Adam Wainwright did not last three innings on Friday night as the Washington Nationals jumped all over the Cardinals' veteran for six early runs. Adam LaRoche opened the scoring during the Nationals first time through the order, singling home Jayson Werth and Bryce Harper for the 2-0 lead. But the offense would really bust out in the third, batting around for a four-run rally that chased Wainwright and was just a few feet shy of being an eight-run rally.
The four-run rally came without a quick strike, as the Nationals strung together five hits and walk to push the lead to 6-0. Ian Desmond, Danny Espinosa, Kurt Suzuki and Werth each drove in a run on singles as the Nats went station-to-station. Wainwright managed to get only eight outs in the appearance, and threw more than 40 pitches in the third.
Trevor Rosenthal came on in relief and nearly charged Wainwright with three more runs. Ryan Zimmerman, who was batting for the second time in the inning, stepped into the box with the bases loaded and swung at the first pitch from Rosenthal. It looked like a grand slam off the bat but the ball did not carry, falling into the glove of left fielder Matt Holliday with his back against the wall.
Gio Gonzalez now enters the middle innings with a comfortable six-run cushion. After their roughest stretch of the season, Davey Johnson's club is looking to regain some momentum as the calendar turns to September. They're now in a good position to take the first two games of the their four-game set against the Cards.