WASHINGTON -- The game between the Dodgers and Nationals on Friday night at Nationals Park was suspended before the top of the sixth inning with the Nats leading, 3-2, when some of the stadium lights near the third-base line shut off for the third time. The game was resumed on Saturday, with the Nationals winning, 5-3.
"We had unforeseen circumstances," Nationals manager Matt Williams said. "You never know with baseball."
The Nationals issued the following statement Saturday morning in a press release:
"Our initial investigation indicates the power failure at Nationals Park last night was caused by a faulty circuit breaker. It was replaced shortly after midnight and the lights were tested throughout the night with no additional outages. While we believe we have identified and corrected the issue, additional tests are being conducted by the manufacturer of the field lighting system.
"The Nationals organization would like to again apologize to our fans for any inconvenience this incident may have caused."
The Nats led after five full innings, but the game was suspended rather than considered complete due to Rule 4.12 (a) (3), which provides for a suspended game when the stoppage in play results from "Light failure or malfunction of a mechanical field device under control of the home club."
Tickets from Friday night's game are not valid for either game on Saturday. However, fans with tickets to Friday's game will be able to exchange them for a future game in 2015, subject to availability. Fans with tickets for the 4:05 p.m. game are welcome to attend the resumed game. Gates will open at 11:30 a.m.
The first delay occurred in the bottom of the fourth inning, and play resumed after a delay of one hour and 22 minutes. After the top of the fifth inning, lighting issues again caused a delay for 40 minutes. The lights were turned back on and Dodgers righty Chin-hui Tsao took the hill for the bottom of the fifth, allowing a two-run homer to Yunel Escobar to give the Nats a 3-2 lead. Before the sixth inning could get underway, the lights went out for the third time.
"After the first one, I don't think anybody quite knew what was going on," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. "... After they finally kind of figured it out after the second one, they thought they knew, but they basically told us if it happened again, we wouldn't finish it. We would finish it tomorrow."
When the first delay occurred, the Dodgers were leading, 2-1. Nationals first baseman Tyler Moore came to the plate to face right-hander Mike Bolsinger. At 8:19 p.m. ET, the lights near the third-base line shut down. As Dodgers catcher Yasmani Grandal went to talk to Bolsinger, the umpires told the players to get off the field.
When play resumed, Bolsinger got Moore to pop out and Michael Taylor to fly out to end the inning. The Dodgers were retired in order in the top of the fifth.
Nationals right-hander Jordan Zimmermann pitched four innings and allowed two runs on three hits. After the first delay, there was no chance Zimmermann was going back in the game.
"I've never seen anything like it before," Zimmermann said. "It's unfortunate. I felt pretty good tonight and [then the lights went out]. It's just one of those things you can't explain."
After Zimmermann left the game, Tanner Roark pitched one scoreless inning and struck out two batters. Williams said that Roark could be back on the mound during the suspended game, but no decision will be made until Saturday.