Nats-Giants NLDS Game 2 Winners & Losers

Handing out labels following the longest game in MLB playoff history, an 18-inning, six hour-and-23 minute 2-1 loss to San Francisco.

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Winners

Jordan Zimmermann — Fresh off of a no-hitter, he came within one out of a shutout in a near-must-win playoff situation. What a stud.

Anthony Rendon — Started off 4-4, driving in the Nats only run. Also stole a base and played sharp at third. Also a stud.

Tyler Clippard, Matt Thornton, Jerry Blevins, Craig Stammen and Rafael Soriano — Combined for seven innings of scoreless relief.

Ryan Zimmerman — Got a pinch-hit basehit.

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Losers

The entire lineup, aside from Rendon — Denard Span, Jayson Werth, Adam LaRoche, Ian Desmond, Bryce Harper, Wilson Ramos and Asdrubal Cabrera went 4-53, by my count. AssCab did double, FWIW, but he also got himself thrown out for arguing balls and strikes — in the playoffs. This team only has three runs through 27 innings.

Drew Storen — I feel bad for him, about as bad as you can feel for someone in a sports context and non-injury situation. But he came in and blew it, like he did two years ago. (For extra sadness, read Barry Svrluga on Storen’s redemption from just a few days ago.)

Matt Williams — I didn’t disagree with him pulling ZNN for Storen at the time, and I won’t question it now. But it was his call, and it didn’t work. Also, that ejection was weird.

Nats fans — I don’t blame folks for leaving early, it was a six-hour game in 40-degree weather after all, but it’s not a good look.

Home plate umpire Vic Carapazza — The Nats didn’t lose because of him, but he did suck. The strike zone was all over the place, and two outs in the ninth inning of a complete game shutout is a hell of a time to start squeezing a guy. Karma’s a bitch. (Update: This is an awesome look at Carapazza squeezing ZNN in the 9th.)

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Tanner Roark — After a great season as the fifth starter, he was kept out of the playoff rotation and was the last man out of the bullpen. Pitched a scoreless 17th before giving up a solo shot in the 18th. Tough breaks, dude.

Game 3 is in San Francisco on Monday, Doug Fister vs. Madison Bumgarner. The Nats must win to stay alive.

Redskins-Seahawks Predictions

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Congrats to WFY for knowing that Washington didn’t stand a chance against the New York Football Giants. Now he gets to make a guest post!

Here are our crackerjack staff’s completely scientific predictions for this week’s game. Make yours down in the comments. Whichever reader is closest to the actual outcome gets to be a published author on this here weblog.

Chris Mottram: Redskins, 27-24

The Redskins somehow win just so Kirk Cousins can regain his crown as the Preferred Quarterback of Every Sports Talk Radio Caller. Go Nats. Go O’s.

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Is D.C. a Baseball Town Now?

The guest post parade marches on! Here with a look at which team owns D.C. is Mr. Irrelevant contributing writer Bryan Frantz.

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Is Washington, D.C. a baseball town now? No, not quite.

But D.C. is not nearly the football city it’s historically been. Fans aren’t necessarily shifting away from the Redskins; instead, it seems they’re paying more attention to the other teams.

The Wizards made the playoffs this past season, had a terrific offseason, have a young core to build around for years to come and are still salivating over the fantasy of Kevin Durant coming home to play in D.C. in just two years.

The Capitals missed the playoffs this past season, but they have a new coach and a new GM, they’ve had some degree of recent success (making it to the postseason counts) and they still have Alex Ovechkin.

D.C. United is back near the top of MLS after a terrible 2013, Ben Olsen just signed a contract extension, the team just posted the biggest increase in attendance in the league and America is gradually beginning to appreciate soccer as a whole in the wake of the World Cup.

The Mystics … well, the Mystics aren’t very good.

Then, of course, there are the Nationals.

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Nats Playoff Tickets Are 40% More Expensive Than 2012, Priciest in the NL

This post is provided by our friends at TiqIQ. Remember, you can always buy Nats tickets via Mr. Irrelevant Tickets!

After the heartbreak of 2012, the Nationals are back in the playoffs, and based on the average price for Nationals tickets to the NLDS, fans have higher expectations than two years ago. At an average price of $282 for their three games at Nationals Park, Nats fans are paying more than any other fans in the National League based on secondary market prices. At an average price of $199, the next most expensive tickets belong to the Dodgers. For Nats fans in San Francisco, they’ll be getting a deal, as SF Giants tickets for the NLDS have an average price of $177. The Cardinals are the only team in the NL with an average price below $100, at $93, according to TiqIQ.

Compared to 2012, the consensus is that the Nationals are a better and wiser team. Despite winning two less games this season than in 2012, the 2014 Nationals have playoff experience under their belt and no fear of the unknown. There’s also none of the Strasburg inning-limit nonsense. This season Strasburg has been a horse, pitching 215 innings and striking out 242 batters. Despite just 14 wins, Strasburg is the ace. He’s also arguably got a much better supporting staff behind him than two years ago. Nationals fans seem to be more confident as well, with average prices up almost 40% compared to 2012. Of the three games, today’s game one is by far the cheapest with an average price of $124 with the cheapest ticket going for $54. Saturday’s game has an average price of $183 and a get-in price of $90. At current prices, game three is the most expensive game of the series with an average price of $324. The cheapest ticket for that game is $69.

