- Associated Press - Friday, August 21, 2015

DENVER (AP) - Max Scherzer reached a big milestone with his 200th strikeout of the season. However, he couldn’t get a win.

Scherzer gave up three runs and eight hits in six innings in the Washington Nationals’ 3-2 loss to the Colorado Rockies on Thursday night.

Colorado’s Yohan Flande pitched seven strong innings and singled twice, driving in a run and scoring a run to help drop Scherzer (11-10) to 0-3 in four career starts at Coors Field.

“It’s just frustrating because I felt like it was good, but it wasn’t good enough,” Scherzer said. “I made the adjustment. My arm slot was higher, felt like I was on top of the ball, felt like my changeup was back but they were able to find a couple holes and sometimes that led to bigger innings. Just couldn’t control those innings.”

The Rockies managed to get just enough of their hits to drop in, though Scherzer struck out seven, including Nolan Arenado in the fifth to become the third Nationals pitcher to reach 200 strikeouts in a season. Gio Gonzalez and Stephen Strasburg also have done it.

“I’ve been pitching with good stuff,” Scherzer said. “Piling up strikeouts, that’s part of my game. I plan for it and try to do it. To do it at this part of the season shows a lot of success in a lot of different areas. I just got to get back on track and keep going forward and keep pitching well, no matter what. It’s not always about the strikeouts, it’s about how well you pitch.”

On this night, Flande got the better of him. Flande (3-1) allowed two runs and three hits to help the Rockies avoid a series sweep.

Ben Paulsen singled in the seventh to drive in the tiebreaking run and Jose Reyes added three hits, including an RBI double for the Rockies.

“He got a lot of grounders,” Washington manager Matt Williams said of Flande. “But he established (the) low strike. If he can do that, then he’s difficult because you got to offer at it.”

Washington’s Michael A. Taylor connected for his 11th homer, a two-run drive that reached the seats beyond straightaway center. According to MLB.com’s Statcast, the homer measured at 493 feet, longest in the majors this season.

John Axford struck out the side in the ninth around a leadoff single by Bryce Harper and a walk to Ryan Zimmerman for his 17th save. It was his first save this month after blowing four previous opportunities.

Flande took a two-hitter into the seventh inning with a 2-0 lead before walking Zimmerman with two outs. Taylor followed by driving Flande’s first pitch over the center-field wall to tie the score.

However, the Rockies regained the lead in their half of the seventh. Reyes singled to lead off the inning, chasing Scherzer. Carlos Gonzalez greeted reliever Felipe Rivero with a single. After reliever Blake Treinen struck out Nolan Arenado, Paulsen singled to center, driving in Reyes with the tiebreaking run.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Nationals: CF Denard Span (back tightness) and 2B Dan Uggla (back spasms) are scheduled to continue their rehab assignments Friday at Double-A Harrisburg. They were set to play Thursday with Class-A Hagerstown but the game was rained out. … RHP David Carpenter (right shoulder inflammation) was scheduled to resume his rehab assignment Friday with 20-25 pitches at high Class-A Potomac where he threw 15 pitches in one inning Wednesday in his first rehab outing.

UP NEXT

Nationals: LHP Gio Gonzalez (9-5) is slated to pitch Friday’s series opener against Milwaukee at Nationals Park, where he is 5-1 with 2.60 ERA this season.

Rockies: RHP Jon Gray (0-0) will be looking for his first big league win when he makes his fourth career start Friday in a series opener at Coors Field against the New York Mets.

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