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Jayson Werth makes game-ending, home run-saving catch

Jayson Werth’s home run-robbing catch. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

With the Nationals leading 5-2 with two outs in the top of the ninth on Friday, Jayson Werth robbed a potential home run at the right field wall that would have tied the game. Closer Rafael Soriano fired a fastball in to Daniel Murphy, one of the New York Mets’ best hitters this season, who drilled the pitch deep to right field.

Werth, playing no-doubles defense, raced back to the wall, timed his jump and caught a ball that looked destined to go over the fence, or at least hit the top of the wall and perhaps bounce over. Werth landed and casually took a few steps before jogging into high-five teammates after the victory.

“It was a close,” Werth said. “I know he hit it good.”

Werth said he couldn’t tell if the ball was going to be a home run or not. It is a more challenging play than might appear because Werth ran toward the warning track and kept an eye on the ball while not knowing exactly where he was in relation to the wall.

“When [Murphy] first hit it, I thought it had a chance, yeah,” Manager Matt Williams said. “It didn’t sound like he got it crisp off the bat but it carried really well. There was a chance.”

Werth delivered a classic line when asked for his reaction to making the play.

“I probably should have untucked my shirt,” he said, referring to Soriano’s save-finishing trademark move.

James Wagner joined the Post in August 2010, wrote about high school sports across the region for two years and has covered the Nationals since the middle of the 2012 season.
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