After yet another loss and falling to a virtual tie with the Philadelphia Phillies to third place in National League East standings, Jayson Werth had some things to say. Werth, the oldest and one of the most veteran players on the team, hadn’t lost confidence in this team or resolve to drag themselves out of the standings. Even though the Nationals have tread water for two and half months in a season of sky high expectations, Werth had faith that his teammates wouldn’t let the situation spiral.

“I don’t know,” he said, leaning back in the rolling chair at his locker. “I guess we’re kind of all screwed up like that. Stuff doesn’t bother us. When you get to this level, play for this long, you’ve learned to get over stuff like that pretty quick. It’s just part of it. People that drown in it and people that take it home and allow it to eat at them and all that don’t usually last too long. They don’t stick around. That’s all part of being a big leaguer. You’ve just got to do it. You’ve got to show up tomorrow ready to eat somebody’s face.”

(Re-read the last line of his thoughts and, yes, he actually said that, but he also said that with a slight grin.)

Werth and Ian Desmond talked before Tuesday’s game about the Nationals’ lack of identity. The team is close and chemistry, according to Werth, is good. But the lack of winning has prevented the team forming their own 2013 identity. The offense, in particular, ranks second to last in runs scored per game (3.47), third to last in average (.232) and second to last in on-base percentage (.291).

“Me and Desi talked before the game on that,” he said. “I think he’s onto something there. Maybe we’ve kind of lacked an identity as a team. But you know, I think as you start winning games and you start playing and you go on a roll or you rally or whatever it is you do, you kind of create an identity.

“We just haven’t hit stride as far as that goes. How many times have we rallied this year? How many winning streaks have we gone on? We just haven’t hit stride yet. Hopefully soon. It’s not for lack of effort or for lack of caring. Guys in here work hard and want to win and play hard. It just hasn’t lined up for us yet. There’s a lot of season left. We just need to keep battling. If we can stay around or above .500 going into the break, the second half’s crazy. But we’ve got to stay close.”


Washington bats scuffle again in another road loss, falling to the Phillies, 4-2, writes Adam Kilgore.


Are the Nationals playing tense?

Denard Span’s bruised foot improves, returns to lineup

Drew Storen’s shrinking late-inning role

Nationals’ midseason minor league all-stars

As Danny Espinosa rehabs, Anthony Rendon hits


Charlottes 7, Syracuse 6: Danny Rosenbaum allowed five runs, three earned, on eight hits, walked one and struck out four over seven innings. Mark Lowe allowed one run on three hits and walked one in 1/3 of an inning of relief. Jeremy Accardo allowed one run over 2/3 of an inning and has a 5.21 ERA. Eury Perez went 2 for 6 with a homer. On rehab, Danny Espinosa went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts. Tyler Moore hit his second home run and went 2 for 4. Zach Walters hit his 15th homer.

Harrisburg was off.

Potomac was off.

Hagerstown was off.

Batavia 10, Auburn 2: Casey Selsor allowed two runs on four hits over five innings. Wilmer Difo went 2 for 3, Jean Carlos Valdez smacked a double and Austin Chubb drove in a run.