Last Night In Woodbridge

With some luck, some timely hitting, and great pitching, the Potomac Nationals closed out their six-game homestand with a 2-1 victory that featured a scary/bizarre finish.

Anthony Gallas stroked a two-out single to left fielder J.P. Ramirez, who like most LFs, doesn’t have the plus arm. Barrelling in from second base, however, was Giovanny Urshela, a stocky infielder who doesn’t have plus speed. Urshela beat the throw. Though he went in feet first, Urshela collided head-to-helmet with catcher David Freitas, and crumpled at the point of contact.

Freitas, who had dropped the ball, picked it up and tagged Urshela out. Game over. A few minutes later, Urshela got up amid the surreal scene of the Potomac players celebrating the win while coaches, umpires, and fans nervously waited to see if the 20-year-old was okay. He received the respectful cheer as he walked up and away.

It was sour moment amid an otherwise sweet pitcher’s duel. The Indians’ #29 prospect Matt Packer was a late insert, recently recalled from the Arizona League after a couple of rehab outings. He thew three perfect innings with three strikeouts.

Nathan Karns took the hill for Potomac and turned in his fourth quality start in his last five appearances, giving up the lone Mudcat run on three hits and a walk while striking out five. He retired the leadoff batter in six of seven innings.

As the lede hinted, Potomac got a little luck in this one. After a J.P. Ramirez single in the sixth (the first of two on the night), Francisco Soriano launched a would-be flyout to left-center that Carlos Moncrief lost in the twilight. It fell in for a triple that tied the game. Blake Kelso would follow with a sac fly for what proved to be the gamewinner.

These two teams meet again on August 20-23, which bears mention because in addition to the play at the plate in the 9th, tempers flared in the 7th when shortstop Jason Martinson upended his counterpart Tony Wolters to break up a double play. While certainly rough, the play looked clean. Perhaps Wolters took exception to Martinson NOT saying something as he walked away.

Drew Storen made his third appearance in the 8th, working around a one-out error by Kelso with a little help from Carolina baserunner Delvi Cid, who kept going from first to third on a groundout to first baseman Stephen King, apparently missing either that the ball didn’t go through or the coach signalling him to retreat to second. Instead, King fired across the diamond for your “routine” 3-A-5 double play.

Neil Holland, fresh from his return from Syracuse, pitched the ninth and gave up the two hits that created the play at the plate, but got the save.

With an off day today, the P-Nats head up 95 to visit the Blue Rocks for a four-game set from Wednesday to Saturday before returning to the Pfitz next Monday.

Author: Luke Erickson

Since 2009, Luke Erickson has been chief writer, editor, and bottle-washer of Potomac is his home base as a season-ticket holder, but he has visited every affiliate north of Florida at least once, with multiple trips to Hagerstown and Harrisburg.

4 thoughts on “Last Night In Woodbridge”

  1. What’s the word on Rendon’s injury? Last I heard it was a “partial” broken bone in his ankle. Shouldn’t that have healed by now…’s been 3 months. Any info is appreciated.

    1. The official word is that he’s supposed to be back late this month/early next month, but that edict was issued shortly after Rendon’s infamous interview with a Houston newspaper in which he thought he was done for the year.

      There is no such thing as a “partial” fracture. There is, however, what’s known as an incomplete fracture. That’s one in which the bone is broken but it’s still in one piece. There has been reference to “a procedure,” which I believe to be the insertion of pins to set the bone. As with any ankle injury, the broken bone is actually the least of his problems; it’s the damage to the ligaments that matters most. It takes about 6-8 weeks for a closed reduction (no surgery) to heal, but it’s more like 8-10 weeks with an open reduction. If he was booted, the PT time after the bone is healed should be shorter, but it’s still likely to be at least four weeks.

      All of this is conjecture based on my personal knowledge/experience (my left fibula was #7 of #11 bones broken, not counting teeth). Without knowing exactly what was done, it’s a guess, perhaps educated, but still a guess. I will say this much: I expect him to play in the GCL first, Hagerstown second; I don’t expect him to return to Potomac this season.

      1. Have we heard anything about Giolito’s signing status? Can’t wait to see this kid, assuming we can sign him in the next couple of days…

        Question is will $3M be enough to sign him. That’s roughly what we have to spend before losing draft picks, which I doubt the Nats will give up.

        1. No. And we probably won’t until Friday night, which I’ll do my best to pass along, but I’ll be in Aberdeen to cover the Doubleday-Ironbirds game.

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