The Nationals have finally returned home for the first time since July 20 and left-hander Gio Gonzalez looked to get off to a good start in front of the Nationals Park faithful. He started that last game at home and recorded a no-decision in a 5-4 win over the Brewers.
Despite falling to the Reds on Saturday, Gonzalez allowed only one run on four hits over seven frames.
Against the Phillies with one away in the first, Gonzalez surrendered a hit to Jimmy Rollins but then recorded a pair of outs to end the inning.
In the third, Andres Blanco began the inning with a clean base hit to left field. One out later, Ben Revere also singled to put two men on.
But Gonzalez induced a pair of fly outs to end the threat.
Left-hander Cliff Lee, rumored for weeks to possibly be leaving the Phillies in a trade, started and got the Nationals out in order in his first and second innings, recording a pair of strikeouts.
No score headed to the bottom of the third.
Update: Lee left the game with two outs in the bottom of the third. It appears to be a left arm injury and he looks clearly frustrated on the MASN cameras from the Phillies dugout.
Prior to the injury, Danny Espinosa smacked a double for the first hit of the game for the Nationals.
Left-hander Antonio Bastardo replaced Lee. Denard Span lined out to center field to end the inning.
No score through three innings.
Lee threw only 2 2/3 innings, allowing no runs on one hit with no walks and four strikeouts. He threw just 31 pitches, 24 for strikes.
Update II: The Phillies chased Gonzalez in the fourth. The first four batters reached base on three hits and a walk. Grady Sizemore delivered a two-run double and the Phillies led 2-0.
Pinch-hitter Dominic Brown’s fielder’s choice and Ben Revere’s single plated two more runs and the Phillies were up 4-0.
A Chase Utley fielder’s choice allowed another run to score and it was 5-0 Phillies.
The Phillies batted around and still there were only two outs. They had five hits off of Gonzalez in the fourth alone.
Gonzalez was lifted for reliever Ross Detwiler.
The Phillies medical staff reported that Lee left the game with a reoccurence of the left flexor pronator strain.
Gonzalez lasted 3 2/3 innings, allowing five runs on eight hits with one walk and two strikeouts. He threw 77 pitches, 47 for strikes.
So tonight’s starting pitchers combined for 108 total pitches, which is about half of what you would expect from the pair in a normal outing.
Update III: Wilson Ramos had a run-scoring single in the bottom of the fourth to get the Nationals on the board. However, an Ian Desmond double play grounder ended the inning.
Heading to the bottom of the fifth, the Phillies are up 5-1.
Update IV: Span provided a two-run single in the fifth, cutting the Philles advantage to 5-3.
Update V: Jerry Blevins was unable to keep the deficit at just two runs. Ben Revere singled to open the sixth. A wild pitch got him to second. Rollins added a run-scoring single and it was 6-3. After a pair of stolen bases by Rollins, Chase Utley brought him home with a sac fly to left field. The Phillies are up 7-3 as we head to the bottom of the sixth.
Update VI: The Nationals added a RBI single by Espinosa in the seventh, cutting the Phillies lead to 7-4. With two out and two men on, reliever Ken Giles hit 100 mph with his fastball to strikeout Jayson Werth and end the inning.
Update VII: Five more hits for the Phillies in the the eighth against Craig Stammen, and Philadelphia now leads 10-4. The big hit was a Marlon Byrd two-run single. He has four RBIs on the night. Sizemore contributed another run-scoring single.
Update VIII: The Phillies finish off the Nationals 10-4 with a 17-hit attack, scoring five runs in the fourth to set the tone. Sizemore finished with three hits and three RBIs. Span had two hits and two RBIs for the Nationals.
Gonzalez falls to 6-7. Bastardo got the final out of the third and picked up his fifth victory.
The Nationals have lost four of their last six games. It is only their second loss in the past seven games against the Phillies.