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Game 158: Braves at Nats

Sep 25, 2011, 4:25 PM EDT

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Ross Detwiler faces the Braves today in the Nationals' 2011 home finale.

And so we have reached the final home game of the season, one last chance for fans to see their team in person and one last chance for the players to thank their supporters. As they've done every year since arriving in town, the Nationals will give away the jerseys off their backs following today's game, and there will be other special moments and surprises.

At the same time, this game means everything to the Braves, who are clinging to a two-game lead over the Cardinals for the NL wild-card. So Davey Johnson still has to treat this as a competitive exercise, and thus he's got all regulars in the lineup against Atlanta left-hander Mike Minor.

Ross Detwiler is on the mound for the Nats, looking to finish his season on a strong note. The young lefty has definitely turned some heads over the last six weeks or so, perhaps to the point where he'll enter 2012 as a favorite to win a rotation spot (he'll be out of minor-league options).

Of course, there will be plenty of time to discuss that and more all winter. For today, just enjoy the home finale. Plenty of updates to come…

BRAVES at NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 1:35 p.m.
TV: MASN
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), XM 184
Weather: Cloudy, 75 degrees, Wind 6 mph in from RF

STARTING LINEUPS
NATIONALS (77-80)
SS Ian Desmond
CF Jayson Werth
3B Ryan Zimmerman
LF Michael Morse

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  1. BinM - Sep 25, 2011 at 4:36 PM

    Of mild interest is Ross starting over McCann behind the plate for the Braves; Is he a personal choice for Minor?

  2. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 4:39 PM

    Sorry Mark, mark my words, both you and Ben are likely wrong on this one: John Lannan will not be back. If Detwiler and Milone both pitch well again he's a trade chip. There won't be any "steady John Lannan" in next year's rotation. Most especially if they acquire CJ Wilson. You're both in the right town you too often sound like politically correct politicians than baseball beat reporters or analysts. It can get wearying …

  3. JayB - Sep 25, 2011 at 4:44 PM

    He is out of options because Jimbo was such a poor GM that he burned one needlessly in 2007 to get him 1 inning in all of Sept…..God I am glad that guy is gone and for the last time…..ever….Mark Lerner is responsible for the lost 3 years of development of this team because he loved having his ass kissed by old leather pants…I still think the Nats will have a better record than the Indians and Acta…..made that prediction back in June when everyone loved Acta…..he will be back at 3B Coaching before too long.I said in March that this team had to get to .500 and that they would if they would just fire Riggs……we shall see……

  4. JayB - Sep 25, 2011 at 4:50 PM

    2008 opps

  5. JayB - Sep 25, 2011 at 4:52 PM

    I agree that Lannan will be traded….he will costs way too much for the value….team will not get to the playoffs with John Lannan in the rotation….good stats, great person…..defense just falls asleep behind him….hate being in the park for his starts.

  6. JayB - Sep 25, 2011 at 4:56 PM

    one last one….have been so happy with this team post Riggs that I have been reading but not posting…kind of telling that I was able to get the a single seat right on the field in a row of 2 this year for my ticket……I have been trying to get that seat for several years…always turned down because I was not a full 81 game planner….now I can get it…….interesting…they said renewals are off yet again….hopefully for the last time!

  7. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 4:59 PM

    Who invited that loser JayB in to harsh our closing day buzz?

  8. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:00 PM

    @BinM,McCann bats left. Detwiler throws left. Looks like the Braves are playing the percentages to me.

  9. September Dreams of April - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:02 PM

    " I said in March that this team had to get to .500 and that they would if they would just fire Riggs."_________________________________________Interesting. Just to interject a fact or two, the Nats were *above* .500 when Riggs was still the manager, and the have never been able to get back there since he left. And that's despite getting Zimmerman back and having Werth play halfway decently since the ASB.

  10. JayB - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:04 PM

    True about when Riggs pulled his power play that went wrong…..does anyone think this team would be better with Riggs here….I do not.

  11. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:04 PM

    @JayB,Yeah, its nice not to be a frustrated fan. Giggleman's Isle is like part of the scripting of Moneyball. Old stubborn baseball men who can't change their ways and would play, say, Pudge Rodriguez every night to the detriment of both Ramos and Flores and perhaps eventually even Derrick Norris. Guys who like players with the "good baseball face" of a veteran and not whether they can play winning baseball for old DC? Arrghhhhhh … and the damned guy is from DC he's FROM HERE he should have known better!? Johnson acts more like the Local's manager and he was a Bird.

