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Lannan battered by Phillies. Again.

May 6, 2011, 4:29 AM EDT

US Presswire photo
John Lannan departs without recording an out in the third inning.

PHILADELPHIA — John Lannan lives just outside of New York City, so with the Nationals only 95 miles down the road this week, he took the opportunity to head home Tuesday night to see family.

But on the way back down the New Jersey Turnpike Wednesday afternoon, he was stopped dead in his tracks by a major accident. His car sat idle for three hours before the road finally was cleared again.

Betcha given the choice between three hours stuck in traffic or three hours facing the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park, Lannan would choose the former. In the car, at least you can listen to the radio. In Philly, you have to listen to the jeers of 45,000 fans while getting your brains battered around by the opponent you simply can’t beat.

The numbers are staggering, and they say it all: After Thursday’s 7-3 loss, Lannan now owns an 0-10 record and 6.44 ERA in 13 career starts against the Phillies.

“That’s too much, for the quality of stuff that John has, for any club to do that,” manager Jim Riggleman said. “I don’t really have an explanation, other than they’re always a very good ballclub. But they just see him good or something. Most of their guys are on him good. As much as he’s going to see the Phillies in this division, we’ve just got to do better than that.”
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  1. Anonymous - May 6, 2011 at 5:04 AM

    "That's too much, for the quality of stuff that John has, for any club to do that," manager Jim Riggleman said. "I don't really have an explanation, other than they're always a very good ballclub. But they just see him good or something. Most of their guys are on him good. As much as he's going to see the Phillies in this division, we've just got to do better than that."AND exactly why Jim Riggleman should be fired: TODAY. Making excuses for a favored veteran? Winning another popularity contest? Coaching in the All Star game? Might as well be coaching a celebrity golf tournament. Most fans prefer a manager who wins games and aggravates the opposition. NOT someone everyone wants to invite to the party?This team will NEVER improve. Never get better at the major league level until they can at least hold their own but preferably dominate their division opponents. That isn't happening with Riggleman and his cronyism. His penchant for favoring veterans who are on their way to the celebrity golf circuit but don't know it yet. His penchant for playing guys who shouldn't be playing eschewing the potential and promise of younger prospects.Riggleman is losing at the major league level personified and he needs to go. TODAY!

  2. Anonymous - May 6, 2011 at 8:15 AM

    Yo, periculum, time to up the meds.

  3. Rabbit - May 6, 2011 at 10:32 AM

    Lannan should have been on the turnpike from 7-11 last night! But, it wouldn't have made any difference. The Phillies ARE that much better than us. Now that we are out of there, we can play with the rest of the mortals again.

  4. Sunderland - May 6, 2011 at 11:56 AM

    That rant didn't read like Peric to me. With LaRoche hurting, Ankiel sitting, Zimmerman DL'd, it's hard to compete. More reason Stairs should not be on this team. We don't have roster space for a one trick pony. Never before felt good about heading down to Florida for a series with the Marlins.

  5. Anonymous - May 6, 2011 at 12:13 PM

    Lannan broke Utley's wrist with that HBP in his first-ever start in Philly, knocking him out for a month. So it's easy to see why the Phillies must hate John Lannan. (If they had a MASN up there, they'd probably be running a commercial with some dorky fan saying that.) At this point the Nats would be better off if they just rejiggered their rotation every time they play Philly so Lannan doesn't pitch against them.So the "what's the deal with Lannan and Philly?" question is easily explained. The real puzzler is WTF did the Nationals ever do to Raul Ibanez to piss him off?

  6. masnstinks - May 6, 2011 at 12:16 PM

    Settle down dude – bordering on obsession there. We got swept by probably the best team in mlb, definitely the national league. We lost to Halladay by 4 runs with our line-up decimated – and it's not that strong to begin with. Didn't you hear? The world is ending on May 22cd, not today. I was thinking there was a possibility that we would be no- hit last night – please confess that you had the same thoughts. We actually eked out a little offense. For the very first time this year, a pitcher fell apart before the 5th or 6th inning. I remember years where the bullpen parade began early and often – every single game. We're mediocre but not god-awful.

