WASHINGTON -- Although he has enjoyed seeing so many of his former teammates, Matt Wieters would rather get past the fact that the Orioles are his former team, and instead focus on the fact that they had beaten the Nationals the past two nights. That was his biggest takeaway after his two-run walk-off single in the ninth inning completed a 7-6 comeback victory for the Nats on Wednesday night at Nationals Park.
The victory halted a season-high three-game losing streak for the Nats and end the O's winning streak at six games.
"Other than the fact that they kicked our butts there, and it was time to come back and try to get a win," Wieters said about any extra pleasure in beating Baltimore, for which he spent the first eight seasons of his career. "That's the thing, the competition is what I enjoy. So anytime they beat you, you want to come back and beat them. That's why we all play the game."
Washington trailed by two in the ninth inning, and by four runs in the eighth inning, before completing a comeback.
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Michael Taylor hit a two-run homer in the eighth and Jayson Werth began the ninth with a solo homer off Brad Brach after an 11-pitch at-bat. Bryce Harper followed up Werth's homer with a double, and after Ryan Zimmerman grounded out back to the pitcher, Daniel Murphy was intentionally walked and Anthony Rendon singled to load the bases and set the stage for Wieters, who drove a sharp grounder past the glove of Chris Davis at first base to drive home the winning runs.
"Werth put a really good at-bat on him," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "[Brach] made some good pitches, [and Werth] finally got a ball he could do something with. A lot of good hitters over there. Just couldn't quite get those last two outs. We kinda got done to us what we did to them. It's part of the game."
"Our guys are pretty excited," Nationals manager Dusty Baker said. "That was probably the best win of the year for us."
Gif: Dusty celebrates walk-off
Baltimore scored five runs against right-hander Stephen Strasburg, highlighted by a three-run second inning and a long two-run homer from Mark Trumbo in the fifth inning. Trumbo, whose blast was projected at 461 feet by Statcast™, has homered in two of the first three games of the home-and-home four-game series, and he hit a walk-off single in Tuesday's win.
Taylor collected three RBIs on the day, including a two-run homer in the eighth off Alec Asher.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Brach's struggles continue: After allowing just 18 runs all of last season, Brach has given up eight in his last eight games. The righty, who is getting the lion's share of closing opportunities with closer Zach Britton on the disabled list, suffered his second blown save on Wednesday.
"I think just not throwing fastballs down in the zone," said Brach, who has allowed eight earned runs over his last eight games, with two blown saves. "Earlier in the year, I was kind of getting away with some pitches that maybe [had] a little bit more life on my fastball, and now just kind of leaving it up and just not executing when I need to.
"And falling behind, walking guys. I think that was the big key to [Werth], I fell behind there and had to come back in the zone and he got to see everything that I threw. Unfortunately, when you have 11-pitch at-bats against guys like him, he's going to take advantage of it."
Werth is becoming known for working at-bats deep into counts and then homering, a reputation he developed when he hit a walk-off homer during the 13th pitch of an at-bat in Game 4 of the 2012 National League Division Series against the Cardinals.
"I think on some level, as the at-bat goes on, I feel more comfortable," Werth said. "Obviously, kind of get a chance to see what he's got and you get in rhythm with him maybe a little bit, but I don't know."
Miley's escape act: The Nationals' best scoring chance against Miley came in the fifth inning, when the top of the order loaded the bases with no outs. But Washington managed just one run, as Miley struck out Zimmerman, got Murphy to bounce into an RBI fielder's choice and induced Rendon to fly out to right field on the 119th and final pitch of his night.
"I was just hoping that based loaded, nobody out didn't come back to haunt us," Baker said. "Because you hope to get a crooked number when that happens, but we only got one."
While he limited the damage, Miley chided himself for the short start after the game.
"Actually, the five innings [means more than two runs allowed]. I've got to get deeper in ballgames," he said. "Our bullpen picks us up all the time. They're picking us up the last two games. I need to do a better job, get them out on some [fewer] pitches."
"No one is going to feel sorry for you. Tomorrow they're going to expect you to get outs. What I've got to do is have a short memory, forget about it, go out there tomorrow and get the outs." -- Brach
Orioles: The Orioles will finish off the Beltways Series on Thursday at 7:05 p.m. ET with Dylan Bundy on the mound looking for his eighth consecutive quality start. The righty has become the O's ace in his first full season in a big league rotation and enters the game 5-1 with a 2.17 ERA.
Nationals:A.J. Cole (1-0, 1.50 ERA) will make his second start of the 2017 season. In his first start, Cole allowed some hard contact but limited the Phillies to just one run in six innings.
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