By Michael Marzzacco
The Nats got an 8-4 win on Wednesday night behind the brilliant pitching of Stephen Strasburg as he fanned 13 Cubs hitters over seven innings. On Thursday the Nationals bullpen faltered in a 5-4 defeat as the Nats and Cubs split the four game series in DC. Chicago took game one while Washington took the second game.
Welcome to Strasburg!
Population: 13K pic.twitter.com/BUMybix0HI
— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) June 29, 2017
Here’s highlights of Strasburg’s gem.
Ryan Zimmerman got the Nationals on the board in the first with a line drive to center field that scored Bryce Harper. In the second, Anthony Rendon homered to left-center into the seats above the visitors’ bullpen. Matt Wieters followed with a home run over the centerfield wall for back-to-back jacks. The Nationals would then load the bases and Bryce Harper drew a walk to score another run. Ryan Zimmerman got on base with a fielding error by third baseman Kris Bryant that scored Trea Turner. The four-run second inning put the Nationals ahead 5-0.
The Nats added another run in the third with a sacrifice fly by Michael Taylor in center field that scored Anthony Rendon. In the fifth, Daniel Murphy homered into the seats above the out of town scoreboard in centerfield. Later in the inning Bryant hurt his ankle from catching a pop-up and putting his foot down on the third base bag. He left the game and didn’t play the next day. The Nats tacked on another run in the sixth with a double by Harper to center field that scored Turner.
The Cubs struck early in the first inning off of Joe Ross with an RBI single by Wilson Contreras to go up 1-0. The Nats tied it in the bottom of the inning with an RBI double by Ryan Zimmerman into right field that scored Bryce Harper.
In the bottom of the sixth, Nationals manager Dusty Baker was ejected after arguing over a called third strike from Jon Lester to Ryan Raburn. Raburn said that he foul tipped strike three but the umpire disagreed.
In the top of the seventh, the Cubs took the lead with a solo home run by Jeimer Candelario. In the bottom of the frame, the Nats went in front with a two-run homer by Anthony Rendon.
— MLB (@MLB) June 29, 2017
The Nats added an extra run with an bases-loaded single by Brian Goodwin that scored Michael Taylor. Then it was on to the bullpen….
Bake Treinen was on for the ninth. He began the inning by striking out Addison Russell. Next he hit Jeimer Candelario. Pinch-hitter Victor Caratini grounded into a fielder’s choice to second. Javier Baez singled to right field to put Caratini at third base. Another pinch-hitter, Tomma La Stella singled to left field over Stephen Drew’s outstretched glove to score Caratini. Jon Jay would follow with a double to score two runs and give the Cubs the 5-4 lead. That would be the final.
Some bad news happened after the game. Turner was hit by a pitch in the seventh and after the game the Nats announced that he had a non-displaced fracture in his right wrist. No timetable yet for a return.