The Washington Nationals are sputtering, but they still hold an unlikely lead by the slimmest of margins in the cluttered NL East.
It may be even more surprising that the New York Mets aren't far behind.
The Nationals will try to reverse a sluggish stretch in the opener of this three-game series against the visiting Mets on Tuesday night.
Washington (30-22) and New York (31-24) are two of baseball's biggest surprises through the season's first two months.
The Nationals' emergence into a potential division contender has them sitting percentage points ahead of Miami for the East lead. However, the Mets are just one-half game back while Atlanta trails by two and Philadelphia by four in the NL's tightest race.
Washington, though, has lost four of five after wasting a two-run first inning to fall 3-2 to the Braves on Sunday.
New York also enters this series looking to bounce back, losing 5-4 to St. Louis on Monday after winning the first three games of the series while allowing jus...