Skip to content

Nats Insider: Phase 2

Jan 24, 2011, 3:36 PM EDT

Upon launching Nats Insider some 357 days ago, I had no expectation whatsoever for this site. My intention at the time was simple: Find an outlet in which I could continue covering the Washington Nationals, hopefully reaching some small segment of the fan base.

Along the way, this place became something far greater than I ever imagined it could, building a dedicated following of readers from all over the world. (At last check, this site has been accessed from 151 different countries. Still waiting for that first click from Paraguay.)

There was, however, another objective to this whole exercise: To gain full-time employment. As successful as the site has been, its profit-making capabilities remain modest. It also can't offer a health care plan or a 401K.

So I'm happy to report today that I've been hired full-time by CSNwashington.com as Nationals beat writer, effective immediately. Most of you know I had been writing articles for CSN on a freelance basis for the last year. I'll be writing even more regularly now.

I'm also happy to report that as part of the arrangement, Comcast SportsNet has purchased Nats Insider. They'll assume ownership of the site, but I'll continue to publish it as a complementary blog alongsideRead more ยป

119 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. MGG - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:38 PM

    Glad to hear it Mark! Never was there a more deserving person then you for such a position.

  2. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:41 PM

    Congrats Mark on the new job. Very well deserved and glad to see that your coverage will continue.No chance going back to the Wash Times? I hear Rev. Moon is hiring again. ;)

  3. BinM - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:41 PM

    Congratulation, Mark! This is truly great news (for you, and all of us as well).

  4. NatsJack in Florida - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:43 PM

    Great going, Mark…. I've been waiting for this announcement ever since our discussion at the Winter Meetings. The CSN people apparently know a good thing when they see it.See you in Viera in a couple of weeks.

  5. SCNatsFan - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:44 PM

    Good for you Mark. I found this site late, well after the season ended, yet visit every day for the articles and the intelligent conversation in the comments section. I'm so happy for you that finacially the burden will be eased on you; look forward to seeing what your new project brings to the table.

  6. natsfan1a - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:44 PM

    That's great news, Mark! Congrats on landing the full-time position (and congrats to Comcast on locking up both you and your faithful following ;-)). I'm delighted to learn that the Nats Insider blog and community will continue to exist, as it's become my fave Nats site. I'm proud to have gotten in on the ground floor, as it were.

  7. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:44 PM

    Ditto Congrats and thanks for looking out for us, too. Keep up the good work.

  8. Kevin Rusch, Section406 - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:46 PM

    Congratulations, Mark. I'm really encouraged to see great journalism get rewarded by the market.

  9. natsfan1a - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:46 PM

    Oh, and bookmark duly noted and added.

  10. Jenn Jenson - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:46 PM

    Adding my voice to what I'm sure will become a very large choir: Congratulations Mark! You've done a great job here, and Comcast is wise to make you a full partner with their team.

  11. Natsochist - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:48 PM

    Mark – congratulations! You've got undeniably the best coverage of the team on the web, and that was cemented when you arrived at spring training last year and scooped everyone on Detwiler's injury.Kudos to CSN for picking up a huge asset to their team; I look forward to another year of great coverage.

  12. D'Gourds - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:55 PM

    Congrats Mark–a good example of making the best of a bad situation when the Times imploded. Also some excellent entrepeneurship. Keep up the great work. You are destined to be a big part of the Nationals' history.

  13. CB - Jan 24, 2011 at 3:56 PM

    Long live Nats Insider!

  14. Arlington BigFish - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:01 PM

    You go, guy !!! And here I was all ready to write another check ;-) Reading this blog has become one of my favorite web pass-times. In fact, I probably spend way more time than I should absorbing the passion of my fellow Nats-lovers. But I can't help myself.

  15. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:03 PM

    Congrats Mark! Great to hear the good news and (selfishly :) ) that you'll be continuing to cover the Nats.Thanks again,Natslifer

  16. SonnyG10 - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:03 PM

    Mark, congratulations on full time paid employment and benefits. I am thrilled you will still be a Nats beat writer and I will follow you on both sites! Also, thank you Comcast!

