Washington Nationals: 5 storylines to watch as Phillies make final trip to DC

MIAMI, FL - SEPTEMBER 3 : Nick Williams
MIAMI, FL - SEPTEMBER 3 : Nick Williams /
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washington nationals
washington nationals /

Howie Kendrick playing his former team

Players typically perform exceptionally well against their former teams, a phenomenon observed on multiple occasions. The Nats have a few players in Daniel Murphy and Max Scherzer, who have proven this to be true.

Howie Kendrick is another example of how players tend to haunt their former teams. In mid-August, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim visited Nationals Park and Kendrick, a former Angel, had one of the best games of his career.

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With just four homers on the season at that point, Kendrick crushed two more, hitting a half of his season total in one night. Kendrick’s multi-homer game also came on a night when the Nats’ offense was unable to put much together, so Kendrick’s big night was an essential aspect of the win.

This outstanding offensive performance was with the Nats, but Kendrick began the season with the Phillies. This will be his first time playing them as a former Phillie, but he has enjoyed lots of success against them in the past.

In 19 career games against Philadelphia, Kendrick owns a .342/.385/.562 slash line to go with his two homers, two triples, and 13 RBI’s.

Considering how players typically perform against their former teams, the fact that Kendrick has already enjoyed success against the Phillies and has never played against them since playing for them should excite Nats fans. Don’t be surprised if Kendrick has a huge series against his former team.

Next: Nats waiting for Trea Turner's resurgence

The Nationals are very close to winning the NL East, while the Phillies are struggling and are currently the second-worst team in the MLB. The two teams playing each other for the first time in months, the Nats’ first look at Rhys Hoskins, Max Scherzer’s scheduled start, J.P. Crawford’s first week in the majors, and Howie Kendrick playing against his former team should all be storylines to watch during what looks to be an exciting intra-division matchup.