On Tuesday night, the Nats welcomed the Cleveland Indians to town to start a two-game series, picking up where they left off after another two-game series a week ago in Cleveland.
Max Scherzer was on the bump for the Nats, looking to improve to 13-6 on the season. His efforts for his 13th win were impressive, but not enough. He took a no-hit bid into the top of the seventh inning and then the Nats’ night fell apart. After striking out Jason Kipnis, the no-no was broken up by shortstop Francisco Lindor. After an errant pickoff error, Lindor was batted in one batter later by Jose Ramirez. The Nats had gone from a hopeful no-hitter to losing in the matter of two batters. Ramirez stole third and then was plated on a single to right field by Lonnie Chisenhall. Scherzer was pulled and relieved by Blake Treinen to begin the top of the eighth, trailing 2-0.
After Treinen and Sammy Solis pitched a perfect top of the eighth, All-Star trade acquisition Andrew Miller was brought on for the bottom of the eighth. On a hanging 2-2 breaking ball, Jayson Werth laced a ball into the left field seats. The Nats would show life after Werth’s home run with a single by Wilson Ramos, but would still trail 2-1 heading to the top of the ninth inning.
Solis remained in the game to pitch the ninth. Solis gave up a double to the first batter he faced, the surging Jason Kipnis, who then moved to third on a sharp ground ball fielded spectacularly by Daniel Murphy at first base. Ramirez would again come back to bite the Nats with a one out single to center that plated Kipnis, giving the Tribe a 3-1 lead.
Reliever Cody Allen was brought on for the bottom of the ninth inning, where the Nats would go quietly, only sending four batters to the plate.
Although the Nats lost, there were some bright spots from the game. Outfielder Ben Revere flashed the leather in a sensational grab at the wall to preserve the no-hitter. Werth, with a walk, increased his on-base streak to 39 games.
The Nats will look to redeem Scherzer and avenge last night’s lost on Wednesday afternoon. Gio Gonzalez (11-4, 3.81 ERA) will face off against Josh Tomlin (7-9, 4.13 ERA). First pitch is at 4:05 p.m.