Game #15 A season finale with the A’s and a goodbye to the Oakland Coliseum

The Washington Nationals got on top and stayed on top with a wire-to-wire win last night in Oakland. Today, the two teams wrap-up their season in a rubber game matchup, and the final time the Nats will play in the Oakland Coliseum.

After an 11-K performance last night by MacKenzie Gore over his 5.0 scoreless innings and 90-pitches, the bullpen only gave up one-run in the remaining 4.0 innings of work to seal the win. The Nats got 2-hit games from CJ Abrams, Luis Garcia Jr., Riley Adams, and Jacob Young. The team was a poor 2-for-12 in RISP spots last night, and are 2-for-22 in the series. They obviously have to improve, and at least take advantage with productive outs.

For Gore, he became the first pitcher in Nats’ history with 11 strikeouts in a start of five innings or fewer. Last year, Gore had an 11-K game and that was over 7.0 innings. In this start, he averaged 2.2 K’s per inning which is the exact pace a pitcher would need for a 20 K game in 9.0 innings.

If the team uses the days-off to skip a fifth starter, here is the upcoming pitching:

  1. Sunday: Trevor Williams vs. Oakland
  2. Monday: Either Patrick Corbin vs. Dodgers or a callup
  3. Tuesday: ? vs. Dodgers or Corbin
  4. Wednesday: Irvin vs. Dodgers
  5. Thursday: Day-off
  6. Friday: Gore vs. Houston
  7. Saturday: Williams vs. Houston
  8. Sunday: Corbin vs. Houston
  9. Monday: Day-off
  10. Tuesday: Irvin vs. Dodgers
  11. Wednesday: Gore vs. Dodgers
  12. Thursday: Williams vs. Dodgers
  13. Friday: Corbin vs. Miami
  14. Saturday: ? vs. Miami
  15. Sunday: Irvin vs. Miami
  16. Monday: Gore vs. Miami

The Nats have three spots to fill for starters on Monday April 15 or Tuesday April 16 in Los Angeles versus the Dodgers, Saturday April 27 in Miami, and Thursday May 2nd in Texas. Adon would not be available to be called up on Tuesday except due to an injury. Would it be Jackson Rutledge who just hurt his ankle? Would it be a bullpen game? Or what about Mitchell Parker on extra rest? He is on the 40-man roster. Who else would you suggest? Of course Adon makes sense for the April 27 game in Miami. Does Rizzo have a move for a veteran to acquire on an opt-out?

Your top Washington Nationals on the FanGraphs’ WAR leaderboard has Jesse Winker and Hunter Harvey on top at 0.6 WAR with Gore at +0.5. Following them are Trevor Williams and Garcia both at +0.3. There are eight Nats now at +0.2. As many players are surging up in value, Lane Thomas has once again fallen back into negative WAR, and Joey Meneses, Eddie Rosario, and Kyle Finnegan are the bottom three with a combined -1.1 WAR.

What is interesting in the WAR numbers is that it looks at numerous factors such as walks, WHIP, and strikeouts for pitchers which is why Finnegan is at the bottom — even though he has five saves for the team.

The team will face the left-handed Alex Wood who has dealt with struggles this season. Manager Dave Martinez has Williams as his starter. The curious question for today is how Martinez sets his bullpen today since Jordan Weems, Robert Garcia, Harvey, and Finnegan have all pitched Friday and Saturday. Derek Law did not pitch Friday — but he did pitch yesterday. That would also mean that four relievers have not pitched at all since the Giants series as the Nats are carrying nine relievers at the moment.

“It’s beautiful. [Gore] goes out there and attacks the strike zone. He goes out there and competes. Hopefully, we can now see that consistency.”

“I’m really trying to keep him at that 90-pitch mark. Especially a day like today, when it’s kind of cold out. Because we’re going to build him up, and we want him to finish the season and not have to worry about innings.”

— manager Dave Martinez said last night

The Nats starting pitchers have a combined ERA of 5.65 for 29th in MLB. Obviously sample sizes are miniscule at this point. Still a lot of work for the Nationals to improve in the rankings.

Here is how they rank:

No. 5 Starter: Josiah Gray 14.04
No. 4 Starter: Patrick Corbin 8.44
No. 3 Starter: Jake Irvin 4.24
No. 2 Starter: MacKenzie Gore 2.81
No. 1 Starter:  Trevor Williams 2.61

Washington Nationals vs. Oakland Athletics

Stadium: Oakland Coliseum, Oakland, California
1st Pitch: 4:07 pm EDT
Radio: 106.7 The Fan radio and via the MLB app; In Spanish on DC 87.7 FM and La Pantera 100.7 FM/1220 AM. On Sirius/XM, the Nats will be online only, and the opposing team on Channel 182.

Line-up subject to change (without notice):

TalkNats is Celebrating the 5 and 100 year anniversaries of World Series Wins by providing Game-by-Game Summaries.
Game 15:
The 2019 Nationals lost on 4/16 against the Giants and moved their record to 7-8 on that date. Box Score / Standings
The 1924 Senators won on 5/2 against the New York Yankees resulting in a Senators’ record of 7-8 on that date. Box Score / Standings

Just think, if the Nats can find a way to win today, they would match the records of both the 1924 and 2019 Washington teams with a 7-8 record. According to, the Nats’ 2024 Playoff Odds are at 1.3% to make postseason, and less than 0.1% to win the World Series.

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