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A rally to remember

Jun 15, 2011, 5:29 AM EST

US Presswire photo
Ian Desmond and Jayson Werth celebrate the Nats’ come-from-behind win.

Trying to single out one key moment or one key player from the Nationals’ 8-6 victory over the Cardinals Tuesday night might be a fruitless exercise. There were, quite simply, more contributors and more moments of significance than can be remembered.

But if there is one plate appearance to remember from this wholly entertaining, come-from-behind win, it would have to be Laynce Nix’s bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the seventh.

A bases-loaded walk? Key to the game? You better believe it. In fouling off six pitches from St. Louis reliever Jason Motte, then finally laying off a 3-2 fastball out of the zone on the 11th pitch he saw, Nix not only drove in the go-ahead run but he left Nationals Park thumping with as much energy as this place had seen since the last time Stephen Strasburg pitched.

“Probably the biggest at-bat of the night,” teammate Jayson Werth said. “That was the difference in the game.”

Heavy praise for one of only 12 at-bats during a stirring rally that featured four singles, a double, three walks, a hit batter and a wild
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  1. Jenn Jenson - Jun 15, 2011 at 5:36 AM

    That was definitely a fun one.

  2. Drew8 - Jun 15, 2011 at 5:48 AM

    Mark: Thanks for all of your superb coverage.One note — Jason is the Nats' marquis player. Zim's their marquee player.You're our Marky playa.

  3. Grandstander - Jun 15, 2011 at 5:51 AM

    Nothing better than a late-inning rally and some free wings to boot!One thing I didn't understand was why LaRussa walked Pudge to bring in the righty to face Nix. Just didn't make any sense at the time.Really, can't be understated how rocking the park was tonight. Weekend full on a weekday, everyone into the game, there til the end. It was a glimpse into the future. Pure electricity.

  4. Anonymous - Jun 15, 2011 at 6:09 AM

    One thing I didn't understand was why LaRussa walked Pudge to bring in the righty to face Nix. Just didn't make any sense at the time.As early as last year this was the right move to make … not this year. Thank the baseball gods they decided not to pitch to him because it likely would have ended in an out. The Nats got a well-deserved break.

  5. Big Cat - Jun 15, 2011 at 10:07 AM

    Time to cash in the chips with Maya. Bring up Peacock from Harrisburg. Maya has no business starting in the bigs. He is a junk ball nibbler who nibbles down the middle too much

  6. Slidell - Jun 15, 2011 at 11:09 AM

    Bit of irony: the hardest-hit ball of the night for the Nats was Hairston's drive to the bullpen fence to start the 7th that was caught for an out.Opportunistic play by the Nats, and sloppy fielding by the Cards combined to make for what turned out to be a very enjoyable evening. This team doesn't seem to have any "quit" in it.

  7. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 15, 2011 at 11:35 AM

    I'm suprised nobody has mentioned the job that Ryan Mattheus did last night. First outing in the Bigs, he's facing a storied franchise and he does his job without going all Doug Slaten on us.

  8. Jimmy D - Jun 15, 2011 at 11:57 AM

    Had to watch this one from home, which is so much more pleasant this year than last. I say that not just because of the improved team. I say that because of the huge improvement in color commenting. FP Santangelo – what an addition that guy has been. I learn something interesting every time I watch when he is in the broadcasting booth. Not to beat the dead horse that was Dibble, but the contrast is just so great it's hard not to compare the two. Last year I'd watch games with the sound off. I'd forgotten how interesting the color guy can be. This year my ears perk up every time FP starts talking. When everyone was disappointed in the Pujols intentional walk, FP waited just a moment and then opens up that he wanted to be on record saying that it was the right move to make, then explained in very level headed terms why it was right – despite a stadium brimming with intensity. Calm and baseball smarts. And he was right. I really hope the Nats keep this guy around – and that he chooses to stay. Really makes a big difference in the experience.