  17. Bowdenball - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:05 PM

    Congratulations to Mark, and of course you have our gratitude for making the continued existence of this great site part of the deal!

  18. Andrew - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:06 PM

    Mark said…One particular added benefit of this new arrangement is that readers no longer will need to subscribe to Nats Insider. My hope is to make all that extra content that went out to subscribers last season free and available to everyone via both sites. Mark, in our own small way I hope we all financially helped to bridge the gap for you last year. It was great being part of a unique concept as founding members and happy Nats Insider will continue. As you said "its profit-making capabilities remain modest" so I am even happier for you that you have a full-time position with benefits and I hear Comcast has big future plans with the Peacock.Again, congratulations!

  19. Janner33 - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:06 PM

    Richly deserved congratulations are in order Mark! I couldn't possibly count how many times I've clicked on this site the past 357 days! The number one site for Nats breaking news :) I look forward to following you on the new site, and to continue visiting this one as well. Congrats again!

  20. JaneB - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:10 PM

    I am so happy for you, AND us, AND the Nats. You for the financial stability and the recognition that your gamble last year paid off. Us, because we still get you. And each other. And the Nats because you are helping to make their fans smarter and more attached with every post you create. I'll be sending the check I'd earmarked for you to the Nats' community charity (the name of which I forget, but will soon find out, something about a Dream, maybe?). Anyway. SO happy about all of it. 22 days till pitchers and catchers! Go Nats! Go Mark!

  21. Nattydread - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:13 PM

    Congrats!!! Great job Mark. Keep it up!

  22. David - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:13 PM

    Congratulations and well deserved. You took a bad situation and took a risk and I hope it paid off for you. I hope you still have editorial control.Since I'm not writing the check do I still have my own sportswriter?

  23. Stew Magnuson - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:14 PM

    Very wise move on the part of CSN, both hiring you and purchasing the Blog. I'm happy to have chipped a little in over the past year. It was content worth paying for.I spent a year in uninsured poverty freelancing, earned about $22,000 in a year and was fortunate enough not get in an accident or contract a major disease. But on the bright side, I got to cover the Dodgers for a season. I'll be looking for some spring training updates while on a trip later this month to the United Arab Emirates.

  24. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:15 PM

    Oh, thank goodness. I thought we were going to have to take up a pool to get up enough to cover the health insurance for Mrs. Z and you. Thank goodness, CSNWashington has stepped up to the plate. Loved the head shot of you with a tie. Red Smith would have been proud.Mark, you're the best, the absolute best. You carry us on our worst days, and we all try to add a little spice in our own little ways. Your entreprenurial spirit is to be cherished, and admired. CSNWashington is getting a real pro, and we get to keep you too. As they say in the business, a great trade for both teams.Besides, if not for this site, where else would JayB and NatsJack in Fla have to go during the day?On behalf of all of us, thanks for keeping us all on your (expanded) 40-man (and woman). Obama should run you up the flagpole during his State of the Union as an example of the kind of spirit that keeps this country great. Sincere thanks for not throwing us under the bus.

  25. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:16 PM

    Very well deserved. We as Nats fans are better for the success of your endeavor!!

  26. Carl in 309 - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:20 PM

    Here's to full employment for sports writers! Kudos to you, and may we continue to read & discuss the Nats on this blog. Hoping to catch you again late in ST at Viera.

  27. Sec3MySofa - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:22 PM

    Well done, sir!

  28. Rich - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:24 PM

    Congrats! I have really enjoyed coming to this site and I'm glad that you will continue both sides. Thanks so much for producing this wonderful content!

  29. Doc - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:25 PM

    Good things happen to good people, MarkMeister. You've given us a lot, and now CSN/Comcast is recognizing your genuine and honest efforts. As you have resoundingly demonstrated, enterprise is best when it's a personal goal!

  30. HHover - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:30 PM

    This is great news, Mark, and well deserved for you. For us denizens of the insider, I'm glad to hear that you'll be able to maintain this lively forum you've built over the last year. Congrats!

