WASHINGTON — After three straight walk-offs, the Washington Nationals went for a cakewalk instead, scoring six runs in the third inning Tuesday night as they ran their winning streak to eight games with an 8-1 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Stephen Strasburg (10-10) allowed one run and three hits over a season-high eight innings, and Asdrubal Cabrera’s bases-clearing double blew the game open to give the Nationals an overdue breather in what is now their longest winning streak since August 2012.
Success had come with suspense for the Nats: four consecutive one-run games, including the last three decided by the final at-bat, and the last two in the 11th inning.
Strasburg struck out four to give him an NL-leading 198 for the season, besting his previous single-season high of 197 in 2012 — the year he was shut down early after returning from elbow surgery. He did just what the Nationals needed him to do: eat up innings to give an overtaxed bullpen some rest.
The Nationals sent seven batters to the plate in the third before the Diamondbacks could record an out. Rookie Chase Anderson (7-5) faced six of them, allowing five singles and a walk before he was pulled in the shortest outing of his young career.
Jayson Werth’s broken-bat single up the middle scored the first Nationals run, and Ian Desmond’s single brought in two more. After Bryce Harper’s single loaded the bases, Anderson was pulled for Eury De La Rosa, who gave up Cabrera’s drive that took one bounce before hitting the wall in right-center.
Desmond also had a two-run single in the sixth to finish with four RBIs. Werth had three hits
David Peralta’s first-inning home run accounted for all the scoring for the Diamondbacks, who have lost four straight.
Ender Inciarte grounded out in the ninth for the Diamondbacks to finish an 0-for-4 night, ending his team rookie record hitting streak at 18 games.
Nationals: OF Nate McLouth will have surgery Thursday for a torn labrum in his right shoulder and is done for the year. He hit .173 with one home run and seven RBIs in 79 games in his first season in Washington.
Arizona’s Trevor Cahill (3-8, 4.68 ERA) faces Tanner Roark (12-7, 2.93) on Wednesday night in the third game of the four-game set.
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