  9. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - Jun 15, 2011 at 12:04 PM

    La Russa is an idiot. Walking Pudge to get to what most certainly was going to be Nix was idiotic at the time, and certainly cost them the game, in retrospect. I think this entire Cardinals organization is overrated. What to know the real truth? I think Pujols is wayyyyyyyyy overrated. He may be the best player of a very down era, but I just think the guy is a just a hint above average. Give me Morse. For one thing, Pujols always runs as if he's either pulled a leg muscle, or is about to pull one. Smart move by Riggs pitching around him in the ninth, but I think Storen would have gotten him. Still, hell of a rally. Let's go for five.GYFNG…

  10. Joe Seamhead - Jun 15, 2011 at 12:17 PM

    We went down to the game last night and it was terrific to see so many fannies in the seats, especially on a week night. You can say what you want about Yankee fans, but I've been to Yankee Stadium when the fans just flat out "will" the team to win. That type of excitement was in the air last night at Nationals Stadium. I'm glad that I don't have any speaking engagements scheduled today, as my voice is just a wee bit raspy.

  11. MeetmeinDC - Jun 15, 2011 at 12:22 PM

    It's Peacock time……….great win last night

  12. Andrew - Jun 15, 2011 at 12:41 PM

    NatsJack in Florida said… I'm suprised nobody has mentioned the job that Ryan Mattheus did last night. First outing in the Bigs, he's facing a storied franchise and he does his job without going all Doug Slaten on us. June 15, 2011 7:35 AM —————————–Very well said! Best time I have had this year at Nationals Park! Nice to see a team that never gave up!!!!

  13. Anonymous - Jun 15, 2011 at 12:44 PM

    Pujols is a top ten hitter all-time, and that may be underselling him. He's definitely not overrated. That said, you don't IBB even a top-ten hitter all time to get to a guy wOBAing over .400.

  14. Andrew - Jun 15, 2011 at 12:48 PM

    Joe Seamhead said… We went down to the game last night and it was terrific to see so many fannies in the seats, especially on a week night. You can say what you want about Yankee fans, but I've been to Yankee Stadium when the fans just flat out "will" the team to win. That type of excitement was in the air last night at Nationals Stadium. I'm glad that I don't have any speaking engagements scheduled today, as my voice is just a wee bit raspy. June 15, 2011 8:17 AM ——————————-The Cardinal faithful were into it early but it surprised me how the Nats fans didn't leave early and when the rally started in the 7th, the Nats fans really helped Laynce Nix in that bases loaded walk and the next 2 batters also.That is the homefield advantage so many teams get which I haven't seen since Strasmus June 8th last year.

  15. sjm308 - Jun 15, 2011 at 12:51 PM

    While Peacock has been lights out won't it be Gorzy coming back? What a terrible time for me to schedule the Nat King Cole play at the Kennedy Center. I did contribute to this win though. I have 9 National/Senator hats and like a previous poster who sits in a different seat after a loss, I change hats. I have had the same hat on for 4 days now and wore it proudly last night(didn't quite match the outfit but my special person is used to it by now). Its not my favorite by a long shot but we are 4-0 with the home red curly W so it stays on another day!! Hope to have it on Thursday when my son and I go and also Saturday for the O's. Wouldn't that be something?? Not that anyone cares but next up is the White hat/red bill/Blue block W from the 1926 Senators – That is a great hat!!Go Nats!!!

  16. TimDz - Jun 15, 2011 at 1:15 PM

    Was very nice to be on the good side of a rally for a change…

  17. MicheleS - Jun 15, 2011 at 1:31 PM

    NatsJack.. as always you bring the best observation. The kid did an amazing job! Maybe we can keep him even when Slaten gets back from his injury. Most of us are just basking in a great win that we haven't been able to process all the contributions last nightOn another note, for those of you that went last night. Anybody stand in line for the new food – Shake Shack, etc. Just wondering if the lines were worth the wait!

  18. Anonymous - Jun 15, 2011 at 1:49 PM

    The fries at Box Frites were horrible. Burnt. Ended up throwing them out.

  19. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 15, 2011 at 1:50 PM

    Thanks, MicheleS…. Ryan is one of my favorites as I saw him in Fall Instructional League in Florida late last September. Even told him that if he continued to throw like he was then, I looked forward to seeing him in DC and damn if it didn't happen. I'm really happy that he was a contributor last night.

  20. FOTB - Jun 15, 2011 at 1:53 PM

    Jimmy D, I'll second your kudos for FP. I really like the tidbits of what sound like real inside baseball info he offers. It's a far cry from Dibble's brainless bluster. He and Carpy seem to get along well, with neither trying to talk over the other. I love the booth this year.

