The Nationals were down to their last strike of the eighth inning when Ivan Rodriguez got a curveball from Felipe Paulino, trailing 3-1 in a game where they hadn’t been competitive all night. But when Rodriguez sent a shot three-quarters of the way up the left field foul pole, he also ignited the Nationals’ offense for one of the team’s most stirring victories of the year.
Washington scored seven runs in the eighth inning, all with two outs, and came back to beat the Astros 8-4. The victory gave the Nationals 63 for the season, meaning they will avoid 100 losses for the first time since 2007.
John Lannan gave up three runs in the first, but pitched six shutout innings after that, and Tyler Clippard got his 10th win after striking out two batters in the eighth. Curiously, manager Jim Riggleman pulled Drew Storen with two outs in the ninth inning after the rookie was struggling, but Sean Burnett ended the game on the first pitch he threw.
I’ll have more from the clubhouse in a little bit.