The Washington Nationals enter Saturday's contest with the Cincinnati Reds winners of four games in a row and are seeking the best franchise start in 31 years. The Nationals defeated the Reds in extra innings for the second consecutive night Friday evening at Nats Park to push their record to 6-2 this season. It is the franchise's best start since 2001, when the Nats were known as the Montreal Expos. The last time the Washington franchise began a season 7-2 was 1981, when the Montreal Expos went on to make the only postseason appearance in the team's 43-year history.
Jayson Werth was the hero Friday night, driving in Danny Espinosa for the 2-1 Washington win in 13 innings, on Friday the 13th. Werth, who struggled mightily in his first year in Washington, is batting .303 to start the season with four runs batted in. It was his first game-ending hit as a member of the Nationals.
The Nationals will send Edwin Jackson to the hill on Saturday. Jackson lost his first start with the team 4-3 to the New York Mets on Monday, failing to hold an early three-run lead. He will be opposed by Homer Bailey, who allowed four earned runs in 5 2/3 innings in his season opener.
Washington outfielder Rick Ankiel was activated from the disabled list Friday, and is expected to start in center field on Saturday.
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