Nats – Orioles; awesome weekend of interleague play

Break out the brooms again Beantown, as the Nats stormed into town and swept three from the Red Sox.  Strong starting pitching was on display all weekend highlighted by Stephen Strasburg’s 13 strikeouts in 6.1 innings on Friday.  The Nats continue to lead the AL East by two over Atlanta and head off next to Toronto to play the Jays.

Closer to home, the O’s roughed up Philly relief pitching for walk-off game winners on Saturday (Adam Jones) and Sunday (Matt Wieters)  and took 2 of 3 from the Phils.  This was great work by both the locals as their series victories over the other club’s rival teams helped each other in the standings.  Of note were the consecutive sellouts in Camden Yards for both weekend games.  These were largely due to the influx of many Philly fans who made their way down the I-95 corridor.  While Mr. Angelos, must enjoy the revenue of the additional ticket sales, having your park overrun by the opposing team was a bit of a concern.  On second thought, O’s fans can relax because the situation with the Phillies, and to a lesser extent the Red Sox and Yankees invading your park will take care of itself as the team continues to get better.  When you get to a point where you begin to dominate regularly, the problem goes away completely, as was the case in Washington with the Capitals.  You just need a sustained run by the home club.  A few losing seasons for the big payroll teams couldn’t hurt, but should not be expected.

On everyone’s mind is the second O’s – Nats series coming up in two weeks, but there’s a lot more interleague work for both clubs in advance.  For the O’s, after the next series at home against the Pirates, the advantage shifts to the NL clubs with six straight on the road against Atlanta and the Mets.  Something has to be done to level the playing field when AL teams play protracted stretches in NL parks because of the disadvantages of requiring your pitchers to hit without having done so in spring training or all regular season.  But that’s another battle for another day.

About Brian Penn

Avid sports fan and golf nut. I am a lifelong resident of the Washington D.C. area and love to follow the local teams. Also worked as a golf professional in the Middle Atlantic PGA for several years and am intrigued by the game to no end. I love to play and practice and am dedicated to continual improvement.
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