Nationals fall 2-0 in home opener against Mets
Washington, DC.- Baseball is finally back in the Nation’s Capital with arguably the most pressure in a few seasons for the Washington Nationals. After missing the playoffs last year with an 82-80 record, it was established early in Spring Training by the Nationals that changes would be made.
In the first inning, the New York Mets wasted no time getting on the board with a Robinson Cano home run off of staff ace, Max Scherzer. It was a battle of the chiefs, as he faced off against reigning N.L. Cy Young Award winner, Jacob deGrom. Both put on quite the show, as bats were quiet on both sides.
The home team gave their fans little to cheer about besides a strong start from Scherzer and a total of three stolen bases by shortstop, Trea Turner. There was no action on offense, which is the obvious cause of starting the season in the loss column. A base-running gaffe by Victor Robles, that could have tied the game 1-1 in the earlier innings, did not help much, but the onus is not on him. It seems the Nationals forgot everything they did this spring, but as it goes, it is only game 1 of 162. There is no pressure just yet for the Nationals.
While the score was still manageable (even with cold bats), a now questionable coaching move was made. In the bottom of the seventh with two outs, manager Dave Martinez allowed Scherzer to bat for himself and told the media after the game why he left Scherzer in the game.
“I was trying to give him a chance to stay in the game and win the game. I knew we had six outs with our top guys coming up to hit.” This move is now being ridiculed in the media, and with an off day tomorrow many are questioning why he didn’t immediately resort to his fresh bullpen.”Dave Martinez- Washington Nationals manager
Scherzer expended 100+ pitches, and once Martinez finally called on new arms, they could not keep the score where it stood. A string of hits put together by the Mets at the expense of Scherzer, Justin Miller, and Kyle Barraclough gave them their dagger in a 2-0 final. With the last at-bat, Washington pinch-hitter, Matt Adams, was unable to keep his bat back and was rung up for the final strike via a check swing.
The Nationals lost the game 2-0, and despite the theatrics of Opening Day, there proved to be very little to cheer about. Their next game will be at 1:05 PM EST against the Mets at Nationals Park.