The Nationals defeated the Diamondbacks, 4-1, in large part to the stellar 6 and 2/3 innings from Ross Detwiler tonight. Detwiler has transitioned from starter to long reliever, and back to starter since he was called up in July. Detwiler’s line, while not dominant, was enough to keep the Diamondbacks at bay. Detwiler scattered six hits (including a solo home run) and a walk while striking out three. If there has been one issue with Detwiler, it’s his penchant to giving up the long ball.
The offense for the Nationals came from the bottom half of the order tonight. Jonny Gomes picked up his 9th RBI since joining the Nationals on July 26th with an RBI single in the second inning. While Jayson Werth hit a three-run home run – his 15th of the season – in the 4th inning off Joe Saunders.
Detwiler kept the first-place Diamondbacks guessing, as Henry Blanco was the man with the solo home run, and also the only player with a multi-hit game. Justin Upton, their star right fielder did get a hit. Blanco’s home run was the only extra base hit allowed by the Nationals on the evening.
The discussion of the night regarding the Nationals – who now moved just 2 games under .500 at 62-64 thanks to winning 6 of their last 9 – may have more to do with the continued rehab of phenom Stephen Strasburg. As Byron Kerr of 106.7 The Fan reported earlier, Strasburg went three innings, surrendering 2 hits and striking out 6.
As for Detwiler, even with Strasburg’s eventual return to the majors, his spot in the rotation could be safe with the team shutting down Jordan Zimmermann. Detwiler has pitched fairly well in his starts, never surrendering more than three runs. Even in his relief appearances, he appeared in five games – always pitching at least 1 and 1/3 innings – and only gave up two earned runs in those five appearances.
Obviously, once rosters expand to 40 players names like Brad Peacock and Tom Milone will pop up and both will look for experience at the major league level.
The Nationals and Diamondbacks continue their four-game series Tuesday at Nats Park with Jordan Zimmermann (8-10, 3.11 ERA) taking the bump against Ian Kennedy (15-4, 3.22 ERA) at 7:05 pm. The game can be heard on 106.7 The Fan.
Davey Johnson Post-Game Press Conference
Ross Detwiler Post-Game Interview
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