Fedde vs Milwaukee:
Erick Fedde threw 36 pitches in the first inning of his last outing before tonight, giving up three hits, two walks, and two runs in the opening frame, and he settled in, but after three scoreless frames, in which he threw 38 pitches total, he gave up two more runs before his manager, Davey Martinez, pulled the plug on his start with two out in the fifth.
“I think that first inning, I just felt a little rushed, didn’t have my rhythm. But then once I got through that, settled in quite nicely.”
“Fedde kept us in the ballgame after the first two innings,” manager Davey Martinez said. “I was proud of him,” but when he struggled in the fifth, the fifth-year skipper decided it was enough.
“His pitch count was up to 86 pitches after 4 2/3,” Martinez noted.
Tonight, the 29-year-old righty was going up against a Milwaukee Brewers club he held to two runs on four hits and three walks back on May 20th in Wisconsin.
Back home in D.C., Fedde worked around a one-out walk in a 17-pitch first, but he gave up a one-out single by Andrew McCutchen in the top of the second, and Jace Peterson followed with a two-run home run to right on a 2-0 cutter up in the zone. The 429-foot shot landed in the first row of the second deck in right field, and it put Milwaukee up 2-1 a half-inning after Washington put up a run in the bottom of the first.
Christian Yelich singled with one out in the third, and Rowdy Tellez walked with two down, but Keibert Ruiz and Josh Bell pulled off another slick back-pick to get Tellez off the bag at first for out No. 3 of a 20-pitch frame which left Fedde at 57 total after three.
Andrew McCutchen was 2 for 2 tonight after he singled off Fedde with one out in the top of the fourth, and he stole second base, then took third on a wild pitch, before scoring on a fly ball to center off Jace Peterson’s bat that Victor Robles caught at the wall, 3-3.
It was 5-3 in the Nationals’ favor after the bottom of the fourth, and Fedde retired the side in order in a 12-pitch frame in the fifth, and got two outs around a walk in the top of the sixth, but that was it for the right-hander against the Brewers. Fedde was up to 98 pitches overall.
Erick Fedde’s Line: 5.2 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 4 Ks, 1 HR, 98 P, 55 S, 6/3 GO/FO.
Ashby vs the Nationals:
Aaron Ashby threw a scoreless inning of relief against Washington when the Nationals were in Milwaukee last month, and the Brewers’ lefty, who bounced between the bullpen and the rotation in the first two months, started in three outings between that relief appearance and his start against the Nats tonight in the nation’s capital, putting up a 2.55 ERA, 2.52 FIP, five walks, 26 Ks, and a .217/.270/.333 line against in 17 2⁄3 IP over that stretch.
Ashby and the Brewers were behind early in the series opener in Nationals Park, after Lane Thomas singled to start the bottom of the first, took second base on a fly to right field, and scored on a two-out single by Nelson Cruz, who drove in the first run of the game for either team, 1-0 Nats.
Victor Robles walked, was running and lost track of the ball when Lane Thomas lined one to center in the next at-bat, and took third, and was held there, on a César Hernández single to left field. Juan Soto stepped in next, 1 for 5 with the bases loaded on the year, and the Nats’ 22-year-old slugger sent a dribbler past the mound for an RBI infield single, 2-2. Nelson Cruz hit a grounder to the right side that Brewers’ second baseman Luis Urías reached but could not gather up, and Thomas scored from third on the play for a 3-2 Nats’ lead.
Ashby’s 35-pitch third left him at 65 pitches total, and pitch No. 66, a first-pitch changeup to Maikel Franco in the bottom of the fourth, went 428 feet to left field, over the visiting team’s bullpen to put the Nationals back on top, 4-3, a half-inning after the Brewers rallied to tie it. Franco’s 5th of 2022.
Lane Thomas, César Hernández, and Juan Soto hit back-to-back-to-back, two-out singles off the Brewers’ starter later in the fourth, with Thomas scoring on Soto’s opposite field liner to left field, 5-3.
Josh Bell ... tripled to right field on a ball Hunter Renfroe sold out for, and couldn’t quite get to. Bell’s 1st triple of 2022, and second in the last three seasons, and he scored with two out on a Luis García liner to right on a first-pitch slider from Ashby, 6-3. Victor Robles singled to end Ashby’s outing, but not until after he’d tapped a ball still in play after a swinging strike, and wasn’t called out, then had a catcher’s interference-ish call as well. Brewers’ manager Craig Counsell did not like what was going on, and he got tossed as he took his starter out...
Aaron Ashby’s Line: 4.2 IP, 13 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 1 BB, 2 Ks, 1 HR, 104 P, 77 S, 9/2 GO/FO.
Miguel Sánchez took over for Milwaukee with two on and two out in the fifth, and got out No. 3 to keep it a 6-3 game in Washington’s favor.
Steve Cishek came on for Washington with a runner on and two out in the top of the sixth, and the side-winding righty struck Andrew McCutchen out to strand the inherited runner.
Sánchez came back out for the sixth, and walked Juan Soto in front of Nelson Cruz, who hit a single to center, setting Josh Bell up with an RBI opportunity he cashed in with a 3-run HR to right field that put the Nationals up 9-3.
And 10-3 on a home run by Keibert Ruiz in the at-bat that followed. Bell’s 6th. Ruiz’s 2nd.
Cishek worked around a two-out walk for a scoreless seventh vs the Brewers.
Brent Suter K’d two in a 1-2-3 bottom of the seventh.
Andres Machado got a double play grounder out of Willy Adames after giving up a leadoff single by Christian Yelich in the top of the eighth, but Maikel Franco bobbled the ball, and had no chance at second, then threw the ball way wide of first base. Yelich took third base on the throwing error and scored on a sac fly by Rowdy Tellez, 10-4, and then 10-5 after 7 1⁄2 after Andrew McCutchen singled to drive in Adames.
And then it was 11-5 after Nelson Cruz hit an opposite field blast off Brewers’ righty Luke Baker to lead off the Nats’ eighth. Cruz’s 4th hit of the game (4 for 5) and 6th HR of 2022.
Nationals now 22-38