Star of the Series 5/4-5/6 (Bryce Harper)

Series Scores
Monday, May 4, 2015 Marlins 4 Nationals 6
Tuesday, May 5, 2015 Marlins 2 Nationals 1
Wednesday, May 6, 2015 Marlins 5 Nationals 7

Bryce Harper had 3 home runs and 5 RBIs on Wedneday. (Susan Walsh/AP)
Bryce Harper had 3 home runs and 5 RBIs on Wednesday. (Susan Walsh/AP)

The Washington Nationals were swept by the Miami Marlins when the teams last met in April and the Nationals limped out of Miami mired at bottom of the National League East standings with a 7-12 record.  The Nationals got revenge on Monday night at Nationals Park when they overcame a two-run deficit in the eighth inning.  Ian Desmond, who had not hit a home run since April 15 in Boston, hit a two-run home run to tie the game and Yunel Escobar had a clutch base hit that drove in two more runs to give the Nationals a 4-2 lead.  Tanner Roark preserved the 4-2 lead and earned his first career save.

The Nationals dropped the second game of the series 2-1, but the biggest news of the night was focused on Stephen Strasburg.  Strasburg left the game after the third inning because of “shoulder discomfort.”  He was able to play catch on Wednesday, but the Nationals have not made any announcements about whether he will make his next regularly scheduled start on Monday in Arizona.

The series went out with a bang on Wednesday afternoon in front of 31,417 fans at Nationals Park.  Bryce Harper hit three home runs and Max Scherzer had 10 strikeouts in a game the Nationals won 7-5.  The win was the team’s seventh in nine games and it delivered a third consecutive series win.  Here are the nominees for the 5/4-5/6 star of the series against the Marlins.

  1. Ian Desmond
  2. Yunel Escobar
  3. Bryce Harper

Ian Desmond had four hits in the final two games of the series against the New York Mets and he looked to continue to heat up on Monday night against the Marlins.  Desmond was 0-for-3, with two strikeouts, going into his at bat in the eighth inning with Ryan Zimmerman on first base and one out.  Desmond tied the game with a two-run home run into the batters’ eye in center field.  Desmond also had two more hits and scored two more runs in Wednesday’s game.  His defense has also recently improved as he completed his second consecutive series without making an error.

Yunel Escobar had five singles on Monday night.  His five hit night was complete with a game winning single in the eighth inning which scored Tyler Moore and Denard Span.  Escobar’s six hits this series puts him in a tie with Wilson Ramos for a team leading 29 hits.

Bryce Harper was 0-for-7 with four walks in his last five games before Wednesday afternoon’s clinic.  He made Tom Koehler look like his 2013 Home Run Derby pitcher with three tape-measure home runs.  Harper led off the second inning with a home run to left center field.  Harper’s sixth home run of the season bounced off the back wall of the visitor’s bullpen and it cut the Marlins lead in half in a 2-1 game.  Harper drove a fastball Koehler left over the outside part of the plate in the third inning into the upper deck in right field to score Ian Desmond.  Harper’s second home run of the game was outdone by his third home run of the game to the same location.  Statcast showed Harper’s third home run had an exit velocity of 108.6-mph and traveled 444.9 feet.  Harper had more to contribute on Wednesday afternoon.  He added another RBI on a ground out in the seventh inning for his fifth RBI of the game.  Harper leads the Nationals with 20 RBIs and 8 HRs.  Harper is tied for fourth in the National League in home runs and fifth in the National League in RBIs.  He leads the major leagues with 26 walks.

Star of the Series: Bryce Harper

Harper fell short of becoming the 17th player to hit four home runs in a game, but he still stole the show on Wednesday afternoon.  He showcased his power and became only the fourth player on the Nationals to hit three home runs in a game.

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