SAN DIEGO - The Nationals and Padres have played five innings at Petco Park, and Washington leads 2-1 after scoring a pair in the first inning. But as has been the case so many times for the Nationals this year, they’ve been unable to add on.
They’ve only got two hits since the first inning, both of them singles from Brian Bixler - who’s got his first multi-hit game since he was with the Pirates in 2009. And after both of those hits, Jayson Werth grounded out, including an inning-ending 4-6-3 double play in the fifth.
The Nationals have habitually tailed off in the middle innings; their four best scoring innings are the second, third, fourth and fifth, in that order, and their worst two are the sixth and seventh. They’ve benefited from another strong start from John Lannan, who’s allowed a run on three hits in the first five innings, and caught a break when replay overturned Ryan Ludwick’s fourth-inning homer. But their new-look lineup hasn’t stirred any new results on offense.