  21. N. Cognito - Jun 15, 2011 at 1:53 PM

    Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me said… "La Russa is a smarmy, egotistical, idiot."FTFY

  22. Unkyd - Jun 15, 2011 at 1:59 PM

    Unkyd said…Oh! Nice inning for the Kid, no?————————–I did take a breat from gnashing my teeth I've somebody yammering about how My Boy is KILLING us, and is a defensive liability, to acknowledge Mattheus debut, NatsJack. I meant to observe that his speed was varying by 10mph or so, which I imagine makes it rough on opposing batsmen. Baseball is the only game where the Fat Lady aphorism applies: if you have an out left… IT CAN HAPPEN!!!!'

  23. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 15, 2011 at 2:08 PM

    Unkyd… I did see that… just thought others might make the comparison to Slaten.And thanks for that e-mail to Mark last week. I believe we are both following his request.

  24. Nats Outsider - Jun 15, 2011 at 2:11 PM

    Several comments have mentioned the large crowd, especially for a weekday night. It was a combination of four factors: 1) First home game after a long road trip;2) Ideal weather to watch the game;3) The return of RZ; and, most important4) The Nats "papered the house" with $2 tickets (they actually sold out of ticket for the discounted sections).I'm going to the game tonight. I'm afraid that the stands might be empty, because so many people took advantage of the $2 promotion yesterday. Can the Nats make it 5 in a row? I kind of fear for Livan.

  25. NatsNut - Jun 15, 2011 at 2:13 PM

    The best part of the night for me was Theriot's two non-errors (bottom 6th I think). The first was his slo-mo, one-hop throw to 2B. But the second one was HUH-LARIOUS. He's on his stomach, seriously only 2 feet away from second base, he practically lays there playing with the ball for, like, 10 minutes it seemed, then apparently got disgusted and finally *pushed* the ball to Schumaker. Not scooped, but pushed the ball, and probably the slowest I've seen a ball travel on the field too. OMG, I replayed it probably 5 times and died laughing every time. Poor guy.

  26. JaneB - Jun 15, 2011 at 2:14 PM

    Loved the marky punning observations, drew.I wonder if Toby was expecting Riggleman to bat Stairs at that point in the game, instead of Nix. Four weeks ago, he absolutely would have.

  27. JaneB - Jun 15, 2011 at 2:18 PM

    Tony!!! Not Toby. Darn fat fingers.

  28. Anonymous - Jun 15, 2011 at 2:18 PM

    NatsJack, re: Mattheus… The next ex-Tulsa Driller, Rox' farmhand the Nats need to get is Dexter Fowler. CF, a switch-hitter with speed and power. Solves an outfield problem for the Nats. The second best position player I saw in Tulsa after Tulowitzki. The Rox are apparently running out of patience with Fowler–off to a slow start this year (as is the team). Just a thought…

  29. Section 222 - Jun 15, 2011 at 2:28 PM

    Great wrapup Mark. It was an exciting game to watch on TV, and I'm sure it was even better in person, with or without the Shake Shack. One quibble — the last out was hardly "tapped" back to Storen. It was hit hard and he made a pretty decent play to spear it. Probably would have been a tough play up the middle for Desmond if he hadn't. Speaking of Desmond, anyone able to watch him run hard to see if the hip is still bothering him?

  30. Steve M. - Jun 15, 2011 at 2:31 PM

    Fun time last night at the ballpark. Nice seeing many of you out there. The rain at 6pm put a momentary damper on things as I had field passes for the pre-game but at least got to see the whole Nats BP on the field and talk with Mike Rizzo and in the rain Mark McGwire stayed out for a while and was very gracious.A cool side story during the game and that 3 run Cardinals rally. In the suite next to us was a man wearing a Cardinals Spring Training cap. He was almost obnoxious amongst the Nats fans in the suite. I asked him with a friendly poke what he was doing and he said it was his son's 1st game. I said "Andrew Brown?" He said yep and surprised I knew. I said "you can root for him but is it OK if the Nats win?" He said "sure" with a laugh, like it wasn't going to happen anyway (so he thought).Brown strokes his 1st hit a few minutes later which was in that Cardinals 3 run inning and scored Berkman on that great slide around Ramos. Mr. Brown and I talked some more afterwards and it was a special moment actually sharing baseball talk with this man I didn't know during one of the proudest/happiest moments in his entire life. I don't know if the Cardinals do what some teams do and focus on the family after a 1st hit so maybe we were on St. Louis TV but it was so special for this man. His son was taken out later in a double switch but still cool sharing that moment with this man I didn't know where it transcended more than just a game but father/son kind of bonds on this Father's Day week. Definitely was a hilight of the game for me as well as hanging out with great people and an inspired Nats win!!!!That's about all I have until I have a few cups of coffee!

