Thursday, April 3, 2008


The Nationals completed their successful series against the Phillies today, finishing a stretch in which they took two out of three games from Philadelphia, including their Home Opener. This entire sequence of events took place to the sonorous soundtrack of boos from loyal Philadelphians, eager to jump on each and every mistake and error (including four today) committed by their “beloved” Phillies.

The Nationals won their two games in the traditional nine innings, while it took the Phillies ten full innings to finally subdue the scrappy Nats in their lone series victory. Even in that win, Philadelphia’s Jayson Werth resorted to cowardly non-swinging to walk home the winning run. The Nats, by contrast, won their contests by using their bats in the originally intended manner: to hit baseballs. Whether it was a doubles-rich 11-6 series-opening triumph or a Ryan-Zimmerman-clutch-homer-aided 1-0 squeaker, the Nationals eschewed cowardly walk-drawing for true baseball action. The result: a successful steal of a pair of wins at Citizens Bank Ballpark. That and an identical record as the World Champion Boston Red Sox (again, draw your own conclusions. We have.).

Thus the Nats become the last or second-to-last team in the National League to lose a game (depending on when the Brewers finished up folding to the Cubs in a pathetically meager nine innings). This compares favorably to last season, when it took them one game to lose their first game. It compares even more favorably when you consider that the Nats did not secure their first series win last season until May 11-13. That's some tangible, completely objective progress. So watch out, St. Louis Cardinals, you’re next. The question is: will there be anyone there to see you get swept?

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