May 12, 2010, 3:51 AM EDT
Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Ivan Rodriguez's words couldn't help Tyler Clippard or Ian Desmond tonight.
NEW YORK — This was the kind of loss that hadn't been seen around these parts in quite some time. Actually, it had been more than a year since the Nationals last lost a game they once led by five runs.
So this 8-6 setback to the Mets, featuring an eighth-inning meltdown of epic proportions, stings. It's the kind of loss last year's team grew to expect, and the kind of loss this year's team never believes is possible.
But it happened. The boxscore spells it out in all its gory details. The three runs allowed by Brian Bruney, followed by the three more runs allowed by Tyler Clippard. Throw in an Ian Desmond error and a bases-loaded walk by Miguel Batista, and you've got the worst loss of this young season.
You've also got the first opportunity this year to find out what these Nationals are made of. Will they allow a crushing loss like this to linger, or will they brush it off and return tomorrow afternoon with renewed purpose?
To a man, every player inside the visitors clubhouse at Citi Field tonight insisted they'll come back strong tomorrow.
"We will. That's what this club is all about. We fight," Clippard said. "Yeah, it hurts right now. But we'll sleep it off, and tomorrow we'll be ready to go. It's a 162-game season. This is going to happen."
Sure, it's going to happen to every team a couple of times every season. But these are the kind of losses that left the 2009 Nationals shell-shocked and often led to lengthy losing streaks. One crushingRead more »
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