|Washington Nationals starting lineup|
|Gio Gonzalez blowing on his hands before his pre game routine|
On April 2nd, after work I went to Citi Field to see the Mets host the Washington Nationals. That night my pal Gio Gonzalez was making his first start of the season. With that being said, when I got to Citi Field I went right to the bullpen area so I could be in position to watch Gio get ready for his start. He came out & he did his pre game routine. He had his headphones on while he did so. He stretched, he ran then he did some long tossing. When he got done, he took his headphones off & proceeded to walk into the bullpen so he could finish by warming up on the mound there. As he walked in, I got his attention. He acknowledged me. I gave him plenty of words of wisdom. As he wrote on the jersey that he gave me last September & I quote "To Gary "Best Damn "True" Fan any Baseball player could ever ask for!!" True to those words, I gave him the encouragement he deserves to be the best he can be. I was wearing the jersey proudly. When he got done warming up, he caught me off guard when he threw the ball he warmed up with towards me. Thankfully I saw it coming & I reach out with my bare hand & I caught it. I was so happy. He made my night. He then proceeded to walk back towards the dugout to get ready for the game to start. As for me, I went upstairs to the royal court up in section 515 where I met up with the King, Vincent Ascanio & the rest of the bunch who showed up that night.
|Gio Gonzalez warming up in the bullpen at Citi Field|
|Gio following on a warm up pitch|
|Gio talking to his hand & the ball|
|Gio pausing between warm up pitches|
|What he wrote on the jersey he gave me|
|Ball I caught that Gio used to warm up with|
As for the game we saw, Gio got off to a rough start as he gave up a lead off triple to Juan Lagares who eventually scored the game's first run when David Wright drove him in with a sacrifice fly to give the Mets a 1-0 lead. The Nationals went ahead 2-1 in the third inning when Adam LaRoche hit a two run homer. They tacked on a few more in the fifth inning when Ian Desmond hit a solo homer then my boy Gio Gonzalez surprisingly did the same. I couldn't believe it. He apparently couldn't either as he raced home from second base when he realized he did hit a home run. I wound up jumping for joy. The Nationals scored another run later on a wild pitch as they went on to beat the Mets again, 5-1. Gio wound up going six innings. He gave up four hits & just the one run while he walked one & he struck out six to earn his first win of the season. I couldn't have written a better script myself. What a memorable night it was.
Stay tuned as I'm going to write a special post about the first weekend of the season which included some special guests.
Thank you for reading & following along.