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Washington Nationals drop 2 of 3 to Colorado Rockies with 10-5 loss in finale in Coors Field

With a two-hour rain delay early in the game, it was a long afternoon in Denver, CO.

Washington Nationals v Colorado Rockies Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

The Washington Nationals and Colorado Rockies’ series finale in Coors Field was in the top of the third inning, with the home team up 4-3, when the sky over Denver opened up, and sent this one into a rain delay, which lasted two hours.

When played resumed the Nationals took the lead with a three-run top of the third, but the Rockies put up two in the bottom of the third, then added three in the fifth to go up 9-5 in what ended up a 10-5 win.

Espino vs the Rockies: Paolo Espino tossed 5 23 scoreless against the Rockies earlier this month in Nationals Park, giving up three hits and three walks and striking out seven of the 22 batters he faced in what ended up a 3-0 win for the home team.

“I think today everything was working pretty good,” Espino said after the 91-pitch outing against the Rockies.

“Being able to spot my fastball when I need it, and the offspeed also works really good, every time I’m locating my fastball, I think everything else works even better.”

Last time out before today, the right-hander gave up five hits (two home runs) and three runs total in five innings against the Reds in Cincinnati.

This afternoon, Espino took on the Rockies again, this time in Coors Field, and he took the mound with a 2-0 lead, but ran into trouble with two outs in the bottom of the first inning, giving up a walk to Charlie Blackmon, back-to-back singles by Trevor Story and C.J. Cron, with Cron’s driving in Blackmon, and a three-run shot to left by Ryan McMahon, 4-2.

Espino worked around a two-out double in a scoreless, 13-pitch second which left him at 34 pitches total after two...

A two-hour rain delay ended Espino’s outing there.

Paolo Espino’s Line: 2.0 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 1 HR, 34 P, 18 S, 4/1 GO/FO.

Lambert vs the Nationals: Peter Lambert has one career start against the Nationals on his resume, back in 2019, but he underwent Tommy John surgery in 2020, so he hadn’t faced Washington in two years, and in that time, everyone he did face not named Juan Soto had moved on from the Nats.

Lambert, 24, and a 2015 2nd Round pick out of high school in San Dimas, California (San Dimas High School Baseball rules!), returned to the mound in the majors earlier this year, 735 days after his last big league start, throwing 3 23 IP against the San Francisco Giants, giving up four hits, a walk, and two earned runs in a 65-pitch effort which followed seven starts across three levels or the Rockies’ minor league system.

This afternoon in Coors Field, Lambert fell behind early, giving up a leadoff double by Lane Thomas and three straight singles, by Alcides Escobar, Juan Soto, and Josh Bell, with Soto’s driving in Thomas, 1-0, and Bell’s loading the bases with no one out. Yadiel Hernández hit a grounder to the right side to bring in run No. 2, 2-0. Luis García struck out with two on and one out, for out No. 2, but Riley Adams walked to load the bases in front of Carter Kieboom, who grounded out to end the threat.

It was 4-2 Rockies in the third, when Lambert came out and gave up back-to-back singles by Josh Bell and Yadiel Hernández and an RBI double by Luis García, 4-3.

That was it for the Rockies’ starter...

Peter Lambert’s Line: 2.0 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 58 P, 36 S, 5/0 GO/FO.

Alcides EscOBPar: Alcides Escobar had an 11-game hit streak snapped on Sunday in Cincy, but going into today’s game, the infielder had hits in 13 of his last 14 games, going 23 for 65 (.354 AVG) over that stretch, with six doubles, a home run, nine RBIs, four walks, one stolen base, and nine runs scored. Escobar singled the first time up today, making it hits in 14 of 15 games.

Bullpen Action: Yency Almonte took over for the Rockies with runners on second and third and no one out in the Nationals’ third, and hit Riley Adams, struck out Carter Kieboom, and got to a 2-2 count with Paolo Espino before the game went into a rain delay...

Two hours later, Rockies’ right-hander Ashton Goudeau took over on the mound for the home team with the bases loaded and one out, and got a swinging K with one pitch to pinch hitter Andrew Stevenson for out No. 2, but Lane Thomas lined a two-out, two-run single to left to put the Nationals up by a run, 5-4.

Mason Thompson took over for the Nationals out of the delay, and walked Charlie Blackmon before Trevor Story singled to put two on with no one out. Thompson hit C.J. Cron, loading them up, and that was it for the right-hander.

Austin Voth took over for the bases full of Rockies and struck out Ryan McMahon for the first out of the inning, but Sam Hilliard singled to center on a 2-1 curve, driving in two runs to put the home team on top, 6-5, and a walk to Dom Nuñez loaded the bases back up in front of pitcher Ashton Goudeau, who K’d swinging for out No. 2, before Raimel Tapia grounded out to end the third.

Goudeau retired the Nationals in order in the top of the fourth.

Andres Machado worked around back-to-back, one-out singles in a scoreless bottom of the fourth, still 6-5 Rockies.

In the fifth, Goudeau gave up leadoff and one-out walks, to Luis García and Carter Kieboom, respectively, but Alex Avila grounded in an inning-ending double play to keep it a one-run game in the Rockies’ favor, 6-5.

Alberto Baldonado gave up a leadoff walk and one-out single before he was replaced on the mound by Jhon Romero, who gave up an RBI double by pinch hitter Colton Welker, 7-5, and 8-5 on an RBI single by Raimel Tapia, before a sac fly by Brendan Rodgers made it a 9-5 lead.

Jhoulys Chacin got a double play out of Juan Soto after a one-out walk to Alcides Escobar in the top of the sixth.

Sean Nolin, with help from Juan Soto on a catch at the right field fence, worked around a hit by Trevor Story in a scoreless bottom of the sixth.

Lucas Gilbreath replaced Chacin after a leadoff walk to Josh Bell in the top of the seventh, and got two outs to strand the inherited runner.

Nolin worked around a single and a walk in a second scoreless inning of work.

Daniel Bard retired the Nationals in order in the top of the eighth.

Erick Fedde came out of the bullpen in the bottom of the eighth and gave up a one-out walk to Trevor Story, who took third on a C.J. Cron double, and scored on a grounder to second off Ryan McMahon’s bat, 10-5.

Bard returned to the mound in the top of the ninth and wrapped this one up with another scoreless inning of work.

Final Score: 10-5 Rockies

Nationals now 65-94