The Washington Nationals led 3-1 going into the bottom of the seventh inning, and manager Dave Martinez sent Hunter Strickland out for another inning. This season, Strickland has only pitched more than one inning once and that was after five days off. Strickland pitched yesterday in a key spot and was excellent and pitched a scoreless sixth inning today, but today he quickly unraveled and the Nats gave up four runs between Strickland, Wander Suero,and Tanner Rainey in that seventh inning and the blown save became a loss as this time the offense could not bail out the bullpen. There were many failures in this game like the Juan Soto doubleplay ball in the first inning that ended a promising inning where the Nats had the Marlins on the ropes from the start of the game but the Nats could never put the game away.
This was a game the Nationals had in-hand as Austin Voth cruised through five innings and departed with the 3-1 lead. The Nats looked sluggish in most aspects, but good enough to win the game against a team with 101 losses. Wander Suero has now lost nine games this season, and something has to change with use and usage in this bullpen. The braintrust in the Nationals dugout has to know their players better, and that is the bottomline. Sure, the players are not executing but the usage of Strickland was questionable and Suero was now used for his third consecutive day.
The Nationals will now fly back to Washington, D.C. for their final homestand of 8 games in seven days.