Despite a ninth inning comeback from the Washington Nationals, the Milwaukee Brewers would rally to score in the bottom of the ninth against the Nats "closer of the future," Drew Storen to win 4-3.
The bases-clearing walk off double came from Ryan Braun as the slugging outfielder raked one to the fence, a shot which left-fielder Josh Willingham didn't even bat an eye at. As the ball sailed over his head, he knew before the rest of us, the Nationals would rack up yet another road loss. The club is now 8-28 on the road since May 13.
It was an ugly road to an ugly finish Saturday night as Washington had to use four pitchers just to get through the first five innings.
J.D. Martin was knocked out in the third due to a back injury after allowing three hits, three walks, and one earned in 2.1 innings pitched. Newly promoted Colin Balester didn't fair much better, allowing a homer in two innings of work, and lost all composure when he (probably accidently) beaned Rickie Weeks. Doug Slaten and Miguel Batista both got work in as well until Riggleman handed the game into the hands of Clippard in the seventh.
The Nats scored runs in the fifth, sixth, and ninth to eventually tie the game up but it would be for nothing as Drew Storen allowed two hits, a walk and a run while only making one out in the 9th.
Entering the 9th last night, the Nats outlook was grim. The Brewers possessed an 83.3 win expectancy and had just brought on their closer, John Axford. With the heart of the order up for Washington, the club rallied with back-to-back singles from Ryan Zimmerman and Josh Willingham, and a sacrifice bunt-attempt turned base hit by Nyjer Morgan.
With the bases loaded and no outs the Nationals had shredded the Brewers win expectancy from 83.3% to 35.8%. Mathematically, the Nats were in position to win despite still being down 2-3. Adam Dunn pinch hit and drove in Zimmerman on a shallow sac-fly, advancing both runners.
However with only one out and runners on second and third, neither Wil Nieves nor Alberto Gonzalez could find a way to bring either run home. I guess Win Expectancy doesn't work when you are looking at a pair of guys barely keeping afloat in the majors.