The Nats have made 11 errors behind Jordan this year, and it seems those errors always come back to hurt him. Tonight, two throwing errors have led to two Braves runs, and Atlanta has a 2-1 lead after four innings.
In the first, Wilson Ramos opted to try and catch Jason Heyward stealing despite the fact that Justin Upton had just taken ball four, pushing Heyward to second without the stolen base being necessary.
Ramos’ unnecessary throw went into center field, allowing Heyward to take an extra base and scoot to third. Heyward then came around to score on Freddie Freeman’s double play ball.
In the third, Anthony Rendon tried to turn the back end of a potential 6-4-3 double play, only to have his throw sail wide of Adam LaRoche at first base. That let Paul Janish trot home from third, giving the Braves another easy run.
For whatever reason, Jordan always seems to get burned by shaky defense behind him or poor bullpen work in the late innings. The rookie has allowed five hits and walked three so far, but he’s gotten three double plays, allowing him to minimize the damage.
The Nats got one back in the top of the fourth when Bryce Harper scored on Ian Desmond’s double play grounder, to cut the Braves’ lead to 2-1.
Harper was hit in the back on a first-pitch Alex Wood breaking ball, prompting cheers from a Turner Field crowd that has been booing Harper heavily every time he’s been a part of the action tonight. Harper responded to the plunking by quickly turning and running down to first base, and once there he shared a laugh with Freeman.
This incident was just a bit more tame than the last time Harper was hit by a Braves pitcher. Julio Teheran’s first-pitch plunking of Harper two weeks ago, of course, ignited a benches-clearing incident and had Harper pretty riled up.
We’ll see whether there is any payback for that initial hit-by-pitch during this series, by the way. The Nats haven’t forgotten about that one.
Update: The Braves still lead 2-1 and both teams have gone to their bullpens here in the seventh inning.
Jordan is done after six solid innings, in which he surrendered seven hits and three walks, and allowed two Braves to cross the plate. Neither of the runs was earned, however, and Jordan’s ERA drops to 3.66 on the season.
This could be it for the rookie as his season innings total now sits at 142. Jordan’s innings limit was set at somewhere between 135-155 innings, and it’s entirely possible this is the last time we’ve seen him take the mound this season.
The Nats, meanwhile, weren’t able to get much of anything off Wood, who left after 6 1/3 innings having allowed one earned run on five hits. Wood didn’t walk a batter and struck out a career-high nine.
Overall, the Nats have struck out 10 times tonight and have gone 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position. Won’t win many games that way.
Craig Stammen is on for the bottom of the seventh.