Nationals Game Notes: April 17 at Philadelphia

Washington Nationals (9-1) at Philadelphia Phillies (5-7)
LHP Gio Gonzalez [0-0, 0.00] | RHP Charlie Morton [0-1, 5.23]
Sunday, April 17 l Game #11 / Road #5 l Citizens Bank Park l Philadelphia, PA
Television: MASN l Radio: 106.7 The Fan & Nationals Radio Network

20160417 lineupSTARTING STRONG…
The Nationals pushed their winning streak to seven consecutive games on Saturday night with an 8-1 win over the Philadelphia Phillies, improving to 9-1 on the season…Owners of the best record in the Major Leagues, the Nationals’ fast start has placed them into the record books:

  • The 9-1 start is not only the best in Nationals history (2005-present), but it’s also the best in franchise (Nationals/Expos) history, and the best in D.C. baseball history.
  • Both the 1974 Montreal Expos and the 1951 Washington Senators began the season 7-2, the previous best.
  • The 2015 Nationals’ longest winning streak stretched to eight games, which the 2016 Nationals could match this afternoon in Philadelphia.

RHP Max Scherzer continued the Nationals’ strong stretch of starting pitching with 7.0 innings allowing just one run on Saturday, making it the fifth straight game a Nationals starter has allowed two earned runs or fewer.

  • Through the season’s first 10 games, the Nationals’ starting pitching staff has worked to a Major League-best 1.93 ERA…The next closest team, the Chicago Cubs, has posted a 2.49 ERA.
  • Nationals’ starters have been exceptional this last turn through the rotation, having allowed just three earned runs in their last 35.1 innings…Nationals starters have averaged 7.0 IP in this stretch and combined on a 0.76 ERA.

Nationals OF Bryce Harper homered for the third consecutive game on Saturday night, his fifth straight game at Citizens Bank Park with a longball, dating to 2015.

  • Harper now has at least two hits and at least one home run in his last five games at Citizens Bank Park…According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Harper joins Jim Bottomley as the only opposing players in modern MLB history (since 1900) to have two hits and at least one home run in five straight games at PHI…Bottomley did so for the St. Louis Cardinals from July 5-9, 1929.
  • Also via Elias, Harper is the fourth visiting player to homer in five straight games against Philadelphia, joining Bottomley (1929), Ernie Banks (1955), and current Phillies broadcaster Matt Stairs (2004-07), who came over to the Phillies’ side in 2008 and played for the Nationals in 2011…Only Banks extended his streak to six games.
  • Harper’s current three-game home run streak ties the longest of his career, done three times before, all in 2015 (May 6-9, Sept. 4-6, Sept. 14-16)…Should he homer in Sunday’s contest it would be the longest consecutive stretch of games with a home run in his career.

Learn more about tonight’s match-up, including plenty of pitcher and hitter notes in today’s game notes:

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