CHICAGO — So, once again, a fifth game in the first round. Totally can’t handle it. Wouldn’t have it any other way.
There has been no more tumultuous, enthralling, ridiculous, newsy days in the history of the Washington Nationals than Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2017. Major League Baseball announced it would move the Montreal Expos to the nation’s capital 4,760 days earlier. Comb through them all — Livan Hernandez throwing the first D.C. pitch in 33 years, Ryan Zimmerman walking off the Atlanta Braves to christen a new ballpark, Bryce Harper being drafted, Jordan Zimmermann throwing a no-hitter, Max Scherzer striking out 20 — and nothing compares to this chilly fall day in the Windy City.
Were there self-inflicted wounds on the part of the Nationals in how they handled the Stephen Strasburg-won’t-pitch-oh-wait-a-minute-now-he-will debacle? Sure. Of course. Do they matter now, after Strasburg spent Wednesday twisting the Chicago Cubs into so many pretzels, the author of a season-extending 5-0 victory in Game 4 of this National League Division Series? Nope. Not really.
“Down 2-1,” second baseman Daniel Murphy said, “your entire thought process is to get it back home to D.C.”