Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Threatening Skies, Non Threatening Performance

Sorry for the late post. When the game ended early this morning--Sohna and I noticed a good friend of ours who works at New Nationals Park stranded without a way home. So, without thinking twice--we drove this nice man home--near the DC/Maryland Border. Arriving at our home at nearly 2AM--there was no way the gamer was going to be completed by early this morning--especially with Barack and Hillary both speaking in DC this morning at 10 AM. NO--NOT GOING TO HAPPEN.

Reminder--Lot 7 Tonight for Nats Express. DC United is playing at RFK as Lot 8 is being used by their fans.

There was only one memory worth saving from last night's sloppy and rainy affair at New Nationals Park--because this game should have never started. But, at least this moment was a good one.

With Cesar Itzturas of The St. Louis Cardinals off and running from first base on a hit and run--Brian Barton (the man with the great dreadlocks under his batting helmet) lofted a liner to right field in the top of the second inning. Our Washington Nationals Kory Casto charged in and caught the baseball. Having plenty of time to throw to first base--Casto tossed his own liner to Dmitri Young at first base. As Home Plate Umpire Dana DeMuth ran down the first base line to cover the call--Odalis Perez was sauntering over toward first--to supposedly back up the throw. But really, was just watching the action develop before him--not realizing he was soon to become The Center of the Action.

Not paying attention to DeMuth charging to first--Odalis Perez blindsided DeMuth and sent the umpire sprawling. As Young caught the baseball well before Itzturas returned to the bag--Dana proceeded to somersault on the white chalk line--flipping over, losing his balance, and WHILE STILL ROLLING AND ATTEMPTING TO RIGHT HIMSELF--all in one motion--SIGNALED THE OUT CALL!!--Flamboyantly with his right arm.

A Defensive Play of The Game made special by the quick reactions and recovery by Home Plate Umpire Dana DeMuth. DeMuth, Dmitri Young and Odalis Perez LAUGHING afterwards. That was great stuff--thanks to a heads up play by Dana DeMuth. Too Bad Our Washington Nationals couldn't provide more fun throughout this dreary evening.

Because that moment was just about the only heads up play by Our Washington Nationals in nine elongated innings. While the skies threatened all night to end this game early--Washington provided no threat whatsoever for St. Louis. The rains came, again and again and again. So much so--by the time this scheduled affair was actually completed--"Friends & Family Status" had been reached in the stands. If there were 250 people left at New Nationals Park--I would be surprised.

The rain began moments after the singing of The National Anthem, torrential at times in the very first inning. Yet, for some reason, the game was not delayed. The conditions providing an incredibly sloppy and poorly played top of the first inning by Washington. A Key Error by FLop and a badly played liner to left by Ryan Langerhans opened up the floodgates to a four run inning by St. Louis--capped off by a Three Run Homer to left by Yadier Molina. 4-0 Cardinals, before most anyone had returned to their ticketed seat.

And these downpours did not stop throughout most of the night. A first game stoppage of 1 Hour & 51 Minutes, then a second rain delay just 16 minutes after first one ended. Not only were Our Washington Nationals never in this affair--neither were Our Fans. Hardly anyone remaining for the 12:19AM end time. No real reason to stay--The St. Louis Cardinals had threatened. The Skies had threatened. Our Washington Nationals had never posed a threat. The Cardinals even stealing home plate on a double steal in the 4th.

Final score from just dreary New Nationals Park--The St. Louis Cardinals 6 and Our Washington Nationals 1. The first time in memory--a late night wet and rainy Home Game had not ended in dramatic fashion. It's night like these--we always stay to the end. You never now what might happen. For some reason though, The Baseball Gods decided there would be no miracles tonight for those few fans that went the distance. Too bad.

Game Notes & Highlights

How fitting that before and after the end of the first rain delay--"The Human Rain Delay" himself was on the mound for Our Washington Nationals. Jesus Colome actually throwing some SMOKE with the wet baseball. Not overly effective but twice reaching 97 on the radar gun. Jesus Flores' Mitt was POPPING. With the thin crowd still on hand--the sound could be heard throughout the park.

