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Game 33: Nats at Marlins

May 7, 2011, 8:01 PM EDT

File photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Nats, with new leadoff hitter Roger Bernadina, face the Marlins tonight.

The Nationals, as surmised, officially recalled Roger Bernadina from Class AAA Syracuse today, filling the roster spot that opened when Rick Ankiel was placed on the DL. And, as you had to figure, Bernadina is being thrown right into the fire as leadoff man and center fielder.

Danny Espinosa, just 5 for his last 44, gets bumped all the way down to the 8 spot, with Ian Desmond in the 2-hole behind Bernadina. Michael Morse remains out of the lineup for the fourth straight day with a sore knee.

Tom Gorzelanny, fresh off one of the best starts of his career, gets the ball for the Nationals. He's opposed by right-hander Chris Volstad, owner of a 5.33 career ERA against the Nats, starts for the Marlins.

I'm not in Florida this weekend, so enjoy the game and the always lively conversation here…

NATIONALS at MARLINS
Where: Sun Life Stadium
Gametime: 7:10 p.m.
TV: MASN
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), XM 189
Weather: Partly cloudy, 81 degrees, Wind 7 mph in from RF

STARTING LINEUPS
NATIONALS (15-17)
CF Roger Bernadina
SS Ian Desmond
RF Jayson Werth
1B Adam LaRoche

Read more »

  1. masnstinks - May 7, 2011 at 8:31 PM

    I hope Gorzelanny keeps pitching like he did the last time, our defense is tight, and our bats are hot.Go Nats! Oh, and I hope Bernie the Shark makes the organization really think before they send him back down in favor of "he who shall not be named".

  2. Anonymous - May 7, 2011 at 8:43 PM

    "He who shall not be named" – no worries – Justin Maxwell is gone!!!

  3. Sec 3, My Sofa - May 7, 2011 at 8:45 PM

    I'm not in Miami, either, but I do miss the in-game updates. Even when I am listening.

  4. Sec 3, My Sofa - May 7, 2011 at 8:57 PM

    Ralph Fiennes?

  5. Cwj - May 7, 2011 at 9:38 PM

    I have a good feeling about this game :-)

  6. Anonymous - May 7, 2011 at 10:32 PM

    Dorsal fin spotted circling Miami Gardens!< "DunDunDunDunDunDunDunDunDunDun" >Best of luck tonight boys!

  7. natsfan1a - May 7, 2011 at 10:58 PM

    I always enjoy the in-game updates and miss them, too. I tend to read them after-the-fact, and appreciate getting Mark's take on what went down and how. (Sometimes it even validates my own in-game reactions. Niiiice.)Filet-o-fish, anyone?

  8. Unkyd - May 7, 2011 at 11:00 PM

    Let's Rock.

  9. NatinBeantown - May 7, 2011 at 11:02 PM

    Given the 25 guys available, this is actually about the best lineup Rigs could make. Take advantage of a hot Ramos and Nix, get Espi back where there's less pressure for him to find his groove, and I'm convinced LaRoche is starting to break out.

  10. Candide - May 7, 2011 at 11:09 PM

    All I'm reading about Morse is "sore knee." Must be pretty sore to keep him out of the lineup four straight games – what's going on?

  11. MicheleS - May 7, 2011 at 11:30 PM

    Wow.. did the bats come alive all of a sudden, Let's hope this continues and Gorzy pitches lights out tonight

  12. NatinBeantown - May 7, 2011 at 11:30 PM

    Charlie just said on the radio that Morse ran in the OF this afternoon and is available to pinch hit tonight.

  13. dryw - May 7, 2011 at 11:42 PM

    Hitting is fun!

  14. JaneB - May 7, 2011 at 11:45 PM

    Ooooh! Welcome back Bernie! Please can we keep him?

  15. dryw - May 8, 2011 at 12:36 AM

    Scoring is fun, too!

