Alex Meyer, one of three Washington Nationals’ 2011 1st Round picks, took a no-hit bid against his former organization into the sixth tonight in Anaheim, and he earned a “W” over the NL East leaders with an impressive outing in a 7-0 win for the Angels in Angel Stadium.
Meyer, 27, was perfect through 4 2⁄3 innings before fellow ‘11 Nationals’ first-rounder Anthony Rendon drew a two-out walk, and the other Nats’ 2011 1st Round pick, Brian Goodwin, broke up the right-hander’s no-hitter with a two-out double in the sixth.
Gio Gonzalez gave up two runs in the first, on an RBI single by Albert Pujols and a sac fly by Andrelton Simmons, and C.J. Cron made the Nats’ lefty pay for a leadoff walk to Pujols in the sixth, when the Angels’ first baseman hit a two-run bomb to left-center to make it a 4-0 game.
Yunel Escobar drove in Ben Revere with Joe Blanton on the mound in the seventh, 5-0, and Mike Trout hit his second home run in two-days in the next at bat, 7-0.
Meyer ended up going seven innings, limiting the Nationals to just one walk and one hit.
Nationals now 57-37
HERE’S HOW IT HAPPENED:
• Albert Pujols started the scoring tonight with an RBI single through the left side with the runners on the move after Gio Gonzalez gave up a leadoff single by Yunel Escobar, and a walk to Mike Trout, who fell behind 0-2 before working the count full and taking a free pass, 1-0 Angels. Trout scored on a sac fly by Andrelton Simmons, 2-0.
• Former Nationals’ draft pick Alex Meyer (1st Round, 2011) tossed three scoreless and hitless to start, on 36 pitches, striking out four of the first nine batters he faced.
• We dug up brief scouting reports on Meyer from the 2011 Draft. Here’s what Mike Rizzo and Kris Kline had to say about the 23rd overall pick of that June’s Draft class:
"He's a big power right-handed pitcher," Rizzo said on the night of the 2011 Draft.
"He's got three plus pitches in the future. He's got two present plus pitches."
The Nats' scouting director, Kris Kline, told reporters that Meyer had a chance of becoming a "top-of-the-rotation starter," or, "worst-case scenario, you've got a [Daniel] Bard-type reliever with a better slider and somebody that you bring in at the back of your bullpen that can dominate."
• Meyer got up to 14-straight batters set down before he issued a 2-out walk to fellow 2011 1st Round pick Anthony Rendon in the fifth, ending his bid for perfection.
Rendon was stranded, however, when Matt Wieters popped out to left to end Meyer’s fifth hitless inning.
• Gio Gonzalez was up to seven-straight set down and 11 of 12 Angels’ batters retired after a 14-pitch, 1-2-3 fifth.
• Meyer got Stephen Drew to ground weakly to short, and got Chris Heisey swinging with a filthy 1-2 curve for the first two outs of the sixth, but Brian Goodwin broke up his no-hit bid with a double by first base on a 2-0 fastball. Ryan Raburn went down swinging at a 1-2 fastball, however, as Meyer kept his shutout bid in tact.
• Gonzalez walked Albert Pujols to start the Angels’ sixth and gave up a two-run blast on a 1-2 changeup to C.J. Cron, 4-0 LAA.
Gio Gonzalez’s Line: 5.2 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 3 Ks, 1 HR, 107 P, 61 S, 7/6 GO/FO.
• Joe Blanton took over with two on and two out in the Angels’ sixth, and threw a 2-2 slider by Cliff Penning to end the inning. 4-0 Los Angeles.
• Meyer came back out for the seventh and retired the Nationals in order in a 15-pitch frame that left him at 88 pitches after seven scoreless.
• Ben Revere singled to start the Angels’ seventh, stole second, took third on a E:2 on the throw, and scored on an RBI single by Yunel Escobar. Mike Trout followed with a two-run homer on a 2-2 fastball from Blanton to put LA up 7-0 on the Nats.
• Alex Meyer’s Line: 7.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 Ks, 88 P, 52 S, 8/3 GO/FO.
• David Hernandez tossed a long-ish, 1-2-3 eighth to keep it 7-0 LAA, and after Enny Romero’s scoreless bottom of the inning, Jose Alvarez came on to end it with a quick, scoreless ninth. Final Score: 7-0 LAA.
NATIONALS PREGAME NOTES:
- With Washington’s win last night, the Nationals improved to 5-8 in 13 games against the LA Angels since baseball returned to D.C. in 2005.
- With last night’s win, the Nationals have six straight and eight of ten overall, and a win tonight would match their longest winning streak of the season, when they won seven in a row from April 16-23.
- Washington’s 31-17 road record is the second-best in the majors this season, behind only the Houston Astros (33-11).
- Anthony Rendon started the night with a 12-game hitting streak going, over which he’s 20 for 42 (.476 AVG) with five doubles and four home runs over that stretch.
- Rendon also started the night leading the NL in fWAR (5.0), behind only the New York Yankees’ Aaron Judge (5.4 fWAR) for the highest mark in the majors.
- In a Rendon-themed “Fun with Arbitrary End Points” update: Anthony Rendon is 37 for 88 with nine doubles, nine home runs, 18 walks, and 21 runs scored... since June 15th.
- Washington’s offense started the night leading the NL in AVG (.280), OBP (.347), SLG (.477), hits (916), extra-base hits (346), runs (525), doubles (189), and they’re second in home runs, with 141 so far this season.
Nationals now 57-37