Nationals Pound Giants, Win 9-2 Behind Stephen Strasburg’s Strong Start


Jun 9, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg (37) pitches the ball against the San Francisco Giants during the fourth inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Stephen Strasburg, seeking to win his third straight, was on his game against the San Francisco Giants on Monday night. He didn’t need much help from his offense, but the lineup provided him with plenty of wiggle room early on.

Jayson Werth kicked off the scoring in the first inning with an RBI double that scored Denard Span, who doubled to lead off the game. Wilson Ramos then singled to lead off the top of the second inning, and he was tripled home by Ian Desmond just one batter later.

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The Giants got to Strasburg a bit in the bottom of the frame. Tyler Colvin roped a ground-rule double and later scored when Brandon Crawford ripped a line drive single to Werth in right field. With the score 2-1, both teams needed to keep grinding at-bats.

The Nats tacked on two more in the top of the third when Desmond scored both Adam LaRoche and Ryan Zimmerman with a two-RBI single to left field. Desmond has started to come out of his extended slump of late, and the offense has enjoyed the benefits.

There was no more scoring for either team until the top of the seventh. That’s when the Nationals broke it open. Span scored on a Werth RBI single. With the bases loaded, Zimmerman grounded one to short. Crawford made the throw home to Buster Posey to get the out at the plate, but Posey’s throw to first for the double play was mishandled by Michael Morse. When the ball scooted past Morse, Werth scored.

Ramos then smashed a ground-rule double that scored LaRoche. Desmond was up next, and he ripped a double to score Zimmerman and Ramos. Desmond finished 3-for-5 on the day with five RBI.

The Giants would try to chip away at the 9-1 lead in the bottom of the eighth. But Joaquin Arias‘ RBI single was the only damage done. That run was charged to Ross Detwiler, who pitched two innings of relief.

Strasburg lasted six innings, allowing just one run and striking out seven. He brought his ERA to 2.99 with the strong performance. Aaron Barrett pitched the seventh inning, striking out two and lowering his ERA to a minuscule 0.83.

The Nats will next be in action on Tuesday night at 10:05 p.m. ET when Doug Fister squares off against Madison Bumgarner of the Giants.