Washington Nationals’ lefty Gio Gonzalez took a no-hit bid into the fifth, and a shutout bid into the sixth, but he ended up leaving the game with some sort of discomfort (rib issue?) with runners on the corners in the top of the sixth inning.
The two runners he left on base scored on a 3-run blast by Nelson Cruz, who hit a 2-1 slider from Jacob Turner to left-center to put the Seattle Mariners up 3-2 after six.
Robinson Cano hit an RBI single in the seventh, 4-2, and the Mariners avoided a sweep with a win in the series finale, which was their first win in Washington, D.C. since 2005, when baseball returned to the nation’s capital.
And since there was no baseball in D.C. between 1977 (the Mariners’ first season) and 2005, it was actually their first win in the nation’s capital... ever?
Am I missing something obvious here or is that true?
Nationals now 28-18
HERE’S HOW IT HAPPENED:
• Gio Gonzalez walked the leadoff batters in the first and third innings, but erased both runners, on a strike’em out, throw’em out double play in the first, and a 5-4-3 DP in the Mariners’ third. He was up to 45 pitches total after three scoreless.
• Both starters threw four scoreless and hitless innings to start the game. A one-out double to right by Kyle Seager in the fifth ended Gonzalez’s nascent no-hit bid, and he issued his third walk of the game in the next at bat, creating a jam for the first time.
A wild pitch/passed ball moved both runners into scoring position with one down, and a second straight walk loaded them up before Gonzalez recorded back-to-back Ks to end the threat.
• Anthony Rendon broke up Ariel Miranda’s no-hit bid up in dramatic fashion with a solo homer to left on a 1-1 splitter in the first at bat of the Nats’ fifth, sending his fourth home run of the series and ninth home run of the season out over the fence to put the Nationals up, 1-0.
• Jayson Werth got to a 2-2 count later in the fifth and hit a 2-out, RBI single to center on Miranda’s 27th pitch of the frame. 2-0 game.
• Gonzalez, who seemed to have some sort of rib issue going on, which he aggravated on a couple swings, was lifted with runners on first and third in the sixth, nine pitches into the inning and 96 pitches into his outing.
• Jacob Turner took over and left a 2-1 slider up for Nelson Cruz, who parked it and put the Mariners up, 3-2. HR No. 12 for Cruz.
• Gio Gonzalez’s Line: 5.1 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 4 BB, 8 Ks, 96 P, 50 S, 2/1 GO/FO.
• Ariel Miranda’s Line: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 4 Ks, 1 HR, 85 P, 52 S, 4/2 GO/FO.
• Tony Zych worked around a 2-out single by Anthony Rendon (6 for 11 in series) for a scoreless sixth inning, still 3-2 Mariners.
• Jacob Turner gave up back-to-back one-out singles in the seventh, creating a jam for himself. Matt Grace came on to face Robinson Cano with two on and one out and after getting up 0-2, gave up an RBI single to right on a 2-2 slider. 4-2 Mariners.
• Blake Treinen got a double play to get the Nationals out of the seventh, down by two, and Matt Albers kept it close, striking out the side in the eighth.
• Nick Vincent and Marc Rzepczynski combined for a scoreless eighth inning, still 4-2 Mariners.
• Albers and Oliver Perez combined for a scoreless eighth.
• Edwin Diaz worked around a two-out single for a scoreless ninth. Ballgame, 4-2 Mariners final.
NATIONALS PREGAME NOTES:
- With their second win in a row, Washington improved to 13-1 against Seattle in the all-time series between the two teams, and the Nationals are now 8-0 against the Mariners in the nation’s capital.
- Washington’s 28-17 record after last night’s win is the second-best in the NL, behind only the Colorado Rockies (31-17).
- Washington’s offense started the afternoon finale with Seattle leading the majors in runs scored (261), home runs (70), AVG (.277), SLG (.477), extra-base hits (169), OBP (.348), and RBIs (.252).
- In today’s Nationals-themed “Fun with Arbitrary End Points” segment: Anthony Rendon is batting .338 with six doubles, a triple, eight home runs, 14 walks, 16 runs scored and 26 driven in... since April 30th.
- Matt Wieters, who is sitting today, extended his hit streak to 11-straight games with a single late in last night’s win.
- Gio Gonzalez was facing the Mariners for the first time as a member of the Nationals’ rotation today. It was his first start against Seattle since 2011.
Nationals now 28-18