Philadelphia Phillies opponent overview: Washington Nationals

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WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 13: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals looks on before playing the Chicago Cubs in game five of the National League Division Series at Nationals Park on October 13, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 13: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals looks on before playing the Chicago Cubs in game five of the National League Division Series at Nationals Park on October 13, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /
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Looking forward

Barring an utter collapse from the team, Washington is expected to win the National League East for the third straight season. Baseball Prospectus projects them to win 88 games this year, but they should be closer to the 97 wins they had in 2017.

More from Phillies News

This may be the last year Washington has to really compete in the division. Bryce Harper hits free agency this year and is expected to leave for a record contract from a team like the Phillies, Yankees, or Dodgers.

Matt Wieters, Daniel Murphy, Gio Gonzalez, and Ryan Madson are all also set to be free agents after this season. More and more players will start to go in the years following. Their farm system is on the rise, but still middle-of-the-pack.

Their window for a title may be closed after this year.

Next: Phillies updated 2018 roster projection

Just as the Phillies started to decline as Washington rose to the top, the inverse could happen in the near future.

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