Nationals rally in 10th to avoid sweep by Astros

Nationals rally in 10th to avoid sweep by Astros


Jun 15, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher MacKenzie Gore (1) reacts after being leaving the game against the Houston Astros in the sixth inning at Minute Maid Park.
Image: Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Lane Thomas and Keibert Ruiz produced RBI singles in the top of the 10th inning as the Washington Nationals averted a series sweep with a 4-1 win over the Houston Astros on Thursday

The Nationals sent eight batters to the plate in their three-run 10th, six against Astros reliever Phil Maton (0-2), who surrendered the hits to Thomas and Ruiz and also hit Jeimer Candelario with a pitch that loaded the bases for Corey Dickerson, who then worked a walk for a 3-1 lead

Ruiz drove a 2-2 slider from Astros closer Ryan Pressly into the right-field seats for his eighth home run leading off the ninth, snapping a scoreless tie in the process. Pressly surrendered three unearned runs in the ninth on Wednesday before the Astros rallied for a 5-4 victory

But as they did the night before, the Astros lifted Pressly off the hook with a ninth-inning tally off Nationals reliever Hunter Harvey, who allowed a leadoff double to Kyle Tucker and a two-out single to pinch-hitter Yainer Diaz that plated Tucker with the tying run and forced extra innings

Nationals left-hander MacKenzie Gore and Astros right-hander Cristian Javier engaged in a riveting standoff so evenly matched that both had faced 18 batters through five innings

Gore retired the Astros in order only twice, doing so in the first and fifth innings. But his ability to record timely strikeouts helped him mitigate damage in the second, third and fourth innings

Gore struck out Corey Julks to end the second, two batters after he had induced a double-play grounder from Jose Abreu that erased Tucker, who had reached via a leadoff single.

Gore fanned Abreu in the fourth after Tucker again produced a leadoff single. Gore further helped his cause by picking off Tucker at first base for the second out of the inning.

Nationals reliever Mason Thompson recorded a called third strike on Abreu to snuff a sixth-inning threat and preserve a scoreless outing for Gore, who allowed four hits and three walks with four strikeouts

Javier allowed five hits — all singles — and did not walk a batter over six scoreless innings. He retired the side in order in the first, third and fifth and worked around three hits in the second before sidestepping hits from Dickerson and Candelario in the fourth and sixth.

Ruiz was the lone baserunner to reach scoring position against Javier. In the second inning, he singled and advanced to second on Dominic Smith’s single to right.

–Field Level Media


Original source here

#Nationals #rally #10th #avoid #sweep #Astros

About the Author

Anthony Barnett
Anthony is the author of the Science & Technology section of ANH.