Freddie Freeman had one of the best seasons of his accomplished career with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2022 and is in position to do even more this season.
Freeman will take an 18-game hitting streak into a meeting with the visiting Washington Nationals on Tuesday in the middle game of a three-game series.
Freeman's two-run double on Monday helped spark a six-run fifth inning that powered the Dodgers to a 6-1 victory over the Nationals. J.D. Martinez added a three-run home run in the frame as the Dodgers won in their return from a lackluster, 4-6 road trip.
"I had doubts through four (innings), but we found a way to show some life and get a win," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said about his team, which returned from the trip that ended with an 11-10 defeat against the Tampa Bay Rays on Sunday. "When you're playing teams that are young and with nothing to lose, it gets tough sometimes, but it was good to come away with a win."
The victory was the Dodgers' 12th in their past 13 home games, and Freeman matched the third-longest hitting streak of his career. He last had a hit in 18 consecutive games during his MVP season of 2020 with the Atlanta Braves. He produced a 20-game streak in 2011 and a 30-game stretch in 2016.
Much of Los Angeles' home success has come thanks to Freeman's offensive contributions. He has hit safely in each of the Dodgers' past 11 home games dating back to April 30.
The Dodgers will send right-hander Tony Gonsolin (2-1, 1.82 ERA) to the mound on Tuesday. In two career appearances (one start) against the Nationals, Gonsolin is 1-1 with a 5.00 ERA. The loss was Gonsolin's only one in all of 2022, as he gave up four runs on six hits over six innings on July 25.
Washington will counter with rookie right-hander Jake Irvin (1-2, 5.32), who will be making his sixth career start. Irvin made his major league debut May 3 against the Chicago Cubs and earned his first victory one start later against the San Francisco Giants -- his lone road outing.
Irvin is coming off a four-inning start against the San Diego Padres on Thursday, when he gave up two runs on two hits with four walks. He has yet to face the Dodgers.
The Nationals have won two of their past three series, but their loss on Monday was the fifth time they dropped a series opener in their past six tries.
CJ Abrams drove in the only Washington run with a second-inning single, but his fifth-inning fielding error left him unable to turn a double play. Instead, the Dodgers took advantage and erupted for six unearned runs, a rally that included Freeman's two-run double and Martinez's three-run home run.
"Definitely, the margin of error is very small," Nationals manager Dave Martinez said. "They're going to come at you. They've got some good hitters. We knew that. And that guy that pitched today (Dodgers rookie Bobby Miller) did really well. We couldn't get anything going offensively."
The Dodgers have defeated the Nationals 11 times in the past 14 games between the teams going back to the start of 2021.
--Field Level Media