After giving up six runs in six innings this afternoon, Tanner Roark had allowed 24 runs, 21 earned, in his last four starts and 19 2⁄3 innings pitched (9.61 ERA).
Roark settled in, with four scoreless frames after he gave up six in the first two, and he threw just 61 pitches between the third and sixth, after needing 55 to get through the second.
Michael A. Taylor hit his third homer in of the weekend to get the Nats on the board in the fifth, but veteran right-hander Scott Feldman held the Nationals to just two runs in seven innings as the Reds avoided a sweep with what was just their second win in the last 15 games on the road.
Nationals now 45-30
HERE’S HOW IT HAPPENED:
• Tanner Roark struggled last time out, against the Marlins in Miami, lasting just 2 2⁄3 innings, and he was behind early this afternoon after Billy Hamilton doubled to right-center on the second pitch of the game, and scored on a Scooter Gennett single to short left field, 1-0.
Gennett scored in the next at bat when Joey Votto sent a single to right and the throw in to third by Bryce Harper hit Gennett on the way to the bag and shot into foul territory, 2-0. Votto scored from third one out later on a force at second, 3-0.
Tucker Barnhart’s two-out, two-run double to right made it 5-0, and Roark was up to 40 pitches after the opening frame.
• Brian Goodwin and Bryce Harper hit back-to-back, one-out singles off Reds’ righty Scott Feldman in the Nationals’ half of the first, and both runners advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch to Anthony Rendon with two down, but Rendon K’d looking as the Nats failed to respond in the first.
• Scooter Gennett made it a 6-0 game with a solo shot to right off Roark in the top of the second, taking a 2-2 slider for a ride for his 11th home run of the season.
• Michael A. Taylor’s third home run in the last two games got the Nationals on the board in the fourth. Taylor’s 11th was a two-run blast on a 2-0 cutter from Feldman with Adam Lind on, and it made it a 6-2 game in the Reds’ favor.
• Brian Goodwin dropped a pop into short left for a leadoff single in the Nats’ fifth, but he was thrown out at home trying to score on a Bryce Harper double to right field. Not third base coach Bob Henley’s finest moment on the send. Two outs later, Harper was stranded at second. Still 6-2 Reds.
• Tanner Roark’s Line: 6.0 IP, 9 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 2 BB, 7 Ks, 1 HR, 116 P, 79 S, 4/4 GO/FO.
• Matt Grace took over on the mound and tossed a scoreless, 17-pitch top of the seventh. Scott Feldman’s scoreless, 16-pitch seventh left him at 119 total.
• Scott Feldman’s Line: 7.0 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 Ks, 1 HR, 119 P, 72 S, 9/5 GO/FO.
• Joe Blanton tossed a quick, eight-pitch, 1-2-3 eighth. No really.
• Bryce Harper was 3 for 3 with a walk after he singled to center off Tony Cingrani to start the bottom of the eighth, but Cingrani retired Daniel Murphy, and Raisel Iglesias came on for the second and third outs.
• Blanton and Oliver Perez combined for a scoreless top of the ninth, but Iglesias came back out for a 1-2-3 ninth to end it. Final Score: 6-2 Reds.
NATIONALS PREGAME NOTES:
- With last night’s win, Washington improved to 39-42 in their all-time series with Cincinnati, and the Nationals are now 19-16 against the Reds since 2012.
- The losses in the first two of three in D.C. left the Reds 1-4 on their current road trip, and 1-10 on their last two road trips, with losses in their last 13 of 14 on the road.
- Michael A. Taylor has a .293 AVG, 14 doubles, two triples, 10 HRs, nine walks, and seven steals... in 48 games since taking over in center for Adam Eaton.
- In today’s Nationals-themed “Fun with Arbitrary End Points” segment: Daniel Murphy his 38 for 96 (.396 AVG) with none doubles, a triple, four home runs, 21 RBIs, eight walks and 19 runs scored... in his last 23 games before today’s.
- Washington’s offense started the day leading the NL in AVG (.279), OBP (.344), SLG (.479), home runs (116), hits (729), extra-base hits (279), run scored (422), and RBIs (413).
- Washington’s starters began the day leading the majors in Ks (471) and ranked second in the NL In WHIP (1.21), BAA (.239), and opponents’ SLG (.392).
- Nats’ starter Tanner Roark began the day (1-1) with a 3.41 ERA in 29 IP against the Reds in his career.
Nationals now 45-30