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Instant analysis: Nats 11, Phillies 0

Aug 2, 2014, 10:25 PM EST

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GAME IN A NUTSHELL: How about we just do “Game in a word” tonight? The answer is: Rout.

OK, a few more details than that. The Nationals annihilated the Phillies pitching staff, starting with A.J. Burnett, who let six of the 11 batters he faced reach safely, capped by Anthony Rendon’s 3-run homer in the bottom of the second. Then after throwing his next pitch — outside to Jayson Werth — Burnett said something to Chris Guccione, prompting the plate ump to immediately eject him (and later Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg) from the game.

That put more than a little bit of stress on the Philadelphia bullpen, which was nowhere close to up to the challenge. The Nationals pounded Phillipe Aumont for six more runs, opening up a staggering 11-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth, with all eight starting position players having delivered at least one RBI by that point. The only batter who didn’t drive in a run: Jordan Zimmermann, who would have if not for a nice catch by Marlon Byrd at the wall in right-center.

Speaking of Zimmermann, he was on cruise control with such a large lead, tossing seven scoreless innings and not giving the Phillies a chance to even think about the possibility of a comeback. The Nationals never looked back, sealing this one with ease after a couple of tough losses to begin the series.

HITTING HIGHLIGHT: There are no shortage of highlights when you score 11 runs, but let’s focus on the biggest hit of them all, and something we hadn’t seen in quite awhile: A Nationals home run. It had been 85 innings since anybody in a curly W helmet sent one over the fence, so Rendon’s blast in the bottom of the second was a most welcome development. He launched Burnett’s pitch into the Red Porch area beyond the wall in left-center, giving the Nationals a 5-0 lead and ultimately sending Burnett to the showers early (and quite upset).

PITCHING HIGHLIGHT: Lost amid the offensive fireworks was a dominating pitching performance by Zimmermann, who needed one. After a less-than-sharp return from his biceps strain in Colorado, then a very good start in Miami that was undone by the Nationals’ bullpen late, Zimmermann made sure the Phillies never got close to sniffing a comeback. Once given the big lead, he retired 11 batters in a row, departing after seven scoreless innings without issuing a walk. This was the ace-like performance the Nats wanted to see from Zimmermann.

STREAK WATCH: With his leadoff single in the first inning, Denard Span reached base for the 28th consecutive game, the longest active streak in the majors. His on-base percentage during this streak is .460.

KEY STAT: The Nationals were 3-for-3 on stolen-base attempts tonight and are now 61-for-71 on the season. Their 86 percent success rate is easily best in MLB.

UP NEXT: The Nationals need a win Sunday to salvage a 4-game series split, and they’ll have to beat Cole Hamels to do it. Stephen Strasburg is on the mound for the Nats, with first pitch scheduled for 1:35 p.m.

  1. David Proctor - Aug 2, 2014 at 10:29 PM

    If Treinan can throw that slider/curve consistently, watch the F out.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 2, 2014 at 10:31 PM

      David, were you part of my discussion a few weeks ago on Treinen reliever vs starter? Velo vs. Velo K9 vs. K9

      • David Proctor - Aug 2, 2014 at 10:36 PM

        I was. I still don’t like the contact they make on his fastball. Two hits tonight even. But potential is undoubtedly there

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 2, 2014 at 10:40 PM

        Tough to barrel up 98 and BABIP worked against him. Have to love the 2 Ks. I think he can help Nats more right now in the pen has been ny point and without writing 3,000 words again there are multiple reasons why and Rizzo wizened up.

      • nats128 - Aug 2, 2014 at 10:42 PM

        Can you give it to us in the cliffnotes 1,000 word version? 😉

  2. Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 2, 2014 at 10:31 PM

    “davecydell – Aug 2, 2014 at 9:25 PM
    will MW have the guts ?”

    It will be Rizzo’s call as that’s a personnel decision with MW’s input.

  3. stoatva - Aug 2, 2014 at 10:47 PM

    Can’t tell you how freaked I was to get home and hear the Phillies announcers broadcasting my baseball game. On the other hand, if they can deliver an 11-0 Nats win every time I could learn to live with it.

  4. stoatva - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:01 PM

    Padres tie the Braves in the seventh.

  5. nats128 - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:01 PM


  6. Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:02 PM

    Joe Seamhead, make sure you watch the A’s highlights on OF throws to homeplate.

  7. Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:07 PM

    Eric Byrnes calling a throw from the outfield a Flip Throw. That is interesting.

  8. rayvil01 - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:07 PM

    Ghost, Cabrera be a good move based on early returns. Can play.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:10 PM

      His stats said he’d be an upgrade over Espi. So far so good. He’s a contact guy.

  9. David Proctor - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:09 PM

    Now that’s funny

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:11 PM

      That I believe as I was listening to my radio I said to myself he threw that outside on purpose. LOL

  10. David Proctor - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:12 PM

    Gattis costs the Braves yet another run

  11. NatsNut - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:19 PM

    If you go back and watch the replays of the ejection, watch Werth. His reaction is by far the best part.

  12. Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 2, 2014 at 11:20 PM

    “@ZuckermanCSN: Rendon said fans were yelling at him to go for the cycle after single, double, homer: “I didn’t want to. That meant I’d have to run more.””

  13. adcwonk - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:04 AM

    Braves get bases loaded in the top of the 12th.

    And don’t score.

    • adcwonk - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:11 AM

      And in the 11th, Bonifacio got doubled off second base on a fly ball to center.

      • adcwonk - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:19 AM

        And in the bottom of the 12th, Kimbrel walks three and then gives up a single to a guy hitting .218

        Padres win, Nats now 2-1/2 up

        Nice evening!

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:24 AM

        Glad someone was watching! Kimbrel threw almost 40 pitches. Freddy lost his f***** mind.

      • adcwonk - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:29 AM

        Yep — as NatsLady wrote in the other thread: Freddi must have panicked. Wow.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:32 AM

        Panicked? He lost his f***** mind. That’s your closer not a starter. How do you let this guy go 2 innings and almost 40 pitches.

      • adcwonk - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:36 AM

        We’re all right. He panicked, which caused him to lose his f@#$ mind.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:41 AM

        The most pitches Soriano threw this year was 27 and that was in 1 inning and MW rested him after that for 3 games. Just saying.

      • adcwonk - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:49 AM

        Nice stat — thanks for digging that up.

  14. Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:19 AM

    Can you believe Freddy Gonzalez. I think Kimbrel’s arm is ready to fall off.

  15. Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 3, 2014 at 1:19 AM






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