To us reporters, it was quite a surprise seeing Ross Ohlendorf’s name on the Nationals lineup card in the clubhouse on Friday afternoon. Normally if there is something unexpected in the Nats’ lineup, it’s just a position player getting the day off. But this time it was Stephen Strasburg’s name that was missing and it was indeed because of injury.
Ohlendorf said he came to the park on Friday with a pretty good feeling he would start. He was told the day before, after the Nats game with the Mets, that Strasburg’s bullpen session didn’t go as planned and mentally prepared as best he could to be the emergency option.
Ohlendorf saw the Phillies go up with an early run in the first inning, but managed to go five before his night was over. By the time he left Washington was up 6-1 and fully in control of the game.
The fact Ohlendorf could step in and allow the Nats to not miss a beat along their winning streak impressed his teammates.
“Ross has been great for us all year. From the time he came up as just kind of a long guy and started a few times, he’s done everything we asked of him and more,” Ryan Zimmerman said.
“He was very clutch,” Bryce Harper said. “He showed a lot of guts out there for us.”