Yoshitomo Tsutsugo to be Posted by Bay Stars

October 7th, 2019

The Yokohama DeNA Bay Stars have announced they will post outfielder Yoshitomo Tsutsugo to give him an opportunity to play major league baseball. For his ten year career Yoshitomo has hit .285 with 205 homeruns. His best season was in 2016 when he hit .322 with 44 homeruns and 110 RBIs. All of those numbers have been career highs.

Defense is not a big part of his game, nor are stolen bases. For his career he has stolen just 5 bases and been caught 4 times. That is an average of one stolen base attempt per season. The last two years he has not attempted to steal a base. Last year he seemed prone to the strike out, whiffing a career high 141 times, which resulted in a .272 batting average. Myworld would compare him as a lessor version of Juan Soto, but he needs to work on getting back to making more solid contact.

He will be a solid leftfielder/designated hitter for any team that puts in a bid.

Dodgers Maul Nationals Pen

October 7th, 2019

It has been a problem for the Nationals all season and it became a problem for them yesterday. After five superb innings from starter Anibal Sanchez, the bullpen coughed up nine runs in four innings in a 10-4 loss to the Dodgers. Starter Patrick Corbin started the bullpen meltdown, failing to get past the sixth. David Freese got the critical two out pinch hit single to extend the inningleading the charge for the six hitters after him to get on base for a seven run sixth.

It was a great start for the Nationals. Hyun-Jin Ryu, who rarely walks anyone, issued a one out walk to Adam Eaton. With two outs Juan Soto buried a ball into the right field bleachers and the Nationals had a 2-0 lead. Ryu settled down after that, shutting the Nationals down for the next four innings.

Anibal Sanchez was magnificent. He got into trouble in the first inning, fighting with his control to find the strike zone. A single sandwiched between two walks loaded the bases with two out. He got A.J. Pollock to swing and miss at a change to end the threat. From that point he went on to strike out five straight hitters using his slow stuff to keep the Dodgers hitters off balance. In the fifth Cody Bellinger blasted an 0-2 fastball deep into the right field bleachers. Dave Martinez pinch hit for him in the bottom of the fifth.

Patrick Corbin came on to pitch the sixth. The plan was probably for him to pitch two to three innings to turn it to Doolittle for the 8th and Hudson for the ninth. While Corbin pitched well and was the victim of bad luck, that is what sometimes wins and loses playoff games.

Cody Bellinger led off the inning with a single to right. Corbin struck out the next two hitters. David Freese pinch hit for Gavin Lux, the same David Freese that was a playoff hero for the Cardinals back in 2011. The Nationals played David to pull with the second baseman playing him up the middle. Freese hit what should have been a routine grounder to second, but no one was in that spot and it trickled into right field for a single. It got nasty after that.

Corbin got ahead of Russell Martin 0-2. Martin did not chase two pitches off the plate. The 2-2 slider he blasted into the left centerfield gap for a double, scoring two runs. Chris Taylor walked. The Dodgers had Kike Hernandez pinch hit for Joc Pederson and with another left handed hitter on deck Martinez chose to stay with Corbin. Kiki drove a 1-2 hanging slider into the left centerfield gap to score two more runs. The Nationals chose to walk Max Muncy intentionally and bring in a right hander to face Justin Turner.

In strides the confident but still inexperienced Wander Suero to face the veteran Justin Turner. The count goes full. Turner sees a pitch he likes and mashes it over the left field bullpen to complete the seven run sixth.

The Nationals still had a chance. Joe Kelly, who has trouble finding the plate came in to pitch for the Dodgers. He walked two and gave up a single to Howie Kendrick to load the bases. A wild pitch scored one run. Another walk loaded the bases. That was it for Kelly. He was replaced by Julio Urias without retiring a hitter. Julio got pinch hitter Asdrubal Cabrera to fly out to right deep enough to score Juan Soto. Howie made a baserunning blunder hesitating on his tag to third and getting caught in a run down when Freese cut the ball off and threw to third. That killed the rally and any attempt at a comeback from the Nationals.

