Nats exceeding expectations as Orioles come to D.C.

The Washington Nationals moved into third place in the NL East on Sunday, overcoming a 6-1 deficit to beat the Toronto Blue Jays, 11-8, taking the weekend series in the process. Eddie Rosario, who has been struggling mightily all season, blasted a two-run homer in the seventh inning to break an 8-all tie and put the Nats ahead to stay. It was Washington’s best-in-the-majors 12th come-from behind win this year.

“These guys never feel like they’re out of a game,” said manager Dave Martinez, “They don’t.”

Rosario’s homer was one of three the Nats belted on Sunday; Jesse Winker and Luis Garcia also went deep. Garcia enjoyed one of his best days ever at the plate, going 4 for 4 and driving in four runs. His .337 batting average leads the team.

Righting ancient wrongs

The Nats came into the Toronto series following a 5-2 road trip that included a four-game sweep of the last-place Marlins – particularly sweet because the Fish have owned the Nationals in recent seasons.

Tall order ahead

Speaking of teams that have owned the Nats of late, the Baltimore Orioles come to Washington for a two-game set starting on Tuesday. The O’s lead the AL East with a 23-11 record and have their two top starters, Corbin Burnes and Kyle Bradish, scheduled to take the Nats Park mound. Baltimore catcher Adley Rutschman’s .324 average ranks fourth in the AL, and nobody in baseball has more homers than Oriole shortstop Gunnar Henderson’s 10.

The Nats haven’t faced a tougher team than Baltimore this season, and the recent history isn’t encouraging. Washington has lost 10 of its last 11 games against the Orioles, including the last seven straight. But the Nationals have shown that they can compete with the best teams in baseball this year. That streak comes to an end this week!

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