Another Stephen Strasburg gem tonight and those calf cramps bit Stras again limiting him to a 6.0 inning shutout instead of going deeper in the game. Pedro Severino in his first start this season got the Nats on the board with a nice RISP line-drive single to put his team up 1-0, and Daniel Murphy added an insurance run on a home run in the 8th inning proved to be the difference. Murphy was robbed earlier in the game of a home run as Giancarlo Stanton reached over the wall to steal one.
The Magic # is at 8 with this win, and the Nationals once again are back to 30 games above .500 with this 2-to-1 win. The bullpen was excellent with 1 1/3 innings of pitching from Sammy Solis who had to work around an error, and 2/3 of an inning from Matt Albers who had to face Stanton in a 1-0 game and Albers struck him out. Sean Doolittle earned his 15th save for the Nationals, and he was tagged with an unearned run.
The Nationals managed 8 hits tonight which came in pairs of hits by Severino, Alejando De Aza, Daniel Murphy, and Adam Lind. The issue was the Nationals were only 1-for-7 with RISP situations and as mentioned Pedro Severino had the only RISP hit. In fact, Severino was 2-for-4 in the game and raised his season average to .333. Lobaton’s last RBI was back in July as was his last 2-hit game. It also appeared that Severino called an excellent game, and his only faux pas was a passed ball in the 9th inning.
With Stephen Strasburg‘s 6.0 inning shutout today, he also set a Nats record of 26.0 consecutive shutout innings eclipsing Gio Gonzalez‘s 25.0 scoreless innings record set back in 2012. Strasburg season’s ERA is an elite 2.78, and he has lowered his ERA an impressive 79 points from June 23rd when his ERA sat at 3.57.
“It was a great game,” Dusty Baker said before he began complimenting tonight’s catcher. “Sevy called a great game — also did a great job of receiving throughout the game. He gives a good low target, blocks well [the] balls in the dirt. The game ball should go I think to Sevy and Stras, both. I’ve been watching Sevy for a couple of years. He had a great chance of making this club out of spring training except he had a bad arm at the time. But he’s healthy [now]. He brings a lot of energy to the team and the field. It’s a luxury because he can run. I don’t have to pinch-run for him.”