The final scoring came off Hunter Struckland, who gave up a two run pop to Russell Martin in the ninth. Strickland has now pitched 13 playoff innings in his career and given up 9 homeruns. Up until that point 7 of his 8 homeruns had been solo jobs so his 7.62 ERA is not too bad considering all the gopher balls he has given up.

Game Notes: Medal of honor winner David Bellavia threw out the first pitch. He is the only living Iraqi war veteran to earn the medal of honor…Juan Soto has two stances when he bats. One with less than two strikes when his left foot points inward. The second stance when he has two strikes and his left foot is planted on the ground facing the pitcher…Fernando Rodney gave up a double and walked two in the seventh inning. He was lucky that Max Muncy swung at ball four and flew out to center, otherwise the score could have been worse…The Nationals have their two aces, Scherzer and Strasburg going for them in the final two games. If the Nationals had won the game on Sunday myworld would not have been surprised to see Strasburg come into the game on Monday as the closer. Now I would be surprised if he pitches on Monday. Leave it to Max for seven innings…Odds are not good for the Nationals. Teams with 2-1 advantages in five game series with the 2-2-1 format have gone on to advance 71 percent of the time…All seven runs the Dodgers scored in the sixth inning came after two were out and all the hits that drove in the runs came with two strikes. So the Nationals were just one strike away many times from either getting out of the inning, or making the inning less explosive…David Freese finished the game 3 for 3, continuing his clutch performances in playoff games. In 67 playoff games he has an OPS of .918.

Dodgers Maul Nationals Pen

October 7th, 2019

It has been a problem for the Nationals all season and it became a problem for them yesterday. After five superb innings from starter Anibal Sanchez, the bullpen coughed up nine runs in four innings in a 10-4 loss to the Dodgers. Starter Patrick Corbin started the bullpen meltdown, failing to get past the sixth. David Freese got the critical two out pinch hit single to extend the inningleading the charge for the six hitters after him to get on base for a seven run sixth.

It was a great start for the Nationals. Hyun-Jin Ryu, who rarely walks anyone, issued a one out walk to Adam Eaton. With two outs Juan Soto buried a ball into the right field bleachers and the Nationals had a 2-0 lead. Ryu settled down after that, shutting the Nationals down for the next four innings.

Anibal Sanchez was magnificent. He got into trouble in the first inning, fighting with his control to find the strike zone. A single sandwiched between two walks loaded the bases with two out. He got A.J. Pollock to swing and miss at a change to end the threat. From that point he went on to strike out five straight hitters using his slow stuff to keep the Dodgers hitters off balance. In the fifth Cody Bellinger blasted an 0-2 fastball deep into the right field bleachers. Dave Martinez pinch hit for him in the bottom of the fifth.

Patrick Corbin came on to pitch the sixth. The plan was probably for him to pitch two to three innings to turn it to Doolittle for the 8th and Hudson for the ninth. While Corbin pitched well and was the victim of bad luck, that is what sometimes wins and loses playoff games.

Cody Bellinger led off the inning with a single to right. Corbin struck out the next two hitters. David Freese pinch hit for Gavin Lux, the same David Freese that was a playoff hero for the Cardinals back in 2011. The Nationals played David to pull with the second baseman playing him up the middle. Freese hit what should have been a routine grounder to second, but no one was in that spot and it trickled into right field for a single. It got nasty after that.

Corbin got ahead of Russell Martin 0-2. Martin did not chase two pitches off the plate. The 2-2 slider he blasted into the left centerfield gap for a double, scoring two runs. Chris Taylor walked. The Dodgers had Kike Hernandez pinch hit for Joc Pederson and with another left handed hitter on deck Martinez chose to stay with Corbin. Kiki drove a 1-2 hanging slider into the left centerfield gap to score two more runs. The Nationals chose to walk Max Muncy intentionally and bring in a right hander to face Justin Turner.

