clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

José Ureña and Max Scherzer disappoint, Nationals secure the victory 9-5

The starters could not get it done tonight, but everything else clicked for the Nationals.

Washington Nationals  v Miami Marlins Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images

José Ureña: 6 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 7 K

Max Scherzer: 6 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

The Friday night pitching matchup looked exciting on paper, but did not deliver as much. José Ureña had a pretty good game if you ignore the two home runs he gave up. Max Scherzer did not perform to his usual standards, either. He was very hittable and the Fish took advantage of this. Despite that, they could not hang with the Nats into the later innings and dropped the series opener by a final score of 9-5.

The second inning is when the action started to occur. Ureña started the inning by striking out Juan Soto. The next batter up, Pedro Severino, was hit by a pitch. Michael A. Taylor then jumped on Ureña’s first big mistake: a ball down the middle of the plate, which Taylor ripped into left field to make it 2-0 Nationals. Keep in mind that Taylor had a poor .186 batting average coming into the game.

Scherzer was wheeling and dealing against the Marlins until the fourth inning. Starlin Castro started off the rally with a single. Scherzer would then get into his own hit by pitch trouble. Brian Anderson would take the hit, putting men on first and second base. Derek Dietrich would then move the runners over on a ground ball to Matt Adams at first. In a rare example of Fish success with runners in scoring position, Miguel Rojas stroked a line drive to center field, evening the score 2-2.

The Nationals would respond again in the sixth inning. Anthony Rendon singled to get on base before Matt Adams blasted one to dead center. The home run ball continued to hurt Ureña in what was an otherwise strong start.

In the bottom half of the inning, Scherzer would make the same mistake as Ureña did. Dietrich made him regret a leadoff walk to Anderson with a big home run to right field. It was his fourth straight game with an extra-base hit, matching the longest such streak of his career (also May 16-19, 2015).

Unfortunately, the exciting comeback was largely overshadowed by a key loss. Later in the sixth, Martín Prado suffered a left hamstring injury running down the first-base line. Following the game, Prado admitted that “there is something there,” referring to significant structural damage detected from an ultrasound (h/t Joe Frisaro, He’s expected to be placed on the disabled list on Saturday.

“Nothing went right after that,” in the words of Don Mattingly. Nick Wittgren struggled through his worst appearance of the season, allowing two hits and two walks. Adam Conley attempted to bail him out, but couldn’t put away Bryce Harper. His two-run double padded the lead to 7-4.

Lewis Brinson came to the plate in the bottom of the seventh, representing the last glimmer of hope with the potential tying runs on base...but he struck out swinging to end the threat.

Odrisamer Despaigne made his long-awaited return from a forearm strain by pitching the eighth inning. And if only a small consolation, the Marlins kept it close enough to force the Nats to use closer Sean Doolittle. After recording five outs, we’ll see how that may affect his availability for the remainder of the series.

The Marlins look to continue ahead as Wei-Yin Chen takes on Tanner Roark at 4:10pm Saturday afternoon.

Courtesy of Fangraphs

Kingfish: Michael Taylor (.343 WPA)

Flounder: Nick Wittgren (-.357)

Play of the game: Taylor’s home run and all-around good game in his native South Florida

Attendance: 7,512

Please leave any Icthy picks in the comments below. Remember, we introduced a new grand prize for the contest this season!

Today's Lineups

Trea Turner - SS Martin Prado - 3B
Bryce Harper - RF J.T. Realmuto - C
Anthony Rendon - 3B Justin Bour - 1B
Matt Adams - 1B Starlin Castro - 2B
Juan Soto - LF Brian Anderson - RF
Pedro Severino - C Derek Dietrich - LF
Michael Taylor - CF Miguel Rojas - SS
Max Scherzer - RHP Lewis Brinson - CF
Wilmer Difo - 2B Jose Urena - RHP

Pitching Matchup

Name Team IP ERA FIP K/9 fWAR
Name Team IP ERA FIP K/9 fWAR
José Ureña Marlins 57.1 4.55 3.72 7.06 0.8
Max Scherzer Nationals 65.2 1.78 1.8 14.25 2.8
Courtesy of Fangraphs

Matchup Summary: The Miami Marlins are coming off an exciting two-run ninth inning come back against the Mets. The Marlins took the series 2-1, and have won two in a row. The Washington Nationals on the other hand, took 2 out of three against the San Diego Padres. The Nationals are currently tied for fourth place with the Mets, sitting at 26-22. The Marlins are sitting comfortably in last place, with a record of 19-30.

Jose Urena will look for his elusive first win. This will be no easy task as the Fish will be taking on the Dominant Max Scherzer. Scherzer is having another Cy Young worthy year, and the Marlins will have to be firing on all cylinders if they want to compete tonight.

Game Thread Question: Will José Ureña’s first win be a quality start? (A quality start is defined as a pitcher going six innings and giving up no more than three runs).