Anthony Rendon hit an early three-run homer and Gio Gonzalez threw 7 2/3 shutout innings as the Washington Nationals defeated the Baltimore Orioles 6-0 on Monday afternoon at Camden Yards.
Washington has won four straight games and six of its last seven. The Nationals swept the Marlins in a three-game series over the weekend in Miami.
The Orioles have dropped their last three games as the team’s offense just can’t seem to get going on a consistent basis.
They could not do much against Gonzalez (6-2). The left-hander beat Baltimore for the first time since 2009 when pitching with Oakland — he’d lost his last six decisions against the Orioles.
Gonzalez scattered six hits in his 7 2/3 innings of work. He struck out three, walked two and got some help from his defense, which turned three double plays behind him.
Rendon gave Gonzalez all the offense he needed in the third inning when Trea Turner singled with two outs and Bryce Harper walked.
Rendon followed with a three-run homer to left on a 1-1 pitch from Alex Cobb (1-7). The Washington third baseman sent a line drive that just made it into the seats in left field and gave the Nationals a 3-0 lead.
Home runs have been a problem for Cobb this season. Those three runs were all he allowed in this start as the right-hander gave up five hits in seven innings.
But Cobb now has given up nine homers in 46 1/3 innings already this season, which has caused some of his early-season problems.
The Nationals broke it open in the eighth against reliever Richard Bleier. Matt Adams, Michael A. Taylor and Wilmer Difo all banged out RBI singles that gave Washington three more runs and a 6-0 lead, chasing the usually effective Bleier. The left-hander allowed three runs on five hits in just two-thirds of an inning.
This is the first of two series this season between the Orioles and Nationals, whose ballparks are about 45 minutes apart. The teams play two more games in this series and then meet in another three-game series in Washington June 19-21.
—Field Level Media