  31. Unkyd - Jun 15, 2011 at 2:43 PM

    NJack: yep. Seems like the way to roll… That was wrong.

  32. MicheleS - Jun 15, 2011 at 2:54 PM

    And one other positive… While Theriot was getting errors.. our team defense was on point all night. RZimm, while maybe a little rusty, did just fine. I know people will comment on the Desi/Espi problem on the foiled DP, but they are young, not perfect, and in the end we won the game

  33. PAY TO PLAY - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:00 PM

    Nats Outsider said… Several comments have mentioned the large crowd, especially for a weekday night. It was a combination of four factors: 1) First home game after a long road trip;2) Ideal weather to watch the game;3) The return of RZ; and, most important4) The Nats "papered the house" with $2 tickets (they actually sold out of ticket for the discounted sections).I'm going to the game tonight. I'm afraid that the stands might be empty, because so many people took advantage of the $2 promotion yesterday. Can the Nats make it 5 in a row? I kind of fear for Livan. June 15, 2011 10:11 AM Some of that is true but I think more so Nats fans want to see good opponents like the Cardinals and it probably would have been a larger crowd if so many locals weren't also doing US Open activities.I think this weekend will be interesting going up against the US Open against the B/W series.I think the $2 tickets probably pushed it over the top for the casual fans who came and luckily stayed the whole game because I haven't felt that type of crowd since June 8th of 2010 (Strasmas). Now then, the crowd was loud for Zim's 1st atbat and then was quiet until the 7th inning and the energy level went nuts. Very enjoyable and wish they had crowds like that on a regular basis.

  34. erocks33 - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:01 PM

    Missed most of the game last night due to work, but was able to listen to the last two innings. Great come back from our guys!! Great to see that they didn't give up, unlike a LOT of posters in one of the earlier threads. Geez, there were a good number of Debbie Downers posting last night during the game. To quote Sgt. Hulka, "Lighten up, Francis."Now as far as the 25-man roster goes, Rizzo needs to DL Ankiel immediately and call up Gorzelanny. Let him start on Sunday and move Maya to the bullpen to be the long-man. Maya does well enough for 3-4 innings or less. Why not put him in the BP and let him eat up a couple of middle innings??

  35. Doc - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:02 PM

    I'll bet Theriot was his elementary school's marble champ!

  36. erocks33 - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:07 PM

    Don't short-shrift the $2 ticket as being a boon to the attendance. I believe the Nats drew nearly 22,000 on a Monday night against the Pirates last month on the $1 Monday promotion.I'd been saying for years that the Nats needed to do some sort of discounted ticket for weeknight games and I'm hoping that they continue the $2 Tuesday promotion for the rest of the season. If they keep playing good baseball in front of a larger crowd, then there's a better than average chance that more fans will want to come back on a different night.

  37. Eugene in Oregon - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:13 PM

    Changing focus from last night to the future (or at least the rest of this season), does LaRoche's surgery mean we're now in need of a back-up 1B? Stairs is listed as such on the depth chart, but I don't see that as a truly viable option. Nor do I see Pudge (or Nix, for that matter) filling that role.Or, in a worst case scenario, do we just trust that Stairs/Pudge could manage a game or two until we could get Marrero into town?

  38. Nats Outsider - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:18 PM

    erocks33 said, "I'm hoping that they continue the $2 Tuesday promotion for the rest of the season."I love that, but don't hold your breath. They have to be careful about not cannibalizing sales for full-price tickets. That's what will happen if people start to expect $2 Tuesdays. Heck, I'm one of those fans. I'm dropping $100 on a pair for tonight. I can't do that too often, and if I'd known in advance that I could have gotten into yesterday's game for $2, you can be sure that I would have taken advantage of that.I think the Nats are playing the $2 promotion pretty smartly. They do not announce it long in advance (this one was only announced last week), and naturally they limit the number of tickets at that price as well as the location. Still, anything that gets Washington to start thinking of baseball as a fun way to spend an evening is all to the good. I just hope that the crowd tonight is not down to 10,000 or 15,000, because everyone came out yesterday instead.