  31. Jim Kurtzke - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:31 PM

    This is great news, Mark. A great outcome to an ambitious experiment in new media. Way to go!

  32. Kenz aFan - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:32 PM

    Congratulations, Mark. Very well deserved. I, along with everyone here, look forward to following you both via CSNwashington.com and here, in stereo, so to speak.

  33. sjm 308 - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:37 PM

    Man, I was all set to take the check and go buy beer and wine but JaneB has shamed me into doing something similar. I have always supported SOME and they will now get a little more.Congratulations and the new bookmark is duly noted. I just wanted to let this group know how much I enjoy reading comments here. Not nearly as snarky or negative as NJ and in my opinion very knowledgable. I think we are all lucky that Mark has found success and I can't imagine not having this site for enjoyment. See all of you who supported my move to the 300 level in just a couple months.Go Nats!!

  34. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:39 PM

    Another thought for everyone here… when you're on Mark's CSN site, make sure you click on some ads every now and then – if they follow most revenue models these days, CSN gets paid based on click-throughs and not eyeballs. So let's support him by making Mark the most clicked-through site out there!Cheers,Natslifer

  35. Les in NC - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:41 PM

    Thanks Mark, I really appreciate everything that you have done to for us as Nats fans! It has been fun following the team with you ever since you headed down to Florida with no guarantees that you would be able to stay the entire time. You have gone above and beyond what any other beat writer does for the fans, and we (I know I speak for everyone on this) are extremely grateful! Another thanks to ComCast for realizing that Mark's value and fan following are worth hiring on as a full time writer 'with benefits'. Congrats!!

  36. John C. - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:42 PM

    Congratulations, Mark! I salute you for having the vision to see a way to keep doing what you love to do in the midst of chaos and uncertainty, and having the drive and determination to make that way work. I look forward to continuing on NI even without the financial investment, and to adding to CSN's hits as well.Now, if you could just put your talents to work landing a true #1 starter for this year ;)

  37. Richard - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:43 PM

    Great news! Congrats. Glad to see CSNWashington recognizing sportswriting talent; CSN will become a regular stop for me now.

  38. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:46 PM

    Mark,When I first read about you in the New Yorker article about spring training in April, I knew I had to check out your blog. Given the arc of that story about you, I am extremely pleased to see you back on your feet. You're worked hard for this. Congratulations, and I'll definitely keep reading through 2011 and beyond.Jamal

  39. Wally - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:46 PM

    MarkGreat news, and congrats on the CSN job. You have created a terrific forum for Nats conversations, Lerner bashing/defending, unbridled prospect love and Philly hate, and we really appreciate it.Wally

  40. JohninMPLS - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:49 PM

    Congratulations, Mark. While this is great news for all of us, all of it is due only to your hard work and talent.I don't post here often, but I visit every day and read every post and nearly every comment. Your coverage is nonpareil, and it's great to see that excellence officially recognized.I was already poised to pay for this year's coverage. Instead, I will make a donation in your name to the Washington Nationals Dream Foundation.

  41. dj in Fl. - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:57 PM

    Your situation was our breakfast table discussion this morning, and it is the win, win we had hoped for. You have earned the right to have the best of both worlds.With the roster set,and the coverage covered, it is time for the boys to report, and you all to come on down. The weather is always fine for baseball.

  42. joemktg - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:57 PM

    Congrats Mark.How great is it that CSN is picking up the T&E?

  43. Traveler8 - Jan 24, 2011 at 4:59 PM

    Mark, this is great news, glad to hear that you were able to work things out the way you wanted, and most happy that the blog is a key part it.

  44. Traveler8 - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:03 PM

    Just went to your CSN page – I see that now you are a corporate type, you wear suits and ties!

  45. court, rfk428 - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:04 PM

    Congrats Mark, you've earned your success and I'm glad to hear you're officially back on the Nats' beat. Bravo!

