With a big win on Friday, and a disappointing loss in the second of three with Arizona’s D-backs on Saturday, Washington Nationals’ skipper Davey Martinez was just looking for the series win in today’s finale in Chase Field.
“Just go out there and go 1-0 today and try to win the series,” he said before the start of the third game. “We’ve been swinging the bats well, so hopefully [Erick] Fedde gives us a good five or six innings, and we’ll go from there.”
Fedde gave the Nationals seven scoreless on the mound, and the Nats’ bats finally provided some support with Yadiel Hernández homering in a pinch hit appearance to lead off the top of the eighth, and Victor Robles doubling and scoring on a Trea Turner double to make it 2-0 in the visitor’s favor, before Kyle Schwarber drove in a run later in the inning, 3-0.
Nationals take 2 of 3 from the D-backs in the desert. Next stop, Wrigley Field...
Fedde vs the D-backs: In back-to-back losses in his last two outings, Erick Fedde gave up 10 hits, five walks, and eight earned runs, holding hitters to a combined .270/.349/.568 line with seven Ks from 45 batters faced.
Last time out before this afternoon’s start against the D-backs, the 28-year-old, 2014 first round pick battled through a tough outing, giving up five hits, three walks and three runs, all earned, in five innings, throwing 87 pitches before manager Davey Martinez pulled the plug.
The skipper did, however, say that Fedde showed some moxy by competing in a start in which he clearly wasn’t at his best.
“I told him today, I said, ‘To me that’s a testament to how good your stuff is. That you can be a little bit erratic and not throw a lot of strikes, but yet get outs and keep us in the ballgame, so just learn by that.”
In start No. 8 of his 2021 campaign, Fedde worked around three hits and one walk in five scoreless innings, which he completed on 76 pitches, and when he returned to the hill in the sixth, and set the side down in order in a 10-pitch frame he was up to [checks math] 86 pitches overall, with 10-straight D-backs’ hitters set down going back to a two-out hit in the third.
Fedde walked the first batter he faced in the bottom of the seventh, but erased the runner with a 4-6-3 DP in the next AB, and a groundout to short ended an 11-pitch frame that left him at 97 overall on the afternoon in what was still a 0-0 game when he left the mound...
Erick Fedde’s Line: 7.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 4 Ks, 97 P, 60 S, 11/2 GO/FO.
Weaver vs Washington: Luke Weaver gave up six hits and six runs in four innings against the Miami Marlins on May 5th, but he bounced back and tossed six scoreless against the Fish when he faced them in the second of back-to-back outings five days later, giving up just four hits.
“I saw an aggressive fastball from the first one that he threw,” D-backs’ manager Torey Lovullo said after that outing, as quoted on MLB.com.
“And I saw some intensity from the first pitch of the game on, and I could tell this had the potential to be a little bit different, and it was.”
“You got to have your revenge, right?” Weaver told reporters. “You’ve got to be motivated in a way where, you know, ‘Yeah, you got me, but it’s never going to happen again.’”
Going up against the Nationals this afternoon, Weaver tossed four scoreless on 68 pitches, giving up just one hit and two walks, but he was lifted at that point, with no explanation for the move available right away...
Luke Weaver was removed from today's #Dbacks game with right shoulder discomfort.— Arizona Diamondbacks (@Dbacks) May 16, 2021
Luke Weaver’s Line: 4.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 3 Ks, 68 P, 40 S, 5/2 GO/FO.
Juan Streak-o?: While he hasn’t been exactly tearing the cover off the ball, and while some reporters have asked the outfielder and his manager about the lack of elevation on his hit balls since he returned from the IL, Juan Soto, who had a left shoulder strain keep him out for a couple weeks, has been low-key getting there.
Entering play on Sunday, the 22-year-old outfielder had hits in each of his last five games.
Soto was 6 for 19 (.316 AVG) over that stretch, reaching base safely in 12 of his last 25 plate appearances in those games, with six walks in addition to the hits, all of which were singles.
Soto grounded out the first time up today, walked in his second plate appearance, and hit into a double play in at bat No. 3.
With a runner on second and no one out in the eighth, Soto grounded out to first base, but moved the runner up...
Bullpen Action: Alex Young took over on the mound for the D-backs after four scoreless by their starter, and retired the side in order in the top of the fifth.
Back on the mound in the top of the sixth, Young worked around a leadoff single by Trea Turner for his second scoreless frame.
Joakim Soria came on in the top of the seventh, and gave up a leadoff single to center by Kyle Schwarber, who stole second one out later, but was stranded there.
Stefan Crichton got the top of the eighth for the Diamondbacks, and Yadiel Hernández got Crichton in the first at bat, taking a 1-0 sinker for a ride to left for an opposite field pinch hit home run and 1-0 Nationals’ lead. Hernández’s 2nd of 2021. Victor Robles doubled to center in the next at bat, and scored on a chopper over the left side by Trea Turner, 2-0. Turner got to third on a Juan Soto groundout, but was tagged out in a rundown on a Ryan Zimmerman grounder. Zimmerman took second on the play, and scored on a two-out RBI single by Kyle Schwarber, 3-0.
Daniel Hudson worked around a two-out single in a scoreless, 14-pitch eighth.
Kevin Ginkel kept it close with a scoreless top of the ninth.
Brad Hand came on with a three-run lead and retired the side in order to end it. Ballgame.
Final Score: 3-0 Nationals
Nationals now 16-20