Baseball game suspended after three injured in shooting outside Washington Nationals–San Diego Padres game

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Nationals Park earlier this month.

Three people were shot outside Nationals Park in the U.S. capital city of Washington, D.C. during a baseball game Saturday night between the Washington Nationals and the San Diego Padres at the bottom of the game's sixth inning. The game was suspended until the next day.

The District of Colombia's (D.C.) Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) said the shooting happened outside the ballpark's third base gate on South Capitol Street, telling the The Washington Post that one woman was shot and two others took themselves to the hospital. All three have non-life-threatening injuries. On Twitter, The Washington Post's Sam Fortier wrote "[s]tadium employees are saying this appeared to be a drive-by shooting."

D.C. police said gunfire was shot from one vehicle to another. Early reports by the police said four people were injured by gunfire, but this was later revised to three.

A joint statement from D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser and Nationals owner Mark D. Lerner said, "While MPD's investigation is ongoing, it appears the incident involved a dispute between individuals in two vehicles. MPD does not believe the Washington Nationals, the ballpark or fans were the target".

Gunshots were reportedly audible within the stadium which led many to disperse, with players exiting the field right after and some spectators fleeing the stadium through the park's gates. Padres players Fernando Tatis, Jr. and Manny Machado opened the gate to the field allowing parkgoers into the dugout, the The Washington Post's Andrew Golden said on Twitter. Both Tatis and Machado along with Padres players Wil Myers and Jurickson Profar helped pull family members and spectators into the dugout's safety.

Spectators were first told to remain within the stadium, but was later being encouraged to leave through the outfield. The park was emptied out by 10:05 P.M. ET (0205 UTC).

In a statement, the Washington Nationals team said, "During the incident last night outside of the ballpark, you handled yourselves in a very admirable manner. You stayed calm. You helped one another. We have always known that we have the best fans in baseball. Last night, you showed it. Davey Martinez said it best—our fans are our family. Thank you."

At the game's suspension, the Padres were leading eight points to four. The suspended game resumed yesterday at 1:08 P.M. EST (1708 UTC), where the Padres beat the Nationals 10–4, gaining two additional runs after Saturday's postponement. The Nationals rallied and won the game already scheduled for that day against the Padres 8–7, which ended a six-game streak of losses for the Washington team.