With seven runs scored between the fifth and sixth innings this afternoon, the Washington Nationals blew things wide open in the series finale with the Los Angeles Dodgers to earn themselves a sweep-avoiding, 11-4 win in the third game of three this weekend in D.C.
Stephen Strasburg dominated the Dodgers for most of his time on the mound, retiring the first 13 batters he faced before giving up a hit, and holding the visiting team to one run on two hits total in seven innings of work.
Strasburg vs LA: Stephen Strasburg took the mound this afternoon in the nation’s capital with a six-outing unbeaten streak going, over which the Nationals’ 31-year-old starter had posted a 2.39 ERA, 10 walks, 44 Ks, and a .224/.284/.315 line against in 37 2⁄3 IP.
Strasburg was taking on the Dodgers for the season time this season after he gave up four hits, two walks, and two earned runs in Dodger Stadium back in May, and he retired 13 in a row to start the outing in Nationals Park, taking a bid for a perfect game into the top of the fifth before he gave up an A.J. Pollock single.
Pollock took second on an error by Juan Soto on the hit, took third on a groundout, and scored on a two-out double to right field by Matt Beaty, 1-0, after four and a half in D.C.
Stephen Strasburg, Ridiculous 89mph Changeup. pic.twitter.com/ilH4QrJq2L— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) July 28, 2019
Strasburg was up to 65 pitches after five, and he took the mound in the sixth with a 3-1 lead courtesy of a two-run blast by Brian Dozier and an RBI single by Anthony Rendon, and threw another 1-2-3 frame, striking out the side (for 8 Ks total) in an 18-pitch inning which pushed him up to 83 pitches total after six.
With four more in the bottom of the sixth, the Nationals gave their starter a 7-1 lead to work with, and he worked around a hit batter in a scoreless 17-pitch frame which left him at 100 total on the day...
Stephen Strasburg’s Line: 7.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 9 Ks, 100 P, 62 S, 6/5 GO/FO.
Stephen Strasburg, 82mph Curveball, 96mph Two Seamer and 89mph Changeup, Overlay. pic.twitter.com/MlzUI3rhcp— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) July 28, 2019
Buehler vs D.C.: Coming off a start against the Miami Marlins in Los Angeles in which he threw seven scoreless innings on 94 pitches, Dodgers’ right-hander Walker Buehler was unbeaten in 10 starts since suffering his only loss in 19 outings in 2019 on May 18th as he took the mound this afternoon in Nationals Park.
Over the course of the 10-start unbeaten streak, the 24-year-old, three-year veteran was (5-0) with the Dodgers 8-2 in his outings, over which he’d put up a 2.79 ERA, seven walks, 85 Ks, and a .215/.235/.381 line against in 67 2⁄3 IP.
Buehler tossed four scoreless on 58 pitches to start, and took the mound in the fifth with a 1-0 lead, but a swinging bunt by Gerardo Parra and a two-run home run to right field off of Brian Dozier’s bat made it a 2-1 game in the Nationals’ favor. No. 15 for Dozier. Victor Robles tripled to right with two out and scored on an RBI single to center by Anthony Rendon, 3-1.
Howie Kendrick singled to start the Nationals’ half of the sixth, and back-to-back walks by Gerardo Parra and Brian Dozier loaded the bases in front of Stephen Strasburg, who hit a single to right to make it a 4-1 game, and an error on a throw home by Joc Pederson on a grounder to first by Trea Turner allowed two more in, 6-1, and ended Buehler’s outing...
My best friend's sister's boyfriend's brother's girlfriend heard from this guy who knows this kid who's going with the girl who saw Stephen Strasburg hit this RBI single.— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) July 28, 2019
BOTTOM 6 // #Nats 6, Dodgers 1 pic.twitter.com/O4H1077iVH
Walker Buehler’s Line: 5.1 IP, 8 H, 7 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 6 Ks, 1 HR, 100 P, 62 S, 4/1 GO/FO.
#UmpShow: MASN analyst FP Santangelo recounted in the top of the first inning today that he’d done some Googling before the game and noticed home plate ump Jeremie Rehak had a tendency to toss people with regularity, and it didn’t take long for the second-year umpire to live up to his “scouting report” as he ejected Adam Eaton when the outfielder had words on his way back to the dugout after he took ball four on a 3-1 pitch from Walker Buehler only to have it called a strike, then K’d swinging on the next offering. Davey Martinez came out of the dugout to share his thoughts and was quickly ejected as well. Way to be predictable, JR.
Adams out: Matt Adams took an 89 MPH slider off his foot in his first at bat of the game in the second, and he stayed in for two innings before leaving the lineup, replaced at first by Howie Kendrick. Adams has been on a roll lately, hitting safely in seven straight starts out of the All-Star Break, going 10 for 29 (.345 AVG) with one double, three home runs, seven RBIs, two walks, and five runs scored over that stretch. And with Ryan Zimmerman already on the IL, and Howie Kendrick, by his own admission, not an everyday player at this point, it could be a big blow if Adams misses any significant time.
BULLPEN ACTION: Yimi García took over for the Dodgers with runners on the corners and one out in a 6-1 game in the sixth and got out No. 2 and what should have been out No. 3, but a pop to short right by Anthony Rendon fell in between three Dodgers, allowing the 4th run of the inning to score and make it a 7-1 game.
Jamie Schultz came on for LA in the bottom of the seventh inning and worked around a double and a walk for a scoreless frame.
Wander Suero issued a one-out walk in the eighth, but got an inning-ending double play on a liner to second off of Joc Pederson’s bat.
Schultz got another inning of work in the bottom of the eighth and gave up a single by Trea Turner and a double by Victor Robles with one out. Anthony Rendon stepped in with Turner at third and Robles at second and drove them both in with a single to right field, 9-1, and an opposite field home run by Juan Soto in the next at bat made it 11-1.
Michael Blazek came on for the Nationals in the ninth and issued back-to-back walks to the first two batters he faced and gave up a two-out, three-run home run to right (and into the upper deck) by Corey Seager, 11-4. Blazek got the final out (after giving up another single).
Ballgame. 11-4 Nats final.
Nationals now 56-49