Nats’ Burnett takes responsibility for Monday’s loss

It was last year when reliever Sean Burnett was arguably the Nationals’ MVP. In 73 games, he had a 2.14 ERA and was given a two-year, $3.95 million extension with a mutual option for 2013.

This year, Burnett is having a season he would like to forget. In 25 games, the left-hander has allowed 12 earned runs in 19 1/3 innings. Even worse, Burnett has inherited 17 runners, and nine of them have scored.

One of those inherited runners scored the tying run Monday in a 5-4 loss to the Phillies at Nationals Park. Placido Polanco scored on a single by Ryan Howard. Burnett, who ended up becoming the losing pitcher, would later allow the go-ahead run to score on a sacrifice fly by Raul Ibanez.

After the game, Burnett felt bad that he prevented teammate Livan Hernandez from winning his fourth game of the season.

“I feel good, I feel strong, but I’ve been terrible,” Burnett said. “There is no way to explain it — flat out terrible. It’s [not good] to let another win by Livo go down the drain. To score four off [Phillies right-hander Roy] Halladay — three home runs — it’s a game we should win. It’s terrible.”

Burnett said poor execution is the reason for his disappointing season. He acknowledged that he has had problems with all of his pitchers. Currently, Burnett doesn’t have a solution on how to fix his problems on the mound.

“The things is, I have good outings and bad outings,” Burnett said. “I just have no consistency right now. You can’t have good starts slip away. It’s unfortunate and not acceptable. I hold myself to a higher standard. I’m the first to take blame on this one.”


Sean, Chin up. It will all of a sudden be there. You are doing a great job !!!

Keep your head up, Sean. Everyone has to deal with hard times. It’s how you handle them that makes the difference. You have handled hard times before and did great!

Sean, you are an exceptional pitcher, you’ll turn it around.

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