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Orioles 3, Nats 2: Schoop’s homer wins it in 9th

Jul 10, 2015, 10:21 PM EDT

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GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Round 1 of this year’s Battle of the Beltways brought the season’s largest crowd to Camden Yards. And it brought a tight, tense ballgame to downtown Baltimore, decided late by bullpens and big at-bats.

In the end, the Orioles’ relief corps and big bats came through when the Nationals’ could not. Jonathan Schoop’s 2-out, 2-strike homer off Tanner Roark in the bottom of the ninth capped Baltimore’s comeback and sent the Nats walking off the field in disappointment. Roark had looked dominant to that point in the ninth, striking out both Jimmy Paredes and J.J. Hardy and coming within one strike of doing the same to Schoop. But with one swing, the Orioles came back to win for the first time in 37 tries this season when trailing after seven innings.

Gio Gonzalez and Chris Tillman were effective but not exactly efficient, each needing at least 100 pitches to complete six innings. Adam Jones’ leadoff homer in the fourth represented the lone run off Gonzalez, while the Nationals got a pair of big, 2-out RBI hits from Tyler Moore and Michael Taylor off Tillman to take the lead in the bottom of the fifth.

Aaron Barrett, returning from a 4-week DL stint, came through big with three straight outs in the seventh to protect the lead, but the Nats couldn’t hold it in the eighth. Casey Janssen allowed an infield single to Chris Parmalee, then Matt Thornton served up an RBI-double to Matt Wieters that tied the game, brought the crowd back to life and set the stage for the dramatic finish.

HITTING HIGHLIGHT: With so many big names now on the DL, the Nationals have to get contributions from a variety of sources now, and they have to get quality at-bats with runners in scoring position. They got a couple of those Friday night from the last two guys in their batting order: Moore and Taylor. With his team trailing 2-1 and two out in the fifth, Moore sent a double down the right-field line, bringing home Clint Robinson and tying the game. Moments later, Taylor hammered the first pitch he saw past a diving Manny Machado at third base, bringing Moore home with the go-ahead run. Two at-bats, both with two outs and a man in scoring position, both producing runs.

PITCHING HIGHLIGHT: He didn’t have a single clean inning, but Gonzalez got the job done. His changeup was pretty effective against right-handed batters, leading to a pair of Steve Pearce strikeouts. He also fielded four comebackers in a span of five innings. Gonzalez’s lone mistake was a hanging first-pitch curveball to Adam Jones, who sent the ball flying to left-center for a leadoff homer in the fourth. He did come through with some big pitches late, including a double-play grounder off Manny Machado’s bat to end the fifth and a strikeout of Nolan Reimold to end the sixth. Sitting at 100 pitches, Gonzalez was sent back to the mound for the seventh to turn around switch-hitter Jimmy Paredes but wound up walking him and calling it a night. That proved historically significant: It snapped the Nationals’ pitching staff’s streak of consecutive games issuing two or fewer walks at 20, the longest streak in baseball since 1900.

KEY STAT: Despite the fact 96 percent of his plate appearances have come while batting first, eighth or ninth, Michael Taylor now has 30 RBI in 223 at-bats this season.

UP NEXT: Jordan Zimmermann, whose wife Amy gave birth to the couple’s second child Friday morning, will return from the paternity leave list to start Saturday’s 7:05 p.m. game. Right-hander Miguel Gonzalez starts for Baltimore.

  1. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:24 PM

    A few mistakes today in a back and forth game. Thornton with a poor pitch and Roark once again can’t shutdown the other team. The offense was OK but had opportunities that were thwarted by those 2 Lobaton GIDPs.

  2. tcostant - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:24 PM

    So disappointing, a loss from the jaws of victory.

  3. Joe Seamhead - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:25 PM

    Well, that just was a sucky way to lose the game. We were talking here that with 2 strikes that Roark should throw a letter high fastball to Schoop. He went to the slider well one pitch too many.times

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:30 PM

      Of course you throw the chase pitch. How many times do we say it with Roark. It was just a lousy slider that Schoop pulled.

      High fastball or slider in the dirt.

      Roark only has 2 appearances this year where he didn’t allow a runner on base. At some point he needs to stick to mop-up and long relief which I guess was MW’s feeling that this was a long-relief.

      4.43 ERA for Roark. What has happened to him.

      • stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:33 PM

        Personally I think it’s being jerked back and forth between starting, long relief and high leverage late inning situations. Hard to expect a guy to deliver in each of those very different situations.