  12. BinM - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:04 PM

    @peric (anon 12:39) – Lannan will be back for 2012 unless he's part of a BIG trade for someone like Kemp. Get used to it. @JayB – Clearly you're referencing Detwiler in your comments regarding being out of options, and I'd agree that that was a wasted recall by Bowden. As to the .500 record as a critical marker, would another 10 game gain in W-L (79-82) suffice as a successful season?

  13. Anonymous8 - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:06 PM

    JayB was correct on JimBo and MarkL. JimBo was great at one thing— butt-kissing! JayB, don't worry about the Indians, they play in an easy division. The East divisions are the toughest in baseball.

  14. Acta/Riggleman - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:06 PM

    JayB…..you have now removed all doubt in my mind and confirmed that you are truly a total jerk.

  15. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:09 PM

    Interesting. Just to interject a fact or two, the Nats were *above* .500 when Riggs was still the manager, That was before the ALL STAR break. Don't let facts get in the way of truth September Dreams … that is your way? Riggleman has a .443 winning percentage … that's as bad as it gets going back to 1900. Why? His teams usually completely fold in the 2nd halfBecause he would have alternated Pudge Rodriguez and Ramos right to the end. He would have started Pudge as often as he could. There would be no Detwiler, no Peacock, no Milone, no Marerro, no Lombardozzi …

  16. Nats Outsider - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:10 PM

    I still think Peacock may be the one to go in a trade. Johnson's statement, which I quoted yesterday in another thread, was that he did not plan to use Peacock out of the bullpen in the remaining games, because he had already impressed people all around baseball. Why would it be so important to have impressed people on other teams, unless the Nats will be shopping Peacock to some of those teams?

  17. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:12 PM

    @peric (anon 12:39) – Lannan will be back for 2012 unless he's part of a BIG trade for someone like Kemp. Get used to it. And if they go out and sign CJ Wilson? Let's count the left-handed starters @BinM? Detwiler, Milone, Wilson, possibly Gorzelanny he has earned another shot to compete for it in the spring, and then Lannan? And you'll likely be fuming when he's not there. You'll just have to get used to it and with Anthony Rendon and perhaps Matt Purke in the AFL as well.

  18. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:13 PM

    Oh yeah, Purke is left-handed isn't he?

  19. MicheleS - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:32 PM

    Boys you need to play nice today! Most of us are @ the game today. So we won't be posting as much today.

  20. BinM - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:48 PM

    @peric (anon 1:12): As I've said, Lannan will be a part of the 2012 Washington staff unless he is part of a Big Trade in the off-season. I don't discount the other LHSP who are either currently on the roster (Milone, Detwiler, Purke), or other pitchers on the horizon (Solis, Ray, Turnbull, Hansen, et al) displacing him at some point in the future, just not right now.

  21. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:50 PM

    and those of us who aren't at the game already know who's tiresome, and it ain't Mark.

  22. MicheleS - Sep 25, 2011 at 5:56 PM

    Sec3 represent for us today! Jane, Navy, 1A, Steddy Eddie and Nats Lady are here!

  23. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 6:06 PM

    hmmm. Maybe I should fall by down there. Detwiler is off to a good start

  24. HabsProf - Sep 25, 2011 at 6:15 PM

    I've always thought the biggest problem with Detwiler was that he never got an extended tryout in the rotation. Between injuries and time in the rotation he never quite got a chance to settle in and adjust to major league hitters. I'm cheering for the guy.

  25. Scott from Burke - Sep 25, 2011 at 6:21 PM

    Heres a trade i like for both teams: Nats send Morse to Dodgers (who would play him at first base) for Chad Billingsley (your #3 starter) and a young outfielder (perhaps Sands)…Morse is a first baseman, not a left fielder..and Billingsley is an effective pitcher sometimes who can hit

  26. Drew8 - Sep 25, 2011 at 6:23 PM

    C'mon Wilson, frame the pitch!His glancing, snap catches have cost Ross at least four borderline calls.

  27. Drew8 - Sep 25, 2011 at 6:32 PM

    Wow.Sacks jammed, no outs — Bourn, Prado, Chipper.Today, my son, you are a man.

  28. NatinBeantown - Sep 25, 2011 at 6:32 PM

    Scott, Not counting contract status, that's a reasonable trade to me. I would take it. There are an awful lot of unhatched chickens in our system we're ready to count, but you can't have enough pitching. You can always buy a 1b power hitter.

