Washington’s Nationals were a combined 2 for 23 with runners in scoring position and 20 runners left on base over their three straight losses to the Baltimore Orioles, which is not really a good way to win games. Having your closer blow a one-run lead in the finale after dropping the first two games to a club that’s 30 games under .500 isn’t great either.
“Every loss is tough, but this one was tough,” Davey Martinez said after the finale with the O’s on Sunday in OPACY.
“You give the ball to your closer in the ninth inning, you don’t expect that to happen. So it was a tough one.”
As for all the missed opportunities with runners in scoring position in the series, Martinez told reporters, “in those situations we got to kind of look for the ball up, we chased a lot of bad breaking balls, we got to get the ball up in the strike zone, and stay in the middle of the field, and hit the balls that are in the strike zone. We’ve done it before, like I said, we’ve done it before, we scored a bunch of runs before we got to this series, and it just went away, so we’ve got to get back to that.”
Martinez’s club has now dropped four in a row overall, falling to 45-53 overall on the year, a full 8.0 games back in the NL East and 11.0 games out in the Wild Card race.
“We got to kind of put it behind us,” the fourth-year skipper said on Sunday. “What we need to do right now, because this is a tough time of the year for players, I can tell you, everyone is worried about getting traded, everybody is hearing rumors. We need to focus on staying present, that’s what we need to do, and focus on winning one game at a time, and go out there and do your best to win for the Nats. That’s what we need to start doing, and worry about the present, can’t do nothing about these three losses, we got to come back tomorrow and play a team in our division, the Phillies, and we got to come back and try to win that first game tomorrow.”
While all hope might seem lost, Martinez hasn’t given up on the possibility of turning this thing around. He doesn’t think his club is out of it.
“Look, there’s been a lot of teams that have been down 9.0 games in their division, and a lot of teams that have come back and won their division, so not by any means, I can tell you, are we going to quit, I can tell you that right now, so we just got to focus, on like I said, forget about this weekend, this week, and go get them tomorrow. That’s all we can do.”
HERE’S THE NATIONALS’ LINEUP FOR THE 1ST OF 4 WITH THE PHILLIES:
We’ve arrived in Philly.#NATITUDE pic.twitter.com/tRlc7ousXK— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) July 26, 2021