Despite the fact that the Orioles and Nationals are in different Leagues, there’s still a rivalry. With teams in such close proximity, there has to be. You don’t see the Ravens/Skins rivalry as much unless they are playing in the regular season, but if they met in the Super Bowl it’d definitely be a big deal.
But I digress. O’s and Nats fans definitely have a rivalry. Nationals Park and Camden Yards are both packed with fans in red as well as fans in orange when the teams meet. On Memorial Day (God bless all those who have served and those who are serving), the Orioles defeated the Nationals in Nationals Park, but on Tuesday the Nats got the W. Both teams won their respective games by a significant margin: the O’s 6-2, the Nats 9-3.
The pitchers on the winning teams played exceptionally well. On Monday, Jason Hammel only allowed two runs (the Nats only runs in the game) through eight innings. The win boosted his record to 6-0 against the Nats.
On Tuesday, the Nationals started their 2012 Minor League Pitcher of the Year, Nathan Karns. Though his nerves were intensified as he waited for the rain delay to pass ("’Everyone is going to be nervous for the first time,’" Karns said. "’I was really anxious. I just hate sitting around waiting for my turn with the rain delay. It kind of made the buildup a little more. Once I got out there and got that first inning through, it felt great.’"), Karns pitched extremely well. He gave up 3 runs, but pitched until he walked two O’s back to back in the fifth. He trotted off the field to a standing ovation from Nationals fans.
Nationals’ first baseman, Adam LaRoche hit a 3 run homer in the first to put the Nats up 3-0. In the 2nd, Karns gave up an RBI double to Orioles’ Matt Weiters. In the fourth, Karns allowed to single homers, but the Nats retaliated with some home runs of their own. Tyler Moore knocked an 0-2 pitch out of the park which also drove in LaRoche who had been walked. When Moore hit the ball, I seriously didn’t think it was going to make it over the wall. Immediately following, Bernadina knocked one out of the park. LaRoche hit another homer later on and Bernadina hit an RBI single in the 8th to close it out.
The Orioles and Nationals meet again tonight at 7:05 at Oriole Park at Camden Yards and again tomorrow night, same time same place. Make sure you watch those games to find out the winner of the Battle of the Beltway!
Read more about these games here: