Apr 7, 2011, 10:26 PM EST
MIAMI — The Nationals know they need to get better performances from members of their bullpen not named Sean Burnett, Drew Storen or Tyler Clippard. They just don’t know who among the rest of the group is most likely to do it.
While their top three relievers have pitched well through the season’s first week, collectively posting an 0.93 ERA entering tonight’s game against the Marlins, the Nationals’ four other bullpen members are sporting a 15.63 ERA.
Left-hander Doug Slaten and right-handers Todd Coffey, Chad Gaudin and Brian Broderick have all struggled so far in 2011, to the point where Jim Riggleman isn’t always comfortable using them in close games. Eventually, though, the manager knows someone from that group is going to have to step up when called upon.
“It’s not like they’re not a challenge for hitters,” Riggleman said. “They’ve got good arms. They’ve got good stuff.”
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2013 schedule (subject to change)...
TUE: 12:45 p.m., 4:30 p.m.
WED: 2:30 p.m.
THU: 4:30 p.m.
FRI: 12:45 p.m., 2:30 p.m.
SAT: 9:30 a.m.
*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com.
- Nate McLouth gives Nats depth & insurance
- Nats still have things to do at Winter Meetings
- Napoli, Red Sox agree on 2-year, $32M deal
- Nats 1B Adam LaRoche to join USO Holiday Tour
- Carlos Beltran, Yankees agree at $45M, 3 years
- Nationals sign outfielder McLouth to 2-year deal
- Phillies looking to trade CL Jonathan Papelbon
- Mariners sign Robinson Cano to 10-year, $240 million deal
- Point/Counterpoint: How good will Fister be?
- Sean Casey: Doug Fister is 'huge for the Nationals'