A lot of streaks were extended today. Ian Desmond‘s 15-game hitting streak? Oh yeah. MLB-leading 78 straight series with a home run? Yup, thanks to Ryan Zimmerman. Nats win second straight and fourth of five? You betcha. The Nats also get credit for two comebacks in this one, trailing 1-0 and 3-2. Optimistic as I am, it’s easy for me to try to latch onto this and claim that the Nationals have turned it around. As much as I want it to be true, I won’t claim it until it’s undeniable. Nothing is undeniable about two wins in Colorado by a total of three runs. It’s positive and encouraging, but nothing more.
Most Important Nationals Hit: Ryan Zimmerman’s game-tying double (+19.1%)
Zimmerman actually had the two most impactful hits of the game, but this one ekes out the title ahead of his earlier two-run home run (+17.3%). After Roger Bernadina doubled with one out in the eighth, Zimmerman sent a Matt Belisle pitch deep to the right field corner and just fair, scoring Bernadina with relative ease and tempting Zim to go to third, though he instead wisely opted to remain at second and would later score on an Ian Desmond single.
Most Important Nationals Pitch: Michael Cuddyer‘s game-tying double (-15.5%)
Cuddyer came to the plate with Troy Tulowitzki on first after a single and no outs in the fourth. His double off a somewhat rusty Ross Detwiler, making his first start since May 14th thanks to an oblique injury, would have put him on second and Tulo on third, but was bobbled by Jayson Werth in right. The error allowed Tulo to score, tying the score at two, and moved Cuddyer to third, from where he would score in the next at-bat.
Champ of the Game: Desmond (+35.7%) continued his hitting streak in a big way, going 4-4 with four singles, a run scored, and an RBI. He is now hitting .293 on the season. Colorado starter Jeff Francis (+15.2%) had his way with the Nats despite his 6.30 ERA coming in. He allowed two runs on five hits in six innings while striking out eight.
Chump of the Game: Kurt Suzuki (-19.6%) continues to struggle, and with his 0-4 today, was hitless for his two games in Colorado. He is now hitting .221 on the year. For the Rockies, Belisle (-27.5%) struggled heavily, allowing the two winning runs in the eighth on three hits and two walks.