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Washington Nationals’ lineup for the 2nd of 3 with the Atlanta Braves in D.C.

Davey Martinez’s club looks to stop their five-game losing streak in the second game of three with the Braves this weekend...

Atlanta Braves v Washington Nationals Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images

Davey Martinez’s club has lost 28 of their last 38 games after a 19-9 month of June that for a moment convinced the Washington Nationals they might be able to compete this season.

It hasn’t gone well since then, of course, and it’s gotten worse since the fire sale at the July 30th trade deadline, with the Nats losing five straight now and 10 of the last 12.

Last night it was a 4-2 loss to the Atlanta Braves, which saw Nationals’ pitchers give up four solo home runs, three off starter Josiah Gray and one off reliever Andres Machado, while on the offensive end, Martinez’s team went just 3 for 13 with runners in scoring position and a total of nine runners left on base.

They had their opportunities though, with the Nationals scoring two runs in the bottom of the first, but they came up empty the rest of the way as the Braves rallied to tie it and then took the lead.

“We had one inning where [Victor Robles], who swung the bat well today, I thought, hits a bullet up the middle, hits the guy on the shoe,” Martinez said.

“[Alcides Escobar] comes up and lines out, a diving catch by the shortstop. We need a couple of those balls to fall in for us and things will turn around.

“We’ve been playing well, and like I said, I can’t complain about the way these guys are going out and playing.

“They’re playing hard, they really are. I’m seeing a lot of positives, and that’s a good thing.

“We got to get one hit, one double play, one thing to go our way in a game and things will turn around.”

Things haven’t been going their way, of course, but Martinez said the same thing about the team’s effort since the deadline before the game that he reiterated after it.

He likes the fight.

“These guys are playing really hard, and I’m proud of the way they’re playing, now we just got to finish, we’ve got to finish the games.

“We’ve been in almost every game since the change, and like I said, they’re been playing hard.”

Will the Nationals snap their five-game losing streak tonight and even things up in the three-game set with their NL East rivals?