Nats win 8-2; Brewers’ Peralta exits with shoulder tightness

May 22, 2022, 2:32 AM | Updated: May 23, 2022, 11:56 am
Washington Nationals' Cesar Hernandez bunts for an RBI single during the fourth inning of a basebal...

Washington Nationals' Cesar Hernandez bunts for an RBI single during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers Sunday, May 22, 2022, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

(AP Photo/Morry Gash)

              Washington Nationals' Cesar Hernandez bunts for an RBI single during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers Sunday, May 22, 2022, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
            
              Milwaukee Brewers' Tyrone Taylor is congratulated after hitting a home run during the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Washington Nationals Sunday, May 22, 2022, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
            
              Milwaukee Brewers relief pitcher Brent Suter throws during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Washington Nationals Sunday, May 22, 2022, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
            
              Washington Nationals' Keibert Ruiz hits an RBI double during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers Sunday, May 22, 2022, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
            
              Washington Nationals' Juan Soto hits a two-run scoring single during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers Sunday, May 22, 2022, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
            
              Washington Nationals' Juan Soto hits a two-run scoring single during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers Sunday, May 22, 2022, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
            
              Milwaukee Brewers' Mike Brosseau tags out Washington Nationals' Nelson Cruz at second as he tries to stretch a single into a double during the fourth inning of a baseball game Sunday, May 22, 2022, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
            
              Milwaukee Brewers starting pitcher Freddy Peralta leaves the game with a trainer during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Washington Nationals Sunday, May 22, 2022, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)
            
              Washington Nationals' Cesar Hernandez bunts for an RBI single during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers Sunday, May 22, 2022, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

MILWAUKEE (AP) — The slumping Washington Nationals hitters are heading home with a confidence boost while the NL Central-leading Milwaukee Brewers begin their longest trip of the season without one of their All-Star pitchers available.

Lane Thomas hit two RBI doubles and the Nationals broke out of their doldrums Sunday in an 8-2 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers, who lost Freddy Peralta to shoulder tightness in the fourth inning.

Brewers manager Craig Counsell said Peralta will undergo an MRI on Monday and will be heading to the injured list.

“Hopefully, it’s nothing that big or crazy, but it’s part of the game,” Peralta said. “We’ll see what happens.”

The Brewers begin an 11-game, 10-day trip Monday in San Diego.

Peralta (3-2) left after allowing a run-scoring double to Thomas during the Nationals’ six-run outburst in the fourth inning.

“I thought in the second inning, he didn’t have the same life on his fastball,” Brewers catcher Omar Narváez said. “In the third inning, I went out to see how he felt. … I asked him how he was feeling and he said he was a little tight. I told him there’s no point this early in the season trying to be the hero.”

Washington’s six runs in the fourth marked its most productive inning of the season and matched the biggest run total the Brewers had allowed in a single inning this year.

The Nationals entered the day having dropped seven of their past nine, and they had scored a total of six runs in the seven losses. But they had an early 8-0 lead Sunday and cruised to the win in their final game before starting a seven-game homestand.

“Maybe that’ll spark something and we can get some wins over the next few weeks here and get back in it,” Thomas said.

Milwaukee didn’t retire anyone in the fourth until Nelson Cruz – the eighth batter of the inning – got thrown out trying to stretch a bloop single down the right-field line into a double. The Nationals first eight batters of the inning all got hits, tying a Washington franchise record for consecutive plate appearances with a hit.

The Nationals led 3-0 and had runners on second and third when Peralta’s injury forced his departure. Peralta, a 2021 All-Star, entered the day having allowed just one run over 12 2/3 innings in his previous two starts.

“I think when guys are on a roll, they’re throwing strikes,” Thomas said. “I think we were just aggressive on pitches in the middle of the plate. That was my game plan. Pretty good fastball. It plays up a little bit. I was just going to be aggressive on the fastball and drive some runs in.”

Dee Strange-Gordon and César Hernández greeted reliever Brent Suter with consecutive RBI bunt singles on squeeze plays to make it 5-0. That was the first time the Nationals have produced bunt RBIs in consecutive at-bats, according to Elias Sports Bureau.

Keibert Ruiz followed with an RBI double before Juan Soto hit a two-run single through a drawn-in infield.

Nationals manager Dave Martinez had altered his lineup Sunday by moving Soto from second to third and moving Ruiz into the No. 2 spot. Ruiz had gone 8 of 16 in his past five games going into Sunday, while Soto was 2 of 20 over his past six games.

“I wanted to try something different,” Martinez said. “Today, they both drove in some runs. Hopefully they continue to do that.”

