Nationals Game Notes: August 6 vs. San Francisco Giants
San Francisco Giants (62-47) at Washington Nationals (65-44)
RHP Matt Cain [3-6, 5.53] | RHP Stephen Strasburg [15-1, 2.63]
Saturday, August 6 l Game #110 / Home #53 l Nationals Park l Washington, D.C. l 7:05 P.M.
Television: MASN l Radio: 106.7 The Fan & Nationals Radio Network
ROLLING RIGHT ALONG
The Nationals opened their eight-game homestand on Friday night with a 5-1 victory over the visiting San Francisco Giants…Nationals LHP Gio Gonzalez dazzled, tossing 7.0 innings of one-run ball (solo home run) in his longest start since June 9…In his last five starts, since July 10, Gonzalez is now 3-1 with a 2.03 ERA…The Nationals bats also drove in runs in four of eight innings, including home runs from CF Trea Turner and C Wilson Ramos.
- With the win, the Nationals (65-44, .596) boast the second-best record in Major League Baseball, behind only the Chicago Cubs (67-41, .620)…At 32-20 (.615), the Nationals also own the second-best home record in the National League (also behind CHI, 37-17; .685).
- WSH ranks second in MLB with a +140 run differential, also behind only CHI (+176).
- The Nationals’ homestand will continue on Saturday with the second of three games against the Giants…Washington will also welcome Cleveland (two games) and Atlanta (three games) during this stay at Nationals Park.
OFF THE BLOCKS
The Nationals opened Friday night’s game with authority, tagging the Giants for two runs in the first inning…They were the 86th and 87th first-inning runs Washington has scored this season, the most in the Major Leagues by a wide margin, per STATS, LLC (BAL ranks second with 79).
- In contrast, the Nationals’ pitchers have surrendered just 57 first-inning runs.
- The 2014 Nationals are the current owners of the record for most first-inning runs in Nationals history (2005-pres.) with 93.
The Nationals’ starting pitchers, who already lead the Major Leagues with 700 strikeouts this season, have been doing yeoman’s work lately…Since July 27, the Nationals’ starting staff leads the National League in ERA (2.16) and opponent batting average (.183), while ranking second in innings pitched (58.1).
- The 2015 Nationals starting staff struck out a franchise record (Nationals/Expos) 921 batters in 162 games (8.58 K/9.0 IP)…The 2016 Nationals are currently outpacing that mark, striking out 9.26 batters per nine innings thus far this season.
- Including Gonzalez’s performance on Friday night, the Nationals’ starters have now allowed two earned runs or fewer in nine of the Nationals’ last 12 games.
LEADING THE WAY
Nationals 2B Daniel Murphy’s RBI-single put Washington on the board on Friday…Murphy, the NL Player of the Month for July, has hit safely in 18 of the 20 games he’s played since July 7…During this current stretch, Murphy is hitting .408 (29-for-71) with nine doubles, one triple, seven home runs, 25 RBI, six walks, one stolen base and 17 runs scored.
- Murphy’s single, which gave the Nationals the 1-0 lead in the first, was his 25th go-ahead RBI of the season — the most in the Major Leagues and three more than anyone else in the National League.
- Murphy also leads all National League hitters in average (.356), slugging percentage (.626), OPS (1.022), hits (139), doubles (32), extra-base hits (58) and multi-hit games (44).
- In addition to the categories above, Murphy also leads all NL 2B in HR (21) & RBI (81).
IF YOU’RE LOOKING FOR JW, HE’S ON BASE
With a single in the first inning on Friday, Nationals LF Jayson Werth extended his on-base streak to a career-high 36 games…It is the longest active streak in the Major Leagues and tied for the longest on-base streak in MLB this season (MIA OF Marcell Ozuna 36 games, 4/21-5/29).
- Werth’s run is now tied for the second-longest on-base streak in Nationals history (2005-present), tied with Denard Span (36 games, 6/28-8/10, 2014), and behind only 1B Ryan Zimmerman (43 games, 4/8-5/25, 2009).
- During this stretch, Werth has collected 33 hits (11 2B, 3 HR), 26 walks and has posted a .383 on-base percentage.
Nationals INF/OF Trea Turner is hitting .362 (17-for-47) in his last 11 games, including a 2-for-4 evening on Friday that included a double and a home run (his second HR in as many games)…Since July 24, Turner has three doubles, two triples, two home runs, two walks, five stolen bases and 10 runs scored.
- Similarly, since July 16, 3B Anthony Rendon is hitting .328 (20-for-61) with five doubles, four home runs, 13 RBI, seven walks, three stolen bases and 11 runs scored…He has hit safely in 12 of the 16 games, including seven multi-hit efforts.