Ryan Zimmerman, who just became the franchise leader of home runs hit a few weeks ago, has been in DC for as long as I (and most people) can remember. And while he has been one of the premier baseball players in a Nationals uniform, last season was definitely a year for him to forget. His batting average (.218) and on-base plus slugging (.642) were career lows and 21% lower than the league average. His minus-1.3 wins above replacement was the second-worst n the majors among hitters with at least 450 plate appearances, causing some to speculate that Zimmerman was heading down the hill as many assume age 30+ players. Thankfully, for National Fans, that doesn’t seem to be true.
Already being touted as one of the best comeback stories of 2017, Zimmerman put up a .330/.373/.596 line in the first half, with 22 doubles and 19 home runs in 80 games and 324 plate appearances prior to the All-Star Break. Post All-Star break always drums up one of two extremes, either your cold team gets hot (like the Cubs, sort of) or your hot team (or player) goes cold. The latter was seemingly applying to Ryan Zimmerman, who was just 2 for 27 over his last eight games heading into yesterday’s game. Best way to bounce back? You go 4 for 4, with five RBIs, and two home runs, which is exactly what Ryan Zimmerman did on Wednesday.
From his post game interview with MASN’s Dan Kolko, Zimmerman said:
“It’s been a rough 10 days, two weeks, whatever. It’s kind of been a grind. You go through those. It doesn’t make it any more fun anytime you go through it, but it’s just to be able to have some good at-bats, hit some balls hard, and get rewarded for it.”
As spoiled as us baseball fans can be, naturally the Cycle Watch was on. Zimmerman reached the seventh inning having already hit a home run, a double and a single. So when his fly ball headed toward the right field fence, plenty were hoping it would hit off the wall so Zimmerman would have a chance for a triple.
And while we sometimes think we know more from our couch than those on the field, that is not what Zimmerman had in mind:
“Something catastrophic would’ve had to happen for me to get a triple, I think. Homers are way cooler than triples anyway.”
His manager, Dusty Baker was also impressed with the night his first baseman had saying:
“That was Zim’s night. He got a lot of hits, hit a couple homers, drove in a lot of runs and made an outstanding wide receiver-type catch down the line.”
It truly was a night to remember. With his second home run of the game scored his 906th career RBI. , Zimmerman overtook Tim Wallach’s number in Montreal and set a new franchise record. like this made fans cheer for two curtain calls from Zimmerman. His response?
Crowd wants one more curtain call from Zimmerman. He gives it to them, briefly. 10-1.
— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) August 10, 2017
He told reporters:
“They like curtain calls, I guess. I’m not gonna not go out there. Obviously, I have a special connection with all the people here. We’ve kind of grown up together, so anytime I get to do that with them, it’s fun.”
He also added to his post game interview by saying:
“I go through some cold times, but hopefully today will kind of get me going and kind of take me the rest of the two months.”
Here’s to hoping it does just that.