After putting up six runs in each of their last two games against the Astros, the Nationals managed just three hits in a 3-0 loss to the Braves tonight, pushing Atlanta back to within 1/2 a game of Washington in the National League East and adding to the Nats’ issues against their top division rival.
Two of the Nats’ three hits today were of the extra-base variety. Denard Span doubled with two outs in the sixth and Jayson Werth doubled leading off the seventh. Neither guy went any further than that.
Braves righty Gavin Floyd was tremendous in his six innings of work before getting hit with an awful bit of luck. The Maryland native, making just his ninth start of the season after coming back from Tommy John surgery, fractured his olecranon - a small bone in his elbow - on his first pitch of the seventh inning. He had family and friends in attendance tonight and now will be out for an extended period of time.
Three Braves relievers closed down the win after Floyd left the ballgame, with Craig Kimbrel notching his 21st save of the season.
Here’s manager Matt Williams after the loss:
On what made Floyd so tough tonight: “Standing over in the dugout, it looked like he had a really good curveball. Certainly, his fastball for strikes, but the curveball was the difference. Got Jayson a couple times on it, got Desi a couple times on it. It was good.”
On how disappointing it was to leave Werth at second in the seventh: “It’s disappointing, but they threw a three-hit shutout at us. They pitched really well.”
On Floyd’s injury (the question was asked before the diagnosis was made public): “You don’t want to see anybody get hurt, and it’s a long road back. We hope everything’s all right. You never want to see anybody leave the mound. Never want to see anybody get hurt. Everybody competes and everybody wants to win, but you don’t want to see injuries, either.”
On if there was anything the Nats could have done different from an approach perspective tonight: “I don’t think so. I think it was just a good performance by their pitching tonight. Like we talked about earlier, we take it one day at a time. They got us tonight, and we’re going to do it again tomorrow. Got to be ready to play.”
On Jordan Zimmermann, who allowed two runs over seven strong innings: “He was good. For him, Chris Johnson came up with a base hit with runners in scoring position. That’s the difference in the game today. A ball that squeaked through the infield. Not much you can do about it. First pitch to Freddie, base hit and then a base hit after that and then a ball that was into the outfield. Made good pitches, they got good wood on it, they came up with a big hit.”
On Jerry Blevins, who took a comebacker off his knee in the eighth: “Yeah, he’s OK. Got him on the outside of the knee. He’ll be a little sore tomorrow, but he’s fine.”