If prices are a predictor of what teams will go the deepest in the playoffs, the Nationals will be facing off against the Royals in the World Series. While the Nats are the top-priced ticket in the NL, after their 29-year drought, the average price for Royals tickets at Kaufmann stadium is $361 … and rising. At $440, their opening game on Sunday is the most expensive tickets to an LDS game in the last five years. The next highest LDS matchup was a 2011 game in Tampa Bay between the Rays and Rangers. If the Nationals and Giants series goes to a deciding fifth game, the current average price would make it the third most expensive NLDS game over the last three years, behind game three of the 2012 NLDS in Cincinnati and Game one of last years series in Pittsburgh.

Musings of a Drunk Redskins Fan

Here with a guest post for correctly predicting that the Redskins would destroy Jacksonville (those were the days!) is Mr. Irrelevant reader SiPhi, who may have been overserved.

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As I sit here, drunk and finally committing to writing this blog post, there are 1:18 seconds remaining in the 3rd quarter [of last week's Thursday night loss to New York]. Kirk Cousins just threw his 3rd fucking interception, which is something I will return to later on.

First, background on myself (because I know you Mr. I readers give so many shits about some asshole that guessed somewhat close to the final score). I was born in 1990, so I am a later generation Skins fan. My parents probably thought they were bringing me into the best possible situation for football fandom when the Skins won the Superbowl after the ’91 season, but instead I have been subjected to the Maylaysian Airlines of football teams.

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A Perfect 14-Song Playlist For The 2014 O’s Playoff Experience

Mr. Irrelevant reader ODA won a guest post for accurately predicting the Redskins’ opening loss at Houston. Here it go.

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Mix in a few new ones between “Thank God I’m a Country Boy” and “Orioles Magic” this October.

1. My Morning Jacket – “Holdin On to Black Metal”

You may recognize it as the newest addition to Camden Yards’ mix of “O”-themed sound bites, a list which also includes snippets of “Icky Thump” and that creepy Wizard of Oz chant. Jim James, leader of the legendary Louisville band, also bears a pretty remarkable resemblance to Wild Bill Hagy.

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Redskins-Giants Winners & Losers

Handing out labels following Skins games. This time a 45-14 home loss to the Giants.

Winners

Mottram brother Ryan — Look how joyful the pregame scene was for this young fan and the Moss man.

Losers

The Washington Redskins — What an all-around shitshow that was.

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Me — Apologies for not writing a real Winners & Losers post this week. It’s not that the game was so bad I don’t want to write about it, it’s just that Mottram brother Chris and his family are visiting, and I’d rather hang out with them than blog about the Skins. We did enjoy that Daily Show segment, though.

Redskins-Giants Predictions

NFL: Washington Redskins at New York Giants

Congrats to Mikeyvanilli for correctly picking that Washington would fall to Philly in a barnburner. Now he gets to make a guest post!

Moving on, here are our crackerjack staff’s completely scientific predictions for Sunday. Make yours down in the comments. Whichever reader is closest to the actual outcome gets to be a published author on this here weblog.

Chris Mottram: Redskins, 31-17

There are so many reasons why this game is difficult to predict — Cousins is still a bit of a mystery, the defense is wildly inconsistent, the secondary is without D-Hall, we don’t know how many points the secondary will cost Washington, and it’s on a Thursday. But it’s at home, and NY, by any statistical measurement, seems to be the worse 1-2 team.

JP Finlay: Redskins, 20-17

Not to be a downer, but once the Eagles made halftime adjustments, Cousins didnt look nearly as good. Take out the bomb to DeSean and the Helu screen, and that offense didn’t move the ball in the 2nd half. Seemed like Cousins didnt like pressure, and Coughlin will see that on film. So low scoring, but I think the Skins still win.

Matt Terl: Giants, 28-24

Honestly, I have no clue. I don’t even know what narrative would be the most Redskins at this point, so I’ll just assume the depleted defense and the perennially awful special teams will give up more points than the offense will score.

Jamie Mottram: Redskins, 27-20

I think the most Redskins thing would be for them to win this game and for Cousins to look good, therefore getting all of our hopes up before stumbling to a 5-11 season while being equal parts Bad Rex and Good Rex.

Andy Peden: Redskins, 27-20

Giants will not be able to run the ball like they did against Houston. Redskins will run the ball better than last week.

Jack Kogod: Redskins, 24-17

I don’t know how or why.

Todd Davis: Redskins, 38-17

The Redskins are one of the most difficult teams to support for so many reasons, but by fully embracing their heel turn in glorious fashion last week, I’m completely and unreservedly back on board (at least this week). The fightin’, the cheering injuries, the Gruden throwing in a fat lipper on national TV, the smack talk and the go-for-broke beauty of KC1 was as exciting as Savage turning after Hogan “groped” Miss Elizabeth or Tito Santana misplacing a Flying Burrito into Rick Martel.

We all know how these story lines set up and the Skins are perfectly positioned for a heel’s rampage before the inevitable fall. But for at least this week, the Giants will keep kayfabe and everyone’s new favorite villain (complete with offensive naming and a Danny the Brain manager to give heat to the Skins by giving out blankets and backhoes through the Original Americans Foundation) will absolutely roll.

Composite prediction: Redskins, 27-19

How Realistic Is KD-to-D.C.?

Here with a look at one of our favorite fantasies is Mr. Irrelevant contributing writer Bryan Frantz.

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Those of you watching the Redskins’ glorious 41-10 beatdown of the Jacksonville Jaguars last week may have seen Wizards point guard John Wall taking in the game at the same time as a very special guest.

Naturally, seeing reigning NBA MVP Kevin Durant at a Redskins game with the face of D.C. basketball, both decked out in Redskins gear, had some fans rather giddy. Perhaps excited enough to forget about the face of D.C. football getting hurt again? Continue reading

Mr. Irrelevant is a D.C. sports blog covering the Redskins, Nationals, Orioles, Wizards, Capitals, Terrapins and more.