Home Washington Nationals conclude regular season with another W

Washington Nationals conclude regular season with another W


washington nationalsThe Washington Nationals, entering the final week of the 2019 season, still had work to do to clinch a playoff bid, and eight games against two teams with playoff aspirations.

Then the brooms came out. Twice.

The Nats (93-69) completed another sweep, this time finshing off Cleveland, winning 8-2 on Sunday.

Washington finished the 2019 season on an eight-game winning streak. The Nationals will face Milwaukee (89-73) in the one-game NL wild-card playoff on Tuesday in Nats Park.

It was quite the unexpected turn for a team that famously started 19-31, had only been above .500 for three days through June 29, then finished the season on a 74-38 tear, including wins in 10 of their last 11.

Gerardo Parra, the waiver pickup who became an emotional sparkplug for the team as a pinch-hitter and utilityman, had another big game on Sunday, going 2-for-2 with three RBI, finishing the regular season with eight hits in his last 12 at-bats, with two homers and 11 RBIs over the stretch.

Joe Ross (4-4, 5.48 ERA) got the win on Sunday, giving up a run on four hits in six innings, striking out eight and walking two.

Ross went 4-1 with a 2.75 ERA in eight starts from Aug. 2 on for Washington, at a time when the Nats were strained a bit pitching-wise with the injury to ace Max Scherzer throwing things off for a period of several weeks.

It will be Scherzer (11-7, 2.92 ERA) who gets the ball on Tuesday against the Brewers, who haven’t yet announced their starter for the wild-card game.

Scherzer hasn’t exactly been lights-out since his return from a second stint on the IL on Aug. 22, going 2-2 with a 4.74 ERA and 1.16 WHIP in seven starts, touched up for 20 earned runs in 38 innings of work, though his power-control numbers – 54 strikeouts, eight walks – have been very Max-like.

Story by Chris Graham



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