WASHINGTON (AP) -- Bulldozed by Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg the previous two games, the San Diego Padres took extra batting practice -- against Washington starter Joe Ross.
Ryan Schimpf hit a two-run homer and the Padres broke loose, beating the Nationals 5-3 Sunday to avoid a three-game sweep.
The last-place Padres had only one run and six hits with 31 strikeouts in losing games started by Scherzer and Strasburg to begin the series. San Diego bounced back by matching its season high with 14 hits, with 12 off Ross (2-1).
"You come back and you try and put good at-bats," Padres manager Andy Green said. "I thought we did that better. You walk away from a road trip and you're 3-3 and you're facing the first place team in the NL East. That's not a bad road trip."
NL home run leader Bryce Harper was among four starters out of the lineup for Washington. The game was delayed 1 hour, 20 minutes by rain.
Four relievers, including Kirby Yates (1-0), pitched 4 2-3 hitless innings following starter Jhoulys Chacin's latest bumpy road appearance. Brandon Maurer worked the ninth for his sixth save.
Chase d'Arnaud had a two-run single and double for the Padres. Franchy Cordero singled in the third for his first major league hit and later doubled.
Daniel Murphy, Jayson Werth and Matt Wieters also did not start for the Nationals. All three entered as pinch hitters, but were retired. Washington opens a nine-game, 10-day road trip Monday afternoon in San Francisco.
Adam Lind drove in two runs. His RBI double in the fifth off Chacin pulled Washington closer at 5-3.
Chacin surrendered three runs on eight hits in 4 2-3 innings. He also had two singles and an RBI.
Ross, who allowed five in four innings plus three batters in the fifth, certainly had two tough acts to follow. Strasburg struck out a career-high 15 in Saturday's 3-0 win after Scherzer fanned 13 in Friday's 5-1 series-opening victory.
"I think there was a little more focus today honestly," Hunter Renfroe said.
Renfroe was one of five Padres with two hits.
"I think that some people got off their plan with Strasburg and Scherzer and obviously those pitchers are really good, so they can get you off your plan really fast," Renfroe said.
Schimpf hit his 13th homer, a two-run drive in the first.
"I felt like I was rushing a little bit," Ross said. "I felt like some pitches were there, some pitches I didn't give enough time. They were swinging today."
Padres: RHP Carter Capps (Tommy John surgery) remains on track to face hitters this week, Green said.
Nationals: Reliever Blake Treinen had a bruised foot after being hit by a comebacker. … Harper and the other three starters sat for rest, said Chris Speier postgame. Speier served as acting manager with Dusty Baker away this weekend to attend his son Darren's high school graduation in California. Murphy sat out the first two games due to illness.
Washington went 1 for 11 with runners in scoring position. Michael A. Taylor, who homered in each of the first two games this series, went 0 for 4 with three strikeouts and left six men on base.
"We had some opportunities to score some runs, but we left some men on base early," Speier said.
Padres: RHP Jarred Cosart (0-1, 4.50 ERA) faces the Cubs at home on Monday.
Nationals: RHP Tanner Roark (4-2, 4.32) opens a three-game road series against Giants LHP Matt Moore (2-5, 5.28).