The Pittsburgh Pirates and Washington Nationals completed a four-game series tonight, and this game went in favor of Washington. The Nationals used stellar pitching and a hot offense to take this series three games to four in a 7-1 victory. Pittsburgh struggles get worse and worse with each passing game.
Max Scherzer was returning from injury tonight and only lasted four innings on the mound. During that time, he would allow one run on four hits with three strikeouts and one walk. That lone run came in the third inning on a 380ft. home run by Adam Frazier. This would be all the offense that the Pirates offense could muster on the night.
Washington struck early with two runs in the first inning off of Buccos starter Steven Brault. A fielding error by Josh Bell allowed the first run to score, while the second came on a Howie Kendrick groundout to third. Brault would work six innings and strikeout four, walk one, and allow seven hits.
After a scoreless inning of relief from Richard Rodriguez, Chris Stratton entered the game in the eighth and that is when things got out of hand. The bullpen has been heavily stressed this series, so Stratton was pretty much a sacrificial lamb. During those two innings he would allow five runs on seven hits with two walks and three strikeouts. Not exactly the numbers this team needs to have a chance at mounting a comeback.
Pittsburgh will welcome the Cincinnati Reds to town tomorrow night to begin a three-game series. Last time these two teams met the benches emptied, punches were thrown, and suspensions were handed out. At this point it may take another fight to spark any interest in this team from a fan base that checked out a long time ago.
Record vs. Nationals: 3-4
Record vs. N.L. East: 9-17
Record at Home: 26-37
Overall Record: 52-75
Let’s Go Bucs!