Washington Nationals Top 10 Games Of 2015: #8 – Ryan Zimmerman Hits Walk-Off Home Run In 10th Inning Against Yankees


Today, we continue our countdown of the top ten games of the 2015 season with number eight. For this spot on the list, we take you back to May 19 when the Washington Nationals took on the New York Yankees at Nats Park. It was the first time the Yankees played a regular season game in Washington DC since 2012. On this night, Ryan Zimmerman provided more of his walk-off magic for the Nats with a game-winning two run homer against Andrew Miller in the bottom of the tenth to defeat the Yanks, 8-6.

Right out of the gate, it was the Nats that scored two early runs against Yankees’ starter, Nathan Eovaldi. With one out, Ian Desmond hit a solo shot to right center for his third home run of the season. Two batters later, Bryce Harper hit a solo shot to center for his 15th of the season. Just like that, the Nats had an early 2-0 lead.

As for Gio Gonzalez, the Nationals’ left-hander was perfect through the first three innings, but he unraveled in the fourth. Chris Young drove in the Yankees’ first run of the game with a base hit to center that scored Jacoby Ellsbury, who would leave later in the game due to injury.

Three batters later, Chase Headley tied the game with a two-out double to left that drove in Young. The scoring did not stop there as Stephen Drew hit a two-run single to center that scored Headley and Jose Pirela to put New York up 4-2. The lead would eventually go to 6-2 when Mark Teixeira hit a two-run home run to left in the fifth, his 12th of the season. That would be it for Gonzalez as he gave up six runs on six hits over five innings.

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The Nationals’ offense did mount a comeback in this game and it started in the bottom of the fifth. Clint Robinson drove in Danny Espinosa (who walked to leadoff the inning) with a double to right. With the deficit 6-3, Desmond and Yunel Escobar hit back-to-back RBI singles to cut the Yankees lead to 6-5 and Eovaldi’s night was over before he finished five innings (4.1 innings, five runs, seven hits).

One innings later, Wilson Ramos continued his great hitting in May when he hit a one-out solo shot to left center to tie the game against future Nats’ reliever, David Carpenter. Ramos’ second home run of the season extended his hitting streak to 19 games.

From there, it would be a battle of the bullpens. The Nats’ bullpen did their job as Blake Treinen, Matt Thornton, Aaron Barrett, Drew Storen, and Matt Grace (who got the win) threw five scoreless innings, gave up two hits, and struck out five batters. Storen got one of those strikeouts in the top of the ninth when he struck out pinch-hitter Alex Rodriguez.

Another intriguing matchup about this game occurred in the bottom of the seventh inning. In an inning where Wilmer Difo got his Major League hit with a leadoff single, the Nats had two runners on base with two outs for Harper. The Yanks would bring in left-handed pitcher, Chasen Shreve, to face Harper. Shreve was a teammate of Harper at the College of Southern Nevada. It was Shreve who won the battle when he struck out Harper swinging to end the inning.

Then, in the bottom of the tenth, Zimmerman would deliver his heroics. With Yunel Escobar on first via a walk and two outs, Zimmerman hit a 3-1 fastball off the foul pole in right for a walk-off two-run homer. It was his fifth home run of the season and the tenth walk-off home run of his career. The Nats would go on to sweep the Yankees in the mini-series with a win the following night.

Next: Top 10 Games Of 2015: #9: Nats Rally In 8th Inning To Beat Mets

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