The Orioles picked up their fifth consecutive victory on Saturday night, besting the regional-rival Nationals by a score of 6-5 in front of the second-largest crowd in the short history of Nationals Park.
Orioles center fielder Adam Jones led the way, blasting his 14th home run of the season while collecting his 28th and 29th RBI. He now has a .975 OPS and a .310 batting average in 41 games played.
Baltimore is currently 27-14, good enough for a two-game lead in the wacky American League East.
Your Saturday box scores:
Orioles 6, Nationals 5
Reds 6, Yankees 5
Mets 0, Blue Jays 2
Marlins 0, Indians 2
Pirates 4, Tigers 3
Athletics 0, Giants 4
Twins 5, Brewers 4 (11 innings)
Mariners 10, Rockies 3
Braves 2, Rays 5
Diamondbacks 3, Royals 7
White Sox 7, Cubs 4
Rangers 5, Astros 6
Red Sox 7, Phillies 5
Angels 2, Padres 3
Cardinals 0, Dodgers 6
Nationals GM Mike Rizzo said on Tuesday that starter Stephen Strasburg is unlikely to pitch in the NLDS against the Dodgers, Chase Hughes of CSN Mid-Atlantic reports. Strasburg hasn’t pitched since September 7 due to a strained flexor mass.
Strasburg was pitching well before a few poor starts prior to being shut down in August. He currently holds a 3.60 ERA with a 183/44 K/BB ratio in 147 2/3 innings.
The Nationals signed Strasburg to a seven-year, $175 million contract extension in May. This was obviously not how they invisioned his 2016 campaign going.
Nationals starter A.J. Cole has been fined an undisclosed amount and suspended five games by Major League Baseball for intentionally throwing at Pirates third baseman Jung Ho Kang on Sunday, Chelsea Janes of The Washington Post reports. Cole is appealing his suspension.
Kang faked a tag on Bryce Harper, who was coming into third base on a triple. The fake-out caused Harper to slide awkwardly, injuring his left thumb. The Nationals took exception to this and Cole threw a fastball that ended sailing behind Kang’s back during his next at-bat. Cole was ejected and both benches emptied. There was some yelling and some light pushing and shoving, but nothing beyond that.
Cole will remain active until his appeal is heard, which may allow him to make one more start before the end of the regular season. He’s carrying a 5.09 ERA with a 37/14 K/BB ratio in 35 1/3 innings over seven starts this season.