Final Score: Pirates 5, Nationals 4
Dame of the Game:
Adam LaRoche: 2-3, HR, 2 RBI, R, BB, K. Zimmerman and LaRoche return from injury and mount a comeback for the Nats in the 9th inning! What an inspiring and beautiful story of determination and persevera-
Shame of the Game:
Henry Rodriguez: .2 IP, 2 ER, HR, 2 H, K. Henry Rodriguez turned inspiration into desecration by blowing LaRoche’s hard-earned lead. Perhaps the most annoying part of this is that I was all excited to give Shame of the Game to Ian Desmond for his horrible error in the 8th that gave the Pirates their third run, but Rodriguez stole it for himself by doing something even more shameful.
Oh, Henry. Ohhhhhhh Henry. OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOH, Henry. Oh Henry! How could you? How could you spoil such a wonderful ending to a game? The 9th inning was like finding a delicious-looking candy bar lying on the street, only to bite past its succulent chocolaty exterior and find that instead of caramel and nougat it’s filled with shit and more shit. Those two wild pitches were bad enough, but you had to follow them up by throwing Rod Barajas a fastball that was so down the pipe it even managed to clog my toilet several hundred miles away? Ugh. I’d go on with the feces metaphors, but I have to go mop up my bathroom floor.
Henry was bad, but even more annoying was AJ Burnett striking out 10 Nationals over 8 effective innings. Sure, maybe the Good AJ half of Burnett’s split pitching personality disorder showed up today, but if you’re not going to hit him, at least make sure that he hits himself in the eye socket with a baseball. That seems pretty easy.
Were there good things to take away from today’s game? I suppose. Edwin Jackson pitched well. Ryan Zimmerman and Adam LaRoche both looked good in their returns from injury. No National horribly mangled their body in any way. Still though, it was a very disappointing loss to Pittsburgh, and not just because any loss to Pittsburgh would cause the Nationals to all commit seppuku if they lived by the samurai code of honor.
With the Braves victory over the Cubs tonight, the Nats are now in a virtual tie for first place atop the NL East. With the Phillies loss to the Mets tonight, they are now in a virtual tie with the Pirates for “Most Mediocre Team in Pennsylvania.” So that’s a cheering thought, at least.