  29. Drew8 - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:01 PM

    (I liked how Wilson framed THAT pitch.)

  30. Just wonderin' - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:02 PM

    Doesn't that tie a Washington franchise (i.e., counting the Senators) home run record for catchers? Earl Battey also had 15 one year — anyone else have more as a catcher?

  31. Gonat - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:03 PM

    The RAM MOOSE with a laser HR that finally breaks the 0-0 tie.Now maybe the BULL MOOSE can do something special!Was BULL MOOSE told not to interfere with the President's race? Thomas Jefferson sent around 3rd base just in case?

  32. Gonat - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:07 PM

    2:47 p.m. — OK, here we go: Middle of the fourth. Presidents Race time. Will Jayson "Bull Moose" Werth get involved again? Let's see…2:50 p.m. — Well, that was lame. Werth jogged straight to the dugout and didn't participate at all. George, Abe and Teddy came running out in the usual path, but Tom went the other way (around left field). Turns out that was the "correct" path for the day. Not that it mattered, because "That Cat" tackled George, Abe and Teddy as Tom crossed the other finish line to end the season tied with Abe for the title with 30 wins apiece. L-A-M-E.____________________________________Mark – What do you think? Bull Moose was told not to interfere?

  33. Gonat - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:08 PM

    In the 2nd inning Gomes forgot their were 2 outs and headed back to 2nd on Detwiler's line drive caught by the Shortstop.Now with 2 outs in the 5th he catches the ball in Rightfield and throws a bullet to 3rd.

  34. Drew8 - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:08 PM

    Dance across those hot coals, Ross!(And Jonny, try the decaf.)

  35. BinM - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:10 PM

    With a swing at an inside, off-speed pitch, Ramoose equals the record for HR's by a Rookie catcher (15). Well played! @Scott from Burke / NatinBeantown: The problem is that the LAD still have Ethier at 1B; Morse doesn't really work for them, imo.

  36. slidell - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:10 PM

    Regarding the Presidents "race"; suspect that Jayson and Ankiel were told in no uncertain terms to stay out of other people's business. Also, somebody could have been hurt in all that chaotic scuffling around.They should have let Teddy win today and then announce that they were done with the business.

  37. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:13 PM

    Just as well there were 3 outs–the throw was way up the line to the outfield side.

  38. Gonat - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:15 PM

    Too funny, Bob Carpenter just lost track of outs. Thought Zim grounded out for the last out. LOL

  39. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:19 PM

    Keep it together, there's only three more after this one…Don't show up a game after that third one, fellas.

  40. Gonat - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:20 PM

    For those following the 3rd place happenings, the Mets are losing 9-0 against Philly in the 4th inning.

  41. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:41 PM

    Detwiler, 6 IP shutout against a team struggling to get the WC. Fending off the Cardinals. BY GEORGE I think he's got it! Still think Lannan will be back BinM, and the crazy, really crazy notion that Lannan would be ahead of Detwiler in ANY pre-2012 rotation configuration? I think he's #3 behind Stras and Zimmnn. Lannan is at the bottom dude.

  42. Drew8 - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:41 PM

    R.F.D. exits with a season ERA of 3.00!Way to go, thin man. Now go have a cheeseburger.Voldemort cometh. I goeth.

  43. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:45 PM

    2012 pre-season rotation.1. Strasburg2. Zimmermann3. Detwiler.4. Wang.5. CJ Wilson.6. Brad Peacock.7. Tommy Milone.8. Tom Gorzelanny.Dark Horse if he is Stras-like in his rise from the minors: Matt Purke another lefty.5 lefties, 4 righties.John Lannan traded perhaps to the Yankees for prospects.

  44. slidell - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:45 PM

    Fast Henry really whipping it in there. 100, 101, 100.

  45. Gonat - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:47 PM

    As a non-believer in HenRod, that was UNREAL. Best inning of the year. WOW

  46. BinM - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:49 PM

    Here's hoping for good Henry today.

  47. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:50 PM

    He definitely gets your heart rate up , doesn't he? I am guessing the batters have to be on their toes also.

  48. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:56 PM

    When they bring Henry Rodriquez back next year and people start the inevitable howling, remember this inning. That's what they know he can do, and hope he can repeat.

  49. Drew8 - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:57 PM

    Atlanta, we have some lovely partingGORSE HACKAGE!!!

  50. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:58 PM

    And MORSE NOT Kemp will be in the outfield for the Nats BinM. MIchael "Beast Mode" Morse dude. Period. End of Story. Deal with it.

