Kemp, Braves slam Nats; Gohara records first win
WASHINGTON -- -- Matt Kemp hit a grand slam to cap a six-run seventh inning, and Luiz Gohara earned his first major league win as the Atlanta Braves cruised past the Washington Nationals 8-2 on Wednesday.
Lane Adams was 3-for-4 and scored twice for Atlanta.
In a 2-2 game, Washington starter Max Scherzer walked the first three batters of the seventh and then gave up a two-run single to Dansby Swanson.
After an intentional walk to Freddie Freeman loaded the bases, reliever Brandon Kintzler took over, and his first pitch was ripped over the fence in left by Kemp for an 8-2 bulge.
It was the 19th homer of the year for Kemp and his seventh career grand slam.
Scherzer (14-6) had the worst outing of the season, giving up seven runs and seven hits in six-plus innings. He finished with six walks and seven strikeouts. His ERA rose from 2.32 to 2.59 as his Cy Young Award candidacy took a hit.
Gohara (1-1) yielded two runs (one earned) and six hits in six innings with six strikeouts and no walks. Dan Winkler, A.J. Minter and Lucas Sims each pitched a scoreless inning to close out the win.
The Braves took a 2-1 lead in the sixth as Kemp walked and scored on a two-out double to right by Tyler Flowers (two hits).
Washington tied the game at 2-2 in the last of the sixth as Wilmer Difo had an RBI single to score Trea Turner, who was 3-for-4. The hit by Turner in the sixth snapped a streak of 11 batters retired in a row by Gohara.
Nick Markakis also had two hits for the Braves. Atlanta (66-78) is 6-3 at Nationals Park this year while Washington (88-57) lost its second straight since clinching the National League East title Sunday.
Anthony Rendon had an RBI double in the first inning to give the Nationals a 1-0 lead. His 37th double of the year scored Turner, who led off with an infield single that was upheld after a video challenge. Turner then stole his 40th base.
The Braves missed a scoring chance when Adams hit a ball off the fence in left but had to settle for a single as he tripped coming around first to lead off the third. Adams, who hit a walk-off homer Sunday to seal the division for the Nationals, was stranded.
Adams got a measure of revenge when he tripled off the glove of left fielder Howie Kendrick in the fifth with one out. Adams then scored on a two-out single by Ozzie Albies, who extended his hitting streak to 11 games while tying the contest at 1-1.
Gohara went four innings and gave up six runs in his first major league start against the Texas Rangers on Sept. 6.
NOTES: Washington RHP Tanner Roark (12-9, 4.48 ERA) will face fellow a Illinois native, Braves RHP Mike Foltynewicz (10-12, 4.74), on Thursday. ... Braves C Kurt Suzuki played for the Nationals for parts of the 2012 and 2013 seasons. ... Washington manager Dusty Baker was drafted by the Braves in the 26th round in 1967. ... Braves OF Ender Inciarte did not play due to a sore thumb. ... Nationals OF Jayson Werth (sore left shoulder) was back in the starting lineup after missing the last five games. He was 0-for-16 this month before hitting a double in the second inning and finishing 1-for-3.