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Wire Taps: Trea Turner steals 40th base; Nationals try to avoid getting swept by Braves...

Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news before the start of tonight’s series finale with the Braves...

MLB: Atlanta Braves at Washington Nationals Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Trea Turner went 3 for 4 with two runs scored and a stolen base, his 40th of the season in 83 games, last night. With his 40th steal, Turner became, “... just the 2nd Nationals player with a 40-plus steal season (2005-pres.),” as Washington’s PR team noted on the Twitter, one shy of Alfonso Soriano’s modern franchise record of 41 set in 2006, when the veteran outfielder reached 41 in 159 games.

“He was on pace to lead this league in stolen bases,” Dusty Baker told reporters after the Nationals’ second straight loss to the Braves.

“Then he had that unforeseen broken wrist. We all know that Trea is player, and that he’s an impact player. When he’s out there, we feel better and the pitcher and the other team feels worse.”

Hopefully Turner’s good to go for the rest of the season now, so he can continue to cause other teams fits deep into the postseason... now for some links:

NATS BEAT:

Max Scherzer hits a wall, and Braves show little mercy in 8-2 win over Nats
"Dusty Baker has a reputation for pushing his starters deeper into games than other managers. He also has immense faith in Max Scherzer, and who could blame him?"

Nationals stick to plan, keep Max Scherzer in
"So it was with an eye toward the postseason that Scherzer pitched into the seventh inning and threw 116 pitches in an 8-2 loss to the Braves..."

Why the Nats let Scherzer throw 116 pitches in a Sept. loss
“Look, this is why these games are meaningful,” Scherzer said. “I know you guys keep throwing that word around. I needed to go out tonight and pitch deep into this ballgame. And I did.”

Washington Nationals didn't look interested in moving into top seed
"The Nats entered Tuesday having won 13 of their past 17 to move within 3½ games of the staggering Dodgers (who are 1-16 in their previous 17 entering Tuesday)."

Braves chase Max Scherzer; Matt Kemp hits slam
"Scherzer was pitching well until the seventh, when he appeared to run out of steam."

Jayson Werth returns to lineup for Washington Nationals
"Veteran second baseman Daniel Murphy, who ranks fourth in the National League with a .321 average, is out of the lineup Wednesday with a stiff neck."

Nationals injury updates: Bryce Harper progresses, Jayson Werth returns
"Harper is hitting off a tee and taking soft toss, according to Manager Dusty Baker, who did not elaborate on the intensity with which Harper is taking those swings."

Turner with 40th stolen base and three hits in loss, focuses on health
"He has stolen 40 bases in just 379 plate appearances this season. 130 games? Umm, no. Turner has played in 83 total games."

NATIONAL(S) BEAT:

MLB - Fantasy Baseball Daily Notes for Sept. 14
"The Nationals' lineup might appear imposing on paper, but Washington has been a bottom-five offense over the past month with a 81 wRC+ and 24 percent whiff rate, so Folty's matchup is better than it appears."

Don’t cheer the Dodgers’ demise just yet
"Stephen Strasburg’s been unhittable since coming off the disabled list. But the rest of the playoff rotation may be feeling the wear of mounting innings..."

Kemp and Braves slam Nats, Gohara gets first MLB win
"Kemp said Gohara 'did a great job. He has an electric arm. It’s hard to hit lefties throwing 97, 98 (mph)."

When will every MLB contender clinch a playoff spot?
"On Sunday afternoon, while wearing shirts, red shorts and goggles, the Washington Nationals clinched their fourth National League East title, and their second in a row."