  51. Eugene in Oregon - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:58 PM

    I'm one of those who's comfortable with (read: in favor of) letting Livo go at the end of the season, but I love the fact that he's jumping up-and-down excited after Morse's HR.

  52. MicheleS - Sep 25, 2011 at 7:58 PM

    BEAST

  53. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:00 PM

    If by some miracle they sweep the Marlins and finish over .500 … and someone again brings up the sad man Jim Giggleman and how he had the team over .500 before the All Star break … they ought to be tarred, feathered and ridden out of town.

  54. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:01 PM

    I still believe Livo has a shot at a bullpen job. Unlike Miss Iowa this guy really does have an effective rubber arm and some real guile. But in the starting rotation? No way, that's last place team thinking.

  55. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:03 PM

    All your base are belong to Gorse!

  56. As much relevance as continuing to harp about Riggelman - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:05 PM

    If by some miracle the Rebels sweep the Yankees and finish over .500…and someone again brings up the sad man Robert E. Lee and he how had the army over .500 before Gettysburg…they ought to be tarred, feathered and ridden out of town.

  57. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:06 PM

    Bless his arm, nobody except maybe Livo's agent is seriously considering him for the rotation next year, absent several really unfortunate injuries. Too bad he's not a reliever, but he's really not. He's my favorite Nat of all time. I'll miss him.

  58. rogieshan - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:07 PM

    I feel Lannan has already reached his ceiling and, therefore, his stock is fixed in terms of trade value. Given all the prized, young arms we now have in our system, I expect teams with a big bat to offer would look past Lannan in favor of those who have a bigger a upside. I'm sure Rizzo would rather move Lannan (a Bowden draftee) than one of his own bonus babies.

  59. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:08 PM

    I don't think there are any high schools named after Riggleman.

  60. Nats Outsider - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:10 PM

    Sec 3 said, "All your base are belong to Gorse!"LOL!! I nominate this for the comment of the year.

  61. Chien-Ming Wang - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:13 PM

    Nats Outsider said…Sec 3 said, "All your base are belong to Gorse!"LOL!! I nominate this for the comment of the year.———————–I suspect that may be a bad Google translate from the Mandarin…

  62. swang - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:15 PM

    they should shut down Storen after this game… He's being used too much.

  63. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:16 PM

    Good job by the fans letting Marerro have that foul popup by Uggla, even though it was too far in to get–they got out of his way. Well done.OMG! Zim!

  64. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:17 PM

    nobody reacts to a bad hop better than Zim.

  65. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:18 PM

    Have I mentioned how much I like beating Atlanta?

  66. Eugene in Oregon - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:20 PM

    Over to you, Cardinals…

  67. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:20 PM

    And the Cardinals have tied the Cubs 2-2 in the 7th.

  68. Nats Outsider - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:22 PM

    "Have I mentioned how much I like beating Atlanta?"I'm sure you don't like it as much as beating the Marlins. ;-)

  69. Hotpepr - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:23 PM

    Charlie and Dave have WAY outdone themselves of this one … can someone please explain how we are going to live without them until march???? I've never before been moved to comment but I just love those guys.

  70. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:27 PM

    I'm thrilled to see them beat the Marlins (on the rare occasions when they do), but I've had it in for the Braves since the early 80s. Now, should they sweeeeep the Marlins, that would be over-the-top cool.

  71. Drew8 - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:29 PM

    Drew Storen goes Charley Taylor (No. 42)!Now it's on to Florida for Larry Brown, Riggins and, um, Mike Sellers?GYFNG!!!

  72. Nats Outsider - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:31 PM

    Mark Z: "the Nats just went 6-1 against the Phillies and Braves down the stretch."The Nats will finish the 2012 season with 3 games at home against the Phillies. (October — not a typo — 1, 2, and 3.) Just sayin'

  73. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:40 PM

    Furcal homers to give the Cards a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the 8th. Top of 9 now.

  74. Sec 3, My Sofa - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:46 PM

    And that's a final–Cards get to 1 back with 3 to play, and the Nats have pushed to Braves to the edge of See Ya.

  75. MicheleS - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:54 PM

    Sec3 …. bringing it today!!

  76. Frediemac - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:56 PM

    Drew8 said… Atlanta, we have some lovely partingGORSE HACKAGE!!! ——————————Post of the YEAR!!!