In strides the confident but still inexperienced Wander Suero to face the veteran Justin Turner. The count goes full. Turner sees a pitch he likes and mashes it over the left field bullpen to complete the seven run sixth.

The Nationals still had a chance. Joe Kelly, who has trouble finding the plate came in to pitch for the Dodgers. He walked two and gave up a single to Howie Kendrick to load the bases. A wild pitch scored one run. Another walk loaded the bases. That was it for Kelly. He was replaced by Julio Urias without retiring a hitter. Julio got pinch hitter Asdrubal Cabrera to fly out to right deep enough to score Juan Soto. Howie made a baserunning blunder hesitating on his tag to third and getting caught in a run down when Freese cut the ball off and threw to third. That killed the rally and any attempt at a comeback from the Nationals.

The final scoring came off Hunter Struckland, who gave up a two run pop to Russell Martin in the ninth. Strickland has now pitched 13 playoff innings in his career and given up 9 homeruns. Up until that point 7 of his 8 homeruns had been solo jobs so his 7.62 ERA is not too bad considering all the gopher balls he has given up.

Game Notes: Medal of honor winner David Bellavia threw out the first pitch. He is the only living Iraqi war veteran to earn the medal of honor…Juan Soto has two stances when he bats. One with less than two strikes when his left foot points inward. The second stance when he has two strikes and his left foot is planted on the ground facing the pitcher…Fernando Rodney gave up a double and walked two in the seventh inning. He was lucky that Max Muncy swung at ball four and flew out to center, otherwise the score could have been worse…The Nationals have their two aces, Scherzer and Strasburg going for them in the final two games. If the Nationals had won the game on Sunday myworld would not have been surprised to see Strasburg come into the game on Monday as the closer. Now I would be surprised if he pitches on Monday. Leave it to Max for seven innings…Odds are not good for the Nationals. Teams with 2-1 advantages in five game series with the 2-2-1 format have gone on to advance 71 percent of the time…All seven runs the Dodgers scored in the sixth inning came after two were out and all the hits that drove in the runs came with two strikes. So the Nationals were just one strike away many times from either getting out of the inning, or making the inning less explosive…David Freese finished the game 3 for 3, continuing his clutch performances in playoff games. In 67 playoff games he has an OPS of .918.

Premier 12 Roster Korea

October 6th, 2019

The Korean roster is filled with players from the KBO. No major leaguers or minor leaguers are on the roster. They do have some ex-major leaguers in Byung-Ho Park, who just hit a walk off homerun in the opening game of the playoff series between the LG Twins and the Kiwoom Heroes. The homerun was the only run scored in the 1-0 win. They also have Jae-Gyun Hwang, who attempted to play for the Giants and Hyun-So Kim, who played for the Orioles and Phillies.

There are some younger players to keep an eye on such as outfielders Baek-Ho Kang and Jung-Hoo Lee, who would be top 100 prospects in the major leagues and could play outfield now for major league teams weak in that area. Kang was compared to Shohei Ohtani because of his ability to pitch and throw a 95 mile per hour fastball. He has given up pitching to focus on hitting. Lee is the son of a legendary Korean player who focuses more on speed and defense in the outfield rather than power.

Korea is the defending gold medalist from the last Olympics so it would be disappointing for them not to qualify for the 2020 games. Only six teams will qualify and two (Israel and Japan) have already been selected.

Pitchers

Jong-Hoon Park (SK Wyverns), Jae-Hoon Ha (SK Wyverns), Young-Ha Lee (Doosan Bears), Sang-Woo Jo (Kiwoom Heroes), Hyun-Hee Han (Kiwoom Heroes), Kyung-chan Moon (Kia Tigers), Woo-Seok Ko (LG Twins), Jong-Hyun Won (NC Dinos), LHers - Kwang-Hyun Kim (SK Wyverns), Duk-Joo Ham (Doosan Bears), Hyeon-Jong Yang (Kia Tigers), Woo-Chan Cha (LG Twins), Chang-Mo Koo (NC Dinos)

Catchers

Eui-Ji Yang (NC Dinos), Se-Hyuk Park (Doosan Bears)

Infielders

Byung-Ho Park (Kiwoom Heroes), Sang-Soo Kim (Samsung Lions), Min-Woo Park (NC Dinos), Choi Jung (SK Wyverns), Kyung-Min Hur (Doosan Bears), Jae-Gyun Hwang (KT Wizards), Ha-Sung Kim (Kiwoom Heroes)

Outfielders

Keon-Woo Park (Doosan Bears), Byung-Heon Min (Lotte Giants), Jae-Hwan Kim (Doosan Bears), Jung-Hoo Lee (Kiwoom Heroes), Hyun-So Kim (LG Twins), Baek-Ho Kang (KT Wizards)

As expected the first place Doosan Bears have the most players on the roster with six. The third place Kiwoom Heroes have five players and the second place Sk Wyverns and the fifth place NC Dinos have four each. The next to last place Hanwha Eagles have no players on the roster while the last place Lotte Giants have one.

Taiwan Roster for Premier 12

October 6th, 2019

Taiwan has some ex-major leaguers on their roster, or players who played in the minor leagues. C.C. Lee could be their closer. Taiwan will be hosting one of the three pool plays. Most of the players are playing in the China Professional Baseball League (CPBL). A few are playing in Japan or in the minor leagues in the United States. There is one player considered an amateur on the roster.

Pitchers

Chen Yu-Hsun (Lamiga Monkeys), Wang Yao-Lin (LaMiga Monkeys), Huang Tzu-Peng (LaMiga Monkeys), Chen Hung-Wen (Fubon Guardians), C.C. Lee (Chinatrust Brothers), Liao Yi-Chung (Chinatrust Brothers), Hu Chih-Wei (Chicago Cubs), Chiang Shao-Ching (Cleveland Indians), Lin Kai-Wei (Arizona Diamondbacks), Chen Kuan-Yu (Chibba Lotte Marines), Sung Chia-Hao (Rakuten Golden Eagles), Chang Yi (Orix Buffaloes), Wu Sheng-Feng (Taiwan Cooperative Bank)

Catchers

Lin Hung-Yu (LaMiga Monkeys), Kao Yu-Chieh (Chinatrust Brothers), Lin Yu-Le (Uni Lions)

Infielders

Chen Chun-Hsiu (LaMiga Monkeys), Kuo Yen-Wen (LaMiga Monkeys), Lin Li (LaMiga Monkeys), Wang Wei-Chen (Chnatrust Brothers), Wang Seng-Wei (Chinatrust Brothers), Yueh Tung-Hua (Chinatrust Brothers),

Outfielders

Chu Yu-Hsien (LaMiga Monkeys), Lin Che-Hsuan (Fubon Guardians), Hu Chin-Lung (Fubon Guardians), Chan Tzu-Hsien (Chinatrust Brothers), Su Chih-Chieh (Uni Lions), Wang Po-Jung (Nippon Ham Fighters

Japanese Roster - Premier 12

October 4th, 2019

One of the biggest international tournaments is happening in November. The 12 best countries will be competing for two qualifying spots in the Olympics to be played in Tokyo next year. Two countries have already qualified. Japan, which is hosting the Olympics and Israel, which won the European/Africa qualifier, upsetting Netherlands and Italy, which usually represent Europe in international competition are the only two countries with Olympic spots.

The 12 teams will be playing pool play in three countries, Mexico, Korea and Taiwan. The top two teams from each pool will then travel to Tokyo to play in a Super Round pool play in Tokyo. The top two countries from that tournament will qualify for the Olympics.

The Japanese roster is filled with NPB players. If these players were put together to compete against major league teams they would be a playoff contender. One of the best pitchers in baseball, Kodai Senga is on the roster. His fastball hits triple digits. They have a shortstop in Hayato Sakamoto, who hit 40 homeruns in the NPB last year. One of the reasons these players have not been posted to the major leagues is the teams they play for, the Softbank Hawks and Yomiuri Giants do not post players. They have to wait for free agency, which means they have to wait until after they have been playing for eight years.

Missing from the roster are major league players, and at least three NPB All Stars. Tsutsugo Yoshitomo a power hitting second baseman/outfielder who has expressed his interest in playing major league baseball is absent from the roster, as are his 29 homeruns and the 44 dingers he hit in 2016. Also not on the roster is 30/30 (homers/stolen bases) player Yuki Yanagita, who has been struggling with injuries these past two years. In 2019 he was limited to 38 games. On the pitching front Takahiro Norimoto is not on the roster. He was out most of this year because of injuries, limited to just 12 starts. From 2014 to 2017 Takahiro had 200 plus strikeouts.

Interesting that no player from the Hanshin Tigers or the Lotte Marines made the roster. The Yomiuri Giants and the Softbank Hawks had the most players on the team with five each.

Pitchers

Takayuki Kishi (Rakuten Eagles), Taisuke Yamaoka (Orix Buffaloes), Yuki Matsui (Rakuten Eagles), Shun Yamaguchi (Yomiuri Tokyo Giants), Yasuaki Yamazaki (Yokohama DeNA Bay Stars), Shota Imanga (Yokohama DeNA Bay Stars), Yudai Ono (Chunichi Dragons), Kodai Senga (Fukuoka Softbank Hawks), Rei Takahashi (Fukuoka Softbank Hawks), Yoshinobu Yamamoto (Orix Buffaloes), Kohei Morihara (Rakuten Eagles), Yuta Nakagawa (Yomiuri Tokyo Giants), Kazuto Taguchi (Yomiuri Tokyo Giants)

Catchers

Seiji Kobayashi (Yomiuri Tokyo Giants), Tsubasa Aizawa (Hiroshima Toyo Carp), Takuya Kai (Fukuoka Softbank Hawks)

Infielders

Tetsuto Yamada (Tokyo Yakult Swallows), Sosuke Genda (Seibu Lions), Eitoto Asamura (Rakuten Golden Eagles), Ryosuke Kikuchi (Hiroshima Toyo Carp), Shuta Tonosaki (Seibu Lions), Hayato Sakamoto (Yomiuri Tokyo Giants), Nobuhiro Matsuda (Fukuoka Softbank Hawks)

Outfielders

Kensuke Kondo (Nippon Ham Fighters), Ukyo Shuto (Fukuoka Softbank Hawks), Masataka Yoshida (Orix Buffaloes), Seiya Suzuki (Hiroshima Toyo Carp), Shogo Akiyama (Seibu Lions)

Monclova Mexican Champions

October 3rd, 2019

The Monclova Acereros won a seven game series against the Tijuana Toros to advance to the Mexican League championship from the Northern Division. Yucatan Leones swept the first place Mexico Diablos Rojos to advance to the championship from the Southern Division. Yucatan finished third in the Southern Division. Monclava finished in a tie for first with Tijuana in the Northern Division.

In the finals it went seven games. The two teams traded victories until they were tied at 3-3. Yucatan jumped out to early 2-0 and 5-2 leads fueled by a two run homer from Alex Liddi in the first inning and a three run homer from Sebastion Vallle in the fourth. Monclova’s first two runs were scored on a two run homer by Noah Perio in the third.

Erick Aybar tied the game in the fifth with a three run homer. He also came up in the sixth and his RBI double gave the Acereros a 6-5 lead. In the eighth Alex Mejia added two insurance runs with a double. A last run in the ninth on a squeeze bunt by Eric Young Jr. put Monclava ahead 9-5.

Four different relievers shutout the Yucatan Leones for the final 2.2 innings. Carlos Bustamante worked the last 1.2 innings to pick up the save. Al Alburquerque retired two hitters, one in the seventh and one in the eighth.

