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Washington Nationals drop third straight to Philadelphia Phillies, 9-5 final in D.C.

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No one said this reboot was going to be easy, but it has been kind of fun to watch so far...

Philadelphia Phillies v Washington Nationals Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images

The home runs were flying out of Nationals Park tonight, with the Washington Nationals and Philadelphia Phillies combining for six total in the third game of four in the nation’s capital.

Victor Robles, Luis García (twice), and Carter Kieboom went deep for the Nationals, with Rhys Hoskins and Didi Gregorius homering for the Phillies, who also strung together four doubles and an RBI single in a four-run third, and won their third straight in D.C. by a final score of 9-5.

Espino vs the Phillies: Paolo Espino has tossed 2 23 scoreless against the Phillies out of the bullpen this season, walking one, striking out one, and holding batters to a .133/.188/.400 line, but tonight he was getting the start coming off a month of July in which the 34-year-old right-hander put up a 4.56 ERA, seven walks, 20 Ks, and a .263/.306/.495 line against in six games, five starts, and 25 23 IP.

Last time out before tonight, Espino held the Chicago Cubs to a run on four hits in 5 13 IP, and with the trades the Nationals made at the deadline, he figures to be a part of the Nats’ rotation the rest of the way.

“It will be nice, but at the same time, just what I keep saying, I go out there and whatever the role that’s given to me,” Espino said.

“I’m going to go out there, do my best, give my 100%, and give the team a chance to win.

“That’s my goal, either starting, relieving, closing, anything. So, I’m just going to keep doing my best whatever role it comes in.”

Espino tossed a scoreless, 12-pitch first tonight, and came out for the second with a 1-0 lead and retired the side in order in a nine-pitch frame.

It was 3-0 Nationals when he came out for the third, but the Phillies rallied with four doubles and four runs off the Nats’ starter, with Andrew Knapp, Travis Jankowski, Jean Segura, and Rhys Hoskins all connecting for two-base hits around an RBI single by Bryce Harper as Philly rallied to take the lead, 4-3.

Espino held the Phillies off the board in the fourth, but Bryce Harper singled with one out in the fifth, and Rhys Hoskins followed with a two-run home run on a 1-0 slider Espino left up, 6-3 Phillies. Hoskins’ 24th. He ended up throwing 32 pitches in the fifth, and that was it for his outing...

Paolo Espino’s Line: 5.0 IP, 8 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 1 BB, 3 Ks, 1 HR, 90 P, 55 S, 8/4 GO/FO.

Anderson vs the Nationals: Phillies’ righty Chase Anderson held the Nationals to two runs on five hits when he pitched in Nationals Park back in May, but he landed on the COVID-IL back in June, and threw two innings in relief upon returning before going back to starting tonight in the third of four with the Nats tonight in D.C.

On the year, the 33-year-old starter took the mound with a 6.75 ERA and .274/.354/.497 line against in 13 games, eight starts, and 44 IP on the season, and he fell behind early, like a pitch into his outing early, when Victor Robles ambushed him on a first-pitch fastball and sent a 424-foot home run to left field for his second of the season and a 1-0 Nats’ lead.

Luis García hit a 2-1 changeup from Anderson into the right field bullpen for a solo home run with two out in the Nationals’ second, and Carter Kieboom hit the next pitch out 410 feet to left field for back-to-back blasts, the second for each this season, and a 3-0 lead.

Anderson came out for the third with a 4-3 lead, however, and he held the Nationals off the board for the next two, and it was 6-3 when the Phillies went to the bullpen in the bottom of the fifth...

Chase Anderson’s Line: 4.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 3 HRs, 55 P, 32 S, 6/5 GO/FO.

KieBOOM!: Carter Kieboom hit his first home run of the 2021 campaign (in the majors) on Monday night in the nation’s capital, and as the Nationals noted before tonight’s game, “... in his last six games, Kieboom [was] 7-for-19 (.368 AVG) with one homer, three RBI(s), three walks and five runs scored,” and he’d, “hit safely in five of the six games.” Kieboom made it hits in six of seven when he hit the Nationals’ third home run in the first two innings 410-feet to left-center field in Nationals Park.

Bullpen Action: JD Hammer took over for the Phillies in the bottom of the fifth, with a 6-3 lead, but he was lifted after giving up a one-out single by Andrew Stevenson, and a walk with two down to Alcides Escobar.

Philly lefty Matt Moore came on to face Juan Soto with two on and two out, and got a ground ball to second to end the threat.

Jefry Rodríguez got the top of the sixth for the Nationals, and worked around a single and an error for a scoreless, 16-pitch frame.

Moore retired the Nationals in order in the bottom of the sixth.

Rodríguez returned to the mound in the top of the seventh, and hit Rhys Hoskins in the back with one down, before Didi Gregorius followed with a homer to right, on a first-pitch fastball that landed in the second deck, 8-3 Phillies.

Moore gave up a solo shot by Luis García, who hit his second of the night the other way, out to left field to make it a four-run game after seven.

Javy Guerra got the top of the eighth for the Nats and a two-out ROE on a Travis Jankowski grounder to short, an infield single by Jean Segura, and an RBI double by Bryce Harper put the Phillies up 9-4.

Yadiel Hernández singled with one down and scored on a Carter Kieboom single in the home half of the ninth, 9-5.

Hernández finished with a 1 for 4 game, Kieboom went 2 for 4 with a HR and an RBI single.

That’s how it ended though...

Final Score: 9-5 Phillies.

Nationals now 49-59