The team with the best record in baseball took two out of three games at Chase Field over the weekend. The Washington Nationals overmatched the Arizona Diamondbacks in their Friday and Saturday wins before being shut down on Sunday by D-backs rookie Patrick Corbin.
In Friday's 9-1 loss, there was very little the D-backs could do against Nats ace Stephen Strasburg, who gave up one run on only one hit (and four walks) while striking out six batters over six innings. In the end, the D-backs mustered only three hits in the game. Meanwhile, starting pitcher Trevor Cahill went six innings, giving up four runs.
On Saturday, the D-backs lost 6-5 after holding a 4-1 lead through four innings. The Nats scored five runs in the top of the fifth, no thanks to two D-backs errors and a wild pitch. Starting pitcher Wade Miley lasted only 4.1 innings, giving up four earned runs on nine hits. Justin Upton doubled twice and Aaron Hill hit his 14th home run of the year.
The D-backs closed out the three-game series (and homestand) with a 7-4 win. Rookie Patrick Corbin, in his third start since being called up from Triple A Reno, pitched seven strong innings, giving up two runs in the seventh, after the D-backs already had a 7-0 lead. Corbin also struck out seven batters. First baseman Paul Goldschmidt had three hits, three runs batted in, two runs scored, and a stolen base.
The D-backs remained five games behind the first-place San Francisco Giants in the National League West with 47 games left in the regular season. The Nats, meanwhile, left town with a 71-44 record, which is the best in the majors. They own a 4.5-game lead over the Atlanta Braves in the NL East.
The Diamondbacks have a day off today but will return to action on Tuesday against the Cardinals in St. Louis. Ian Kennedy (10-9) will take the mound against Joe Kelly (2-5). First pitch is 5:15. TV: Fox Sports Arizona. Radio: KTAR 620 AM. More info: www.dbacks.com.