When the Washington Nationals have had any success at the plate lately, they've generally been able to win.
Arrieta has delivered a pair of outstanding outings at Wrigley Field since being traded from Baltimore, and he'll try to continue that trend Wednesday night against the Nationals.
The Cubs got Arrieta (1-0, 0.69 ERA) from the Orioles last month in a four-player deal that sent Scott Feldman to Baltimore, and the early returns on the right-hander - who was once a top prospect - have been good.
Arrieta held Milwaukee to two hits and a run as he debuted for the Cubs (54-71) on July 30 while starting one game of a doubleheader. He was back in the minors until Friday, when he held the Cardinals to two hits and struck out seven over seven innings of a 7-0 win at Wrigley.
"That's what I'm capable of," Arrieta said. "It's just a matter commanding the ball and limiting my walks. That's really what's gotten me in the past was too many free passes, letting guys get away when I'm in favorable counts and pretty much keeping my foot on the gas and staying on the attack.
"I've made a conscious effort to get better at certain things and it's starting to show."
Arrieta had a 5.46 ERA in parts of four seasons with Baltimore, the second-highest in the majors of any pitcher to throw at least 350 innings since he initially came up in 2010.
"For me, there's no question that this change of scenery and this trade was huge for me in my career - not only for me, but for the Cubs as well," Arrieta said. "I couldn't be more excited to be here and I'm thankful to the front office for wanting me and bringing me into this organization."
Washington (61-64) had lost four of five before Tuesday's 4-2 victory, when it finally got some hits with runners in scoring position. The Nationals had been 7 for 49 (.143) in such situations over their previous five games before going 4 for 14 on Tuesday.
Washington has won the last seven times it's scored at least four runs and lost its last four when putting up three or fewer.
Bryce Harper is 0 for 11 with runners in scoring position over his last nine games, but he's been getting on base lately. He's 6 for 12 with two doubles and two walks in his last three games after getting two hits and scoring a run Tuesday.
The All-Star outfielder's recent surge may continue since he's 10 for 23 (.435) with five extra-base hits - two homers - and seven runs in seven career meetings with the Cubs.
Harper is also 4 for 5 with a double off Arrieta.
Ohlendorf suffered right shoulder inflammation during a relief outing in a loss at Detroit on July 31.
The right-hander allowed four runs and 13 hits in seven innings over a pair of starts during a rehab stint in the minors.
He's 1-0 with a 1.38 ERA in two starts with the Nationals this year, and is 2-0 with a 2.75 ERA in six career starts versus the Cubs. However, he has a 5.06 ERA in three visits to Wrigley Field.
|August 17, 2013||Taylor Jordan||15-Day DL||Lower back strain|
|August 13, 2013||Wilson Ramos||Day-to-Day||Left game - strained left hamstring|
|August 11, 2013||Jayson Werth||Day-to-Day||Right knee|
|August 01, 2013||Ross Ohlendorf||15-Day DL||Right shoulder inflammation|
|August 01, 2013||Ross Ohlendorf||15-Day DL||Right shoulder inflammation|
|July 24, 2013||Ian Desmond||Day-to-Day||Blister|
|August 08, 2013||Matt Guerrier||60-Day DL||Right elbow soreness|
|August 08, 2013||Thomas Neal||60-Day DL||Dislocated right shoulder|
|August 07, 2013||Thomas Neal||Day-to-Day||Dislocated right shoulder|
|August 07, 2013||Dioner Navarro||Day-to-Day||Right ankle contusion|
|August 03, 2013||Luis Valbuena||15-Day DL||Right oblique strain|
|July 15, 2013||Brian Bogusevic||15-Day DL||Left hamstring strain|
CHICAGO (AP) -- The Washington Nationals ' offense came through for manager Davey Johnson on Wednesday night.
Jayson Werth and Scott Hairston hit three-run homers to lead the Nationals to an 11-6 win over the Chicago Cubs .
Washington had scored six runs over its past three games, but on Wednesday had its highest output since scoring 14 against the Mets on July 28.
Werth's three-run homer in the third inning off Jake Arrieta gave the Nationals a 6-1 lead and was his eighth since the All-Star break.
Hairston, who was traded by the Cubs on July 8, was pinch-hitting for Tanner Roark and hit his off James Russell (1-4) with two outs in the seventh to give the Nationals a 9-6 lead after they had given up a 6-1 lead.
That offense was a welcome sight for Johnson.
"Eleven runs, I think it's Christmas," Johnson said.
The 11 runs helped Washington overcome Anthony Rizzo 's two homers and the Cubs' five-run fifth when they had seven hits to tie the game at 6.
Ross Ohlendorf was activated off the disabled list before Wednesday's game and allowed four runs and six hits and 4 1-3 innings.
Ohlendorf had been on the DL since Aug. 1 with right shoulder inflammation and was making only his third start of the season and didn't get through the fifth, getting replaced one batter after Rizzo's second homer cut the Washington lead to 6-3.
"Glad to get back out there. I felt good," Ohlendorf said. "Wish I had pitched deeper into the game for us but our offense did an awesome job."
Werth has been on a roll. He went 1 for 3 and has a .452 average in August, and has hit safely in 12 of his past 13 games.
The Nationals broke the game open on Werth's drive in the third, which came after Ryan Zimmerman singled and Bryce Harper walked. Werth hit a 3-0 pitch into the seats in left for his 18th homer of the season and a 6-1 lead.
Arrieta had been solid in two starts for the Cubs since coming from Baltimore on July 2 as part of the trade for Scott Feldman , allowing one earned run in 13 innings, but struggled Wednesday.
He went four innings and gave up six runs, including three in both the second and third innings.
"I didn't do my job tonight," Arrieta said. "I had enough weapons to pitch deep into the game and get our team a win, and I wasn't able to do that tonight."
The Cubs rallied in the fifth for five runs and seven hits, including six straight, to tie the game and chase Ohlendorf.
Rizzo hit a towering drive into the right-field bleachers for his second homer of the night, cutting the Washington lead to 6-3.
Starlin Castro reached on a fielder's choice before Rizzo's homer, which gave him his fourth multi-homer game of his career and the second of August, after hitting two against the Dodgers on Aug. 1.
Ohlendorf allowed Junior Lake to single and was replaced by Roark (3-0), who gave up run-scoring singles to Donnie Murphy and Cole Gillespie , before Welington Castillo 's sacrifice fly to center tied the game.
Roark was charged with two runs in the fifth, but pitched 1 2-3 innings for the win.
"We out-hit them (14-11), but obviously two three-run homers, you ain't gonna win too many games with two three-run homers in one game," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said.
The second three-run homer didn't come until the seventh, and it came from somebody familiar to Sveum and the Cubs.
With two outs in the seventh, Hairston lined a 1-2 pitch into the seats for his three-run homer and ninth of the season.
Russell had gotten the first two outs of the inning before Harper doubled and Werth was intentionally walked.
Since coming to Washington, Hairston had struggled, hitting .200 with no home runs in 19 games.
For at least one at-bat, those struggles ended against his former team.
"It feels really good," Hairston said. "In that situation I wanted to capitalize. There's runners on and early in that at-bat my weight was shifting forward and I just wanted to make sure I stayed back and give myself the best opportunity to get a hit."
NOTES: Washington SS Ian Desmond 's back tightened up during batting practice, but he stayed in the game until the fifth when he was replaced by Anthony Rendon as part of a double switch. "He wasn't his usual self," Johnson said. ... Johnson said "there have been discussions" about giving INF Danny Espinosa a September call-up. Espinosa was sent to Triple-A Syracuse on a rehab assignment June 12 and optioned there on June 19 and is hitting .202 in 64 games. He hit .158 in 44 games for Washington. . To make room for Ohlendorf, the Nationals optioned LHP Ian Krol to Triple-A Syracuse. ... At 24, Rizzo became the second-youngest Cubs left-handed hitter to hit 20 home runs. Billy Williams has the mark, set in 1961. ... Thursday's pitching matchup is Washington's Stephen Strasburg (6-9, 2.93 ERA) against Chicago's Travis Wood (7-10, 3.13).