Bryce Harper went 0-for-2 with a pair of strikeouts as the Braves beat the Nationals 5-3 in the first game of instructional league from Viera, Florida.
It was the first live pitching the team had seen in 20 days and the Nationals did have the winning run at the plate in the late going.
The Nationals are at Houston tomorrow in Game 2 of the instructional league schedule. A.J. Cole will pitch one inning in that game. The Nats are throwing nine pitchers in each game, one for each inning.