Signed this offseason away from the rival New York Mets, second baseman Daniel Murphy wasted no time in making an instant impact for the Nationals.
Murphy reached base in each of his first three at-bats in Monday's win over the Braves. He drew two walks and clubbed his first homer of the season off Julio Teheran to center field.
Murphy also came through with a clutch, go-ahead RBI double in the top of the 10th to give the Nats the edge they needed to win their first game of the season.
"A nice way to start the year," Murphy said.
Murphy's new teammates know him well from his seven years playing for the Mets and were not surprised to see him quickly make his presence felt.
"I've faced him enough to know that he can do that," starter Max Scherzer said. "That just speaks volumes. First game of the year."
"He's got that big league mentality," right fielder Bryce Harper said. "He knows what he wants to do up there, he's got his plan what he wants to do and it's a lot of fun to watch especially that he's in a Nationals uniform now, that's huge for us."
"Psh, quite a debut," shortstop Danny Espinosa said. "What else is there to say? I mean, he's a special hitter, a very smart hitter. Very prepared. It's fun to pick his brain about hitting. He's very prepared. Like I said, just a good ballplayer."
Murphy's extra innings double made him just the second player in Nationals history to produce the game-winning hit in his debut with the team. Ian Desmond was the other on Sept. 10 of 2009.
Murphy's home run brought back memories of his historic tear in the 2015 playoffs. Murphy broke out with seven home runs in 14 games as the Mets advanced all the way to the World Series.
That streak came after Murphy posted a career-high 14 homers in 120 games during the regular season. He has never been known as a home run hitter, but an made to Murphy's swing last season may have resulted in a late-career power surge.
Murphy also homered in the Nats' final exhibition game against the Twins in Washington on Saturday. The theory of Murphy's improving power looks pretty good so far.