Nats no-hit for first time, ending longest active streak in majors (updated)

gore after homer gray

PHILADELPHIA – It has never happened. Not in the team’s 18-year existence since relocating to Washington, D.C., in 2005.

The Nationals have never been no-hit.

In fact, entering today, the franchise had the longest active streak of avoiding a no-hitter dating back 24 years, 0 months and 22 days to David Cone’s perfect game against the Expos at Yankee Stadium on July 18, 1999.

That streak came to an end tonight as Michael Lorenzen, making his first home start for the Phillies since being acquired at the trade deadline from the Tigers, no-hit the Nationals in a 7-0 win in front of 30,406 raucous fans at Citizens Bank Park.

“That was the coolest moment of my baseball career, going out there for the ninth,” Lorenzen told reporters after the game. “Just walking out of the dugout and hearing the fans go wild, it gave me the chills. It gave me that boost of energy that I needed for sure."

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Nats to start using six-man rotation


PHILADELPHIA – What has long been under consideration – and even to a lesser point expected – came to fruition this afternoon: The Nationals will start using a six-man rotation with Joan Adon getting inserted into the mix.

This has been a topic of conversation for some time now. It was almost more a matter of when not if.

And it makes sense for this young pitching staff. Josiah Gray and Jake Irvin are approaching their career highs in innings for a single season, and MacKenzie Gore has already surpassed his career high. And Irvin and Gore both have recent injury histories.

As for the veterans, Patrick Corbin has proven his durability as a starter throughout the course of a major league season. But Trevor Williams was used mostly as a reliever last year and has already pitched the most innings he has since 2019.

“We actually decided we're gonna go to a six-man rotation,” manager Davey Martinez announced during his pregame media session. “Adon's gonna be plopped in that spot. Just because with Jake Irvin, with Gore, even Josiah, I know he could finish out, he could throw a lot more innings, Trevor Williams who's been a reliever, we want to make sure that we keep their innings intact and understand what we're trying to do — not only for now but the future. So it made a lot of sense to us to bring Adon up here, give him an opportunity to pitch, but also stretch out our pitchers so that we can manage their innings a little bit better.

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Game 115 lineups: Nats at Phillies

gore pitching gray

PHILADELPHIA – Two games down, two to go in this four-game set in the City of Brotherly Love.

After splitting yesterday’s doubleheader, the Nationals have won five of their last six games, six of their eight and seven of their last 10. Don’t look now, but they are only 1 ½ games back of the Mets in the National League East and down to single digits in the Wild Card race at only nine games back of the Reds and Cubs for the final playoff spot.

Don’t want to get anyone’s hopes up, but just for comparison’s sake, they were 13 ½ games behind the fourth-place Marlins and 24 ½ games out of the final Wild Card spot at this time last year.

MacKenzie Gore will get his shot at some of the Phillies’ left-handed power hitters tonight. The southpaw is 6-8 with a 4.34 ERA and 1.420 WHIP in 22 starts. He too will be tasked to keep the Phillies in the ballpark after they hit five home runs between the two games yesterday. Gore has allowed 1.4 home runs per nine innings on the year, but has allowed four longballs over his four starts since the All-Star break.

He’s also looking for a little payback after getting knocked around for seven runs in just 2 ⅔ innings in his start here in early July.

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After early demotions, Machado providing strength in Nats bullpen

Andres Machado

PHILADELPHIA – Andrés Machado wasn’t really supposed to be in this situation. And if he was going to be, a lot of things would have to go right for him, starting with his own production.

The right-hander, who posted a respectable 3.41 ERA in 95 innings over 91 games for the Nationals between 2021-22, was the odd man out when Corey Dickerson signed in January. The reliever was designated for assignment to make room for the veteran outfielder on the roster.

Machado cleared waivers and was sent outright to Triple-A Rochester. He only pitched in 10 games the season with the Red Wings before the Nats selected his contract to the big league roster.

The first part of the season was rough for the 30-year-old. Over his first 14 games, he pitched to an 8.47 ERA, .347 batting average against and 1.037 OPS against with five walks and six homers in 17 innings.

The Nationals designated him for assignment again when they recalled Jordan Weems from Rochester in early June. This time, Machado had the option to elect free agency after clearing waivers. He chose instead to accept an assignment back with Rochester to stay in Washington’s system.

