Washington Nationals: Takeaways from California

rjuckett
June 6, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Washington Nationals relief pitcher Koda Glover (30) reacts during the ninth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
June 6, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Washington Nationals relief pitcher Koda Glover (30) reacts during the ninth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /
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FUNDAMENTALS ARE PROBLEM

From not laying down needed bunts to turning easy double plays when the Nats lose they beat themselves.

Yes, the bullpen and first-pitch strikes are not on speaking terms. Sure, some nights you tip your cap to the other dugout. Those things happen and there is not a blessed thing you can do.

Let’s go through a sequence from the loss Wednesday to the Dodgers. On an afternoon where Kershaw resembled a human, the Nats carried a tenuous 1-0 lead into the sixth.

Although there was nothing you can do as a team about Corey Seager’s two-out solo blast to dead center, dropping strike three to Adrian Gonzalez and letting him reach is inexcusable. Second time in two days the Dodgers reached on a strikeout.

Having Gonzalez move into scoring position on a passed ball that never left the dirt cost the Nats a potential sweep. Jose Lobaton is there for his defense and did not execute.

Later, Harper reached on a fielder’s choice that eventually forced Trea Turner at home. Although Turner nearly beat it the pickle play, Harper never left the bag and stayed put. He should have put himself in scoring position as the tying run.

These are nitpicky, but it is the little things like above that win championships. For as good as the Nats are, these stretches of lapses are maddening.

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