FLop is returning to is mind boggling form. Poorly playing a easy double play 1-4-3 relay at second in the very inning, Felipe Lopez not only did not catch the baseball from Odalis Perez--but did not even have his foot on the bag to record the out--even if the ball had stayed in his mitt. Later, FLop decided NOT to run out two recorded outs. Sorry Felipe, not playing well can be understandable at times. Not giving 100% is NEVER acceptable. No Not Ever.

Tonight, The African Queen and I spent a lot of time in The Stars & Stripes Club--staying dry. But, the sight of Little Abby finally giving in to necessary sleep at the end of the second rain delay--great to witness and photograph. Even her dad, Mike--always in tow, was popping the pictures for posterity sake.

Just before the first stoppage in play, I headed upstairs after noticing EVERYONE hanging under the small lip of the Upper Infield Gallery--trying to stay dry. These folks were getting drenched in the rain. There is no place to hide upstairs. Like NONE.

Finally--after the final rain delay--Sohna and I had THE ENTIRE SECTION 218 to ourselves. Club Level was VACANT--except for a handful of die hards. And it paid off--when during the 9th inning--two consecutive foul balls headed our way. Having not caught one baseball all season--Sohna and I retrieved two in less than five minutes. With not alot of competition you understand--picking them up off the concrete floor was not a problem.

We like the 2008 Inaugural Nationals Park Logo on the Official Game Ball. Why do Our Washington Nationals NOT SELL this exact same ball in the gift shops? Seems like a no brainer as a collectible.


Anonymous said...

What true gamer you and Sohna are if you were still there at 12:19 am when the game finally ended!
Hopefully, we'll be seeing you again soon.

Anonymous said...

Were you as bored as I was during the delays? They were playing canned highlight reels like This Week in Baseball highlighting clubs like the Dodgers and Yankees. Why didn't they show another game on that massive scoreboard, as is done in other parks, or at least provide Nats related entertainment? I got sick of the scrolling slides with players names, followed by an ad for build-a-bear.

Screech's Best Friend said...

Anonymous-this is where Club Level becomes an advantage. We are out of the elements and ended up chatting at The Homestead Grays Bar with some friends--having drinks, eating dinner. Watched Barack and Hillary speak on MSNBC and ended up with a brief visit from Stan Kasten. We didn't really pay attention to the HDTV SCREENs, although what you saw, was also being played in The Stars & Stripes Club on other monitors.

An Briosca Mor said...

Hey SBF, did they have a Presidents Race last night? I was wondering since the middle of the fourth inning came after the first rain delay, and conditions on the field looked kinda bad by then, at least on MASN HD anyway. (On MASN standard def, it would have looked like a sunny day - that's how bad their standard def picture is. But that's a whole 'nother rant...) And on another mascot-related note, did they at least throw some suds on top of the tarp during the rain delay and have your best friend go all Rick Dempsey on it? You know, he really does need a bath after three plus seasons out there.

Screech's Best Friend said...

ABM--Yes, there was a presidents race-Tom won--on the night his tee-shirt was handed out at the gate. No--no suds for Screech, but not a bad idea.

VCUAlum Kyle said...

Do you think we need to fire our trainer and medical staff???

Every year it seems like we call up on the active roster an avg during a full 162 game season 45-50 players. Why cant our guys stay healthy? I feel like we need to get better trainers or something. We are always injured and this year is even worse.

To the gallery:
if Odalis Perez goes on the DL who do you think they will call up? Schroder, Balliester (my pick), or .......

On a side note I miss say I am jealous. I have Carolina League balls, International League balls, and Appalachain League balls but I do not have a MLB ball. I am very jealous you got two in one night! Congrats

Anonymous said...

Centerplate has not even paid some of their employees on the retail side and have bounced some checks to others so how can they be counted on to put a good product in the team store?