WASHINGTON (AP) — Stephen Strasburg tossed seven masterful innings to win his seventh consecutive start, leading the Washington Nationals to an 11-4 rout of the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday.
Brian Dozier and Juan Soto homered, while Anthony Rendon continued to swing a hot bat with three hits and four RBIs that helped the Nationals (56-49) prevent a three-game sweep by the top team in the majors.
Corey Seager hit a three-run homer with two outs in the ninth off Nationals reliever Michael Blazek to help the Dodgers avoid their largest loss of the season.
Adam Eaton and Washington manager Dave Martinez were ejected in the first inning for arguing a called strike, which meant they weren’t around to get a firsthand look at the latest gem authored by Strasburg (14-4).
The 31-year-old right-hander took over the major league lead in wins after striking out nine, walking none and limiting a potent Dodgers lineup to one run and two hits. He threw 67 of 100 pitches for strikes.
Strasburg was perfect through 4 1/3 innings before Los Angeles got to him. A.J. Pollock doubled into the left field corner and scored when Matt Beaty doubled down the right field line.
The Nationals quickly answered in the bottom half against All-Star Walker Buehler (9-2).
Gerardo Parra reached on an infield hit before Dozier hit his 15th home run a few rows over the tall wall in right-center.
Victor Robles, pressed into service on a scheduled day off after Eaton was ejected, extended the fifth-inning rally with a triple, which was the first of his three hits. Robles then scored on a single by Rendon, who has a hit in 16 of his last 18 games.
Strasburg helped his own cause in a four-run sixth by poking a bases-loaded single into right field to score Howie Kendrick. Strasburg has driven in six runs since July 18 after posting just one RBI up to that point this season.
Buehler lost for the first time since May 18. He allowed seven runs (four earned) and eight hits over 5 1/3 innings on his 25th birthday.
Soto launched his 18th homer as part of a four-run ninth for the Nationals.
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Eaton was ejected for the third time in his career and first since 2016. He thought he had drawn a one-out walk and was a third of the way down the first base line after flipping his bat before he was summoned back into the box by plate umpire Jeremie Rehak.
Eaton struck out swinging on the next pitch and, after saying something to Rehak on his way back to the dugout, was tossed. Eaton then got into the face of the umpire, which prompted Martinez to race out of the dugout, shove his outfielder aside and plead his case.
Martinez was ejected for the third time this season and fourth in his career, but not before making a demonstrative display on his way off the field.
Dodgers: Valuable utilityman Kiké Hernández (left wrist) will likely be placed on the injured list Monday, according to manager Dave Roberts. “He’s still in pain. It’s getting better, but the IL is probably inevitable,” Roberts said.
Nationals: RHP Max Scherzer felt “ornery” and “a little frustrated” after an MRI revealed a mid-back strain Friday, according to Martinez. Scherzer’s status for his next scheduled start Tuesday against Atlanta remained unclear. “I want to make sure that he is 100 percent,” Martinez said. “We need Max to be 100 percent to get us through the next few months. He’s got to prove to us that he is that.”
Dodgers: RHP Kenta Maeda (7-7, 3.81 ERA) looks for his first win since May 31 when the Dodgers open a three-game series Monday night in Colorado.
Nationals: LHP Patrick Corbin (8-5, 3.25) seeks his sixth win in 11 starts at Nationals Park this season against the NL East-leading Atlanta Braves on Monday night. Corbin ranks second in the majors with a 1.68 ERA at home.
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