Patrick Corbin and Tucker Davidson had something of a pitchers’ duel going through five in the series finale this afternoon in Atlanta, GA’s Truist Park. Davidson’s fifth walk of the game ended a solid outing for the Braves’ left-hander in the top of the sixth, however, and the Washington Nationals’ starter cracked in the bottom of the inning, giving up four runs on four hits as the home team jumped out to a 4-0 lead in what ended up a 5-1 win.
Corbin vs ATL: In six May outings, Patrick Corbin posted a 4.29 ERA, 10 walks, 27 Ks, and a .279/.326/.457 line against in 35 2⁄3 IP, which, while not great, was really a significant improvement for the left-hander, whose third season in D.C. began with a brutal April which saw him post a 10.47 ERA, 10 walks, 14 Ks, and a .329/.427/.643 line against in 16 1⁄3 IP in his first four starts.
His first start of June began with two quick, scoreless frames, which he completed on just 26 pitches, with some help from a leaping Victor Robles in center for out No. 3 in the first.
Corbin kept the Braves off the board through four, inducing six ground ball outs from the 15 batters he faced, and completed the four innings on an efficient 45 pitches.
An eight-pitch, 1-2-3 fifth left Corbin at [checks math] 53 pitches after five scoreless, with just two hits and one walk allowed overall.
Ronald Acuña, Jr. singled to start the Braves’ sixth, ending Corbin’s streak of retired batters at eight straight set down, stole second base, and then scored the first run of the game for either team on an Ozzie Albies’ single to left, 1-0.
Austin Riley was first-pitch swinging in the next at bat, and he doubled to right field to bring Albies around, 2-0, and 4-0 on a Dansby Swanson shot to left field in the at bat that followed.
A one-out walk to Ehire Adrianza ended Corbin’s day...
Patrick Corbin’s Line: 5.1 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 4 Ks, 1 HR, 79 P, 50 S, 7/3 GO/FO.
Davidson vs D.C.: Tucker Davidson, 25, and a 2016 19th Round pick by the Braves, got the nod for today’s series finale when Atlanta’s braintrust decided to move Ian Anderson back one day and start him in the series opener with the Los Angeles Dodgers tomorrow.
Davidson debuted in the majors last summer, and he made one start for the Braves this season before today, giving up five hits and three runs in six innings against the Mets.
In three starts at Triple-A Gwinnett, the right-hander had a 0.90 ERA in 20 IP before he was called back up today to face the Nationals in the series finale in Truist Park.
Davidson tossed four scoreless and hitless to start, giving up only walks to Juan Soto in each of the outfielder’s first two plate appearances.
Victor Robles took the third walk of the game from the southpaw in the first at bat of the fifth, and Jordy Mercer followed with the Nationals’ first hit, a line drive to right that put a couple runners on in front of catcher Alex Avila. Avila K’d swinging for out No. 1. Patrick Corbin K’d trying to bunt for out No. 2, leaving it up to Trea Turner, who grounded out to end the threat.
Josh Harrison took the fourth walk of the game from Davidson in the first at bat of the sixth. Harrison was forced out at second on a Ryan Zimmerman grounder one out later, and then Starlin Castro walked with two down to put two on and end the Braves’ starter’s outing...
Tucker Davidson’s Line: 5.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 5 BB, 5 Ks, 88 P, 51 S, 7/4 GO/FO.
Nationals Game Notes: With the win on Wednesday night, Nats’ skipper Dave Martinez tied former manager Davey Johnson, “for the most managerial wins in Nationals’ history (2005-pres.) with 224.” A win today would have pushed Martinez ahead of Johnson on the win list, but it didn’t happen...
Bullpen Action: Josh Tomlin came on with two on and two out in the Nationals’ half of the sixth, and got a fly to left for out No. 3. Still 0-0.
Kyle McGowin took over for the Nats with one on and one out in the top of the sixth, in what was suddenly a 4-0 game in the Braves’ favor after Patrick Corbin’s imploded, and got the final two outs of the inning.
Tomlin came back out with a 1-2-3 seventh after the Braves took the lead.
“Every Day” Sam Clay came on for the Nats in the bottom of the seventh inning and gave up a one-out walk to Ronald Acuña, Jr. who scored the Braves’ fifth run of the game on an RBI double to right by Ozzie Albies, 5-0.
Sean Newcomb worked around an infield single by Trea Turner for a scoreless top of the eighth.
Paolo Espino tossed a scoreless frame in the bottom of the eighth and retired the side in order, striking out two in a 14-pitch frame.
Will Smith came on to wrap this one up and gave up back-to-back, two-out hits and a run, 5-1.
Final Score: 5-1 Braves
Nationals now 23-30