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Game 8 WPA: Wait ‘til Murph heats up. Washington Nationals beat St. Louis Cardinals 8-3 in second straight MLB tourney.

Another solid Gio outing, and Murphy keeps on hitting.

MLB: St. Louis Cardinals at Washington Nationals
“Ain’t no thang.” (Not an actual quote.)
Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Image courtesy Fangraphs.

(What do these graphs mean?)

  • Remember, he was good in April last season: Gio Gonzalez (+9.9%) gives us more grounds for cautious optimism, allowing a single run over seven innings pitched with 6 Ks and no walks.
  • It was a better strategy when he was hurt (or not hurt, or something) and the rest of the lineup was less fearsome: Bryce Harper (+6.4%) walks 3 times, setting up a pair of two-RBI hits and later hitting a double of his own.
  • Protection racket: Daniel Murphy (+29.4%) puts the Nats ahead with two outs in the 3rd with a bases-loaded, two-run single (+20.5%), following a Harper walk. He tacks on in the 5th by belted a two-run homer out to right (+9.7%), following another Harper walk.
  • Revenge of the projected-as-replacement-level-by-Doghouse: Jayson Werth (+10.2%) puts the Nats ahead for good with a solo shot in the to start the 4th (+12.7%). Matt Wieters (+9.2%) follows with a solo bomb of his out two batters later (+10.7%).

Tonight’s WPA brought to you by memories: