A One Way Ticket to The Big Leagues
Rookie catcher Jesus Flores was officially welcomed to "the show" last night when he produced big time with his first walk off situation. The Nats trailed by one in the bottom of the 9th with two outs and runners on 1st and 3rd. With a 1-1 count Flores nailed a DOUBLE down the left field line to score Ryan Langerhans and Wily Mo Pena. The Nationals won their 6th straight game against the Marlins at RFK.
Flores struggled a bit with pop ups during the game (he missed one in the 4th and another in the 8th, which was a very questionable call) and was charged with two errors. Those unimportant mistakes were long forgotten as his teammates mobbed him on the field after his game winning hit. Our number 3 was GRINNING from ear to ear! Welcome to the show Mr. Flores, we hope you stay for a long time. Flores has sure been making people rethink their original plan to send him to Harrisburg next year for double A ball. We just don't see that happening. For a young guy to be able to call a great game, recover from two fluke errors, and win the game in grand style is more than the Nats could have ever hoped for. We have no doubt that Flores will continue to grow as a player with more big league experience, he is a future All-Star. Did you see his rocket arm at work tonight?! Lets not forget about his MASSIVE home run over the center field wall on Saturday night. He is consistently proving that he can be trusted in clutch situations, 11 of Flores's 21 RBI's have come in late innings. Flores was rewarded for his dramatic hit with a shaving cream pie in the face during his interview with Debbie Taylor, courtesy of Zimmerman and Schneider. Hopefully that will help Jesus forget about those silly mistakes and allow him to focus on the great successes he has had this year.
I guess the game wasn't all about Flores, some other guys on the team did well too...
Shawn Hill pitched six solid inning and earned a quality start. He did give up 3 runs on 11 hits though, which we found a bit unusual for him. He struck out six and walked none. He threw 97 pitches 71 of them strikes.
Ryan Zimmerman doubled in the 3rd to score Nook Logan. He has now produced at least one RBI in 13 of his last 17 games.
Felipe Lopez seems to be hustling more and more. He beat out the tag at first twice last night to get on base at key moments. Way to go Felipe! Felipe also scored last night off of Austin Kearns's single in the 1st.
We saw Arnie Munoz relief pitch for the first time. He did well and we are excited to see more. Luis Ayala gave us a solid performance, and Chris Schroder closed the 9th beautifully.
The Nationals took the series from the Marlins with a walk off 4-3 win.
Where was everybody last night? The crowd of less than 16,000 was the smallest yet since baseball has returned to DC. Lets get out there people and watch the Nats SWEEP tomorrow!