Corbin vs ATL Round 2:
Patrick Corbin gave up a leadoff single on a sinker to Ronald Acuña, Jr. when he faced off against the Braves in Atlanta last weekend, and two outs later he left a slider up for Austin Riley, who hit it 422 feet to left field for a two-run homer and a 2-0 lead, early in the 18th start of the year for the Washington Nationals’ lefty.
Four singles and an error in the fourth led to the other two runs the southpaw gave up in a six-inning, 102-pitch outing in what ended up a 4-3 loss to the Nats’ NL East rivals.
“I thought Corbin threw the ball really well again. Just a homer and an error got us today,” manager Davey Martinez said after the game. “But he was really good again, which is what we love to see. I mean, he’s had some really good outings as of late, so we got to keep him right there.”
Going up against the Braves again in a second consecutive start tonight, Corbin had some shoddy defense behind him lead to an early run, with Luis García waiting on a grounder to short off Dansby Swanson’s bat, then rushing and bouncing his throw to first, by Josh Bell, for a one-out E:6, and Matt Olson followed with a shift-beating opposite field, RBI single to give Atlanta a 1-0 lead early in D.C. Austin Riley stepped in next and hit a 94 MPH sinker in the middle of the plate out to left field for a two-run shot, and a 3-0 lead. No. 26 for Riley.
Orlando Arcia singled to start the Braves’ second, took second base on a two-out single by Dansby Swanson, and scored on an RBI single by Matt Olson to make it 4-0 Braves.
Ronald Acuña, Jr. singled with one out in the fourth inning, stole second, and after a walk to Dansby Swanson, he scored on another RBI single by Olson, 5-0.
Orlando Arcia hits Corbin’s 103rd pitch of the game 409 feet to left-center for a two-out HR in the fifth, putting the Braves up 6-0. Corbin was up to 106 pitches after the 19-pitch top of the fifth, and done for the night...
Patrick Corbin’s Line: 5.0 IP, 9 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 2 BB, 8 Ks, 2 HRs, 106 P, 66 S, 5/2 GO/FO.
Anderson in D.C.:
Ian Anderson, 24, and a 2016 1st Round pick by Atlanta, held Washington’s hitters to two hits, four walks, and two runs in 5 1⁄3 IP in the Braves’ home last weekend, but he threw a total of 94 pitches to the 22 batters he faced in a relatively brief outing in a 4-3 win.
“Definitely a step in the right direction for myself. It’s nice to be able to kind of build off the last one, and just trying to go into the break strong at this point,” Anderson told reporters, as quoted in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, after his last turn in the rotation before tonight in Nationals Park.
Given a 3-0 lead to work with after one, and a 4-0 lead after two, Anderson cruised through three scoreless on 39 pitches.
Josh Bell doubled to start the home fourth, then Juan Soto walked in front of Nelson Cruz, who K’d swinging for out No. 1, before Keibert Ruiz popped to left for out No. 2, and Yadiel Hernández K’d swinging as well, and a 29-pitch fourth put Anderson at 68 after four, and a 12-pitch, fifth, in which he worked around a leadoff single, left him at 80 total.
Bell doubled and Soto walked to start the sixth as well, pushing Anderson up to 89 pitches, and Ehire Adrianza grounded into a force at second in the next at-bat, but busted a$$ over to first to avoid the double play. Keibert Ruiz walked to load them up, and with Anderson at 101 pitches on the night, the Braves went to the pen...
Ian Anderson’s Line: 5.1 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 5 Ks, 101 P, 60 S, 5/4 GO/FO.
Soto’s Streak(s) Watch:
Juan Soto, 23, entered tonight’s matchup with a career-best 16-game hit streak going, over which he was 22 for 54 (.407 AVG) with five doubles, five home runs, 16 walks, and 17 runs during that stretch, and he also had a career-high 23-game on-base streak going, with a .511 OBP over the course of that streak.
A walk in the fourth extended his on-base streak to 24-straight games, and he took another free pass in the sixth, 0 for 1, two walks. Soto lined out to left in the eighth, 0 for 2, 2 walks, and got a final shot with the bases loaded and two out in the ninth, and
Erasmo Ramírez took over for the Nationals and retired the Braves in order in the top of the sixth.
Collin McHugh inherited a bases-loaded, one-out jam from Ian Anderson, and the righty got out No. 2 on a fly to right by Yadiel Hernández which wasn’t deep enough for a sac fly, but a HBP on César Hernández got the Nationals their first run, 6-1.
Adam Duvall doubled off Ramírez with one out in the Braves’ seventh, and scored on an RBI single by William Contreras to make it 7-1 Atlanta.
Carl Edwards, Jr. retired the Braves in order in the top of the eighth to keep it a 7-1 game in the visitor’s favor.
Dylan Lee, in his second inning of work, after a 1-2-3 seventh, set the Nationals down in order again in the eighth.
Kyle Finnegan got the top of the ninth, and gave up a 2-out home run on a high 97 MPH fastball to Adam Duvall, whose 12th of the season made it an 8-1 game. 456 feet.
Will Smith gave up a one-out double by César Hernández and a single by Maikel Franco in the bottom of the ninth, and a tweener to left-center by Victor Robles brought Hernández around, 8-2. Josh Bell walked to load’em up for Juan Soto, who got up 3-0, and walked to force in a run, 8-3. And 8-4 when new pitcher A.J. Minter uncorked a wild one. A walk to Ehire Adrianza loaded the bases again, but Keibert Ruiz K’d swinging to end the game.
Nationals now 30-62