Tune in at 7:05 PM ET as the Rays take on the Nationals. Jason Buccheri will be liveblogging for your enjoyment.
Good evening everyone, welcome to the ScoreMobile. We’ll be following a fantastic inter-league match up tonight - two of the best teams on the East Coast, the Tampa Bay Rays and the Washington Nationals, will clash at Nationals Park. Please feel free to join in the discussion, ask questions and state opinions. I’ll be sure to post all comments that are clean, inquisitive and informative. I'll also be posting questions and polls for the ScoreMobile faithful to participate in.
Here are tonight's starting pitchers:
Chris Archer, RHP (Making his MLB Debut)
SP - Stephen Strasburg, RHP (8-1, 2.45 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, 100 Ks)
Strasburg throw the first pitch at 7:07 pm EST and he strikes out Jennings on a great curveball at exactly 7:09. Pena steps in to face the phenom for the first time in his career.
On the 4th pitch of the at-bat, a change-up away, Pena goes down on Ks. Upton is up, let's see if he can put the bat to the ball.
Upton worked the count to 3-1 before taking a 99 MPH fastball for ball four. Matsui steps up to the plate.
Matsui finally makes contact for the Rays, but grounds out feebly to short to end the inning. Due up: Lobardozzi, Harper and Zimmerman.
Welcome everyone, we're scoping out some great young talent tonight in this ball game. Strasburg is off to a fireballing start and Chris Archer, a 23 yrs old, will make his MLB debut.
@Stuart Nairn great to chat again, it always a pleasure. It's going to be hard to go against Stras tonight, especially against a rookie pitcher in Archer.
Lombardozzi welcomes Archer to the bigs with a leadoff double. Phenom #3 already tonight by my count, Bryce Harper, steps up to the dish.
For the first time since Matt Garza started Sept. 30, 2010, a pitcher who wasn't drafted by the Rays' organization will get the start. Archer’s start tonight will end the 232 straight games streak.
And Harper follows Lombardozzi's double with a single to RF. Lombardozzi scores, Harper now already has 20 RBI on the year.
Zimmerman works the count to 2-1. The man, the mountain, Michael Morse is on deck.
Zimmerman hit the ball to Johnson at short. Harper foolishly took off, but the throw got by Rodriguez at third and slowly rolls all the way into the Rays dugout. Harper scores and Zimmerman moves to second.
Correction - LaRoche is at the plate. The mountain, Michal Morse is up next.
Archer is having a nightmare first inning in the bigs! He just uncorked a wild pitch that allowed Zimmerman to move to third. Still none out.
LaRoche just watched a very sharp breaking ball for strike three. Morse at the dish.
Morse hits it sharply to Johnson at SS and is thrown out at first for the second out of the inning. Zimmerman still at third.
@Stuart Nairn I think they have to cap him, but it's going to be really hard to do so with how well the team is doing. It's going to be interesting to see how it all pans out, Im glad it's not my call.
Desmond hits a hard ground ball through the right side of the IF; Zimmerman scores and the inning continues for Espinosa.
Espinosa grounds out to end the inning. The Nats take advantage of the rookie pitcher and score 3 times in the first. The Ray's D, which has been horrible so far this year, didn't help out any by committing an error that was part ugly, part lazy with a pinch of bad luck.
Zobrist goes first pitch swinging and lines a 96 MPH fastball right at LaRoche at first for out 1. Johnson steps up to the plate.
Johnson strikes out on a devastating cartoon curveball for the second out of the inning. Molina brother #2 digs in to the box.
Molina smashes a two-seam fastball over the fence in RF! The rays are on the board!
Rodriguez goes down on Ks - that's #4 for Strasburg. But the Rays respond with one in the top of the first on a sweet jack by Jose Molina!
Jesus Flores goes down swinging for the first out of the second. That's Archers first career strikeout.
Strasburg scorches one on the ground the Eliot Johnson's glove side, but Johnson makes the smooth scoop and tosses over to first to record the second out of the inning. Lombarduzzi at the dish.
Archer settles down nicely with another strikeout. This time Lombardozzi goes down looking on a nice back-door curve.
Archer, Jennings and Pena due up.
After taking the first pitch for a strike, Archer hits a ground ball to short and almost beats the throw out at first. That may have been the fastest pitcher going down the line I've ever seen!
Jennings laces a shot to third, but it's right at Zimmerman. 2 out. Carlos Pena up.
Strasburg loses Pena on a 3-2 fastball that was far outside. Upton at the dish. 2 out one on.
Upton fights off a few tough pitches and then takes a fastball into LF for a single. Matsui up with runners on first and second, 2 out.
The veteran comes through! Matsui grounds a ball through the hole on the right side of the IF. That will drive in the Rays second run. Runners are on first and second for Zobrist. Zorilla hit the ball hard in his last AB.
4 straight change-ups - if you can really call them that at 90 Mph - get Zobrist to end the inning. Due up: Harper, Zimmerman and LaRoche
Harper leads-off the inning with a walk. What a great talent he is, taking walks like he does at such a young age. Here comes Ryan Zimmerman.
Zimmerman hits into a DP. That's the fourth double play the Rays have turned this series. LaRoche at the dish. Archer looks like he's settled down nicely.
Another great curve-ball gets LaRoche for the second time with his bat on his shoulder. I like what I see so far from Archer.
Johnson hits a dribbler to Zimmerman who makes a brilliant running toss to gun down Johnson at first.
Molina goes first pitch swinging and pops out. Srod steps up and he'll try to prevent a really quick inning for Strasburg.