  7. Mark'd - May 6, 2011 at 12:27 PM

    Anyone going to the games in Miami this weekend?

  8. UNTERP - May 6, 2011 at 12:32 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. NatsJack in Florida - May 6, 2011 at 12:33 PM

    Mark'd….. I was but have had a change in plans. I actually have two tickets behind the Nats dugout for tonite in row 9, section 155 listed on Stub Hub if interested.

  10. UNTERP.NAT - May 6, 2011 at 12:38 PM

    I believe in this team, and will go out on the limb again and say they will sweep the Marlins…

  11. UNTERP.NAT - May 6, 2011 at 12:39 PM

    This team and Lannan is better than we think. They have to believe they are better than they think. It is difficult to change a culture of losing and until they do the won't beat teams like the Phillies…UNTERP.NAT

  12. Big Cat - May 6, 2011 at 12:53 PM

    HRod….nasty. Was hitting 101 mph with a wicked breakin ball. I don't know why this guy was available for Rizzo to pick up. Maybe he has off field issues. But one thing is for sure, he is very very nasty. For all you Rizzo bashers out there, add this to Ramos in the "steal" category.

  13. UNTERP.NAT - May 6, 2011 at 12:59 PM

    Big Cat said… HRod….nasty.I don't know baseball well enough to know this, but can guys like HROD be converted to a starter?Please inform…

  14. Will - May 6, 2011 at 1:02 PM

    HRod is only a reliever, and has control issues. As a reliever, he'll only pitch at most 80 innings per season, while Willingham, despite his injuries, averages 1,000 innings played per season.He also adds something to the A's that they has been looking for for a while: an above average bat in the outfield, which, coincidentally, is just what we need now too.

  15. JD - May 6, 2011 at 1:08 PM

    BiG Cat, That's a really good point you make. If HRod shows he can command his stuff this deal for Willingham will be quite a steal in our favor. We are developing quite a stable of closers (Storen, Kimball, Hrod) as well as a great collection of catchers. As we saw during last year's trade deadline both can be excellent commodities to own.

  16. JaneB - May 6, 2011 at 1:09 PM

    Why do they pitch John when they play the Phillies? Just replace him in the order. Put him on the DL periodically. They see the stats — just Make A Change! Why not? My personal hope, as an aside, is that when people want to spew paragraphs about why this team is terrible and will "never" be good, they do it on somebody else's blog. This is the blog where you get real information and insights.

  17. UNTERP.NAT - May 6, 2011 at 1:13 PM

    JaneB said… Why do they pitch John when they play the Phillies?I was thinking the exact same thing. But you know, as an athlete to be the best you have to beat the best and it's not like any of the other pitchers have had success against them, much…

  18. JD - May 6, 2011 at 1:13 PM

    Will, Above average? .238 .322 .436 – 32 years old; below average defense and on the last year of his contract. I like Hammer but let's not make him out to be better than what he is. If you don't think closers are valuable to contenders during the stretch run how do you explain the Twins giving up Ramos for Capps?

  19. JD - May 6, 2011 at 1:17 PM

    Lannan is getting bashed here and in previous threads but last night was his 1st bad game this year; he has really pitched well so far. JaneB, I think that since the Phills are in our division and we face them 18 times a year it's best that Lannan defeats these demons rather than cower from them. I am sure he feels the same way.

