After seeing their lineup go cold following a three-run first inning and their bullpen blow a lead they held for over seven innings the Nationals came through in the bottom of the ninth with a thrilling walkoff victory over the Atlanta Braves. Denard Span is the hero with a one-out RBI hit in the ninth off Craig Kimbrel aided by a Andrelton Simmons error to give the Nats the winning run. Dan Haren gave the Nationals a strong start with six innings of one-run ball the only run he allowed came off a sacrifice fly by Freddie Freeman in the sixth. The Nationals were up for much of the game lost the lead and then regained it off the best closer in the game. In taking back the win the Nats prevented the Braves from being able to clinch the NL East division in the second game of the doubleheader. They now enter tonight 4 1/2 games out of the NL Wild Card race with a chance to get their first series win against Atlanta this season. Meanwhile Cincinnnati will battle the Astros at 8:10 p.m. in Texas.

Hitting highlight: The Nats entered the bottom of the ninth inning down 5-3 thanks to a late insurance run notched by the Braves in the top of the frame. Kimbrel had trouble finding the strike zone and walked Adam LaRoche to lead off the inning. A Wilson Ramos single and Anthony Rendon walk loaded the bases before a pinch-hitting Chad Tracy brought home the first run on a groundout to first base. Then came Span who hit a hard grounder up the middle. Simmons got a glove on it as Ramos came around to score and then couldn’t hold on as Rendon raced around third. All in all it was three runs in the bottom of the ninth and gave the Nats their 80th victory of the season.