  46. Positively Half St. - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:15 PM

    Excellent, Mark. It has been a pleasure reading and discussing the Nats with you. I hope your good luck rubs off on the team, and proves to be a great benefit to CSNwashington as well. We'll stick with you, and I will try to be a regular of your new employers web sites.+1/2St.

  47. erocks33 - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:20 PM

    Count me in amongst the many throngs giving their congratulations Mark! And congrats to Mrs. Z for her patience and understanding during this challenging year.And now that you'll be at CSN, please lay the groundwork for a TRUE baseball-oriented daily show on their network! It could encapsulate the Nats (and I guess O's stuff, if need be) as well as their minor-league teams (I'm sure some viewers would like regular video updates of one Mr. Harper). What are you waiting for? Chop chop!

  48. TimDz - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:28 PM

    I'll add my kudo's as well, Mark. I follow the Nats faithfully and use your site to keep up to date while occasionally getting into trouble with some of the other posters…This blog is by far the most enjoyable of the Natosphere. The fans are quite knowledgable (don't include myself in the group, but I am learning) and for the most part, respectful. I occasionally head to WAPO, but there is an element there (those who go there know exactly what that element is…) that makes it far less enjoyable.Long Live Nats Insider…

  49. Berndaddy - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:30 PM

    Awesome news Mark! Thanks for your coverage and transparency. What a wide ranging trip you took us on last year. Dude you rock and now you've got a bigger platform to rock. I hope your agent can get you more TV time, too. That'll mean more coverage from another outlet. Thanks again and good luck.

  50. N. Cognito - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:32 PM

    Why stop with CSNWashington. I hear there's an opening at MSNBC.Congratulations.

  51. Avar - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:39 PM

    Congrats Mark! I'm very happy that you can continue to cover the Nats and in a way that provides much improved security for your family.Having someone who has covered the Nats from the beginning is invaluable. I waited many years to see a team return here and I love benefiting from you outstanding knowledge of the team and the game.I was nervous about this season and very pleased that your coverage will continue.

  52. Bratislava, Slovakia - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:47 PM

    Bravo! I know I've linked into the site from at least half a dozen countries, but I also know that there were already people in each of them reading your stuff.

  53. Keith - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:48 PM

    Yippie! I remember when you invented Nats Insider. I told my wife that it was as hopeless as my beloved Nats and I would be buying a season ticket to it just the same. What's happened since is inspirational to all us could'a, should'a, would'a(s).

  54. cadeck13 - Jan 24, 2011 at 5:52 PM

    Congratulations Mark! I seriously can't think of anyone more deserving of this than you. CSN wisely gained the best beat writer around as well as the best Nationals blog. And make sure they know that they better treat you royal or they have to answer to us!

  55. upperdeck4 - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:01 PM

    This news is great, Mark! I was getting ready to pony up for another year because I so enjoy NI; it was good being a "charter member". Congratulations.

  56. Mississippi Snopes - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:02 PM

    Wonderful news, Mark. You've done a tremendous job at creating a safe place for intelligent and civil discussion of the Nats. I can remember posting a comment here after 11 p.m. a few months ago, which shortly after I posted it, I realized was too "political" and would generate needless non-baseball controversy. But before I could get back on and delete it, you had already done it for me. I was delighted.The Post's Adam Kilgore and Dave Sheinin both do an excellent job as sports journalists — but the Post's reader comments are all too often marred by posts by anonymous people with names like "Poopy McPoop." Thank you so much for maintaining this tiny patch of civilization on the Internet.And congratulations as well on one of the most nimble reactions I've seen to the ongoing train wreck of print media colliding with the Internet.

  57. Dougie - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:08 PM

    Congratulations. It's nice being paid for doing what you love, isn't it?Now figure out some way I can be paid for reading your blogs. ..three or four times a day!

  58. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:09 PM

    Mid-day nominee for Post of the Day goes to:N. Cognito said… Why stop with CSNWashington. I hear there's an opening at MSNBC.Tremnendous!

  59. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:10 PM

    Mid-day nominee for Post of the Day goes to:N. Cognito said… Why stop with CSNWashington. I hear there's an opening at MSNBC.Tremendous!

