A Fish Fry in the Rain

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I know you’re looking at this post and thinking one of two things: one) why does the title mention a fish fry when this will obviously be about baseball and two) wasn’t there just a post about baseball a few days ago? Well dear reader – when the Nationals play the Marlins, we hope to have a “fish fry” and yes, I went to not one but two Nationals games in one week. My joy truly knows no bounds.
Scherzer Poster – Love it!

The view from my lunch post.

This game was a make-up of the game we were originally supposed to attend on April 9th…however the weather couldn’t decide what it wanted to do back in April and it was snowing/sleeting with winds blowing at something like 45+ mph…so it wasn’t a good day for baseball. This past Saturday though, it started off as an absolutely beautiful day for baseball…sunny, fluffy white clouds and 75…basically made for sitting at the ballpark, munching on some peanuts (and Cracker Jack…) and watching the boys of summer!

Contemplating baseball…definitely…
Admiring the field.

The line-up for Saturday’s game…stretching along the wall…
The Espi Beard lives on…even if it’s not on the jumbotron!
…take me out to the crowd….

We invited our friend Doug along for the day since we had an extra ticket and the drive into DC was surprisingly easy; not too much stop and go traffic, which is pretty close to a miracle on any given day! We had lunch at the Budweiser Brew House, formerly known as the Red Porch, but since Budweiser is a big sponsor this year…there was a name change! The food is still good and you can still sit right on the field and watch batting practice while you eat your meal, so that’s really all that matters…at least to me.

I ducked into the Team Store to grab t-shirts for Lindsey and I – since we’d played witness to Max Scherzer’s history making 20 strikeouts earlier in the week, we had to have the new t-shirt that says “Strikeouts are sexy”. Ha-ha!

Peering out from under the Budweiser Terrace…
I do love the ballpark!
Cheese! It’s baseball time again! Yahoo!

Our seats were a bit higher up than I’d normally choose, but they were purchased as a part of a holiday ticket package, so we’ll be sitting there two more times this season. Hey – a seat in the ballpark is a seat in the ballpark, right? The usher in section 226 was a lively one, giving everyone a high five before showing them to their seats, dancing with the music and just generally being awesome. She scored awesome points from us because when she saw that we were on row T…basically at the top of the stadium…she told us to take the three seats on the fourth row and as long as no one claimed them, we could stay parked right there. Guess what? No one claimed them! I couldn’t have been more pleased since I already felt like we were sitting up in heaven…but then again, I think we all know I’m only slightly obsessed with my Nats.

From Section 226 all the players look like ants…
Getting in a warm-up before the game.
O Say Can You See…

Saturday’s game was at 1:05 and was game one of a split double-header against the Miami Marlins. The game started with a bang…literally…as the Marlins got in a one run homer in the top of the first, but the Nationals would get that back and more in the bottom of the first. The Marlins pitcher walked the first three batters to load the bases and then Murphy hit a sac fly to tie the game up, followed by Zimmerman’s sac fly that made the game 2-1. Harper stole third base and then raced home on Werth’s single, making the game 3-1 before the inning would finally end. The Marlins fought back again in the fifth and scored a run on a double, making the game 3-2…but the Nationals fought back yet again with Taylor singling, promptly stealing second base and then racing his way home on Rendon’s single, making the game 4-2!

Let’s play ball!
Bases loaded for Daniel “Hits” Murphy…bring on the runs!
An amazing blue sky – perfect for baseball!
20 K’s = $20 Tickets…on the silly blurry jumbotron…

The weather was holding…but about the time that score went to 4-2, the ever darkening skies began to creep closer and closer to the field… The sixth inning started with the wind whipping and the Marlins whipping a hit, followed by an RBI that made the game 4-3…and as the sky opened up and the rain started to fall, causing most people to retreat into the concourse, Wilson Ramos again made it a two run game by smashing a home run out to center field and securing the score at 5-3.

Dark skies on the horizon…
Teddy took the win in this running…go Teddy!
The menfolk discussing….who knows what?
The rain getting closer with each inning…
Retreating under the overhang for the top of the sixth…

Watching the seventh inning unfold from under the concourse, the Marlins struck yet again…a lead off double and an RBI single once again put them within one run of the Nationals, who would score no runs in the seventh and the game would be at 5-4. The wind continued to whip, the rain continued to pour and we all figured surely they’d just call the game – right? A game only has to make it through five innings to be considered official; just 4.5 innings if the home team is in the lead, so why were they continuing to play in the downpour? We ended up moving around the field in an effort to find a better viewing spot; it’s always so ironic to end up watching a baseball game at the Park…on a TV under the stands. All the action is literally feet away and you’re watching the game on a TV. Oh gee.

The rain…and a home run from Wilson Ramos….arrive in the bottom of the sixth!
Watching Harper bat from the cover of the concourse…while the rain poured…
No-Hitter Number Two…
No-Hitter Number One…
Max in Motion…pictures courtesy of being in motion around the concourse to find better baseball game viewing…

Shawn Kelley pitched for the Nationals in the top of the eighth and kept things scoreless for the Marlins, while the Nationals added a run in the bottom of the eighth when den Dekker reached on an error, allowing Taylor to race home and make the game 6-4! Jonathan Papelbon came in at the top of the ninth…amidst the puddles collecting on the field…and worked around a leadoff hit and two walks to secure the game for the Nationals. We fried the fish in the downpour, winning this game 6-4 and allowing everyone to head for home happy…albeit a little bit soggy…

Watching the game through the window of the PNC Diamond Club. *sigh*
Curly W! In the rain! 
Waving good-bye to DC for the day!

So – two games in one week. Awesome! Recapping two winning games in a week…even more awesome! It will be a few weeks before I’m back at Nationals Park for another game but I’m sure I’ll find plenty to “talk” about between now and then!

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