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Nationals' Stephen Strasburg throws first career 'immaculate inning'

By
Jake Elman
Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg struck out 14 Marlins hitters Wednesday night. File Photo by Pat Benic/UPI
Washington Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg struck out 14 Marlins hitters Wednesday night. File Photo by Pat Benic/UPI | License Photo

July 4 (UPI) -- Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg threw his first career 'immaculate inning' as part of a 14-strikeout performance against the Miami Marlins.

Strasburg struck out Garrett Cooper, Neil Walker and Starlin Castro on nine pitches in the fourth inning Wednesday night at Nationals Park. His immaculate inning was the fourth in franchise history and the fifth by a Major League pitcher this season.

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"I was able to execute from the get-go," Strasburg said after the Nationals' 3-1 victory. "[I] was working on a couple things in the bullpen between starts. ... I just tried to get back to basics, and it seemed to be much better tonight."

Strasburg's 14 strikeouts were his most since recording 15 punchouts on May 27, 2017. The veteran pitcher threw 7 1/3 scoreless innings of two-hit ball and lowered his ERA to 3.64.

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Strasburg is 10-4 with 138 strikeouts in 116 1/3 innings this season.

"He was moving the ball back and forth unbelievable," catcher Yan Gomes said. "And then when he needed to make a pitch, it was right there."

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Washington is 44-41 this season. The Nationals are 25-10 since May 24, the best record in the Major Leagues in that span.

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The Nationals and Chicago Cubs are tied for second in the National League Wild Card standings.

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