  20. Will - May 6, 2011 at 1:19 PM

    Mark, if you ever get a chance to talk with Rizzo, could you ask him what the plan of action is for some of our minor leaguers? We have a couple guys who are absolutely tearing up their leagues right now.Cameron Selik leads all of Minor League Baseball (Low A to AAA) in ERA.Brad Meyers has an incalculable K:BB ratio right now, because he hasn't walked a batter yet to get with 38 Ks! 0:38- that's absurd.The other 'Brad', Peacock, is similarly destroying the Eastern League, 4:36 K:BB and a 1.16 ERA.Lombardozzi isn't doing too shabby either. A .310/.378/.490 split is pretty great for a 22 year old 2B.Special mention for Chris Manno, Craig Stammen and Cole Kimball who have all got potential to help out with the bullpen, hopefully in the near future.Finally, I can't forget about Harper, who is now hitting .357/.455/.702.How long will we wait to see some promotions? What does Meyers have to do to get out of Harrisburg? He's done nothing but impress there since 2009. It's time to cut all ties with JD Martin, Garrett Mock and Luis Atilano.Also, what's the word on Sammy Solis, AJ Cole and Oliver Perez?I appreciate the game coverage, but I'd love to hear about the exciting aspect of the Nats- the farm system.

  21. UNTERP.NAT - May 6, 2011 at 1:23 PM

    JaneB said… Why do they pitch John when they play the Phillies?Mother Abbess: Maria, these walls were not meant to shut out problems. You have to face them. You have to live the life you were born to live. The Sound of Music. LOL.

  22. Will - May 6, 2011 at 1:24 PM

    JD,You're cherry picking your data. If April is a good indication of things, then we made a colossal mistake giving $126mil to a guy barely hitting .200Willingham is good for .260/.365/.470, and has done it now for 5 straight years. Let me know the next time Morse, Ankiel, or any other OF not named Jayson does that for the Nats.

  23. TimDz - May 6, 2011 at 1:33 PM

    Another question…when are the Nats pitchers going to start tossing Ibaniez some pitches under his chin to knock him on his butt and get him off the freaking plate?

  24. UNTERP.NAT - May 6, 2011 at 1:49 PM

    TimDz said… Another question…I hate to keep chiming in, but my addiction keeps me doing this. Not only are you right, and I mean this, if I had the opportunity and the situation presented itself, if the bases were loaded or even if they weren't and Ibaniez was on the on deck circle, I would load the bases to get to Ibaniez. Then, I would throw the hardest fastball by whomever was pitching right on his knuckles. I don't mean to brush him back but intentionally hit him. I would give up the run, and then the second time he came up whatever the case, I'd do it again. Where is Bob Gibson when you need him?

  25. JD - May 6, 2011 at 1:50 PM

    Will, Your point is well taken but I think that the 2 or 3 extra wins Willingham would bring to the Nats over the year are not that relevant at this stage; I prefer to amass commodities; I think HRod could be that. I do think that the Werth contract was a colossal mistake; not because of the early struggles but because you don't give a 31 year old; likely to start declining real soon a 7 year deal; you don't see Tampa make moves like this and they are doing pretty well.

  26. John C. - May 6, 2011 at 2:14 PM

    I agree with JD – I like the Hammer and wish him well in Oakland, but let's not oversell him either. His career pattern tells us that Oakland is getting the best of Willingham right now. Over Hammer’s career he has played more in April (134 games, even though the early schedule has more off days built in) and rather less in May (113 games). He then drops off the table in June (85 games) before coming back in July (139 games, aided by his 12 game cup of coffee in 2006) before dropping back off to 115 games in August and 105 games in September. His best tOPS+ month? April (113). Next is May (112). June he falls off to 90, before rebounding to just above average in July (102) and August (104) and then finishing poorly (72 in Sept/Oct).This pattern suggests that what Oakland is getting out of Willingham now is the best that they are going to get. He’s likely to be missing time by June, marginal in July and August and missing time again (and lousy when he is there) by September. Not a guarantee, certainly – he may have a career year (or he may get hurt on the way to the ballpark before the next game). But he’s 32, so his pattern has been honed over a few years.The Nationals were going to lose him after this season anyway; the corner outfield positions are reserved for Werth and Harper over the next few seasons. Getting a 100+mph power arm with closer potential for the bullpen and a high-risk, high-reward CF prospect in Corey Brown was a fair return for the Hammer.

