August 29, 2010: Washington Nationals vs St Louis Cardinals


Super brief intro: This is a guest post from Bobby, a college buddy of Maggie’s, and honorary “First Lady”.  We might look into doing more of these guest posts in the future…

View from the Stadium

Greetings FLOB fans — my name is Bobby (@bobfrankpat), and since neither Maggie nor Ashley went to Sunday’s game, I’ll be filling in for them with a recap. Also, since I’m not technically a “lady” (although my 7th grade football coach might argue otherwise), the blog for just tonight will be changing its name to “The First Ladies (and First Dude) of Baseball.”

Also, it’s probably best to say up front that I’m a lifelong Boston Red Sox fan (and have the Mike Greenwell “Friend of the Green Monster” baseball card to prove it), so I didn’t really have a dog into today’s fight. But, given the rule that you always root for the hometown team and that having the Red Sox beat the Cardinals in the World Series twice give me plenty of practice rooting against St. Louis clearly put me on the side of the Nats this game.

Game: #131 – Nationals vs. Cardinals
Starting Pitchers: John Lannan (#31, 6-6, 5.23) vs. Adam Wainwright (#50, 17-9, 2.18)
Final Score: Nationals: 4, Cardinals: 2
Nats New Record: 56-75
Play and Player of the Game: John Lannan. I got a text from Maggie during the game saying that Lannan hadn’t pitched this well in a while, and the guy certain put his “I’m going to be somebody” pants on today. One earned run over 7 2/3 innings on 93 pitches, and while there was some touch-and-go moments (2 on with 1 out in the 1st and the 4th in particular) he looked strong. Plus, he turned a bloop hit into a 2-RBI double to both help his own cause and make Matt Holliday look confused and a little afraid chasing after the ball when it got away from him.
Favorite Non-Baseball Moment: If you were watching at home, you probably had little idea how uncomfortably hot it was at the game. We had seats out in the sun, and even with plenty of water to drink, I still felt like a Happy Meal left under the heat lamp for far too long. At the end of the 2nd, I think my entire section got up and ran for the shade of the concourse, each sporting a healthy amount of back sweat. I’m no scientist, but if we could somehow turn perspiration into electric power, we could have lit up Topeka for a week.
So, at some point, we have the swell idea of moving to seats up under the middle deck, and believe me, it was well worth it. Still good view of the game, plus we felt like we had a better chance of not spontaneously combusting. Which we didn’t. Thankfully.
Who Was There: Thousands of sweat soaked fans and not Ashley and Maggie
Where Did We Sit
: Before the move – halfway up on the lower level, about  10 yards into the outfield. After the move – corner section of the outfield, and in the wonderful, wonderful shade.
What Did We Eat: Dog. Beer. Peanuts. Water. I know many people who appreciate the food options at Nats Park, but for traditionalists like me, all those fancy food items just make the hot dog line longer. It’s worth noting that the ice cream vendors had a banner day today – I think the person running the gelato stand made enough to send his kid to Yale.
President’s Race: Before we get to the actual race, I realized something recently — Teddy can never win. At its heart, the president’s race is just 4 people in massively entertaining president’s costumes running half way around the field in what is probably a fixed race (when the scandal breaks, odds are we’ll start calling him “Shoeless” George Washington), which after a while (3-4 years) could lose its spunk. But with Teddy still riding a lifetime win-loss record of 0-forever, the fact that he could win gives some sort of overarching narrative to the race and makes it more compelling over the long haul. Even today, there was some tension as to if today was the day that Teddy would break the streak and win, and that if you take that tension away, the race loses something.

And back to today’s race. I don’t know who won, but at the end they all took out posters with a “double rainbow” reference – to which the stadium announcer said with a confused tone “Okay! Whatever that means!”  Nice to see that the Nationals staff are keeping up with the latest in internet memes. If you’re not, here’s a helpful video:

Other Observations:
– It was Pups in the Park day by the Washington Humane Society. Just a wonderful contribution to the game, including the Fan of the Game competition (see photo below). I was really hoping we’d see the kiss came come out for the occasion, but I’m guessing they’ll save that for next time.
-I don’t attend enough games to know this, but it seemed like the Presidents lingered a little bit in the stands today – including Jefferson and Abe just randomly taking a load off in an empty section and watching the game.
– You know a pitcher (in this case, Adam Wainwright) is in for a bad day when the lead off guy (Adam Kennedy) absolutely crushes two balls that sailed just foul during his at-bat. Wainwright looked shaky all day (high pitch counts, Nats hitting lots of balls for power) which seems to be a trend in recent days. All that, though, didn’t dissuade the Cardinals fan in my section from shouting “Come on, Waino!” — which, if you’re keeping score at home, is about ten notches higher on the lazy nickname scale as “A-Rod” but still below retired great Fred McGriff’s nickname, “Fred.”
-The scorer blew a couple of error calls today that would have made things look a little rosier for Wainwright, including Holliday’s bobble, which cost them a run. Given the talent of today’s ball-player, if you can touch a ball, you should be able to make a play on it, and the fact that more errors aren’t given is rather surprising.

Pups in the Park


Tom hanging out

Thanks for letting me fill in, and Go Red Sox!


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6 Responses to “August 29, 2010: Washington Nationals vs St Louis Cardinals”

  1. rfpmcmahon Says:

    I don’t know how I feel about being an “honorary first lady.” I would have preferred “First Dude” or “First Hombre.”

  2. NOVA Curmudgeon Says:

    Wow, I’ve attended a whole lot of games Maggie missed and never got asked to be “First Dude.” We know where I stand now!

    Btw.. I like your writing style Bobby.

    Maggie’s Dad

    • Maggie Says:

      Hey dad – if you want to be a “first dude”, feel free to write a guest post for the next game you go to that I don’t attend. 🙂

  3. Score Board Says:

    Strasburg’s Tommy John surgery Friday (AP)…

    I found your entry interesting to I’ve added a Trackback to it on my weblog :)…

  4. Dave at Nats News Network Says:

    Hi. I’m updating my roster of Nats bloggers and if you’d like to be included in voting for our post-season awards, please contact me at natsnewsnetwork at gmail. i can give you some more information about the group.

    keep up the good work.
    Nats News Network

  5. Jake Moore Says:

    I’m so tired of St. Louis fair weather fans. You don’t like them when they struggle, you don’t deserve to follow them when they are world champions.

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