Aug 17, 2013, 12:57 AM EST
|USA Today Sports Images|
ATLANTA — The curveball came in from Ian Krol at 77 mph, hanging right over the plate. And it departed via Justin Upton’s bat with far more velocity, clearing the fence in left-center and leaving the Braves mobbing their star slugger at the plate while the Nationals trudged away having suffered yet another disheartening loss to this Atlanta club.
The scene inside the Nationals’ clubhouse minutes later was even more disheartening. Amid dead-silence, Jayson Werth, Adam LaRoche and Ian Desmond sat side-by-side at their lockers, staring into nothingness. Krol and Taylor Jordan, fellow rookies on a veteran-laden roster, showered and dressed and tried to figure out what to say when asked by reporters about this 3-2, 10-inning loss.
And Bryce Harper sat alone, sporting a bandage on his arm after he twice was hit by pitches — the third time he has been plunked by the Braves in the last three meetings between these two teams — before walking out declining to speak to reporters.
Such is the state of affairs right now for a Nationals club that is stuck in baseball purgatory. They’re able to beat up on bad teams but getting beaten up by the good ones. Sometimes in the literal sense.
“It’s not easy losing, that’s for sure,” Werth said. “It’s kind of been the story of the year so far. We just play good enough to lose.”
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