Washington Nationals (62-52) at Atlanta Braves (59-56), 7:10 p.m. (ET)

08/08/2014 10:39 AM

08/09/2014 10:41 AM

(SportsNetwork.com) - Aaron Harang tries to stretch his unbeaten string to nine starts tonight when he leads the Atlanta Braves against the Washington Nationals in the middle test of a three-game series.

Harang is 4-0 over his last eight appearances and hasn't lost since June 18 against Philadelphia. The right-hander doesn't have a decision in each of his last four starts, all Atlanta defeats. Over 10 career starts against the Nationals, he's 2-4 with a 3.72 ERA.

Tanner Roark had a four-start winning streak snapped Monday against Baltimore. The righty tries to bounce back tonight against a team he beat on June 22 by limiting Atlanta to four hits and a run in 5 1/3 innings. He's 2-0 with a 2.35 ERA in five games (three starts) against the Braves.

Last night, the Braves jumped all over Stephen Strasburg early and then hung on for dear life to snap their eight-game slide.

Freddie Freeman, Justin Upton and B.J. Upton all hit two-run homers against the hard-throwing right-hander in the first two innings as the Braves topped the Nationals, 7-6.

Ervin Santana (11-6) allowed four runs on four hits and two walks for the Braves, who moved within 3 1/2 games of the Nationals for first place in the NL East. Tommy La Stella hit a solo shot in the victory.

"We came out tonight after having an off day, had time to ease the mind and rest and come out and win a ballgame," Justin Upton said.

Strasburg (8-10) struck out nine, but was charged with seven runs on seven hits and two walks over five frames for Washington, which had won four of its last six games coming in.

Anthony Rendon smacked a three-run shot and Wilson Ramos added a solo blast in defeat.

"It's already in the past, worry about tomorrow now," Rendon said of the loss. "We've got two more games to play here so that's what we're looking forward to."

Atlanta led 7-0 through the first five innings, but Washington got four runs back in the sixth and two more in the seventh.

The Braves lead the season series, 8-3 and have won seven of the last eight matchups at Turner Field.

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