Click here to watch Nats win #16 on MASN via MLB.TV at 6:30 pm tonight with the rest of us. Just a quick reminder of what we are doing if this is your first time: As a group, we are going to be re-watching all 105 wins from the Nats 2019 season in chronological order at 6:30 pm each night. We will all try to sync up to the same point in the game, and this is a work in progress to maneuver to the same point in the game. Feel free to ask in the comments section where everyone is in the game so you can sync up. Many people are joining in at different points, and most people are not commenting — rather just following along.
The MLB.TV library is unlocked and free to everyone for the 2018-2019 season courtesy of MLB. This win #16 came in the 39th game in the 2019 season, and the Nats took a 15-23 record into this game.
Slowly but surely the Nationals got their injured players back. Today it was Juan Soto returning to the active roster after suffering from back spasms. The lineup card was very close to what manager Dave Martinez penciled up on Opening Day except for in this game in Los Angeles, Wilmer Difo was at shortstop and the newly hired outfielder, Gerardo Parra would have his first baseman’s glove in this game. That is not a misprint. Howie Kendrick could have played in this game, but Martinez opted for Parra who has 20 starts at first base during his tenure in Colorado the previous two seasons. Parra had an .808 OPS against the Dodgers starter, Walker Buehler.
The Nationals started Max Scherzer who had been the workhorse for the team with little to show for it as he only had one win on the season. Scherzer can only do what he could do on the mound which hds been mostly very good, but the lack of run support and untimely meltdowns in the bullpen hurt him and there was also some questionable defense early in the season.
In run support, it had been some feast and famine recently and mostly famine through early May of 2019. They had scored 3-runs or less in 21 of the team’s 38 games (55%) and 12-of-their-previous-15 games. Runs were at a premium. In the prior week, the Nationals showed small ball works with the havoc they wreaked in bunting. The night before though, they did not challenge the inexperienced third baseman, Max Muncy, with a bunt even when the Nats had men at second and first and no outs with Adrian Sanchez pinch-hitting in the 8th inning. They never scored that lead runner.
Washington Nationals vs. Los Angeles Dodgers
Stadium: Dodgers Stadium, Chavez Ravine, California