The Nationals made there way out to LA on Monday to face the powerhouse Dodgers where things started well, but one mistake turned the game upside-down.
In the second inning following a Joey Meneses single and Corey Dickerson double, CJ Abrams singled to right field for the first run of the game, giving the Nationals the early lead. The single was Abrams' hardest hit ball of his career, with an exit velocity of 112.5 MPH.
Unfortunately for Abrams and the Nationals, there was another side to the story as a costly error in the 5th inning from Abrams led to the Dodgers scoring 6 unearned runs, including a three run homerun by JD Martinez to cap off the Dodgers' rally. Because the play would have resulted in the final out of the inning, all of the runs were unearned against Nationals' starter Trevor Williams.
If it weren't for that error, Williams likely would have had his best start as a National as he was cruising to that point. Ultimately, Williams finished the game going 5 innings allowing 6 unearned runs on 6 hits with 3 walks and 3 strikeouts. Thaddeus Ward and Erasmo Ramirez had nice bounceback performances to pitch 3 scoreless innings in relief following Williams, allowing zero baserunners in the process.
The Nationals scattered 6 hits on offense and only struck out 4 times in total, but the could not make the most of their limited opportunities and fell to the Dodgers by a score of 6 to 1 in the series opener.
Washington Nationals Record: 23-31
When is the next Nationals game?
The Nationals get another shot at the Dodgers tonight as they will send Jake Irvin (1-2, 5.32 ERA) to the mound against Dodgers' RHP Tony Gonsolin (2-1, 1.82 ERA). Irvin has struggled as of late after getting off to a strong start to his MLB career, particularly with is ability, or lack thereof, to throw strikes. Staying in the zone will be key for Irvin to get back on track against a deep Dodgers' lineup.