The Nationals came alive in all phases of the game Friday night against the Rockies as it was easily their best performance of the year in a 10 to 5 victory. The team rallied for 19 hits as well as an additional 4 walks, leading to plenty of traffic on the basepaths for Washington.
The Nats got started early and often against Rockies' starter José Ureña. Leftfielder got the rare start in the leadoff spot in the lineup and promptly got the game underway with a home run to left field, his first of the season. Jeimer Candelario also got a rare start in the two spot and had to follow up Call's blast with one of his own, a long shot over the tall fence in right-center field. 8 pitches into the game the Nats were already up 2-0, something they had been on the wrong side of a couple times already this season. They would go on to add 2 runs in innings 2, 3, 5 and 8 to cap off their 10 run performance.
MacKenzie Gore got the win on the mound for the Nationals, and he was arguably more impressive in this performance than he was in his stellar first start against Atlanta. Gore would go 6 innings allowing 2 runs on 5 hits, with 2 walks and 6 strikeouts. Gore did a really good job getting ahead of hitters and while he sputtered at times, did even better limiting the damage in a very hitter-friendly park. The young lefty is now responsible for both Nationals wins on the season.
Nationals Game Review
What went wrong?
- Honestly, not much went wrong. MacKenzie Gore struggled with his command a bit still, as he had 15 of the 24 batters he faced in two strike counts but was only able to put away 6 via the strikeout due to ineffective pitches, but it is hard to argue with the result and most resulted in outs anyways.
- Erasmo Ramirez struggled tonight as he allowed 3 runs on 3 hits in just 11 pitches before being replaced by Hunter Harvey with one out, but Harvey was able to finish the inning and the Nats were able to respond on offense. It was unreasonable to believe Ramirez was going to have a clean inning each time out and I am not concerned long term.
- Lane Thomas was thrown out stealing, but the Nationals at least attempted to steal. Victor Robles had the team's first clean stolen base of the season earlier in the game (a steal without needing a review).
- Luis Garcia had to leave the game with a hamstring injury, but early reports are that it is not serious and shouldn't require a trip to the injured list.
What went right?
A lot went right for the Nationals, which was a nice change of pace.
- The entire lineup had a hit, with most of the lineup having multiple hits.
- CJ Abrams had three hits, including two triples and three RBIs
- Victor Robles and Lane Thomas also had three hits each, and 7-8-9 in the order had 9 of the 19 hits in the game.
- Gore was able to get through six innings thanks to a couple of quick, bounce back innings.
- Hunter Harvey and Kyle Finnegan had better performances than their last time out, including a 1-2-3 9th inning for Finnegan.
- There is plenty more but the Nationals looked good in all three phases of the game which was sorely needed after the week of baseball they have had. Here are some of the highlights via the Nationals twitter account:
Washington Nationals Record: 2-6
When is the next Nationals game?
The Nationals are back in action tonight for game 3 of 4 in Colorado. Game time is at 8:10pm EST. Trevor Williams will make his second start for the Nationals after going 5 innings and allowing 3 runs in his first start of the year. He has a career 5.32 ERA against the Rockies. He will be opposed by Austin Gomber of the Rockies, who went 6 innings allowing 3 runs in his first start in a loss against the San Diego Padres.