Jul 19, 2015, 10:21 AM EDT
On a scorching hot afternoon at Nationals Park that also happens to be Star Wars Day, the Nats and Dodgers close out their weekend series with one of the best pitching matchups you will see all season.
Starting for the Nationals will be Max Scherzer (10-7, 2.11), who is second in the majors in ERA. Starting for the Dodgers will be Zack Greinke (8-2, 1.39) who has the best ERA in baseball. Both were All-Stars and Greinke started the game for the National League.
Hits and runs will be hard to come by for both teams. The Nationals are coming off a tough outing against Clayton Kershaw and the road from here on out will not get any easier. Today they face Greinke and after that follows the New York Mets who will trot out Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard.
Stay tuned for updates throughout the game…
LOS ANGELES DODGERS at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 1:35 p.m. EDT
TV: TBS, Ch. 9, MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: 106.7 FM, 1500 AM, XM 184
Weather: Humid, 92 degrees, Wind 2 mph in from RF
3B Yunel Escobar
2B Danny Espinosa
RF Bryce Harper
1B Clint Robinson
C Wilson Ramos
LF Matt den Dekker
SS Ian Desmond
CF Michael Taylor
RHP Max Scherzer
CF Joc Pederson
2B Howie Kendrick
1B Adrian Gonzalez
LF Andre Ethier
C Yasmani Grandal
RF Yasiel Puig
3B Alberto Callaspo
SS Jimmy Rollins
RHP Zack Greinke
HP Bill Miller (cc)
1B Doug Eddings
2B Jim Wolf
3B Adrian Johnson
1:35 p.m. — Darth Vader helped deliver the lineup card and Princess Leia said ‘play ball.’ This game is underway.
1:57 p.m. — The score remains 0-0 after one inning, though Scherzer had to work a lot harder to toss up a zero than Greinke did. Scherzer gave up back-to-back one-out singles to Kendrick and Gonzalez, and walked Grandal to load the bases with two outs. He then got Puig to strike out swinging on a 95 mile per hour fastball to end the frame on his 23rd pitch. Greinke threw only 12 pitches and struck out Espinosa and Harper. The walk to Grandal for Scherzer ended a streak of 39 2/3 consecutive innings without allowing a free pass.
2:10 p.m. — We are still scoreless through two innings, as both pitchers pitched dominant frames in the second. Scherzer has thrown 33 pitches and has three strikeouts. Greinke has used 27 pitches and has four strikeouts. He is sitting at 94-95 on his fastball, despite averaging just 91.3 mph so far this season.
2:26 p.m. — It’s still 0-0 after three innings, but the Nats got their first baserunner on in the third. Taylor singled to left field with one out to finally get something going against Greinke. Taylor, however, was picked off at first to end the inning. On to the fourth we go.
2:47 p.m. — The Dodgers are on the board to break the scoreless tie. They got their run on a wild pitch from Scherzer that scored Ethier. The Dodgers outfielder led off with a double to the left field corner and moved to third on a sac bunt by Grandal. Scherzer then sailed a slider inside that got past Ramos and to the backstop. Scherzer is at 68 pitches through four, while Greinke has thrown 53. It’s 1-0 L.A.
3:03 p.m. — So, this Greinke guy might be pretty good. He still has the Nats off the board through five innings. That makes 40 2/3 straight scoreless frames for him. He and Kershaw have combined to throw 60 2/3 straight scoreless innings. Yeesh, that’s impressive. Dodgers lead 1-0 with the sixth inning up next.
3:25 p.m. — Scherzer gave the Nats a valiant effort, but with the way Greinke is going, it may not be enough. He completed six innings, allowing one earned run on seven hits before he was taken out of the game in the bottom of the inning. The offense was unable to score either, so it’s still 1-0 Dodgers heading to the seventh.
3:59 p.m. — Unfortunately for the Nationals, Greinke keeps Greinke-ing. He pitches his seventh scoreless inning and the Nats still trail 1-0 heading to the eighth inning.
4:17 p.m. — Nothing doing for the Nats once again, as Greinke continues to fluster the lineup. He’s likely done for the day. If that’s the case, he pitched eight scoreless innings, allowing no runs on three hits, 11 strikeouts and one walk.
4:47 p.m. — It’s over, folks. The Nats fall 5-0 to the Dodgers and drop this potential playoff preview series. Things got out of hand for the Nats in the ninth inning as the Dodgers scored four runs in the top of the frame to put the game out of reach.
FINAL NL EAST STANDINGS
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2015 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.
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