by Chris Lingebach

WASHINGTON (CBSDC) — The Washington Nationals nearly lost more than Game 1 of this year’s Battle of the Beltways to the Orioles Monday night; they nearly lost the attendance battle.

While the announced attendance said 35,125, the loud, overpowering ‘Let’s Go O’s” chants said something else.

It said the Nationals home-field advantage wasn’t so much an advantage, yesterday. While some have wagered whether the crowd was 60-40 Nats-to-O’s fans, or an even 50-50 split, the fact of the matter remains, that it’s even up for debate rules advantage-Orioles.

Stephen Strasburg, who got a no decision in 7 innings of 2-run work, perhaps described the feeling best, after the game.

“Maybe someday it will be different,” he said. “Obviously that franchise has been around a lot longer than we have. Can’t really worry about it too much. Hopefully our fans travel well after tomorrow.”

But the troll of the game, came not from Orioles fans at the park — neither shouting a collective “O!” during the national anthem, nor an Orioles fan throwing an Anthony Rendon home run ball back onto the field — no, the best hardest trolls came from a member of the national media.

CBS Sports NFL insider Jason La Canfora, an admitted Orioles (er, no, Red Sox … no, no … Baltimore?) fan (just follow his Twitter timeline in the summer months, or read below in two seconds), really gave ’em hell last night, and wins by biggest Nats troll virtue of casting the widest net, to his 414,000 followers.

Of course, Nationals fans had their witty comebacks.

Anyway, hat tip to JLC for the fearless troll effort. Maybe this Beltway thing really is becoming a rivalry.

This guy comes in second (via Nats Enquirer):


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