Nationals Game Notes: September 8 vs. Philadelphia Phillies

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Philadelphia Phillies (62-77) vs. Washington Nationals (82-57)
RHP Alec Asher [0-0, -.–] | RHP A.J. Cole [1-1, 3.86]
Thursday, September 8 l Game #140 / Home #68 l Nationals Park l Washington, D.C. l 7:05 P.M.
Television: MASN l Radio: 106.7 The Fan & Nationals Radio Network

EXTRA-SPECIAL SWEEP
With a 5-4, extra-innings victory over the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday morning (secured just before 1 a.m. on a bases-loaded RBI-single by C Wilson Ramos in the 11th inning), the Nationals’ collected their 10th sweep of the 2016 season and recorded their 82nd victory…The triumph ensured that Washington will finish with a winning record for the fifth consecutive season, making them the only team in the Major Leagues to have accomplished that feat with the 2016 season included…Entering 2016 NYY (23 straight seasons), STL (8), and LAD (5) also had active consecutive-season winning streaks.

  • The Nationals’ sweep of the Braves pushed their record vs. Atlanta this season to 14-2…With a three-game series on tap at Turner Field Sept. 16-18, Washington is well within striking distance of its best season series record vs. any single opponent in club history (2005-present), a mark currently held by the 2014 team vs. NYM (15-4).
  • At 82-57 (.590), the Nationals boast the second-best record in the National League, trailing only the Cubs (89-50, .640)…WSH ranks 2nd in the NL with a +143 run differential.
  • Washington’s 41-26 (.612) home record is good for the third-best mark in the National League, behind only the Cubs (51-20, .718) and the Dodgers (47-27, .635)…With just 23 games remaining in the regular season, Washington has played the second-fewest home games of any team in the NL (67) with 14 of those remaining 23 coming at Nationals Park.

TAMING THE PHILS
The Nationals enter this weekend’s four-game set having swept the Phillies in three straight series for the first time in franchise history (Nationals/Expos) and riding the first nine-game winning streak in franchise history against the Phillies.

MURPHY JOINS CLUB 100
Nationals 2B Daniel Murphy went 3-for-6 and drove in two runs with a game-tying single in the seventh inning on Wednesday night…The RBI were No.’s 99 & 100 for Murphy on the season, giving him the sixth 100-RBI season in Nationals history (2005-present)…Murphy is just the fourth player in Nationals history to post a 100-RBI campaign, and the first since 1B Adam LaRoche drove in 100 in 2012…Murphy also joins Ryan Zimmerman (2006, 110; 2009, 106), Adam Dunn (2009, 105; 2010, 103) in the Nationals’ history books.

  • Murphy leads the National League in batting average (.345), slugging percentage (.595), OPS (.983), doubles (T1st, 39), and multi-hit games (53)…He also ranks among NL hitters in RBI (2nd, 100), extra base hits (T4th, 69), & hits (T2nd, 171).
  • Murphy ranks tied for 3rd in MLB with 30 go-ahead RBI & is 4th with 16 game-winning RBI.

WHAT A RELIEF
With RHP Stephen Strasburg removed due to injury in the third inning and Wednesday’s contest reaching the 11th frame, the Nationals’ bullpen delivered 8.2 innings of work, its most since July 17 vs. PIT (11.0 IP)…Nine relievers combined to throw a bullpen season-high 167 pitches, with seven of the nine posting scoreless appearances.

  • The Nationals enter the meat of their September schedule possessing the best bullpen ERA in the National League (3.29), a mark that sits just behind the Kansas City Royals for the best in MLB (3.14)…Washington’s relievers have also combined to allow the fewest home runs in the National League (39).
  • Washington’s ‘pen has been incredibly stingy when inheriting runners, allowing just 25.7 percent of all IR to cross the plate, second in MLB only to SFG’s 21.1 percent.

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