Screen cap (

Nats and Rockies engage in standoff after national anthem

Everyone reading this (and surely the guy writing this) did something today that was probably a waste of time, perhaps causing you to wonder if there was a better way you could have spent that particular chunk of your workday.

But whatever you did — or didn’t — do, it couldn’t have been any more nonsensical than what the Nationals’ Aaron Barrett and Rockies’ Brandon Barnes engaged in before their game at Coors Field on Wednesday.

After the national anthem played and both teams left the field, Barrett and Barnes stayed outside their respective dugouts, locked in a standoff to see which one would be the last to leave the field.

The last time we saw such a confrontation was during last year’s NLCS when the Dodgers’ Scott Van Slyke and Cardinals’ Joe Kelly had a standoff before Game 6. But the stakes for this staredown were much higher. This was the postseason. The Dodgers faced a must-win situation. Not only that, but Van Slyke and Kelly held their positions for 15 minutes — and with no help from teammates or coaches.

That last point is worth mentioning because Barrett and Barnes both received aid in some form or another. Barrett was given water and sunscreen, and had an elbow pad applied to his right arm by Bryce Harper. Barnes got a massage. Neither yielded, even as Colorado’s Jorge De La Rosa threw his warmup pitches and the Nats’ Denard Span stepped into the batters box to lead off the game.

After this went on for more than five minutes, home plate umpire Paul Emmel ended this nonsense and told both players to get off the field. Emmel whistled at Barnes to get him off the field first, likely because he was standing further out from the dugout, on the edge of the grass.

That gave the standoff victory to Barrett, something he can apparently brag about with his teammates. However, Barnes may be able to take solace in an actual baseball victory, as the Rockies currently lead the Nationals, 6-2, going into the ninth inning.

How did you waste five or six minutes of your day today?

About Ian Casselberry

Ian is an editor for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He has covered baseball for Yahoo! Sports,, Bleacher Report and SB Nation, and provides analysis for several sports talk radio shows each week. He currently lives in Asheville, NC.