Strasburg sets strikeout mark (Nats win 3-1)

The Nationals hit six home runs versus Seattle on Friday in an 8-3 romp. It was the most home runs by any team at Safeco Field this season and the most by the Nationals since September 2012.

werth-gray-swing-sidebar.jpgThe Nationals have hit 36 home runs this month, most in the National League.

Make that 37. The Nationals hit their seventh homer against Mariners pitching in the last 27 outs.

Jayson Werth cranked a two-run shot in the first inning off of left-hander Roenis Elias and the Nationals lead 2-0. It was Werth’s 15th homer of the season.

Right-hander Stephen Strasburg had a 1-2-3 bottom of the first, which included Werth robbing Dustin Ackley of extra bases by running down a hot shot toward the gap in right-center. It was Strasburg’s first 1-2-3 first inning since Aug. 3 versus the Phillies.

The Nationals lead 2-0 after one in Seattle.

Update: Strasburg has four consecutive strikeouts starting with the end of third through the fourth frame. He is one strikeout away from matching Gio Gonzalez’s Nats record for punchouts in a season - 207 in 2012.

Update II: Anthony Rendon’s run-scoring double in the fifth has extended the Nationals’ lead to 3-0.

Update III: Strasburg set a new club record for strikeouts in a season with 208 after striking out Robinson Cano in the sixth. It was his sixth strikeout of the game.

Update IV: Strasburg’s night ended in the eighth on a solo home run off the bat of Ackley. But that shouldn’t dampen an otherwise stellar performance.

The Nats right-hander held the Mariners to one run on six hits while striking out eight and walking none in 7 2/3 innings.

He broke the Nats’ single-season strikeouts record and now has 210 on the season. Tonight marks the 15th time in 29 starts that Strasburg has fanned at least eight batters.

It also was a strong response following a poor outing where he allowed five runs in four innings on Sunday against the Giants.

Left-hander Matt Thornton came on in relief and struck out Cano to end the eighth. So the Nats still lead 3-1 and Strasburg is in line for his third straight win.

Update V: Rafael Soriano tossed a scoreless ninth for his 30th save of the season, closing out a 3-1 win for the Nats.

Strasburg improved to 11-10 as the Nats won their second straight to secure a series victory over Seattle after being swept by the Phillies.

Catcher Jose Lobaton led the offense with three hits and run scored. Washington never trailed after Werth’s two-run homer in the first.

The Nats moved back to 20 games over .500 at 77-57 and were able to extend their division lead to seven games after the Braves were blanked by the Marlins.

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