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Game 25: Nats at Marlins

May 2, 2010, 3:57 PM EDT


Photo courtesy Florida Marlins
A win today would ensure the Nats' third straight series victory.

How many times last season did the Nationals find themselves staring at a series finale, coming off two straight losses and desperately needing one win to avoid getting swept? Seemed like that happened at least once a week, if not twice.

Well, it's happened only twice this season so far (both times against the Phillies, with the Nats winning the finale both times to salvage something). Instead, the Nationals have put themselves in position to win most series by winning game one, as was the case Friday night in Miami.

So even though they played a stinker last night at Sun Life Stadium, they still have a chance to leave town with a series victory. This would actually be their third straight winning series, their fifth straight non-losing series (four wins and a tie).

John Lannan takes the mound this afternoon, looking to put together only his second quality start in six tries this season. Josh Johnson (career 5-0 vs. Washington) starts for the Marlins.

And unlike the last two nights, I'll actually be watching this one on TV and will share some thoughts along the way. So check back all afternoon…

NATIONALS AT MARLINS
Where: Sun Life Stadium
Gametime: 1:10 p.m.
TV: MASN2-HD
Radio: WFED-1500 AM, WWFD-820 AM
Weather: Partly cloudy, 87 degrees, Wind 13 mph RF to LF

STARTING LINEUPS
NATIONALS (13-11)
CF Nyjer Morgan
2B Adam Kennedy
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam Dunn

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  1. Souldrummer - May 2, 2010 at 4:46 PM

    Glad to hear you'll be around today Mark, and hope you're enjoying some time with your family over the weekend. You've been delivering high quality content, and I've enjoyed your work tremendously.

  2. Nervous Nats Fan - May 2, 2010 at 5:21 PM

    The GameCast is being really funky. Can you clarify what happened with Nyjer there?

  3. Mark Zuckerman - May 2, 2010 at 5:24 PM

    Nervous Nats Fan: Morgan took off for second while Johnson was still in the stretch. Johnson twirled around to make what should have been an easy throw to second to nail Nyjer, but his throw was way to the left of the bag and went into center field. They scored it a caught stealing and an E1.

  4. Anonymous - May 2, 2010 at 5:45 PM

    Game is not on DirecTV in Olney! MASN has blacked it out to DirecTV! Boooo!

  5. Nervous Nats Fan - May 2, 2010 at 5:47 PM

    @Anon: On NJ at the WP, people suggested that you might be able to watch it on channel 729.

  6. Anonymous - May 2, 2010 at 6:29 PM

    Lannan now has the highest WHIP in the majors among pitchers with at least 1 IP per team game. And he's not getting squeezed all that much, he's just doing a bad job of locating his pitches.

  7. Anonymous - May 2, 2010 at 8:06 PM

    unless the Senators do something SS will get his first loss of the year

  8. Doc - May 2, 2010 at 8:16 PM

    Good job covering from TV Mark! However, it does support the theory that your presence in the box is not a coincidence to the Nats winning. When you're at the Park on Tuesday, make sure you're in disguise when you take your patented pictures.

  9. Anonymous - May 2, 2010 at 8:39 PM

    Typical Nats, Lannan stinks and SS is human, not optimistic.

  10. Anonymous - May 2, 2010 at 10:28 PM

    I'm sorry these last two games looked like the 2008 and 2009 Nats. Anemic, accepting defeat, playing out the string, phoning it in.Maybe the wild card hopes were premature.

  11. Jim Webster - May 2, 2010 at 11:03 PM

    Instead of wild card fantasies, equally idle speculation envisions rotation for second half: Livo, SS, Wang, Olsen, Atilano (or Thompson)?

  12. Anonymous8 - May 2, 2010 at 11:43 PM

    Anon at 6:28. I agree when it came to the pitchers. It looked like BP. I saw a lot of pride in the position players especially Zim and Pudge and Morgan.Willingham looks exhausted and Guzman looked lost. The RF platoon still playing AAA.

  13. Anonymous - May 2, 2010 at 11:44 PM

    Webster – you're okay with Olsen or he's in your fantasized rotation by default?

  14. natsfan reduxit - May 3, 2010 at 12:59 AM

    … okay, Lannan loses with a poor effort; the Nats lose a series; Strasburg – horrors! – loses a game…. now's the time to see if what we've enjoyed so far is a flash in the pan, or the real thing.Go Nats!!

  15. natsfan1a - May 3, 2010 at 1:18 AM

    So, did they leave the Elvis Wig in Florida with Hanley Ramirez or is it coming home? :-)

  16. Aeoliano - May 3, 2010 at 1:29 AM

    Instead of wild card fantasies, equally idle speculation envisions rotation for second half: Livo, SS, Wang, Olsen, Atilano (or Thompson)?That's a pretty huge fantasy if you ask me. Especially the Wang part. Olsen is really all the way back … yet. Wang still has to go through what Olsen did … he has yet to pitch!!!!! Atilano is doing well so far. Strasburg looks like a surer thing but who knows what happens when he gets to the majors?

  17. Aeoliano - May 3, 2010 at 1:31 AM

    They need to do something about the "mop up crew" their stats are horrific! Outside of Clippard and Capps they have something that looks worst than last year's bullpen.

  18. Sasskuash - May 3, 2010 at 1:29 PM

    Mark- congrats on the new glory days ad banner across the top! Its great watching this experiment grow.

  19. Pete - May 3, 2010 at 1:54 PM

    Does anyone have problems with MASN 2 on Fios? It seems like when the O's are on MASN and the Nats are on MASN 2, Fios only shows the game on channel 1, which is not high def. I've searched and can't find the channel elsewhere. Does anyone else have this problem?

  20. Tcostant - May 3, 2010 at 1:58 PM

    So I went to the Strasburg start on Sunday and saw him a few weeks back too (in that strange 10:30am weekday start). Here is what I saw:- The fastball seemed harded now than a few weeks back.- Only his fastball was "working". A few weeks ago, his slider, curve and fastball where all plus pitches and close to unhittable. On Sunday, his fastball was "popping the glove", but his curveball was off – a lot. One slider was used for a strikeout, but most of the day it was out of the strike zone.In two innings, he threw a lot of pitches.I think we see one more AA start, before he moves up top AAA (if he pitches well).

  21. Tcostant - May 3, 2010 at 2:01 PM

    Oh – I forgot one thing. The Harrisburg team is a bad defensive team. They made a lot of errors and mistakes. The second baseball on Sunday couldn't catch or field at all.

  22. natsfan1a - May 3, 2010 at 2:09 PM

    Speaking of Glory Days, might that be a good place for an NI meet-up at some point? I like the food and service at our local branches (NoVa), but not sure whether there's one close to a Metro station, which might be a plus for those coming from farther afield.

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 55 44 --
ATLANTA 55 46 1.0
NEW YORK 48 53 8.0
MIAMI 47 52 8.5
PHILADELPHIA 43 57 12.5
Through Wednesday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
THU: OFF
FRI: Nats at Reds, 7:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Reds, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Reds, 1:10 p.m.
MON: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
WED: Nats at Marlins, 12:40 p.m.
Full season schedule

Mark joins Rob Carlin and Joe Orsulak every Thursday at 4 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet for a half-hour show on the Nats, Orioles and rest of MLB. Re-airs Thursdays at 11:30 p.m., Saturdays at 9 a.m. and Sundays at 11:30 a.m.

ON THE RADIO

As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...

MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.

*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.

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