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Clemens home run sets up Harper extra-inning heroics in Phillies come-from-behind 4-3 win over Nationals

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Kody Clemens thought his game-tying home run in the ninth inning wasn't one at first. The Phillies super-utility man has been crushing the baseball since he was called back up to the Phillies on May 4, but even he had his doubts about whether the ball was going over the fence.

"I thought it was too low, to be honest," Clemens said. "It was great. That feeling is second to none. You kinda blackout there. I'm just super thankful it did go out. I didn't know it was, but it went out. It was awesome."

Clemens, entering the game for Edmundo Sosa in the seventh inning, hit the game-tying home run with two outs in the ninth to send the Phillies into extra innings. That home run set the stage for Bryce Harper's heroics in the 10th inning, as he hit Johan Rojas in on a sacrifice fly to give the Philadelphia Phillies a 4-3 victory over the Washington Nationals Saturday night.

The Phillies never led until Harper's sacrifice fly in the 10th won the game, and clinched another series win for the Phillies. This was the 14th consecutive series the Phillies won or tied, the second-longest streak in franchise history and the longest ever for the team in a single season.

Down to their last at-bat with two outs in the ninth, the Phillies found a way to extend a game they appeared to have no business being in.

"[This] goes back to the character of the guys in the clubhouse," said Phillies manager Rob Thomson. "They fight and they don't give up. They never think they're done until the last out. This is the character of the ball club. They always feel like they are in the game, no matter what the score is. Doesn't matter the inning."

The Phillies trailed three separate times in this one, yet rallied the knot the score each time. Bryson Stott hit a game-tying home run in the seventh to tie the game up at 2-2 before Clemens blasted his home run. Clemens also got a hit in that seventh inning to finish 2-for-2, improving his batting average to .304 and his OPS to 1.159.

"He has big league at-bats more and more every day," Harper said. "He goes in there [and] he's never overmatched. He doesn't try to do too much. Always tries to put the ball on the barrel and I think he just does a phenomenal job, even when he's not playing or starting the game, being able to lock it in later in the game against tough pitchers. You saw it tonight."

The Phillies had just two hits on the night when Stott hit the home run to tie it. Even though runs were hard to come by, Stott's hit seemed to wake up a sleeping offense through six innings. Washington starter MacKenzie Gore had the Phillies figured out through six innings before Stott's home run sent him to the dugout.

"He's got that extension — and life — on his fastball and a lot of his secondary pitches are pretty good, but he's throwing strikes," Thompson said. "That's what maybe we didn't see — not as much last year."

The Phillies improved to 33-14 with the victory, tied with the 1976 and 1993 teams for the best starts through 47 games in franchise history. This win wouldn't have been possible without the bat of Clemens, who had the hardest-hit home run of his career.

The homer was also the first game-tying home run of Clemens' career.

"Everyone was cheering and high-fiving me," Clemens said when he came back to the dugout. "It's awesome to be around these guys. We're all pulling for one another. It's amazing [to be here.] We all show up here and we're expected to win the game. It's an awesome atmosphere to be around and we have a lot of confidence in the locker room. It's all coming together."

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