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Meneses blasts Nats to bounceback win in nightcap (updated)

meneses hype

PHILADELPHIA – After an 8-4 loss in the doubleheader opener – in which the Phillies hit four home runs to the Nationals’ two – the plan for Washington in the nightcap was simple: keep the ball in the yard. And if you can continue to hit them out yourself, even better.

Well, wouldn’t you know it, home runs played a big role in the second game.

The Nationals were able to homer to take an early lead, homer to tie the game late and then homer to win 5-4 in the nightcap in front of 40,264 fans at Citizens Bank Park.

"As I always say, this team just keeps battling," manager Davey Martinez said after the second game. "You play hard for 27 outs, anything can happen in this ballpark. You just got to try to get the ball in the air."

Facing a 4-2 deficit thanks to a Bryce Harper two-run home run and Bryson Stott RBI single in the fifth, Joey Meneses responded with a two-run shot of his own in the seventh.

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Game 114 lineups: Nats at Phillies


PHILADELPHIA – Now let’s play two!

The Nationals lost to the Phillies 8-4 in Game 1. Josiah Gray will try to get them back on the winning track, mainly by keeping the ball in the yard after the Phillies hit four home runs in the opener.

Gray is 7-9 with a 3.54 ERA and 1.426 WHIP over his first 22 starts. He has only surrendered 15 homers so far for a 2.8 home run rate, much better than the 38 homers and 5.9 homer rate he allowed last year. 

He is, however, coming off one of his worst starts of the season when he allowed five runs and couldn’t get out of the fourth inning last week against the Brewers. The good news is the right-hander has been good at bouncing back from tough outings this year and he pitches well at Citizens Bank Park. Gray has allowed two runs or less in two of his three career starts in Philly with 23 combined strikeouts.

Ranger Suárez starts the nightcap for the Phillies after he was originally scheduled to start yesterday’s postponed opener. He’s 6-1 with a 3.80 ERA and 1.336 WHIP in 13 appearances (six starts) against the Nats. The left-hander is 14-8 with a 3.56 ERA and 1.325 WHIP in 62 career games (30 starts) at Citizens Bank Park, but he’s 0-2 with a 5.70 ERA and 1.459 WHIP in seven home starts this year.

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Nats lose home run derby in opener (updated)

trevor williams blue

PHILADELPHIA – While yesterday’s rainout helped the Nationals’ exhausted, yet effective bullpen, one still wondered how it would affect the red-hot offense, which averaged just over six runs per game against the Reds over the weekend.

Early in Game 1 of this doubleheader, it seemed to have no effect. But after the Nats jumped out to an early lead thanks to a couple of home runs, the Phillies daunting lineup responded with a homer barrage of their own. And when it was all said and done, this home run derby left the Nationals with an 8-4 loss.

“I was able to get all my work in when I needed to," said Nationals starter Trevor Williams after making his first start in nine days. "As far as the results today, we took a loss. There are some positives to look at through there. You eliminate the longball and it's a different ballgame."

The early lead came off the bats of Keibert Ruiz and the new 1-2 punch atop the Nats lineup.

Ruiz turned on a high fastball from Phillies starter Zack Wheeler and sent it 99 mph out to right field, hitting the scoreboard hanging over the stands 390 feet away. The catcher’s 12th homer of the season gave the Nats a 1-0 lead in the second.

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Edwards, Harvey and Rainey inching closer to returning

edwards fist pump

PHILADELPHIA – While this four-game series between the Nationals and Phillies actually gets underway this afternoon, let’s revisit some injury updates from manager Davey Martinez that he gave prior to yesterday's rainout.

The Nationals have seven relievers currently on the 15-day injured list, with a handful of them making significant strides toward returning soon.

Carl Edwards Jr., on the IL with right shoulder inflammation, is getting close to a rehab assignment with a minor league affiliate after throwing bullpen sessions and working toward a simulated game. If he clears those next two sessions while at the Nats’ facility in West Palm Beach, a rehab assignment would come next.

“Carl Edwards is continuing the throwing program,” Martinez said yesterday. “He'll throw a bullpen again tomorrow. If everything goes well, he's set to throw the sim game and then hopefully that goes well. And if everything goes well with that, we'll probably send him out on a rehab assignment. So progression, very good.”

Hunter Harvey, who is with the team in Philly while rehabbing his right elbow strain, was scheduled to throw another bullpen session today. If the Nats get a good report back from that, he too will head out on a rehab assignment soon.

