Nationals’ Morse hamstrings Braves with eighth-inning home run

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It was huge in the standings, too, as the Nationals distanced themselves further from their NL East competition. The New York Mets moved into second place, four games back. The Philadelphia Phillies sat 10 games behind the Nationals in the basement of the NL East, while the Braves fell into third, 4½ games behind back of first.

More games like this, more wins they snatch from the grips of a near-loss, and the Nationals will be right where they want to be when they look up in a few months, too.

“This atmosphere tonight was a lot like a playoff atmosphere,” Clippard said. “I’ve never been in the playoffs, but I can imagine. It’s huge for us, especially because we’re a young team and we need these games to get us confidence when it’s going to count down the stretch. And I think it does that.”

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