5 standout moments at Nationals Park

December 1st, 2021

Nationals Park opened just over 10 years ago on March 30, 2008, in Southeast Washington, D.C. Since then, it has been the home to historical no-hitters, dramatic walk-off homers and franchise-changing postseason wins, just to name a few feats. Take a look at five memorable moments that have taken place at Nats Park.

1. Nationals clinch first World Series berth
Oct. 15, 2019

One of the more interesting notes from the 2019 World Series between the Nationals and Astros is the road team won each of the seven games, culminating in Washington capturing it all in Houston. Looking back at memorable moments from the Nats’ title run, their Game 4 victory over the Cardinals in the National League Championship Series stamped their first ticket to the big stage. An electric home crowd watched as Washington scored all seven of its runs in the first inning alone and swept St. Louis in commanding fashion.

“Often, bumpy roads lead to beautiful places,” manager Dave Martinez said. “And this is a beautiful place."

2. 's walk-off home run in Nats Park opener
March 30, 2008

What better way to open a ballpark than have an exciting ending to the inaugural game? Tied 2-2 with two outs in the bottom of the ninth against Atlanta, Zimmerman sent a solo shot to deep left-center field that lifted Washington to a victory in the Nationals Park opener. He became the third player in baseball history to hit a game-ending homer in the first game at a Major League stadium.

3. strikes out 20
May 11, 2016

In the midst of Scherzer’s second Cy Young Award-winning season, he set a franchise record and became the fourth pitcher in Major League history to record 20 strikeouts in a nine-inning game. Scherzer threw 119 pitches (96 strikes) in nine innings against the Tigers -- his former team -- including 27 called strikes and 31 swings and misses. He joined Roger Clemens, Kerry Wood and Randy Johnson in the 20-K club.

"Tonight, at the end of the night, was a special night," Scherzer said. "Because, I mean, the strikeouts are sexy. And to be able to punch out 20 -- it's sexy."

4. throws Nationals’ first no-hitter
Sept. 28, 2014

Zimmermann kept the Nationals' crowd on the edge of their seats to the very last out of the 2014 regular season. All eyes in the ballpark were glued to Christian Yelich’s line drive as it soared into left field, putting Zimmermann’s no-hit bid in question. Steven Souza Jr. made a backwards-diving, over-the-shoulder catch to clinch the Nats’ first no-hitter in team history. Zimmermann also tossed the first no-hitter in Washington since Aug. 8, 1931, when Senators pitcher Bobby Burke accomplished the feat at Griffith Stadium.

5. wins Home Run Derby
July 16, 2018

Harper became only the third player to win the Home Run Derby at his home ballpark when the Nationals hosted the 2018 All-Star Weekend. Pummeling pitches from his father, Ron, Harper eliminated Freddie Freeman, Max Muncy and Kyle Schwarber to take the championship. In the final round, he swatted nine home runs in the final 50 seconds in front of 43,698 fans.

“This is [for] the whole city of D.C.,” Harper said. “I was very fortunate to be able to bring this back to them and do it here."