Marty Niland: Seattle slugfest shows Nats can beat anyone, anywhere

The Nationals and their fans bid a reluctant farewell to Seattle after the team pounded a Mariners staff with the lowest ERA in baseball for 10 home runs over three days in pitcher-friendly Safeco Field. Manager Matt Williams told reporters before the series that it was not necessarily a measuring stick for a team that has struggled against top competition. Even so, it was a ... read more

Opposite dugout: Top two teams in NL meet as Dodgers welcome Nats

Manager: Don Mattingly, fourth year Record: 77-60 Last 10 games: 6-4 Who to watch: 1B Adrian Gonzalez (.279/.337/.465, 35 doubles, 19 HR, 91 RBIs); RF Yasiel Puig (.298/.384/.489, 33 doubles, 9 triples, 13 HR, 59 RBIs); OF Matt Kemp (.279/.345/.468, 31 doubles, 16 HR, 64 RBIs); LHP Clayton Kershaw (16-3, 1.73 ERA, 0.84 WHIP) Season series vs. Nats: 1-2, 10 runs scored, 10 runs allowed ... read more

Opposite dugout: Mariners, Nats put baseball's top two pitching staffs head-to-head

Manager: Lloyd McClendon, first year Record: 72-60 Last 10 games: 6-4 Who to watch: 2B Robinson Cano (.325/.393/.469, 30 doubles, 12 HR, 71 RBIs); 3B Kyle Seager (.275/.344/.471, 26 doubles, 20 HR, 81 RBIs); RHP Felix Hernandez (13-4, 2.07 ERA, 0.89 WHIP); RHP Hisashi Iwakuma (12-6, 2.83 ERA, 0.98 WHIP) Season series vs. Nats (2013): Did not play Pitching probables Aug. 29: Felix Hernandez vs. ... read more

Patrick Reddington: Nats remained at even keel during 10-game winning streak

Before the Nationals' run of 10 straight wins, which started on Aug. 12 and lasted until Aug. 22, the longest winning streak this season came over a five-game stretch between June 28 and July 2, when the Nats beat the Chicago Cubs in both games of a doubleheader in Wrigley Field and took three straight from the Colorado Rockies on the road in Coors Field. ... read more

David Huzzard: Changing the Nationals' narrative

Way back on May 28, the Nationals were 25-27, averaging 3.9 runs a game and allowing 3.9 runs a game. The Nationals were two games under .500 and playing like they were a .500 team. The narrative at that time was that they were one of the most disappointing teams in baseball and the hangover from Game 5 in the 2012 National League Division Series ... read more

Rachel Levitin: Keeping score enriches the experience of baseball

It's safe to say at this point that this year's Nationals are pretty good at baseball. They've been a thrill to watch, especially the last couple of weeks. Close games turned nail-biters turned walk-off wins - that's a few of the ways the 2014 Nats will be remembered. And the good news is there's several ways to commemorate a good season of well-played baseball. Today, ... read more

Opposite dugout: Last-place Phillies starting to play spoiler for postseason contenders

Manager: Ryne Sandberg, second year Record: 58-72 Last 10 games: 5-5 Who to watch: RF Marlon Byrd (.269/.317/.466, 24 doubles, 23 HR, 75 RBIs); 2B Chase Utley (.280/.349/.428, 29 doubles, 11 HR, 69 RBIs); CF Ben Revere (.314/.333/.368, 58 R, 38 SB); LHP Cole Hamels (7-6, 2.53 ERA, 1.16 WHIP) Season series vs. Nats: 5-8, 41 runs scored, 63 runs allowed Pitching probables Aug. 25: ... read more

Marty Niland: Homestand for the ages shows Nats have character

Has there ever been a better time to be a Nationals fan? A team that some baseball experts called the biggest disappointment of the season just a few weeks ago now sits atop the National League after a 9-1 homestand for the ages - the most remarkable this team has seen since moving to town. This one wasn't quite as successful as the 12-1 run ... read more