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WUSA apologizes after leaving Washington Nationals viewers in the lurch

Washington Nationals Bryce Harper (L) is congratulated after hitting two-run home run by teammate Jayson Werth in the third inning against the Cincinnati Reds at the Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati, Ohio, April 6, 2013. (Mark Lyons/EPA)

You can’t please all the people all the time, and in baseball, it’s not over until it’s over. Both maxims came into play Saturday when Channel 9 switched away from a dramatic Nationals game to begin basketball coverage, apparently to some dismay.

In a statement posted on WUSA’s Web site, station president and general manager Mark Burdett said Channel 9 decided Saturday to leave the Nationals broadcast at 4 p.m. to join coverage of the NCAA Final Four men’s basketball tournament.

Regretfully, he said, that “upset a great many viewers who wanted to see the extra-inning finish” to the Nationals’ game in Cincinnati. The Nationals’ 11th-inning victory did not come until 4:40 p.m.

Apologizing to those upset, WUSA said it ran crawls telling viewers how they could continue to watch the tense and dramatic game.

It was announced in February that MASN, described as the team’s TV home, would join WUSA to simulcast 20 Nationals games.

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