Click here to watch Nats win #28 on June 5th 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 #28 came in the 61st game in the 2019 season, and the Nats took the a 27-33 record into this game. This is where manager Dave Martinez started preaching “Go 1-0 every game” and eventually the Nats turned a losing record into a winning record. It took the Nats until June 28th to reach a winning record and they got to 12 games above .500 on August 21st. They dug themselves a deep hole and it took much longer to dig out of it.
Pessimism was being replaced by cautious optimism as the Nats were streaking to four in a row, and this time in a Nats classic win as Trea Turner with 8½ fingers hit his second walk-off homer of the season, and the third of his career. If Ryan Zimmerman is Mr. Walk-off, does that make Trea Mr. Walk-off Jr.? The Nats moved to within 5 games of .500 with this win before the team would head to San Diego for a 4-game trip.
In the prior week, Anibal Sanchez was brilliant on the mound as he beat the Atlanta Braves who employed him last year and helped resurrect his career. Maybe the 10-day IL stint was what Sanchie needed to get himself righted after some tough starts previously. In this game, the veteran pitcher needed to keep the team’s positive momentum moving forward. He was set to face the right-handed Dylan Covey of the White Sox. Both teams headed to the airport after this two-game series. First things first, the Nationals needed to take care of business in this afternoon game before they departed.
The Nationals “A’ bullpen had stepped up in these wins and it seemed that Matt Grace, Tanner Rainey, Wander Suero and Sean Doolittle were in the “A” bullpen, and the rest were all warmed up yesterday and not used except for Tony Sipp who never got up. The other three in the ‘pen were Kyle McGowin, Javy Guerra, and Kyle Barraclough. Guerra would be an innings eater and mostly reliable and Fernando Rodney would join the team and was assigned to Triple-A Fresno. Unfortunately as we know Grace would not last in the “A” bullpen, and Justin Miller went from the early “A” bullpen to the 10-day IL and off the roster. Of course Trevor Rosenthal would also find the same fate. Both Sipp and Barraclough would not make it the full season with the Nats either.
“I think our bullpen is starting to pitch and feel a little more comfortable like we expected them to pitch,” Mike Rizzo said the morning of this game. “Our starters have been asked and taxed and asked to go the extra mile, they have. It’s good to see the other portions of the roster pick [the starters] up like they had to last night.”
Chicago White Sox vs. Washington Nationals
Stadium: Nationals Park, Washington, D.C.