Right-hander Taylor Jordan made it through four innings Sunday but then was pulled from game. The bullpen was unable to keep the game within reach and the Padres defeated the Nationals 4-2.
Manager Matt Williams said Jordan had been feeling under the weather since late last night.
"He showed up this morning running a fever," Williams said. "I don't know if it was the flu or what. There was some question as to whether he would even start. But we gave him a bag of fluids and he ate something this morning. Fastball velocity was way down, weak out there. So he gave up what he could give us today. He was weak, didn't feel well at all today."
Jordan was sitting down with his head in his hands as reporters arrived for postgame interviews. He had his red Washington Nationals hoodie pulled up over his head.
"I have had this headache since early this morning," Jordan said. "I didn't really sleep last night. I have got the chills, I am hot."
But Jordan said he was able to battle through as best he could. He limited the Padres to one run and three hits.
"It wasn't so bad out there on the mound. The only thing is just the headache, it just doesn't go away," Jordan said. "Other than that, I wasn't really focused on much besides getting a couple of outs."
Jordan said the pain in his head was moving around and he was in obvious discomfort.
"Right now, it is up here," Jordan said, pointing to his forehead. "(Now) it was starting to go back towards the back. It wasn't like totally unbearable or anything. I wasn't feeling the best. I got the flu."
Second baseman Danny Espinosa was hit by a pitch on his right knee in the second inning and stayed in the game for two more innings. After four innings, Williams decided he had seen enough of Jordan and Espinosa.
"He took the ball off the kneecap," Williams said of Espinosa. "It started to swell. And his spot was the spot when we had to get Taylor out of there. It was the logical thing to do. He made the last out of that inning. Taylor would not have been able to go any further. So I figured we would double-switch there."
Espinosa showed his knee to reporters after the game. It was bruised and slightly swollen. The knee also showed the stitches from the baseball where Padres starter Ian Kennedy hit him with the pitch.
He said he could play if he had to Monday, but welcomes the scheduled off-day before the Nats start a two-game series in Houston.
After Jordan departed, the Nationals bullpen provided an uneven performance, starting with left-hander Ross Detwiler, who allowed three runs on four hits in 1 1/3 innings and took the loss.
"I couldn't throw a strike," Detwiler said. "It is something you are out there you have make an adjustment. I didn't. Pretty much cost us the game. I felt fine in the bullpen. It just didn't translate over to the game."
Williams needed Detwiler to eat up innings, but the plan backfired.
"We try to get him in situations where he can go one plus (innings), but it has been sporadic," Williams said. "We will look to get him I there more often, more regular basis. If the games go our way, we will see if we can get him in there more lefty-lefty matchup, more regular basis."
It was very uncharacteristic to see reliever Aaron Barrett come into a game in the sixth and walk two batters. The bases were loaded, so the walks scored two runs for San Diego. A 2-1 game turned into a 4-1 Padres lead.
"We had an opportunity tie the ball game up, could have been 2-2 there," Barrett said. "There is no excuse for it. For me, I didn't execute my pitches. I let the team down."
Barrett believes he has found the mechanical issue that might have caused him problems during Sunday's outing. Barrett faced four batters and three of them reached base.
"I looked at some film. I felt like I was rushing, rushing pretty bad," Barrett said. "My leg drive was going forward before my arm had a chance to even catch up. Just something maybe small, mechanical that I got to fix. But at the end of the day, no matter what you do mechanically or mentally, physically you got to find a way to get guys out and I didn't do that today."
Barrett said it is not easy to try to correct a mechanical issue with his delivery in the middle of the game.
"Yeah, absolutely. But this is the big leagues," he said. "There is no excuse for it. I had an opportunity to leave those guys there. I didn't do my job. But I just got to keep getting better and get them next time."