"I just don't think I had great command of my off-speed today. And you go with what you have."--Ross Detwiler, July 8, 2009.
THE RESULT: On get-away day yesterday, the Washington Nationals played a lot like they just wanted to get out of dodge. They managed just five hits off Colorado starter Jorge De La Rosa, committed three more errors, and fell 9-4, completing a three-game sweep in the "Mile High" city by the home-standing Rockies.
There were two big blows that really did the Nats in yesterday.
The first was a bases loaded triple by Ryan Spilborghs that ended Ross Detwiler's afternoon in the fifth inning. Detwiler allowed consecutive singles to Todd Helton and Garrett Atkins, before walking Troy Tulowitzki on four pitches. Spilborghs then laced one into the left field corner that eluded Josh Willingham.
Detwiler had his third straight forgettable outing. He lasted just four innings, giving up six earned runs on eight hits and three walks. He struck out only three Rockies.
The second big shot was Tulowitzki's two-run home run off Ron Villone in the sixth inning.
Washington was able to plate three in the top of the seventh, courtesy of a bases-loaded single by Anderson Hernandez, that narrowly escaped the glove of second baseman Clint Barmes, and Wil Nieves' two-out sacrifice fly that followed.
THE TAKEAWAY: Ugh. The Nats really just didn't look like they had it in them yesterday. They started the game with two straight hits, but Nyjer Morgan was gunned down trying to advance to third. They then didn't reach base again until Nieves' double to start the sixth — where he was promptly stranded.
Add two errors by Adam Dunn at first base — the second of which led to a run — and Nieves dropping a foul pop up...well, you get the point.
Not to be outdone, Julian Tavarez pitched the seventh and eighth and gave up another run in each of the frames.
Good thing all this was accomplished while most Nats fans were at work.
THE GOOD: Wow. Where to start? Andy Hernandez had the two RBIs. Nyjer Morgan was 3-for-4. Nieves got the runner home from third with less than two outs.
THE BAD: Ross Detwiler. Three straight bad outings. Maybe if Sunday's outing in Houston is bad, they might re-think things a little bit.
THE UGLY: Villone and Tavarez. The long-toothed ones in the bullpen have run out of gas. In July.
NEXT GAME: Today from Houston at 8:05 p.m. EDT. John Lannan (6-5, 3.45) faces Russ (not Ramon) Ortiz (3-4, 4.11). Before the regularly scheduled game, the teams will complete the suspended game from earlier this season that started at Nationals Park at 7:05 EDT.