Sanchez vs San Francisco:
Aaron Sanchez had surgery to repair a torn capsule in his right shoulder, which kept him from pitching in the majors in 2020’s 60-game COVID campaign, and the right-handed starter had a biceps issue which limited him to just nine games (seven starts) and 35 1⁄3 IP with the San Francisco Giants in 2021, after he signed a 1-year/$4M deal with the club.
This time around, Sanchez, 29, got a 1-year/$2M contract from Washington (which includes up to $4M in performance bonuses), and he started the season at Triple-A Rochester in the Nationals’ system, but came back up to the majors to start against the Giants last weekend in the nation’s capital, giving up six hits, a walk, and four earned runs in 4 1⁄3 IP.
“I just stayed on the attack all day, really,” he said after his 2022 debut. “That’s my game. Try to get guys on their heels, and then when they start swinging, then you mix it up, just didn’t fall my way today.”
“He’s a ground ball guy, and he throws a lot of ground balls. When he’s good, that’s what he does. So I was definitely pleased by that, they found some holes, but he threw the ball well,” manager Davey Martinez said following a 5-2 loss to the Giants in D.C.
Tonight in San Francisco’s Oracle Park, Sanchez took the mound with a 1-0 lead, courtesy of Juan Soto, who homered in the top of the first inning, and the starter worked around a 2-out single in a scoreless first, but gave up a two-out single and two-run home run, by Giants’ CF Austin Slater and third baseman Jason Vosler, respectively, in a 16-pitch home-half of the second inning.
Slater singled to start the Giants’ fifth, took third on a one-out single by Joey Bart, and came in on a sac fly by Luis González, which made it a 5-3 game after five innings, with Sanchez up to 71 pitches after the 13-pitch bottom of the inning.
With the Nationals up 9-3 after five and a half, and a long top of the fifth inning, the visiting team went to the pen...
Aaron Sanchez’s Line: 5.0 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 4 Ks, 1 HR, 71 P, 51 S, 5/3 GO/FO.
Wood vs Washington:
In his third start of the season for the Giants, with whom he signed a 2-year/$24M deal this past November, after signing on with San Francisco on a 1-year/$3M in 2021, Alex Wood, 31, gave up four hits, a walk, and two earned runs over five innings, in which he struck out five Washington Nationals’ batters in a 77-pitch effort in a 5-2 win for the lefty and his club.
The outing left the lefty with a 2.51 ERA, a 3.69 FIP, four walks, 16 Ks, and .241/.305/.389 line against in 14 1⁄3 IP.
Wood’s ERA was up to 3.07 after he gave up a one-out solo shot to center by Juan Soto, who crushed an 0-2 sinker and hit a 409-foot home run off the Giants’ lefty, his 4th of 2022, 1-0.
Maikel Franco lined a double to left field to lead off the second, and scored two outs later on an RBI line drive to left-center by Victor Robles, who came around on an opposite field single by Alcides Escobar for a 3-0 lead after one and a half.
It was 3-2 in the third when Nelson Cruz walked with one down, took third on a misplay in right on a Josh Bell single, and scored on another double by Franco, 4-2, and then 5-2 on Lane Thomas’s two-out infield single.
Alex Wood’s Line: 5.0 IP, 8 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 3 Ks, 1 HR, 86 P, 62 S, 8/1 GO/FO
Juan Soto finished the Nationals’ 10-game homestand 6 for 32 (.188/.366/.281), taking the 23-year-old Nationals’ outfielder from a .289/.460/.553 line on April 17th to .243/.418/.429, and he hadn’t hit a home run in 48 plate appearances going back to the 16th of April.
The three home runs he’d hit on the season were all solo shots too, for his only 3 RBIs in 21 games this month.
His fourth was a one-out solo shot in the top of the first tonight, 108 miles off the bat, out to center in Oracle Park, 409 feet from home. Wood wants that one back. Soto picked up his first RBI on a non-solo home run later in the game...
Giants’ righty Yunior Marte took over on the mound in the top of the sixth, and gave up a hit by Victor Robles (2 for 3), then hit Alcides Escobar, setting César Hernández up with an RBI opportunity he cashed in with a line drive to right field on a first-pitch slider, 6-3.
Jarlín García came on to face Juan Soto, lefty vs lefty, with two on and one out, and Soto lined a 1-1 changeup off the top of the brick wall in right in the Giants’ home for an RBI hit, and a 7-3 lead. Hernández scored in the next at-bat on a throwing error on a double play attempt on a Nelson Cruz grounder to first, 8-3, and 9-3 when Cruz took second on the E, and scored on a Josh Bell grounder by third.
Austin Voth gave up back-to-back singles to Wilmer Flores and Brandon Crawford after he took over on the mound in the bottom of the sixth, but struck out the next two batters (with a wild pitch moving both runners in scoring position).
Steve Cishek took over with two out, and runners on second and third, and the side-arming right-hander popped Austin Slater up to end the threat. Still 9-3.
Sam Clay gave up a solo home run to left by Joey Bart in the bottom of the seventh, 9-4.
Giants’ righty Kervin Castro walked Juan Soto to start the eighth, and Soto took third on a ground-rule double by Josh Bell, then scored on an RBI single to center by Maikel Franco, 10-4. Lane Thomas drove in a run with a single as well, 11-4, and two runs scored on Victor Robles’s fourth hit of the night, (after he had 7 in 52 PAs before today), 13-4, and 14-4 on an Alcides Escobar single.
Francisco Perez gave up a leadoff single and back-to-back, 2-out walks in the eighth inning, and was replaced by Paolo Espino, who got out No. 3 to leave the bases loaded.
Josh Bell and Maikel Franco were both 4 for 6 after singling in back-to-back, 1-out at-bats in the ninth.
Espino came back out in the ninth and wrapped up a long night on the east coast with a scoreless ninth...
Final Score: 14-4 Nats
Nationals now 7-15