I repeat, the Nationals are NOT screwing around!

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I repeat, the Nationals are NOT screwing around!

Kurt Suzuki touches them all after sending a solo shot into left center field during Game 2 of the World Series.

Kurt Suzuki touches them all after sending a solo shot into left center field during Game 2 of the World Series.

Kurt Suzuki touches them all after sending a solo shot into left center field during Game 2 of the World Series.

Kurt Suzuki touches them all after sending a solo shot into left center field during Game 2 of the World Series.

Alexander Thomas, Staff Writer

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The Washington Nationals defeat the Houston Astros again 12-3 in Game 2 of the World Series. Last night’s pitching matchup was between Justin Verlander and Stephen Strasburg, with Strasburg getting a convincing win over Verlander. Unlike in Game 1 the Astros did not out hit the Nats (14-9), nor did the commit as many errors (2-1) as the Nats. Things started off bad when Verlander gave up a 2 RBI double to Houston native Anthony Rendon (he attended both Lamar High School and Rice University) in the top of the 1st. Houston did pull level thanks in part to a 2 run blast by Alex Bregman. That ball was sent all the way to the Crawford Boxes in left field, causing MMP to go into an uproar. Both pitchers then tossed no run innings in both the 2nd and 3rd innings.

That same pitching dominance in 4th to 6th innings meant no runs were scored. Both Verlander and Strasburg were wheeling and dealing for their respective teams. All that was to change at the start of the 7th…

On Verlander’s second pitch of the 7th inning, Kurt Suzuki mashed a solo homer way over to left center field. With that homer run, Washington brought the score to 3-2. Unfortunately for Houston, they were still hungry for more runs. JV walked the next batter after Suzuki, causing AJ Hinch (manager of the Astros) to pull him for Ryan Pressley. Pressley subsequently walked the first batter he faced, causing a another mound visit to calm his nerves. It seemed to work because the next two batters were swiftly put away with. Juan Soto, the hero of Game 1, was intentionally walked. Chaos ensued when Howie Kendricks hit an RBI ground ball single, marking the score 4-2 and keeping the bases filled. Asdrubal Cabrera then ripped a 2 RBI line drive single to center field, widening the gap 6-2. As Pressely was pitching to Ryan Zimmerman, he threw a wild pitch that moved the runners to 2nd and 3rd base. Zimmerman immediately responded with a 2 RBI ground ball single, score 8-2. Alex Bregman could’ve thrown him out at 1st but instead threw an errant throw wide left of Yuli Gurriel (Astros 1st baseman). Manger Hinch again came to the mound to replace Pressley with Josh James. James forced Suzuki to groundout, ending the top of the 7th. Fernando Rodney replaced Strasburg in the bottom of the 7th, but made quick work of the Astros. Going into the 8th, James was somewhat dealing. He technically struck out the first batter Victor Robles, but the payoff pitch passed by Martin Maldonado (catcher for the Houston Astros) causing Robles to be safe at 1st base. James did strike out the next batter he faced. After the strikeout, Adam Eaton stepped up to the plate. On the first pitch thrown to him, Eaton blasted a 2 run shot to right field officially breaking the game wide open for the Nationals 10-2. At this point many home fans were leaving the ballpark having to bear witness to the Astros losing in horrible fashion. James didn’t fair too well after the home run, striking out Rendon but then giving up a walk and a single before being replaced by Hector Rondon. Rondon inherited a jam he made worse by letting Cabreta hit an RBI line drive single to center field putting the Nats up 11-2. Ryan Zimmerman then grounded out, ending the inning. Tanner Rainey replaced Rodney and gave no chance forthe Astros to put any runs on the board. Hinch again went to the bullpen in the top of the 9th and chose Chris Devenski to stop any more damage from Washington. Devenski forced Suzuki to groundout but gave up a knockout punch solo homer to Michael Taylor. It landed in center field. Devenski took care of the next two batters, effectively ending the Nats night on offense. Now it was the Astros turn. Javy Guerra subbed in for Tanner Rainey with the task of killing the Astos offensively. He did just that, only giving up a solo homer to Maldonado that landed in left center field. By far, this was the worst performance ever seen. I mean, even the announcers were shocked. Game 3 in DC is must win game now.

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