In the last two games of what anonymous sources around the baseball world were calling a must-win series, the Washington Nationals scored one run in 19 innings, dropping the third and fourth games against the Marlins in Miami after winning the first two.
What does it mean for the Nats going into the non-waiver deadline? We’ll see over the next two days.
This afternoon, it was a 5-0 loss to the Fish, as the Nats were shut out for the 11th time this season, and the 10th time since June 1st.
Hellboy vs Miami: Jeremy Hellickson was dealing with flu-like symptoms when he took on the Marlins in the nation’s capital earlier this month, and it showed on the mound. He said afterwards that he didn’t really remember much of the outing, which was probably a good thing since he got knocked around a bit, giving up nine hits and nine runs (eight earned).
He went just four innings that night, and his teammates picked him up, rallying from a 9-0 deficit in what ended up a 14-12 win.
Hellickson was unbeaten in three starts between that outing and this afternoon’s in Miami, putting up a 2.25 ERA and a .193/.270/.298 line against in 16 IP.
Hellickson fell behind early, when Miguel Rojas, Magnerius Sierra, and the opposing pitcher, Jose Urena connected for back-to-back-to-back two-out singles in the bottom of the second inning, with Urena’s RBI hit driving in the game’s first run, 1-0.
Martin Prado hit a 90 mph 1-2 fastball to center and out of Bryce Harper’s reach for a two-out RBI double in the third, that gave the Marlins a 2-0 lead.
Hellickson pitches a quick 1-2-3 inning.— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) July 29, 2018
After 4, we trail 2-0. pic.twitter.com/VEo0EZsXVX
Hellickson gave up back-to-back, one-out singles in the fifth, and Prado got him again with two out, lining a two-out RBI single through the right side to make it 3-0 Marlins. That was it for Hellickson.
Jeremy Hellickson’s Line: 4.2 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 4 Ks, 81 P, 60 S, 3/4 GO/FO.
Urena vs the Nationals: Jose Urena gave up five hits, a walk, and four earned runs in six innings on the mound against the Nationals in Marlins Park back in late May.
He took on Washington again today in Miami looking to snap a five-start winless streak, over which he’d posted a 6.29 ERA and a .292/.370/.479 line against in 24 1⁄3 IP.
Urena tossed three scoreless on 52 pitches to start this afternoon’s game, and drove in the first run for the Fish with a two-out RBI single in the bottom of the second, 1-0.
The Marlins’ righty took the mound in the sixth at 81 pitches, with a 5-0 lead, after the home team added four runs in the bottom of the fifth, and retired the Nationals in order on just 15 pitches, wrapping his day up after six scoreless on 96 pitches.
Jose Urena’s Line: 6.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 4 BB, 5 Ks, 96 P, 55 S, 5/3 GO/FO.
Shut out again?: The Nationals needed a run in the top of the ninth to avoid a shutout loss last night in Miami, and Marlins’ right-hander Jose Urena held Washington’s hitters to just one hit in six scoreless innings on the mound this afternoon.
Today’s shutout loss was the Nationals’ 11th of the season, and the 10th since June 1st.
BULLPEN ACTION: Matt Grace took over with runners on the corners and two out in the fifth inning, with the Nationals down 3-0, and got a grounder to second out of JT Riddle which should have been out No. 3, but Daniel Murphy misplayed it on the backhand and threw late to first as J.T. Realmuto scored the fourth run of the game for Miami, 4-0.
Miguel Rojas went way down in the zone for a two-strike slider from Grace and lined it to left field for an RBI double and a 5-0 lead.
.@Marlins Miguel Rojas hits his 11th double of the season scoring Martin Prado to make it 5-0 over the Nationals. #JuntosMiami Make sure to watch all of the action on FOX Sports Florida. pic.twitter.com/Am8WOU8woa— FOX Sports Florida (@FOXSportsFL) July 29, 2018
Grace needed just five pitches in a 1-2-3 bottom of the sixth.
Adam Conley took over for Miami in the top of the seventh inning and retired the side in order in an 11-pitch frame.
Justin Miller needed 12 pitches in a 1-2-3 bottom of the seventh.
Brad Ziegler retired the Nationals in order in a 13-pitch eighth that gave the Marlins 14 outs in a row going back to Juan Soto’s leadoff walk in the fourth.
Sammy Solis tossed a quick, scoreless bottom of the eighth, on nine pitches.
Drew Steckenrider walked Bryce Harper with one out in the ninth, and gave up a single to left by Matt Adams, but struck out Juan Soto and got a liner to second base out of Daniel Murphy to end it.
Final Score: 5-0 Marlins
Nationals now 52-53