Washington Nationals: The legend of Juan Soto has another chapter

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NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 13: Juan Soto #22 of the Washington Nationals celebrates his fourth inning three run home run against the New York Yankees with teammates Daniel Murphy #20 and Matt Adams #15 at Yankee Stadium on June 13, 2018 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 13: Juan Soto #22 of the Washington Nationals celebrates his fourth inning three run home run against the New York Yankees with teammates Daniel Murphy #20 and Matt Adams #15 at Yankee Stadium on June 13, 2018 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /
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After two straight shutouts, the Washington Nationals needed a jolt on offense. It was youngster Juan Soto who provided it in a huge way with two homers.

The Washington Nationals were desperate for a spark on offense against the New York Yankees on Wednesday. It came from young phenom Juan Soto, who launched two huge home runs to add to his budding legacy.

Trailing 3-1 in the top of the fourth inning, it looked like the same old story for the Nats. But then Soto flicked one the opposite way for a three-run homer after a two out out rally. That put the Nationals 4-3 up, but he wasn’t done there

Fellow rookie Gleyber Torres responded with a bomb of his own to level things in the fifth inning. Step up, Juan Soto. He launched one into the Yankee Stadium jet-stream out in right field to put his team 5-4 up.

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The 19 year old continues to pass all tests put in his way, with a .344 average and an OPS north of 1.000. He even has one more walk than strikeout. There is simply no way that the Nationals brass can send him down in the near-future.

The question now, is how much will Soto feature against left-handers with the outfield logjam. He sat on Tuesday with CC Sabathia on the hill, but his second homer was off lefty Chasen Shreve. It’s surely only a matter of time before his days off become less frequent.

Justin Miller is still filthy

Nats reliever Justin Miller picked up his fourth win since being promoted just over three weeks ago. It’s hard to believe but this was his second worst outing of the season. He allowed one single over 1.2 innings of work. Yes, that’s how good he’s been that this was one of his worst.

Since his last major league stint with the Colorado Rockies, Miller has made a slight change in his mechanics. This has allowed him to have the incredible success with the Nationals so far in 2018, and looks set to continue.

With Brandon Kintzler on the DL, Miller seems to have escalated himself into a high-leverage role. If Ryan Madson or Sean Doolittle are unavailable at any point, don’t be surprised to see him step in for them going forward.

Erick Fedde grinds through five tough innings

After injuries to Stephen Strasburg and Jeremy Hellickson, the Nationals recalled Erick Fedde to make the start Wednesday. Talk about being thrown into fire. An assignment against the league’s most productive offense seemed daunting.

But on the whole Fedde managed to keep the game in check, only allowing six hits and one walk. However, two of those hits cleared the fences, which is out of character for the right-hander this year.

With the Syracuse Chiefs he had given up just three long balls in 56.2 innings. And even then, all of those came in one game against the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs. So we can chalk this up to facing a deadly lineup.

If he makes another start, it will likely come against the very same Yankees next Monday in the second half of a twin-bill. Hopefully, he can learn from this and grow into a dependable major league pitcher.

Next: Realmuto on Nats' Radar

The Washington Nationals have another off-day Thursday, and then head to Toronto to take on the Blue Jays. With three right-handers scheduled, Juan Soto is ready to steal the limelight yet again.

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