Cubs-Nationals season series recap

Nationals won season series 4-3

June 26-29, Nationals Park, Washington

Series tied 2-2

Game 1: Cubs 5, Nationals 4

The Nationals sent nine to the plate and scored four runs in the ninth, but Wade Davis, the eighth Cubs pitcher of the game, struck out Ryan Zimmerman — then leading the NL in batting average — to end the threat. Batting leadoff for the first time, Willson Contreras led off the game with a home run, the Cubs' only run until they scored one in the eighth and three in the ninth.

Game 2: Nationals 6, Cubs 1

A meeting of the previous two NL Cy Young winners — Jake Arrieta and Max Scherzer — turned out to be about a catcher. The Cubs' Miguel Montero ripped Arrieta after the Nationals stole seven bases — four by leadoff man Trea Turner. Arrieta failed to last five innings for the third time in four starts. The next day, the Cubs designated Montero for assignment.

Game 3: Nationals 8, Cubs 4

The successful Anthony Rizzo-batting-leadoff experiment came to an end. John Lackey allowed eight runs and nine hits in 51/3 innings and the Cubs fell to 39-39 after Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg struck out 13 in seven innings. Kris Bryant was helped off the field after spraining his right ankle landing awkwardly on third base after catching a popup.

Game 4: Cubs 5, Nationals 4

Board member Todd Ricketts' words during a pregame trip to the White House, where the team presented President Donald Trump with a Cubs jersey, proved prophetic. Ricketts was caught on camera telling Trump the teams would meet in the playoffs and that the Nationals would "crumble," prompting Trump to say, "Probably will." On the field, Jon Jay's two-run double highlighted a three-run Cubs ninth.

Aug. 4-6, Wrigley Field, Chicago

Nationals won series 2-1

Game 1: Nationals 4, Cubs 2

Making his third start after returning from the disabled list, Kyle Hendricks allowed five hits — two of which were Daniel Murphy home runs — in seven innings. The only offense the Cubs could muster was a Javier Baez two-run homer. The Nationals increased their NL East lead to 13 games with the victory.

Game 2: Cubs 7, Nationals 4

Former Cub Edwin Jackson was blasted for four runs in the first, including a two-run homer from Alex Avila — his first hit since joining the team. The victory ended the Cubs' three-game losing streak and was aided by Willson Contreras' two-run home run in the sixth that helped John Lackey earn his fourth victory in as many starts.

Game 3: Nationals 9, Cubs 4

Matt Wieters' grand slam in the eighth broke a 4-4 tie and rendered useless Willson Contreras' two home runs and Kyle Schwarber's long ball. Earlier in the inning, Carl Edwards Jr. hit Anthony Rendon to force in the tying run. In the eighth, Jason Heyward's double marked his 1,000th career hit.

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