Watching the MLB Postseason has given me a sick feeling, knowing the Washington Nationals had the potential to get there, but failed to meet expectations.
The Nationals spent the majority of the season dealing with reoccurring injuries, roster changes and trying to stay above the .500 mark.
Despite the Nationals’ struggles, there were still bright moments to take away from the 82-80 season. Here are my top five moments from the 2018 season.
1. Bryce Harper wins Home Run Derby
Outfielder Bryce Harper brought the entire District together with his heroics during the 2018 Home Run Derby, where he defeated Kyle Schwarber in the dramatic final round. This was Harper’s brightest moment in a season where he struggled to find consistency within his game.
2. Max Scherzer reach 300K milestone
Scherzer has reached many milestones during his time with the Nationals. From his 20-strikeout performance to throwing two no-hitters in 2015. Scherzer has cemented himself as one of the top pitchers in the game.
Scherzer added to his impressive resume when he tallied his 300th strikeout of the season against the Miami Marlins on Sept. 26. Scherzer is the 17th pitcher since 1900 and the fifth since 2000 to reach that mark.
If it wasn’t for New York Mets’ pitcher Jacob DeGrom, Scherzer would possibly be looking at his third straight CY Young award.
3. Juan Soto hits first career home run in first game
I didn’t know what to expect from Soto when he was called up to the majors. Even though he was heavily regarded as one of the top players in the the Nationals’ farm system, Soto was coming straight from Double-A at the age of 19.
Soto caught the baseball world’s eye in his first career start against the San Diego Padres when he went 2-4 with a home run and three RBI. Soto’s first career bomb was just the beginning of an impressive and historic rookie campaign.
4. Caps celebrate Stanley Cup victory at Nats Park
After the Washington Capitals won the 2018 Stanley Cup, ending the dreadful D.C. sports curse, they spent the night partying in Las Vegas before coming back to D.C. just to party some more.
The Capitals brought the celebration to the Nats Parks to watch the Nationals play the San Francisco Giants.
The Capitals filled the game with funny and memorable moments like Alexander Ovechkin throwing the first pitch twice, and MASN reporter Dan Kolko interviewing the team in their suite, while they consumed alcohol.
I was hoping the Capitals’ championship season would rub off on the National, but it looks like I was wrong.
5. Ryan Zimmerman Walks-Off against the Phillies
When the Nationals took on the Philadelphia Phillies on Aug. 22, they were mathematically still in the division title race even though they were sitting in third place.
Ryan Zimmerman gave Nationals’ fan some hope when he hit his 11th career walk-off home run to cap off a 8-7 comeback victory. Zimmerman’s home run was intentionally called a double before it was reviewed and overturned.