Scherzer and rookie Pearson in pitching duel (Nats win 4-0 in 10)

Top Blue Jays prospect Nate Pearson went toe-to-toe with three-time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer Wednesday night at Nats Park in Toronto’s “home” opener.

Scherzer Bears Down Blue Sidebar.jpgIn the first three innings, Pearson allowed one hit and two walks but no runs, with two strikeouts. His fastball ranging from 96 to 98 mph.

In the first inning, Adam Eaton walked with one out and stole second base. He got to third with two outs but was stranded there on an Eric Thames’ line drive out to left field.

In the third inning, Trea Turner singled with two outs and moved to second when Eaton walked again. But Asdrúbal Cabrera grounded out to second to end the rally attempt.

Scherzer allowed a single to Rowdy Tellez in the second and a double off the wall by Derek Fisher in the third. But the Blue Jays were unable to get a run-scoring hit to plate a run in the first three frames. Scherzer has four strikeouts and one walk. He has hovered around 95 to 96 mph.

After three innings, the Nats and the Blue Jays are scoreless.

Update: Pearson tossed five scoreless innings, allowing two hits and two walks while striking out five. He fired 75 pitches, 48 for strikes. Scherzer has also not allowed a run, striking out nine batters through six.

After six innings, the Nats and the Blue Jays remain scoreless.

Update II: The Toronto bullpen retired the Nats’ last eight batters.

The Blue Jays were unable to score with men on the corners and one out in the bottom of the eighth. Teoscar Hernández grounded into a 6-4-3 double play off Daniel Hudson to end the frame. Hudson pitched a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth with three punchouts to send the game into extra innings, including striking out Vladimir Guerrero Jr. swinging.

No score through nine at Nats Park.

Update III: The Nats started the top of the tenth with Emilio Bonifácio at second base, replacing Starlin Castro. Facing Shun Yamaguchi, Carter Kieboom and Andrew Stevenson drew walks to load the bases. Victor Robles and Trea Turner struck out.

With two outs, Adam Eaton’s infield single scored Bonifácio for the first run of the game. On the play, the ball was deflected by Yamaguchi to second baseman Cavan Biggio. His tag of the bag to try get to Stevenson was late. A video review confirmed that Stevenson was safe. The Nats led 1-0.

Asdrúbal Cabrera then drove a three-run triple down the right field line to clear the bases.

In the bottom of the tenth, with Guerrero on second base, Tanner Rainey struck out Rowdy Tellez on a called third strike. Tellez was ejected from the game for arguing the call, as was Blue Jays coach Dante Bichette. Danny Jansen struck out.

Brandon Drury struck out to, presumably, end the game, but was safe at first base on a wild pitch when Kurt Suzuki’s throw pulled Thames off the bag. Guerrero moved to third base. The call was upheld on video review.

Santiago Espinal flew out to center field to end the game.

Final score: The Nats 4, the Blue Jays 0, in 10 innings.

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