  27. NatsJack in Florida - May 6, 2011 at 2:42 PM

    All this bantering back and forth about who would be better in our line up than who we have, and why we don't pitch so and so a certain way, and why our manager is the worst in baseball and what the heck is our hitting coach doing/not doing is all rather tiring.The fact is, the team is who it is and that means hitting will always be an issue, with or with out Zimmerman until quality major league bats are in at least 7 of the 8 line up spots.Desmond and Espinosa will continue to struggle until the "light bulb" turns on, Werth and LaRoche are who they are will eventually return to their norm, and Pudge/Ramos should continue to be productive in their spots and Cora/Hairston will continue to be their highly inconsistent selves.Their is no quality on base guy in the entire lineup (except for Ramos) and one can not expect this team to score runs at a level required for winning baseball until this improves.I've seen Werth and Morse stare blankly at first pitch fastballs down the middle, and I've seen Desmond and Espinosa stare blankly at hanging curve balls for called strikes. Our pitchers make mistakes like that and get crushed while the other teams pitchers get called strikes. Definitely way too much guessing going on in the batters box and not enough "hitterish" reactions. It will be interesting to see if Ibanez continues to hit after facing Nats pitching or goes back to his 0'fer that he was deeply entrenched prior to this series. If he reverts, some serious soul searching will need to be done by McCatty and crew. And if he continues to hit, then we can maintain hope that Werth, LaRoche and even Morse can step up soon. 0 for 34 is a pretty dark place.

  28. CBinDC - May 6, 2011 at 2:43 PM

    This EVERY pitcher is Cy Young incarnate is getting tiresome. I thought the approach of successful teams was to figure out a plan to defeat Cy Young not stand and praise the magnificence. Is it wrong to want to knock around the starting pitching of Phillies and not ask for their autograph before you come to bat.

  29. UNTERP.NAT - May 6, 2011 at 2:59 PM

    JD said… I do think that the Werth contract was a colossal mistake; not because of the early struggles but because you don't give a 31…It's not that I disagree with you assessment. I wonder that part of the thinking, and this is not original thought, this has been said or hinted at, is that the Werth signing is part getting a good player and part acquiring honey to attract other good players later. The payroll is minimum. It's not like they have restrictions in baseball. I never could understand why people get caught up in how much players make. Would the signing be okay if it were the same amount of years and half the amount? He was considered a big time FO. No he will never be worth the contract. His numbers will never bear out what they pay him, but maybe it will help to attract others down the line…

  30. Knoxville Nat - May 6, 2011 at 3:12 PM

    Last night I got a text message from my daughter that suggested the next time the Nats hook up against Philly that Lannen should go on paternity leave as "…we are his daddy."If it wasn't so true I would laugh.

  31. Anonymous - May 6, 2011 at 3:21 PM

    as long as this team is in the lower payroll realm, there is no room for error. Rizzo gets too much credit for signing SS and BH. We 'earned" that right. He has made one good trade and has continued in JB's dumpster diving footsteps

  32. Anonymous - May 6, 2011 at 3:25 PM

    furthermore, Riggleman is the exact kind of manager this team wants. one who makes excuses and never put expectations on the team. his post game pressers are just like Manny's with all the good things we can take out of each loss

  33. Anonymous - May 6, 2011 at 3:28 PM

    Why do they pitch John when they play the Phillies? Just replace him in the order. Put him on the DL periodically. They see the stats — just Make A Change! Why not? The best argument put forth as to why John Lannan should not be pitching in the major leagues … at least as a starting pitcher. He is not even a fifth starter and a guy Rizzo should have traded before spring training ended. Putting guys like Lannan in the rotation against tough eastern division opponents is like begging for a last place finish.Agree Ramos and H-Rod look like huge steals. Hopefully, we won't be seeing Gaudin again anytime soon. And Ramos is still splitting time with Ivan Rodriguez which helps cripple what little offense the Nats can generate.You just can't expect to compete at the major league level much less teh NL East when your lineup features non-hitters like Hairston, Cora, Ankiel, and Rodriguez. Factor in the injury to LaRoche? How many hitters does that lineup truly have?Rizzo might have taken some huge steps forward with H-Rod and Ramos but he also took a huge giant leap back with this signature Riggleman bench. If there is one thing Riggleman the baseball man knows very well, its dead last place.

