Jun 26, 2017 at 11:42a ET
The Nats may have a comfortable nine-game lead in the NL East standings entering their game against the Cubs on Monday night, but there are a few holes within the team that could keep them from winning a World Series. Namely, a miserable bullpen which has a 4.88 ERA (26th out of 30 teams in the majors) and has already blown 12 saves on the season.
It’s enough to give Nats fans heartburn – but last week things went even further. A 68-year-old fan named Patrick Killebrew passed away on June 20, and in his obituary, blamed the Nats’ bullpen for his demise.
From the Richmond Times-Dispatch:
KILLEBREW, Patrick, “Pat,” age 68, passed away peacefully at home, June 20, 2017, after watching the Washington Nationals relief pitchers blow yet another lead. Beloved father and husband, longtime attorney, former U.S. Navy Navigator and avid baseball fan and player. Join in a celebration of his life July 2, 6 to 8 p.m., at the SCA Clubhouse, 9601 Redbridge Rd., 23236. In lieu of flowers, send “donations” to the “Nationals Bullpen Fund.”
Obviously, this is all a little tongue-in-cheek, but here’s the crazy part: It checks out. As Yahoo Sports points out, on June 19 (the day before Killebrew’s passing) Washington actually had a one-run lead on the Miami Marlins in the fifth, before the bullpen allowed Miami to tie things up. The Marlins won on a walk-off in the ninth inning and Killebrew passed away a short time later.
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