Cruz homers and Franco produces 3 in Nationals win

Josh Bell, Yadiel Hernandez and Nelson Cruz all went deep, Maikel Franco drove in three runs and the Washington Nationals snapped a three-game losing streak with a 7-3 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday night.

"Two things for me that stood out was that we got the ball up and the guys were on time throughout the game."manager Davey Martinez said of the offense.

Josiah Gray (4-2) won his second straight start, allowing three runs on five hits in 5 1/3 innings. The right-hander, who was acquired from the Los Angeles Dodgers last season in the trade deal for Max Scherzer and Trea Turner, also struck out three.

Jared Walsh and Brandon Marsh homered for the Angels, who had their three-game winning streak snapped. Walsh has five home runs on the season, including three in the last four games.

Gray has won four of his last five starts and was effective except for allowing the home runs in the fourth. The Angels went after Gray early in the first two innings, getting contact early in the count but failing to generate hits.

"I thought that would be your approach. That’s probably going to be the focus for a lot of the teams, is they’re going to try to catch me early."Gray said. "I’m trying to work to continue attacking the attacking zone. If they swing often, let’s hope it’s a good launch. And if not, then we have to work on some things".

After being eliminated 3-0 on Friday, Washington’s offense re-entered the swing of things. They are hitting .330 in eight games of their current road trip with nine home runs and 54 runs scored.

The Nationals lead the majors with six runs per game on the road (90 runs in 15 games) and a .300 batting average on the road.

Read Also:  PlayStation Portal update: Discover all the news about the portable PS5

"We were hitting balls hard (early in the season), we were just hitting them on the ground"Martinez said. "Now the timing is getting a lot better, and they’re getting ready to hit every pitch. If we get the ball in the zone, these guys are going to hit the ball hard. Everything is coming to fruition. We just have to move on".

Bell and Hernandez hit home runs off Michael Lorenzen (3-2). Bell came to a full count with two outs in the first inning and entered the rock pile at deep center for his fourth of the season. Hernandez cleared the wall in right center to lead the second inning.

The Nationals extended their lead to 4-0 in the fourth when Franco hit a loaded base hit to left field to drive in Bell and Hernandez.

The Angels closed within one run with three in the middle of the inning. Walsh hit a solo shot to right to put Los Angeles on the board. After Matt Stassi drew a walk, Marsh drove Gray’s fastball over the wall into deep center.

Washington responded with Cruz’s two-run shot to left when Elvis Peguero’s sinker stayed high in the strike zone. He is Cruz’s 452nd career home run, which is third among active players and ties him with Carl Yastrzemski for 39th on the all-time list.

Franco made it a four-run lead with an RBI double in the sixth.

"We crawl back into it. I thought things were going to change the way we’ve been playing, but it just didn’t happen."Angels manager Joe Maddon said.

Recent Articles

Related News

Leave A Reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here