Quick Links

Strasburg likely gets 4-5 more starts

Strasburg likely gets 4-5 more starts

Though the Nationals have no set date for Stephen Strasburg's shutdown, manager Davey Johnson did offer up the most-concrete clue yet today, suggesting the club will need another pitcher to make two or three starts in Strasburg's place come late-September.

"I talked a little bit about it with general manager Mike Rizzo," Johnson said prior to the Nationals' series finale against the Braves. "We kind of worked it out, and I think it came out with off-days we would need another starter for, I think, two starts. I think it was two starts, maybe three. I thought it was two."

What exactly does that mean? It seems to suggest Strasburg will make either four or five more starts this season. He's slated to pitch Tuesday in Miami, then lines up to start Sept. 2 against the Cardinals, Sept. 7 against the Marlins and Sept. 12 in New York.

It would then be a question of whether the Nationals will let the right-hander make one final start at home, likely Sept. 19 against the Dodgers.

If he averages six innings per start, Strasburg would reach 175 after that outing against Los Angeles. Club officials have privately said he won't be allowed to surpass 180 innings this season.

"I don't think the innings number is cut in stone," Johnson said. "The science is not that exact. There's a little leeway there."

Whenever the Nationals decide the time is right to shut down Strasburg, they will give the 24-year-old advance notice. Johnson said he'll likely inform the pitcher in the days leading up to his final start.

The Nationals plan to use left-hander John Lannan (who has spent the majority of the season at Class AAA Syracuse) as Strasburg's replacement for the remainder of the regular season. His starts would likely fall on Sept. 24 against the Brewers and Sept. 29 in St. Louis.

Quick Links

Anthony Rendon homers in third straight game, but Nationals fall to Mariners in series finale

Anthony Rendon homers in third straight game, but Nationals fall to Mariners in series finale

WASHINGTON -- Nelson Cruz greeted reliever Jacob Turner with a go-ahead, three-run homer in the sixth inning, and the Seattle Mariners beat the Washington Nationals 4-2 Thursday to stop a five-game losing streak.

Gio Gonzalez took a 2-0 lead into the sixth, when Jean Segura singled leading off and Guillermo Heredia took a called third strike. That prompted Seattle manager Scott Servais to complain from the dugout, which led to his ejection by plate umpire Adam Hamari.

Robinson Cano singled, and Washington manager Dusty Baker brought in Turner (2-3), despite Cruz having just one hit in 15 at-bats against Gonzalez. Cruz drove a belt-high slider over the fence in left-center for his 12th homer this season and a 3-2 lead. Cruz leads the AL with 40 RBIs.

Cano added an RBI single off Turner in the seventh. Seattle scored multiple runs for the first time since May 18.

Ariel Miranda (4-2) allowed two runs, three hits and three walks in five innings. Edwin Diaz, Seattle's sixth pitcher, threw a one-hit ninth that completed a six-hitter. Diaz got his first save since May 9 and has eight in 10 chances overall.

Gonzalez gave up two runs, three hits and four walks in 5 1/3 innings, striking out eight.

Washington's Anthony Rendon homered in the fifth, his ninth this season and fourth in the three-game series. Jayson Werth added an RBI single later in the inning.

FAMILY FIRST

Baker will be leaving the Nationals for their weekend series against San Diego Padres to attend his son Darren's high school graduation in Northern California and will rejoin the team Monday in San Francisco.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Mariners: LHP James Paxton (forearm strain) could return to the rotation in the first or second game of a homestand that starts Wednesday, Servais said. ... 1B Danny Valencia was in the lineup for a second straight day after sitting out three games with a wrist injury.

Nationals: Baker may continue to use an eight-man bullpen. Baker said the decision depends the progress of INF Stephen Drew's rehabilitation from a hamstring strain. Drew is at extended spring training.

UP NEXT

Mariners: RHP Yovani Gallardo is 2-2 with a 5.28 ERA against Boston, where Seattle begins a three-game set on Friday.

Nationals: RHP Max Scherzer (4-3, 3.02) has allowed two runs or fewer in his last three starts against San Diego, which opens a three-game series in Washington on Friday.

Quick Links

Nats beat Mariners behind Joe Ross' career day in return from minors

Nats beat Mariners behind Joe Ross' career day in return from minors

WASHINGTON -- Anthony Rendon homered twice and drove in five runs, Joe Ross returned from the minors to allow one run over a career high-tying eight innings, and the Washington Nationals routed the Seattle Mariners 10-1 on Tuesday night.

Bryce Harper added his 14th homer and Jayson Werth hit his seventh off Chris Bergman (1-2), who allowed all of the Nationals' runs and 14 of their 15 hits.

Rendon doubled before his second homer -- and seventh of the season -- completed an eight-run fourth inning. Ryan Zimmerman also had three hits.

Mike Zunino homered off Ross (2-0) in his return from his own minor league stint. Robinson Cano was hitless in his first game back from the disabled list following a thigh injury as Seattle dropped its fourth straight.

Ross showed no signs of the late April struggles that ended with a demotion to Triple-A Syracuse. He yielded five hits and a walk while striking out six, and retired 12 straight batters after a leadoff single to begin the game.

By the time Seattle finally put multiple runners aboard, Washington had already opened a 10-0 lead.

Rendon's second-inning shot around the left field foul pole made it 2-0.

Then Werth, Harper and Rendon all connected in the fourth, helping the Nationals score seven of their eight runs in the inning with two outs.

MORE NATIONALS: WATCH: Werth, Harper go back-to-back, Rendon hits 2 HRs in Nationals win