A common theme is emerging (Nats routed in Game 3)

For the series, the Nationals have left 27 runners on base and gone 3-for-23 with runners in scoring position.

They’ve left at least one runner on in every inning so far today, and have stranded runners in scoring position in four of the five frames.

In the fifth, they left the bases loaded when Michael Morse flied out to end the inning.

Edwin Jackson won’t be thrilled with his effort this afternoon, but he’s far from the main problem.

Chris Carpenter has allowed five hits, walked two batters and the Cardinals have made an error behind him. The chances have been there. But no one has been able to produce.

The Nats now trail 5-0 in the middle of the sixth, after Craig Stammen allowed a run in the top half of the inning on a Daniel Descalso sac fly.

Stammen hasn’t been the same guy this postseason, now sporting an 11.57 ERA in three appearances. He’s been battling an illness lately, which could be part of the reason for his struggles.

It’s a deep hole, and one the Nats will need to climb out of by stringing together hits and delivering in the clutch. They’ve been able to do one of those two so far this series, just not the other.

Update: After Jayson Werth popped out to end the sixth and strand two more runners, we can update those abysmal offensive numbers.

The Nats now are 0-for-8 with runners in scoring position and have stranded 10 today.

They knocked Carpenter out of the game in the sixth, but rookie Trevor Rosenthal got Werth to pop to first to end the threat and leave Ian Desmond and Steve Lombardozzi stranded.

Update II: It’s now 6-0 Cardinals after Nats reliever Christian Garcia loaded the bases in the seventh and then walked in a run.

The Nationals’ starting pitchers are struggling. Their offense is struggling. Their bullpen is struggling.

After going down in order in the bottom of the seventh, they’re now six offensive outs from playing in an elimination game tomorrow.

Update III: It now falls on Ross Detwiler.

The Nationals were routed by the Cardinals 8-0 this afternoon, and now find themselves one loss from elimination.

They were outhit 14-7 today, went 0-for-8 with runners in scoring position and stranded 11 runners. Jackson got roughed up, but with the exception of Drew Storen, so did every Nats pitcher to take the mound this afternoon.

Detwiler will get the ball tomorrow in Game 4. The Nats will need a dandy of an outing from him, but they’ll need a heck of a lot more from their offense than they’ve gotten the last two games, as well.

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