  39. Steve M. - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:39 PM

    erocks33 said… Now as far as the 25-man roster goes, Rizzo needs to DL Ankiel immediately and call up Gorzelanny. Let him start on Sunday and move Maya to the bullpen to be the long-man. Maya does well enough for 3-4 innings or less. Why not put him in the BP and let him eat up a couple of middle innings?? June 15, 2011 11:01 AM Very interesting point as I said flat out last week that Maya, Detwiler, Stammen, Balester, Clippard and all these other starters/former starters who can get through 3 innings but can't survive the 2nd or 3rd time through the order need to be relievers. It worked for Clippard and to a lesser extent Balester and Rizzo is yo-yo'ing Stammen and sticking with Det and Maya for now but it is inevitable unless these guys develop another pitch that they will not succeed as starters in the long-term. If arm stamina is their issue, then they have to be a reliever.I went back to watch that dreadful 3 run Cardinals inning and much to my surprise as Berkman steps to the plate, FP Santangelo makes that same observation on Maya about being a reliever.Now clearly if the Nats get that double play on Berkman, Maya is out of the inning 3-1 with no runs given up. I give him credit on inducing the double play ball that was botched. Berkman isn't super fast but Desi/Espy were not on the same page there. It still doesn't change what Maya is at this point in time. Also noticed his 12 to 6 curve ball wasn't dropping like it did during his last start. Was that the pitch Pujols hit out as it looked like it hung? I didn't see the radar reading on it.Three reasons I see for these struggling starters is 1) they don't have enough pitches in their arsenal to show the hitters 2nd time around something different and lack an "out" pitch 2) some times they are getting arm fatigue and try to keep the velocity and lose movement on their pitches 3) they start losing their release point and miss their spotsWhatever it is with these fringe starters, I believe most of it starts at the lower depths of the Minors that they aren't developing enough pitches in their arsenal. Case and point was with Jordan Zimmermann early in the season. He didn't have his breaking pitches working well and was trying to go fastball too much and got hit hard. As he has gotten his touch on the breaking pitches slider/curveball, he is dominating.

  40. Dishrag - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:42 PM

    LaRussa gave Riggleman an early father's day present. And that's after Riggleman gave LaRussa a present earlier (leaving Maya in too long). I don't know what Riggleman was thinking … maybe he wanted to avoid putting Matheus in a pressure situation his first time out. Anyway, no disrespect to the players but LaRussa bungled that inning and Riggleman and the Nats took advantage. Rodriguez's stats, no matter how you look at it this year, are just awful in these situations. With either tied or within one run he is batting .190ish and and sluggling .180ish. But instead of removing the lefty for Motte in the middle of the at bat or at least letting the lefty try to finish the at bat he intentionally walks Rodriguez. And then getting RH Motte to pitch to the obvious PH Laynce Nix he really made a mistake. Nix is sooo bad against LH this year. He's batting .133/.235/.267. Nix's RH split is .314/.347/.547. In contrast had he just left the LH in, Hariston's splits for a LHP is .192/.300/.288. It's early in the season so the stats are light but geeze, LaRussa out thought a win tonight. Not that I'm complaining and not that LaRussa is an idiot (LaRussa is a top notch manager, he's really that good – many times he works a win in these situations) but that loss is on the manager and the ump forgetting what an inside strike looked like.

  41. Bowdenball - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:45 PM

    They couldn't have gotten luckier on the game they picked for the $2 promotion. Hopefully some of those folks will come back more often and we can have more nights in the future that resemble last night. What a great crowd.I think attendance will be OK tonight- take a step outside and you'll see why. I predict that tomorrow is the night that attendance will dip drastically. The forecast is iffy, the US Open is in town, and a lot of people will have gone yesterday or today or have tickets for the weekend series with the Orioles.

  42. A DC Wonk - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:46 PM

    Nats Outsider said…Several comments have mentioned the large crowd, especially for a weekday night. It was a combination of four factors: 1) First home game after a long road trip;I think a key is that it was the first home game after a successful road trip.(Yes — SD rots — but let's also remember that when the Nats went out west, Arizona was the hottest team in baseball, and SF was in first place in the West).

