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Daniel Murphy lifts Nationals to walk off win over Braves

Daniel Murphy lifts Nationals to walk off win over Braves

WASHINGTON -- Daniel Murphy's one-out RBI single in the 10th inning capped the Washington Nationals' 5-4 comeback victory over the Atlanta Braves on Friday night.

Adrian Sanchez led off the 10th against Ian Krol (1-2) with his first major league hit and two batters later moved to third on Ryan Zimmerman's single. Murphy then lofted an opposite-field single over left fielder Matt Kemp's head to win it for Washington.

Matt Albers (5-1) induced Kemp's double play grounder to end the 10th to help the Nationals escape a two-on jam.

Washington extended its lead in the NL East to 9 1/2 games over Atlanta.

Trailing 4-1 and facing Braves closer Jim Johnson, the Nationals opened the ninth with a single by Bryce Harper and a walk to Zimmerman. Murphy's single to right scored a run, and Anthony Rendon then lofted an RBI single to right.

An out later and with Matt Wieters at bat, Atlanta manager Brian Snitker was ejected for arguing a checked swing. It was his third ejection of the season.

Wieters hit a sacrifice fly to score Zimmerman, and shortstop Wilmer Difo then singled in Murphy to tie it. It was Johnson's seventh blown save of the season.

Atlanta starter R.A. Dickey retired his first 10 hitters and took a no-hitter into the sixth before shortstop Stephen Drew broke it up with a leadoff double. The knuckleballer gave up a run and three hits while striking out seven in seven innings. In four starts since yielding eight runs in five innings on June 13 during a loss at Washington, he is 3-0 with a 1.00 ERA in 27 innings.

Washington's Max Scherzer set down the first nine batters he faced and struck out 10 over 7 2/3 innings while allowing four runs. It was the eighth time in nine starts and the 11th time this season Scherzer recorded 10 or more strikeouts, and he leads the NL with 173 strikeouts.

Freddie Freeman homered and drove in three runs for Atlanta. The solo shot in the seventh was the first homer since May 16 for Freeman, who returned from the disabled list Tuesday after missing 44 games with a fractured wrist.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Braves: IF/OF Danny Santana (bacterial infection) was placed on the 10-day DL and the team recalled IF/OF Jace Peterson from Triple-A Gwinnett. Santana was hitting .230 with two homers and 17 RBIs in 42 games with the Braves. Peterson returns to Atlanta three days after being optioned to Gwinnett.

Nationals: Washington activated OF Chris Heisey (ruptured right biceps) from the DL after missing 40 games. He is hitting .128 with a homer and three RBIs this season. He replaces OF Michael A. Taylor, who went on the 10-day DL with a right oblique strain. . The Nationals signed LHP Seth Romero, their first-round draft pick. The former University of Houston pitcher's deal includes a signing bonus of $2.8 million.

UP NEXT

Braves: RHP Julio Teheran (6-6, 5.14 ERA) seeks his first victory since allowing two runs in seven innings at Washington on June 14. He is 0-2 with a 6.48 ERA in three starts since that win.

Nationals: RHP Stephen Strasburg (9-2, 3.28 ERA) makes his final start before the All-Star break for Washington.

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With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

With Ross placed on 60-day DL, Nationals agree to 1-year deal with veteran reliever

WASHINGTON  -- The Washington Nationals say they have agreed to a one-year deal with 40-year-old reliever Joaquin Benoit.

The team announced the move Wednesday, along with placing pitcher Joe Ross on the 60-day disabled list as he recovers from Tommy John surgery in July.

The Nationals didn't release terms of the agreement, though a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press on Monday that it was for $1 million.

The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the deal wasn't official at the time.

MORE NATIONALS: FULL 2018 SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE

Benoit is a right-hander who first reached the big leagues in 2001. 

He has played for eight teams, finishing last year with Pittsburgh.

He has 764 career appearances, going 58-49 with a 3.83 ERA and 53 saves.

RELATED: 2018 MLB BETTING ODDS

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It's Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

It's Day 1 of spring training and Bryce Harper is already done taking questions regarding his future

So if you have not heard, Bryce Harper is going to be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2018 season.

All off-season talking heads, baseball aficionados, radio hosts, etc. were speculating on where the outfielder’s destination will be next year.

And we are still a year away from it actually happening.

RELATED: VEGAS SETS OVER/UNDERS FOR 2018 MLB SEASON

Reporting to spring training on Monday, Harper did not waste any time telling the media how his press conferences were going to play out this season.

“If guys do [ask], or talk anything about that, I will be walking right out the door.”

Entering his seventh season with the Washington Nationals, the 25-year-old is coming off the second-best season, statistically, of his career. The 2015 NL MVP has hit .285 in his career, with 150 home runs and 421 RBIs. Unquestionably he is the face of the Nationals’ organization, if not, the best player in the team’s history.

If he does end the season without a contract extension, he will join Rafael Palmeiro, Alex Rodriguez, Randy Johnson, and Barry Bonds as the top sought out free agents in MLB history.

One thing is for certain in terms of Harper’s free agency; Harper has given no inclination on where his landing spot will be.  The top three cities are of course his favorite childhood team, the New York Yankees; joining with one of his closest friends with the Chicago Cubs; or just staying with Washington.

Wherever he does land, it does appear that it will be the largest contract given to a free agent ever.

As for now we just wait and direct any of your calls to his agent Scott Boras.

READ ALSO: NATIONALS FULL SPRING TRAINING SCHEDULE