Dodgers 0 8 0
Nationals 4 11 0
WP- Barrett (2-0)
LP- Greinke (5-1)
HR- Rendon (5), Espinosa (4)
After a three hour and 17 minute rain delay, the Dodgers came back and still couldn’t muster a single run against the Nationals on Monday night/Tuesday morning. What is even more frustrating is that Zack Greinke was dealt the loss even though he only pitched three innings. Greinke definitely did not have his best stuff tonight, and I’m not sure if it had anything to do with the rain which was pelting him from the get go. He allowed a two-run homerun in the first inning to Anthony Rendon, and that would have been enough for the Nats to finish off the Dodgers who failed to score at all.
The Nats scored again on another two-run homerun in the eighth inning off of rookie Pedro Baez who was making his first Major League appearance. Espinosa drilled a two-run shot, and that would be the extent of the runs scored for the Nats who took away the victory after almost 6 and 1/2 hours including the rain delay.
The Dodgers bullpen was again inconsistent. Brian Wilson pitched himself into a bases loaded jam, but was able to wriggle his way out. Brandon League pitched very well again for two shutout innings, and his ERA now stands at a eye popping 1.96. My have times changed.
The defense didn’t make any errors on this rain soaked night, but it was the offense that was all washed up. Carl Crawford had three hits, and Kemp collected two as well. Dee Gordon, the lead-off spark, went 0-for-4 as did Adrian Gonzalez. Jordan Zimmermann began the shutout, and the rest of the Nats’ bullpen continued the zeroes.
Zack Greinke has an uncharacteristic bad first inning to begin the game. Denard Span opens with a double to the left field corner where Carl Crawford briefly bobbles the ball. Then Anthony Rendon proceeds to hit a two-run homerun that carries over the center field wall, and before an out is even recorded the Dodgers are down by two runs. Werth flies out to left. Adam LaRoche lines a single into center field. Ian Desmond grounds out sharply to CC in left for the second out. The long inning finally ends as Greinke strikes out Danny Espinosa, but Zack had to make 26 pitches in the frame.
Zimmermann blows away Matt Kemp in the second, and that’s Kemp’s 30th whiff of the season. Andre Ethier dunks a one-out single to center field. Juan Uribe hits a broken bat single to left field, and the Dodgers have men at first and second with one out for Miguel Olivo. Olivo strikes out swinging. Greinke grounds out to first, and the Dodgers strand two men.
Zimmermann singles off the leg of Greinke with two outs in the bottom of the second. Greinke didn’t even flinch, but the ball bounces into left field. The inning ends on a comebacker by Span.
In the third, Crawford singles with one out. Hanley grounds into the inning ending double play, and the Dodgers can’t muster much off
Greinke walks Rendon this time around to begin the bottom of the third. Werth grounds into a force, but LaRoche singles. Desmond hits a comebacker, and Greinke calmly turns and initiates the double play 1-4-3.
Matt Kemp chops a single to left with one out in the top of the fourth. With Ethier at-bat, Matt Kemp is mowed down trying to steal second base. Ethier strikes out thereafter.
Before the bottom of the fourth inning commences, the groundskeepers finally roll out the tarp after rain has been pummeling Nationals Park all night.
Once the game restarts over three hours later…Brandon League will take over pitching duties from Zack Greinke who went 3 innings and allowed 2 runs on 5 hits with a strikeout and a walk on 54 pitches. League will face Danny Espinosa to start things off…again. League strikes him out! Nate McLouth flies out to left. Sandy Leon also strikes out. Suddenly Brandon League is effective. Who would have thought?
Aaron Barrett replaces Jordan Zimmermann for the fifth inning. Zimmermann pitched 4 shutout innings and allowed 5 hits with 3 strikeouts and no walks on 55 pitches. Uribe, Olivo, and League all go down in order with Olivo and League both striking out versus Barrett.
Scott Hairston is pinch-hitting for Barrett in the bottom of the fifth, and he singled to deep short. Hanley tries to dive and throw him out from the hole, but he comes up looking like he hurt his hand again. He stays in the game, but that’s not a picture I like to see. Span singles. Rendon grounds into a double play, and it’s nearly a 5-4-3 triple play after Gordon tries to shoot it over to first in time. Werth grounds out to short, and League works his way out of the jam.
Jerry Blevins, a lefty, will come out of the Nats’ bullpen next for the sixth inning. Carl Crawford comes up with his second hit of the night, a single up the middle, with one out in the inning. Hanley strikes out. Gonzo strikes out.
Chris Withrow is in for the bottom of the sixth. He walks Desmond with one out. That’s Withrow’s 13th walk of the season already as he continues to struggle with his command. Espinosa strikes out. Desmond steals second with McLouth batting who then strikes out thereafter to end the inning.
Drew Storen is the next Washington pitcher, and he takes the mound in the top of the seventh. Kemp leads off with a double to left field, but the Dodgers cannot muster anything else as Ethier, Uribe, and Olivo all make outs.
Here comes Brian Wilson in for the bottom of the seventh. Leon leads off with a single, but Wilson comes back to strike out pinch-hitter Zach Walters. Span doubles to left, and Leon ends up at third. Still one out. Somehow Wilson gets Rendon to swing on his slider, and he goes down on strikes. Then he walks Werth. It’s very hard to watch Wilson pitch this season. It almost seems like he is deflated and giving up. The bases are now loaded. Wilson rears back and strikes out LaRoche, and Wilson ends up striking out the side…no really. He also made 29 pitches.
Tyler Clippard is the fifth pitcher of the night for the Nationals. Chone Figgins strikes out. McClouth makes a fine sliding catch into the left field wall on a foul ball down the line hit by Gordon for the second out. McClouth will exit the game with what appears to be a hand injury. Crawford singles for his third hit of the night, but Hanley comes up empty again as he flies out to end the inning.
Pedro Baez, who was just recalled by the Dodgers from AA-Chattanooga, will make his MLB debut for the Dodgers in the bottom of the eighth. Ian Desmond promptly smacks a base hit to left field. Danny Espinosa than crushes a two-run homerun to right field, and the Nats now lead 4-0. Kevin Frandsen strikes out. Leon flies out to center. Tyler Moore strikes out.
Rafael Soriano will come in to pitch the top of the ninth and try to finally put this game to bed. Gonzo is retired on a fly ball on the first pitch he sees. Kemp strikes out. Ethier grounds out.
The Dodgers drop to 18-15 on the season. Tomorrow Clayton Kershaw makes his long awaited return to the mound for a 4:05 p.m. start. You don’t want to miss that!