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Hitting lowlight: The opportunities certainly were there early on. The Nationals put their first two men on base in their first three innings, yet somehow didn't score once. They went an astounding 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position, three out of the outs on strikeouts and another on a popped-up bunt. They got a couple more chances later but only managed to cash in during the top of the seventh when Jayson Werth singled home Anthony Rendon. With a chance to add the tying run right then, they ran themselves out of the inning. Adam LaRoche struck out and Werth was thrown out trying to steal second, killing the rally on a day when the Nationals couldn't deliver in clutch situations.
Pitching highlight: Gonzalez knew what was needed of him today: Innings, lots of them. The way things went in the bottom of the first, it looked like that might be a problem for the left-hander. He gave up two quick runs on three hits, a walk and a stolen base. But Gonzalez battled back in impressive fashion, tossing six scoreless innings after that, striking out nine batters in the process. He finished on 120 pitches, the second-highest total of his career. It wasn't enough to put him in line for the win, but Gonzalez earned his keep on this afternoon and allowed the Nationals to head to Chicago with a fresh bullpen.
Key stat: The Nationals haven't scored a run off Craig Kimbrel in 10 innings this season, or in their last 13 innings against the Atlanta closer, dating back to July 2012.
Up next: The Nationals head north to Chicago for the second leg of this 10-game road trip. They'll open their four-game series at historic Wrigley Field at 8:05 p.m. Monday when Jordan Zimmermann faces Jeff Samardzija.