  34. Anonymous - May 6, 2011 at 3:34 PM

    If he reverts, some serious soul searching will need to be done by McCatty and crew. With everything there should be moderation … pitch-to-contact is all fine and good but when you can dominate hitters the way Zimmermann and Gorzelanny have the potential to do? As we saw Henry Rodriguez do with at least 3 101 mph fastballs with some low 90's breaking stuff? Not every pitcher is John Lannan or Livan Hernandez who must rely on pitch to contact.

  35. Big Cat - May 6, 2011 at 3:42 PM

    WillGood stuff on the troops down on the farm.When that old goat Manuel said we were about 3 years away, I got kinda mad. what the hell does he know I thought. Seems that old goat is a smart old goat.Yes….Solis and Cole. Can't wait to see them. Also Kimball. We have a lot of "gas" coming up. Even the slovenly one….Coffey, looked good last night. We need to put this series behind us and move on. The Phils are just better than us. And yes, someone mentioned, as I have wondered….isn't it about time Ibanyes(sp) catches one in the ribs, maybe a couple times. Lets get things heated up with the Phils. I'm tired of laying down to them.

  36. Mark'd - May 6, 2011 at 3:49 PM

    NatsJack, picked up in 154 yesterday. Darn.

  37. Sec3MySofa - May 6, 2011 at 5:16 PM

    "I don't mean to brush him back but intentionally hit him. I would give up the run, and then the second time he came up whatever the case, I'd do it again. Where is Bob Gibson when you need him?"He's on the mound, glaring at you for drilling Lou Brock. Go ahead and dig in, tough guy.Srsly, I would love to hear you explain this strategy to Jason Werth and/or Zimmerman before they step in against Halladay after you did that.

  38. natsfan1a - May 6, 2011 at 6:41 PM

    sec3, I think you dropped this: "y"Great post, though. :-)

  39. Naterialguy - May 6, 2011 at 6:42 PM

    Any body know if it would be to late to get seats to the Marlins series this weekend?

  40. natsfan1a - May 6, 2011 at 6:51 PM

    ummm…given the Marlins "crowds" as seen on tv, I'm guessing that "good seats are still available." (Not that we have a lot of room to talk.)

  41. Anonymous - May 6, 2011 at 7:22 PM

    I'm not quite sure why everyone is in love with HRod. Who cares that he can throw 100MPH when every fourth ball hits the dirt. He has serious control issues and has always had them, he walks almost as many as he strikes out.If his name was Coffey or Gaudin each of you would be screaming for him to be sent down or DFA'd.Of course, all of that is Desmond's fault so I guess I can see cutting him some slack.Don

  42. Viagra Online without prescription - Dec 15, 2011 at 5:50 PM

    when I lived in New York, John Lannan was my neighbor and he was very reserved, but he was a nice guy, always said hi to me, unfortunately I had to move out, but I still keep in touch with him

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NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
x-WASHINGTON 91 64 --
ATLANTA 76 80 15.5
NEW YORK 76 80 15.5
MIAMI 74 81 17.0
PHILADELPHIA 71 85 20.5
x-Clinched NL East title
Through Monday's games

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W L GB WCGB
x-WASHINGTON (3) 91 64 --
y-LOS ANGELES 89 68 3.0
y-ST. LOUIS 88 69 4.0
-------------------------
PITTSBURGH 85 71 --
SAN FRANCISCO 85 71 --
MILWAUKEE 80 76 5.0
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