      • Doc - Jul 10, 2015 at 11:31 PM

        He,s not pitching enough to establish his stuff.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 11, 2015 at 9:16 AM

        I’m not buying that.

    • Mrsb loves the Nats - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:36 PM

      My dad said THROW IT IN THE DIRT.. or HIGH HEAT…. He was like Schoop was in swing mode… throw him junk…

      Disappointing way to lose. I am still upset that we only got 2 on Tillman… 6+ERA and we make him look like Cueto…

      • manassasnatsfan - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:55 PM

        What do I say about hanging sliders off speed pitches? They are easy homers if to just time it. Just like batting practice.

        Our problems is we hang some and higher percentages of this are hit hard. The other team hangs as many if not more and we to often swing and miss or don’t even bother to swing.

  4. stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:26 PM

    That was more discouraging than most. Because it was O’s in Baltimore I guess.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:56 PM

      When you are winning after 7 all losses are discouraging. You just can’t afford to have as weak as 8th inning as we have to much of the season.

  5. TimDz - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:27 PM

    Bandbox win for the Angelos…..meh.

    • stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:29 PM

      Pretty sure the fences don’t move in and out between innings. Also, both their homers were crushed.

      • TimDz - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:31 PM

        That was a warning track out in Nats Park….

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:32 PM

        I don’t know if Schoop’s HR is a HR in every park, but you’re right, both teams played with the same dimensions.

      • stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:55 PM

        Replay finally up on MLB app and no, the ball didn’t carry as far as I thought it did. Nonetheless, it was there for our guys, too.

  6. stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:28 PM

    Collapse heading into All Star break would remind me way too much of 2013.

    • therealjohnc - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:30 PM

      Everything reminds people of 2013. Nothing ever reminds them of 2012 or 2014. Until the postseason, when everything does.

      Every season is different.

      • rayvil01 - Jul 11, 2015 at 9:30 AM

        Wow! What a great comment. Spot on. You’ve just summed up 50+ percent of Nats message board traffic in a couple of sentences.

  7. scnatsfan - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:28 PM

    If this team plays 500 ball fielding this lineup we should be happy. Too many cold and poor bats nightly in this lineup. Every mistake a pitcher makes is magnified by the anemic offense.

    • natslive - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:32 PM

      Yeah with all the injuries the depleted lineup missed some chances and Harper can’t do it every night…..Gio had a good outing but once again our BP blows it but then again don’t win many games when you only score 2 but wasted another good effort by a starter….hopefully the ASB will do us some good

  8. David Proctor - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:30 PM

    It’s hard for me to get upset about the offense when you look at that lineup. If you expect that lineup to churn out a lot of runs, you’re delusional. It is frustrating because they had chances. Lobaton was awful tonight at the plate. Harper looked baffled at the plate, which is odd to see against a righty who throws low 90s.

    Roark has regressed hard. He needs to be relegated to mopup duty at this point until he proves he can be trusted. I’m not sure why he was the choice in that spot when MW had 9 men in the bullpen and only 2 had been used. Of course, Roark’s stuff actually looked the best it had all year. Didn’t matter.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:37 PM

      “Roark has regressed hard. He needs to be relegated to mopup duty at this point until he proves he can be trusted.”

      Saying the same above. I can’t watch a guy who just can’t dominate be given Hi Lev spots. I understand why MW gave him the ball but he hasn’t been good at all. Execution has been problem, sure, but the quality of his pitches haven’t been good. There are times that he’s gotten away with mistake pitches, not tonight.

  9. Mrsb loves the Nats - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:43 PM

    I hope Rizzo can work magic and get Chapman… I am keeping hope alive…

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:45 PM

      +9

    • stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:46 PM

      You’re not going to like what we’ll have to give up to get him, I bet.

      • Mrsb loves the Nats - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:48 PM

        Idk… Reds are sellers… I bet Rizzo can work his magic and pull of more theivery… Something has to give with this BP..

        BP will ruin the starters since MW seemingly cant trust them to do their job…

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:55 PM

        Bringing Gio back out for the 7th was a mistake and luckily it didn’t cost the Nats as Barrett had a good outing.

      • manassasnatsfan - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:59 PM

        Get Chapman from Reds and while you are at it get JJ Hoover.

      • stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 11:00 PM

        Yeah! And Joey Votto too!

  10. stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:49 PM

    2013 Nats lost 5 of 7 heading into ASB and six straight coming out.

    Not sure where the mojo to prevent a similar fate for this team is supposed to come from.

