Sunday, September 09, 2007
They Are Still Fun To Watch--For Me
To me, Our Washington Nationals are fun to watch for so many different reasons. This Afternoon in Atlanta--many of those validating points played out.
After two straight awful losses to The Atlanta Braves--another Huge Tailspin seemed in the works. Yet, Our Washington Nationals came from behind this afternoon to win, 7-4 at Turner Field.
Our Team is fun because--Just when you think My Main Man!! will never see any significant playing time the remainder of the season--he performs his Finest At-Bat Of The Year. Ryan Church going 8 pitches into a two strike count--fouling off curve ball after off speed pitch--even holding back his swing on a pitch in the dirt from Atlanta's Lance Cormier--all with one out and two runners on in the 6th. Yeah, even I was Stunned at Ryan's Patience. A final pitch that found Our Number 19 slamming a hanging pitch in over the plate to dead centerfield. A Blast that even The Great Fielder, Andruw Jones, had no shot at. A Game Changing go ahead Three Run Home Run, his 12th--that gave MY MAIN MAN!! his career high 57th, 58th & 59th RBI. My Favorite Player not over swinging. Instead, clearly he was seeing the ball well. Good Vision that gave him THE CONFIDENCE to hang on during 7 tough pitches--until Ryan Church got something he knew--he could whack. When it counted the most this afternoon--Church's Plate Appearance was one of the best of this season. An effort that put Washington in front to stay--at that point, 5-3.
How many teams, more than ours, have succeeded with players, looking for an opportunity, then seeing them taking advantage--turning heads in the process? I would imagine--not many. In the 7th inning, Lefthanded Situational Reliever Arnie Munoz, recently recalled from AAA Columbus, called on by Our Manager Manny Acta to put an end to a bases loaded two out situation, set up by Luis Ayala. A Pressure Spot that Munoz seized upon, by getting Chipper Jones to hit into an inning ending force out.
Enjoyable this afternoon to see D'angelo Jimenez have his CAREER DAY in a Washington Nationals Uniform. Three hits, including one double (a near miss home run down the right field line foul) and most importantly--three Runs Batted In. Replacing the slumping FLop, Our Number 6 was successful in Atlanta this Sunday. A key player helping to end a modest two game losing streak. A victory that makes the past two terrible defeats alot more palatable. For once, its nice to be able to write something positive about D'angelo Jimenez.
And amusing to watch youngsters like Jason Bergmann continue carving out a niche for themselves on an ever evolving ball club. A Rising Competitor wearing Number 57 that said during Spring Training he would do anything they ask to be apart of the rotation. Despite two extended stays on The Disabled List--Jason Bergmann has made a name for himself. Being positive, taking advantage of the breaks of the game, and the misfortune of others (due to injury)--he has slowly become a dependable Major League Pitcher. Nothing wrong with that.
Any day "The Most Thrilling Closer In The Game" survives Turner Field with a 1-2-3 Ninth--is always joyous. Chad Cordero's 32nd Save, one to cherish, at a ballpark whose Home Team has been Chad's largest nemesis.
Winners of their last 6 out of 8--Curly "W" Number 64 puts the possibility of Our Washington Nationals exceeding last year's win total of 71--directly in sight. Coming down to the close of the season--reaching that mark would be very gratifying.
So, for me, Our Washington Nationals are still fun to watch. Football has not re-directed my attention. Because, Our Manager Manny Acta continues to keep his player's heads in each ball game--even with a losing season--all but assured. Focus which Manny has yet to lose--Devotion that will not wane from me, nor The African Queen. Sohna may well love Manny more than I--as hard as that fact may seem to be believed.
Keep it going--Manny!!
Finally--I don't think I will EVER forget Lance Cormier, today the loser for The Atlanta Braves. This journeyman pitcher, then pitching for The Arizona Diamondbacks, will always be remembered by me for plunking Vinny Castilla at RFK Stadium on Opening Night--2005. All Vinny needed was a single to hit for the cycle in the VERY FIRST GAME played in Washington, DC in over 33 years. Never will I get the BOO's--that rained down from all over The Old Ballyard on that play--out of my mind. That very moment proved to Major League Baseball--there were KNOWLEDGEABLE Baseball Fans in The Nation's Capital. As much I wanted to see Castilla make his mark, the mistake pitch resulted in appreciation, none thought possible, from those who control The Great Game. After over three decades, Justice Was Finally Served. Washington, DC had well deserved a Major League Franchise far sooner--perhaps--should have never, EVER, lost The Washington Senators. That Fact, The Owners of Major League Baseball's Teams, were schooled on that exciting FIRST NIGHT!!
Tonight's InGame Photos--(AP) Gregory Smith