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Nats' magic number: 11
September 11, 2016 [LINK / comment]
Nationals edge Phillies again
The Washington Nationals are being economical in the effort exerted to win games. This afternoon, they beat the Phillies by a score of 3-2 to take the series three games to one. A single by Trea Turner and a double by Daniel Murphy in the first inning gave them a 1-0 lead that lasted until the seventh inning, when the Phillies tied it. In the bottom of that inning, Anthony Rendon hit an RBI double and later scored on a wild pitch. That extra run proved invaluable, as the Phillies scored again in the eighth inning. Gio Gonzalez got his 11th win of the year, going seven full innings. With Stephen Strasburg out for at least a couple weeks, Gio will play a crucial role in the pitching rotation.
Last night, Max Scherzer pitched a very good game, but he took too many pitches to get out of innings, so he was replaced during the seventh inning. With two runners on base in the eighth inning, Bryce Harper swung hard and hit his 24th home run of the year. It landed in the Nats' bullpen, only a few feet from the foul pole. That was the only scoring play in the game. Final score: 3-0.
With only 19 games left to play in the regular season, the Nationals enjoy a commanding 9-game lead over the New York Mets, with a magic number of just 11. In the Mets-Nats series that begins tomorrow, the Mets will have to win all three games to have any chance at all at capturing the division title.
Chaos in the AL East
Things are much more interesting in the in American League East Division, where the Boston Red Sox surged ahead of the Toronto Blue Jays, taking two of three games in the weekend series in Toronto. Yesterday the Blue Jays won, but today the Red Sox won again, as David Ortiz hit a three-run homer which provided the decisive edge in the Red Sox' 11-8 win. It was his 535th career homer, putting him in front of Jimmy Foxx and just one behind Mickey Mantle...
Meanwhile, the Baltimore Orioles are holding their own, tied for second place with the Blue Jays, two games behind the Red Sox. But the big surprise is the New York Yankees, who have played spectacularly ever since they parted ways with Alex Rodriguez and other ancient stars last month. They are now just four games behind the Red Sox in the divisional race, and cannot be discounted as a possible divisional winner. Who would have believed that in July?
Last year after I saw a game at Rogers Centre, the Toronto Blue Jays began a hot streak and ended up winning a divisional title for the first time in over 20 years. This year, after I took a tour of Fenway Park, the Boston Red Sox began a hot streak, moving into sole possession of first place. Coincidence? YOU be the judge!
7/9 of perfection
Yesterday in Miami, Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Rich Hill had a perfect game going through seven complete innings, and then was replaced by a reliever. WTF??? Manager Dave Roberts explained that finger blisters might have taken Hill out of service, and the Dodgers can't afford to lose him as the postseason race heats up. See MLB.com. That situation should be familiar to those who follow the Washington Nationals.
Citizens Bank Park pix
I have added thirteen (13) new photos that I took last week to the Citizens Bank Park page, including this (rather cloudy) exterior shot:
Citizens Bank Park exterior southwest entrance, on the third base side. The statue is of Mike Schmidt, who played his entire career with the Phillies, 1972-1989. He had a lifetime total of 548 home runs.
Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 12 Sep 2016, 12: 03 AM
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Hits on this page (single blog post) since July 2, 2007:
Culture & Travel
Science & Technology
This (or that) year's
January 10, 2016 ~ Cooperstown calls Griffey, Piazza
January 17, 2016 ~ ABC field trip to Highland (& Bath!) County
January 21, 2016 ~ R.I.P. Glenn Frey
January 26, 2016 ~ Sweet Briar College is saved!
January 31, 2016 ~ Presidential campaign begins
February 6, 2016 ~ Fall bird migration season 2015
February 20, 2016 ~ Life bird: Virginia Rail!
February 21, 2016 ~ 2016 primaries: populists propel polarization
March 10, 2016 ~ Yes, another Wrigley Field update!
March 26, 2016 ~ Trump triumphs, Republican Party implodes
April 4, 2016 ~ Opening Day(s) in America, 2016! (& Sportsman's Park update)
April 18, 2016 ~ R.I.P. Alan L. Clem
April 21, 2016 ~ Flying out to So. Dak. (& back)
April 30, 2016 ~ Trump & Clinton take commanding leads
April 30, 2016 ~ Migration season reaches peak
May 7, 2016 ~ Trump secures victory; Sanders fights on
May 21, 2016 ~ ABC field trip to Reddish Knob
June 7, 2016 ~ ABC field trip to Highland County
June 9, 2016 ~ FOD [first-of-decade] Prothonotary Warblers!
June 14, 2016 ~ Birding on Hite Hollow Road
June 16, 2016 ~ Holy $#!+ -- Nationals win big showdown with Cubs
July 1, 2016 ~ Nationals sweep the Mets, widen NL East lead
July 3, 2016 ~ Kentucky Warblers, and more!
July 8, 2016 ~ Soras breeding in the Valley!
July 13, 2016 ~ Redistricting reform movement is growing
July 16, 2016 ~ The Nationals' starting rotation
August 5, 2016 ~ New page: Stadium profiles!
August 7, 2016 ~ Magical mushroom tour*
September 7, 2016 ~ To the northeast: Baseball road trip, 2016
September 18, 2016 ~ East by Northeast: Big city scenery travelogue
September 25, 2016 ~ Nationals win National League East Division
September 27, 2016 ~ Lucky! 13 warblers on Betsy Bell Hill
October 2, 2016 ~ Nationals' regular season ends on a high note
October 5, 2016 ~ Shenandoah National Park birding (II)
October 14, 2016 ~ Nationals flinch, Dodgers advance to NLCS
October 14, 2016 ~ Shenandoah National Park getaway
October 16, 2016 ~ World War II aircraft show (II)
October 25, 2016 ~ Holy cow: Cubs beat Dodgers, win NL pennant!
November 3, 2016 ~ The Cubs win the World Series!!!
November 4, 2016 ~ New month arrives, & new birds too
November 6, 2016 ~ Campaign 2016 grinds to a nasty, ugly end
Blog highlights have been compiled for the years 2010-2012 thus far, and eventually will be compiled for earlier years, back to 2002.
The "home made" blog organization system that I created was instituted on November 1, 2004, followed by several functional enhancements in subsequent years. I make no more than one blog post per day on any one category, so some posts may cover multiple news items or issues. Blog posts appear in the following (reverse alphabetical) order, which may differ from the chronological order in which the posts were originally made:
- Wild birds (LAST)
- Science & Technology
- Latin America
- Culture & Travel
- Canaries ("Home birds")
- Baseball (FIRST)
Also see: My blog practices.
Blog errata (Nobody's perfect.)