Incredible footage has emerged of players opening gates for fans and ushering them into the dugouts during pandemonium caused by a shooting outside a Major League Baseball game at Nationals Park on Saturday.
The game between the San Diego Padres and Washington Nationals was suspended in the sixth inning after a shooting outside the stadium caused panic inside.
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Echoes of gunfire could be heard inside Nationals Park and prompted fans to scramble for safety.
Tatis bolted from the bench down the left field line, helping to open a gate to the stands and ushering a group back to the dugout.
“Our family, loved ones, little kids. Feel like somebody needed to go get them,” Tatis said on Sunday.
“I feel like the safest place was the clubhouse and we were trying to get our families into a safe place.”
The top half of the sixth inning had just ended in front of about 33,000 fans when several shots were heard from an incident that occurred on South Capitol Street, just outside the third-base side of the stadium.
In the moment, no one knew whether the rapid series of shots was coming from inside the ballpark or beyond.
Padres manager Jayce Tingler was on his way to see home plate umpire Jordan Baker about a pitching change when he heard the shots.
“He’s like, ‘Did you hear that?’" Tingler recalled Baker saying.
“I’m like, ‘yeah, I think so’ and it kind of registered what it possibly could have been and obviously it was just a nightmare.”
Players recount 'crazy' scenes after shooting
As the Padres cleared the field, some fans rushed to leave the stadium while others ducked and tried to hide, looking for cover.
“Everybody running. It was crazy. You couldn’t figure out what was going on. If it was one or two people,” Tatis said.
“I was just trying to get to the safest place and get our families.”
Tatis and teammates Machado and Wil Myers drew praise for helping guide - and even carry - fans out of harm’s way.
“The situation changed immediately,” Tatis said. “There’s no longer players, fans. I feel like everybody’s just people, human beings trying to be secure.”
As the shots rang out, Nationals manager Davey Martinez was making sure his players were safe.
“Then I started worrying about their families and trying to do the best I could to get them down to the players,” Martinez said. “And I started worrying about the fans as well.”
The game was completed on Sunday, with the Padres finishing off a 10-4 win.
Ashan Benedict, the Metropolitan Police Department’s executive assistant police chief, said the shooting was an exchange of gunfire between people in two cars and left three people injured.
One of the people who was shot was a woman who was attending the game and was struck while she was outside the stadium. Her injuries weren’t considered life-threatening.
Two people who were in one of the cars later walked into a local hospital with gunshot wounds and were being questioned by investigators.
Investigators are still trying to locate the second vehicle involved in the shooting.
The scenes of chaos and fear at Nationals Park are truly horrifying.
— Chris (@ChrisBCary) July 18, 2021
This is horrifying. Prayers to everyone at Nationals Park. Unreal scene https://t.co/oCj3SRePj4
— David Maher (@davidmaher08) July 18, 2021
Nationals-Padres game halted after gunshots outside Nationals Park - The Washington Post. Horrific https://t.co/zij8qoRUOE
— Maury Goldberg (@Beelover2008) July 18, 2021
Oh my God. What a horrific scene at Nationals Park this evening. So shocking. https://t.co/99RSTfPQyl
— Ben Schwartz (@bls1999) July 18, 2021
The shooting at Nationals Park is horrific. Sending prayers to everyone that was there or in the area
— Erica (@Seattle_Girl452) July 18, 2021
with Associated Press
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