eight games, the Washington Nationals would likely invite the Arizona Diamondbacks to stay in town if given the option.

Tuesday night brought their largest margin of victory of the Arizona squad thus far as Ian Desmond and Asdrubal Cabrera together batted in seven of the Nats’ runs en route to an 8-1 win.

The heavy hitting likely helped starter Stephen Strasburg (W, 10-10) find his comfort zone as he allowed just one earned run – a homer by David Peralta – on three hits and one walk through 8.0 innings pitched. He also threw 61 of 95 pitches for strikes, and struck out four batters.

Arizona pitching didn’t fare so well.

Starter Chase Anderson (L, 7-5) lasted just two innings, during which he gave up six runs on six hits and three walks. Perhaps surprisingly yet, all six of Anderson’s runs allowed occurred in the third inning – before an out was recorded.

It was actually the Diamondbacks who struck first – the only time in which they posted a run on the board.

After Strasburg retired the first two batters of the game, Peralta worked him to a 2-2 count on five pitches before powering a four-seam fastball over the right-center field wall.

Following two fairly quiet innings, the Nats answered. Oh, did they. [Read more…]

Washington Nationals Game 123 Review: Nats Walk Off for Third Straight Game to Extend Win Streak to Seven

It’s been the same story for three consecutive games, but for the Washington Nationals, it hasn’t gotten old.

To cap off an up-and-down performance against the Arizona Diamondbacks, Adam LaRoche hit a solo home run to hand the Nationals a 5-4 walk-off win in 11 innings at Nationals Park Monday night.

The victory marked the Nats’ third straight walk-off win – a feat that has never before happened in Nationals history.

Washington starter Jordan Zimmermann came up with a decent performance, allowing three runs on four hits and three walks through seven innings pitched, while striking out only two. It was, however, enough to keep the Nationals in the hunt, although Zimmermann did allow the Diamondbacks to retake the lead in the eighth before being relieved.

Until that point, Zimmermann’s only run allowed came by way of a Mark Trumbo walk, Miguel Montero single and, following a sacrifice bunt, a sacrifice fly by Jake Lamb that made it 1-0 Diamondbacks. [Read more…]

Washington Nationals Game 40 Review: Ninth Inning Drama Salvages Victory Over Diamondbacks

In an afternoon duel between two pitchers, the Washington Nationals needed a ninth inning rally to defeat the Arizona Diamondbacks in Phoenix, 5-1.

From the early going, runs were at a premium as we witnessed a duel in the desert on the mound. Both Washignton’s Doug Fister (7 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 6 K, 100 PC) and Arizona’s Brandon McCarthy (8 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 7 K, 101 PC) brought their ace material to the diamond. It wasn’t until the third inning that either team’s offense started to make some noise.

[Read more…]

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