The Nationals shoot for a three-game sweep of the Arizona Diamondbacks in their first-ever series at RFK Stadium.
The Nationals beat the Diamondbacks 9-3 on Saturday for their fourth straight victory. They posted a series-opening 5-3 win Thursday in the first regular-season game in Washington since 1971.
The Nationals pulled into first place in the National League East, one game ahead of the New York Mets and Atlanta Braves. Last year, in their final season as the Montreal Expos, the team was 10-25 before it managed a four-game winning streak from May 14-18.
“This is a different team, I’m telling you,” Washington manager Frank Robinson said before Saturday’s game. “A different approach, different enthusiasm, a different combination of talent.”
Castilla went 3-for-3 with four RBIs for the second straight game and has reached base in all eight of his plate appearances at RFK. Castilla, who led the NL with 131 RBIs for the Colorado Rockies last season, has two homers, a triple, two doubles, and a single in six at-bats in Washington, giving him a 2.667 slugging percentage at home.
Castilla, who was acquired as a free agent in the offseason, was a single shy of the cycle Thursday and a triple shy on Saturday.
Jose Vidro drove in three runs Saturday for the Nationals, who sent 11 men to the plate during a seven-run seventh inning.
Luis Gonzalez hit a three-run homer for the Diamondbacks, who had won four in a row heading into the series.
Arizona will send Brad Halsey to the mound for the series finale.
Halsey was acquired in the offseason deal that sent Randy Johnson to the New York Yankees, and beat out Michael Gosling for the fifth spot in Arizona’s rotation. He was impressive in his first start of the season Monday, allowing just five hits in six innings of a 2-0 win over the Colorado Rockies.