A three-run 8th by Houston erased a 5-2 Washington lead as the Nationals and Astros played to 5-5 tie last night in West Palm Beach.
Max Scherzer struck out five and let in two runs (one earned) on three hits and a walk over three innings. After four straight goose eggs, Aaron Barrett blew the save with the aforementioned three runs on three hits and a walk in the 8th. Both pitchers threw two wild pitches.
Four notable minor-leaguers came off the bench:
- Luis Garcia subbed for Wilmer Wifo at shortstop and singled twice in as many at-bats
- Drew Ward followed Ryan Zimmerman at first base and singled once and struck out once
- Tres Barrera replaced Kurt Suzki at catcher but was hitless in two trips to the plate
- Yadiel Hernandez took over for Juan Soto in left field and was 1-for-2 with a run scored
The Nats remain at [no free advertising] ballpark this afternoon for a 1:05 p.m. game against the Rays. Stephen Strasburg is slated to make his first spring start. The game will be televised locally on MASN and broadcast on 1580 AM; both can be seen/heard on MLB.tv and MLB Audio with the Nats broadcast.
A couple of items that would have otherwise been a “Morning Reading” post…
• Baseball America passes along word that new pickoff rules may be coming to MiLB in 2020 after MLB has apparently deemed its experiment in the Atlantic League a success. This, the authors posit, could be related to the adoption of “Trackman” automated balls-and-strikes to be used in the Florida State League this season.
• The F-Nats are going back to the future by returning to over-the-air broadcasts on 1230 WFVA – both home and away. With more and more teams opting to broadcast via the internet only, this is a laudable move.