March 12, 2011: Washington Nationals vs. New York Yankees (Spring Training)

by

Zimmerman at bat
Game: Spring Training #14 – Nationals vs. Yankees
Pitching this Afternoon for the Nationals: John Lannan, Sean Burnett, Yunesky Maya
Final Score: Nationals – 6, Yankees – 5

Harper at bat
Inning of the Game: This was another 9th inning where the game was clinched.  Another team effort – Jesus Flores got on base, only to have Nyjer Morgan come in as a pinch runner.  Bryce Harper was brought in as a pinch hitter, and ended up drilled on the elbow and took his base.  Alberto Gonzalez was intentionally walked to load the bases (for reasons I still don’t quite understand – someone explain what the purpose of that might have been when the game was tied, and there was only one out)?  Derek Norris came in as a pinch hitter, and blasted one to center field – it bounced off the outfield and into the warning track.  Once Morgan crossed the plate, the rest of the guys on the base-path skipped touching all the bags, and just went home.  An excellent end to what was sometimes a nerve-wracking game.
Player of the Game: Michael Morse.  A 2-run homer to get the Nats out of the funk of being down by two in the first inning.  He had an RBI in the 7th before being taken out, and generally looked like a stud. 

The crowd watches BP
Where I sat: Section 209, up towards the top.  Not quite as high as last night’s game, and this time truly on the aisle seat.  The only bad bit being that this afternoon’s game was in full sun, and there was not a cloud in the sky, meaning that it was hot as heck, despite the temperature hovering around 68 degrees for the entire game.  I am glad that I took a break mid-game, went to the shade of the concession area and re-applied my sunscreen.
What I ate: I was very adventurous and got a chicken finger basket and water (to prevent dehydration).  The thing that made me sad about the chicken finger basket was that the “basket”, which included fries, had about a handful – not even a “side” of fries really.  It made me “homesick” for the baskets at Nationals Park which include more fries for about the same price.

Nationals dugout and the crowd.

Other Observations:
There were a ridiculous number of Yankees fans at today’s game.  So much so, that as another Nats fan walked past me into the aisle he said, “It’s like walking into enemy territory!”
– The girl who sang the national anthem was amazing.  Someone said that she’s 10 years old, and she had a great big voice for such a little girl.  I heard many people talking about how good she was.
– There was one inning (maybe the 7th?), where Austin Krum got on base (on balls), and Maya – pitching at that point – decided that he was going to take Krum out.  There was a near constant game of cat and mouse where Maya would throw to keep Krum on first, and then after being moved to second base, the throwing continued to keep him on his toes.  Combine this with Austin Romine’s extended at bat later on, and it made for a long inning.
– What made this a true “Yankees” game for me was the group of kids sitting in front of me.  They were hipster baseball fans, and they were definitely loud drunks.  They tried to start cheers for the Yankees players, and were constantly waving to their parents who were sitting 2 sections over.  They also kept trying to share the food that they bought that they didn’t like (and had just loudly denounced), like the bag of peanuts (which were “gross”), and the cone of cotton candy (which was “too sticky”).

(the rest of the album from this game can be seen here)

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