The No. 1 rule of being on a baseball beat is to never talk about how quickly a game is moving.
So I won’t. I’ll just say that Gio Gonzalez and Astros starter Wandy Rodriguez have been incredibly efficient through five and a half innings of play, and those of us in the press box thank them for it.
Gonzalez has been cruising right along so far tonight, allowing just two hits and two walks through six frames, and he has a 1-0 lead going to the bottom of the sixth.
Prior to a Jose Altuve single leading off the sixth, Gonzalez had retired 13 straight hitters, setting down the side in order from the second through the fifth innings. He needed to work out of a bit of a jam in the sixth as the Astros got runners on the corners with two outs, but J.D. Martinez grounded into a force out to end the threat.
Overall, Gonzalez has struck out six and needed just 78 pitches to get through his six innings of work.
Going back to last start, the Nationals lefty has now thrown 13 straight shutout innings, allowing just four hits and two walks with 13 strikeouts.
Yeah, he’s been pretty good.
LaRoche now has a team-best 13 RBIs.
Update: Gonzalez is out after seven stellar innings, and the Nats still lead 1-0 as Tyler Clippard comes out of the ‘pen here in the eighth.
Making his second start at Nats Park, Gonzalez nearly matched what was a fantastic first home outing. Tonight, Gonzalez allowed just two hits and two walks over his seven scoreless frames, striking out eight.
Overall in two starts at Nats Park, here’s Gonzalez’s line: 14 innings, no runs, four hits, two walks, 15 strikeouts.