The Nationals came within one out of extending their winning streak to five games, falling to the San Diego Padres 4-3 in 11 innings Saturday night.
The Nats regained the lead in the seventh, after Padres starter Andrew Cashner exited, when a Ryan Zimmerman double plated Adam LaRoche, and then Ian Desmond hit his team leading 12th home run of the season to give the Nats a 3-2 lead.
The Padres tied the game 3-3 in the ninth when Rafael Soriano allowed a Yonder Alonso home run with two outs. It was Soriano’s second blown save of the season. The Padres then won the game in the 11th when Maybin singled in Headley off of Nats reliever Craig Stammen (0-2).
Rookie Blake Treinen, making his third career start, acquitted himself well and was in line for his first Major League win. He pitched six innings, allowing two earned runs off of five hits while striking out one.
For the Padres, Cashner made his first start since May 13th, and early on it was evident that the Nats had their work cut out for them. Cashner was throwing 96-97 with movement early on, a clear sign that the elbow soreness that forced him to the disabled list was not indicative of something more serious. Cashner threw only 70 pitches in his return, allowing only two hits while striking out five.
The Nats are now 1-6 on the season in extra-inning games and are only 6-12 in one-run games. They are, essentially, the anti-Orioles from 2012. The loss snapped a seven game winning streak against the Padres dating back to 2013.
Over the last 30 days, Desmond has been on a tear. He has hit 8 HRs and driven in 18. The 8 HRs are the most in the NL over that time and sixth in the Majors.
The Nats look to take the rubber match in the series Sunday afternoon with Jordan Zimmerman (4-2) facing Eric Stults (2-6). The lefty allowed 10 hits to the Nats on April 24th of this season while surrendering two runs.