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Nationals Take Care Of Business Against Tigers

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The Nats won 5-4 in extras on Tuesday and 7-5 on Wednesday, but lost 7-2 on Thursday, bringing their overall record to 32-36 in a parity of other National League teams with around the same record.

A big highlight of this series in Detroit was the Nationals hitting six sacrifice flies, which is the most the ballclub has ever hit in a three-game series in its history.

In Tuesday’s victory, Washington took a 3-0 lead until the bottom of the fifth when a triple from Tigers outfielder Riley Greene resulted in three runs as well as a throwing error that allowed Greene to score to give Detroit a 4-3 lead.

Nevertheless, Ildemaro Vargas hit his first of three sac flies to tie it at 4-4 in the eighth, while Lane Thomas hit his second sacrifice fly of the game to give the Nationals a 5-4 lead in the top of the 10th. The first three Washington runs came on Jesse Winker getting walked with the bases loaded, C.J. Abrams hitting an RBI triple, and Thomas getting his first sac fly.

Mitchell Parker got the start on the mound and looked solid at first until that four-run at-bat with the bases loaded, as he gave up more than three runs for the first time in 11 MLB starts. Regardless, Kyle Finnegan finished the job in the bottom of the 10th and was credited with the win.

In Wednesday’s victory, Washington overcame an early 1-0 deficit by scoring five unanswered runs by the top of the fifth, while a couple of insurance runs sealed it in the top of the ninth.

Abrams went off in this game with two hits and two RBIs, including a 404-foot homer and a ground rule double that drove in Jacob Young, while Keibert Ruiz hit a sacrifice fly, Jesse Winker hit an RBI single and then scored on a throwing error, Luis Garcia Jr. hit an infield single that drove in Thomas, and Joey Meneses singled to send home Eddie Rosario.

Jake Irvin once again looked great as he went six innings and struck out five Tigers batters on 98 pitches for his fifth win, while Kyle Finnegan recorded his 19th save of the season.

Finally, in Thursday’s loss, Vargas hit two more sacrifice flies to make it six for the Nationals in this series, but with the score tied at 2-2 in the bottom of the fifth, Detroit went on to score five consecutive runs for their lone win.

Patrick Corbin was surprisingly decent as he went 5.1 innings with four strikeouts and only one run allowed, but the bullpen was unable to keep it together as Derek Law and Robert Garcia gave up six combined runs in 1 1/3 innings of relief.

Next up, Washington returns home for a divisional series with the last-place Miami Marlins for three games on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at Nationals Park.

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