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Nationals' leadoff man Ben Revere gets rolling: Nats' "Igniter" has a big day in Miami

Washington Nationals' leadoff man Ben Revere jumpstarted the offense in the series finale in Miami. Dusty Baker talked after the game about the impact Revere can have when things are going right for the veteran outfielder.

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Ben Revere was 4 for 41 after returning from the DL heading into the Washington Nationals' road trip to New York and Miami, and 1 for 9 in the first two games against the Mets, but a 2 for 5 night in the series finale in Citi Field gave Nats' skipper Dusty Baker reason to hope the 28-year-old center fielder and leadoff man was starting to heat up.

Revere injured his right oblique in the first game of the year with Washington, after the veteran outfielder was acquired from Toronto this winter along with a Player to be Named Later in exchange for reliever Drew Storen and cash.

"We tell Ben as he goes, we go. And so, it's great to see him getting on, but you know he's going to get on sooner or later..." -Dusty Baker on Nationals' leadoff man Ben Revere

"Well, [Revere's] walk-up song is 'Ignition', and that's what he is, he's our igniter," Baker said.

"We tell Ben as he goes, we go. And so, it's great to see him getting on, but you know he's going to get on sooner or later, but like I told you guys, he was operating from behind.

"He got hurt in the very first at bat of the season and then he missed a month.

"And so he's still operating from behind, but it feels good to see him get some hits and feel good about himself, because you know this guy, he's been hitting his whole life."

Revere came to the Nationals with a career .295/.328/.348 line, coming off a .306/.342/.377, 1.9 fWAR season with the Blue Jays and Philadelphia Phillies.

He went 2 for 4 in Saturday night's loss and sparked the Nats' offense in Sunday's series finale in Miami, singling to start the first, stealing second, moving up on a groundout and scoring on a sac fly for a 1-0 lead in the first.

Revere singled again in the third, moved to second on a groundout and stole third base before scoring on an infield single to make it 2-0.

"Ben Revere, our igniter, had a big day," Baker said after the 8-2 win.

"The first two runs were actually him. He made it easy on Harp, getting to third in the first inning, and that makes it easy, you don't have to get a clean hit, just a sacrifice fly, which he did."

Revere's third hit of the night was a two-run single to right that put the Nationals up 6-0. Baker said he was happy to see the outfielder get going like they hoped he would when he was acquired from the Jays.

"We knew -- he's the same Ben that we traded for," Baker said. "It's just that when you get hurt in the first game of the season and then you're operating from behind. He was a month -- and then he came back he was hitting the ball well with nothing to show for it."

"He's the same Ben that we traded for, it's just that when you get hurt in the first game of the season... then you're operating from behind." -Dusty Baker on Ben Revere returning to form

Baker considered starting Michael A. Taylor on Sunday with Marlins' lefty Adam Conley on the mound, but went with Revere since Conley started the day with a .208/.289/.313 line against vs right-handers this year and a .367/.441/.533 line against vs lefties.

"I thought about playing Michael Taylor, but the guy had a reverse split on the other side, he was tougher on righties than lefties and Ben came out right away and got us on the board, so I'm sure his confidence is a lot higher now than it was before, cause he was wondering what he had to do to get hits, but like I was telling everybody, he just had to play and get his timing and get his confidence back that he wasn't hurt anymore.

"That's the hardest thing about being hurt is that you're always fearful that you might hurt it again, but it looks like he's off and rolling and hopefully he'll be hot in the New York series."

We talked about Max Scherzer's outing vs the Marlins, Ben Revere's big day and more on the latest edition of Nats Nightly: