In light of the shocking news coming from Venezuela, on behalf of The Nats Blog I would like to say that our thoughts are with Wilson Ramos, his family, and his Washington Nationals family for a safe return. Ramos had a breakout season in 2011 and instantly became a fan favorite in Nationals Park as well as a key component to the team’s future. Lets hope for a happy ending.
In this installment of the Best Moments of the Washington Nationals 2011 season, we’ll remember May 20th, the first game of the Beltway Series where the Nationals beat the Orioles by a score of 17-5 in Baltimore.
Both teams entered the day owners of sub .500 records with the Nats at 21-23 and the Orioles at 19-24, but that didn’t downplay the intensity of this growing rivalry. What’s funny about this game is that four players who played vital roles in this matchup didn’t finish the season the team in Matt Stairs, Adam LaRoche, Jerry Hairston Jr., and starting pitcher Jason Marquis.
This game was actually close at one point, the two teams entered the top of the fifth inning with the Nationals holding a 6-5 lead but that’s when things went sour for the O’s. Jason Berken started the frame and preceded to hand LaRoche a leadoff walk, probably the worst thing a pitcher could do in any situation. Right on cue, Wilson Ramos then drove LaRoche in with a triple. A Danny Espinosa run scoring single and two run home runs by Roger Bernadina and Jayson Werth gave Washington a commanding 12-5 lead that they would not relinquish. Little did both teams know that the visitor’s offense was far from calling it a day. The Nats then scored one run in the 6th, 7th, and 8th innings as well as two in the 9th handing them a convincing 17-5 victory at Camden Yards.
The 17 runs scored set a Nationals record in a game that featured six Washington home runs off the bats of Espinosa, Bernadina, Werth (2), Ramos, and Laynce Nix. "We had a good night. We swung the bats extremely well," manager Jim Riggleman said. "We played good baseball, but we haven't had too many offensive nights where we really put a couple of games together. Hopefully, this will be the start of something."
The hitting clinic put on by the Nats came after the New York Mets shut them out in two consecutive games. However, the excitement of the 17-5 victory was short-lived as the Nationals then lost eight of their next nine games.
Player of the Game honors goes Wilson Ramos, who went 3 for 4 with a home run, 2 RBI, and 5 runs scored.