  60. Paul - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:11 PM

    Congrats, Mark! Glad you excellent Nationals writing will be continue. I was worried that while you were under-employed that some other team would snap you up… Glad you are sticking with the Nats!

  61. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:12 PM

    Now, why did THAT happen?Because I am to computers what Manny Acta is to managing perhaps?

  62. NatsJack in Florida - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:21 PM

    Amazing… over 60 posts and not one about how cheap the Lerners are, or how they really screwed up hannging on to Bowden, or how big a failure Rizzo is for not getting that #1 starter or having a back up plan for lead off hitter.How refreshing.

  63. N. Cognito - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:30 PM

    NatsJack in Florida said… "Amazing… over 60 posts and not one about how cheap the Lerners are, or how they really screwed up hannging on to Bowden, or how big a failure Rizzo is for not getting that #1 starter or having a back up plan for lead off hitter.How refreshing."JayB must have gone to Paraguay.

  64. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:30 PM

    I agree with Mississippi Snopes. Nats Insider is great! Smart people, civil conversation, a variety of opinions, and a nice job of editing out the stuff that makes other sites objectionable. Congratulations, Mark.fpcsteve

  65. Ryuga Hideki - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:37 PM

    Congratulations Mark. Very well deserved!

  66. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:37 PM

    Martis DFA'd to make room for Hairston, says Kilgore via Twitter.Congrats Mark, but dont be slackin' on your pimpin'!

  67. Positively Half St. - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:41 PM

    When I first read MLBTR, I believe it said that they released him. I suppose this makes a lot more sense. However, since he is off the 40-man, does that at all expose him to a waiver claim? I don't fear he would be claimed, but then again, I am not holding my breath for his eventual return, either.

  68. NatsJack in Florida - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:42 PM

    Great post, N. Cognito!

  69. raymitten - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:45 PM

    Congrats Mark, you are a very talented beat writer and are deserving of a real full time gig and more. I initially came to the site to check on your ability to travel to Viera in the aftermath of the blizzard and quickly became hooked on this site as the 'must check' site after and before every game, and through the off season. I echo another poster's thoughts — it would be great if you could host a weekly Nats roundtable on CSN — something like MASN's "Tom Davis Show" but completely Nats-centric.

  70. Todd Boss - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:45 PM

    Congratulations Mark!

  71. markfd - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:47 PM

    AWESOME news Mark!! Glad to see initiative and good journalism were not overlooked by Comcast! I look forward to following you on your new journey.

  72. N. Cognito - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:48 PM

    Mark -DCRTV says you'll also be doing some Caps coverage. How much of that will you be doing?

  73. Nats fan in NJ - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:52 PM

    Mark – Congratulations and the Nats community that you've supported so well this past year is very much behind you!!

  74. Knoxville Nat - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:55 PM

    Mark,Like others here let me congratulate you on landing this position with CSNwashington.com and also to Comcast as well for recognizing the fine talent that you are. I've bookmarked your new home page and pledge to faithfully read it daily as I do with natsinsider.Let me also echo the comments of erocks33, hopefully this gig will lead into a TRUE baseball show as he has suggested. And to follow up on something N.Cognito wrote….do people still watch MSNBC?

  75. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 6:57 PM

    "Why stop with CSNWashington. I hear there's an opening at MSNBC."Presume you're talking about Olbermann. Are you aware that he's been blogging baseball for some time at http://keitholbermann.mlblogs.com? This is apparently independent of MSNBC, so no reason to think it won't continue.

  76. Mark Zuckerman - Jan 24, 2011 at 7:08 PM

    N. Cognito said…Mark – DCRTV says you'll also be doing some Caps coverage. How much of that will you be doing?I will be assisting with Caps coverage for now. My former Wash Times colleague Corey Masisak recently left a freelance gig with CSN for a full-time at NHL.com, so CSN is without a full-time hockey writer at the moment. Heading down to Verizon Center tonight to cover the game against the Rangers.Rest assured, my primary responsibility at CSN is to cover the Nats.

