Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Game 65: Nationals 7 Pirates 6

You thought they were going to win tonight, didn't you? Three runs in the first, and you thought they were going to win. Paul Maholm cruising through four, and you thought they were going to win. Maybe you got a bit worried when Ronnie Belliard homered in the fifth (I mean ... Ronnie Belliard?), but you felt better after Ryan Doumit hit his second homer of the night. "This is an easy one," you thought to yourself. The Dmitri Young homered in the seventh. "Why is there no one in the bullpen." Then Jesus Flores homered. "Who's Jesus Flores? Wait, why is Maholm still pitching?" Then Belliard homered again. "Oh, for the love of ..." Three homers in one inning. That'll kill hope. Ronnie Belliard singled in another run in the eighth. "I can't believe we're going to lose this game."

Baseball's a funny sport, though. A trip through the heart of the order in the bottom of the eighth inning lead to two runs and a new lead. "I knew we were going to win this one!" Then Elijah Dukes doubled. "Uh-oh." Before that thought even escaped, Lastings Milledge had homered. Some nights, you're just not meant to win. Those nights should never happen with three run leads against one of the worst teams in baseball. Never give the Pirates the benefit of the doubt. Never.