- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 31, 2016

PHILADELPHIA — Daniel Murphy hit one of four Washington home runs, Joe Ross allowed three hits in seven innings and the Nationals beat the Philadelphia Phillies 5-1 Tuesday night for their third straight win.

NL MVP Bryce Harper missed the game, a day after he bruised his right knee when hit by a pitch.

Philadelphia lost its season-high fifth straight game and has scored just nine runs during the skid. At 26-26, the Phillies are at .500 for the first time since a 10-10 start.

Murphy broke a 1-1 tie in the sixth with a two-out solo homer off Aaron Nola (4-4) and added an infield single in the eighth. He hit .416 in May (47 for 113) with seven homers and 23 RBI, tying the franchise record for hits in a month, shared by Al Oliver (August 1982) and Marquis Grissom (June 1994) of the Montreal Expos. He finished the month with a 10-game hitting streak.

Jayson Werth, Danny Espinosa and Stephen Drew also homered for Washington.

Ross (5-4) struck out five and walked two against a team that began the night with a .234 batting average that ranked 24th among the 30 big league teams and had scored 163 runs, more than only Atlanta. Felipe Rivero and Jonathan Papelbon finished the four-hitter.

Espinosa hit a two-run homer in the ninth against Colton Murray, and Drew followed with an inside-the-park homer that caromed off the wall in right-center and sharply away from outfielders.

Nola (4-4) gave up two runs and five hits in six innings and is 0-2 in six career starts against the Nationals.

Werth hit a solo homer in the first, but Cesar Hernandez’s RBI triple tied the score in the third.

Harper is day to day after he left in the seventh inning of Monday’s 4-3 victory over Philadelphia when he was hit by a pitch.

Righty Max Scherzer (5-4, 4.05) is to start Wednesday’s series finale for Washington and lefty Adam Morgan (1-3, 6.67) for Philadelphia. Scherzer is 5-1 with a 2.38 ERA in eight starts against Philadelphia, including 4-0 with a 1.88 since joining the Nationals in 2015. Morgan is 0-3 with an 8.10 in his last three starts.

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