Washington Nationals’ manager Davey Martinez told reporters before last night’s series opener with the the Milwaukee Brewers that he hoped whatever momentum the team’s victory over the Atlanta Braves on Sunday gave them would carry over to Miller Park.
“It was fun to watch those guys play last night,” Martinez said, “and we’ve just got to keep it going now, defense, baserunning, putting the ball in play with runners in scoring positions, just moving the ball in general. It was fun.”
Daniel Murphy’s leadoff home run in the second gave the Nationals an early advantage, but righty Jhoulys Chacin kept the Nats in check after that, retiring ten straight after Anthony Rendon reached on an error in the third inning before a hit-by-pitch on Ryan Zimmerman with two out in the sixth ended his outing.
“We started off swinging the bat really well,” Martinez said, after what ended up a 6-1 loss.
“We hit some line drives, and then Chacin settled in, and we didn’t get any more hits. We left seven guys on base, but couldn’t get that big hit.”
The Nationals went 0 for 5 with runners in scoring position and eight left on base on the night, and after the Brewers tied things up in the bottom of the second they scored two more in the fourth and three in the sixth as they ran away with the first of three.
To add to Martinez’s concerns, Trea Turner failed to run out a botched bunt attempt in the fourth inning, prompting the first-year manager to suggest in his post game interview that he might give his shortstop a night off in the second game of the series.
“In that moment, we’re trying to win a ballgame, so there’s a good chance he won’t play tomorrow,” Martinez explained.
When the lineup was released, Turner’s name was not listed. Wilmer Difo gets a start at short instead of the everyday shortstop...
HERE’S THE NATIONALS’ LINEUP FOR THE 2ND OF 3 WITH THE BREWERS:
NOTE: Lineup updated with Bryce Harper scratched. Sure there will be a reason given when Davey Martinez talks to reporters shortly.