WASHINGTON — The Nationals are 6-4 through 10 games, a respectable but not incredible record to open the season considering a mostly clean bill of health so far.
A few hiccups along the way have marred an otherwise excellent season-opening stretch (hi Jeremy Guthrie!), and there will always be days such as Wednesday, when the Nationals and St. Louis Cardinals each managed eight hits, but the Cardinals converted them into six runs while the Nationals managed just a single run. But that was the only game so far this season in which Washington has scored fewer than three runs, compared to four games so far in which Washington has scored six or more.
It’s been a balanced effort, to be sure. Of the team’s eight primary position players, all but third baseman Anthony Rendon (9) and Trea Turner (5) have played in each of the Nationals’ first 10 games. The six who have played in all 10 have been nothing short of outstanding so far. Look at this:
Daniel Murphy: .444/.457/.711, 7 runs, 10 RBIs, 6 doubles, 2 home runs, 4 strikeouts, 1 walk
Ryan Zimmerman: .378/.425/.730, 7 runs, 6 RBIs, 4 doubles, 3 home runs, 11 strikeouts, 2 walks
Matt Wieters: .355/.459/.581, 4 runs, 5 RBIs, 4 doubles, 1 home run, 4 strikeouts, 5 walks
Bryce Harper: .333/.478/.556, 10 runs, 8 RBIs, 2 doubles, 2 home runs, 9 strikeouts, 10 walks
Jayson Werth: .306/.375/.556, 6 runs, 7 RBIs, 0 doubles, 3 home runs, 13 strikeouts, 4 walks
Adam Eaton: .297/.426/.486, 9 runs, 5 RBIs, 4 doubles, 1 home run, 10 strikeouts, 9 walks
Rendon and Turner have struggled so far — they’re hitting .171/.216/.200 and .158/.158/.211, respectively — but the latter has stolen three bases in just five games, and the former just had his best game of the season on Friday, going 2 for 5 with a game-tying, two-out RBI double.
Make no mistake, we’re only a small fraction of the way into the season. But the Nationals have often struggled in recent years to string together more than a couple of runs at a time, and they appear to now have a lineup that can be counted on from 1-8. They have a blend of power and contact hitting, they have a good mix of lefties and righties, and if they continue getting contributions from aging veterans Zimmerman and Werth, the offense could quickly become one of the most feared in baseball.