  16. NatinBeantown - May 8, 2011 at 1:03 AM

    For the Rizzo bashers out there, as we watch Gorzy chew up the Fish. The guys we traded for him:Michael Burgess is hitting .211 as a 22 year old in A ball DaytonaAJ Morris is yet to appear in a game for DaytonaI didn't bother looking up Graham Hicks

  17. Cwj - May 8, 2011 at 1:04 AM

    Werth and LaRoche are not hitting too well (before tonight), BUT good heavens what they bring to this team is something we haven't really had before. I could throw out a bunch of cliches, but I'll use only one: these two guys are winners :)

  18. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_for_Me - May 8, 2011 at 1:09 AM

    @NatinBeantown: I couldn't agree more. This might be Rizzo's all-time best trade. These last two starts, the guy has looked like a cross between Warren Spahn and Whitey Ford. Great command, great control, one bad pitch tonight. Best fifth starter in baseball, no question. Take a bow, Mike.

  19. sjm308 - May 8, 2011 at 1:10 AM

    Looking good so far but it appears to me that Ramos is starting to fade just a bit. I also think Pudge is starting to get used to not playing every day and would not mind seeing him 3 out of 7. What a great play by Werth & LaRoche to end that inning and LaRoche has also made at least two other plays look easy. I have the broom in the closet and want to bring it out tomorrow.Go Nats!!

  20. Cwj - May 8, 2011 at 1:15 AM

    Quick, who pitches the bottom of the 8th?

  21. Cwj - May 8, 2011 at 1:16 AM

    Oops never mind I think Burnett is the only guy throwing in the bullpen.

  22. sjm308 - May 8, 2011 at 1:19 AM

    If you look at all the players Rizzo let go or traded, not one is making an impact at this time. Willingham is hovering around .240, Dunn is mired in a horrible slump, the minor leaguers we gave up for Gorzo have already been chronicled and Nyjer and the last place Brewers will soon be parting. I do think Peralta and Bautista have been good but we might have the best bullpen in the majors (or will have when HRod gets settled and Kimball & Balester join them in July.) I guess the one surprise is that Kennedy has had a good start but I was not crazy about his attitude so there is really no one the glass half-empty guys can point to as they demand Rizzo and Riggs to hang their heads.

  23. sjm308 - May 8, 2011 at 1:22 AM

    Can we play defense or what!!!Will they bring Burnett back in the 9th or did I just see Clip warming up?

  24. Wally - May 8, 2011 at 1:28 AM

    Espy has made at least 3 web gems tonight. Just phenomenal plays. Love to see 1 more run here.

  25. Cwj - May 8, 2011 at 1:47 AM

    hahaha Storen throwing 97mph. Beautiful

  26. Cwj - May 8, 2011 at 1:50 AM

    SJM308- Storen is the closer. No doubt any more.Clippard is the high leverage 7-8 inning guy.

  27. Unkyd - May 8, 2011 at 1:50 AM

    Danny "Sky" Espinosa…..

  28. Cwj - May 8, 2011 at 1:51 AM

    1-2-3 9th Nats win. GO NATS!

  29. dj in Fl - May 8, 2011 at 1:51 AM

    Is there anything better than a Nats fan going to bed with a smile of their face, dreaming of sweeping a team that has had our number.Sleep well and quick rooters, we have an early day tomorrow.

  30. Unkyd - May 8, 2011 at 1:55 AM

    Neg-Anon's gotta hate games like this… Great pitching, no errors, Desi with 2 hits and a sac from the 2-hole, good contact all night….This teams not supposed to be that good…. Got my broom out!!!

  31. Cwj - May 8, 2011 at 1:55 AM

    Yes indeed DJ in FL! Sleep well. Looking forward to tomorrow's game.Go Nats!

  32. fpcsteve - May 8, 2011 at 1:58 AM

    Good pitching, good defense, timely hitting–I like it. Winning habits. Tell the truth–who had the Nats taking two from the Fish?

  33. CBinDC - May 8, 2011 at 2:06 AM

    I did but it was in 2005Great night the best they have played in FLA in a very long time ….they never seem to well in FLA even in ST

  34. waddu eye no - May 8, 2011 at 2:19 AM

    mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

  35. Drew8 - May 8, 2011 at 2:33 AM

    Let the boys bring out the brooms on mother's day. P.S. Harper has two more knocks; he's up to .370.

  36. NatinBeantown - May 8, 2011 at 2:50 AM

    Drew8, I think the kid will be in Potomac in 2 weeks.

