Today marked the half way point for Spring Training, as the Nationals took on the New York Mets in Vierra in a game that was neither televised or radioed. Ross Detwiler took the mound for the Nationals, facing former Boston Red Sox pitcher and Japanese superstar, Daisuke Matsuzaka. Unfortunately, the Mets went home with the victory, beating the Nationals 7-5 in thrilling fashion. Here are the good, bad, and ugly for today’s game.
From innings 1-7, every National pitcher had a stellar performance, only allowing five base runners, and striking out six. Ross Detwiler started today off with three very strong innings. In those three innings, Detwiler got All-Stars David Wright and Curtis Granderson to strike out. In the fourth inning, Detwiler gave up a one out single to David Wright, who scored two batters later on a Josh Satin double. That would be Ross Detwiler’s last batter, as Christian Garcia would come in to relieve him. After allowing a walk to Travis d’Arnaud, Garcia was able toend the Mets threat by getting Andrew Brown to fly out to Denard Span. Garcia would go on to pitch the fifth inning, retiring the side in order. Then, came in Rafael Soriano, who in 1.2 innings of work this Spring, had given up 7 runs. Luckily for the the Nationals, Soriano was on top of his game today, facing only three batters in one inning of work, including a strike out of David Wright. Tyler Clippard came in after Soriano in the seventh, and got the Mets to go 1-2-3.
Adam “Wheels” LaRoche did what he does best in today’s game, go 3-3 with three singles and a stolen base. In fairness, his stolen base did come off of Matsuzaka, who is known for his extremely long pitching motion.
Coming into Spring Training as a nobody, Brock Peterson really has made a name for himself so far this spring, hitting .389 with 7 RBIs in 18 at bats so far this Spring. Today, Peterson made a 3 run deficit disappear with one swing of the bat, hitting a long home run off Jacob deGrom in the bottom of the eight to tie the game 5-5. Peterson sure is giving Tyler Moore a run for his money so far this Spring.
Outside of Brock Peterson and Adam LaRoche, the Nationals offense was basically non-existent. Not including LaRoche and Peterson, the Nationals went a combined 2-27 with 10 strikeouts. Especially bad was Jeff Kobernus, who went 0-3 with 2 strikeouts in today’s game.
Sometimes in baseball, just giving up one single can get you a loss. This was the case for pitcher Robert Gilliam, who came in in the eight inning with the bases loaded. After throwing a wild pitch to score Anthony Seratelli, Gilliam got Josh Satin to hit a sac fly to minimize the damage. Then, in the ninth, Gilliam remained in the game and got the first two outs very quickly. After Omar Quintanilla singled, Matt Williams decided that that was enough for Gilliam, as he took him out in favor of Brian Dupra. Unfortunately for Robert Gilliam, Dupra was unable to get that last out before it was too late.
Brian Dupra came into major league camp today to help fill out the Nationals roster as they took on the Mets. In a key situation in the ninth, Dupra was called on to pitch with a runner on first with two outs in a 5-5 game. Dupra proceeded to give up a single to Mets second baseman Anthony Seratelli who advanced to third on an error by Eury Perez. Then, after a Brandon Allen walk, Kirk Nieuwenhuis hit a single that scored Quintanilla from third and Seratelli from second, giving the Mets a 7-5 lead that they would not relinquish.
Manny Delcarmen came into today’s game already with an outside shot to make the team, and his efforts today did not help him. After striking out the first batter he faced, Delcarmen went on to walk the next to batters to set up Anthony Seratelli to tie the game at 2 with a single to score Matt den Dekker. After giving up a single to load the bases, Delcarmen walked Kirk Nieuwehuis to score the runner from third. Delcarmen was pulled after that, but was still on the hook for two more runs that scored that inning.
The Nationals take on the Tigers tomorrow at 1:05 at Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland. Taylor Jordan takes on TBA for the Tigers. The game can be heard on the MLB At Bat app through the Tigers broadcast.