Tanner Roark gave up two long balls and an RBI single in six innings of work, but the Washington Nationals rallied from a 3-1 deficit to take the series opener in D.C. with the Philadelphia Phillies by a final score of 4-3.
Trea Turner came up with the big hit, connecting for a bases-loaded, two-run single as part of a three-run seventh as the Nats took the lead for good.
Michael A. Taylor made another leaping catch at the wall, pulling a potential home run ball down in the top of the seventh.
Victor Robles made his MLB debut in the bottom of the seventh inning, lining out to right.
After a long trip to Milwaukee and Miami, and a late night flight home, the Nationals took the first of four with the Phillies in the nation’s capital with the three-headed monster at the back of the bullpen locking down Washington’s 86th win of the season.
Nationals now 86-54
HERE’S HOW IT HAPPENED:
• Michael A. Taylor reached base on an error on a dribbler toward first, stole second base (No. 13), and scored on a two-out single to left field by Alejandro De Aza to give the Nationals a 1-0 lead early in the series opener with the Phillies.
• Tanner Roark left a 1-1 curve up for Philly backstop Jorge Alfaro, who hit a solo shot out to left-center to tie things up at 1-1 one at bat into the second. Alfaro’s 2nd, and just the third home run on Roark’s curveball this season.
• Tommy Joseph hit the second home run of the night off Roark on a 2-0 fastball belt-high inside that stayed just inside the left field foul pole for the Philly first baseman’s 21st home run of the season and a 2-1 Phillies’ lead.
• Adam Lind singled to right with one out in the Nats’ fourth and Michael A. Taylor hit an opposite field double to right-center on a 2-2 fastball from Philly righty Aaron Nola, but Matt Wieters K’d swinging on three consecutive curves, and after an intentional walk to Alejandro De Aza, Roark K’d looking to leave’em loaded.
• Cesar Hernandez hit a one-out double to left on a 1-1 fastball from Roark in the fifth and scored on an RBI single by Freddy Galvis to give the Phillies a 3-1 lead.
• Unstoppable Adam Lind was 2 for 3 on the night after a leadoff single in the bottom of the sixth, and he moved up to second base on a wild pitch with Michael A. Taylor at the plate, took third base on a passed ball, and scored on an RBI double to left-center by Matt Wieters, 3-2. That was it for Aaron Nola.
Adam Morgan took over on the mound for the Phillies. Howie Kendrick walked to put two on with one out and end Tanner Roark’s night, as Dusty Baker went to his bench for pinch hitter Rafael Bautista, who hit a line drive to center for a single that loaded them up in front of Trea Turner, who sent a bouncer up the middle for a two-run hit that made it 4-3 Nationals.
• Aaron Nola’s Line: 5.1 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 8 Ks, 106 P, 70 S, 6/1 GO/FO.
• Tanner Roark’s Line: 6.0 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 6 Ks, 100 P, 64 S, 4/3 GO/FO.
• Michael A. Taylor made a leaping catch at the wall in center to take at least an extra-base hit away from Andres Blanco with Brandon Kintzler on the mound for the Nats in the seventh. Kintzler retired the side in order in a 12-pitch frame.
• Victor Robles made his MLB debut in a pinch hit appearances in the bottom of the seventh, lining out to right and receiving a nice ovation from the crowd in D.C.
• Ryan Madson worked around a two-out single in a 13-pitch eighth.
• Sean Doolittle took the mound in the top of the ninth looking for save No. 16 in 16 opportunities with the Nationals and locked down the Nationals’ 86th win with a 16-pitch frame. Ballgame. Final Score: 4-3 Nationals.
NATIONALS PREGAME NOTES:
- Philadelphia starts the four-game set in D.C. with a 123-111 advantage in the all-time series with Washington, but the Natinals are 72-52 against the Phillies since 2011.
- Washington starts this week’s series with a 7-5 record against Philadelphia this season, with a 4-2 record against the Phillies in Nationals Park.
- Washington’s 85-54 record is the third-best in the majors, and second-best in the NL, behind only the Houston Astros (86-53) and Los Angeles Dodgers (92-47).
- Washington’s offense started the series with the Phillies leading the NL in SLG (.455), runs scored (726), and OPS (.790), and the Nationals are ranked second in AVG (.269) and extra-base hits (487).
- Washington is the only club in the majors with four plays that have at least 20 HRs and 80 RBIs (Ryan Zimmerman - 31 HRs, 93 RBIs), Bryce Harper (29 HRs, 87 RBIs), Anthony Rendon (23 HRs, 91 RBIs), and Daniel Murphy (22 HRs, 88 RBIs).
- The Phillies have seven players with 10 or more home runs this season: Tommy Joseph (20), Maikel Franco (18), Aaron Altherr (16), Cameron Rupp (14), Odubel Herrera (12), Rhys Hoskins (12), and Freddy Galvis (11).
- Washington’s starters rank first among major league pitching staffs with a .229 BAA, .382 SGL, rank second in OBP (.297), and ERA (3.41) and rank third in Ks (868).
- Tanner Roark started the night (3-0) with a 1.57 ERA in his last eight starts and 51 2⁄3 IP against the Phillies.
Nationals now 86-54