Nationals held players-only meeting after being swept by Red Sox

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On Wednesday, the Nationals suffered a 3-0 loss to the Red Sox, who completed a series sweep and handed the Nats their fifth consecutive loss. The 42-43 Nats have also lost 17 of their last 22 games. The preseason favorites to win the NL East are now seven games behind the Braves and 5.5 behind the second-place Phillies.

Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post reports that a handful of veterans on the Nats’ roster called a players-only meeting. Max Scherzer made a speech. Outfielder Adam Eaton said, “I think anytime Max holds the meeting or holds court, there’s going to be some yelling. … In baseball, you don’t have that type of intensity all the time, so it’s a little different. I think guys gravitate towards that. I think everybody has a kind of intensity bone in their body, and sometimes things need to be said in that fashion.”

The Nationals’ schedule going forward looks a lot better, though. They open a four-game series with the Marlins tonight, then will also play games against the Pirates, Mets, and another four-game set with the Marlins. August will feature games against the Mets, Reds, and Marlins.

Jeremy Hellickson will get the start tonight against the Marlins in an attempt to stop the Nationals’ skid and turn things around.