Gio Gonzalez

Nationals follow frustrating 2015 season with NL East title

Dusty Baker couldn't help but smile as he watched his players pour champagne and beer on each other.

The Washington Nationals clinched their third National League East title in five years on Saturday night. They beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 6-1 and watched on TV in the clubhouse as the New York Mets were eliminated from the division race 20 minutes later with a 10-8 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies.

Then the party started.

"Let the animals run wild, and they are certainly running wild tonight," said Baker, the Nationals' first-year manager. "I love it. Look at them. These are the wildest I've ever seen."

The Nationals were seemingly not only...