October 22, 2019

Washington Nationals Game 65 Review: Bats explode in 16-4 win over Tampa Bay

After a 6-1 loss on Monday, the Washington Nationals rebounded for a borderline absurd 16-4 shellacking of the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field on Tuesday behind five hits from Danny Espinosa and home runs from Bryce Harper, Clint Robinson and Wilson Ramos, who hit two off of two different position players.

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Washington Nationals Series Preview: Tampa Bay Rays

After a tough loss to Milwaukee Friday night, the Nationals (33-30) seem to have gotten back on course over the weekend. Even without Ryan Zimmerman, the Nats took two straight from the Brewers, with Max Scherzer putting the exclamation point on the weekend with his one-hit, 16-strikeout performance on Sunday.

The Nationals’ course correction might have happened just in time. They begin a tough 10-game stretch with four games against the Tampa Bay Rays (35-29), with the first two of those games taking place in Florida and the second two in Washington. After the Rays, the Pirates and the Braves will pay visits to Nationals Park, making it three straight opponents that are in the hunt.

Of course, the Nationals are in their own chase, as they’ll start the series with Tampa a half-game behind the Mets, who open up their own home-and-home series with the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday.

*The Last Time…

The Nationals and Rays haven’t played since June, 2012. The Nationals took two out of three in a series notable for the fact that a young (er?) Chris Archer made his major league debut. Archer was tagged with the loss in the second game of the series, but he pitched well, giving up just one earned run in six innings, striking out 7.

*In The Other Dugout

If you haven’t been paying much attention to the Rays this year, well, who can blame you? They lost Joe Maddon to the Cubs, they have no recognizable hitters other than Evan Longoria, and they weren’t expected to do anything this year.

Led mostly by some stellar starting pitching, though, the Rays are a team that a lot of people have started to take notice of. Tampa is tied for first in the American League East, and they come into this series with Washington on a three-game winning streak.

*Matchup To Watch

There aren’t many players in this series who have faced each other all that much professionally, but one line that stands out is Yunel Escobar’s 4 for 7 against Erasmo Ramirez, including a double. Ramirez starts against Washington Monday night.

*Probables

Monday, 7:10pm: Gio Gonzalez (4-3, 4.42 ERA) vs. Erasmo Ramirez (5-2, 4.96 ERA)

Tuesday, 7:10pm: Tanner Roark (2-2, 3.71 ERA) vs. Alex Colome (3-2, 4.21 ERA)

Wednesday, 7:00pm: Matt Andriese (1-1, 3.76 ERA) vs. Jordan Zimmermann (5-4, 3.74 ERA)

Thursday, 7:05pm: Chris Archer (7-4, 2.00 ERA) vs. Joe Ross (1-1, 3.46 ERA)

 

In a war of words, Rays’ Joe Maddon comes out looking foolish

In my piece for MASNSports.com today, I re-examined the war of words over the “unwritten rules” of baseball that Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon apparently thought Washington Nationals skipper Davey Johnson broke when Johnson asked for the written rules of baseball to be enforced Tuesday night.

I made a fairly broad criticism of Maddon, concluding that “Maddon went way overboard calling Johnson’s integrity into question.” I used adult words because of my affiliation with MASNSports.com, a reputable media organization, which also happens to be the rightsholder for Nats baseball. I did not want to appear unprofessional in that format. [Read more…]

Washington Nationals Game 66 Review: Strasburg makes three-run first inning stand up

The first three Washington Nationals hitters against Tampa Bay Rays starter Chris Archer — making his MLB debut — all scored, setting a tone for what looked like a laugher at steamy Nats Park Wednesday night. But Archer settled down, the Nats bats never reawakened, and they left the heavy lifting to their ace, Stephen Strasburg.

The big right-hander made those three first inning runs stand up, ending the Nats four-game losing streak in the process, as the Nats escaped with a 3-2 win over the Rays before 27,485 hot, sweaty patrons. [Read more…]

NATS: Where are Teddy’s Glasses?

After the GEICO Presidents Race on Tuesday, June 19 at Nationals Park, we noticed that Teddy Roosevelt looked different. He was missing his glasses! Where are Teddy’s glasses? Teddy needs them back if he ever wants to win.

Where are Teddy’s Glasses? Racing President Teddy Roosevelt after GEICO Presidents Race at Nationals Park, June 19, 2012 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Here is what Teddy looks like with his glasses! [Racing Presidents on Tuesday, May 15, 2012 (George ended up with victory)] (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Washington Nationals Game 65 Review: Nats catch Rays in sticky situation but lose game 5-4

Rays and former Nats relief pitcher Joel Peralta walking off the field with Rays Manager Joe Maddon after Peralta was ejected for pine tar in his glove at Nationals Park. June 19, 2012 (Cheryl Nichols/District Sports Page)

Washington Nationals starting pitcher Chien-Ming Wang was pushed around by the Tampa Bay Rays, allowing five early runs before departing after just 3 1/3 innings pitched, as the Nats dropped a 5-4 decision before 27,835 at Nats Park.

It was the Nats fourth straight loss and drops their record to 38-27. [Read more…]

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