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Washington Nationals’ bullpen falls short again in 11-10 loss to Atlanta Braves...

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The Washington Nationals’ bullpen struggles...again

MLB: Atlanta Braves at Washington Nationals Patrick McDermott-USA TODAY Sports

The Washington Nationals were two outs away from escaping the series opener against the Atlanta Braves with a win. However, pitcher Matt Albers couldn’t convert the save and the Nationals fell to the Braves, 11-10 on Monday evening.

Catcher Tyler Flowers hit a three-run home run to right field that spoiled Nationals’ fans’ evening.

The bullpen gave up five runs after Stephen Strasburg came out of the game in the fifth inning.

Besides the occasional bullpen issues, which have plagued the Nationals throughout the season, it was an offensive clinic for both teams. Both teams hit a combined eight home runs.

The Braves jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first inning after back-to-back home runs by Nick Markakis and Matt Kemp.

First baseman Matt Adams paved the way for the Braves offensively, hitting two home runs and driving in four runs.

Nationals’ shortstop Trea Turner jumpstarted the Nationals comeback in the first inning with a leadoff home run.

Outfielder Brian Goodwin flirted with a cycle, going 3 for 4 with a double, a home run and a single.

Bryce Harper went deep in fourth inning for his 16th home run of the season. First baseman Adam Lind had a solid night at the plate as he went 3-5 with an RBI.

Starting pitching was not a factor as Strasburg and Foltynewicz gave up 13 earned runs combined.

Strasburg allowed six runs on seven hits and tallied 10 strikeouts in five innings.

However, Foltynewicz couldn’t make it past the fourth inning as he allowed seven runs on 11 hits.

Nationals are now 38-25

HERE’S HOW IT HAPPENED:

  • The Braves drew first blood with a two-run home run to left-center by Markakis. Braves up 2-0.
  • Kemp hit a bomb to center to extend the Braves lead to 3-0.
  • SEE YOU LATER! THERE GOES THE NO-HITTER! Turner blasted a leadoff home run to put the Nationals on the board. Nationals down 3-1.
  • Wieters cut the Braves lead down to 3-2 with a two-out RBI single to right-center in the bottom of the first inning.
  • Strasburg bounced back in the second inning, striking out two of three batters.
  • SEE YOU LATER! Goodwin hit a leadoff home run in the second inning to tie the game.
  • Murphy hit a single to load the bases with one out. Rendon hit a sacrifice fly to right field to score Turner. Nationals up, 4-3.
  • Brandon Phillips hit a single after Strasburg retired six in a row. Markakis walked to put runners on first and second with one out in the top of the third inning.
  • Matt Adams took a 3-2 fastball out of the ballpark for a three-run home run. Nationals down, 6-4.
  • Goodwin doubled to left, which sent Wieters to third base. Strasburg grounded out to send Wieters home. Nationals down, 6-5.
  • Strasburg recorded three strikeouts in the fourth inning.
  • SEE YOU LATER! Harper hit a solo home run, which tied the game at 6-6 in the bottom of the fourth.
  • Adam Lind hit a RBI double to center. Nationals took a 7-6 lead and Foltynewicz came out of the game.
  • Foltynewicz’s line: 3.1 IP, 11 H, 7 ER, 2 BB, 3 SO, 3/5 GO/FO
  • Sam Freeman took the mound for the Braves and gave up an RBI single to Michael A. Taylor and Goodwin. Nationals lead 9-6.
  • Strasburg recorded his 10th strikeout after giving up two hits in the top of the fifth.
  • Jacob Turner came in to pitch the sixth inning for the Nationals.
  • Strasburg’s line: 5 IP, 7 H, 6 ER, 1 BB, 10 SO, 3/2 GO/FO
  • Taylor kept the bottom of the sixth inning alive with a double to right-center.
  • Turner pitched in the eighth and gave up a solo home run to Adams. Nationals still lead 9-7. He gave up a double to Rio Ruiz and walked Swanson before Baker decided to take him out of the game.
  • Enny Romero hit the first batter he faced and loaded the bases with one out in the seventh. Ender Inciarte hit a sacrifice fly to cut the Nationals lead to 9-8. Dusty Baker went to his bullpen again and brought in Matt Albers.
  • Albers forced Philips to ground out to keep the Nationals on top.
  • Wieters grounded into a double play to end the bottom half of the eighth.
  • Albers came into the ninth to get the save. He walked Markakis and Adams to put runners on first and second with one out.
  • Albers broke Nationals’ fans hearts when he allowed a three-run home run by Tyler Flowers with one out in the ninth inning. Braves lead, 11-9.
  • Shawn Kelley checked into the game and Rio Ruiz reached second on an error.
  • Turner hit two out RBI single to cut the deficit down to 11-10. Harper lined out to center field to end the game.
  • Nationals lost 11-10

Nationals are now 38-25