And the Nationals’ offense rapped out 14 hits.
It was their second-highest hit total of the season — and the first time they’d walked more than twice in a game since May 25. Seven of their nine starters had at least one hit.
Led by three from Ian Desmond, whose third was a two-run single laced to left, two from Rendon, who drove in three, and the first two hits of Kobernus’ career, the Nationals had their most productive game in weeks.
There was more work to be done. Another game to be played before they could bid adieu to the Twins and, they hoped, take a possible .500 record into a nine-game road trip that begins in Colorado on Tuesday.
But it was a start. They hoped, perhaps at long last, that it was the start.
“I’ll have [a meeting] every day if we get 14 hits and seven runs,” Johnson said. “To me, confidence comes by attacking, being aggressive. Sometimes, when we don’t swing the bats, we look like we’re a little passive. I liked our approach today. We were more in attack mode. I like that.”