  43. Anonymous - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:46 PM

    "I just hope that the crowd tonight is not down to 10,000 or 15,000, because everyone came out yesterday instead."It won't be. Wednesdays always draw better than Mondays or Tuesdays (which is why they do the $1 and $2 promotions on Mon-Tue) and the Cards always have a lot of their fans here. You just don't notice them like you do Phillies fans because unlike Phillies fans the Cards fans are nice. So tonight's crowd may not be as high as last night's 27,000, but it will definitely be over 20,000.

  44. Steve M. - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:46 PM

    Eugene in Oregon said… Changing focus from last night to the future (or at least the rest of this season), does LaRoche's surgery mean we're now in need of a back-up 1B? Stairs is listed as such on the depth chart, but I don't see that as a truly viable option. Nor do I see Pudge (or Nix, for that matter) filling that role.Or, in a worst case scenario, do we just trust that Stairs/Pudge could manage a game or two until we could get Marrero into town? June 15, 2011 11:13 AM Last night was the perfect example of why you need Chris Marrero here. Michael Morse should have been in LF last night and Hairston (gasp) in CF for an all right-handed outfield and Marrero at 1st base.Instead you have Ankiel starting in CF which isn't working against the LH starter.

  45. Steve M. - Jun 15, 2011 at 3:58 PM

    Dishrag said… LaRussa gave Riggleman an early father's day present. And that's after Riggleman gave LaRussa a present earlier (leaving Maya in too long). I don't know what Riggleman was thinking … maybe he wanted to avoid putting Matheus in a pressure situation his first time out. Anyway, no disrespect to the players but LaRussa bungled that inning and Riggleman and the Nats took advantage. Rodriguez's stats, no matter how you look at it this year, are just awful in these situations.Riggleman didn't leave Maya in too long IMO. Mattheus wasn't ready it appears and you are correct on the pressure of the situation. Still, give Maya credit for inducing that Berkman grounder that should have been a DP.On LaRussa, I agree with you on Pudge but in Tony's mind, it was a hitter's count after the wild pitch (I think 2-1 count) and it was one of those in hindsight didn't work. As a Nats fan, I was thrilled they walked Pudge because he hasn't been hitting well of late. Glad this one worked in favor of the Nats.The other thing the Nats have to exploit this series is Lance Berkman in LF. He has no range and you have to get him to make some defensive blunders. He is a huge liability out there ready to being taken advantage of.

  46. SCNatsFan - Jun 15, 2011 at 4:04 PM

    You know what? For once I wasn't throwing the remote and yelling so I'm happy. After Zim got his hit I thought ok, maybe we'll make it close… was fun to watch as we clawed back, only yelling when Pudge didn't make it home from 2nd with 2 out. Didn't turn the game on until Maya was getting yanked so a truly wonderful Nats evening for me.

  47. Anonymous - Jun 15, 2011 at 4:08 PM

    I'm suprised nobody has mentioned the job that Ryan Mattheus did last night. First outing in the Bigs, he's facing a storied franchise and he does his job without going all Doug Slaten on us.I DID. ON many occasions … yawn … and as I recall I predicted they would call on Mattheus before Balester. But then, you don't read me although I'M THE ONE THAT CLUES YOU IN!This guy should make all of you forget about the 1.5 seasons Clippard has had. If Mattheus continues that could lead to a Clippard trade. In spite of how things went last night … they are still in last place. When you are in last place you look for ways to improve your team. And from any perspective you have Rizzo is looking for ways to improve the organization bottom and top as rapidly as possible to offset the 2005-2009 JimBo years.

  48. natsfan1a - Jun 15, 2011 at 4:12 PM

    SC, I wasn't throwing the remote either but evidently I did root rather actively during the comeback. I was watching tv in the basement and my husband was two levels up (he gave up at 6-2, if memory serves), but he later said he could hear me "hooting and hollering." Oops. :-)

  49. Steve M. - Jun 15, 2011 at 4:26 PM

    Anonymous said… I DID. ON many occasions … yawn … and as I recall I predicted they would call on Mattheus before Balester. But then, you don't read me although I'M THE ONE THAT CLUES YOU IN!This guy should make all of you forget about the 1.5 seasons Clippard has had. If Mattheus continues that could lead to a Clippard trade. June 15, 2011 12:08 PM A guy makes his 1st appearance and you are all ready to have him replace Clippard and then to say if Mattheus continues it could lead to a Clippard trade?WTF? Have you noticed this team only has 1 1/2 reliable set up men outside of Clippard and the one or 2 outs Coffey can typically get you?Why do people like you write garbage like this? The team needs another set-up man to take care of the 7th innings and the team needs a lefty stopper as it appears Burnett has dropped to the 6th man in the bullpen.

