September 20, 2019

Washington Nationals Game 108 Review: Rendon’s Four RBIs Help Nats Topple Phils

Anthony Rendon went 3-for-5 with a homer and four RBIs to lead the Washington Nationals to a dazzling 11-0 win over the Philadelphia Phillies Saturday night at Nationals Park.

For weeks, the Nats have struggled offensively – having gone nine games without a home run, a streak in which the team’s highest run total was six, in a crushing defeat to the Miami Marlins.

But, on Saturday night against Philadelphia starter A.J. Burnett, the Nats seemingly made up for the slump in a matter of innings.

After Anthony Rendon’s first-inning single knocked in the Nats’ first run of the game, he returned in the second only to power a three-run shot over the center-field wall that made it 5-0 Nationals.

The early push sparked all the momentum needed to help each of the starting Nationals tally at least one hit in Saturday’s contest, including starting pitcher Jordan Zimmermann, who added a run himself to the Nats’ tally by day’s end.

Zimmermann was sharp on the mound as well, backed by Rendon’s early insurance. In seven innings pitched, Zimmermann allowed no runs on five hits and no walks while striking out eight batters through 97 total pitches. The win marked the 50th of his career and just hist first in five starts.

Burnett on the other hand struggled through his short stint, lasting just 1.2 innings.

Due to a fielding error by second baseman Chase Utley to help start the second inning, only one of Burnett’s five runs allowed was considered earned. But, the starter’s three hits and two walks allowed didn’t help matters much.

From there, Philadelphia reliever Phillippe Aumont brought things from bad to orse for the Phillies.

After forcing Adam LaRoche to ground out to start the third, he walked Ian Desmond. Desmond quickly stole second and scored on a single by Bryce Harper.

In the fourth inning, everything fell apart once and for all for the Phillies.

Denard Span sparked an inning that began with a single, double, single, double and sacrifice fly to knock in three runs. After Harper struck out swinging, the rout continued courtesy of Cabrera’s triple and Wilson Ramos’s single –  to round out an inning in which the Nats tallied five runs to make it 11-0.

From there, the Nas’ bats quieted but, more importantly, the Phillies’ offense never awakened.

Philadelphia relievers Cesar Jimenez, Mario Hollands and Antonio Bastardo combined to toss 3.1 innings of scoreless baseball, but of course it didn’t matter much.

In that same time frame, Zimmermann easily recorded his seventh victory of the season, while Jerry Blevins and Blake Treinen each provided an inning of scoreless relief.

 


THE GOOD: Obviously, few Nationals fans would complain about an 11-0 rout of the Philadelphia Phillies. While the offense was a huge plus – and a sign of Washington’s capabilities at the plate – what was perhaps even more impressive was Jordan Zimmermann’s performance. Of course, having a five-run cushion by the end of the second inning helps to alleviate any sense of pressure; however, it is easy for a starter to feel over-confident when provided such a clear view of a win. Instead of lazily allowing a run here or there, Zimmermann was lights-out through all seven innings pitched.

THE BAD: No bad news to report out of this one. The true test now will be to see how the Nats carry their offense in Sunday’s rubber game.

THE UGLY: A.J. Burnett has plenty reason to feel disappointed but, by luck of the draw, he walked away from Saturday’s game with only one earned run credited towards his ERA.

THE STATS: 11 R, 14 H, 4 BB, 6 K, 8 LOB, 7-for-15 RISP

About Alyssa Wolice

Alyssa Wolice is a Staff Writer for District Sports Page covering the Nationals and Wizards. As a former production assistant, she covered the Nationals, Redskins, Capitals, Wizards, D.C. United and local collegiate teams. You can follow Alyssa on Twitter @awolice.

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