The Nationals needed Erick Fedde to lead them to a victory over one of the hottest pitchers in baseball as Jeff Samardzija had been nearly unbeatable for a month with a 2.09 ERA in July, but the Nats ran up Samardzija’s pitch count to 98 pitches and knocked him out after 4.0 innings en route to a 4-0 shutout. Fedde went 6.0 scoreless innings and did not issue a walk or give up a run, and the Nats new-look bullpen took care of the final 3.0 innings to preserve the shutout. The Nationals offense did it via a lot of walks and very little situational hitting.
“[Fedde] came in and he was focused today,” manager Dave Martinez said. “He had good stuff today. I told him: ‘Let’s build off of that, and in five days be ready to go again.’”
For the Nationals scoring, they got runs off of a balk, a lost ball in the twilight, and a double-steal of home. The Nationals were 1-11 in RISP situations and the only hit was a Matt Adams double that got lost in the twilight. The only real hit that scored a run was a single on a 3-2 count with Adam Eaton running on the pitch with 2 outs and he scored on a long Anthony Rendon single.
Both teams made some key defensive plays, but you cannot defend the eight walks the Giants pitchers issued, and there should have been more walks if homeplate ump Greg Gibson did not enlarge his strike zone. The Giants bullpen just could not throw strikes, and when they did the Nats hit into a lot of hard luck outs and a few poor at-bats stranded baserunners. Brian Dozier stranded five baserunners, and Kurt Suzuki and Victor Robles each stranded four teammates on the bases. Normally you do not win games hitting 1-11 in RISP with no home runs, but having the pitchers step up was a key tonight. They put an end to the team’s two game skid and put the Nationals back in the win column.