Sep 1, 2012, 4:44 AM EST
Associated Press photo
Gio Gonzalez got a shaving cream pie to the face after his first career shutout.
Chants of “Let’s go Gio!” as the ninth inning began. A Gatorade shower and shaving cream pie to the face that came moments later. Thumping music in the clubhouse after another lopsided victory. And then applause from those remaining players watching the Braves blow a ninth-inning lead to the Phillies.
These are the sights and sounds of a pennant race, and Washington is smack-dab in the middle of one right now.
A 10-0 whitewashing of the Cardinals Friday night gave the Nationals as many wins as they posted in all of 2011 — one shy of the club record — with 31 games still to play. Atlanta’s meltdown shortly after extended Washington’s lead to 6 1/2 games and lowered the magic number for the NL East title to 25.
“We have a long ways to go, and we haven’t done anything yet,” Ryan Zimmerman cautioned. “But what we have done is give this city a baseball team to cheer for, and they’ve wanted that for a long time.”
COUNTDOWN TO OPENING DAY
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.
*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.
Follow us on Twitter
- Zimmermann solid, Moore on fire in Florida
- Matt Harvey returns to mound in Mets' spring game
- Escobar having stiff back examined by doctor
- Marlins spending lots of money off the field, as well as on it
- Nationals hit the road to face Braves
- Zimmerman passes first test at first base
- Rendon reflects on first full pro season
- Giants lose Hunter Pence to significant injury
- Scherzer "happy" with first start of spring
- Braves' starter to see Dr. James Andrews about injury