Hey, I said I'd talk about them again if the Nats reached .500 and what do you know, the Nats reached .500. Even stuck their heads above water for a minute. Any way here were the standings Before the 5 game winning streak.
Nats trail ATL for NL East by 16 games
Nats trail CIN for WC2 by 10.5 games
Nats trail ATL for NL East by 13 games
Nats trail CIN for WC2 by 8.5 games
Progress! The Nats played well (5-1) and the Braves (2-4) and Reds (3-3) not as well. But again you see the hole that has been dug. If the Nats played at the same pace for the rest of the season, and the Braves and Reds played at the same pace for the rest of the season the Nats would catch both teams on the very last day of the year, give or take a game. Can the Reds go 16-13 or worse? Definitely. Can the Braves go 12-20 or worse? Sure, why not. It happens. Can the Nats go 26-6? Ummmm, ummmm, ummmmm... what can I make you say that will make you feel better?
The Reds will play the Cardinals in 7 of the next 10 games (COL in between). If one team can dominate the other, that's ground the Nats could make up. Then the Reds play the Dodgers before the schedule slackens up.
The Nats play an EASY 19 games. Nothing but NL East teams. Hahahahahaha BUT TRUE! AND SAD! So they should be able to play well. 15-3 well? Maybe not, but they can't be too far off of that. They can't find themselves going back on the road without making up a couple more games.
The Nats need a dominant stretch to follow that 5-1 going. Up now is three vs the Marlins, three vs the Mets. 5-1 is the Goal. 4-2 won't cut it, as it likely falls below the catch-up pace that we've already determined is kind of crazy. Nats are allowed one slip up.
Keep your head down, keep winning and go ahead and ignore the D-backs (still ahead of the Nats in the WC race) because if the Nats are somehow going to catch the Reds, they are going to be playing well enough to make the D-backs moot.