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Game 113 lineups: Nats at Phillies (Take 2)

thomas and rutherford

PHILADELPHIA – Let’s try this again, shall we?

The heavy rain is gone, but the strong winds that came through Philly last night are still here. Regardless, the weather is much more suitable for not just one, but two baseball games today.

The Nationals are sticking with Monday’s scheduled starter Trevor Williams for Game 1 of the doubleheader. The right-hander should be plenty rested after throwing 89 pitches in just four innings in his last start against the Mets. The only concern may be if there’s any rust as that outing was nine days ago.

Meanwhile, the Phillies are saving Ranger Suárez for the nightcap while Zack Wheeler, their originally scheduled starter for Tuesday, gets bumped up to the first game. Wheeler is 8-5 with a 3.71 ERA and 1.107 WHIP in 22 starts. He has pitched to an impressive 2.36 ERA over his first four starts of the second half, though he has given up 11 runs in 8 ⅔ innings (11.42 ERA) in two starts against the Nats this year.

Where: Citizens Bank Park
Gametime: 4:05 p.m. EDT
Radio: 106.7 The Fan,
Weather: Partly cloudy, 78 degrees, wind 14 mph in from left field

SS CJ Abrams
RF Lane Thomas
DH Joey Meneses
1B Dominic Smith
C Keibert Ruiz
2B Jake Alu
3B Ildemaro Vargas
LF Blake Rutherford
CF Alex Call

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Nats pitching actually benefits from rainout

Joan Adon city connect jersey

PHILADELPHIA – Rainouts and doubleheaders are usually bad news for pitchers. A pregame or warmup routine can be thrown off if the game isn’t called until too close to the first pitch. And 18 innings, with the potential for more, are a lot to cover in a single day.

But for the Nationals, last night’s rainout and today’s doubleheader against the Phillies might actually benefit their pitching staff.

Despite a plethora of injuries, the Nats bullpen has been one of the best in baseball in recent weeks. The Nats currently have seven relievers on the injured list, with the latest casualty being Mason Thompson landing on the 15-day IL with a left knee contusion.

But over their last 16 games, the Nats bullpen has posted a collective 2.39 ERA, the best in the National League and third-best in the majors during that span. Relievers have also posted a 1.139 WHIP and 8.5 strikeouts per nine innings over 52 ⅔ innings since July 21.

“I think we're starting to realize that we need to attack the strike zone and get ahead,” manager Davey Martinez said during his pregame press conference before yesterday’s postponement. “That's been the biggest difference right now for our bullpen guys is that we're really emphasizing getting ahead of hitters, attacking them early and not put yourself in a hole. And these guys have done that, and they've done really well.”

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Nats-Phillies postponed, straight doubleheader Tuesday

Nationals Park tarp

PHILADELPHIA – Like many thought throughout the day, there will be no baseball played at Citizens Bank Park tonight.

The Nationals and Phillies have been postponed due to the approaching storms in the Philadelphia region, which have been going up the entire East Coast this afternoon. The game will be made up tomorrow, Aug. 8, at 4:05 p.m. as part of a single-admission doubleheader. Game 2 will start approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of Game 1. Both games will air on MASN2.

If you are planning to attend tomorrow’s game, all gates will open at 3:05 p.m. Tickets from tonight’s game will not be valid for either game on Tuesday.

Trevor Williams, who was scheduled to start tonight, will start Game 1 tomorrow, with Josiah Gray starting Game 2.

The rotation will actually be OK moving forward despite the upcoming doubleheader. The Nats have off-days on each of the next two Mondays. And with Joan Adon’s successful start on Saturday and Williams’ return from the bereavement list, they have six starters readily available for the near future.

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Game 113 lineups: Nats at Phillies

williams @ NYM

PHILADELPHIA – Hello from Citizens Bank Park for the start of what has turned into a highly anticipated four-game series between the Nationals and Phillies.

The Nats are coming off an impressive three-game sweep in Cincinnati and are now owners of an 11-5 record since July 21. The Phillies just won two of three against the last-place Royals and have won five of their last seven games while tied with the Giants for the first National League wild card spot.

Tonight’s pitching matchup is a rematch of the July 2 game here when the Nationals sealed a series win in Philly: Trevor Willams vs. Ranger Suárez.

