Gio Gonzalez tied a career high (set in 2011) and matched a Nationals’ franchise record (set by Tony Armas, Jr. and matched by Matt Chico) with seven walks in Washington’s 2-1 win in the nation’s capital on Tuesday night.
In spite of the fact that he issued the seven free passes to the Arizona Diamondbacks, none of the D-Backs he walked scored, and the only run the left-hander allowed in five innings of work came on a solo home run in the first.
Gonzalez gave up just three hits total, struck out eight and tossed 105 pitches in those five innings, keeping it tied at 1-1 while he was in the game, and the Nats rallied in the sixth with Bryce Harper singling and scoring on an RBI double by Ryan Zimmerman that put the Nationals ahead for good, 2-1.
Three of his four walks came in the fifth, as Gonzalez loaded the bases with D-Backs with two down before striking Brandon Drury out on his 105th pitch.
“Gio walked a lot, struck out a lot, and got out of trouble a couple times,” Dusty Baker told reporters after the win.
“That was big that strikeout to Drury with the bases loaded when he was over 100 pitches and gave us a chance to win and then big hit by Harp and Zim continues to stay hot.”
Jacob Turner did the yeoman’s work to get the win, tossing four scoreless in relief, and retiring eleven in a row at one point.
Turner was pounding the zone, Baker said, and he was “... throwing strikes and then when he got behind he threw another strike.”
Gonzalez? He was effectively wild.
“He had them swinging at a lot of high fastballs,” Baker said, “they swung at quite a few balls and so did we.”
“Gio did what he could to keep us in the ballgame. We wish he could have gone deeper, but he gave us what he had.”
Gonzalez remained unbeaten after six starts this season, ending the night with a 1.64 ERA, a 4.08 FIP, 18 walks (4.23 BB/9) and 34 Ks (7.98 K/9) in 38 1⁄3 innings pitched.