A Weird Weekend for the Nats

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By Michael Marzzacco

The Nats came off a 10 game road trip with nine wins and headed into the weekend retuning back home to the District to host the struggling New York Mets. While the Nationals lost two of those three ballgames and ultimately the series, they lost something much more mighty than that. Adam Eaton left Friday’s series opener with an leg injury. The next day we would all find out that he would be out for the season. In the finale on Sunday, the Nats hot bats’ exploded. Here’s how it all happened:

FRIDAY
Friday night’s series opener saw the arms of Max Scherzer and Jacob deGrom take the mound for their respective clubs. deGrom’s 12 strikeouts and Travis d’Arneaud’s two homers helped the Mets end a six game losing streak with a 7-3 win. Ryan Zimmerman, the hottest hitter in April, had two homers of his own extending his season total to 10. In addition, he tied Andre Dawson for second most home runs in franchise history with 225 for his career.

In the top of the 2nd, d’Arnaud homered into the seats above the visitor’s bullpen in left-center for his third home run of the year. It gave the Mets a 2-0 lead. The Nats answered in the bottom of the second with Ryan Zimmerman’s NINTH! home run of the year. It was April 28th. Matt Wieters followed with a two run shot home run to dead centerfield. That gave the Nats a 3-2 lead.

With two on, d’Arnaud came on in the fourth and hit his second home run of the night into the seats in left-center field that gave New York a 5-3 lead. The Mets aded two more runs in the eighth.

In the ninth, Zimmerman crushed his second of the game into the seats above the out of town scoreboard for a two-run bomb. That was as close as the Nationals would get.

Runners were at the corners with Adam Eaton up. He grounded to Mets shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera and was safe on the the throw to first base. But he came down after he crossed the bag. He was carried off the field and it took the air out of the crowd of 34,562. Despite that nobody was out. But Trea Turner struck out and Ryan Zimmerman grounded into a double play to end the game.

SATURDAY
The Mets powered their way past the Nats with two home runs from Michael Conforto in a 5-3 win. Ryan Zimmerman continued his hot start to the season by driving in all three Nats runs including a solo homer in the eighth that sailed 470 feet., for his 11th home run of the season. This milestone also helped him pass Andre Dawson for sole possession of second place on the franchises home run leaders list with 226.

The other two runs were a single in the first inning into left field that gave the Nats the early 1-0 lead, their only lead of the game. The base hit scored Michael Taylor. Zimmerman would later single in the fifth inning that scored Trea Turner.

Conforto hit his first home run in the fifth inning off Stephen Strasburg. Strasburg went seven innings allowing three runs on six hits with two strikeouts for his first loss of the season.

SUNDAY
Anthony Rendon powered the Nationals with a great afternoon at the plate going six for six and driving in 10 runs including three home runs en route to a 23-5 win for the Nationals over the Mets. The 23 runs were the most in Nationals/Expos history. Washington also clubbed 23 hits. Their 23 hits and seven total homers were the most in a game since the team reclocated to Washington in 2005. Rendon’s 10 RBI’s were a franchise record.

Trailing 1-0 in the bottom of the first with two runners on and one out, Ryan Zimmerman singled into center field to score Jayson Werth. Two batters later, Rendon singled into left field to score Bryce Harper and Zimmerman. Michael Taylor followed with a single into center field to score Rendon and starting pitcher Joe Ross helped his own cause with a single into left field that scored Taylor. That put the Nats up 5-1. In the bottom of the third Rendon homered into the seats in left field. The Nats got four more runs in the fourth after the Mets pulled within one in the top of the inning. Zimmerman hit a sacrifice fly that scored Werth. Then with two on, Rendon clubbed his second home run of the game, a three-run shot over the wall in left-center. In the fifth, the Nats loaded the bases and Rendon drove them all in with a bases-clearing double off the out of town scoreboard wall in right-center. That stretched the Nationals lead to 13-5. In the bottom of the sixth, Matt Wieters hit a solo shot over the left field wall for his third home run of the season. In the seventh with one on, Daniel Murphy doubled to left field to score Zimmerman. After Rendon got on with a single, Taylor reached first on a throwing error by Jose Reyes that scored Murphy. Wieters would then come up and deliver his second home run of the game, a three run shot over the wall in center field to put the Nationals up 19-5. In the eighth the Nats roudned out their scoring with three home runs. First, Bryce Harper homered over the wall in center field. Then with Zimmerman on, Adam Lind hit his first home run since opening day to center field. Finally, Rendon hit his third home run of the game into left-center.

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