Washington 5, Astros 0
by Mr. Happy
Given that tonight’s 5-0 whitewashing of the Home Nine by the Nationals was the eleventh time that the ball club has been shutout, it still doesn’t get any easier to take. Tonight’s winning pitcher, Jordan Zimmermann, served notice very early on that he was going to be virtually impossible to beat once staked to a two run lead, being able to thread the tiny needle that HPU Ed Hickox constructed for a strike zone.
As well as tonight’s losing pitcher, Lucas Harrell, pitched for his five frames and 100 pitches, the walk that he surrendered on at least one stingy bullshit call to Ryan Zimmerman came back to haunt him in the fourth inning, where the Nats scored all the runs that they’d need tonight in order to dispatch the Astros. Zimmermann scattered three hits, two of which were for extra sacks, and struck out 11 in his six innings of work, while the Astros could manage but two hits the rest of the way en route to the white washing. A sore lack of clutch hitting, 0-6 with runners in scoring position, again plagued the Astros, who stranded six runners tonight. Additionally, none of the Astros baserunners could advance past 2B tonight, despite two lead off base hits.
Nevertheless, Michael Morse added two long balls to his season’s total of ten in the sixth and eighth innings, respectively. Ryan Zimmerman drove home a last run with a sacrifice fly in the top of the ninth inning in order to cement the win and a series sweep for the Nationals, who now have the best road record in the major leagues.
Tonight’s result was as predictable as the results have been lately, with no surprises from the Home Nine, so the sparse number of GameZone denizens turned their focus on the goings on at Red Rocks, which, frankly, was more interesting than tonight’s ball game. The Astros, losers now of five in a row and now one for August, strive to increase their stranglehold on next year’s No. 1 pick while entertaining the Brewers. I can’t wait!