May 31, 2014, 9:22 AM EST
The Nationals’s offense broke out last night in a 9-2 blowout win over the Texas Rangers, matching their highest run total in a game this month. Today they will look to keep it going and secure a series win in a 12:05 p.m. game.
Doug Fister (2-1, 3.42) will make his fifth start of the season against a team he has faced nine times in his career. Fister’s track record against Texas, however, has not been good. In those games he holds a 5.67 ERA and 1.463 WHIP in 54 total innings. Most of his troubles have come at Texas, though, as 18 of his 34 earned runs were on the road.
Starting for the Rangers is right-hander Nick Tepesch (2-0, 2.95). A 14th round pick in the 2010 draft, Tepesch is in his second major league season.
Updates to come, so please check back…
TEXAS RANGERS at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 12:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: 106.7 FM, 1500 AM, XM 183, MLB.com
Weather: Sunny, 74 degrees, Wind 12 mph LF to RF
CF Denard Span
3B Anthony Rendon
RF Jayson Werth
1B Adam LaRoche
SS Ian Desmond
LF Nate McLouth
2B Danny Espinosa
C Jose Lobaton
RHP Doug Fister
LF Shin-Soo Choo
SS Elvis Andrus
1B Mitch Moreland
3B Adrian Beltre
RF Alex Rios
C Robinson Chirinos
CF Leonys Martin
2B Rougned Odor
RHP Nick Tepesch
HP Laz Diaz
1B Clint Fagan
2B Jeff Nelson (cc)
3B Scott Barry
12:13 p.m. — The first inning was a quick one for Fister who set the Rangers down in order on 17 pitches with three groundouts.
12:29 p.m. — The Nationals got a run in the first inning on a solo homer by Rendon, but probably walked away wishing they had more. Span led off with a walk and was caught trying to steal second, thus preventing Rendon from hitting a two-run shot. Oh well, Nats are up 1-0 with the second up next.
12:35 p.m. — Three up, three down again for Fister. This time he got two looking strikeouts for the second and third outs. Fister has thrown 30 pitches.
12:57 p.m. — The Nationals came out again with some good swings, putting four more runs on the board in the second. Espinosa got them started with a double off the wall with one out. Lobaton then brought him home on a two-run homer over the scoreboard in right field. One out later, Span and Rendon singled to get on. Werth then hit a RBI double that was booted by Choo in left field, scoring a total of two more runs. The lead is now 5-0 after two as Tepesch has thrown 62 pitches.
1:06 p.m. — Another clean frame for Fister, he’s thrown 45 pitches.
1:14 p.m. — Nothing going for the Nats in the bottom of the third. Three up, three down.
1:24 p.m. — The Rangers finally got their first baserunner of the afternoon with one out in the fourth inning, as Andrus hit a line drive double to left field. That was it for Texas, though, as the Nats are still up 5-0. Fister has thrown 65 pitches.
1:38 p.m. — Like runs? The Nationals got three more of them in the bottom of the fourth to make it a 8-0 lead now over the Rangers. All three came on LaRoche’s seventh home run of the season, a bomb to right field.
1:50 p.m. — The Rangers finally got a run in the fifth inning on a bloop RBI double by Odor. Rios walked to lead off – only the second walk Fister has allowed this season so far – and made it to second on a Martin groundout. Odor then lofted a high flyball to shallow right that bounced in between Espinosa and Werth. It’s 8-1 as Fister has thrown 88 pitches.
2:00 p.m. — 1-2-3 for the Nats in the bottom of the fifth. Choo will lead off the sixth.
2:06 p.m. — The Rangers brought another run home in the sixth to make it a 8-2 game. Choo led off with a double and scored one batter later on a Moreland single to right field. Fister is through six on 104 pitches. I’d imagine we see a relief pitcher begin the next inning.
2:34 p.m. — No runs for either team in the seventh. Stammen took over and allowed a double, but that was it. The Nats then went down quickly on a groundout and a pair of Ks to end the frame. Stammen will come back out for the eighth, it appears.
2:56 p.m. — Game over, Nats win 10-2. Instant analysis: http://natsinsider.com/2014/05/31/instant-analysis-nats-10-rangers-2/
COUNTDOWN TO OPENING DAY
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.
*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.
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