  37. Grandstander - May 8, 2011 at 3:16 AM

    Watched at the local watering hole tonight. First time I felt we really asserted ourselves on the fish. Even after Gorzo gave up that little 2 run bloop, it seemed like he was in total control and was just a matter of time.It was probably just a shaky Volstad, but this team had a swagger tonight. Piling on in the 9th really showed it (before Werth predictably struck out looking). Hopefully we can put the pieces together tomorrow and walk away with what no one thought was possible.

  38. Anonymous - May 8, 2011 at 3:54 AM

    Just as I surmised. The Nats led off this series with their two best starting pitchers and won: Zimmermann and Gorzelanny.Now its Livo is Livo … you never know. This probably won't work when the pennant races heat up.

  39. Manassas Nats Fan - May 8, 2011 at 4:03 AM

    ON balance I would say this might have been the best game of year from all three elements of play. Pitching outstanding fielding even better, and hitting not bad either.Let's get back to .500 tomorrow.

  40. dryw - May 8, 2011 at 10:39 AM

    As to trades, we definitely gave up great value in Matt Capps, who is still doing his thing out in Minnesota, but it was a trade we could afford to make, and that was the trade that brought us Ramos, who is obviously working out quite well for us. So I'm definitely not saying it was a bad trade, just saying it was one where the guy traded still has a lot of value.GO NATS!!!

  41. natsfan1a - May 8, 2011 at 11:13 AM

    Normally I don't care for seafood, and I didn't expect to be saying this, but that filet last night was *very* tasty. In fact, I could go really for another taste of it this afternoon. I just need to take care of a few chores. Let's see now, where *did* I put that broom? :-)

  42. natsfan1a - May 8, 2011 at 11:14 AM

    Could really go, even. Let's see now, where *did* I put that coffee?

  43. Anonymous - May 8, 2011 at 12:13 PM

    Strasburg, Zimmermann, and Gorzelanny are starting to look like a pretty good starting rotation. One more quality starter and .500 and the playoffs will finally seem achievable.Whether its Bradley Meyers, Yunesky Maya, Ross Detwiler, or Tom Milone or two in the list to make 5. Or as many suspect they will attempt to sign a top starter in free agency next year in an attempt to guarantee that kind of progress.

  44. Anonymous - May 8, 2011 at 12:26 PM

    Neg-Anon's gotta hate games like this… Great pitching, no errors, Desi with 2 hits and a sac from the 2-hole, good contact all night….Neg-Anon's?Hmmm well let's start with my prediction that they just might win 2 out of 3? Why? Zimmermann and Gorzelanny. Looking at his history after Jim Tracy burned the kid's arm out … last year he came out of the chute as the unexpected Cub's best starting pitcher. Rizzo's trade for Gorzelanny was an absolute steal. He is proving that he is top of the rotation starter.The "neg-anon" 'con'? His effectiveness might diminish after the all star break likely due to Riggleman pal Jim Tracy's poor stewardship of his pitcher. Let's hope it continues but I still can't see either Gorzelanny and Zimmermann pitching more than 150-160 innings this year. So, now we hit the true bottom of the rotation: 31+ starters Livo and Marquis followed by a dramatically regressing Lannan who no longer looks capable of being a #5 starter in any rotation. There's the difference between winning 2 out of 3 (hopefully more but with Livo you never know) after losing 3 in a row to the Phillies. Pencil Strasburg in front of Zimmermann and Gorzelanny and maybe you do sweep more than your share of series. Given a good bullpen even with a really terrible offensive lineup. The 'con'? The Nats will likely continue to be cautious with the total number of innings and their pitch counts. So, Rizzo still needs to try to find a way to sign that ace he almost acquired in the offseason. Throw in Yunesky Maya who looks like Livo when he was younger, or Bradley Meyers, or Tom Milone, or Ross Detwiler, or Craig Stammen and 85 wins suddenly seems reachable. As a "neg-anon" I must also say that they need to replace Jim Riggleman as manager if they ever want to get over .500 again.- peric

  45. sjm308 - May 8, 2011 at 12:46 PM

    Peric: glad to see a signature and you make some valid points. Do you think Marquis' two starts before his one in Philly were signs of improvement? Not trying to be sarcastic there. If he honestly starts to pitch like he has in previous years, he will give us decent starts up until the All-Star break making him a viable trading chip and giving us a chance to hover around .500 for a little while longer. I might be more excited about our bullpen prospects then the starters. HRod is already up, Kimball is lights out and I would actually entertain moving Detwiler up to replace Stanton and start him in the bullpen like the Rays did with Price a couple years ago. Not bragging and I don't need anyone searching out old posts but I believe this old fan called this sweep-to-be right after the Phillies series.Of course I have a bet with a friend (just a beer or two) that Livan's era will end up over 4.0 for the season so I am looking for a 6-4 win with our bullpen again shutting down the fish.Go Nats!!!

