April 13, 2008 [LINK / comment]
Lucky 13: Nationals finally win!
Maybe the 13th of the month is lucky when it falls on a Sunday. From Atlanta's perspective, it was certainly a bad omen when aging superstar ace Tom Glavine had to leave the game in the first inning. The Nats had a 5-0 lead going into the sixth inning, and the Braves closed the gap to 5-4 by the eighth inning. Chad Cordero made an appearance as a closer for the first time this year, and for the first two batters he was looking very good, just like in 2005. But then Yunel Escobar and Chipper Jones got on base, and Manny Acta took Chad out. It was fingernail-biting time, but the Nationals just barely hung on to win their first game since April 2. Whew! Jon Rauch got credited for the save with a single pitch, and Lastings Milledge got three hits, raising his average to above .300. Ryan Zimmerman and Ronnie Belliard made some superb infield plays. See MLB.com.
The MASN announcers noted that the last time the Expos/Nationals franchise lost nine in a row was in September 2000, but I consider that to be distinct from the club or team record.
I noticed on TV that several entire sections of the middle deck in the right field corner were completely empty. I think the Nationals need to refigure their seat pricing structure.
Milledge got a bad reputation in New York, but he comes across very well in interviews, and his performance at the plate thus far certainly meets or exceeds expectations. The future looks bright for the Nats.
Bosox jinx foiled
And while we're on the subject of curses and superstition, the Yankees found out about a Red Sox jersey (David Ortiz, to be exact) that was buried in concrete under the new Yankee Stadium by a construction worker whose loyalties are suspect. He now faces legal jeopardy. See Yahoo News; link via Bruce Orser.
Comcast customers who (like me) upgraded their cable TV service in response to their deal with MASN, through which we can now watch Nationals and Orioles games, can get a free long-sleeve shirt with the Washington Nationals logo on it just for asking. (Supplies are probably limited, so hurry!) I guess this means I can't say bad things about MASN any more.