SAN FRANCISCO -- The Washington Nationals again demonstrated their offensive depth and balance on Tuesday night, receiving contributions throughout the batting order to amass 14 hits and outclass the San Francisco Giants, 6-3.Trea Turner and Jayson Werth, Washington's first two hitters, went 5-for-9. Daniel Murphy, situated in the middle of
SAN FRANCISCO -- The Washington Nationals again demonstrated their offensive depth and balance on Tuesday night, receiving contributions throughout the batting order to amass 14 hits and outclass the San Francisco Giants, 6-3.
Trea Turner and Jayson Werth, Washington's first two hitters, went 5-for-9. Daniel Murphy, situated in the middle of the order at the No. 5 spot, went 3-for-4. And the Nats' eighth and ninth hitters, Michael Taylor and starting pitcher Giovany Gonzalez, combined to drive in three runs. Gonzalez (4-1) thus helped himself as he ended a five-start winless streak.
Matt Albers and Koda Glover, who secured his seventh save, combined to give the Nationals 2 2/3 scoreless innings of relief with four strikeouts to seal the victory.
"It's always a nice thing to see when you have Matty Al and then Koda closing the game for you. That means you did your job," said Gonzalez, who allowed three runs in 6 1/3 innings. "You got those two guys coming out for you, you know you're looking at something in the positive side and you gave your team a chance to win."
The lone starter who didn't record a hit for the Nats was the one who leads the Majors in multiple offensive categories, Bryce Harper, who went 0-for-5 one day after his brawl with Giants reliever Hunter Strickland set both teams on edge. But tensions gradually disappeared. The umpires issued no pregame warnings, and none of the eight pitchers who entered the game threw anything close to a brushback pitch.
"They're a class team over there," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "I think they understood the whole situation. It's not who we are. They're trying to win ballgames just like us. It's a great thing that we put this behind us. It's a credit to them and the class they have."
Making his Giants debut, rookie outfielder Orlando Calixte rapped a pair of hits, including a two-run double in the second inning. Buster Posey went 3-for-4 and drove in a run. Otherwise, the Giants did little to support Jeff Samardzija (1-7), who lasted a season-low four innings.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
When it counts: Washington's Ryan Zimmerman struck out in three consecutive at-bats. But that unfortunate stretch followed Zimmerman's first plate appearance of the night -- a two-out, two-run double that drove in the Nats' first runs and helped them establish control. Zimmerman's double had an exit velocity of 107.9 mph, according to Statcast™, and was the third-hardest-hit ball off Samardzija this season.
"I liked it a lot," Nationals manager Dusty Baker said. "We were hoping to break that game open in the second inning and score a whole bunch of more runs."
Morris meets his match: Giants reliever Bryan Morris entered the game unscored upon in nine straight outings, a span of 10 2/3 innings. But he yielded consecutive singles in the fifth inning to Murphy, Anthony Rendon, Matt Wieters and Taylor and a bases-loaded walk to Werth, helping Washington settle the outcome with a three-run outburst.
Nationals:Max Scherzer takes the mound for Wednesday's series finale at 10:15 p.m. ET at AT&T Park. He is coming off his best outing of the year, a 13-strikeout performance over 8 2/3 innings against the Padres.
Giants:Player Page for Matt Cain, San Francisco's scheduled starter for Wednesday's 7:15 p.m. PT series finale, has not allowed a run in his last two appearances against the Nationals. Both were five-inning outings last season. Overall, he's 7-5 against them with a 3.30 ERA.
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Jamal Collier covers the Nationals for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier.
Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.