  77. Frediemac - Sep 25, 2011 at 8:59 PM

    Sec 3, My Sofa said… I'm thrilled to see them beat the Marlins (on the rare occasions when they do), but I've had it in for the Braves since the early 80s. Now, should they sweeeeep the Marlins, that would be over-the-top cool. ——————————–If this happens I'm sure come Wednesday night you could find me with tears in my eyes..pure happiness

  78. Drew8 - Sep 25, 2011 at 9:23 PM

    MLBTR picks up this tweet from Bill Ladson:#Nats GM Mike Rizzo said he is looking for an impact starting pitcher and another bat this offseason.Sure hope he emphasizes an outfield bat.As for the starters, seems to me there's already a lot of impact in the mid-90s guys Detwiler and Peacock. And given that Purke has a major league deal, you're looking at a huge logjam if he acquires a big-time arm.Course, we'd make room for CC, or C.J.Given Upton's contract status, Tampa's six starters and the Nats' surpluses at first base, middle infield, catcher and minor league arms, my Spidey sense still tells me we'll see some sort of deal with Tampa.

  79. Joe S. - Sep 25, 2011 at 9:32 PM

    We Shermanized them!2013=1924!!!

  80. Drew8 - Sep 25, 2011 at 9:35 PM

    P.S. Desmond is from Sarasota and Marrero is from Miami.Upton, of course, is from Virginia.Just sayin…

  81. Wally - Sep 25, 2011 at 10:16 PM

    NatsJack- any more updates from instructs?

  82. Anonymous - Sep 25, 2011 at 10:26 PM

    Thoughts from the game: 1. Great crowd, great electricity, especially on the curtain call for Morse. Someone needs to tell Marerro to stand out of the box while fans are calling for a curtain call. He almost jumped in too quickly to spoil it. 2. Love to see the Braves fans quiet, but they are nowhere near as obnoxious at Phillies fans. 3. How can the standings for the Presidents race be 30-30-23-0 as posted when we have only played 80 home games (LA was rained out)? 4. Can Gomes count? When he was on second with two outs he went back to the bag to tag on a line drive. Later he gunned a throw to third after catching a 2 out fly. Give him credit though. He did have a great throw to the plate to hold a runner at third. 5. Someone better teach Detweiller how to pitch out of the stretch. That is when he get wild. The 3-1 called strike with no outs and the bases loaded was the biggest pitch of the day. 6. Man, I hate the off season.

  83. NatsLady - Sep 25, 2011 at 10:27 PM

    Just got home from a basically PERFECT day. Got a Livo autograph on my Livo jersey. The rest you know.Angels now doing their best to lose a game they had won. Just gave up four runs in the top of the 9th. So, yes, I think probably now that we have done with the Braves, as much as I would love to beat the Fish, it's time to ease up on both Clip and Store. We will need their arms in September of next year. Davey will be back. He took a curtain call today, and clearly enjoyed it.

  84. baseballswami - Sep 25, 2011 at 10:32 PM

    A very good weekend at Natspark – the crowds were good and sounded very pro-Nats. The support for Pudge yesterday, the absolute thunder for MPHRod's inning ( which was ridiculous, by the way), Clip, and Drew getting his 42cd save (!), the curtain call for Morse, the crowd yelling Droooooo. I just feel that there has been a sea change in the team and in the fans. When I went to see "Moneyball" the theater was full of Nats attire. I hope we finish the season by showing the Marlins that they can't push us around anymore. Some of our younger players have really grown up this year, Zim seems to have a new joy in playing since he came back, Werth seems to be settled now.I like it. Bring on 2012!

  85. Frediemac - Sep 25, 2011 at 11:12 PM

    Nats MAgic number for 3rd Place is 1 game1Nats win or 1 Mets Loss.This means something to me after we blew the end of the 05 season.

  86. JaneB - Sep 25, 2011 at 11:18 PM

    NatsLady! Then I must have seen you, because I was standing down there with my sign I made for Livan (which he ended up signing). Good for you! Saw some other imaginary friends today, as well.Love my Nats. Love this site. Lets go take care of the fish and end .500+.

  87. Navy Nats Fan - Sep 25, 2011 at 11:23 PM

    JaneB – I saw you – was sitting right in front of you for awhile to take a picture of my 9 yr old getting his glove signed by Livo. Sorry you didn't make it over for our brief meet-n-greet by Hondo – very nice to meet natsfan1 and 1a, MicheleS, and NatsLady!

