The Nationals have produced enough late rallies already this season — they've got seven come-from-behind victories in 22 games — that they don't ever feel a sense of panic, or feel like all hope is lost. But last night's bottom-of-the-ninth drama was particularly out-of-the-blue given the situation.
Trailing 4-1 and showing little sign of life at the end of a long, cold night at the ballpark, the Nationals somehow turned what looked like a certain demoralizing loss and a series sweep at the hands of the Angels into their most-dramatic win to date.
What remained of a crowd of 22,504 jumped for joy in the empty aisles at Nationals Park. The guys in the center of the diamond celebrated, mobbing Adam LaRoche following his game-winning hit. But nobody in the clubhouse afterward suggested they ever expected anything else from a club that is making a habit out of this stuff.
"I've played on teams where it's just a feeling," said Jayson Werth, who tied the game with a 2-run double and then scored the winning run on LaRoche's single. "You can't really explain it, but there's confidence there. You don't ever feel out. I feel it on this team for sure."