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Home / Sports / Nationals 5, Phillies 4: Defense and Bullpen conspire to ruin Aaron Nola's youngest gem

Nationals 5, Phillies 4: Defense and Bullpen conspire to ruin Aaron Nola's youngest gem



BOX SCORE

Aaron Nola has overtaken three-time Cy Young winner Max Scherzer for the third time in a week, but the Phillies have overtaken a threefold advantage in a dreadful 5-4 loss to the Washington Nationals on Tuesday night. [NolawentseveninningsanddispelledfourhitsOneofthetworunshegavewasundeserved

Nola allowed two runs in the seventh, one that comes on a mistake. The Phils led, 3-2, to open the top of Ninth. Tommy Hunter left the inning with Bryce Harper. Then Pat Neshek allowed Anthony Rendon to play a two-headed homer, and from there it went downhill.

Nola's ERA is 2.10, second best in the Netherlands at Jacob deGrom of Mets, who made his start in Chicago on Tuesday night with a 1

.71 ERA. Scherzer has a 2.22 ERA. One of these three will win the NL Cy Young Award.

The Race
The Phillies have lost eight of 10 and 14 of their last 21. They went in the night behind Atlanta in first place for 3½ games in the NL East. The Braves beat Tampa Bay, 9-5, to increase their lead to 4½ games.

A Waste Crew
In the last week, the Phils have suffered four losses in which they have blown a considerable head start. They have a pair of 4-1 lead, a 5-0 lead and a 3-0 lead.

More Nola
Nola struck eight. He got Harper three times, in a 0-2 change, a full count change and a 1-2 curveball. Last week in Washington, Nola blew two 95-mph fastballs from Harper with the game on the line in the eighth inning of a 2-0 win. Nola has all weapons

Walks kill
Hunter left Harper on six pitches to lead the ninth. Rendon hit a 1: 2 slider against Neshek to take the Nats into the lead.

Grind Down
For most of the night, Gabe Kapler was a happy man. His team tricked the thugs, saw a lot of pitches and came early in the Nissen Bullpen. That's the kind of ball that Kapler likes.

Scherzer had gone after five innings and 99 games. Nick Williams had an at-bat in the fourth inning, which certainly impressed Kapler. He saw 11 pitches – and missed seven of them – before he saw a fastball in the middle for a third blow. Maybe Williams was just tired. But also Scherzer. He allowed a two-run homer against Jorge Alfaro the next inning when the Phillies came up 3-0. Odubel Herrera gave the team with a homer in the fourth 1-0 lead.

Another mistake
Nola took a 3-0 lead in the seventh inning and gave up two runs. One came as first base Carlos Santana made a throwing error. It was the 101st mistake of the season of the Phillies, the second highest in the majors. Defense remains a topic for the club.

And another mistake
After the 4-3 in the ninth, the Nats another run on a costly throwing mistake by catcher Alfaro.

This mistake was the 102nd of the Phils. St. Louis entered the day with 102 errors, most in the majors. The Phils could finally win this race.

The fifth run of the Nats was huge because it allowed them to stop the Phils after they prevailed in the knockout round with a run-to-back double Williams and Wilson Ramos. The game ended when pinch-runner Vince Velasquez went from second baseman on a fly ball to Center Field and was called into a double play. It was a surreal ending – and another mistake for a team that is slowly imploding under the weight of its own mistakes.

Another Small Crowd
Although the Phillies have been having problems lately, they are still in a pennant and there is excitement. However, many fans have not bought and it has shown the last two nights at the turnstiles.

The paid attendance for the game on Tuesday night was only 21,083. That's 23,000 less than the capacity and not what you'd expect for a showdown between two of the game's best pitchers.

The paid attendance on Monday night was only 21,261 and the actual number in the house was 15,000, according to one person in

Whatever the current number was, Tuesday night, it's worth noting that the fans, the came out, lively, supportive and loud – at least until the Phillies imploded in the late innings. Then the crowd let out their frustration and it was hard to argue with them.

Joey Bats Arrives
The Phillies acquired thug Jose Bautista in a waiver of trade with the Mets earlier in the day and he was in uniform for the game.

Bautista will fill a specific role for the club. He will come off the bench as a pinch hitter, mostly against left-handers, and occasionally start in left-hander in the right field.

Bautista has had 55 part-time hits with the Braves and Mets this season. He beat 11 homers.

Bautista was a hit in the seventh inning.

See you next
The Phils and the Nationals close the series on Wednesday night with Jake Arrieta (9-9, 3.37) against left-leaning Gio Gonzalez (7-11, 4.35).

More about the Phillies

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