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Nationals vs. Cardinals score: Washington punches World Series ticket after completing NLCS sweep



The Washington Nationals are going to the World Series. They took 4 of the National League Championship Series at Nationals Park Tuesday night to sweep the Cardinals with a 7-4 count. This is the first pennant in franchise history.

Why the Nationals

The easy answer for the series as a whole are they just quite a much better team than the cardinals. In this game, it's because of the seven-run first inning. Patrick Corbin on the mound with Sean Doolittle and Daniel Hudson in the bullpen.

Trea Turner singles Adam Eaton doubled and Anthony Rendon came through with a sac fly for the game's first run. Juan Soto would like to follow with RBI double to left and it was 2-0. Cardinals manager Mike Shildt elected to be an ideal walker Howie Kendrick and it worked, but Kolten Wong could not handle Tommy Edman's throw at second attempting to get out of. Victor Robles and Wong then had a miscommunication on a pop up that should have been out, instead of fell and made it 3-0. Yan Gome's with RBI single to make it 5-0 and that for Dakota Hudson.

It's also worth noting that Cardinal's manager Mike Shildt went to Adam Wainwright with runner on base instead of a reliever more used to stranding inherited runners and Wainwright coughed up a two-RBI single. Five runs probably a lot more workable than seven.

Why the Cardinals Lost

Offense had a problem all series and they did not score here until the fourth inning, though they did not mount rallies in the fifth and eighth. Of course, they were loaded with the scores and six men on base.

Still, I've got the first inning pitching and defense costing them the game. There were two inexcusable mishaps in the field with Wong straight-up dropping a ball and then whatsoever happened in Wong and Martinez.

Turning point

Things were going on the Nationals' way, but I'm going with Wong dropping the ball at second and miscommunication in right field in tandem. The Cardinals make those two plays and it's 2-0 through the first inning. That's far from a disaster. Instead, disaster it was.

Hudson getting Matt Carpenter to ground out to the eighth. Carpenter was pinch hitting the go-ahead run. A double ties the game and a grand slam gives the cardinals the lead. It sure felt like something bad going to happen to the nationals, but this is out of everyone's minds.

Highlight of the night

It's gotta be the final out, right? Clincher highlights are outstanding.

Great shot of Ryan Zimmerman there, who has been through all this franchise.

What's next

The Nationals do not play until next Tuesday and that will be Game 1 of the World Series.

  • The Red Sox last year had four days off.
  • The 2005 White Sox had five off They won in a sweep.
  • The 2001 Diamondbacks also had five days off.
  • The 1995 Braves also had six days off and won it all.

There are examples of teams falling flat after a break, too. There is not really any correlation to performance here.

Now, where this helps the Nationals they are getting to the six pitchers they are going to try and ride to a World Series title.

  • Stephen Strasburg led the league with 209 innings pitched this season. He threw three innings in the Wild Card Game, came on a short rest in Game 2 of the NLDS and then started Game 5 of the NLDS. He made seven pitches and threw 117 pitches in Game 3 of the NLCS.
  • Max Scherzer did not have a full season due to injury, but he went into the wild card game, threw 14 high -stress pitches in relief in Game 2, emptied his tank in a Game 4 NLDS start and then threw 101 pitches in seven innings in NLCS Game 2. Again, they'll probably need two starts and possibly some relief to win it all.
  • Patrick Corbin wants to take the ball twice and serve as a LOOGY for a title. He made two starts and appeared in relief five times in the NLDS / NLCS and looked like he ran out of gas late in his Game 4 start.
  • Anibal Sanchez should be fine, but hey, hey, hey, hey! He'll have a lot of rest again.
  • Sean Doolittle has appeared in six of the Nationals' nine games since the Wild Card Game, more than an inning three of the six times. He could sure use a break.
  • Daniel Hudson appeared in six of their 10 playoff games so far. He has 26 incredibly high-stress pitches in Game 4 and did not have his best control.

Do not get sucked into the narrative about this being a rhythm game. The Nationals need this break and it's because of their thin pitching depth.

CBS What is the most recent update of this story with highlights and analysis from the game. If you are unable to view the live updates below, please click here .

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