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Game 154: Braves at Nats

Sep 24, 2010, 7:40 PM EDT

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Nationals shoot for their first four-game winning streak of the season tonight.

The Nationals somehow managed to win yesterday's game against the Astros in convincing fashion despite having neither Ryan Zimmerman nor Adam Dunn in their lineup. They'll get Dunn back tonight, his elbow and hamstring having healed enough to allow him to play. But they won't have Zimmerman, who continues to be bothered by a strained ribcage muscle and could miss several days.

The Nats certainly wouldn't mind having their full starting lineup tonight against the Braves, because they'll need everything they've got against Tim Hudson. These numbers have been repeated several times here this season (every time he pitches against the Nats) but it has to be said again: Hudson OWNS the Nationals to the tune of a 10-1 record and 1.55 lifetime ERA.

Meanwhile, Jordan Zimmermann returns to the mound, trying once again to recapture the dominant form he displayed in Florida three weeks ago but that has eluded him since. Not that his status within the organization isn't already secure, but it would be nice to see at least one more glimpse of the good Zimmermann before the end of the season. He's only got one more start after this, so time's running out.

Check back for updates throughout…

BRAVES at NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m.
TV: MASN
Radio: WFED-1500 AM, WWFD-820 AM
Weather: Sunny, 89 degrees, Wind 12 mph out to CF

STARTING LINEUPS
NATIONALS (65-88)
2B Danny Espinosa
CF Roger Bernadina
SS Ian Desmond
1B Adam Dunn

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  1. slopitchtom - Sep 24, 2010 at 8:15 PM

    Please, someone explain to me why Harris is batting 6th. It's one thing to have him in the lineup, but batting 6th!

  2. Sam - Sep 24, 2010 at 8:45 PM

    Because each of the three batters batting behind him are, in fact, worse hitters than him.

  3. NatsJack in Florida - Sep 24, 2010 at 9:27 PM

    Jordan Zimmermann MAY be a worse hitter than Harris but as far as this season goes, I'll take Pudge and Gonzo over him any day.

  4. NatsJack in Florida - Sep 24, 2010 at 9:38 PM

    OK …. the FIL Nats played at Kissimmee this afternoon and got beat by the Astros. I did get to see Bryce harper knock a triple off the 410' sign just to the left field side of the CF batters eye in the first inning. That drove in Eury Perez who had led off with a sharp single to left and sac bunted to second by Blake Kelso. JP Ramirez followed with a sac fly to drive in Harper which accounted for all the runs (unless they somehow managed to score in the top of the 9th after Bryce led off with a strikeout).Bryce walked in the third and singled to CF in the sixth so with the K in the 9th he ended up 2 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored.AJ Cole threw the first two innings and looked pretty good showing a sharp breaking ball while giving up one run on 2 hits and a walk.I'll post a little later about some of the younger players that impressed the 15 or so of us that weren't affiliated with either club sitting in the stands.

  5. BinM - Sep 24, 2010 at 10:56 PM

    NatsJack: Thanks for the 'eyes-on' report from Viera. News on FIL developments is hard to glean from the various websites.

  6. BQ - Sep 25, 2010 at 12:08 AM

    MLb shows 49 pitches against Zmann's name. Hope we manage to hold on to this lead and knock someone out of the playoffs.

  7. NatsJack in Florida - Sep 25, 2010 at 12:10 AM

    Am I the only one watching the game on TV tonite? Is everyone else at the game?

  8. BQ - Sep 25, 2010 at 12:17 AM

    I am following it online, using live mlb scoreboard. I guess everyone went to watch after we won three games in a row. LOLOMG bases loaded against Zmann. Can't imagine him getting out of it without giving up a run.

  9. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2010 at 12:20 AM

    NatsJack I'm watching TV and lurking. Waiting for more info from you.

  10. kgwcoach - Sep 25, 2010 at 12:24 AM

    Bad decision to slide into first. Slide slows you down.!!

  11. BQ - Sep 25, 2010 at 12:37 AM

    I am glad to be proven wrong about the previous inning. 83 pitches in 5 innings, not really efficient. I really hope Nationals win this one because I am already sitting at an anime club meeting watching a dubbed anime, worst thing happened to me all week.

  12. sec3 - Sep 25, 2010 at 12:40 AM

    What, watch on TV and miss all the intel in here, plus no Charlie and Dave??

  13. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2010 at 12:43 AM

    Watch TV, Listen to the radio, lurk. Great way to spend the evening.

