The Nationals couldn’t get past that 4-run 1st inning; #Nats had their chances!

The Washington Nationals got started off well in the 1st inning when Bryce Harper planted a John Lackey pitch deep into rightfield to get the scoring started at 1-0.

Edwin Jackson‘s 1st inning did not go as planned with four runs given up, and it could have been a lot worse as Bryce Harper’s defense got Jackson an out when he nailed Willson Contreras going 1st to 3rd on a single on a 97.8 bullet Harper threw to Anthony Rendon at 3rd base.

The Nationals clawed back into the game in the 4th inning and scored two runs to cut the Cubs’ lead down to 4-3. ┬áThe Nationals had their chances in the top of the 5th inning with the score still at 4-3 with Wilmer Difo on 2nd base, and Bryce Harper struck out for the 2nd out in the inning. Ryan Zimmerman had an 8-pitch at-bat and missed a mistake pitch right down the middle to flyout to centerfield.

In the bottom of the 6th inning, Matt Grace took over in the 4-3 game and gave up a single and a long home run to Contreras to quickly move the score to 6-3. In the top of the 7th inning, Matt Albers took over and with Ian Happ on first base and stealing, Jose Lobaton would have had him with a decent throw but he threw it 10 feet short and it skipped into centerfield moving Happ to 3rd and he later scored making it a 7-3 game. Sammy Solis finished out the 7th inning with strikeouts of Anthony Rizzo and Willson Contreras.

In the top of the 8th inning the Nationals had Daniel Murphy up with Harper on 2nd and Zim on 1st and Murphy fouled out on a 3-2 pitch. Rendon grounded out but a run scored on a throwing error to make the score 7-4.  Sammy Solis struck out 2 more in the 8th to keep the score 7-4. On his outing, Solis threw a perfect 1 2/3 innings with 4 strikeouts which was his best game of his season.

Howie Kendrick led-off the 9th as a pinch-hitter and went from 3-0 to 3-2 in the count and rolled over a groundout. Jose Lobaton walked. Brian Goodwin walked. Wilmer Difo struck out on a 3-2 pitch. The first 4 batters all got to 3-2 counts. Bryce Harper entered the batter’s box 3-for-4 in his career against the Cubs closer, Wade Davis, who was struggling for command. Harper represented the tying run. Unfortunately, Harper struck out to end the game after he fouled off a hanging slider. Wade Davis finished at 30-pitches and the silver lining is that he won’t be available to pitch tomorrow.

The Nats lost 7-4 to tie up this series and the season series at 3-games each.



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