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Despite trailing by five runs early, the Nationals rallied to get within a run and were 180 feet from tying the game in the bottom of the ninth. Was it wrong to consider this an encouraging development, given the situation this team is in right now?
"No, not at this point," Adam LaRoche admitted. "We're looking for anything positive to take out of a ballgame, and that was a great run late. Tying run in scoring position and one hit away. You can't expect to drive that run in every time. We don't give ourselves that many opportunities right there. So it was nice to have."
Maybe it's all the Nationals can do, cling to whatever glimmer of hope there is on a given night. There wasn't much else to be hopeful about on Monday, a day that left manager Davey Johnson weathered and worn down.