Washington Nationals Drop Series Finale to Blue Jays, 8-0


Wednesday night’s series finale against the Toronto Blue Jays was a disappointment for the Washington Nationals.  On a night when Taylor Jordan (0-2, 8.44), filled in for the injured and struggling Stephen Strasburg, he was beaten around by a fearsome Toronto lineup. Meanwhile, the Nats lineup was blanked by Jays’ starter Mark Buehrle (7-4, 4.35). With the loss, the Nationals lost their second consecutive series and are 1-5 in their last six games, all of which have been played against sub .500 teams.

The Nats fell into a hole right away against Toronto.  Despite pitching well in relief of Strasburg in Cincinnati, Taylor Jordan was unable to sustain his success on the mound tonight. Toronto scored four runs against him right out of the gate.

Former Mets star Jose Reyes walked to lead off the game and Josh Donaldson doubled to center field to put runners on second and third with no outs.  Jose Bautista and Chris Colabello followed with consecutive RBI singles to give the Jays a 2-0 lead before Jordan had even retired a batter.

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Following a Dioner Navarro groundout, Justin Smoak would score Bautista with a groundball of his own to increase the Nats deficit to three.  Kevin Pillar would cap off the Jays’ first inning scoring with a base hit to score Colabello and drive the lead up to 4-0.

Jordan appeared to settle in after that, firing two scoreless innings before the top of the fourth, when Reyes increased the lead to 5-0 with a RBI single.  In the top of the sixth inning, with Jordan still on the mound, the Jays scratched out two more runs on a Ryan Goins RBI double and Reyes’ second RBI single of the night.

While Jordan struggled in allowing seven earned runs, he did provide the bullpen some relief by pitching six innings.  The Jays would score their eighth and final run of the night in the top of the ninth inning, when Bautista hit a solo shot off Taylor Hill into the bullpen in left center for his eighth home run of the season.

For the Blue Jays, starter Mark Buehrle was absolutely dominant tonight.  On a cold and somewhat rainy night, the Nats lineup was unable to generate anything against the left-hander, who fired a complete game shutout while allowing just six hits.  While Buehrle struck out only two Nats, he induced weak contact almost all night. The Blue Jays pitching staff, which ranks 28th in baseball with a 4.50 ERA, held the Nationals lineup to just five runs in 26 innings this series.

Next Game: The Nationals (29-24) will begin a four game series against the Chicago Cubs (27-23) at Nationals park tomorrow night.  Gio Gonzalez (4-2, 4.73) will look to collect his fifth win of the year, while Cubs starter Jake Arrieta (4-4, 3.18) will look to continue the recent domination against the Nats lineup.  The game will begin at 7:05 PM ET and can be seen on MASN.

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