Ryan Zimmerman starts World Series with a boom

Brian Tinsman
October 22, 2019 - 9:44 pm

If you were writing a Hollywood script, this would all be a bit cliche.

Ryan Zimmerman, Mr. National, who grew up in Virginia, played at the University of Virginia, became the first pick in franchise history and the face of the organization for 15 years, hit a towering home run in his first World Series at-bat.

Coming into the game, he had played the most active games in MLB without playing in a World Series. It was Astros pitcher Gerrit Cole’s second pitch to the 35-year-old, a 96-mph fastball over the middle of the plate.

Zimmerman, who has spent a career waiting for this moment, did not miss:

Cole didn’t even turn around to watch. He knew where it was going as the pitch came off the bat:

For reasons that nobody can explain, the fan who caught the home run threw it back. Hopefully that makes its way onto Zimmerman’s mantle:

The home run was the first Nats’ run in World Series history, and the first by a D.C. baseball player since Fred Schulte crushed one vs. the New York baseball Giants on Oct. 7, 1933.

It’s been a long time coming.

It was also Zimmerman’s fifth career postseason home run, tying Bryce Harper for the most in Nationals/Expos history--something that everyone can feel good about.

Most importantly, Zimmerman’s slam cut the Astros’ lead in half and gave the Nats some momentum back after they got to Max Scherzer for two runs in the first inning.

Brian Tinsman has covered D.C. sports since 2011, both from the team marketing and skeptical fan perspectives. Tweet your criticisms @Brian_Tinsman.