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A.J. Burnett softens stance on retirement after gem against Nats

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A.J. Burnett sounds a little like that golfer everybody knows, the one who’s ready to give up the game and sell his clubs until one great round pulls him back in.

After getting beaten by the Seattle Mariners last week, Burnett sounded like a man who was ready to walk away from at least $10 million and retire this winter.

“Probably not,” he said when asked whether he intended to continue his career in 2015. “But we’ll see.”

Starts like the one Burnett turned in Monday night are the reason people say things like, “We’ll see.”

Burnett fired seven innings of three-hit, one-run ball in leading the Phillies to a 3-2 win over the NL East-leading Washington Nationals, who had won 12 of 13 coming in.

Burnett, who entered the game with a major-league-high 76 walks, issued just one and he struck out a season-high 12.

Games like this keep you from selling your clubs.

“I guess you could say I’ve still got it when I do have it,” Burnett said. “My decision will come down to how I feel and what my family and I decide. It’s just one start, but to be able to go out and do that tonight makes you wonder.”
Burnett had been brutal in his previous seven starts, going 0-6 with a 6.41 ERA in that span.

The right-hander spent time watching video leading up to this start and did not like what he saw with his legs during his delivery. In short, he said he wasn’t staying on top of his legs and that was causing control issues, which were causing losses. He hadn’t won since July 11.

“I wish I’d found that glitch a month ago,” he said. “This is my first win in a long time, the first time I felt like me in a long time.”

-- Jim Salisbury,

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