June 10, 2006

I Love a Rainy Night

"Best. Game. Ever." That was the 3-word text message that I left for Dave as Watson & I exited RFK at 12:50 am. Dave, in the interest of preserving marital harmony, opted out of last night's game in favor of attending a Fighting Gravity concert in Reston. Dave chose poorly.

In retrospect I'm not sure it was the best Nats game I've ever attended. That distinction might permanently belong to Opening Day 2005. I was also in the stands when J-Patt pitched a complete game shutout and Wilkie hit the first Nats grand slam against the Dodgers. And I was in da house for A-Sor's 3-HR game earlier this season. But in the immediate aftermath, with the adrenaline pumping and the Philly phans slumping, it certainly felt like the best game ever. And Curly W concurs.

I love rain delay games. It throws a wildcard into the mix. All the (literally) fairweather fans get bored and leave, I get more time to eat and drink in peace without worrying about missing the action on the field. And it completely throws the starting pitchers off their routines, in this case turning Phillies starter Brett Myers into Poison frontman Bret Michaels. Sure, Tony Armas looked a little rusty too, but that's a small price to pay for hanging a 7-spot on the other team's ace.

Best of all, it was all done without any contribution from Alfonso Soriano. Don't get me wrong, I would have been happy to see Fonzie flick a few dingers into the upper decks. I'm also not thrilled that he managed to strand roughly 42 baserunners. But he deserves a night off (which he hasn't had in a while,) a night where he doesn't have to be the sum total of the Nats offense. And the team needs to know that it can put together a win without him.

After last night's heroics Robert Fick gets a free pass from now until the All-Star break. He can co-host a puppy BBQ with Fred Malek and Mike "Girl Burner" DeFelice, and he'd still be okay in my book. Fick came through after every big name player in the lineup, from Fonzie to Dutch choked and spit the bit.

Damian Jackson, on the other hand, needs to go. Apparently D.J. got a little upset after a fan heckled him for his half-a**ed effort on a Jimmy Rollins double Thursday night. Said Jackson:

I went after it kind of nice and easy because I just did crash into the wall and we just got in at three o'clock in the morning. But these are
things that people don't know and they are never are going to know. So
therefore, I'm going to lose that battle if I even try to take that on. Jimmy Rollins just didn't stop. He made me look stupid.

Tell it to the long-haul truckers, Damian. And how exactly does soreness and lack of sleep impact your inability to lay down a bunt in the second consecutive key situation? We've got Brendan Harris to play the infield. Jose Guillen's coming back to take over the outfield. I'd say it's about time to explore putting Mr. Jackson in the Crappy Utility Player Relocation Program.


Dave said...

Thankfully, after her consumption of many "drinkies", I was able to watch the game from the 8th onward.

Nate's right -- I probably chose poorly. But then again, I'm going to get my bobblehead, and Nate has his own obligations in the interest of preserving familial harmony.

Bote Man said...

Damian Jackson made himself look stupid. But he's not an outfielder, so again Frank does not deploy his team effectively, leading to an extra-inning game when we might not have if we'd had a better defensive CF out there.

Now, where in the world do you suppose we could find a good defensive center fielder? Hmmm...