Washington, DC – Adam LaRoche went 4-for-4 with two home runs and the Nationals pounded six home runs as a team en route to an 11-5 drubbing of the Chicago Cubs in the second installment of a four-game series on Tuesday.
Ian Desmond walloped a two-run homer and matched a career-high with four RBI, while Tyler Moore also hit a two-run long ball. Jesus Flores and Ryan Zimmerman all hit solo shots for the NL East-leading Nationals, who have won three straight. Jayson Werth added an RBI single among his four hits in the win.
"What a great win," Nationals manager Davey Johnson said. "It was fun to watch. We're in a pretty good place right now offensively."
Edwin Jackson (9-9) earned his second consecutive victory with 5 2/3 solid innings. He allowed four runs on seven hits and a walk to go with eight strikeouts.
Alfonso Soriano ripped a solo home run and drove in three for the Cubs, who have lost four in a row. Starlin Castro added a pair of RBI in the setback.
Chris Rusin (0-2), who was called up from Double-A Tennessee earlier on Tuesday, took the loss after allowing five runs on eight hits with a walk and a strikeout over an inning-plus of work.
Washington jumped on top in its first turn up as Desmond ripped a fastball from Rusin deep and over the wall in right-center field for a two-run shot, and his 20th long ball of the season.
The Nats added three more runs in the second inning to knock Rusin from the game. Flores began the frame with a towering homer to left-center field, while Jackson singled and Werth followed with a double to put runners on second and third. Desmond rocketed a double off the center field wall, scoring both runners for a 5-0 lead.
"I just couldn't keep the ball down," Rusin said. "When I missed my spots they capitalized, you have to give them credit. This is the big leagues and you can't miss your spots here."
Chicago got on the board in the fourth via an RBI single by Castro, but the Nats got the run right back in the home portion of the inning as LaRoche blasted a fastball from Rafael Dolis into the left-center field seats, pushing the Washington advantage to 6-1.
Following LaRoche's homer, Danny Espinosa doubled and Moore capped the inning with another long ball -- this one for two runs -- to extend the lead to a comfortable seven-run margin.
Chicago put together a two-out rally in the sixth to cut the deficit to four. Luis Valbuena singled and Anthony Rizzo walked before Soriano smoked one high off the center field wall for a two-run triple and Castro beat out an infield hit to score Soriano.
Zimmerman made it a five-run game when he led off the sixth with a solo shot and Werth singled home Bryce Harper in the seventh for a 10-4 Washington lead.
Soriano led off the eighth with a solo homer for the Cubs, but LaRoche finished off the rout with a solo bomb to right for his second home run of the game.
In addition to Rusin and Dolis. the Cubs also recalled catcher Anthony Recker from Tennessee as part of September roster expansions ... Six home runs established a franchise record for homers in a home game since the team relocated from Montreal in 2005 ... The Cubs fell to 40-26 when scoring at least four runs in a game ... Washington is 61-17 when scoring first this season ... Desmond also drove home four runs in his major league debut against Philadelphia on September 10, 2009 ...It was LaRoche's 19th career multi-homer game.