Mrs. RR and I traveled to Woodbridge, VA on July 4th to watch the Blue Rocks take on the Potomac Nationals. We actually live about two blocks from the Iwo Jima Monument in Arlington, which is supposedly a great place to watch the fireworks, as it has a great view of the monuments, but some plans changed at the last minute and we decided we didn't want to deal with the heat and the crowds. (How a baseball game is different from this, I'm not sure.)
The game had a big crowd, and we didn't have great seats. There was much patriotism displayed. The owner of the P-Nats is also the team's 1B coach, and he spoke about three different times, in uniform, prior to the game. A rich guy living the dream.
We ended up seeing a dominant victory for the Rocks, who just absolutely destroyed the P-Nats. The rout was on early. The Blue Rocks led 9-0 after three innings, and had the bases loaded and no outs in the top of the 4th, all while John Lamb was mowing down hitter after hitter. Lamb retired the first 8 hitters, and the 9th reached via an error. (Romak didn't have a great game at 3B.) Lamb surrendered a few weak singles in the 4th, but finished with a final line of 6.2 IP, 3 Hits allowed, 10 strike outs and zero walks.
As we drove down to the game, I did my best to tell my wife about the more interesting players on the Rocks, including Colon ("they say he's like Derek Jeter") Myers, and mostly, all the random stuff about The Hoz/Hos (can't remember which way its spelled) I could remember. Hosmer didn't disappoint, hitting towering home runs in the first and second innings. I'll spare you my fake scouting of Myers (who also had a good game) and only say he looked extremely comfortable at the plate.
RF Nick Francis also had a nice game, hitting a homer and three walks, while C Salvador Perez added 2 2Bs and 2 singles. Seriously, had Adrian Ortiz and Rey Navarro not gone 0-8 combined at the bottom of the order, the Royals might have scored 20 runs.
A quick note on the Pftizner Stadium, home of the P-Nats: much smaller and basic and spartan than I'd expected, given that it's in suburban Northern Virginia. 90% of the stadium seating was metal bleachers. (No seats are covered) It did offer the intimate feel that you'd expect from a A-ball park and the semi-famous DC food landmark of Ben's Chili Bowl is sold at the park, but overall it was a bit disappointing.
The dugouts at the Pfitz are just as basic. Two metal bleachers.
Random Royals warming up, with Adrian Ortiz visualizing his 0-5 to come and Dyson, I think, visualizing my wife. Dyson by the way was robbed of a double down the line and was also involved in a very close play at 1st on another grounder.
Wil Myers generally walked around like he owned the place. He's not hard to spot on the Rocks. Definitely stands out.
Hosmer. Big guy.
Hosmer was the Cheerwine K-Man of the game. If he struck out, the fans would get a $1 dollar Cheerwine slushy. He didn't. He was about to homer again.
You will remember this blurry photo of Wil Myers for the rest of your life.
Uncle Slam. The Nationals have an eagle mascot (Screech) they use instead of Uncle Slam, which makes no sense to me. Uncle Slam is awesome.