Livan Hernandez pitches, so of course the Nats are shut out

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For the third straight time Thursday, the Nationals were shut out in a Livan Hernandez start, losing 1-0 to the Mets as Dillon Gee and two relievers combined on a three-hitter.

The loss dropped him to .500 for his career at 169-169.

It took Hernandez himself to ruin Gee’s bid for a no-hitter when he singled with two outs in the sixth.  The Nats’ only other hits came courtesy of Alex Cora and Laynce Nix.

Hernandez has been on the wrong side of 1-0 games in back-to-back outings.  Just like last Saturday against the Marlins, he allowed one run over seven innings in this one.  The Nationals were also shut out in a May 8 start in which Hernandez gave up six runs.

In all, the Nats have been shut out in four of Hernandez’s 10 starts.  They scored one or two runs in two of the others.  When the Nationals have scored at least three runs, Hernandez is 3-0 with one no-decision.  For the season, he’s 3-6 with a 3.64 ERA.

Mike Moustakas sets Royals single-season record with 37th home run

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Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas belted his 37th home run on Wednesday evening, setting a new club record for homers in a single season. Moustakas had been tied with Steve Balboni, who hit 36 home runs in 1985.

The home run came on a 2-0, 82 MPH slider from Blue Jays reliever Carlos Ramirez, boosting the Royals’ lead to 13-0 in the top of the sixth inning.

Moustakas, 29, entered the night batting .271/.313/.523 with 82 RBI and 71 runs scored in 560 plate appearances.

Chris Sale records his 300th strikeout this season

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Red Sox starter Chris Sale recorded his 300th strikeout of the 2017 season on Wednesday night against the Orioles. The momentous occasion occurred with two outs in the eighth inning. Facing Ryan Flaherty, Sale threw a slider that caught the strike zone low and inside for called strike three.

Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strikeout 300-plus batters in a season in the last 15 years. Curt Schilling and Randy Johnson accomplished the feat in 2002, and Johnson also did it in 2001 and 2000. Pedro Martinez had been the only other Red Sox pitcher to have a 300-strikeout season.

Through eight scoreless innings, Sale limited the Orioles to four hits with no walks and 13 strikeouts. The Red Sox offense gave him plenty of run support. Mookie Betts and Devin Marrero each hit two-run home runs in the fourth. Hanley Ramirez added a two-run double in the sixth and Dustin Pedroia hit a two-run double of his own in the eighth to make it 8-0.