As we close the book on the regular season, this Washington Nationals team set a full-season record with their offense.
If you want to know why the Washington Nationals were such easy winners in the National League East, look no further than their offense. In the franchise’s 48 seasons, this year’s Nats scored a record 763 runs.
Tossing out the strike shortened 1994 and 1995 seasons in Montreal, this Nationals team scored 60 more than last year and 17 over the previous record of 746 set in 2006. What makes 2016’s mark amazing is no one scored over 91 runs. The record is a true team accomplishment.
Anthony Rendon, in case you were wondering, scored those team-high 91. Daniel Murphy crossed home plate 88 times while Jayson Werth and Bryce Harper registered on the scoreboard 84 times. As impressive as it is to set a franchise record, the Nats were fourth in the NL in runs scored.
More from District on Deck
- Latest DraftKings Sportsbook Promo Code in Maryland: Bet $5, Win $200 Guaranteed
- Nationals Claim Jeter Downs Off Waivers
- Washington Nationals Minor League Spotlight: Robert Hassell III
- Washington Nationals Tuesday Q&A
- 3 Free Agents the Nationals Should Gamble On
Five second-half regulars registered an above-average Adjusted OPS+. Murphy, and his .347 average, led the team with 157. Trea Turner, who wowed everybody, was second with 144. Even Harper, who struggled with his swing all year, drew enough walks and extra-base hits to post a 116.
Although most of the attention focused down the stretch on the starting pitching and how the offense could not put two hits together, we missed the bigger picture. Over 162 games, the Washington Nationals averaged 4.71 runs per game. Sure, slugging 203 home runs helped. Six players swatted over 20, the first time it happened in the NL since the 1965 Milwaukee Braves.
The kicker is, no one hit over Murphy’s 25. Again, the Nats may not have one player who gives pitcher’s nightmares—unless you are the New York Mets and Murphy is at the plate—but they feature a deep team that possesses power and the ability to reach base. Better than any other team over a 162-game schedule.
How this plays out in the next couple of weeks is a crapshoot. There are no more games against the Atlanta Braves and Philadelphia Phillies left. Instead, the Los Angeles Dodgers and, probably, the Chicago Cubs await if the Nats advance. Runs will be at a premium.
For now, no matter how the season ends, the 2016 version of the Washington Nationals set a record. With Harper in a year-long funk, would you have guessed this was the most productive offense ever? Baseball is a funny game.