Williams, who was officially activated off the bereavement list yesterday, has had a bit of an odd schedule so far this second half. He’s only pitched 17 ⅔ innings over his four starts since the break, limited to just 2 ⅔ in St. Louis because of rain and only lasting four in his last start on June 30 in New York before going on bereavement leave. He did complete five innings while giving up three runs and earning the win here last month.

On the other side, Suárez has been able to eat up a little more innings for the Phillies, going at least five in each of his second-half starts. He only gave up one run over 6 ⅓ innings in his previous start against the Marlins, but the left-hander gave up five in 5 ⅓ when he faced the Nats in July.

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Henry excited to be pitching again, but understands process

Cole Henry Harrisburg red

Cole Henry has had a long road in front of him. Ever since he decided to undergo surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome last August, he has faced an uphill climb to get his career back on track.

All things considered, it’s been so far, so good for the Nationals’ No. 12 prospect, per MLB Pipeline.

Thoracic outlet syndrome surgery has a negative stigma surrounding it in baseball, especially here in Washington as it derailed the careers of Stephen Strasburg and Will Harris.

Granted, those pitchers were older than the now 24-year-old Henry was when they had their surgeries. But any procedure in which a rib and a neck muscle are removed would come with tales of caution.

But Henry is on the path to being a success story having been able to report to spring training just six months after his own surgery and pitching in minor league games three months after that.

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After quiet deadline, Nats fall to Brewers (updated)


The 6 p.m. trade deadline came and went without any more moves from the Nationals. The front offices on South Capitol Street remained quiet after yesterday’s deal that sent Jeimer Candelario to the Cubs for two prospects.

So it was back to business as usual for the boys in the navy blue jerseys and curly W caps.

“Play baseball after that," manager Davey Martinez said after letting out a long sigh when asked about his emotions once the deadline passed. "A couple of our players came in at 6:01 p.m. and asked, 'Am I still here?' I go, 'Yeah, you guys are good. You got traded to the Washington Nationals, so congratulations. Keep playing.'”

Although the fact they didn’t trade away any more players may be a sign that the Nats are closer to contention now than they were when they started this rebuilding project at this time two years ago, unfortunately tonight’s on-field result was similar to many around these parts since the 2019 World Series: A 6-4 loss to the Brewers in front of 19,847 fans who came out to Nats Park on a beautiful August night.

Josiah Gray, who was acquired at the 2021 deadline, started the night off strong, but lost his command as the game went on.

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Nats recall Alu from Rochester, claim Garcia from Marlins (plus minors notes)

Jake Alu cherry

We are just minutes before the trade deadline, and although the Nationals have made a few roster moves this afternoon, none of them have been in the form of a trade like last night’s deal of Jeimer Candelario to the Cubs for two prospects.

This afternoon the Nats announced they recalled infielder Jake Alu from Triple-A Rochester to take Candelario’s spot on the active roster.

“I was excited,” Alu said back in the Nats clubhouse. “I kind of understood the scenario of everything. Like I said, I was playing baseball just one day at a time and kind of just staying focused as much as I could. That's kind of how I went about it.”

This marks Alu’s fourth major league stint this season. He has appeared in five games, going 3-for-14 (.214) with one walk and one stolen base with the Nats.

On the farm, Alu, 26, has been having another strong season. He's tied for first among Nationals farmhands with 22 doubles and ranks in the system in hits (third, 90), runs (fifth, 48), batting average (sixth, .293), OPS (seventh, .777), RBIs (tied for seventh, 43), slugging percentage (eighth, .420) extra-base hits (eighth, 28) and on-base percentage (10th, .357).

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Game 108 lineups: Nats vs. Brewers

Alex Call whites celebration

It’s Trade Deadline Day, which means people all around baseball will be glued to their phones, computers and TVs awaiting the big moves being made throughout the day up until the 6 p.m. deadline.

For the Nationals, that means keeping an eye on names like Lane Thomas and Kyle Finnegan after Jeimer Candelario was traded to the Cubs for two prospects last night. Jake Alu was officially recalled from Triple-A Rochester this afternoon to take Candelario’s roster spot.

Thomas is in tonight’s starting lineup … for now. Keep an eye out for any lineup changes leading up to the deadline.

