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Washington Nationals’ lineup for 3rd of 4 with the Pittsburgh Pirates in PNC Park

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Washington’s Nationals try to get the bats going again after scoring just one run last night in a 4-1 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

MLB: Washington Nationals at Pittsburgh Pirates Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Going into last night’s matchup with the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Washington Nationals had scored 62 runs in the previous five games, with 16 home runs in the previous three, but they didn’t get much offense going at all in the second of four in PNC Park, taking a slim 1-0 lead into the top of the eighth inning in what ended up a 4-1 loss.

“It’s just weird how this — baseball, it’s baseball, we score 60-something runs in five games and then today we just couldn’t get any runs but one,” manager Davey Martinez said after a bullpen blowup cost the Nats the lead, but the lack of offense (6 hits total, 0 for 3 with RISP, and 8 LOB), hurt the team as well.

What role, if any, did the fact that the pitcher they’d prepared to face, Chris Archer, was out of the game after just one inning with a shoulder issue?

“We were prepared for Archie,” the manager said, “and unfortunately he got hurt, and I hope he’s okay, but then you get their bullpen, and the guys, they came in, they threw strikes, and they held us down.”

Four Pirates’ relievers combined to hold the Nationals to one run over eight innings after the starter was out of the game.

“That’s baseball, I think,” GM Mike Rizzo told 106.7 the FAN in D.C.’s Sports Junkies in his weekly spot this morning.

“We’ve been swinging the bats hot for about three months right now, and you run into an Archer, who’s a really good pitcher, and he leaves in the first, and it kind of turns into a bullpen, emergency game for them, and we can’t cobble together a bunch of runs.”

“We just couldn’t get it done,” Rizzo added, “and you know move on today’s game.”

Martinez’s takeaway from the loss to the Pirates, who’d won just four of their previous 16 before last night’s victory?

“We said this before,” Martinez told reporters, “it’s going to be a fight all the way to the end, we know that, so they’re playing good baseball. I’ve said it before, get some rest, come back tomorrow, and we’ve got [Patrick] Corbin on the mound. I just like the way we’re set up with our pitching, so let’s come back tomorrow and hopefully score one more than the other guys.”

HERE’S THE NATIONALS’ LINEUP FOR THE 3RD OF 4 WITH THE PIRATES: