Joe Ross returned to the Washington Nationals’ rotation tonight and picked up where he left off... in terms of run support received.
In his previous three major league outings this season, the 24-year-old right-hander got a ludicrous 52 runs of support [checks math], that’s right, 52 runs of support.
Ross started in what ended up 14-4, 15-12 and 23-5 wins, and by the time he was done with four scoreless tonight, that total had increased to 62 runs of support.
The Nats jumped out to a 10-0 lead with an eight-run fourth inning against the visiting Seattle Mariners and right-hander Christian Bergman in the series opener of the three-game set in D.C.
The Nationals connected for nine hits in the fourth inning, three of them home runs (by Jayson Werth, Bryce Harper, and Anthony Rendon - his second of the night) matching the franchise’s record for hits in an inning, set last August vs Atlanta.
Ross cruised with the lead, completing eight innings on the mound as he worked it all out and got back in the swing of things... so to speak. He was 1 for 3 with the bat too.
Joe Ross’s Line: 8.0 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 Ks, 1 HR, 101 P, 68 S, 10/3 GO/FO.
Nationals now 27-17
HERE’S HOW IT HAPPENED:
• Ryan Zimmerman sent a grounder through the right side of the infield for the first hit of the game off Mariners’ right-hander Christian Bergman, and one out later, on a 1-0 slider, Anthony Rendon drove in the first runs with a two-run homer to left field on a towering fly that just. kept. going, and ended up clearing the wall, 2-0. Rendon’s sixth.
• Joe Ross got off to a good start in his return to the Nationals’ rotation, with four scoreless on 48 pitches, and just one hit allowed from the first 12 batters he faced... and that single was erased by a double play.
• Washington blew things open in the fourth with nine hits, three home runs and eight runs total in the inning, in which Bergman threw 34 pitches, pushing him up to 92 total after four. The hit parade?: Anthony Rendon double; Matt Wieters’ RBI single; Michael A. Taylor single; Trea Turner RBI triple; Jayosn Werth two-run home run; Bryce Harper solo home run; Ryan Zimmerman single; Daniel Murphy single; Rendon 3-run HR.
• Christian Bergman’s Line: 4.0 IP, 14 H, 10 R< 10 ER, 2 BB, 0 K, 4 HRs, 92 P, 58 S, 2/4 GO/FO.
• Joe Ross’s bid for a shutout ended on a 3-1 sinker to Mariners’ catcher Mike Zunino, who sent a solo shot out to left to start the sixth, 10-1, but he completed a 19-pitch frame at just 78 pitches.
• Ross finished the seventh, and eighth, striking out the side on 12 pitches in his final inning of work.
• Joe Ross’s Line: 8.0 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 Ks, 1 HR, 101 P, 68 S, 10/3 GO/FO.
NATIONALS PREGAME NOTES:
- Washington started this week’s three-game set with Seattle with an 11-1 record vs the Mariners in their all-time matchup (2005-present) and a 6-0 mark against the M’s in D.C.
- In spite of their 2-4 road trip, the Nationals still started the night with a 26-17 mark, the second-best record in the NL, behind only the Colorado Rockies (29-17), and they started the six-game homestand 12-7 in Nationals Park this season.
- Matt Wieters started the night with a nine-game hitting streak going, over which he’s 11 for 26 (.306 AVG) with two doubles, two walks and three runs scored.
- Jayson Werth had his 12-game on-base streak ended on Sunday afternoon. He went 17 for 46 (.370) over the course of the streak, with two doubles, three homers, nine walks and 10 runs scored during the streak.
- Washington’s offense, as a group, led the majors in runs scored (246), AVG (.274), SLG (.471) and RBIs (237) heading into tonight’s game.
- In today’s Nationals-themed “Fun with Arbitrary End Points” segment: Daniel Murphy has a .400 AVG... over his last five games, going 8 for 20 over that stretch with two doubles and three home runs over that stretch.
- Since taking over in center for the injured Adam Eaton, Michael A. Taylor was 23 for 73 going into play today, with a .321 OBP and .521 SLFG over that stretch.
Nationals now 27-17