KBO Wild Card Games to Begin

October 2nd, 2019

The LG Twins will play the NC Dinos in the first of several wild card games. The Twins are the higher seed having finished in fourth place and only need to win or tie to advance in the playoffs. The NC Dinos need to win two games to advance. Both games will be played at the home park of the LG Twins, in Jamsil Stadium in Seoul. The two teams finished their season series at 8-8.

The winner of this series will play the Kiwoom Heroes in a best of five series. Another five game series will be played against the second place team the SK Wyverns and the winner of the Kiwoom Heroes and the winner of the first wild card game. The championship match will be a best of seven series against the regular season champs the Doosan Bears.

The Bears and Wyverns had identical records (88-55-1) but the Bears were awarded first place because of their 9-7 season series won loss record. The Wyverns are the defending champions. The Bears have been bridesmaids for two consecutive seasons.

Brothers Win Second Half in CPBL

October 2nd, 2019

The Chinatrust Brothers won the second half of the China Professional Baseball League and will likely face the LaMiga Monkeys, who won the first half. Last year the Monkeys won both halves and played the winner of a playoff. The Monkeys have won the last two CPBL championships, beating the Brothers in 2017. They have recently been purchased by Rakuten and will have a new name in 2020. The season still as a week left and there is a chance the Fubon Guardians could win the overall best record.

The Brothers last won a championship in 2010 when they were called the Brother Elephants. They would like to give a nice send off to 41 year old Peng Cheng-min, who played 19 seasons for the Brothers. He finished his CPBL career as the second player to reach 2000 hits.

A Wild Nats Win in a Wild Card Game

October 2nd, 2019

In the Nationals recent playoff history they have had trouble advancing past the first round. Winning a wild card game in a one game playoff may not count as advancing, but the Nationals will take any win they can get. They got two clutch hits from two of their clutch players, Juan Soto and Ryan Zimmerman in the 8th inning to beat the Milwaukee Brewers 4-3. Many strange events occurred in that inning, but myworld will detail them below.

Max Scherzer got the start over Stephen Strasburg in this game. That was one of the big questions in D.C., who do you start in a must win wild card game? There was no consensus among the Nat fans. The Brewers chose to start Brandon Woodruff. He started 22 games in 2019. This is his third season and while he has lots of talent, he is not considered an ace in the mold of Scherzer or Strasburg.

The game did not start well for Max. He appeared too amped up, his fastball getting to the plate at 97-99 miles per hour. Normally he is at 95-97. Many may think faster is better, but Max could not find the plate. He walked leadoff hitter Trent Grisham on a 3-2 count. Yasmani Grandal then took his first pitch and sent a line drive into the left field bullpen. Nats fans were stunned.

In the second inning Max got behind the first hitter Eric Thames 1-0. Eric drove the next pitch from Max high into right center and just reaching the bleachers to give the Brewers a 3-0 lead. In his second at bat in the fourth inning Eric would send a high fly to left field that just fell short of being a homerun. Juan Soto lept for the ball at the fence, but it fell behind him and Eric cruised into second with a double. There were a lot of discussions in the stands about starting Strasburg instead.

Max only worked five innings before being pinch hit for Brian Dozier in the bottom of the fifth. Stephen Strasburg came on in relief for the first time since he was the closer his freshman year at San Diego State. He pitched three brilliant shutout innings, dropping his playoff ERA to 0.41. If the game had turned differently there would have been some serious Monday morning quarterbacking about who should have started the first game of the wild card.

Brandon Woodruff pitched well for the Brewers. Myworld did not think he threw as hard as he did, but his fastball was hitting 99-100 miles per hour. He was only supposed to be used as an opener but he pitched so well the Brewers extended him for four innings. Trea Turner tagged him for a solo shot in the third inning, a line drive that found its way into the left field bullpen. He gave up only one other hit in his four innings of work.

