Stephen Strasburg struck out 11 batters, matching his previous season high for 2018, in a six-inning, 101-pitch effort in a 4-2 win over the Marlins tonight in Miami.
Anthony Rendon extended his career-best on-base streak to a 27-straight games.
Bryce Harper took five walks in his five plate appearances.
What else? What else? Adam Eaton had another multi-hit game.
Trea Turner took a slider to the helmet on an 87 mph slider, then stole his 40th base.
Fun stuff. Nationals win, 4-2 final.
Strasburg vs the Fish: Stephen Strasburg struck out nine of the 27 batters he faced in seven innings on the mound in Citizens Bank Park last time out before tonight’s outing against the Miami Marlins in Marlins Park.
Strasburg talked after the start against the Philadelphia Phillies about working with a fastball that isn’t quite what it used to be velocity-wise since he returned from his second DL stint of the season.
“It’s kind of at the point where it’s going to take probably an offseason to get the stuff back,” Strasburg said, as quoted by MLB.com’s Jamal Collier. “Instead of trying to reach back for it and not make pitches, you just have to pitch where you’re comfortable at and not really look at the [radar] gun too much.”
Tonight in Miami, Strasburg tossed a quick, seven-pitch, seven-strike first, but after the Nats jumped out to a 2-0 lead, he gave up a leadoff home run on a 2-0 pitch to Peter O’Brien that went out to left for a solo shot in the Marlins’ second, 2-1.
Peter Piper picked a pitch down the pipe. pic.twitter.com/AeA5uKDIU7— Miami Marlins (@Marlins) September 18, 2018
Strasburg struck out three straight after the home run and a hit-by-pitch in the second, then struck out the side in the third for six straight Ks and seven strikeouts total on 39 pitches.
A single to right field by J.T. Realmuto in the home-half of the fourth, and a walk to O’Brien, put two on with no one out, but back-to-back Ks (his 8th and 9th) and a fly to right got the Nationals’ starter through a scoreless fourth.
JT Riddle and Miguel Rojas hit back-to-back singles with two out in the Marlins’ fifth, and a bloop single to right by J.T. Realmuto made it a one-run game, 3-2 Nationals, and a two-out walk to O’Brien loaded the bases in front of Brian Anderson, who went down swinging for Strasburg’s 10th K on his 90th pitch. Still 3-2 Nats.
Strasburg came back out for the sixth and picked up his 11th K on the way to an 11-pitch, 1-2-3 frame.
Stephen Strasburg’s Line: 6.0 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 11 Ks, 1 HR, 101 P, 63 S, 3/3 GO/FO.
Stephen Strasburg matched a season-high with 11 Ks tonight.— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) September 19, 2018
Alcantara vs the Nationals: Marlins’ right-hander Sandy Alcantara started the night (2-0) in three starts with a 1.42 ERA, 10 walks, 14 Ks, and a .131/.274/.246 line against in 19 IP in the majors in his second season after making his debut with the Marlins last summer. Alcantara was taking on the Nationals for the first time in his career after returning to the big leagues earlier this month and tossing seven scoreless against the Phillies and seven strong against the Mets in which he gave up two hits, three walks, and two earned runs.
Alcantara worked his way out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the first, but the Nationals put the first two batters on in the top of the second, with Matt Wieters walking and Wilmer Difo singling, before Stephen Strasburg bunted them over in front of Adam Eaton, who hit an RBI single to right that made it 1-0, and Trea Turner, who bunted towards first base to bring Difo in from third, 2-0.
Adam Eaton (one-out walk), Trea Turner (single), and Bryce Harper (third walk of the game) reached base with one out in the top of the fourth, and Anthony Rendon brought Eaton in from third with a sac fly to right that made it 3-1. Alcantara was up to 91 pitches after a 25-pitch fourth, and done for the night.
Sandy Alcantara’s Line: 4.0 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 6 BB, 3 Ks, 91 P, 46 S, 3/3 GO/FO.
Rendon Streak Watch: Anthony Rendon started the night with a 26-game on-base streak going, over which the 28-year-old Nationals’ 3B was a 36 for 104 (346/.433/.596), with 11 doubles, five homers, 15 walks, and 13 Ks in 120 plate appearances. Rendon extended that streak in his first trip to the plate, singling through the left side to load the bases with one out, though the Nats couldn’t make anything of their first opportunity of the night.
Anthony Rendon has been on base in 27 straight games.— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) September 18, 2018
That's the longest active streak in @MLB. pic.twitter.com/Cnj3RGW08U
Bryce Harper walks: With walks in each of his first three plate appearances on the night, Bryce Harper was up to 121 walks total in 2018, three shy of his previous single-season for walks set in his NL MVP season in 2015. He took his 122nd in his fourth plate appearance.
Plate appearance No. 5? You guessed it. Free pass No. 5. 123 total in 2018.
BULLPEN ACTION: Tayron Guerrero took over on the mound for the Marlins in the top of the fifth, and tossed a quick, scoreless 1-2-3 frame.
Tyler Kinley hit Trea Turner in the back of the helmet with an 87 mph slider. Turner was okay to stay in the game and then steal his 40th base in the next at bat, and after Bryce Harper walked for the fourth time in four plate appearances, Anthony Rendon drove in a run with a single to right, 4-2 Nationals.
Trea Turner has swiped 40 bags for the second consecutive season. pic.twitter.com/bsIbCWbZU4— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) September 19, 2018
Drew Rucinski tossed a scoreless, 1-2-3 seventh for the Fish.
Matt Grace came on for the bottom of the seventh inning, and got two outs before Davey Martinez started managering, bringing in Justin Miller, who got the third out. Still 4-2 Nats.
Jarlin Garcia issued walks to Victor Robles and Bryce Harper around a Trea Turner double play grounder before he was lifted in favor of Javy Guerra, who got the final out of the inning.
Greg Holland worked around a one-out single for a scoreless bottom of the eighth.
Guerra got the ninth for the Fish and kept it a two-run game with a scoreless frame.
Sean Doolittle retired the Marlins in order in the ninth to earn the save.
Final Score: 4-2 Nationals
Nationals now 77-75