The Nationals took a 1-0 lead in the second inning when Maikel Franco reached on a two-out infield hit and came home on Thomas’ double to right. They extended the lead to 2-0 in the third as Cruz hit a two-out single to drive in Hernández.

Milwaukee got a solo homer from Tyrone Taylor and an RBI fielder’s choice by Andrew McCutchen in the fifth.

Nationals starter Aaron Sanchez (3-3) struck out one and gave up seven hits, two runs and two walks in five innings.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Nationals pitchers Stephen Strasburg and Joe Ross will begin rehabilitation assignments Tuesday.

Ross will pitch for Double-A Harrisburg and Strasburg will join Class A Fredericksburg. Martinez said they’re planning for each of the right-handers to work four innings and throw 60-plus pitches.

Strasburg is recovering from thoracic outlet syndrome surgery and has pitched a total of 26 2/3 innings since the start of the 2020 season. Ross hasn’t pitched in a major league game since Aug. 10 because of a partially torn elbow ligament.

The Nationals pinch-hit for Cruz in the seventh inning. Martinez said Cruz sprained his ankle sliding into second in the fourth.

“He’s going to be day to day,” Martinez said. “He was pretty sore.”

UP NEXT

Nationals: Open a three-game series with the Los Angeles Dodgers on Monday. Scheduled starters are RHP Joan Adon (1-7, 6-38 ERA) for the Nationals and LHP Tyler Anderson (4-0, 4.04) for the Dodgers.

Brewers: Begin a three-game series Monday at San Diego. RHP Adrian Houser (3-4, 3.22) will start for the Brewers.

___

This story has been corrected to show that Andrew McCutchen had a fielder’s choice, not a single, in the fifth inning for the Milwaukee Brewers. McCutchen singled in the fourth inning.

___

More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Wrexham players look dejected after Sheffield's Billy Sharp scored his side's second goalduring the...
Associated Press

FA Cup dream over for Wrexham and its Hollywood owners

For Wrexham’s Hollywood owners, the sequel proved to be a heartbreaker. The Welsh soccer club owned by celebrities Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney lost its FA Cup replay with Sheffield United 3-1 on Tuesday, conceding two goals deep into stoppage time. A win for Wrexham, the lowest-ranked team remaining in the famous old competition, would […]
2 days ago
FILE -, Mat Ishbia, left, watches with his family during the second half of an NBA basketball game ...
Associated Press

Mat Ishbia to AP: Suns ‘will be one of best places to work’

Mat Ishbia said his first major project as owner of the Phoenix Suns will be to listen to employees and figure out what problems they’ve faced. After that, he’ll start fixing. The tenure of embattled Robert Sarver as owner of the NBA’s Suns and WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury officially ended Tuesday, when Ishbia — the chairman, […]
2 days ago
Diana Taurasi takes part in drills during a minicamp for the U.S women's national basketball team, ...
Associated Press

Diana Taurasi has sights set on playing at Paris Olympics

Diana Taurasi said immediately after winning her fifth Olympic gold medal in Tokyo that she might try for a record sixth in Paris. It’s still on her mind 17 months out of the 2024 Paris Olympics. “It’s something that it’s on my radar,” Taurasi told The Associated Press in a phone interview Tuesday after the […]
2 days ago
This photo provided by Bud Light shows a scene from Bud Light 2023 Super Bowl NFL football spot. A ...
Associated Press

Here’s why this year’s Super Bowl beer ads go beyond Bud

NEW YORK (AP) — A bevy of booze brands will be in the Super Bowl ad lineup this year, now that Anheuser-Busch has ended its exclusive advertising sponsorship after more than 30 years. In addition to celebrities hawking Budweiser and Michelob Ultra, viewers will see some famous folks touting the qualities of Heineken and Coors, […]
2 days ago
Ukraine's Ivan Kovbasnyuk speeds down the course during the super G portion of an alpine ski, men's...
Associated Press

Ukrainian skier pushes to keep Russians out of the Olympics

COURCHEVEL, France (AP) — Ukrainian skier Ivan Kovbasnyuk, a two-time Olympian, can’t train at home in the Carpathian Mountains because war in the country has damaged the power grid so severely that there’s not enough energy to make the chairlifts operate. That’s just one of the reasons why he thinks athletes from Russia and Belarus […]
2 days ago
FILE - Labor Secretary Marty Walsh speaks during a briefing at the White House in Washington, May 1...
Associated Press

AP sources: Walsh to leave Biden Cabinet for NHL union

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh is expected to leave the Biden administration to run the National Hockey League Players’ Association, according to two people familiar with his plans. The hockey players’ union has been searching for a new executive director to take over for Don Fehr, who had been in charge for […]
2 days ago
Nats win 8-2; Brewers’ Peralta exits with shoulder tightness