Nationals Snatch Victory as Werth’s Streak Ends

ATLANTA — Clint Robinson, headed for a return to backup duty, made the most of another fill-in start.

Robinson hit a tiebreaking single with two outs in the ninth and the Washington Nationals recovered after giving up a three-run lead to beat the Atlanta Braves 7-6 on Friday night.

Robinson’s single to left field off Jim Johnson (2-6) drove in pinch-runner Pedro Severino from second base.

“He certainly did come through,” said Nationals manager Dusty Baker of Robinson. “At first they tried to give it to us, and then he tried to get it back.”

The Nationals led 6-3 in the eighth before the Braves took advantage of throwing errors by shortstop Danny Espinosa and third baseman Anthony Rendon to score three runs. Freddie Freeman’s two-run double off Koda Glover (1-0) tied it.

Robinson had two hits and two walks as he started at first base, the spot expected to be manned by Ryan Zimmerman when he comes off the disabled list on Saturday.

Robinson’s single in the ninth gave Glover his first win though he also was charged with a blown save.

“That’s definitely not the way you want to get it,” Glover said of the win.

The NL East-leading Nationals improved to 10-1 against the last-place Braves this season. Washington has won 24 of 30 games in the rivalry since the start of the 2015 season.

Mark Melancon pitched the ninth for his 35th save. A review overturned an out call on Dansby Swanson’s grounder to Espinosa for his second hit of the game with one out. Melancon then struck out Jace Peterson and Ender Inciarte’s grounder to first ended the game.

“It’s a good game, but I got a little older,” Baker said.

Inciarte had two of Atlanta’s four hits against Tanner Roark, including a two-run homer in the sixth. Nick Markakis added a homer to deep right field in the seventh, knocking Roark out of the game.

Julio Teheran allowed three runs on six hits and three walks in five innings in his return from the 15-day disabled list with a right lat strain.

“I felt pretty good,” Teheran said. “I felt normal, like the way I felt at the beginning of the year.”

Teheran is 0-6 in 13 home starts this season.

STREAK ENDS

Jayson Werth was 0 for 5 with three strikeouts, ending his Nationals-record streak of reaching base in 46 consecutive games. The streak began on June 20. Werth tied Rusty Staub for the longest streak in Nationals/Expos franchise history.

“The more important thing is that we won the game,” Werth said. “… It’s not the most glamorous of streaks anyway.”

GREATEST CATCH

Nationals center fielder Ben Revere made a leaping catch, reaching over the top of the wall, to take a home run away from Freeman in the fourth. Revere crashed to the warning track, holding his glove hand up with the ball as Freeman stared in disbelief near second base and Roark celebrated on the mound.

“Unbelievable,” Roark said. “The greatest catch I’ve ever seen.”

MINORS MOVE

The Nationals acquired LHP Sean Burnett from the Twins for cash considerations. Burnett was assigned to Triple-A Syracuse. The 33-year-old Burnett has pitched in the majors with the Pirates, Nationals — from 2009-12 — and Angels. He last appeared in the majors with the Angels in 2014.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Nationals: Zimmerman (bruised left wrist) and C Jose Lobaton (left elbow tendinitis) arrived in Atlanta and are expected to come off the DL on Saturday.

Braves: LHP Eric O’Flaherty, placed on the 15-day DL with left elbow neuritis, will be examined to see if surgery is necessary. O’Flaherty, 31, has a 6.91 ERA in 39 games — double his career 3.24 mark entering the season. “I feel for him,” said manager Brian Snitker. “He just can’t do what he’s capable of.”

UP NEXT

Nationals: RHP Max Scherzer (12-7, 2.95) lasted only four innings in his last start at Colorado, his shortest of the season. Before that start, he had lasted at least seven innings in six straight starts.

Braves: Rookie RHP Tyrell Jenkins (2-3, 4.89) allowed seven runs in 4 2/3 innings in a 9-1 loss to the Nationals in his last start on Sunday. It ended a streak of three straight strong starts in which he allowed a combined two runs and earned two wins.

 

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(© Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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