The win was 4-outs away, and Sean Doolittle who had not pitched in four days looked rusty and allowed 6-runs to score when taking over with 2-outs in the 8th inning. Doolittle entered the game to face Carlos Gomez who was batting .077 this season, and he plunked him on the first pitch to load the bases then Doolittle gave up a gapper double to score 3-runs and followed that up 2 batters later to face callup Rajai Davis who then got him for a 3-run home run. All this came in a game that Max Scherzer threw a 6.0 inning shutout. The Nats only run in the game came from an Adam Eaton home run off of Jacob deGrom.
This was a devastating loss to push the Nats 11-games under .500, and you have to wonder if manager Dave Martinez can survive this mess. This game was there for the Nationals to win, and Martinez chose not to insert Gerardo Parra or Michael Taylor as a defensive replacement in the 7th inning or even the 8th inning. Juan Soto had a chance to close out the 8th inning before Doolittle was even needed in the game, but he did not go aggressively after a flyball in the 8th inning.
“I’m really frustrated. I’m disgusted with myself,” Doolittle said. “I let the team down and it hurts.”
When will Martinez learn that the little things begin with him? Early this morning, general manager Mike Rizzo vented his frustration during his Wednesday morning radio appearance on 106.7 The Fan.
“Definitely frustrated,” Rizzo said. “Pissed at performance and that type of thing. Satisfied with the energy level, the effort and the fight the team shows every night. I give ’em credit for that and it’s just that the performance level is not adequate.”