Washington Nationals: We’ve arrived at the low point of the season
We have arrived at the low point of the Washington Nationals season. Up to this point you could have picked any number of events to call the bottom of the barrel. Nine games below .500 in early June. Being shut out three times in the first six games. Being swept at home by the Milwaukee Brewers, then later by the Los Angeles Dodgers. Or any moment you decided to look at how lengthy the Injured List was.
All of it pales in comparison to the grand slam Max Scherzer surrendered to a relief pitcher for the San Diego Padres. Yes, Daniel Camerena, a relief pitcher, took Mad Max donna.
Yeah, you read that right. Camarena collected his first big league hit off Scherzer, and it was a four run homer none the less. Camarena’s earned run average entering the game 10.13 and his batting average leaving it was .500.
The Washington Nationals have a new low point for the 2021 season.
Not sure which is worse, having to hear the phrase Slam Diego again, or watching the best pitcher on the Nationals team turn an eight run advantage into a nail biter.
The home run ball has plagued Scherzer this year, literally from the first pitch of the season. This game against the Padres was going to show those who selected All-Stars (and left Scherzer off the list) what they were missing. Through three innings everyone was following the script. Then the wheels fell off. And rolled down the hill. Never to be seen again.
The final outcome of the game was just a footnote. The home run to the pitcher, the blown eight run lead, the chinks in the armor were crippling. Exposed was the best pitcher on the team, leading into a series where the Nationals will run Paolo Espino and most likely Jon Lester to the mound in two of three games against the San Francisco Giants. Espino hasn’t pitched more than five innings in this career and Lester can’t seem to get to five innings these days.
The Nationals needed more from their ace, especially as they limp into the All-Star break. What could have been winners of three out of four, quickly turned into losers of six of eight. Done in by a reliever hitting a grand slam.