Washington Nationals Rapid Reaction: Nats Unable To Dig Out Of Early Hole Vs. Padres

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Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

After winning three straight games, the Washington Nationals lost a tough one last night to the San Diego Padres by a final score of 6-5. Trailing 6-2 in the seventh inning, the Nats did put three runs on the board to cut the San Diego lead to one, but Yunel Escobar swung at a 3-0 pitch and grounded into an inning ending double play.

Gio Gonzalez took the ball last night for Wasington and he continued his downward spiral by giving up five runs (four earned runs) and he wasn’t able to finish the fifth inning. After being the most consistent starter in the month of July, Gonzalez has been one of the worst, if not the worst starter on the team this month.

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On the plus side, Denard Span continues to make an impact now that he’s back in the lineup. The Nats’ center fielder went 2-for-5 with a double and a run scored to increase his season average up to .301. But, until that seventh inning, the Nats could not do much against Padres’ starter, Tyson Ross. Ross went 6.1 innings, gave up four runs on six hits, struck out nine, and walked two in the win.

With the loss last night, the Nationals find themselves in a difficult hole as they are 6.5 games behind the New York Mets in the NL East with 37 games to go. Yes, Matt Williams fixed the rotation to get his top three starters against New York in less than two weeks, but if they don’t start going on a long winning streak soon, that’s not going to matter.

Before Andrew Cashner takes on Tyson Ross’ brother Joe tonight at Nats Park (7:05 PM ET, MASN), here are my takeaways from last night 6-5 Nats’ loss:

Next: Gonzalez's August Struggles Continue