Tonight, Max Scherzer did exactly what the Nationals are paying him an obscene amount of money to do. For seven scoreless innings he made the Padres offense look foolish, holding them to four hits and two walks while striking out eleven. While we've seen that kind of work from Andrew Cashner before, this was not his game. The Nats touched him for four runs on nine hits and two walks. Some of that was just bad luck; around half of those were seeing eye grounders that slipped through for singles.
There were some small highlights tonight. In the top of the third, after Yunel Escobar and Bryce Harper led off the inning with a double and a walk, Cory Spangenberg made a spectacular diving stop to start a 4-6-3 double play. He followed that up with another diving stop to end the inning. Austin Hedges had a pretty great day on defense, too. In his first home start, the rookie catcher caught his first two runners. He nailed Michael Taylor when he tried to take third as part of a double steal in the second, and he caught Ian Desmond taking second in the seventh. It's only a matter of time before runner learn that you don't steal on Austin Hedges.
Ian Kennedy will try to keep the team from slipping below .500 when he takes the mound at 1:10 PM tomorrow.
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