Washington Nationals pitchers tie another record, in grand fashion
Intuition is one thing, facts are another. When a Washington Nationals hitter comes to the plate with the bases loaded, we’ve become accustomed to accept he’ll probably fail. Entering Sunday’s game, the Nationals were hitting an even .200 with the bases loaded, with a horrendous .564 OPS.
Entering Sunday’s game, Nationals pitchers have allowed opposing hitters to bat to the tune of a .345 average when the bases are loaded. 13 grand slams have pushed the OPS to 1.018.
Thoughts against facts.
Was there any doubt about what was going to happen with Ryne Harper loaded the bases in the bottom of the sixth inning against the Cincinnati Reds? The only question was how many runs were going to score. Okay, so I’ve become a cynical Nationals fan this year.
Reds batter, Kyle Farmer, obliged, by hitting the 14th grand slam against Nationals pitching this year. If you think this is a lot, it is. In fact, the total ties the Detroit Tigers 1996 pitching staff, for the most grand slams surrendered in a season.
Can the Nats get through the next six games without giving up a blast with the bases loaded, and rewriting the record books? I sure hope so.
With the grand slam Ryne Harper gave up to Kyle Farmer, the 2021 Nationals pitching staff has now tied a dubious record.
This Nationals pitching staff has already given up more home runs than any other since the team moved from Montreal in 2005. Patrick Corbin leads the league with his 36 home runs allowed. Nine Nationals pitchers have given up double-digit home runs this year. For comparison sake, just five Red Sox pitchers have given up double-digit home runs thus far, and they face the designated hitter in the American League.
There won’t be too many details over the next six games to keep your eye out for. Juan Soto and his push for the batting title (and 100 career home runs). The race to see who leads the team in home runs and runs batted in this season, as Soto and Bell are neck and neck.
Another aspect to watch for, is whether or not the Nats give up a grand slam, pushing past the 1996 Tigers, for worst pitchers when the sacks are packed.