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Nationals come back from 9-0 deficit against Marlins

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Update (9:19 PM ET): Credit to the Nationals — they battled back. It’s 10-9 after six innings. They hung up a four-spot in the fifth and added five more in the sixth. Trea Turner hit a go-ahead grand slam. Maybe that players-only meeting helped after all.

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Wednesday’s players-only meeting in the Nationals’ clubhouse apparently didn’t do the trick. Through four innings of Thursday night’s series opener at home against the Marlins, the Nationals are getting blown out 9-1.

Starter Jeremy Hellickson has given up all nine runs, eight earned, on nine hits and a walk with two strikeouts. Martin Prado knocked in a run in the top of the first thanks to a fielding error by third baseman Anthony Rendon. In the second, J.T. Realmuto hit a two-run single and Justin Bour followed up with an RBI single. A short while later, Martin Prado clanked a three-run home run off the foul pole down the left field line. Bour added a two-run homer in the fourth.

Trea Turner put the Nationals on the board in the bottom of the fourth with a solo home run off of Pablo Lopez, but the Nats will need a lot more than that to get back into the game.

If the Nats drop Thursday’s game, they’ll have lost their fourth game in a row and their 18th in their last 23 games. The first-place Braves are currently leading the Brewers and the Phillies have the night off. The Nationals entered play Thursday seven games behind the Braves and 5.5 behind the Phillies.

If you had been told in mid-April that, in July, Gabe Kapler would be the most successful of the three rookie managers in the National League, you likely would have been very skeptical. Kapler’s Phillies are 47-37. Mickey Callaway’s Mets are 34-49. And Dave Martinez’s 42-43 Nationals are sinking quickly.

Red Sox end Astros’ 10-game winning streak

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The Red Sox salvaged the final game of their three-game home series against the Astros, winning 4-3 on Sunday afternoon. In doing so, they ended the Astros’ 10-game winning streak.

Xander Bogaerts struck the decisive blow, knocking in a run with a double in the seventh inning to break a 3-3 tie. Michael Chavis also hit another homer — his eighth of the season — while Mookie Betts collected three hits and scored three runs to raise his OPS to .899.

The Astros last lost on May 7 against the Royals, the second game of a three-game series. The Astros won the final game of that set, then swept the Rangers in a four-game series, the Tigers in three, and won the first two games against the Red Sox. It’s their second 10-game winning streak of the season, as they won 10 striaght between April 5-16, sweeping the Athletics, Yankees, and Mariners before losing the second of two games against the A’s in Oakland.

At 31-16, the Astros are slightly behind the Twins — in progress as of this writing — for the best winning percentage in the majors. The Red Sox, meanwhile, have made up some ground after ending April 13-17. They’re now 24-22, good for third place in the AL East.