Tommy Milone gave up three homers and seven runs total on 10 hits tonight as the Atlanta Braves jumped out to a big lead and held on for an 8-3 win over the Washington Nationals.
Milone vs ATL: Tommy Milone put up a 4.19 ERA, a 3.29 FIP, 24 walks (1.97 BB/9), and 113 Ks (9.27 K/9) in 109 2⁄3 innings on the mound at Triple-A Syracuse before he was called up last month. He told reporters after his second start, a seven-inning outing against Miami which saw him give up three hits and run while striking out nine, that he turned things around in Syracuse and knew he could carry it over to the majors if he got a shot.
“I had kind of been dealing with stuff over the past couple years mechanically,” the veteran left-hander said, “and it took a little bit of time to iron those out and I finally figured it out.
“The first, I’d say, ten games in Triple-A, I wasn’t very good at all, and I just kept going and going until I found it.”
Through two starts with the Nationals, who drafted Milone in the 10th Round in 2008 and traded him to the Oakland A’s in 2011, the southpaw had a 3.00 ERA, a .244/.239/.378 line against, no walks, and 15 Ks in 12 IP.
Milone retired the first five batters he faced tonight, but the next three all connected for hits with Johan Camargo and Tyler Flowers singling and scoring on a three-run blast to left field by Charlie Culberson, who gave the Braves a 3-1 lead after the Nats jumped ahead early.
Flowers homered the second time up, hitting a two-run blast out to deep left field on a 1-0 fastball from Milone, 5-1, and Ronald Acuna, Jr. hit a two-out, two-run home run to straight center, 7-1 after three and a half.
Milone gave the Nationals two more inning, but had a rough night overall...
Tommy Milone’s Line: 6.0 IP, 10 H, 7 R, 7 ER, 0 BB, 4 Ks, 3 HRs, 85 P, 62 S, 4/5 GO/FO.
Foltynewicz vs D.C.: Mike Foltynewicz gave up nine hits and four runs, three earned, in 10 1⁄3 IP in his first two starts against the Nationals this season, then the 26-year-old starter threw a complete game shutout the third time he faced the Braves’ NL East rivals, striking out 11 of the 29 batters he faced in SunTrust Park.
Start No. 4 didn’t go as well, as he gave up nine hits and four runs, all earned, in 5 2⁄3 IP on the mound in Nationals Park late last month.
Before taking the mound in D.C. again tonight, the righty was (3-3) in six starts since July 1st, with a 5.24 ERA and a .248/.315/.444 line against in 34 1⁄3 IP over that stretch.
It didn’t start well for Foltnewicz, with Adam Eaton doubling to right field, moving up on an error on a Trea Turner grounder, and scoring on an RBI single by Anthony Rendon, as the first three batters reached base, 1-0.
Foltynewicz retired 10 in a row after a two-out walk to Matt Adams loaded the bases in the first, however, and the Braves jumped out to a 7-1 lead.
Matt Wieters reached on an deflected grounder off Foltynewicz’s glove, and scored on an error by Charlie Culberson on a Trea Turner grounder, 7-2 in the fifth, and Bryce Harper hit his 28th HR of 2018 in the first at bat of the sixth, 7-3.
One and two-out singles by Michael A. Taylor and Daniel Murphy followed in the Nationals’ half of the sixth, and a walk to pinch hitter Ryan Zimmerman loaded the bases and ended Folty’s night...
Mike Foltynewicz’s Line: 5.2 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 7 Ks, 1 HR, 109 P, 72 S, 6/6 GO/FO.
Charlie who?: Charlie Culberson’s home run off Tommy Milone in the second, a three-run blast, was his third home run in three days in D.C., and his fifth home run against the Nats this season, out of eight total on the year.
Sticking with Milone: With the score 7-1 Braves, Tommy Milone was up to 74 pitches in five innings pitched when his spot in the Nationals’ lineup came up after Matt Wieters reached on a deflected ground ball to start the fifth. Davey Martinez let Milone bat, and had him lay down a sac bunt. Wieters ended up scoring when Trea Turner reached on an error, 7-2, but Twitter did not like the move by Martinez...
So down six runs, Tommy Milone bunts Matt Wieters to second.— Barry Svrluga (@barrysvrluga) August 9, 2018
More on the Nats - they’ve so much given up on their season that they just let Tommy Milone, their pitcher, bat after he gave up 7 runs in 5 innings on the mound. Presumably so they could keep him in the game to pitch.— Jonathan Allen (@jonallendc) August 9, 2018
Ump Show: Greg Gibson and Juan Soto had some words before the 19-year-old’s at bat in the sixth, and before a pitch was throw, the home plate ump tossed the Nats’ left fielder, who appeared to say something about the pitch he was punched out on in his previous AB.
First career ejection for Soto. Davey Martinez is going to have some fun questions to field after tonight’s game. Kevin Long got tossed too, but at least we got to watch Gibson call balls and strikes for the rest of the game...
Also, Ronald Acuna, Jr. is pretty good:
BULLPEN ACTION: Luke Jackson took over against Adam Eaton with the bases loaded and two out in the Nationals’ half of the sixth, and fell behind 3-1, but Eaton fouled one off and went down swinging at a full-count slider as the Nats left the bases loaded for the second time tonight.
Matt Grace took over for the Nationals in the top of the seventh, and gave up back-to-back singles by Ozzie Albies and Freddie Freeman in the first two at bats, 8-3 Braves, with Albies taking second on a passed ball and scoring on Freeman’s hit.
Dan Winkler worked around a Daniel Murphy single and a HBP on Bryce Harper for in what ended up a scoreless, 20-pitch frame.
Greg Holland made his second appearance in two nights in the eighth, retiring the side in order in a 10-pitch frame.
Sammy Solis tossed a 12-pitch, 1-2-3 top of the ninth.
Brad Brach came on for Atlanta and gave up back-to-back singles by Trea Turner and Anthony Rendon to start the frame, but Bryce Harper lined out to second and Turner couldn’t get back to second in time, double play, and Michael A. Taylor K’d swinging to end it.
Final Score: 8-3 Braves
Nationals now 58-56