The Washington Nationals beat the Cleveland Indians tonight on a ninth inning home run by 23-year-old second baseman Anthony Rendon. The Nats' infielder's first major league home run went out to right field and just over the wall after Chad Tracy's second home of the year tied it up at 6-6 in the top of the eighth. Rendon should have been out, however, having popped up the pitch before the home run, but the Indians let the ball drop in foul territory and gave the Nationals' 2011 1st Round pick a second chance which he used to launch his first MLB blast to right off Indians' reliever Vinnie Pestano.
Watch Rendon's First HR - LINK
It was, however, somewhat surprising that it came to that considering the fact that the Nats staked starter Jordan Zimmermann to a 5-0 lead early in the game with home runs by Ryan Zimmerman, Jayson Werth and Ian Desmond. Each of those home runs were solo blasts. Adam LaRoche grounded into a double play with the bases loaded in the third, but one run crossed on the play and Cleveland starter Scott Kazmir threw a wild pitch with Ian Desmond on third later in the inning to let another run in and put Washington up by five, 5-0.
Zimmermann gave up a two-out RBI single by Jason Kipnis in the fifth that got the Indians on the board and Carlos Santana and Mark Reynolds hit back-to-back home runs off the Nats' starter in the fourth to make it 5-3.
The Indians got three singles, one a two-out RBI hit and a two-out, two-RBI double by Michael Brantley in the fifth that put Cleveland ahead 6-5 before the Nationals rallied to take the second game of two in Progressive Field on the eighth and ninth inning home runs by Tracy and Rendon, respectively.
After winning HR, Rendon thanks his elders: "Mullet power. I gotta do a shoutout to [LaRoche] for hooking me up with this awesome haircut."— James Wagner (@JamesWagnerWP) June 16, 2013
After the game, as we'll try to every night going forward, Dave Nichols from the District Sports Page and I broke down the win on our new podcast, Nats Nightly. You can listen below and we'll post links each night so you can listen and maybe even join in:
NATS NIGHTLY: Nationals 7-6 Over Indians