Sunday, July 4, 2010

Meet the Mets....... (At Nationals Park)


When you come to IIWII, I know you must think that yours truly is so fanatically obsessed with the Redskins (so much so, he would write a blog focused on them) that he has no time (or interest) in other sports. And for that I would say sir (or madame)....you are wrong! I'm a local homer when it comes to sports. I root for the Wizards and the Capitals. Even though I have ties to Maryland and root for the Terps, Georgetown is one of the teams I grew up supporting.  You think the Redskins have ripped out your heart for the last couple of years, man the O's did that in the 90's.

To me, baseball had gotten so bad (with the strike, steroids and either the Yankees or Red Sox being the main playoff teams) that I really quit following it for a few years. I noticed the Nationals come to DC and started to follow them as they evolved from being the Expos to being their own franchise. I watched them every once in awhile when they played at RFK, if only to bring back past glories of the Redskins winning there. Last year, I started watching and followed the team as Manny Acta and Jim Bowden were replaced by Jim Riggleman and Mike Rizzo. Then came the drafting of Stephen Strasburg and it looked like the Nats were heading on the right track. This year we've (me and the Mrs.) been watching the Nats games practically ever night since the middle of May. There's not much else on TV wise and I DVR NFL Total Access so I can skim through them whenever I feel like it. So, I've seen the ups and downs with this team. A month or so ago I got tickets for the July 3rd game against the Mets (I chose this date b/c it was a night game, plus they were giving out the Red, White and Blue Nats caps), which will be my first live Nationals game. It lucked out for me that Stephen Strasburg was pitching.




Nationals Park is pretty cool. The food is good (Ben's Chili Bowl chili dogs were great) and it was incredibly easy for us to get to the park (we rode the Metro in for less than $7.00 per person/round trip and you're let out practically at the centerfield gates). I also liked how the Nationals try to keep the fans entertained throughout the game. They have the team mascot and the four presidents (Lincoln, Washington, Jefferson and Teddy Roosevelt) run around the field. They also have cheerleaders.......yes, cheerleaders. Not the classic NFL style cheerleaders, but people who try to get the 10th man (nice try Nats for having the 10th man to football's 12th Man in a huge football city) loud for the home team. The guy in our section put out a great deal of effort with dancing, singing and other stuff.

As for the game, Strasburg didn't look his best giving up two runs over five innings. The Nats rallied to tie the game but then gave up another 3 runs to make it 5-2. As we headed to the bottom of the 9th the Nats had scored once more and the score was 5-3. The Nats got the bases loaded and then Adam Dunn came up to bat.
Yes, the guy who looks like he could play guard for the Skins
He drove a shot to deep center field and most of the crowd thought it was a game ending grand slam, but after review it was off the top of the wall and ruled a double. Josh Willingham was walked and then Ivan "Pudge" Rodriguez hit the game winning single. I was surprised that the Nats could do it. Their offense has been pretty anemic as of late. I never really had any issues with Met fans. I rooted for them to win in '86 when they faced the Red Sox in the world series. But some of the Met fans were down right annoying yesterday and it made my day to see some of them leave pissed over the loss.

Anyway, here's some more pics and even a bonus pic of David Wright for the Met fans,

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