Leaving Their Feat

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The Nationals put their athleticism on display twice last night, with both feats coming from surprising sources.

In the top of the sixth inning, Tampa Bay had the tying run at second base with two outs, trailing 3-2. Jose Molina, who had driven a deep home run to left field earlier in the game, flared a ball to shallow left. Steve Lombardozzi – the converted second baseman who had never played in the outfield before this season – understandably took his first step back, as all outfielders are told to do. Then, realizing the ball was coming down in front of him, he broke forward into a run and dove face first to make the snag, preserving the one-run lead in a game that would end without either team scoring again.

The other feat was perhaps even more out of left field, so to speak. Back in the first inning, with Bryce Harper at second base and no outs, Ryan Zimmerman hit a chopper to Rays shortstop Elliot Johnson, who threw towards third to try to nab Harper advancing. The ball skipped away from third baseman Sean Rodriguez, and was heading directly toward Nationals third base coach Bo Porter, who had dropped to his knees to guide Harper to slide. Porter sprung up from the ground, narrowly avoiding the ball, which trickled all the way to the steps of the Rays dugout, eventually falling in. That allowed Zimmerman to go to second base and Harper to advance home and score, neither of which would have happened if Porter hadn’t used every ounce of effort to get out of the way.

So, we leave it up to you, the fan. Vote in the poll below and tell us which of Wednesday night’s acrobatics most impressed you.

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