  11. stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:50 PM

    If you bring in a new closer you might as well find a new home for Storen at the same time. He’s already been kneecapped once.

    • Mrsb loves the Nats - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:55 PM

      They can be interchangeable… and you can have either go in the 8th or 9th… I think its brilliant… and Chapman is a lefty..

      I would totally support the move…cuz as we know, sometimes the S is in the 8th…

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:57 PM

        Well said MrsB. The save tonight was in the 8th. I said that looking at the 3 batters that were coming up that inning. The 9th inning save is over-rated which is why Clippard was so valuable.

        Team over individuals.

      • therealjohnc - Jul 11, 2015 at 3:02 PM

        Of course, MW didn’t just turn the 8th inning over to someone, he played matchups last night. If he had gone to Rivero instead of Thornton and Rivero had given up the double to Wieters, the same commenters jumping down MW’s throat for bringing in “pitchers the O’s are familiar with” would be mad because MW “didn’t realize the matchups/track record.”

        The bottom line is the same either way: the manager is an idiot!!!!

  12. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:53 PM

    Trea Turner homered tonight going 1-3 and raising his average to .276.

    • stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:57 PM

      After starting 0-17 that’s pretty impressive. If circumstances presented a situation where he’d be playing every day I wouldn’t hesitate to bring him up. But I wouldn’t to it to play once a week coming off the bench.

    • Joe Seamhead - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:58 PM

      Actually the Chiefs split a double header tonight. Collectively for the night Trea went 3-6 with a triple, a homer, 2 runs scored, 3 RBI’s and was caught stealing.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 10, 2015 at 11:02 PM

        He’s getting locked-in!

      • Doc - Jul 10, 2015 at 11:34 PM

        Caught stealing? See I knew that Turner would never make it in the Bigs! LOL

  13. Mrsb loves the Nats - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:53 PM

    Although I had no issues with MW playing the match ups… I did find it odd that he would put Thornton in the game… seeing as how the O’s were quiet familiar with him. I thought he would put BT in there… or even Carpenter for the 8th.

    I knew he wouldnt put Drew in there…

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 10, 2015 at 11:00 PM

      Rivero had warmed up too.

  14. senators5 - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:55 PM

    This team has been remarkable with the injury prone position players several who may never come back to where they once were, mediocre BP and average catching at best, But there is joy in Mudville because the Nats are in the NL East!

  15. Andrew Cain - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:58 PM

    On a happier note: Turner goes 3 for 6 in the Syracuse doubleheader, with his second triple and his second homer.

    Just like that, the kid’s hitting .276.

    He’s made up for that 0-17 start in a hurry. In his last 10 games he’s now 15 for 36!

  16. rlndtln - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:59 PM

    Ever hear of a 5 out save especially with the ASG game coming up.If MW had brought in Drew he may not had to use him again before the ASG.I guarantee yoou if Drew is not used tomorrow and we need a 4or 5 out save sunday with the break coming up he will not use him.Mw will never do anything out of the box.The Mets use there closer for 5 out saves.We needed a win tonite.

  17. Mrsb loves the Nats - Jul 10, 2015 at 10:59 PM

    I hate losing to the O’s… Ugh… This is like losing to Auburn (Alabama fan)… Just not a great feeling…

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 10, 2015 at 11:01 PM

      I hate losing every game we lose. Everyone of them.
      Why on Earth pitch pitch 4 straight sliders with the last one just hanging.

  18. rlndtln - Jul 10, 2015 at 11:01 PM

    You need blow away relievers for the 8th and 9th.Chapman would be the answer.

    • stoatva - Jul 10, 2015 at 11:05 PM

      You want to open the bidding with Turner, or Giolito?

  19. Danny - Jul 10, 2015 at 11:11 PM

    We have to rely on near perfect pitching at this point as frustrating as it is. .

  20. Doc - Jul 10, 2015 at 11:37 PM

    Espi and Ramos were my bigger disappointments toghight. Ramos still hasn’t got his power stroke back.

  21. senators5 - Jul 11, 2015 at 12:20 AM

    How can they be disappointments when they are who they are? Streaker types who fail more than they produce,

  22. senators5 - Jul 11, 2015 at 12:26 AM

    To continue this point, the real disappointment is Anthony Rendon and his continuous injury plagued career, Some guys just never catch a break and Rendon since his sophomore year at Rice has had one injury after another. Simply stated, he is fragile goods who may never realize his full potential and that clearly would be shame.

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