Potomac Nationals break skid with win over Dash
Matt Grace did not allow an earned run in six innings of action as the Potomac Nationals snapped their three-game losing streak with a 6-4 win over the Winston-Salem Dash. The victory keeps the Nationals within 1.5 games of first place in the Carolina League’s Northern Division.
Grace (7-11) earned his first win in five starts this season against Winston-Salem. He yielded two unearned runs on just three hits in his six innings with a season-high seven strikeouts.
Winston-Salem threatened in the top of the ninth inning by loading the bases with one out, but Rob Wort struck out the final two batters to secure the win for the Nationals.
After being shutout last night, the Nationals scored their first runs of the series in the third inning. With Erick Fernandez and Francisco Soriano on the base paths, Adrian Sanchez lined a two-out, two-run triple to give the Nationals a 2-0 lead.
The Nationals would double that advantage in the fourth inning with two more runs. J.P. Ramirez singled with one out and advanced to second on an error by starter Chris Bassitt. Ramirez scored on an RBI single by Blake Kelso to tack on another run. Two batters later, Soriano singled home Kelso to put the Nationals in front 4-0.
Bassitt (3-3), making just his sixth start of the year, went the first four innings. He was saddled with the loss allowing four runs on seven hits.
Winston-Salem got two runs back in the top of the fifth courtesy of an error by the Nationals. The Dash had Cyle Hankerd at third and Juan Silverio at second base with two outs and Keenyn Walker at the plate. Walker hit what looked to be an inning-ending groundout but Stephen King dropped the throw from Kelso allowing Hankerd and Silverio to score to make it 4-2.
A defensive mistake by the Dash gifted a run to the Nationals in the bottom of the sixth. Kelso doubled with two outs and scored on a throwing error by Silverio to increase the lead to 5-2.
Potomac added another insurance run in the bottom of the seventh inning. Anthony Rendon picked up his first hit at Pfitzner Stadium with a triple to deep right field and scored on a groundout by Kevin Keyes for a 6-2 P-Nat lead.
Dan Black brought the Dash within two runs in the eighth inning with a two-run home run, his 14th of the season, to cut the deficit to 6-4.