Greatest All-Star Performances in Washington Nationals History
Since the Washington Nationals franchise shifted from Montreal to the Nation's capital, the number of All-Star bids for the team has been limited. As the organization has gradually improved, these numbers have steadily increased.
Last season saw the Nationals send four players to the Midsummer Classic, the most in franchise history. Most recently, Bryce Harper and Jordan Zimmermann were selected to join the 2013 National League squad, with Harper becoming the first-ever Washington National to start the game.
The following slideshow will highlight the best handful of Washington Nationals All-Star moments since 2005.
With the looks of it and the stellar talent within the organization, there will be many more to come in the years ahead.
Livan Hernandez, 2005
2005 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
July 12, 2005, at Comerica Park, Home of the Detriot Tigers
The game ended with the American League defeating the National League 7-5, thus awarding the AL champion (which eventually turned out to be the Chicago White Sox) home-field advantage in the 2005 World Series.
The NL wasted a scoring opportunity in the top of the fourth, when with two runners on, Aramis Ramirez hit into a double play to end that threat.
In the bottom of that inning, Ichiro Suzuki hit a broken-bat, bloop single to score two, but was then picked off first base by the Washington Nationals' Livan Hernandez.
Alfonso Soriano, 2006
2006 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
July 11, 2006, at PNC Park, Home of the Pittsburgh Pirates
The game finished with the American League defeating the National League 3–2, awarding the AL champion (which was eventually the Detroit Tigers) home-field advantage in the 2006 World Series.
Former Washington National Alfonso Soriano hit a single with one out and stole second base on Gold Glove catcher Ivan Rodriguez. He tried to score on a single by Carlos Beltran but was thrown out at home plate by Vernon Wells.
Matt Capps, 2010
2010 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
July 13, 2010, at Angel Stadium of Anaheim, Home of the Los Angeles Angels
The National League won the game 3–1, ending a 13-game winless streak.
Former Washington National Matt Capps finished the game as the winning pitcher for the NL after striking out the lone batter he faced in the sixth inning. Capps became the first-ever Washington National to register a win during the Midsummer Classic.
Tyler Clippard, 2011
2011 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
July 12, 2011, at Chase Field, Home of the Arizona Diamondbacks
The game ended in a 5–1 win for the National League, their second straight All-Star victory. It was the first MLB All-Star Game to be held in Arizona and the first in a National League Park to have a designated hitter.
Current Nationals setup man Tyler Clippard became the first pitcher in major league history to earn a win in an All-Star Game or a postseason game by facing only one batter and allowing a hit.
Adrian Beltre singled to left off Clippard, but Hunter Pence threw Jose Bautista out at home plate to end the top of the fourth inning. The NL took the lead for good in the bottom half of the frame, making Clippard the winning pitcher.
This was also the secondstraight All-Star game in which the winning pitcher was a member of the Washington Nationals, an impressive feat for the young franchise. As previously stated, Matt Capps was the winner in 2010.
Bryce Harper Leads Group of 4 Nats in 2012 All-Star Game
2012 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
July 10, 2012, at Kauffman Stadium, Home of the Kansas City Royals
This marked the third time the Midsummer Classic had been played in Kansas City, with Kauffman Stadium (then named Royals Stadium) last hosting the event in 1973, the stadium's first year of existence.
Bryce Harper's selection to the All-Star game at the age of 19 made him the third-youngest player ever to be named an All-Star and the youngest-ever position player, behind only Dwight Gooden and Bob Feller.
This game also featured the most Nationals selected (Bryce Harper, Ian Desmond, Stephen Strasburg and Gio Gonzalez) to one All-Star game.