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Nats' bullpen buckles in ninth, holds on in 11th for a 5-4 win

By the time it ended, after another gem (and trainer’s trip to the mound) for Stephen Strasburg, after an ill-fated experiment led to the Nationals’ first blown save in more than a month, after a Ryan Zimmerman hit-by-pitch-turned-strikeout led to the go-ahead run — after nearly four hours of baseball finally gave way to a hurried sprint to the airport for a long flight home — Thursday night’s game had turned into a test of will.

So with a huge lead in his division and a few runs to work with, Baker tested another variable — would Doolittle be as effective playing the matchup game as he had been in the ninth?

Doolittle looked off, allowed more hard contact in one inning than he had in a week and narrowly missed surrendering a game-tying home run, too.

Kintzler allowed hits to two of the first three batters he faced, then another that tied the game, increasing his hits-allowed-as-a-National total by 50 percent in one inning.

Strasburg left a marvelous pitcher’s duel with Dallas Keuchel after six innings and 90 pitches because of what looked like a calf cramp, striking out seven and walking one.

READ MORE (Washington Post)

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  • Rendon's big game helps Nats over Astros 5-4 in 11 inningsThe San Luis Obispo Tribune
  • Washington Nationals' new bullpen finally blows lead, but Nats fight back for ...Federal Baseball
  • Texas-sized pitchers' duel (Nats win 5-4 in 11th)
  • Washington Nationals' lineup for series finale with Houston Astros in Minute ...Federal Baseball
  • Astros hit 3 homers to end skid vs NationalsNew Jersey Herald
  • Game No. 127 Preview: Houston Astros vs. Washington NationalsThe Crawfish Boxes
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  • The education of a rookie: Growing pains continue for Nationals' Andrew StevensonWashington Post

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Nats' bullpen buckles in ninth, holds on in 11th for a 5-4 win


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