May 29, 2015; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg throws against the Cincinnati Reds in the first inning at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports
Coming off of a big series win at Wrigley Field, the Washington Nationals were looking to get this series against the Cincinnati Reds back on track. However, they leave this game with more concerns than they would like to have. Those concerns effect both the lineup and the starting rotation. Now, the Nats will need to win the next two games to extend their series winning streak to a franchise record ten series.
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First, for the offense, even with the injury to Stephen Strasburg, Taylor Jordan did just enough to keep this team in the game. Plus, they had chances against Anthony DeSclafani and the Reds bullpen to drive in runs. However, they went 3-for-12 with runners in scoring position and stranded 13 runners on base.
While the Nats have been one of the best offenses in the National League, they have had trouble scoring runs of late. Ever since their 8-6 ten inning win against the Yankees on May 18, they have scored three runs or fewer in six of their last seven games. It’s a long season and every team will have collective slumps like this, but it is something that should be monitored to see if the offense gets back on track.
However, this game will be remembered for Strasburg leaving the game due to a left trap muscle injury. He had an issue with the muscle in his neck, which according to Strasburg, started affecting him after the opening inning:
While Strasburg was hitting 97 miles per hour on the radar gun in the first inning when he gave up the towering home run to Joey Votto, the mechanics still are an issue for the 26-year-old who has not made it past the fifth inning in each of his last five starts.
As for the bullpen, Aaron Barrett and Blake Treinen did struggle last night. Barrett gave up the base hit to Cozart, which the run ended up being charged to Jordan. Treinen, on the other hand, was the one who gave up the home run to Todd Frazier in the bottom of the seventh that made it 5-2. Here are more of my takeaways from last night’s 5-2 loss to the Reds: