The Nationals kept their offense going, but the Orioles’ bats were on a whole other level. They got a total of 20 baserunners with 15 hits and five walks, while the Nats managed eight with no walks. The Nats took the early lead, but the Orioles quickly responded and never let up, scoring twice against the Nats’ bullpen. At the end of the third inning, the Nats had a 63.4% chance of winning, but that dropped to 29% at the end of the fourth, in which the Orioles scored three runs. Scoring runs in bunches can dramatically change the face of a game, especially with WPA, and stringing together hits with runners in scoring position is how you score runs in bunches. The O’s were 2-4 with RISP in that inning, and both hits were singles.
Most Important Nationals Hit: Tyler Moore‘s RBI double (+11.1%)
He may be hitting .152 on the season, but with his recent performance, he’s left the Nats wanting Moore. I’m so sorry. Anyway, with one out and Adam LaRoche on second in the second, Moore doubled down the left field line off Jason Hammel to score LaRoche and give the Nats a 1-0 lead. This was Moore’s fourth straight game with a hit, and his warming up will be critical to the Nats’ offense, especially with the injuries to his fellow outfielders Jayson Werth and Bryce Harper.
Most Important Nationals Pitch: Nick Markakis‘ two-run single (-21.3%)
With two outs and runners on second and third, Gio Gonzalez was close to escaping the fourth inning having allowed only one run. However, Markakis sent a single to right that scored Matt Wieters and Yamaico Navarro to give the the Orioles the lead and more runs than Hammel would end up needing. It was certainly a blow, giving the Nationals quite a slope to climb with the current state of their offense.
Chump of the Game: Gonzalez (-19.6%) struggled, allowing four runs in 5.2 IP on eight hits with four walks. Today’s start broke a string of strong ones for him, as he had a 1.76 ERA in the month before today. For the Orioles, Steve Pearce (-8.7%) was 1-4 with a strikeout.