Oh, bother -- Nationals 9, Cubs 3

The Chicago Cubs put up a bit of a fight in the end, but ultimately lost 9-3 to the Washington Nationals on Friday afternoon.

Trea Turner led off against Cubs starter Jon Lester with a flyout, but Adam Eaton followed with a solo home run. Anthony Rendon grounded out and Juan Soto lined out after and the inning ended with the Nationals with an early 1-0 lead.

The Cubs couldn’t manage anything against National starter Aníbal Sánchez in the bottom of the first. Jason Heyward grounded out, Nicholas Castellanos struck out swinging, and Kris Bryant flew out to left.

The Nationals scored again in the third with a sacrifice fly from Turner to increase the lead to 2-0.

Two more runs were added to put the Cubs behind 4-0 in the fourth inning. Rendon led off with a line out, but Soto and Howie Kendrick singled, followed by an RBI single from Kurt Suzuki. Brian Dozier hit another single, and after walking Robles, Sánchez got an RBI on a sacrifice bunt.

After one-out singles from Eaton and Rendon, Pedro Strop replaced Lester. Lester went 4.1 innings with nine hits, six runs (all earned), one walk, and two strikeouts. Strop got a strikeout from Kendrick but then hit Suzuki with a pitch to load the bases. Rendon then scored on a wild pitch, Dozier walked, and Robles singled to bring the score to 7-0.

Tyler Chatwood pitched the sixth and Addison Russell entered the game at shortstop. Chatwood had a 1-2-3 inning with a groundout from Turner, a flyout from Eaton, and called strikeout from Rendon.

Soto led off the seventh with a home run off of new Cubs pitcher David Phelps. Ian Happ also entered the game at center field. Suzuki then flew out to center and Dozier struck out, and the Nationals now led by 8-0.

Steve Cishek worked a scoreless eighth for the Cubs. He got a swinging strikeout from Robles. After singles from Sánchez and Turner, he got Eaton to pop out and Rendon to ground out to end the inning.

The Cubs sent Derek Holland to the mound in the ninth. He faced Soto in the leadoff spot, who walked. He would come around to score on a double from Kendrick; although Happ made an effort to catch the ball at center, he was ultimately unable to recover the ball. Holland was able to set down the rest of the batters in order, with strikeouts from Suzuki and Dozier and a pop out to short from Robles.

Sánchez returned to the mound in the bottom of the ninth and walked Tony Kemp. Kemp advanced to second on a ground out from Russell, and Victor Caratini reached second on a throwing error by Rendon at third base. Kemp scored on the play, and at this time Sánchez was pulled in favor of reliever Matt Grace. Grace gave up a double to Castellanos on which Caratini scored. The Cubs were now trailing 9-2. Holland was called out on strikes for the second out, and Castellanos took third on defensive interference with Rizzo at bat. Rizzo singled and took second with Happ at the plate. Unfortunately, Happ grounded out to third to end the game.

 

WPA CHART

Source: FanGraphs

Comments

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  • I'm not trying to dump on Bryant, and I know its not an either or situation with Baez. I'm ecstatic we have both, but today's game demonstrates my issue with WAR. I think Bryant should have been charged with an E on Robles hit. Baez saves a base and almost gets Robles at 2B on a bad throw. Later Baez makes a great play to stop a ball destined for CF, and nabbed the runner at 3B on a really heads up play. Then Bryant is playing a deep 3B on an obvious bunt situation leading to another run.

  • In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    I thought Bryant should have been charged with 2 errors today

  • In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    What does that have to do without WAR?

  • In reply to rbrucato:

    Have to do with WAR? WAR is not the end all be all stat.

  • It was those gastly uniforms on both sides, folks. Who ever thought that up, Rob Manfred? Thought I was in a baseball version of Spy vs. Spy.

  • In reply to wthomson:

    Lol......the best part of Mad Magazine other than the tri-fold back page......

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    In reply to wthomson:

    Star Wars Storm Troopers for sure , especially with the white batters helmets ! No respect for the game . then the goofy names on the back ! What are they doing to our beloved National Game !

  • Washington's game log, going back to August 11 and including today:
    7-4 W
    7-6 W
    3-1 W
    17-7 W
    2-1 W
    14-15 L
    16-8 W
    13-0 W
    1-4 L
    11-1 W
    7-1 W
    9-3 W
    That's an average of 8.916 runs per game..no wonder they're 10-2 during this stretch. Hopefully, they're due some regression in the next two games but this is a ridiculously hot team right now.

  • Man, the Nats and Mets are on serious rolls right now. This is a really bad time to not hit or have a bad start- all of which happened today. Thank goodness for Hendricks yesterday or it could've been worse. You kinda have to wonder how much Lester has in the tank...

  • In reply to Ronson54:

    I said this the other day, if the playoffs started now, I'd be using Q and Yu as our 1/2 combination to pitch on the road because they have pitched better on the road. Both have been pretty locked in and dominant, yet Yu's still having problems going a little deeper into games. Then go with Hendricks and Hamels for games 3 and 4 at Wrigley, where they both are basically Cy Young quality pitchers at Wrigley. I think that would help win a postseason series.

  • In reply to Cubber Lang:

    Is the reason you then go with the hot hand and forget the laptops....

  • In reply to Cubber Lang:

    I think that strategy would be their best bet in the playoffs, but I'm concerned about just getting there at this point.

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    And...back to 2nd place.

  • Here it comes. Ol Bang-Bang does it again. A hit batter, walk and two run double and the game is out of reach. He has really lost it all. Surely they will not attempt to re-sign him next season.

  • In reply to veteran:

    If he’s healthy and going this bad , I doubt they try to sign him.

    You may have to give his nickname to Kimbrel. Kimbrel has 5 HR in 15 innings. Strop has 5 in ~31 innings.

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    Could someone remind me who Ol Bang-Bang is?

  • StL beat COL, but NYM lost to ATL in extras. The new Magic Numbers:

    Division: 36 (no change)
    Playoffs (WC): 33

  • Obviously, 2019 stretch run is not going to be easy. It is as if the Cubs can hardly afford to lose a game. The Cards are red hot. I think that this Cub team is not as tired as 2018 when we played so many games without a day off. I'll feel better when Zo and Willy are back and in the groove. It's a fun time of year for baseball fans with teams in the mix. Go Cubs!

  • It's going to be a very tough stretch run, they are going to have to earn it and I like that.

    If they make it means that they've overcome the road woes, at least partly, and will have been fighting hard the whole way. I think that is the best way to enter the playoffs. Coasting in on a huge lead, ala the Dodgers, or just squeezing in because the closest oppenent sucked a little more (last year) are bad ways to enter the playoffs.

    If this team makes it, I want to see a confident, loose group thats been playing well for a few weeks.

  • This season has pointed out the inconsistency of the teams play and makes me wonder if they can even make a respectable showing, if they have enough in the tank to even make the playoffs.

    Its funny, but I find that I care less about this team than any other I can recall.

    I think I'd have to go back to the early days of the rebuild or the last of the Dusty Baker era.

  • In reply to brownjay:

    If it’s funny to you then you are one of the few who are laughing......enjoy your gloom.....the rest of us will be here supporting......the eras you are talking about were when they were 18 games out.....

  • Always a supporter, just not an active fan paying as much attention as I have in the past.

    Partly due to the changes in the game which have made it less entertaining and partly due to this team lacking the same brand apeal as other configurations.

    I have hung with the Cubs through some very dark years and with more fervor and interest than this team.

  • In reply to brownjay:

    Ok, .......then please accept my apology for the snark.

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