Nationals Top Diamondbacks, Locastro to Miss at Least 10 Days

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Diamondbacks 6, Nationals 2

The Washington Nationals rode seeing-eye hits to a big fourth inning. Later, they added insurance runs in the seventh and eighth to defeat the visiting Arizona Diamondbacks, 6-2, Saturday afternoon. Diamondbacks outfielder Tim Locastro saw his stolen base streak end, injuring his left pinky in the process.

Catcher Yan Gomes opened the scoring for the Nationals in the second with a solo home run off Luke Weaver. Diamondbacks right fielder Kole Calhoun tied the game in the third with a solo homer off Nationals starter Erick Fedde. But Calhoun’s homer could have been a two-run shot. It came shortly after Tim Locastro — who had just singled, running his hitting streak to nine games — was thrown out trying to steal for the first time in his major league career. On the play, he had an open dislocation of his pinky, requiring four stitches. “My pinky got caught, I believe, on (Starlin Castro’s) knee or the base, and I dislocated it,” Locastro said after the game.

“Balls Got Through”

While Weaver was not as sharp as he was in his last outing, he was still doing fairly well at first. The bottom of the fourth was not kind to him, however. Castro hit a rocket toward second baseman Josh VanMeter. It ate VanMeter up, squeaking through and rolling to the wall for a leadoff double. Andrew Stevenson followed with a clean RBI double to right, retaking the lead for the Nationals. Next, Gomes hit a smash toward first that somehow found a way past a diving Wyatt Mathisen, extending the lead to 3-1. Four batters later, with the bases loaded and one out, Juan Soto hit a deep fly near the warning track in left that brought Gomes in for a 4-1 lead.

“I didn’t think it was a rough inning,” Weaver said after the game. “Balls got through.” He continued, “It wasn’t necessarily anybody’s fault — it was just one of those days where you feel like you can’t quite catch a break. In no way (am I playing) the victim, but that’s the way baseball goes sometimes.”

A solo home run by Diamondbacks third baseman Eduardo Escobar cut the deficit to 4-2 in the sixth. The Nationals made the score 5-2 in the seventh on a leadoff double by Kyle Schwarber and an RBI single by Castro. They scored their sixth and final run in the bottom of the eighth when Ryan Zimmerman hit a pinch-homer.

Looking Ahead

“Things started off a little bit slowly for both teams,” said Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo. “Kole’s big home run put us right back in the game. But we didn’t do some things defensively…that cost us 90 feet and cost us some runs.” The quiet bats of the Diamondbacks did not help, either. “We couldn’t really get anything going offensively,” he continued. “We had some opportunities — had some runners on — but couldn’t get the big hit. That translates to only a couple of runs.”

Weaver (1-1) took the loss, while Fedde (1-1) earned his first win of the season. Sunday afternoon, Madison Bumgarner (0-2, 11.20 ERA) will try to turn it around for the Diamondbacks (5-10). He will face Stephen Strasburg (0-1, 6.30 ERA). First pitch will be at 10:05 am Arizona Time.

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Players/managers mentioned:
Tim Locastro, Yan Gomes, Luke Weaver, Kole Calhoun, Erick Fedde, Starlin Castro, Josh VanMeter, Wyatt Mathisen, Juan Soto, Eduardo Escobar, Kyle Schwarber, Ryan Zimmerman, Torey Lovullo, Madison Bumgarner, Stephen Strasburg