The Washington Nationals (46-39) began a three game series tonight against their Beltway rivals, the Baltimore Orioles (44-42) at Camden Yards. It was a well-pitched game between starters Gio Gonzalez and Chris Tillman. The Nats had a 2-1 lead late in the game, but Baltimore would rally to tie it in the bottom of the eighth. Ultimately, it was Jonathan Schoop’s two-out walk-off home run against Tanner Roark in the bottom of the ninth that won the game for the O’s by a final score of 3-2. The Nats have now lost three straight games and their lead over the New York Mets in the NL East is down to two games.
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After the first three innings were scoreless, it was the Orioles who got on the board first in the bottom of the fourth. With two outs, All-Star Adam Jones hit a first pitch curveball over the wall in left center. His 12th home run of the season would give Baltimore a 1-0 lead.
That lead wouldn’t last long as the Nats would rally back to take the lead in the fifth. With two outs and Clint Robinson on third, Tyler Moore hit a double down the right field line to tie the game at one. Then, Michael Taylor would drive in Moore with a base hit to right field that put the Nationals in front 2-1.
The Jones home run would be the only mistake Gonzalez would make all night. The left-hander went six innings, gave up one run on six hits, struck out five, and walked three on 106 pitches (67 strikes). It was the first time that Nationals’ pitchers would walk more than two batters in a game in 20 games.
Gonzalez would come back out to pitch the seventh, but Matt Williams took him out of the game after he walked Jimmy Paredes to begin the inning. Aaron Barrett would enter a game for the first time since June 11. While Jose Lobaton’s passed ball allowed Paredes to reach second, Barrett would strike out the next two batters and get Manny Machado to pop out to short to get out of the inning.
One inning later, the Orioles would find a way to tie the game. It began when pinch hitter Chris Parmelee hit an infield single against Casey Janssen. After Adam Jones lined out to third, Williams went to Matt Thornton to face Matt Wieters. Thornton would not get the job done as Wieters hit a ball into the gap in right center for a RBI double that tied the game at two.
With the score tied in the bottom of the ninth, Tanner Roark would enter the game for the Nats. He would get the first two batters out via strikeouts, but Jonathan Schoop hit a 2-2 slider over the left field wall for the game winning home run. It was Schoop’s fifth home run of the season.
Next Game: The Washington Nationals and Baltimore Orioles will be back in action tomorrow night at Camden Yards. You can catch the game at 7:15 PM ET on FOX. Jordan Zimmermann (7-5, 3.04 ERA) gets the start for the Nats against Miguel Gonzalez (7-5, 3.87 ERA) for the Orioles.