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In Another Rain Delay; Nats Lead, 7-2

[UPDATE, 7:00 p.m.] -- Game was just called. Officially, a 53-minute wait. Nats win! Nats win!

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[UPDATE, 6:23 p.m.] -- MLB rules requires umps to wait 30 minutes after a delay to call a game. This game was paused at 6:09 p.m., so I imagine the Nats' 7-2 win will become official at 6:39. The rain in the last few minutes has become ridiculous; not even the NFL would be playing in this weather. Puddles several inches deep have collected in foul territory, and in the shallow outfield, we've got something that resembles Lake Huron.

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[UPDATE, 6:13 p.m.] -- Unreal. In the bottom of the ninth, the Nats leading 7-2, the rain came down crazy and heavy. Right now, it's torrential. And we're in another rain delay. I'd expect this thing gets called within the next 30 minutes.

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[UPDATE, 4:47 p.m.] -- Estimated re-start time is 5 p.m. That would give us, approximately, a 2:10 rain delay. John Lannan (5 IP, 6 H, 1 ER) will be finished, obviously. So the Nats will need to hold their lead, over the final 12 outs, with their bullpen.

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This series in Florida has involved more radar-watching than baseball-watching. At this point, we're approaching a two-hour rain delay at misnomered the Land Shark Stadium, where dry land is the hardest thing to come by. Saturday, the Nats' 11-3 loss was delayed 2:34. And here, rain has interrupted play in the top of the sixth, the Nats leading the Marlins 7-1. It was 2:50 when play was halted.

Right now, the rain has stopped, but it seems temporary. Another weather system appears not far away... which means Washington could walk away with a rain-shortened win... or we could all be here well past 9 p.m., depending on the efficiency of Ron Villone Victor Garate et al.

Stay tuned.

By Chico Harlan  |  September 13, 2009; 4:34 PM ET
 
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Comments

One thing about long rain delays in Miami... you're not really inconveniencing the fans... since they're both at home.

Posted by: wigi | September 13, 2009 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Due to the rain delay, Lannan only gets 5IP, 6H, 1ER, 1BB, 1K. Into the bullpen, and so the adventure begins.
Posted by: BinM | September 13, 2009 5:01 PM
---------------
Clippard on, along w/Morse for Dunn @1B.

Posted by: BinM | September 13, 2009 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Oh, as BinM mentioned, forgot about Bernadina as a left-handed outfielder. He'll have competition as a backup for Morgan in center and the other outfield positions. But if he hits well enough given his fielding he may make it in. With the other left-handers on the way does that mean Willie is expendable?

A lot also depends on trades. Clearly getting solid starting pitching will be critical. They may have to give up something to get something. We'll have to see.

Right now Willingham has dropped 20 points or more on the batting average from the end of August. Seems kind of streaky? Dukes continues to improve and is the superior fielder.

Posted by: periculum | September 13, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

They take another series from the Marlins. Let it rain.

Posted by: periculum | September 13, 2009 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Would someone in authority care to comment as to Why on God's Earth it was SO IMPORTANT to try to play nine full innings in this relatively meaningless game in front of maybe 50 people at the end? I'd hate to be either team if one of their players was hurt seriously due to the unplayable conditions in this empty stadium. Chico, I'd love to hear the crew chief's version on this.

Posted by: LeeM9308 | September 13, 2009 7:10 PM | Report abuse

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (NJ) -- Forgive the parody of a wire service dateline but I was at today's game on a road trip from Nationals Park and it was fun if soggy (I caught a foul!)

By the time the game was called, there were probably more people in the press box than in the stands, much less in uniform for the two September-expanded teams.

There was a Hanley Ramirez bobblehead giveaway today as well. I doubt they gave out all 5,000 available. And, to continue the journalistic style of this post, a quote: As I was walking into the stadium I saw someone at a Bacardi concession stand at the bobblehead. "Thank you," I said, telling him that he'd saved me from opening the box with mine and then having to repack it for my flight back to D.C. "How does it look?" The woman behind the counter making mojitos responded instead, telling me, "well, this version of Hanley Ramirez has got a big head so it's a pretty accurate likeness."

Posted by: greggwiggins | September 13, 2009 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Would someone in authority care to comment as to Why on God's Earth it was SO IMPORTANT to try to play nine full innings in this relatively meaningless game in front of maybe 50 people at the end?

Posted by: LeeM9308

++++++++++++++

Not important to us, but likely very important to the Marlins. They're only 3rd place in the wild card race and colorado (1st place) has lost 2.

Posted by: NatsNut | September 13, 2009 7:29 PM | Report abuse

NatsNut, maybe so, but I stand by my "relatively meaningless" characterization. Was it REALLY worthwhile to the Fish, risking an injury to someone like Hanley Ramirez under the atrocious conditions toward the end of the game? And what if one of our guys got hurt out there? Any Nats fan would be understandably furious.

Wonder if the crew chief got any recommendations from MLB during the rain delays. And wonder if Marlins management had any input into the decision-making.

Posted by: LeeM9308 | September 13, 2009 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Road trip to Philly and NY. Hopefully the team will continue to play like they have of late.

Fifty before 100. Gratitude for small favors always pays off in the end.

Posted by: periculum | September 13, 2009 9:36 PM | Report abuse

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