Photo by Cheryl Nichols / Nationals News Network
If there was a Nats game in Washington tonight, you never would have known it. It was no Opening Day take over Monday night at Nationals Park when the Phillies clinched their fourth consecutive National League East Division title, but it was pretty close.
Nats starter John Lannan wasn’t off his game. He pitched a strong 5 and 2/3 innings, but his night consisted of two blemishes compliments of Jayson Werth. Werth, who went 3-for-5 roped a solo home run into the left field stands in the third and a two-RBI double in the sixth off the Nats left-hander to bring the Phillies lead to 3-0.
Lannan’s decent night was in no way comparable to the complete game, one-hit, shut out pitched by NL Cy Young candidate Roy Halladay.
“We ran into a buzz saw tonight with Halladay but certainly we’re not satisfied with 67 wins,” manager Jim Riggleman said after the game.
Weather forecasts indicating poor weather for the evening combined with the expected influx of Philly Phaithful kept Washingtonians far away from the park and this particular game. Of the 14,309 in attendance, it’s safe to say more than 80 percent of those fans were not cheering for the home team.
The rain held out enough to simply shower the Navy Yard with a consistent mist, the game was played, Phillies fans got a night to remember, and Nationals fans and players alike got a night they would much rather forget for awhile.
“[It’s] kind of embarrassing when everyone in the stadium is clapping against you when you’re at home,” Nats shortstop Ian Desmond told reporters after the game.
Chants including “This is our house” and “We’re not leaving” sung by the hordes of out-of-towners summed up a dark day at the ballpark in Washington that ended in an 8-0 loss.
The Nats face the Phillies for game two of the series tomorrow night when right-hander Jason Marquis (2-9, 7.18) squares off against right-hander Roy Oswalt (13-13, 2.80) at 7:05.