The Nationals knocked the Cubs ace, Jon Lester, out of the game in the 4th inning as the Nationals cruised to a 9-4 win in Wrigley field behind some fine pitching by Tanner Roark and the power from two Ryan Zimmerman home runs and 6 RBIs and a 2-run home run from Daniel Murphy.
Tanner Roark has now won 4-games in a row, and he looked great today until he came out for the 8th inning and gave up his second run of the game and pushed his pitch count to 117. You can check the last time Roark went to 117-pitches because he did that on May 19th when his ERA was 3.39 and a month later it was 4.27. Arm fatigue is real. There are no “rest” days coming up in the schedule until August 20th.
Reliever Wander Suero still had to relieve Roark at the 7 2/3 mark and Suero closed out the game. Maybe there was a legitimate reason for Roark to pitch the 8th inning, but it is doubtful. Suero was warming in the 7th inning and was ready.
The Nationals offense consisted of 13-hits, 5 walks, and 9-runs scored. Ryan Zimmerman and Daniel Murphy were plenty of offense today, and Zimmerman pushed his OPS to a good looking .832 OPS.