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Davis gets opportunity to help out bullpen

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ATLANTA -- With Bryce Harper going on the disabled list, the Nationals called up right-hander Erik Davis from Triple-A Syracuse.

Davis was 1-2 with a 3.00 ERA (eight earned runs in 24 innings) in 21 appearances for the Chiefs, all in relief.

The Nationals bullpen was heavily taxed by having to fill seven innings Friday night and with Craig Stammen, who pitched four innings, out for the next couple of days, the club felt better served with another arm in the bullpen.

"I was thrilled. This is anybody's dream that plays baseball," said the 26-year-old Davis, who found out he was coming up following Syracuse's 9-8, 12-inning loss. "To get it, especially here with a team that really is doing things in baseball, it makes me feel special that they value what I do and I want to contribute any way I can."

Davis had a feeling something was up, as he didn't pitch Friday despite the game going long. But he remained cautious, having also recently found out the hard way about the unpredictability of awaiting the call.

"I was actually told two weeks ago that I was getting called up for about 20 minutes and they called me back," said the native of San Jose, Calif., and a college teammate of Nats reliever Drew Storen at Stanford, who was acquired by Washington from San Diego on March 28, 2011. "That was when they were in San Francisco and that's where I'm from. So that was kind of tough. But it's all worth it now. I'm certainly not the first or the last person that's ever going to happen to and just to be in the discussion, that makes me very proud."

Davis had been a starter up until 2012, when he proved to be a valuable piece of the bullpen at Double-A Harrisburg and Syracuse, going a combined 8-3, with five saves and a 2.71 ERA in 48 games.

He feels his versatility will come in handy in Washington.

A close follower of current Nats lefty Tyler Clippard, Davis has found success using the changeup and is ready to use it in whatever role he's needed.

"I'm ready to do whatever they need," he said. "I've done everything in my career, from starting to closing. I probably won't do either of those two. I can do anything in between."

Jon Cooper is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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