After a dramatic walk-off win last night, the Washington Nationals (7-8) could not find the late inning magic in a 7-5 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals (9-4). After Washington rallied from a 5-0 deficit in the third inning, it was the Cardinals who would re-take the lead in the top of the eighth when second baseman Kolten Wong hit a RBI double to left field against reliever Blake Treinen.
Before the game started, it was announced that lefty reliever Felipe Rivero was placed on the 15-day disabled list due to a GI bleed. Matt Grace is now the second lefty in the bullpen along with Matt Thornton:
The scoring began in the top of the first inning on the very first batter of the game. Matt Carpenter hit a solo shot to deep right field that gave the Cardinals a 1-0 lead. It was Carpenter’s third home run of the season. The home runs would not stop there. In the second inning, after a Yadier Molina two-out single, Kolten Wong ripped a fastball to right field for a two-run homer to extend the lead to 3-0.
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St. Louis would tack on two more runs in the top of the third. With Jason Heyward on second and two outs, Matt Adams would hit a RBI double to left to make it 4-0. Then, John Jay hit a groundball to first base that was misplayed by Ryan Zimmerman at first to make it 5-0.
Even with a five-run deficit, Washington found a way to bounce back. It began with three straight singles by Fister, Denard Span, and Ian Desmond. After a Jayson Werth sacrifice fly put the Nats on the board, Bryce Harper got on base with a two-out walk, one of two that he had in the game.
Then, it was the Cardinals turn to make mistakes in the field. Ryan Zimmerman hit a ground ball to first that was bobbled by Adams. With Lackey not covering first, Zimmerman beat Adams to the bag to make it 5-2. That set up Escobar to drive a 2-1 cutter down the left field line to clear the bases and tie the game.
Once the game was back even, Fister was able to keep the Cardinals off the board for the final three innings of his start. He went six innings, gave up five runs (four earned) on seven hits. He struck out three batters and walked two in the no-decision.
In the seventh inning, the aforementioned Grace made his major league debut. He did not give up a hit in his lone inning of work. The only runner who reached base was Matt Holliday, who worked a two-out walk.
With Blake Treinen pitching in the eighth inning, the Cardinals would get the lead back. After Jon Jay got on base via a one-out walk, Yadier Molina would single to center to move Jay over to third. That would set the stage for Wong to double to left field to give St. Louis a 6-5 lead. Wong went 3-for-4 on the night with a home run, three RBI’s, and a couple excellent defensive plays at second base. Treinen would strike out Jason Heyward with the bases loaded to end the inning, but the damage was already done.
In the ninth inning, Matt Adams would pick up his second RBI of the game on a solo home run to right field against Rafael Martin. His third homer of the season was the key insurance run for St. Louis to make it 7-5. Martin did strike out the side in his one inning of work. Coming into the night, the Cardinals only had six home runs as team. Tonight, they hit three.
In the end, the Nats were not able to get a run against the Cardinals bullpen. The trio of Kevin Siegrist, Seth Maness, and closer Trevor Rosenthal (who got the save) held the Nationals hitless for the final 3.1 innings, striking out four hitters in the process. Siegrist would record the win while Treinen took the loss.
Next Game: The Washington Nationals will be back in action Thursday afternoon at 4:05 PM ET for the rubber game of this series against the Cardinals. You can catch the game on MASN or on MLB Network. Max Scherzer (1-1, 0.83) will get the start for Washington against Michael Wacha (2-0, 1.35).