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Instant Analysis: Phillies 5, Nats 4

Sep 14, 2013, 10:31 PM EDT

Photo by USA Today Photo by USA Today

Game in a nutshell: The Nationals entered Saturday with a significant challenge in Cole Hamels, even with the reeling Phillies playing behind him. They were baffled by the lefty for the better part of six innings, but did manage three runs off of him. He gave up one in the first and two in the seventh, with five scoreless frames in between. The Nats got four total runs off Philly, however, it was not enough to offset a rocky evening by Gio Gonzalez and a rough inning by Ian Krol. The Phillies scored four runs in the fifth inning off Gonzalez to take the initial lead, and the Nats just couldn’t complete the comeback. The loss is Washington’s first since Sept. 6 and is a costly one as the Reds beat the Brewers earlier in the day. The Nats will now try and make it two of three against the Phils on Sunday as they sit 5 1/2 games out of the NL Wild Card.

Pitching lowlight: Gonzalez wasn’t particularly sharp all evening, despite him beginning with four scoreless frames, and it caught up to him big time in the fifth inning. The Phillies pushed four runs across off Gio in the fifth, on a solo home run by John Mayberry and a bases-clearing double by Carlos Ruiz. Mayberry led the inning off with his smash into the bullpen in left field. Ruiz hit his double with the bases loaded and two outs, sailing a line drive over Werth’s head and off the wall. Gonzalez finished with nine hits and four runs allowed through six innings pitched. He also gave up two walks and the homer.

Hitting highlight: After coming up with next to nothing off Hamels for six innings, the Nats finally got something going in the seventh. Scott Hairston, who has had a great history against the lefty, led off with a single and was followed by Denard Span and Ryan Zimmerman singles to load the bases. They got one run on an Ian Desmond sacrifice fly to center field off Justin De De Fratus and another two on a Bryce Harper bloop single to center field off of Cesar Jimenez. Three runs in the inning was the final result, although they probably hoped for more. With Harper on third and two outs, Ramos took an inside curveball that looked off the plate, but home plate umpire Jim Joyce called it a strike to end the inning.

Key stat: Denard Span extended his hit streak to 25 games and also notched a career-high three stolen bases. That’s only the second time a Nationals player has stolen three bases in a game since 2005. The other was Nyjer Morgan on July 22, 2010.

Up next: The Nationals and Phillies close this series out with a Sunday matinee. Jordan Zimmermann (17-8, 3.36) will pitch for Washington with Tyler Cloyd (2-4, 4.56) taking the ball for Philly.

  1. David Proctor - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:32 PM

    Thanks a lot, Joyce. Needless to say, tomorrow is a must-win game, no doubt about it.

    • Manassas Nats Fan - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:36 PM

      I blame Gio and Krol a hell of lot more than Joyce.

      Gio was worthless in the 5th, krol worse in the 7th

  2. nats128 - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:32 PM

    Nothing to be ashamed of. Unfortunately Gio just didnt have it tonight.

    • Manassas Nats Fan - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:38 PM

      Through 4 he was fine. In the 6th fine.

      The 5th he kept throwing fast balls with no movement right down themiddle.

  3. naterialguy - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    boooooooo hoooooo

  4. NatsLady - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:37 PM

    OK, back to where we were. Just, get ‘em tomorrow.

  5. nats128 - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:37 PM

    Just wonder with Zimmerman leading off with a double if Davey could have been more creative to get that tie before thinking of the win.

    • Manassas Nats Fan - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:40 PM

      The hitters just needed to get a single. With 3,4 and. 5 batters up just needed a hit, and they failed to do the job.

    • pchuck69 - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:55 PM

      Expecting sound managing from Davey is expecting a lot.

      And the selfishness of Werth’s at-bat is one of the things most wrong with this team. Follow that with Desmond’s selfish one. This team is loaded with selfish hitters.

      • David Proctor - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:58 PM

        That’s one of the more ridiculous things I’ve read. I see guys trying to move runners all the time. Desi was even trying to go the other way, the opposite of being selfish. Werth thought he had a pitch to drive. If you think you get a pitch to drive out, you shouldn’t be trying to force the issue the other way. It was an inside pitch. What did you want him to do exactly?

