The Braves left 14 runners on base -- all of which seemingly came in the final innings when the club had numerous scoring opportunities -- in Monday night's 5-4 loss to the Washington Nationals. Atlanta now sits six games back of their NL East foes with 40 games to play.
The Braves started chipping away after trailing 4-1 early. Paul Janish beat out an infield single in the fourth to cut the deficit to two runs. Heyward followed in the fifth with a two-run jack off Jordan Zimmermann to tie the game at 4-4.
That score held until the 13th inning despite countless chances for both teams. It seemed like each club had a runner in scoring position in every inning, with strikeouts and unproductive pop outs leading to no runner crossing home plate safely.
The Nationals won in the 13th without hitting a ball out of the infield. Ian Desmond singled on a weak grounder to second baseman Dan Uggla. After a bunt groundout forced Desmond out at second and put Danny Espinosa on first, Chad Tracy chopped a ball between shortstop Paul Janish and third baseman Chipper Jones. The ball was booted, allowing Espinosa to advance to third base and putting Tracy on first.
Kurt Suzuki followed with a grounder to Uggla, who was playing in, only this time the veteran second baseman bobbled the would-be double play opportunity and allowed the winning run to score.
The Braves and Nats will meet again on Tuesday night.