ninth inning

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With a two-run lead in the ninth inning, and five straight left-handed batters due up in the Mets lineup, Nationals manager Davey Johnson called on his latest temporary closer.

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PHILADELPHIA -- Rarely does Tyler Clippard get the opportunity to watch the Nationals celebrate a victory in person, let alone be at the center of such a celebration on the field.

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PHILADELPHIA -- One night after another near-meltdown in the ninth inning, Henry Rodriguez is being moved out of the Nationals' closer role, with manager Davey Johnson saying he'll instea

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PHILADELPHIA -- For most relievers, the sight of a closer trotting out from the bullpen to pitch the ninth inning of a tight game brings with it a sense of calm.

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The range of emotions inside the Nationals' clubhouse Monday night following a wild, 8-5 victory over the Padres was on display for all to witness.

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