Adam Dunn homered twice and drove in five runs as the Washington Nationals put a dent in the Atlanta Braves’ playoff hopes with a 8-3 victory on Friday.
Jordan Zimmerman pitched five strong innings and Willie Harris raced for an inside-the-park homer for the Nationals, who have won four straight.
The Braves entered the night with a one-half game lead in the National League wild card race and looked like they were in good shape with their ace on the mound and the last place team in the division in the other dugout. But Dunn rocked Tim Hudson (16-9) with a solo homer in the second and a two-run shot in the third to give him 37 on the season and Washington a 3-0 lead.
Zimmermann (1-2) took care of the lead, surrendering one run on three hits while striking out five. The 24-year-old right-hander, who is on a strict watch as he makes his way back after Tommy John surgery, was lifted after 83 pitches.
The Nationals ended Hudson’s night with a three-run sixth inning, capped by Dunn’s two-run single.
Hudson was charged with all six runs on seven hits in 5 2/3 innings while issuing six walks for the Braves, who for the moment fell into a tie with the San Diego Padres in the wild card race. The Padres play later on Friday.