Stephen Strasburg started the night (3-0) in three starts against the Miami Marlins this year, with a 1.61 ERA in 22 1⁄3 IP, and the Washington Nationals’ right-hander had an 11-start win streak going against the Fish, which went back to 2015, over which he’d posted a 1.46 ERA in 80 1⁄3 innings.
After giving up back-to-back, one-out singles in the top of the first, the 2009 No. 1 overall pick retired 22-straight Marlins’ batters to get through eight scoreless innings with just two hits allowed, and 14 Ks collected (from 25 batters), as the Nats jumped out to a 6-0 lead, before Anthony Rendon made his 7-0 with his second home run of the game in the bottom of the eighth.
Oh, and pitcher wins are like, whatever, but Strasburg won his career-high 16th.
Strasburg vs the Fish: In three outings against the Marlins before tonight’s, Nationals’ right-hander Stephen Strasburg was (3-0) with a 1.61 ERA, four walks, 29 Ks, and a .143/.205/.182 line against in 22 1⁄3 IP, with his last outing against Miami a 14-strikeout appearance in which he tossed 7 1⁄3 scoreless on 110 pitches.
Stephen Strasburg, Disgusting 83mph Curveball. pic.twitter.com/2wn9dkosE6— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) September 1, 2019
After struggling at the start of the month (8.31 ERA in 3 starts and 17 1⁄3 IP), the Nationals’ 31-year-old starter was finishing August strong, with two earned runs allowed total in 13 IP over his previous two outings before he took on the Fish for the fourth time this season tonight in the nation’s capital.
Strasburg gave up back-to-back, one-out singles in the opening frame, but got a grounder back to the mound to start an inning-ending 1-6-3, then proceeded to retire 10 in a row, to get through four scoreless on 51 pitches, with a 6-0 lead.
A nine-pitch, 1-2-3 fifth gave him 13-straight outs, and five scoreless on 60 pitches total (48 strikes), and he came back out for the sixth and set down three more, 16 in a row and a total of six scoreless innings on 76 pitches (58 strikes), with 10 Ks from 19 batters faced.
Stephen Strasburg, 95mph Fastball, 81mph Curveball and 89mph Changeup (3 Pitch K), Overlay.— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) September 1, 2019
Strasburg’s 17-pitch, 1-2-3 seventh left him at 89 pitches, with 19-straight outs, with two Ks for 12 total from 22 batters.
Strasburg came back out in the eighth and set down three more, striking out two more for 14 Ks (from 25 batters) and 22-straight outs to end his night.
Stephen Strasburg’s Line: 8.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 14 Ks, 107 P, 81 S, 6/1 GO/FO.
López vs the Nats: Marlins’ righty Pablo López gave up seven hits and four runs in 3 2⁄3 IP in the nation’s capital when he faced the Nationals for the first time in 2019 back on May 24th, in what ended up a 12-10 loss.
Four starts later, the 23-year-old starter ended up on the Injured List with a right shoulder strain, and he didn’t return to the Marlins’ rotation until last week (8/26).
“It’s been forever since I’ve been on this mound. I’m real excited,” López said before he got back into a game for the Fish, as quoted by Miami Herald writer Jordan McPherson.
“I’ve been working on some things, so it feels even longer. Every day, day in and day out being in rehab, just working on things while trying to get healthy. It’s a process that felt longer than it actually has been.”
López gave up five hits and four runs in 5 IP against the Reds in his return, and took on the Nationals for the second time in D.C. tonight, and fell behind early with Anthony Rendon and Juan Soto connecting for back-to-back, two-out blasts, both to left, and each for their 30th home runs of 2019. 2-0 Nationals.
López hit Kurt Suzuki in the first at bat of the Nats’ second, then threw a wild pitch that put the catcher at second before he took third on a single to left by Brian Dozier and scored on an RBI single by Stephen Strasburg, 3-0.
Anthony Rendon got hit with a 1-2 curve with one down in the third, and he scored from first on an RBI double to right field by Juan Soto, 4-0. No. 24 for Soto (2 for 2, 2B, HR). A two-run home run by Kurt Suzuki followed one out later and it was a 6-0 game after three and López was done for the night...
Pablo López’s Line: 3.0 IP, 6 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 3 HRs, 63 P, 44 S, 2/0 GO/FO.
Rend-on-base & Victor ROBPles: Anthony Rendon started the second of three with the Fish in D.C. with a 15-game on-base streak going, over which the 29-year-old third baseman was 27 for 63 (.429/.486/.730) with seven doubles, four home runs, and eight walks in 72 PAs.
Rendon extended his streak early, hitting a 94 MPH 3-2 fastball out to left on a line in his first at bat, for his 30th home run of the season and a 16-game on-base streak.
Victor Robles extended his on-base base streak to 17-straight games last night, and the 21-year-old outfielder was 23 for 67 over that stretch (.343/.408/.537) with seven doubles, two home runs, and six walks in the previous 17 games before tonight’s matchup with the Fish.
A leadoff double in the fourth tonight gave the outfielder an 18-game on-base streak (and 26 two-base hits on the season).
BULLPEN ACTION: Wei-Yin Chen gave up a leadoff double by Victor Robles in the bottom of the fourth, and Stephen Strasburg bunted the Nats’ center fielder over, but he was left there at the end of the inning.
Chen retired the Nationals in order in the fifth and sixth innings, keeping it at a 6-0 Nats’ lead, and set down three more in the seventh, for 12-straight outs.
Anthony Rendon hit his second home run of the night (and 31st of the season) off Marlins’ lefty Adam Conley in the bottom of the eighth, 7-0.
Tanner Rainey came on to close it out in the ninth and worked around a two-out walk (which ended the Nationals’ streak of retired Marlins at 24 in a row) to close out the ninth.
Final Score: 7-0 Nationals.
Nationals now 76-58