A guy who we know isn’t going anywhere and was acquired two years ago at the deadline is tonight’s starter, Josiah Gray. The young right-hander is 7-8 with a 3.27 ERA and 1.411 WHIP over his first 21 starts this year. After a shaky start to the second half, Gray has pitched seven innings of one-run ball and six shutout innings in his last two outings.

Freddy Peralta makes the start for the Brewers, who could be busy today as they are in a tight battle with the Reds at the top of the National League Central. Peralta is 6-8 with a 4.46 ERA and 1.248 WHIP in 20 starts this season. In five games (three starts) against the Nats, the right-hander is 2-2 with a 7.29 ERA and 1.381 WHIP.

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More on Nats' crazy comeback against Colorado

CJ Abrams walkoff celebration white

For eight innings of yesterday’s finale, it looked like the Nationals offense had run out of juice to mount another comeback.

But that’s why baseball plays nine innings.

After Lane Thomas’ one-out single in the third inning, the Nats sent the minimum to the plate over the next 5 ⅔ innings. The only baserunner over that stretch was Jeimer Candelario, who was hit by a pitch from Peter Lambert in the sixth and then out on a double play ball by Joey Meneses.

The Nats only had five baserunners after eight innings on three hits, a walk and the hit batter.

“The chasing,” manager Davey Martinez lamented after the game on the Nats’ lack of offense. “We gave away too many at-bats because we were chasing all day today. We play a game like we did last night, come back and play at 12 o'clock. I tell these guys that’s part of growing up right now is that you got to grind today. Today's a grind day for some of our young players and veteran guys. It's not gonna be easy. I know it's hot. But you gotta grind.”

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Abrams walks off Rockies to complete another comeback win (updated)

CJ Abrams runs smiles white walkoff

Despite the long wait and two rain delays, the Nationals built some momentum at the end of last night’s game with Joey Meneses’ dramatic three-run home run in the eighth inning.

After a 10-6 loss to the Rockies on Monday, the Nats were hoping to ride the high from a 6-5 win last night (or more accurately, early this morning) into this afternoon’s finale.

Well, for most of the afternoon, it seemed like it hadn’t. Then all of a sudden, the scrappy Nats came right back for another late rally.

The Nationals came back from another three-run deficit to beat the Rockies 5-4 on CJ Abrams’ walk-off single in the ninth in front of 16,893 fans who attended Nats Park on a blistering hot Camp Day.

"We showed hard as a team," Abrams said after the dramatic win. "It’s never over til it’s over, so keep fighting until it is.”

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Machado selected, Willingham optioned, Robles transferred to 60-day IL

andres machado throws red

The Nationals brought in some bullpen reinforcement ahead of this afternoon’s finale against the Rockies.

Andrés Machado had his contract selected from Triple-A Rochester, Amos Willingham was optioned down to Rochester and Victor Robles was transferred to the 60-day injured list.

After starting the season in Rochester, Machado, 30, posted an 8.47 ERA and 1.765 WHIP in 17 innings over 14 major league appearances this season. He was designated for assignment on June 5 when Jordan Weems was recalled.

The right-hander struggled with his command in his short time with Washington. He gave up 25 hits, six home runs, five walks, a balk and a wild pitch while only striking out 12.

With the Red Wings, he has a 4.08 ERA and 1.186 WHIP in 28 ⅔ innings over 24 outings.

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Game 102 lineups: Nats vs. Rockies

Jake Irvin Whites

Well, after last night’s dramatic, twice-rain-delayed, comeback back win, can the Nationals carry their momentum over to win this series against the Rockies and end this homestand on a positive note?

If they do, it would be their second series win in a row and sixth in their last nine.

Jake Irvin will look to follow up one of the best outings of his young career this afternoon. On Friday, he struck out a career-high nine Giants over 6 ⅔ innings while earning his third win of his rookie year. Manager Davey Martinez was impressed with the adjustments Irvin made throughout that start – throwing his changeup more – so that will be something to keep an eye on today.

The Rockies are starting right-hander Peter Lambert in this finale. The 26-year-old right-hander is 2-1 with a 5.49 ERA and 1.525 WHIP over 16 major league appearances this year (two starts). This will be his third start in a row, combining to pitch only eight scoreless innings with five hits, two walks and five strikeouts.

Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 12:05 p.m. EDT
Radio: 106.7 The Fan,
Weather: Sunny, 86 degrees, wind 4 mph out to left field

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