  46. Carl in 309 - May 8, 2011 at 12:58 PM

    Taking 2 quick ones from the Fish certainly does put one a positive frame of mind (and helps to engender a case of amnesia about the prior 3 games—-boy how I’d like to forget those losses!). And it’s nice to see the present success of Rizzo’s trades. Winning always helps.Today’s Post has a interesting piece on another “trade”—our loss of Aaron Crow (for whom our “compensation” was Drew Storen). Crow is part of this spring’s amazingly resurgent K.C. Royals (is K.C.’s success a model for us?). I’m really happy we have Storen, but will we be having “what if’s” about Crow?And I read a short that Stan Kasten sold his interest in the Nationals back in March. I wonder to whom (and for how much)?

  47. Mark'd - May 8, 2011 at 1:01 PM

    SJM, Kimball is getting the job done but walking too many batters. After the stats I have seen on Detwiler the last few weeks and that 2+ WHIP, I think he may be settling into the Detwiler we did know. Never get too impressed about great Minor League numbers or one or two good starts anyways. I see his value as a reliever.

  48. natsfan1a - May 8, 2011 at 1:06 PM

    sjm: you, unterp, and stevem, I believe, although there's still a game to be played…go NATS!!Speaking of the paper in question, there's also a great story in the Metro section about a wounded warriors softball team.

  49. Carl in 309 - May 8, 2011 at 1:23 PM

    Indeed, Natsfan1a. And George Will marks his turning 70 with references to Casey Stengel. Baseball is literally everywhere.

  50. Big Cat - May 8, 2011 at 1:26 PM

    As a Riggleman basher, I will say……..good job Sad Man…..keep it upRamirez wanted no part of Storen. First pitch 97mph, it ran 3 inches in on the black. You could see his face saying Wow. Storen just blew him away

  51. NatsJack in Florida - May 8, 2011 at 1:57 PM

    And Raul Ibanez is back to his 0'fer streak since the Nats left town. 0 for 6 against the Bravo's.

  52. Big Cat - May 8, 2011 at 2:05 PM

    Was kinda hopin the scorer would give Stairs a hit on his grounder to left. The old man needs something positive to happen.

  53. NatJack in Florida - May 8, 2011 at 2:17 PM

    Big Cat… the scorer gave Wes Helms TWO errors on that play, one for the ball going under his glove and one for interfering with Hairston.

  54. UNTERP.NAT - May 8, 2011 at 2:21 PM

    NatsJack in Florida said… And Raul Ibanez is back to his 0'fer streak since the Nats left town. 0 for 6 against the Bravo's.I'm guessing but I bet it's because the teams who have been successful against him pitch him on the knuckles inside, then away. IBanez hangs his right over the plate with his hands exposed and the Nationals let him…

  55. UNTERP.NAT - May 8, 2011 at 2:33 PM

    Interesting lineup today. No Werth…Nationals Bernadina, R, CF Desmond, I, SS Nix, L, RF LaRoche, A, 1B Morse, M, LF Hairston, J, 3B Rodriguez, I, C Espinosa, D, 2B Hernandez, L, P

  56. Mark'd - May 8, 2011 at 2:57 PM

    Morse was limping yesterday. Glad to see he is well enough to play. The Morse Ft Lauderdale crowd was out there last night. Also there were a few dozen Nats fans around the Dugout.Really well played game. Werth, Espi and Desi did great and saved the win for Gorzelanny. The walks really could have turned the game with free passes to Bonifacio.The Nats fan in the front row was going nuts when Helms impeded Hairston and glad the ump called it correctly. Didn't realize at the time that it was a fielding error also.

Archives

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

NL PLAYOFFS STANDINGS

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
x-Clinched division title
y-Clinched playoff berth
Through Monday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
TUE: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
THU: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
FRI: Marlins at Nats (DH), 1:05 p.m., 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Marlins at Nats, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Marlins at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
(End of regular season)
MON: OFF
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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