Wednesday, May 21, 2008
As Jamie Moyer trotted home from third base on Shane Victorino's single to right field--The Philadelphia Phillies upped their lead tonight over Our Washington Nationals to 6-0. Then, after Elijah Dukes fielded this bases loaded RBI hit--right at him--the score advanced to 8-0, when a routine toss back into the infield by Dukes was poorly played by Dmitri Young. The site of the thrown ball glancing off Our Number 21's fielding glove--skipping on the grass off toward the 3rd Base Dugout--unable to be retrieved by Jesus Colome--encapsulated just how badly Our Washington Nationals were beaten tonight at New Nationals Park.
This one error set the tone for one of the worst innings Washington may ever play. By the time The Philadelphia Phillies had batted around and sent 13 hitters to the plate--Philly had scored 8 additional runs and lead Washington 12-0. Yes, 12-0!!
You had to wonder if The Umpires might call the game over The Skunk Rule. The Little League decision to stop play after so many innings when one team is up 10 or more runs on another. I would bet not many in attendance and even those playing on the field--would not have minded this Wednesday Night.
This evening--Washington received some poor starting pitching from Matt Chico. Our Number 47 giving up three Home Runs--including A TITANIC BLAST off the bat of Ryan Howard--his first of two homers in the game. This one--landed into the UPPER DECK in right centerfield. Worse--the shot came on an 0-2 pitch by Chico. Nothing worse than that for any pitcher. The first home run to EVER reach Section 243 in a regulation game. What a shot by Howard!! That ball had that majestic flight to it. Ryan Howard HAMMERED IT!!
Later in the terrible sixth inning--Jesus Colome relieved Chico--and just added fuel to the fire. Stepping on the mound with a 3.38 ERA, Our Number 43 was removed from this game--after recording just one out in the inning. But--after allowing five hits, one walk and six runs. Jesus Colome stepped to the Clubhouse sporting a new and not so friendly 5.82 ERA. Did he ever get beaten badly.
This eight run top of the sixth by Philadelphia found Colome and Chris Schroder (who allowed Howard's second home run on the very first pitch he threw in the game) combining to throw 55 Pitches in the half inning. That's right--55 PITCHES!! I recall a game in early 2007 at RFK Stadium--where Jason Bergmann threw 51 pitches in the first inning of his start that night--but at no other time--do I remember such an exhaustive effort to record three outs in just one inning in Washington's DC History Since 2005.
The Mock CHEERS from the those on hand to witness the catastrophe--LOUD AND BOISTEROUS--when the third out was finally recorded in the terrible top of the sixth.
This game so far out of hand, many in the crowd of 28,055 got up to leave immediately after that eight run sixth. By the time Our Washington Nationals actually scored two runs--New Nationals Park had reached "Friends & Family" Status. And the mock cheering in celebratory salute of avoiding the shutout--now echoing throughout the emptying park. For history's sake, there was hardly anyone in the park to witness the moment.
But--at least The African Queen and I can say--we did stay until the bitter end. In fact, Sohna and I were just about the only ones sitting in Section 218 from the 8th inning on. Few others were willing to provide support until the final out was recorded.
Although, it would be hard to blame anyone tonight as The Philadelphia Phillies Skunked Our Washington Nationals 12-2 at chilly and vacant (at the end) New Nationals Park.
Game Notes & Highlights
With John Lannan, Tim Redding and now Jason Bergmann all pitching well and showing promise--why not send "Our Starter In Training" to the minors for a refresher? Matt Chico is talented--but appears to have lost his confidence. Unable to locate his pitches consistently--he needs to regroup and comeback at a later date. There is no harm in that. I'm still sticking with my Dark Horse Favorite from Spring Training--Garrett Mock to make the transition from Minor League thrower to Major League Pitcher.
Amazingly--Washington had 12 hits tonight and could not push across any runs when the game was still in it's infancy. Jesus Flores with three, Ryan Zimmerman, Lastings Milledge and Felipe Lopez--all with two apiece. As has been a problem all season--runners are continually stranded in scoring position. Case in point in the bottom of the second--Milledge on third base and Flores on first with no outs. Wily Mo Pena--flys out meekly, Dukes and Chico strike out.
That Jesus Colome performance tonight was incredible for how badly he pitched. Batting Practice for The Phillies. Colome made Matt Chico's effort look respectable. It was that type of night--especially when Schroder comes on and throws Ryan Howard a first pitch fastball that Ryan deposits over the right centerfield wall. Only Joel Hanrahan would pitch for Washington tonight and get away unscored upon.
Late reports are stating now that Our Washington Nationals may place Austin Kearns on The Disabled List--as his elbow is not healing. Would Our General Manager Jim Bowden recall Alex Escobar to give him another shot? His last? Or Ryan Langerhans? Or someone else--if Kearns is disabled? Either way JimBo chooses--we need some offense--badly--from our outfield. They are not currently doing their jobs--offensively.
Until Dukes singled in his last At-Bat--Elijah's Batting average was down to .037. 037--that's correct!! Wow!!
At least there was some fun off the field.
Usher Rick made a costume addition to his special Nats Phanatic. Not only sporting a new Red Nats Jacket & Curly "W" Bear, but a sign stating: "I am a NATtily attired Phanatic!!"
In the 4th inning--during the GEICO Presidents Race--Teddy came running out of the centerfield gate flashing a cardboard sign. Handwritten on his pad was "Bring On The Sausages" and "Show Me The Mustard". This Memorial Day Weekend, The Milwaukee Brewers visit New Nationals Park. Are The Brewers bringing along their Famous Racing Sausages? As you may recall--The Pittsburgh Pirate Pierogies visited Washington early this month--when The Pirates played at New Nationals Park.
Finally, when the game became a romp--it was time to do some visiting. So, I headed down to the main concourse to catch up with Boris and Charles. They were our regular ushers for the past few seasons in Section 320 at RFK Stadium. We miss those two guys. They have always been into the fun of it all. We like that--a lot.
Tonight's InGame Photos--(AP) Lawrence Jackson
All other photos--Nats320 (All Rights Reserved)