  77. Juan-John - Jan 24, 2011 at 7:23 PM

    Felicidades/Mabruuk/Congrats Mark!You're an inspiration to those of us wannabe bloggers who hope to turn an avocation into a vocation.Besta luck with CSNW!

  78. Section 223 - Jan 24, 2011 at 7:42 PM

    Terrific news for a hard worker. Let me add my congratulations. Be bold and mighty forces will come to your aid. When you can do something you like and are good at, it's the best.I also want to add that I enjoy the conversations here because even when they seem to start to get a bit heated, they calm down on their own.I guess I won't need to send any photos your way, since you have a media gig now. Can't wait for the season.

  79. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 7:55 PM

    So pleased for your new opportunity but more pleased you won't be leaving. You do a great job and I look forward to more from you.

  80. NatsFanTom - Jan 24, 2011 at 7:57 PM

    Thank YOU Mark. You've done an outstanding job, and deserve all the opportunities that come your way. I'm relieved that we will still be reading your posts. It's grown to be a big part of the Nats fan experience for me and so many others.

  81. Timjoebob - Jan 24, 2011 at 8:03 PM

    Nice Mark. I hope they paid seven figures for it! It's worth a million bucks getting me through the winter. Thanks!

  82. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 8:15 PM

    Way to Go Mark! Win-Win for all of us.

  83. Scooter - Jan 24, 2011 at 8:17 PM

    I have one hope for the new arrangement: that you'll continue to put pointers here, on Nats Insider, when new content goes up elsewhere. I've appreciated being able to use just one bookmark and RSS feed to keep up with your work.Of course, that may not prove feasible, in which case I'll do the extra clicking with a smile on my lips, a song in my heart, and nary a grumble.Mazel tov.

  84. Mayhemnsuz - Jan 24, 2011 at 8:42 PM

    Mark, Congratulations! I, too, was ready to renew my subscription. Very glad that CSN picked up you and the Insider.Looking forward to another season of fine fine coverage here and on CSN. (And I for one am looking forward to your Caps coverage as well!)

  85. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 8:42 PM

    CongratulationsI comment rarely. The quality of your reporting has been a joy and I have gladly supported you because of it. cultRider>@<

  86. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 8:52 PM

    You are our golden glober…congrats and thanks for all your outstanding Nats coverage. JTinSC

  87. Section 215, Row A - Jan 24, 2011 at 9:00 PM

    You're sure, Mark? I was ready to write another check to get you on the plane to Viera next month.

  88. Ernie - Jan 24, 2011 at 9:10 PM

    Not much to add, but I wanted to say thanks as well. I spend far too much time every day reading your articles and the comments. You've built one of the best fan sites I've seen.Some day it would be really interesting to learn what went well with the blog, what didn't work so well, and whether this is even a sustainable type of journalism. Your "I have my own sportswriter" shirts really captured the sense of community here. There's a connection directly to you instead of to an institution that binds everyone in ways that a corporate-sponsored blog can't match. I sincerely hope that feeling endures.Thanks for feeding our shared addiction!

  89. Suicide Squeeze - Jan 24, 2011 at 9:13 PM

    Congrats, Mark! This is the best Nats blog out there and, frankly, one of the most well written blog on any subject that I follow. You are truly dedicated and making a point of keeping the Insider alive during talks with CSN speaks to that. Perhaps your success will inspire others and, for that, I am proud to have supported you and it was great meeting you and the missus at the park. As a (very small) pay back, I am in Hong Kong for a conference, so maybe that checks another spot off the click list!Congrats and cheers!

  90. David - Jan 24, 2011 at 9:16 PM

    congratulations Mark! I'm a regular reader but I barely post. I look forward to following both sites closely! I'd also like to second the notion that a TV show about Nats only would be tremendous. Good luck! I'm glad you're sticking with the Nats.

  91. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 9:24 PM

    Good deal! That's a huge load off of everyone's mind! Onward and upward to bigger and better things!

  92. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 9:30 PM

    Mark: Although never blog today i feel very happy for you. Knowing that you'll keep us gettting the wider view of the Nats organization ups and downs on an accurate and polite manner. Best to you.