  88. natsfan1a - Sep 25, 2011 at 11:23 PM

    Re. today's game. There ought to be a law against having that much fun! Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!! I'm glad that there's not a home game tomorrow because I wouldn't have any voice left after the past two.Got to meet Navy Nats Fan, NatsLady, and MicheleS before the game. Got in line for Livo auto but missed the cutoff. Hope those who did make it showed him plenty of love. I noticed him leaning on the dugout rail in the last inning when we were all on our feet cheering – looked like he was drinking it all in. Hope he enjoyed his time here as much as I enjoyed seeing him. Wish he'd been able to come up in a bunt situation so I could have shown him some love then. Love you, Livo!Speaking of cheering, my section for today was really awesome. Lots of people into the game and cheering. For once, I didn't have to put an entire section on my back and carry it. You rock, sec 204! A few game notes. My hubby called the Morse dinger. After the first or second pitch, he said he felt that Morse was about to go deep. You know the rest. We also noticed the Gomes brain, um, cramp, in forgetting how many outs there were. Dude. Seriously.Frediemac, thanks for the 3rd place update. It matters to me, too. Baby steps and progress. Speaking of which, after the game, my hubby noted that, for the first time, he felt like this could be a playoff team. I'm like, great! Have some more Kool-Aid. It's very tasty. Would you like some Nats red? :-)Last but not least, agree that the race was. so. very. lame. Geez. Before the game, Tom Jefferson was posing with some kids. I asked if they'd let Teddy win today and he gave a waving crossed hands, no way gesture, followed by a thumbs down. Tell us how you really feel, Tom. Sigh. I had great hopes for Jayson and the Bullpenauts today, but it was not to be.

  89. Steady Eddie - Sep 26, 2011 at 12:41 AM

    Navy Nats Fan @ 7:23: was Hondo really there? Geez, I would have loved to have him sign my Senators' cap I was wearing today, and tell him I saw one of his white seat ringers at RFK (unbelievable upper deck laser, it was still going UP when it hit halfway up the top section)!Of all the Nats games I've been to, only Strassy's first had that kind of playoff-type electricity as today. And the way the team played so tight around that mostly phenomenal pitching — even Gomes' two brain farts — both coming after the third oht — were amusing and did no harm. (Much as his spirit fits in really well with the team's — as does Pudge's and Livo's for that matter — I suspect he and Nix will end up being one -year rentals.) To me, the way they played the game felt like the team was sending a message to the rest of the NL and especially the East, that the Nats' wave is building and they'd better start being afraid of this team — and when the baby Nats on the farm arrive, be VERY afraid. Getting to third place and trying to finish with a winning record isn't meaningless to this squad — it's all part of sending that message: WE ARE COMING.Crowd was mostly great but lacking one thing: they almost never gor revved up with RISP. I tried to get a "let's Go Nats!" cheer going a couple of times but it may as well have been in an empty room.That one of two things all of us fanatics and STHs should tell the customer relations people in the off season. (1) tell the PA and electronic sign people to START DOING THE "LET'S GO NATS" CHEER WHEN THE NATS ARE AT Bat and can actually, y'know, GO SOMEWHERE like maybe around the bases. For some idiotic reason they only do it when the Nats are in the field. (2) We have had enough of this Teddy loser BS. I welcome all ideas on what we should plot to do collectively, but after the last three days this has gone WAY beyond lame or pathetic to some kind of manic obsession of the marketing people.Loved seeing MicheleS and JaneB today, and want to ask Nats Lady — were we sitting next to you in Sec. 214 against the Fish last Saturday night (picpic in the park day)?

  90. Navy Nats Fan - Sep 26, 2011 at 3:34 AM

    Eddie – no, I meant at the statue of Hondo. Still hoping that someday the Lerners bring him onboard as ambassador!

  91. Steady Edfie - Sep 26, 2011 at 4:12 AM

    Ah, my mistake — you wrote "meet and greet by Hondo", not with him.Would be a great idea to get him as at least a team rep (and maybe even hitting coach if he's interested?). He's supposed to be a really warm, generous and humble guy. (Favorite Hondo story — he's talking to a guy who's marveling at the distances of his white seat fingers in RFK, and Hondo responds, "Yeah, but you see all those yellow seats up there? Those were my strikeouts.")

  92. Anonymous - Sep 26, 2011 at 12:09 PM

    Envy all of you that were there… but I wouldn't trade having heard Dave and Charlie during MPH-Rod's inning for anything. I hope that one turns up online – the year's most enjoyable play-by-play by far!MASN, can we P-l-e-e-e-e-e-z-e have Charlie and Dave for TV?

Archives

Mark joins Rob Carlin and Brent Harris 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.

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