The Juice: Nats open six-game lead on Braves in NL East, Bumgarner wins duel with Kershaw (Big League Stew)
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Washington walkoff: It's getting to a point where the most impressive thing about the Washington Nationals' presumptive march to their first NL East title isn't that they're doing it a year or two ahead of schedule. Rather, it's the methodical and drama-free route that they have been taking to the postseason. Seriously, if you didn't know any better, you'd say this is a veteran team on its fourth or fifth division title in an as many years. They've been unflappable.
That's not to say that Monday's 5-4 win in 13 innings over the second-place Atlanta Braves was a cold and bloodless affair. It took an infield single from Chad Tracy — though the initial error ruling on Dan Uggla really should have stood — to score Jayson Werth from third and give the Nationals Park crowd a reason to go home happy.
Over the long view, though, the Nats have given their fans few reasons for palpitations. They own the most victories in baseball (76), hold the second biggest division lead in baseball at six games and haven't let the Braves get any closer to them than two and a half games since the beginning of June. That's an impressive standing for any team, let alone one that's enjoying the view from the top for the first time.
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