Bryce Harper had three hits in his return to the starting lineup, Edwin Jackson pitched eight strong innings to win consecutive starts for the first time this season and the Washington Nationals beat the Toronto Blue Jays 6-3 Monday.
Adam LaRoche hit a two-run homer and Rick Ankiel also connected as the NL East leaders won for the fourth straight time and extended its lead over second place Atlanta to three games. The Braves lost to the New York Yankees 3-0.
Jackson (3-3) improved to 4-0 in his past seven starts against Toronto dating to July 30, 2008. The right-hander, who had gone eight starts without a win before beating the New York Mets in his last outing, allowed two runs and three hits. He walked three and struck out three.
Left-hander Sean Burnett came on after Edwin Encarnacion's leadoff double in the ninth and gave up a two-run homer to pinch-hitter Yan Gomes before finishing off the win.
The Nationals pounded out 14 hits, two shy of their season high for a nine inning...