There isn't that much to say. The weekend was almost a loser for the Nats. As a good team playing another good team the Nats should take 2 of 3 at home. They did, but they almost didn't. Weeks doesn't get caught stealing, Braun catches a little bit more of that ball...
But that's sports. There's a lot of wins that you could have lost and a lot of losses you could have won. No reason to dwell on it. The Nats did what they needed and now move on to what should be a relatively easy stretch of away games, Colorado, Cincy, and Miami. You'd love to see the Nats shift gears and run over these teams with a 7-2, 6-3 stretch. But 5-4 will do. They may lose a game in the standings to the Braves who are finishing out their last easy stretch of games for 3 weeks, but you'd expect them to make it up in August.
The most interesting thing from the weekend for me is Tanner Roark's game. Prior to the 13th Roark had taken a noticeable turn south. His outings were short, he was giving up a lot of hits, and it seemed like only providence was keeping him from having a terrible blow-up game. A 1.500 WHIP should show worse than a 3.68 ERA. But this looks to be "that year" for Roark and things didn't go as bad as they should have. Now his last two outings have been much better.
While there are a lot of things it could be, rest seems the most likely reason for the turn around. He had been pitching every 5th game all-season and from May 16th through June 27th he pitched on the 5th calendar day (4 days of rest) for 6 out of 8 starts. While Roark had always been a starter, he's never racked up a season close to 200IP, which is what he was pacing. The most innings he had pitched in a season since starting in the minors was 158, and that was last year. It's not crazy to think he was tiring of the pace, the effort, and the constant major league goal of getting deep into games. Then, just when he needed it, two days off in a short time frame (thanks to the Cubs DH) gave him six days between starts. He didn't do great that game but it set the stage. He'd next be schedule to pitch on Wed the 9th, but after a rainout took away Fister's start, the Nats decided to push Fister, skip Roark, and keep the rest of the rotation on track. Roark wouldn't pitch again until the 13th. That's eight days of rest for Roark. Then the All-Star break intervened and while the Nats threw Roark in early in part to give ZNN a longer rest, it was still five days of rest, another day longer than he might sit than during a long stretch of uninterrupted games.
The end result is that when Roark next takes the mound, with another day off in between now and then, will have pitched 5 times in 29 days. If you were keeping on a strict schedule you'd make your 5th start on Day 21. Granted it's rare that you have 21 days without a break, but more a than a week longer than expected is a lot more rest than you'd usually luck into.
If it is rest the question will be what happens in mid August. The Nats will go from July 25th through August 10th without a scheduled day off thanks to the Oriole make-up. Roark would be pencilled in for that first game and then pitch 4 straight games on normal rest, the last one being a potentially huge one in Atlanta. Will the arm, then around 140 IP be tired again? Or is this time off in mid July enough to recharge his arm for the season? Was a tired arm even the issue? A lot can happen between now and then - rainouts, injuries, etc. but it's something to keep an eye on.