  93. NatsnutMD - Jan 24, 2011 at 9:39 PM

    Mark, This is wonderful and exciting news. Nats Insider has been my first "click" for Nats news from the day it began. It will continue to be along with CSNwashington.com. It feels good that being a subscriber from day one might have contributed in a small way to this outcome. It took a lot of guts to break new ground and you should be proud of your accomplishment during tough times. Play ball!

  94. zib23 - Jan 24, 2011 at 9:52 PM

    Congratulations Mark! This was my first full year as a Nats enthusiast (finally embracing the team of my new hometown over the team I grew up pulling for) and your coverage made it so enjoyable. Look forward to reading more of your reporting and analysis in the year ahead.

  95. Richard in Bethany - Jan 24, 2011 at 10:13 PM

    I agree with everything David said.

  96. JayB - Jan 24, 2011 at 10:15 PM

    Very Cool Mark….fun list of names here….we may not agree on how best to view this team but it is fun to see all these names and Mark, you are a big reason they are still posting about the Nats….Thank You

  97. CoverageisLacking - Jan 24, 2011 at 10:43 PM

    This is awesome news, Mark, congratulations! I'm really pleased for you, and for us as fans. It's nice to see the market work once in a while and quality rewarded.

  98. Dryw - Jan 24, 2011 at 10:46 PM

    Great news on all fronts! A definite WIN!

  99. Another_Sam - Jan 24, 2011 at 10:56 PM

    I'm so happy to hear that things are working out well for you. I hope that this turns out to be perfect for you. Again, thank you for everything.

  100. Anonymous - Jan 24, 2011 at 11:23 PM

    I hope you eventually get that natsinsider.com URL enabled. My workplace has what they call social networking sites – including blogspot – blocked. LOL

  101. Princess Jazzy - Jan 25, 2011 at 1:32 AM

    Congratulations, Mark! All I can say is what took CSN so long to give you the full-time gig?Your coverage has been fantastic and thank you so much for this blog. I don't comment much but I never miss anything you put on here.Good luck and thank you again for all your hard work! The inception of this blog and your journey to ST last season was brilliant and I'm glad it all paid off for you.Looking forward to your reports on CSN and here this season.

  102. Drew8 - Jan 25, 2011 at 2:00 AM

    Mark:Congrats on the great news. Your reporting chops and good-natured posts make this a rewarding respite from the Web's mean-spirited cacophony.

  103. alm1000 - Jan 25, 2011 at 2:52 AM

    Congrats Mark.I've been reading but not posting since Strasburg went down and Dibbs was fired, but this site is the best on the Nats.Glad you have some security.

  104. SBrent - Jan 25, 2011 at 3:27 AM

    Big congrats, Mark! This seems like the best of all possible worlds! Really glad to hear you'll get a proper salary and benefits and yet we get to keep all the advantages of your great work on the Nats beat and with the NatsInsider blog community. Plus, this is a great vote of confidence from CSNWashington that the Nats are worth investing money in. So, three wins in one, I would say.

  105. NatsNut - Jan 25, 2011 at 3:32 AM

    What great news all around!! you get insurance and (hopefully) a living wage, we get great Nats coverage, and I saved the several Gs I was gonna give you to keep this going. (you can't prove I wasn't).Seriously, I'm a little late, but this just made my day. Congratulations! We are very lucky.

  106. NatBiscuit - Jan 25, 2011 at 3:37 AM

    But I was finally ready to pry a few bucks loose to pay you. Your coverage has given me quite a bit of pleasure over the past year and I feel like I owe it to you.So at the moment all I can give you is my heart felt thanks and express my admiration for your skill as a journalist, your work ethic, and your character – which shines through with every sentence you write.Thanks much for your continued good work.

  107. SilverSpring8 - Jan 25, 2011 at 3:44 AM

    I would have preferred a front-line starting pitcher … but this is pretty good news! Congrats, Mark.

