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Nats vs. Mets — 3/6/10

Mar 6, 2010, 4:46 PM EST

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Space Coast Stadium, filling up for today's home opener against the Mets.

VIERA, Fla. — It's a beautiful, if somewhat chilly, Saturday afternoon at Space Coast Stadium, and the crowd is beginning to file in for the Nationals' spring home opener against the Mets. Presumptive Opening Day starter John Lannan is on the mound for the Nats, Mike Pelfrey pitching for New York.

Pelfrey is one of the few legitimate Mets who made the trip. By my count, only nine players on their 40-man roster are here today, three of them pitchers. The Nats, meanwhile, will be sending out their first respectable lineup of the spring after sending mostly backups on the road.

Check back throughout the afternoon for updates…

Space Coast Stadium, Viera, Fla.
Gametime: 1:05 p.m.
TV/Radio: WFAN-AM (Mets radio via XM and MLB Gameday Audio)
Weather: Sunny, 64 degrees, Wind 13 mph out to RF

CF Nyjer Morgan
DH Cristian Guzman
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam Dunn

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  1. Anonymous - Mar 6, 2010 at 5:17 PM

    I'm interested in how this group of pitchers debuts… Granted, they're facing the Mets "B-squad", but live competition is always a better test than bullpens & batting practice. -BinM-

  2. FakeReiss - Mar 6, 2010 at 6:14 PM

    "1:05 p.m. — The Nats take the field to the strains of John Fogerty's "Centerfield." First of 187 times we'll hear that song this season."Does that mean they're no longer going to be taking the field to fireworks at Nationals Park? Always thought that was rather pretentious and condescending of them to do that. Spending money on fireworks instead of players. How cheap can you get?

  3. JMW4th - Mar 6, 2010 at 6:21 PM

    I wouldn't call any lineup with AAAAlberto GonzAAAAlez in it "respectable".

  4. Chuckles - Mar 6, 2010 at 7:30 PM

    I've noticed the last two games have been carried on radio on the opponent's side. Why aren't the Nationals doing at least weekend games on radio? Would make for good background noise instead of insufferable college basketball games.

  5. Mark Zuckerman - Mar 6, 2010 at 7:32 PM

    Chuckles: Charlie and Dave have been here the last couple days, but they're just doing research in preparation for their season debut on Monday. They'll have four games next week: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. And MASN will be showing Strasburg's start Tuesday.

  6. Anonymous - Mar 6, 2010 at 7:35 PM

    Mark, you're complaining about the weather again…

  7. HabsProf - Mar 6, 2010 at 7:36 PM

    Mark: Like a lot of Nats fans, I'm curious as to how Adam Dunn looks at first. Does he look like he has improved? I'm not just talking about this game, but also in all the drills that you must have observed him taking.

  8. Mark Zuckerman - Mar 6, 2010 at 7:40 PM

    Anon: "It's a beautiful, if somewhat chilly, Saturday afternoon…" Where was I complaining? This may be the nicest day we've had down here in two-plus weeks!HabProf: So far, so good with Dunn, but it's way too early to make any real evaluation of him in the field. Let me see him a bit more, get a few more chances, before declaring anything.

  9. JayB - Mar 6, 2010 at 7:42 PM

    Wfan guys said Dunn should have at least knocked down the Will N error throw….Said he was NOT a MLB first baseman.

  10. Doc - Mar 6, 2010 at 7:48 PM

    Hey Mark! Another Nats pitcher(Shawn Estes)plays Home-Run Derby with the oposition. Where does Frank get these guys–Help Wanted Ads??

  11. FakeReiss - Mar 6, 2010 at 7:49 PM

    Hey, anyone who's upset that the Nats aren't on radio today should come on over and join me and my fellow Yankee fan FakeNeedham. We're watching MLB Network and catching up with our favorite team that's now featuring retreads from the team we love to hate. So far Zech Zinicola has sent his catcher to the hospital and Jonathan Albaladejo got lit up. You can take the boy out of NatsTown, but you can't take the NatsTown out of the boy!

  12. Doc - Mar 6, 2010 at 7:54 PM

    So how's Willie Harris a lock? I'm a Mike Morse fan. So far he's providing more offense than Willie demonstrated all last year!

  13. HabsProf - Mar 6, 2010 at 7:57 PM

    Mark: Thanks. I recognized it was early (and for that matter, Dunn is still supposed to be a work in progress at first) – I just wanted early impressions. But I know what you mean when you say it is early. We are all falling all over ourselves with respect to Nats pitching, but (repeat after me) it is still early.I'll start worrying when a Nats pitcher stinks consistently for 3 or 4 consecutive starts.

  14. HabsProf - Mar 6, 2010 at 8:11 PM

    I'm starting to think the catcher should just call a pitch out for the first pitch.

  15. phil dunn - Mar 6, 2010 at 8:38 PM

    Looks like the same crappy team as 2008 and 2009–lousy pitching, poor defense (Dunn) and no clutch hitting. The Nats follow the same pattern every year. They get creamed in the Grapefruit League, then carry over their losing habits to the regular season.

  16. Nats fan in NJ - Mar 6, 2010 at 8:52 PM

    Two pitchers I'm most curious about are Thompson and Chico. Thompson's start today seems to have been encouraging. Of course, any pitcher that doesn't give up an immediate home run is probably considered encouraging at this point. I'm looking forward to "seeing" how Chico does tomorrow. He remains my dark horse favorite for the #5 spot, especially with how these first several games have gone!

  17. HabsProf - Mar 6, 2010 at 9:16 PM

    Repeat after me: small sample size, small sample size, small sample size…..Ugh. Surely there were some good things we can take from this?

  18. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_is_Too_Pessimistic_for_Me - Mar 6, 2010 at 9:34 PM

    Mark, do I start to get worried NOW?I'm worried Lannan is not a No. 1.I'm worried none of the young pitchers are ready.I'm worried Zimm and Dunn won't hit enough early.I'm worried the bullpen is still eligible to be a Superfund site.I'm worried they're going to go 6-and-24 in ST, and start the season 6-and-36.I'm just plain worried.

  19. peric - Mar 6, 2010 at 9:36 PM

    Leaving where they left off at the beginning of last season with Manny?

  20. Dave - Mar 6, 2010 at 9:37 PM

    Hard to see much good in a pitching squad that gives up 40 runs in 3 days.

  21. peric - Mar 6, 2010 at 9:48 PM

    Wilkie's multiple appearances this spring does make one wonder … is he gaining enough trust to be a potential reliever on the big club?

  22. Doc - Mar 7, 2010 at 3:49 PM

    Mark, as President of NatsNation, you need to tell Frank that it's time to start checking the stands for pitching reinforcements. There are guys sitting there, only too willing to give up home runs and walks. Moreover they'll do it for free–won't cost him and the Learners any money! The management of the other teams might help kick in some bucks for uniforms.





As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2015 schedule (subject to change)...

MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
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