Washington Nationals take series opener from first-place Braves

washington nationalsStephen Strasburg, on a good night’s sleep, struck out seven Atlanta Braves over five and a a thirds innings, but did his most damage at the plate, homering and driving in five runs, keying a 13-4 Nats win in the opener of a key four-game series.

Strasburg (12-4, 3.52 ERA) gave up three runs on eight hits, but the Nats were never in trouble, getting an eight-spot in the third to break the game open, in which Strasburg had a single and scored on an Adam Eaton triple, then added a three-run homer later in the inning.

Strasburg then added a two-run single in the fifth that made it 10-1 Washington.

The win pulls the Nats to five and a half games back of the Braves in the NL East.

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