The only run Patrick Corbin allowed through five innings last night, (five innings which he completed on 78 total pitches), came on his 42nd pitch of the game, a 64 MPH first-pitch curve to Rhys Hoskins, which the Phillies’ slugger hit out to left-center for a solo home run that tied things up at 1-1 in the third.
Corbin held the Philadelphia’s hitters to the one run through six innings, with the Nationals up 2-1, and the lefty was up to 94 pitches when he came back out for the seventh and gave up a line drive to left field off Didi Gregorius’s bat that Juan Soto lunged for but didn’t catch, allowing Gregorius to speed to third base with a leadoff triple as the Nats’ left fielder chased the ball down.
Will Harris took over at that point, and gave up an RBI single on the first pitch he threw to Alec Bohm, 2-2, and after Victor Robles and Adam Eaton collided going for a ball in right-center field, putting two runners on with one out, the Phillies added a run to go up 3-2 on an RBI single by Bryce Harper.
Patrick Corbin’s Line: 6.0 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 3 Ks, 1 HR, 96 P, 64 S, 6/4 GO/FO.
“Pat, man, he threw the ball really well,” manager Davey Martinez said after the Nationals’ second straight loss to the Phillies.
“He had 94 pitches, we wanted him to get one more out with Gregorius,” the manager said of sending Corbin back out for the seventh, “and it just didn’t happen.”
“I felt pretty good out there,” Corbin told reporters in his own post-game Zoom call.
“I’d like to have finished that seventh inning, make a better pitch to Didi, tried going fastball in there, but I feel each time I’m out there my arm is feeling better and better.”
Patrick Corbin, Filthy 82mph Slider. pic.twitter.com/6AfzSZm1YG— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) August 27, 2020
“Feel like I’m locating better,” he added, “and just more consistent with all my pitches. Just have to keep working out, keep doing all my things in-between, throwing bullpens, things like that to finish this season strong.”
“He’s been pitching well,” Martinez said. “He kept us in the game. He had  pitches there, but we thought that after the fifth inning, he was letting it all out. We asked him to try to go out and get one more hitter, because he was a left-handed hitter, we thought it was a great matchup, but he did great.”
The curve to Hoskins that ended up getting smoked, Corbin acknowledged that it wasn’t his best.
“I think it was like 64 MPH, usually I locate that a lot better, it was just middle-middle,” the left-hander said.
“It looked like he almost sat back on it and then pulled the trigger, so it was kind of just one of those things where I thought he was out front a little bit and then just let it go.
“He’s a big strong guy that if you do something like that where you throw something in there slow trying to steal a strike he can do some damage to you.”
It was Corbin’s first outing against the Phillies this season, but, he noted, he’s not exactly a stranger to the Nationals’ NL East rivals, and they battled him throughout his start.
“They’ve got some veterans over there in their lineup,” Corbin explained.
“They know what I have and I’d like to try to pitch to some of their weaknesses and things like that, some of my strengths.
“They’ve got a great lineup over there, I don’t know how well they’ve been swinging as of late, but they did have some tough at bats and longer at bats today. I had a couple walks, which is a little frustrating, so just try to continue to build off this and get better.”