  50. Bowdenball - Jun 15, 2011 at 4:54 PM

    Anonymous (12:08) said I DID. ON many occasions … yawn … and as I recall I predicted they would call on Mattheus before Balester. But then, you don't read me although I'M THE ONE THAT CLUES YOU IN!It would be easier to figure out when you're posting if you didn't do so anonymously. Just sayin'

  51. The Great Unwashed - Jun 15, 2011 at 5:34 PM

    Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me said…La Russa is an idiot. Walking Pudge to get to what most certainly was going to be Nix was idiotic at the time, and certainly cost them the game, in retrospect. I think this entire Cardinals organization is overrated. What to know the real truth? I think Pujols is wayyyyyyyyy overrated. He may be the best player of a very down era, but I just think the guy is a just a hint above average. Give me Morse. For one thing, Pujols always runs as if he's either pulled a leg muscle, or is about to pull one. Smart move by Riggs pitching around him in the ninth, but I think Storen would have gotten him. Still, hell of a rally. Let's go for five.________________________________________________Sunshine,I know you’re excited but you couldn’t be more wayyyyyyyyy off about La Russa and Pujols.1) Last time I checked, La Russa has won a World Series in both leagues and he’s been managing for about 30 years so I think it’s safe to say that he’s pretty good at what he does.2) When you call La Russa an idiot, you’re also calling Riggleman the same because Riggs coached under La Russa and has said that he owes much of what he’s learned as a manager to La Russa. Where do you think Riggleman got the idea of putting the pitcher 8th in the order? La Russa probably didn’t invent the idea, but he’s well known for using it.3) They put a graphic on the screen last night that Pujols has hit something obscene like 24 HR off Nats pitching since 2005. And that number of home runs is based on playing the Nats just six or seven times a year. I might have that HR number wrong, but there’s no doubt that Pujols has feasted on Washington pitching. You can make an argument that Pujols is on the down side of his career, and the Cardinals would be foolish to give him an A-Rod money/length contract. That’s a valid point, but he’s certainly not overrated, nor is he a “hint above average.”4) Walking Pudge was a gamble but keep in mind that he’s been in the game for awhile, and even though he’s not hitting well this year, he’s been clutch many times over his career (even a few times this year). When Nix was on the Reds, he was a utility player in the Cardinals’ division so La Russa knew who he was. So he took a gamble that Nix would be an easier out than Pudge. Yes, it was a gamble, but how many times have we seen Nix strike out in that spot? And I say that while still admiring what Nix has done for the Nats this year.5) Storen had a runner on with Pujols coming up. Did you not hear of the Cubs-Cardinals series last week where the Cardinals took two out of three in the series because Pujols hit the game winning HR off the Cubs’ closer in two of the games? Surely Riggleman was taking that into account. Storen’s been great this year, but he’s still young and can sometimes give up the big hit. After all the Nats had done to come back in this game, Riggleman was playing the odds and this time he was right. Walking Pujols was absolutely the right thing to do. I’m not a Riggleman defender, but when he does something right I’ll give him credit for it.6) Finally, Morse has been great this year, no doubt. But, get real. He just landed a starting job that he wouldn’t have had if LaRoche hadn’t gone down. Pujols has hit 420+ HR over 10 years. If you’re comparing the two, I’ll take Pujols (but I hope the Nats don’t consider signing him as a free agent).

  52. Big Cat - Jun 15, 2011 at 5:37 PM

    Agree with Steve. This Mattheus pitched 1 scoreless inning. His fastball was 91-94. His breaking stuff appeared average at best. Lets wait a while before trading Clippard. JeezBoy its good to see Zim over at third again. And Jason Werth….HUGE basehit to right!

  53. Big Cat - Jun 15, 2011 at 5:47 PM

    I am never a fan of putting the tying run on and bringing the winning run to the plate….but just this once, I agree with Sad Man. Puhols is a freak and he has just been wearin our butts out. Good job Riggs. How about HRod freezing Puhols with his yacker. See ya Albert!

  54. JaneB - Jun 15, 2011 at 7:27 PM

    SteveM, what a great story about a dad watching his boy get his first hit in the big leagues. Made me all teary, truth be told. Thanks dor sharing it!

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