        C’mon.

      • Manassas Nats Fan - Sep 14, 2013 at 11:13 PM

        Not selfish, just not properly hit.

  6. David Proctor - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:41 PM

    I don’t understand those criticizing Werth. I haven’t really seen it here, but I’ve seen it elsewhere. Werth thought he got a pitch to drive. The pitch dived inside at the last second, jamming him. If the ball stays where he thought it was going to be, it’s game over. That was a matter of centimeters between a home run and a flyout. Papelbon just beat him. It happens. The problem is that we don’t have time for it to be happening now.

    • Manassas Nats Fan - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:42 PM

      But the key is it didnt. He went 2 months not misidentify pitches. That one he did.

      • nats6245 - Sep 14, 2013 at 11:19 PM

        But the key is it didnt. He went 2 months not misidentify pitches. That one he did.

        Help me out here — if he doesn’t misidentify pitches, how is he only batting .323? Wouldn’t he want to be hitting well enough to break records like the Ted Williams batting average or Joe Dimaggio hitting streak?

    • pchuck69 - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:57 PM

      You’re losing though. You follow that strategy when the game is tied. You have to get that tying run home more than trying to win the game.

      That was selfish.

      • boteman - Sep 15, 2013 at 12:39 AM

        Home runs move the tying run home just fine, and do a LOT more. Jayson Werth is the best hitter the Nationals have right now, plus he has been hot recently. It doesn’t get any better than that.

        And parroting this “being selfish” nonsense that some talking head on the radio must have put into your head is not helpful at all.

  7. Manassas Nats Fan - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:45 PM

    2 for 16 RISP been along time since we have been that pathetic.

  8. David Proctor - Sep 14, 2013 at 10:50 PM

    This isn’t by any means a death sentence, but it makes it significantly harder down the road.

    We have to win tomorrow, get at least 2/3 from the Braves, sweep the Marlins and win maybe 5/6 against the Cardinals and D’backs (which would in all likelihoood mean a sweep in Arizona). That would put us at 90 wins.

    • Manassas Nats Fan - Sep 14, 2013 at 11:15 PM

      Basically we can afford no losses. We ad waytoo many losses earlier to aford to lose now.

  9. Ghost of Steve M. - Sep 14, 2013 at 11:01 PM

    Davey has been rolling the dice right for awhile but it didn’t work tonight.

    Book says you go for the tie at home. With Werth up its understandable you don’t play small ball.

    It didn’t work but I liked the fight till the last out.

  10. David Proctor - Sep 14, 2013 at 11:06 PM

    You’re supposed to pull inside pitches and hit outside pitches the other way. Werth got an elevated pitch inside, so he pulled it. If the ball doesn’t cut at the last second, it’s a home run. I seriously don’t understand what you think Werth should have done. Did you expect him to drop a bunt? That’s just ridiculous.

    Nobody was being selfish.

    • pchuck69 - Sep 14, 2013 at 11:11 PM

      Or he could have let the at-bat play out like Zimmerman did, you know, he was the runner standing on second.

      An out on the first pitch is always wrong, by definition. In that situation, it’s even worse and, yes, it’s selfish.

      • pchuck69 - Sep 14, 2013 at 11:13 PM

        And it was BACK TO BACK, one pitch outs in the bottom of the 9th. That’s inexcusable.

  11. Manassas Nats Fan - Sep 14, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    We had 4 runs we rarely loss when scoring that much.

    Gio’s 5th inning was pivotable.

    He claimed only one bad pitch. Wrong at least 8 bad pitches that inning.

    The 4 passes in the middle. Ruizvwas middle height though outer half (bad as we were playing to hit left)..

    The 4 balls to Utley were bad.

  12. Steady Eddie - Sep 14, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    Ghost sorry your comment may have disappeared. I was trying to hit reply and write something complimentary when I hit report comment by accident. Much too easy to do on the tiny screen of a phone, And it really is a fault of the site formatting that they don’t have another Dialog box that asks are you sure?

    Yet another thing that needs to be fixed and now In my old age I can’t remember what it was in your comment that I wanted to reply to

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Sep 15, 2013 at 8:48 AM

      Thanks Steady Eddie. I think it reappeared ;)

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