clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Max Scherzer strikes out 11, retires final 15 Diamondbacks’ hitters he faces in Nationals’ 3-1 win in AZ...

It was all about Max Scherzer, who struck out 11 batters, drove in the winning run, and extended his personal unbeaten streak to seven straight starts...

MLB: Washington Nationals at Arizona Diamondbacks Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Max Scherzer retired the final 15 batters he faced after a David Peralta home run in the third, and piled up 11 Ks from the 25 batters he faced in a 3-1 win for the Washington Nationals. He also drove in the eventual winning run on a two-out, ground-rule double to right field off of Arizona Diamondbacks’ starter Matt Koch in the fourth, and extended his personal unbeaten streak to seven straight starts. Not bad, Max. Not bad at all. Oh, and he also tied Tom Seaver with 70 10+ strikeout games, 10th most all-time, according to the Nationals’ PR team.

Scherzer vs D-backs: Max Scherzer took the mound tonight in Chase Field with a 1-0 lead courtesy of a Trea Turner homer in the top of the first, facing the Arizona Diamondbacks who drafted him in the 1st Round of the ‘06 Draft and traded him to Detroit in 2009 as part of a three-team deal with the New York Yankees.

Scherzer began the night with a six-start unbeaten streak going, over which he’d gone (5-0) with a 1.77 ERA, 10 walks, 63 Ks, and a .214/.290/.405 line against 40 23 innings pitched, but got into trouble right away with a single by David Peralta and a throwing error (E:1) on a bunt by Jarrod Dyson putting runners on second and third with no one out.

Three outs later, both runners were stranded there though, as the Nationals’ 33-year-old ace completed a scoreless, 15-pitch bottom of the first inning.

Ketel Marte smoked a 1-0 cutter from Scherzer, tripling to center field with one down in the D-backs’ second, but he was stranded two outs later as well. #Nails

David Peralta got the Diamondbacks on the board in the third, lining a 1-1 curveball up in the zone out to right for a solo shot. Peralta’s 7th of 2018. 1-1.

But Scherzer helped his own cause with a two-out, RBI, ground-rule double in the top of the fourth, and he set nine straight D-backs’ batters down after the homer, with 10 Ks total from 19 batters faced after he completed a quick, scoreless, bottom of the fifth.

He was up to 12-straight batters set down after a quick, nine-pitch sixth, and 15-straight outs after retiring the D-backs in order in a 10-pitch seventh in which he picked up his 11th K.

Max Scherzer’s Line: 7.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 11 Ks, 1 HR, 99 P, 72 S, 1/2 GO/FO.

Koch vs the Nationals: Acquired from New York in the August 2015 trade that sent Addison Reed to the Mets, 27-year-old right-hander Matt Koch, a 2012 3rd Round pick, debuted with the Diamondbacks in 2016, and he started tonight’s game unbeaten in five appearances and four starts this season, over which he had a 2.13 ERA, 4.42 FIP, seven walks (2.49 BB/9), 17 Ks (6.04 K/9), and a .214/.290/.405 line against in 23 13 innings pitched as a starter.

Trea Turner took Koch deep to left on the eighth pitch of the first at bat of tonight’s game, sending a solo shot over the outfield wall in Chase Field for a 1-0 lead. Turner’s 4th. Bryce Harper doubled in the next at bat, but was stranded at third.

Michael A. Taylor doubled to left on a first-pitch cutter in the second, connecting for his 9th two-base hit of the season, and took third on a Pedro Severino groundout, but was stranded two outs later.

A one-out hit-by-pitch on Andrew Stevenson and two-out single by Pedro Severino set Max Scherzer up with an RBI opportunity the Nationals’ starter cashed in, lining a fastball from Koch to right for a ground-rule, RBI double that put the visitors back on top, 2-1, after David Peralta had tied it up with a solo home run in the bottom of the third.

Koch kept it there through the seventh, but Anthony Rendon took a 2-2 cutter for a ride to center, sending a one-out solo shot over the yellow line for his 3rd of 2018, and a 3-1 lead.

Matt Koch’s Line: 8.0 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 3 Ks, 2 HRs, 97 P, 67 S, 8/7 GO/FO.

Back on Top: Turner started the night on quite a run over his last 15 games going back to his five-hit game on April 25th. He was 19 for 55 (.345 AVG) with three doubles, two home runs, nine RBIs, and 12 runs scored over that stretch.

Trea Turner was back in the leadoff spot tonight, and in his first at bat of the game, the 24-year-old Nationals’ shortstop hit a 3-2 fastball from Matt Koch out to left field on a line for his 4th home run of the season and a 1-0 lead. That was Turner’s only hit in four at bats.

BULLPEN ACTION: Brandon Kintzler took over for the Nationals in the bottom of the eighth, after Anthony Rendon’s third HR of the season gave Washington a 3-1 lead, and retired the side in order, with the 10-pitch frame giving the Nats’ pitchers a combined 18-straight outs.

Sean Doolittle gave up a one-out single in the bottom of the ninth that ended the streak of retired D-backs’ batters at 19 in a row, but he stranded the only runner to reach base in a 17-pitch inning to earn save No. 8 in eight opportunities this season. Ballgame.

Final Score: 3-1 Nationals

Nationals now 22-18