Washington Nationals fall to San Diego, 6-5, lose more ground in NL East

nationals_logoGio Gonzalez was hit hard, again, but the Washington Nationals almost fought their way out of the early hole. Almost, of course, isn’t good enough, and the Nats fell to the San Diego Padres, 6-5, on Wednesday at Nationals Park, falling six and a half games out of first in the NL East.

Gonzalez (9-7, 4.11 ERA) lost his third straight start, giving up five runs, four earned, on seven hits in four and two-thirds innings. He has a 7.64 ERA in his last three starts, with his ERA going from 3.50 to 4.11 in the stretch.

Down 5-0 when Gonzalez left the game, Washington got back into it, getting an RBI groundout by Ryan Zimmerman in the fourth and a sacrifice fly RBI by Zimmerman in the sixth. A Justin Upton homer in the seventh, his second of the game and 22nd of the season, made it 6-2 Padres, but Washington got three back in the bottom of the seventh, on an RBI walk by Anthony Rendon and a two-run single by Bryce Harper.

With runners on the corners and one down, and a 3-0 count in his favor, Yunel Escobar grounded into an inning-ending double play, ending that threat, and the Nats went down in order in the eighth and ninth.

Tyson Ross (9-9, 3.42) got the win for San Diego, giving up four runs on six hits in six and a third.

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