The World Series is over and free agency has commenced. We’ve gotten back the hour of sleep we lost in March at about the time baseball and the world went a little crazy. Now it’s dark at 5:30 p.m. Is it supposed to be this cold in November? I could swear I saw flurries this morning.
While we don’t know for sure what the 2021 baseball season will hold, we do know a few simple truths. Among them is that MASN will feed your need for diamond memories all offseason long with “Nationals Classics.”
This week’s dose of nostalgia includes the usual - extra-inning heroics, walk-off magic and some Max Scherzer mastery. Not all of the “Nationals Classics” are totally retro; you’ll see a game from the recently completed - though pandemic-shortened - season integrated into the mix.
So kick back in your recliner or sofa, ready your favorite beverage and snacks, and enter offseason mode on MASN!
Thursday, Nov. 5 - 9 a.m. - No one wants bonus baseball on Sundays. For at least one team, it’s a getaway day. Players want to enjoy an evening meal with their families, not cast a wary eye at rows of zeros on the scoreboard. On April 24, 2016, the Twins and Nationals put up a lot of goose eggs in 16 innings. Thankfully, Chris Heisey led off the home 16th with a laser over the wall in left-center for a 6-5 win for the home team.
Thursday, Nov. 5 - 7 p.m. - Speaking of zeros, Scherzer recorded seven innings of them on July 6, 2019 in a 6-0 whitewashing of the Royals. Kurt Suzuki homered and Juan Soto drove in two runs in the shutout victory. Mad Max finished with 11 strikeouts.
Sunday, Nov. 8 - 11:30 p.m. - For your late-night viewing pleasure (admit it, you missed West Coast games this season, didn’t you?), here’s Stephen Strasburg’s second career start, from June 13, 2010 at Cleveland’s Progressive Field. Strasburg didn’t dominate, as he did in his debut against the Pirates, but he yielded only two hits and fanned eight in 5 1/3 innings, securing the victory. He got support from the home run bats of Adam Dunn and Roger Bernadina.
Monday, Nov. 9 - 12:30 p.m. - Scherzer left little doubt during his second no-hitter of the season on Oct. 3, 2015 against the Mets. The grunting right-hander whiffed 17 in a 2-0 win in the nightcap of a doubleheader on the season’s penultimate day, including nine in a row at one point. Scherzer got Yoenis Céspedes and Lucas Duda swinging for the first two outs of the ninth, then retired Curtis Granderson on a weak pop fly to third base.
Tuesday, Nov. 10 - 9 a.m. - If you like extra-inning offense, you’ll love this throwback from June 19, 2013. If the 6-2 final looks a little lopsided for an 11-inning affair, you can thank Ian Desmond, whose grand slam off Michael Stutes was the difference-maker at Citizens Bank Park.
Tuesday, Nov. 10 - 11:30 p.m. - What would “Nationals Classics” be without a Ryan Zimmerman walk-off? On July 31, 2010, Zimmerman stepped to the plate in the bottom of the ninth with the home team trailing 5-4 and socked a three-run blast off Brad Lidge, ending the game and sending Nationals Park into delirium.
Wednesday, Nov. 11 - 4 p.m. - This week’s slate ends with a Scherzer milestone. In a 9-1 shellacking of the Marlins in Miami on July 27, 2018, the right-hander struck out 11 in eight three-hit innings, becoming the fourth pitcher in major league history to record 200 or more strikeouts in seven straight seasons.