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Nats’ combined no-hit bid broken up in the eighth inning

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Update #3 (4:09 PM EDT): Ramon Cabrera broke up the no-hit bid with a ground ball single to left field off of reliever Matt Belisle.

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Update #2 (3:53 PM EDT): Treinen got Billy Hamilton to ground out to end the seventh inning, so the combined no-hitter is still in play.

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Update (3:50 PM EDT): In the seventh, Strasburg struck out Jay Bruce, walked Eugenio Suarez, uncorked a wild pitch, then got Brandon Phillips to ground out. It was at that point, Baker decided to lift Strasburg from the game at 109 pitches. It’s hard to blame Baker for doing so. Strasburg is responsible for the runner at third base, which reliever Blake Treinen will inherit.

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Stephen Strasburg has been strong in his return from the disabled list, tossing six no-hit innings thus far in Sunday’s start against the Reds. He has walked three and struck out four on 93 pitches, so if he does go the distance, he’ll rack up quite the high pitch count. Manager Dusty Baker may have to make a tough decision.

If Strasburg does complete the no-hitter, he’ll be the first to do so since Max Scherzer on October 3 last season against the Mets. The Cubs’ Jake Arrieta is the only pitcher this season to have thrown a no-no.

The Nationals have pummeled the Reds’ pitching to the tune of eight runs. Four of them came in the fourth inning on a Danny Espinoa grand slam, his second of the series. Wilson Ramos and Bryce Harper have also homered.

Joe Kelly’s suspension reduced to 5 games on appeal

Joe Kelly suspended eight
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LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles Dodgers reliever Joe Kelly had his suspension for throwing pitches near the heads of Houston hitters reduced to five games on appeal.

Kelly was originally penalized eight games by Major League Baseball on July 29, a day after throwing a 96 mph fastball near the head of Houston’s Alex Bregman and two curveballs that brushed back Carlos Correa.

The Dodgers on Wednesday confirmed the reduced penalty.

Kelly went on the 10-day injured list retroactive to last Sunday with right shoulder inflammation. He will serve his suspension when he returns.

After striking out Corea, Kelly curled his lip into a pouting expression and exchanged words with the shortstop.

Benches cleared after Kelly’s actions during the sixth inning of Los Angeles’ 5-2 win at Houston in the teams’ first meeting since it was revealed the Astros stole signs en route to a 2017 World Series title over the Dodgers.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts served his one-game suspension the same day the penalty was handed down. Astros manager Dusty Baker was fined an undisclosed amount.

Kelly denied that he purposely threw at the Astros. He has previously been suspended in his career for throwing at a batter.

The penalties were imposed by former pitcher Chris Young, MLB’s senior vice president of baseball operations, who issued his first ruling since taking over the job from Joe Torre.