Though they fell behind 2-0 in the top of the first on Saturday afternoon, the Washington Nationals put up three runs in the bottom of the first inning, with Trea Turner tripling and scoring on a sac fly by Adam Eaton before Juan Soto and Matt Adams connected on back-to-back, two-out homers off of Arizona Diamondbacks’ starter Taylor Clarke to make it 3-2 Nats after one.
Clarke and the D-backs’ bullpen held the Nationals off the board after the first, however, and the visitors scored eight unanswered runs to take the third of four in the nation’s capital.
“The first inning we wanted to get the ball up,” Nats’ skipper Davey Martinez said when he was asked about hit hitters’ approach after the first inning in the 10-3 loss.
“We got some balls up, and then after that first inning, [Clarke] kind of settled down a little, started throwing a better breaking ball, keeping the ball down.
“I mean we hit some balls down, but couldn’t really get nothing going.”
The loss left the Nationals six games under .500 after 70 games, 8.5 back in the NL East with one more to play against the D-backs.
Is there a sense of urgency going into the finale with the Diamondbacks?
“You always want to win, especially win the series. Tomorrow is no different,” Martinez said.
“Like I say every day, we come back tomorrow and go 1-0, can’t do nothing about today.
“Today’s over, let’s try to come back tomorrow and try to play winning baseball from the first inning on. Guys came out with a lot of energy today, and they played.”
“They score, we come back and score, and then they come back and score,” he continued, “so it was just one of those days, but like I said before, we’ve been playing good, so let’s play with a lot of energy, we’re playing good, so let’s just win every inning, every play of every game.”
Aníbal Sánchez, who’s unbeaten in his last three starts, (2-0 with a 1.04 ERA, three walks, 15 Ks, and a stingy .153/.194/.254 line against in 17 1⁄3 innings), toes the rubber in today’s finale.