Most Important Nationals Hit: Jayson Werth‘s walk (+0.024)
Miserable, right? This game was out of hand quickly, and since the Nationals failed to score any runs, no offensive plays would stand out much. This was a nondescript walk, taking place with one out and bases empty in the third inning. In terms of WPA, however, it was early enough that it had a noticeable statistical impact, which it would not have if it had taken place in the eighth inning. This stat tells you all you need to know about the way the Nats’ offense played today.
Most Important Nationals Pitch: Chris Johnson‘s two-run single (-0.152)
Gio Gonzalez struggled in the first, with his first six batters going: double, flyout, walk, double (RBI), strikeout, single ( 2 RBI). The Nationals’ win probability dropped to 31.6% after Evan Gattis doubled in B.J. Upton, leaving runners on second and third with one out. The odds shot up to 38.6% after Gonzalez struck out Dan Uggla, but plummeted to 23.4% when Johnson’s single gave the Braves an early 3-0 lead. The game went nowhere fast from there, as Justin Upton and Andrelton Simmons home runs in the third buried the Nats in a 7-0 hole, from which they had no chance of escaping.
Champ of the Game: Jayson Werth (+0.018) exemplifies how pathetic the offense was. Only two other offensive players had a WPA of greater than+1.0%: Danny Espinosa, who went 0-0 and was hit by a pitch, and Kurt Suzuki, who was 2-3. For Atlanta, Chris Johnson was +0.166.
Chump of the Game: Gonzalez (-0.372) allowed seven runs in five innings, giving Atlanta the big lead they needed to shut the Nats down early and keep them down. His outing was discouraging, but this red-hot Atlanta team was a buzzsaw, and the Nationals played them close in the first two games. No team has ever been eliminated from the playoffs on April 14th. Dan Uggla (-0.062) was 0-4 with a walk and a run, including a strikeout with runners on second and third and no outs.