The Brewers went with little used Brent Suter and Drew Pomeranz to shut down the Nationals the next three innings. For the eighth Josh Hader was called on to get a two out save. He struck out leadoff hitter Victor Robles. The Nats called back Ryan Zimmerman from the on deck circle and instead went with Michael Taylor. It was the second time Ryan was called back from the on deck circle as a pinch hitter. Myworld questioned the move thinking this was a strikeout waiting to happen.

For the Brewers it was the start of a chaotic eighth inning. On a 3-2 pitch a Hader fastball came inside and hit Taylor. Or did it hit the bat? I did not see where the ball landed after Taylor was hit but the Brewers threw to first and then appealed the ruling saying the ball hit the bat before it hit Taylor. Video replays were not conclusive and the call stood. Trea Turner then struck out and it was two down.

Dave Martinez finally chose to use his ace to bat for Adam Eaton, trying to take advantage of the lefty/righty split. Hader had trouble throwing strikes, running the count to 2-1. Zimmerman was jammed on the next pitch and his bat split as he plunked a pitch into center field. Lorenzo Cain was playing him deep and the ball fell in front of him. Lorenzo was questionable for the start of this game because of a sprained ankle. Was his ankle bothering him as he charged the ball? Andrew Stevenson pinch ran for Zimmerman. The bat died a happy death.

Anthony Rendon worked the count to 3-2 and walked to load the bases. Up strode the young but confident Juan Soto. Hader is a killer against lefthanders. They are hitting just .143 against him. Soto was not deterred. He lined a 1-1 pitch into right field. Pinch runner Stevenson was being waved home. It appeared a close play at the plate was in the future, but the ball skipped past the glove of right fielder Trent Grisham as he tried to charge the ball to make the throw. Now Rendon was being waived home and he scored easily for the go ahead run. Soto was thrown out at third, stopping before he reached the base and being tagged in the run down. Normally Christian Yelich plays right field, but a fractured knee cap ended his season in September. Would he have made the play?

The Nationals went with Daniel Hudson to close out the game. The same Daniel Hudson that had been released by the Los Angeles Angels during spring training this year and traded by the Toronto Blue Jays to the Nationals for a song. He had also pitched in 40 games for the Dodgers in 2018, but they chose not to resign him. He gave up a one out single to Lorenzo Cain, but retired the next two batters, the last on a deep drive to center by Ben Gamel that Victor Robles caught short of the warning track. The celebrations began, something the Nationals had not done in the post season. Now it’s on to L.A. where the Nationals will face the Dodgers. Daniel Hudson is probably looking forward to it.

Game Notes: On the video board before the game the Nationals had clips of Morgan’s Minute, as Morgan, a young girl interviewed various players and people in the Nationals organization. She did a good job and has a future in the broadcasting industry. Myworld enjoyed the interviews…Aaron Barrett threw out the first pitch for the Nationals. He made his first appearance with the Nationals this year after Tommy John and a fractured elbow took him four years to recover, then had an emotional scene in the dugout weeping over his first appearance since his struggles. Good luck to him next year…There appeared to be a power outage somewhere in the Nationals stadium, with fire alarms going off in the distance and the stadium without sound for a half inning. The racing Presidents ran in silence and then did a dance with no music from the loud speakers…This was Juan Soto’s first playoff appearance. Perhaps his clutch hit will change the narrative of the Nationals performing so poorly during playoff games. He was 0 for 3 with two whiffs before his clutch hit against a tough pitcher…It was an emotional night for the fans in the stands. There was a lot of hugging among strangers and high fives as people were leaving the stadium. In Panama it is tradition that when the home team wins beer is thrown in the air in celebration. Of course, beer in Panama is only $1 per cup while at Nats stadium they charge about $9. There were reports of a lot of beer raining down on the stadium after the win. The 50-50 winner also came home $27,000 richer. Perhaps he or she will buy the next beers after a Nationals victory…The Nationals had gone 8-0 in their last home stand. Losing a home playoff game after that 8-0 finish would have been tough to deal with.