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The Nationals are killing it this year. They have a well run organization and have bided their time, accumulating many prospects including Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper. It’s must be a great reward for the fans, which were patient during a multitude of losing seasons leading up to 2012. It must also be especially rewarding for one of their longest tenured players, Ryan Zimmerman.
Zimmerman seems like a pretty laid back guy. Never really one for the spotlight, but maybe that’s because for the most part he has yet to live up to the expectations attached to him while growing up in the minors. That is until this year of course. Maybe, just maybe, that has something to do with finally settling down (or the magic shot to repair his shoulder. Seriously, what the hell was in that shot??)…
Ryan Zimmerman’s became engaged to his girlfriend Heather Downen the day before the Nationals 2012 opening game. As the story goes, the couple was walking around the DC monuments when they got to the Lincoln Memorial, where Zimmerman dropped to one knee and proposed. Zimmerman and Downen had been dating roughly two years. To add icing to the cake, Zimmerman scored the winning run for the Nationals the next day.
Downen is originally from DC and currently works at a technology company called Venga. She also helps out with Zimmerman’s charity, the ziMS Foundation. The foundation raises money to fight MS, which Zimmerman’s mother is diagnosed with.
Zimmerman and Downen are planning on getting married in the winter of 2012. Apparently right now getting married is the “thing” to do if you’re a National, as six of Zimmerman’s teammates are also getting hitched during the offseason.
@Angela_Rypien: My first #MLB game EVER :) Go #Nats @ Nationals Park
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Gio Gonzalez is the defacto ace of the team in MLB with the best record, and possible odds on favorite to represent the National League in the Fall Classic. We only say defacto due to the seemingly baseless shutdown of Steven Strasburg in the name of protecting an injury (which various studies indicate cannot be impacted by increased production the following season). Fortunately for the Nats and their fans, they have a guy ready to take the ace role who would likely be the ace on about 25 other teams in the league, in Gio Gonzalez.
While Gio hopefully pitches the Nats deep into October, he'll have support in the stands from another local sport star. Lingerie Football League QB, Angela Rypien (and yes, daughter of former Super Bowl MVP Mark Rypien) has been popping up on Twitter with some dot connecting Tweets about her new favorite baseball team. Larry Brown Sports is the one who connected the dots that it appears that Gio Gonzalez's girlfriend is likely Angela Rypien. Angela took to Twitter to tweet about her first game, which so happened to be started by Gio Gonzalez. On September 16, she took to Twitter again, to say, Hello @MLB!! Watching the @Nationals game.. I have my eyes on someone specific Let's go #Nats. Gio Gonzalez also happened to take the bump in that game, which Larry Brown Sports put together. They Tweeted to Angela:
@LBSports: @Angela_Rypien Hey Angela, are you dating Gio? First game you attended he was pitching, and also tonight ... any official comment?
Angela somewhat surprisingly replied with a cutesy non-denial, "Great Observation."
So what do we make of this? Honestly, it fits. The best player on the best team in the NL (who isn't a married Steven Strasburg, or a 19 year old Mormon kid) is dating one of the breakout stars of the Lingerie Football League who also happens to play for a hometown team. It makes sense to us.
We'll keep an eye on Angela in October, because you know she'll be there for home playoff starts.
Finally, we occasionally end on a personal note. OK, I'll rephrase that. We occasionally end with me bragging or whining about my fantasy baseball team. This is no exception. Gio. I'm sorry I traded you for Troy Tulowitzki. Hey, did anyone hear Tulo will be back Friday? It doesn't matter when you read this, BECAUSE IT EFFING APPLIED ALL SEASON... HE'LL BE BACK FRIDAY. OKAY, WE MEAN IT THIS TIME, HE'LL BE BACK FRIDAY. OH SORRY, HE'LL ACTUALLY BE BACK THIS FRIDAY... HE'S STILL NOT FREAKING BACK AND I'M OUT OF THE PLAYOFFS. YOU RUINED THE BEST FANTASY BASEBALL ROSTER EVER ASSEMBLED IN OUR LEAGUE TULO. And I'm sorry Gio. You deserved better treatment.