Tag: Gio Gonzalez


The Nationals have lost six straight, eight of ten and are now under .500


Back in March the Nationals were everyone’s favorites. They had just signed Max Scherzer to a mega deal which put him alongside Jordan Zimmermann, Stephen Strasburg, Doug Fister, and Gio Gonzalez as perhaps the best rotation in baseball. They had a core of guys with both speed and defensive bonafides in Anthony Rendon, Denard Span, Ian Desmond. They had Jayson Werth. They had a healthy Bryce Harper and a healthy Ryan Zimmerman.

They also had, in terms of competition, a Braves team which decided to punt the year and rebuild, a Phillies team which looked like a disaster and Mets and Marlins teams which, while on the upswing, didn’t figure to match the firepower of the Washington Nationals. Simply put, no one in their right mind did anything but pick the Nationals to win the East and win it easily. And they still may win the NL East. There’s a month and a half of baseball to go and anything can happen.

Right now, however, they are looking terrible. They’ve lost six in a row, eight of ten and find themselves at 58-59, four and a half games back of the Mets. Who, by the way, also got swept this weekend, which means the Nats lost a prime opportunity to make up ground. Or, if you’re more of an optimist, saved the Nats from being buried even deeper than they are.

Also, if you’re optimistic, you can say that it was gonna be an ugly road trip to begin with. Yes, they’re 1-6 on the west coast swing and were just shut out for the third time in six games, but those three shutouts came at the hands of Zack Greinke, Clayton Kershaw and Madison Bumgarner, who are probably the three best pitchers in the game. And, after an off-day today, they do get to play the Rockies who are no great shakes. We’ll just forget for a moment that the Nats dropped two of three to the Rockies at home last week.

No matter how you want to spin it, the numbers don’t lie and the numbers are pretty ugly. The Nats are 10-20 since the All-Star break. While four and a half games don’t seem like an insurmountable deficit, it becomes harder and harder the longer time goes on. If the Mets play at their current pace the rest of the way the Nats have to go something like 12-games over .500 for the remainder of the season to beat ’em out. And, because the wild card deficit is so big — nine and a half games — there is no margin for error here. Second place means watching the playoffs from home.

Time to get moving, Nats. You have a lot of expectations to live up to and not a lot of time left to do it.

There IS crying in baseball. Wilmer Flores hit a walk-off home run!


There was some confusion on Wednesday when the Mets and Brewers apparently agreed on a deal involving All-Star outfielder Carlos Gomez. The Mets were to get Gomez in exchange for pitcher Zack Wheeler and infielder Wilmer Flores. The news spread like wildfire, and Flores got wind of it during Wednesday’s game against the Padres. He began crying on the field, as he was about to leave the organization he’d been with since he was 16 years old.

And then the trade fell though. Awkward.

When he might have otherwise been in Milwaukee with new teammates, Flores started at second base for the Mets on Friday night and played a rather important role in a win against the Nationals. He broke a scoreless tie in the fourth inning with an RBI single to left field against Gio Gonzalez, the only run the Mets would muster through 10 innings. In the 12th, Flores hit a walk-off solo home run to left-center off of reliever Felipe Rivero.

After the last 48 or so hours Flores has had, you can’t help but feel happy for the guy.

Flores is batting .251/.283/.387 with 11 home runs and 42 RBI on the season.

Matt Williams not happy that Saturday’s game started ahead of steady rain

Matt Williams

The forecast for Saturday afternoon’s game in Philadelphia between the Nationals and Phillies wasn’t very pretty: rain, rain, and more rain, as Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post noted on Twitter. The game started on time and the two teams held each other scoreless through one and a half innings before the game went into a rain delay and was eventually postponed.

Per Janes, the game will be restarted from the beginning as part of a single-admission double-header at Citizens Bank Park on Sunday. Saturday’s starters — Adam Morgan for the Phillies and Gio Gonzalez for the Nationals — have been burned so each team will have to call upon a spot starter for Sunday. For the Phillies, that job goes to Severino Gonzalez. The Nationals haven’t made a decision yet.

Nationals manager Matt Williams isn’t happy with Saturday’s outcome:


Saturday afternoon’s games in Baltimore between the Orioles and Indians, and in Detroit between the Tigers and White Sox, were both postponed before getting underway. Why that option wasn’t considered in Philadelphia is a question currently still unanswered.

Streak over: A Nationals starter allowed a run for the first time in 48 innings

Max Scherzer, Wilson Ramos

Max Scherzer’s bid for a Vander Meer — throwing back-to-back no-hitters — overshadowed another impressive piece of Nationals-related trivia as they prepared to take on the Phillies: the starting rotation’s collective scoreless innings streak.

Joe Ross, on June 19, was the last Nationals starter to yield a run, doing so in the second inning when Pirates outfielder Gregory Polanco hit an RBI single to right field.

Scherzer lost his bid for a perfect game with one out in the sixth inning on a Freddy Galvis double to right field, but he was stranded. In the seventh, Cesar Hernandez led off with a double and eventually came around to score on Domonic Brown’s double to left-center. That ended a streak of 48 consecutive scoreless innings for the Nats’ rotation, as Mark Zuckerman of CSN Washington noted on Twitter:

Here’s what the Nationals’ starting pitching has looked like lately:

  • Joe Ross, June 19 vs. Pirates: 7.1 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 11 K
  • Max Scherzer, June 20 vs. Pirates: 9 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB (1 HBP), 10 K
  • Gio Gonzalez, June 21 vs. Pirates: 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 4 K
  • Stephen Strasburg, June 23 vs. Braves: 5 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 6 K
  • Jordan Zimmermann, June 24 vs. Braves: 8 IP, 6 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K
  • Doug Fister, June 25 vs. Braves: 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K
  • Max Scherzer, June 26 @ Phillies: 8 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 7 K
  • Total: 51.1 IP, 29 H, 3 ER (0.53 ERA), 5 BB, 45 K