Jake Irvin, Nationals shut down Dodgers 2-0

Right-hander Jake Irwin went six scoreless innings and CJ Abrams hit a leadoff home run as the Washington Nationals finished off a long California trip in style with a 2-0 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday afternoon.

Irwin gave up four hits with six strikeouts and one walk after he allowed just one hit against the Oakland Athletics last Friday while taking a no-decision in a game Washington lost. The Nationals went 5-4 on the trip, which also had a stop at San Francisco, in addition to Oakland and Los Angeles.

Dodgers right-hander Landon Knack went five strong innings in his major league debut, but the Los Angeles offense was held to five hits. Shohei Ohtani had three of those hits for Los Angeles in his 10th multi-hit game of the season.

The big-spending Dodgers have lost each of their last two series, both at home, and have dropped three of their past four series overall. Los Angeles was shut out for the first time after entering with the second most runs in the major leagues.

Abrams ripped Knack’s second career pitch into the seats in right-center field to give the Nationals the early 1-0 lead. It was Abrams’ second home run of the series and fifth of the season.

Jesse Winker and Luis Garcia Jr. added singles in the opening inning and Joey Meneses made it 2-0 with a sacrifice fly.

Knack (0-1) settled down from there, retiring 10 consecutive batters into the fifth inning and finishing his debut by giving up two runs on four hits over five innings with a walk and four strikeouts.

Irvin (1-0) was even better for the Nationals, keeping the Dodgers scoreless through his six innings despite Los Angeles getting a runner to second base with one out in three of the first four innings.

Three Washington relievers helped finish off the shutout with right-hander Kyle Finnegan earning his seventh save with a 1-2-3 ninth inning.

The Dodgers’ Mookie Betts went 0-for-4 one day after he became the first MLB player with a five-hit game this season.