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Washington Nationals’ Andrew Stevenson playing good ‘ole country hardball...

The veteran outfielder continues solid play since being recalled from Fredericksburg last week …

Philadelphia Phillies v Washington Nationals - Game One Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images

WASHINGTON – There is no doubt that fans of the Nationals want to be back in the stands when the 2021 season begins.

And if those fans like country music, they may want to keep rooting for the resurgence of veteran outfielder Andrew Stevenson.

Stevenson, batting leadoff and playing right field here at Nationals Park on Tuesday, lined out in the first and then doubled and scored on a two-bagger by Trea Turner in the third as the Nationals beat the Philadelphia Phillies 5-1 in the first game of a doubleheader.

A native of Lafayette, Louisiana, the speedy outfielder pays homage to his Southern roots with his walkup songs at a mostly empty Nationals Park in this virus-plagued season.

One of the numbers on Tuesday was “Amarillo Sky,” which blared around the Navy Yard neighborhood on a crisp fall afternoon.

He was recalled from the alternate site in Virginia on Friday and now has a hit in his last six games and is batting .385 this month.

Stevenson is now hitting .286 with Washington this year and has an OPS of .829.

That comes after he hit just .158 as a rookie in 2017 in only 57 at-bats.

He hit .253 in 75 trips the next year then batted .367 last year in only 30 at-bats in the majors. He was been shuttling back and forth between the minors and majors for four years.

Stevenson was drafted in the second round out of LSU by the Nationals in 2015 and broke into the majors two years later.

He has seen time in the majors every year since then but only had 162 at-bats prior to this season.

“He is getting his work in on defense. He is getting his at-bats and competing at a high level,” Fairfax native Tommy Shields, the co-field director in player development, told Federal Baseball earlier this month when Stevenson was in Fredericksburg.

“He knows what type of player he is, which is line drives all over the field. He has a good eye, he is a professional. He continues to do what makes him a valuable member of our club.”

“I’ve seen Stevenson now for a couple of years. He’s a guy that grows on you, man. He plays the game hard,” manager Dave Martinez said last week.

“Stevenson will play right field against right-handed pitching, he’ll platoon with [Michael A. Taylor] for the rest of this year, and I just want to see him get some at bats over here.

“He deserves it. He worked really hard in Fredericksburg, kept in shape. Stevenson is a great guy, good teammate, was swinging the bat well. So I wanted to give him an opportunity.”

Stevenson was overshadowed Tuesday by starting pitcher Austin Voth, who went all seven innings to record his first complete game in the majors.

In the minors, Voth had just one complete game – six innings for Triple-A Syracuse in 2017 at Charlotte.

“This was big for me,” Voth said after the game. “Today was fun. I still have something to prove.” It was the 20th start of his MLB career and 23rd outing overall.