WASHINGTON -- A day after squandering a lead entering the seventh inning, the Royals did it again.
This time, though, Kansas City managed to rally back.
"It was big for us, especially after yesterday kind of giving up the lead (in an 8-4 loss to Cleveland) and giving it up again today," left fielder Alex Gordon said. "I thought we could have put our heads down and took a loss, but give us credit for putting together a good inning and making something happen."
The Nationals, who had won four straight and eight of their last nine, left 19 men on base -- including the bases loaded in the sixth, seventh and 10th innings.
"I don't think I've ever seen that before," Gordon said. "Gave them chances and they didn't get runs in. Good for us for stepping up and making the pitches count when they needed. Give our pitchers the credit for that."
Jonny Venters (0-1), the Nationals' fifth reliever, loaded the bases with no outs before striking out Whit Merrifield. However, Mondesi poked a single to left past a drawn-in infield to score a run. Gordon then hit a grounder to first baseman Ryan Zimmerman, whose wild throw home allowed two runs to score.
Zimmerman got his 1,000th career RBI with a double in the seventh to pull Washington within 4-2. He added another off Kansas City closer Ian Kennedy in the ninth, then scored on Brian Dozier's single. The Nationals had two on with one out, but couldn't push across the winning run.
"Couldn't get hits in a big moment," Washington manager Dave Martinez said.
Trea Turner hit his fifth career leadoff home run off Kansas City starter Brad Keller, extending Washington's franchise-record of games with a homer to 19. It was the only run the Nationals managed off Keller, who allowed six hits and five walks in 5 2/3 innings.
Kansas City scored two runs in both the third and the fifth off Washington starter Austin Voth, who lasted 4 1/3 innings in his third start of the season.
Nationals: OF Victor Robles was out of the lineup for the first time since June 23 as part of a routine day off, but entered as a pinch hitter in the seventh and was hit by the first pitch he saw. It was the rookie's 16th hit by pitch, tied for most in the National League, and came two days after he was hit in the finger while attempting a bunt. "When he tries to bunt, he really sticks his head over home plate and we're trying to get him not to do that," manager Dave Martinez said.
RENDON OUT OF ALL-STAR GAME
Washington 3B Anthony Rendon was replaced on the NL All-Star team by Los Angeles' Max Muncy. Rendon, who has started 53 consecutive games since coming off the injured list May 7, is dealing with tightness in his left hamstring and quadriceps.
"I've been playing with it for the last two, three weeks, so it's no concern," Rendon said. "I know how to ease up, and I've played through injuries before. It's nothing significant, but be smart about it because we still have the whole next half of the season to worry about."
BACK AT LAST
Kansas City is making only its second trip to Washington since the Nationals arrived in 2005, and its first since 2010. Only Oakland, which made its lone trip in 2005, has played fewer series in Washington against the Nationals than the Royals.
Royals: RHP Glenn Sparkman (2-4, 5.09 ERA) faces Washington for the first time as the three-game series continues Saturday.
Nationals: RHP Max Scherzer (8-5, 2.43), who was 6-0 with a 1.00 ERA in six June starts, is scheduled to come off the paternity list and make his final appearance before the All-Star break.
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