  108. Section 109 - Jan 25, 2011 at 5:00 AM

    This is wonderful news, Mark. It took guts for you to try the experiment last year, and we were the beneficiaries. To say you deserve the position with CSN and the larger audience is an understatement. And I think you look very nice in the suit. You are the best.

  109. Luis - Jan 25, 2011 at 5:49 AM

    I just read every comment on this post and I'm just as happy for you, Mark, as everyone else. Congratulations and be sure that I'll continue to read almost every comment and definitely every one of your posts on either website. You're the best and I hope to meet you in Viera this spring and maybe snap a picture with you for my Facebook page (it'll rank up there with the likes of Zim and Strasburg). Thanks for your dedication.

  110. nicefellow31 - Jan 25, 2011 at 4:21 PM

    I'm going to echo what Luis said. This is a great site and it's full of real baseball/Nats fans, not like the goofs on the Washpo board. Even though we haven't seen much sucess on the field, I like how dedicated this fan base is, or at least on this site. I'm sure once we start winning the bandwagon will get full, but I'll always remember fondly the true fans who stuck with the team from the beginning.

  111. Souldrummer - Jan 25, 2011 at 4:44 PM

    Mark, just have to add my voice to the choir of praise. I hope that you'll continue to be able to maintain the independence and willingness to offer a counter voice to some of the other media sources that have a lot already invested with the team. We are so blessed to have someone so devoted to covering the team who appreciates the fan perspective and is willing to work on building the community for a young team. I hope that your realize how important your work has been. I constantly tell people from other fanbases that we are a "toddler team". We are still seeking an identity. Your blog is a core part of the identity of the Nats fanbase. So few people love our team outside of DC. We don't get the ESPN coverage outside of Bryce Harper and Stephen Strasburg. Nobody knows our prospects or takes the time to understand what we have. But how many fanbases can say that they have a professional newspaper reporter willing to take the risk that you have?I hope that Comcast has treated you well and you'll have legions of committed readers to support you in any way possible in your new endeavors.Please let us know what the best ways are to support you as you start working for CSN/Comcast.I know. I'll hold my nose and watch the Wizards!

  112. mjr - Jan 25, 2011 at 4:51 PM

    Yaaaaaaaaaay! I'd like to add my voice (keyboard clicks?) to the cacaphony raised by happy Nats fans who frequent this blog. I'm delighted that 1) you'll be finding it easier to keep body and soul together and 2) that we will still have NatsInsider to go to for our daily (sometimes hourly) Nats fix. I'm touched that you thought us important enough to make the continuation of NatsInsider a condition of your agreement with CSN. Thank you, Mark, for who you are and what you do. And thanks, too, to Mrs. Z. for hanging in there with you and us and the Nats as you struck out on your own to create something new. If I get down to ST, I'll try to find you to say "thanks" in person.

  113. The Herndon Kid - Jan 25, 2011 at 5:24 PM

    Mark:Congrats. This is well-deserved.

  114. Grant - Jan 25, 2011 at 6:34 PM

    Congratulations from an avid reader and occasional commenter. I'm looking forward to your continuing coverage in even more outlets!

  115. rmoore446 - Jan 25, 2011 at 7:06 PM

    I echo all the compliments. I have grown to treasure this community of fans as well as the excellent coverage and insight you have given us Mark. I am thankful both will continue and you will be blessed with a steady paycheck.

  116. LoveDaNats - Jan 25, 2011 at 9:12 PM

    Just got back from NYC so sorry I'm late with the congrats! I have to tell you how much I enjoy your work and all of the people who comment. I'm so happy for you. Can't wait for the new season. Show 'em how it's done.Kathy

  117. Dave - Jan 25, 2011 at 9:25 PM

    I too am late with the congrats, but…Congrats!I am very glad that NI will keep on keeping on, and that the one and only beat writer who has covered the Nats from the beginning will continue to do so.

  118. Nats4Tommy - Jan 25, 2011 at 10:11 PM

    Bully 4 You!!

  119. li-yun - Mar 6, 2011 at 3:13 PM

    it's a really great move for you!

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

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
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.
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.

Follow us on Twitter