August 4, 2005
Are the dark days finally over? Topped off by Brad Wilkerson's grand slam in the eighth inning (the team's first grand slam since they moved to Washington), the Nationals trounced the Dodgers at home in RFK Stadium tonight, 7-0. The amazing John Patterson threw 13 strikeouts (accounting for every single player in the Dodgers' starting lineup), going the full nine innings. [What's more, he gave up only four hits and zero walks! Patterson had thrown ten strikeouts against the Astros on July 24, but still lost the game, 4-1.] This was the first time the Nats have shut out an opponent since July 19, the first time they have scored as many as seven runs since July 8, and was their biggest margin of victory since May 22! This the first series that the Nationals have won since early July, when they swept the Cubs at Wrigley. Tonight's huge victory was exactly the kind of tonic the Nationals needed to shake off those demons of July and resume the pursuit of the Braves for the lead in the NL East. How sweet it is!
The 1912 version diagram on the Fenway Park page has been revised based on new photos sent to me by Bruce Orser. As a preview of what's in store on this Web site for future months, I have revised the thumbnail diagrams for all of the "Classic Era" (1909-1915) ballparks to conform to the new standard with home plate at a consistent location, and center field at the top. You can readily compare those mini-diagrams on the Diagram introduction, which has been expanded with a more elaborate explanation.
[UPDATE] Baltimore Manager Lee Mazzilli was fired today, getting the blame for his team's downward spiral since mid-June. Under Sam Perlozzo (ex-bench coach) as interim manager, the Orioles managed to beat the Angels in Anaheim today, 4-1. Mazzilli's dismissal is too bad, because the team had gotten off to such a great start early in the season, dominating all rivals. Owner Peter Angelos had refrained from dismissing other recent managers in the middle of the season, so he is obviously very annoyed by his team's declining fortunes. See MLB.com. I hope this doesn't mean he will become even more intransigent in negotiations over television rights and other issues related to the Nationals.