  14. NatsJack in Florisda - Sep 25, 2010 at 12:48 AM

    FIL games are interesting. I'd compare to high "a" ball with an interspersal of quality "AA" guys. The two teams agree on the format before the game and today it was decided that both teams would use 2 DH's.Destin Hood and JP Ramirez were our DH's. Hitting wise, aside from Bryce and his two hits, the only guys that consistently put good wood on the ball today were Eury Perez (CF) and David Souza (3B)Jason Martinson looked good covering alot of ground in LF and David Souza made a couple of nice plays at 3B but otherwise the defense was sloppy (3 E's plus a couple of misplayed balls).The Nats used 8 pitchers today and all except for Chad Jenkins looked pretty good. jenkins pitched to 4 hitters in the 4th inning and walked all four of them.Starter AJ Cole looked good. Ryan Mattheus threw for the first time after coming off TJ surgery and threw real well in his one inning.Remember the name Miguel Navarro. He's a 17yo Dominican that looks alot bigger than the 6'2" 180lbs. he's listed as. Throws hard with movement. He broke a couple of bats with his heater and has a nice sharp curve to go with it.The other guys that threw today and looked solid were Graham Hicks (LH). Pedro Encanacion (RF), Mark Herrera (RH) all thowing 1 inning apiece and Bobby Hansen, a 6'5 left hander that threw 2 sold innings.I'm going to check out the Nats/Braves tomorrow so I'll post what I see at that game. I believe Robbie Ray is throwing.Oh, by the way, a couple of guys who saw yesterdays game in Viera said Sammy Solis was real solid in his 2 innings.

  15. Sunderland - Sep 25, 2010 at 12:56 AM

    NatsJack – Thanks a ton. Real nice to hear this stuff.

  16. Sec3MySofa - Sep 25, 2010 at 1:25 AM

    Agreed, thanks for the reports. Consider yourself owed a beer and brat.

  17. BQ - Sep 25, 2010 at 1:27 AM

    I am not sure if we should be happy that a reliever leads our team in wins and SO. But I am really happy for Clippard. OMG did Willie just an insider? Awesome. We need to have this guy back as our leadoff next season. Just kidding.

  18. Sec3MySofa - Sep 25, 2010 at 1:28 AM

    Slopitchtom, I think Willie Harris just answered your question…

  19. dj in Fl. - Sep 25, 2010 at 1:56 AM

    What an enjoyable game. There is nothing better than an inside the park HR.But isn't it great that when our starter can go 5 or 6 and not give up 5 or 6, we do not have to watch Riggleman have to create something from nothing. No double switches or defensive shuffles in trying overcome an insurmountable deficit. With Kasten leaving I do not think they will change managers also. So give Riggs a good starting rotation and see what happens. I think a number of our Insider participants would be plesantly surprised with the results.

  20. Michael J. Hayde - Sep 25, 2010 at 2:19 AM

    And we're one-third of the way to that 12-game winning streak to finish the season. Go Nats!!!

  21. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2010 at 2:32 AM

    Watched half on my iPhone and half from mlb from the 'puter. Not as much as last night's game .. full of web gems galore!Still Dunn notches 5 RBI after a rest … perhaps he should be rested moreduring the season to keep him fresh?Thanks for the update on the FIL Natsjack!

  22. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2010 at 2:33 AM

    Tonight's Attendance: 22,000+ People still think it's fun to go to the ballpark, even when the team is finishing up another last place season. Late September weeknight games against the Houston Astros were always doomed to draw miniscule crowds. Good to see the fans return tonight.

  23. natsfan1a - Sep 25, 2010 at 2:43 AM

    Loved the inside-the-parker (was watching on tv) even more than Dunn's two. What can I say? It was awesome. Good for you, Willy!Four in a row. Who'd a thunk it?(And the Captcha is "lickedem"? O-kay. :-))

  24. sec3....err Anonymous. - Sep 25, 2010 at 2:56 AM

    hmmmm…if I sez it, I gets a whoopin …

  25. natsfan1a - Sep 25, 2010 at 2:59 AM

    heheAnd apologies to Mr. Harris, whose given name I mistyped in my excitement. W-I-L-L-I-E!!

  26. Traveler8 - Sep 25, 2010 at 4:29 AM

    Good time at the park tonight. NatsJack, thanks for your reports, good to come home to read them. Please keep posting.

  27. Big Cat - Sep 25, 2010 at 10:43 AM

    Natsjack……good stuff.Kind of exciting knowing a lot of these kids could be in Potomac next season.Checked on this Navarro kid. His stats say his problem is control. 20 bb's in 20 innings in the Gulf Coast League. Course, thats why he's in Fla. to work on these things

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 58 47 --
ATLANTA 58 50 1.5
MIAMI 53 54 6.0
NEW YORK 52 56 7.5
PHILADELPHIA 47 61 12.5
Through Wednesday's games

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THU: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
FRI: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SUN: Phillies at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
MON: Orioles at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
TUE: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
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