Washington's loss, coupled with Atlanta's 3-2 win over San Francisco, shaved the Nationals' lead in the NL East to 3.5 games. Washington and Atlanta begin a four-game series at Nationals Park Friday night.
Gio Gonzalez was chased after 3.1 innings. He allowed six runs on six hits and three walks, while striking out only two. Craig Stammen's day in relief of Gonzalez started just as roughly, as he allowed an RBI single to the first batter he faced, Ruben Tejada, which made the score 6-1. Two batters later, David Wright hit his second home run of the afternoon to make the score 9-1.
Nationals manager Davey Johnson pulled Ryan Zimmerman, Adam LaRoche, and Bryce Harper in the middle innings, but Washington still scored a run in the sixth, two runs in the eighth, and another in the ninth to make the final score more respectable.
Drew Storen made his season debut for the Nationals and pitched a perfect ninth inning, retiring the side on just nine pitches.