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Instant analysis: Reds 8, Nats 5 (11)

Apr 15, 2012, 9:18 PM EST

US Presswire photo
Brandon Phillips turns a double play as Jayson Werth slides into second base.

Game in a nutshell: A disastrous top of the first featured three blown calls (one by first base umpire Mike Everitt, two by plate ump Laz Diaz) put the Nationals in a 4-0 hole that later became 5-0 in the fourth. But they slowly chipped away at the lead and eventually stormed all the way back to tie it at 5 and force extra innings for the third time in four days. The late magic was nowhere to be found this time, though, as Tyler Clippard gave up three runs in the top of the 11th to bring an end to the Nats' five-game winning streak.

Hitting highlight: He may not fit the mold of a traditional leadoff man, but as long as Ian Desmond keeps producing like this, who cares? Desmond delivered three more hits today, two of them scoring runs. He also showed nice hustle and awareness to take an extra base when center fielder Chris Heisey threw to the plate. Desmond is now hitting .354 for the season.

Pitching highlight: The way things went in the top of the first — with three blown calls by the umpires leading to Ryan Ludwick's grand slam — Ross Detwiler easily could have melted down. Instead, the youngRead more »

  1. JimHoy - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:28 PM

    Despite the loss, it showed a lot to battle back from 5 runs down. And where are all the Desmond haters? I know he can't continue like this, but he's showing me a lot.In fact, the whole team is. I have a sneaking suspicion we are watching a very special team this year.

  2. Joe Seamhead - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:31 PM

    Hey, we've won three series in a row, we're still in first place, and Zimm isn't going to stay below .200 for long. We look good, folks. Stras tomorrow, Gio on Tuesday. Keep your sunglasses on, the future is looking bright.

  3. MicheleS - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:33 PM

    As Joe S said.. we have won every series, we are still in 1st and we have SS tomorrow. I will be at that game.. So I can't wait for our guys to take this game out on the Stros!Let's hope we have a new umpiring crew!

  4. SCNatsFan - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:37 PM

    Three series, three series wins so you have to be happy.Still, when DeRosa is at bat he is reminding me of Pudge with those weak, weak ground balls. Is this the same guy who hit the ball hard in spring training?And the worry if Flores has a good AB as a PH Johnson might be more prone to use him in that role went away rather quickly. Ankiel can go up and look silly at breaking balls.Astros coming, let win another series.

  5. Section 3, My PFB Sofa - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:37 PM

    And Rick Ankiel will start hitting again, maybe soon.

  6. natsfan1a - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:40 PM

    I think they have a new crew every series.As others have noted, happy with the three series wins (two on the road), and they also showed me a lot by battling back today. Also still in first as the Mets lost.

  7. Anonymous - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:47 PM

    And Rick Ankiel will start hitting again, maybe soon.General, you imagine.

  8. FS - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:48 PM

    let's keep in mind that schedule is only gonna get tougher but I think this team can handle it. GYFNG!

  9. Anonymous - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:52 PM

    I agree with the Jackie Robinson Day, but I don't agree with all players wearing #42. His number has been retired and posted on all MLB fences. You may not agree but if it wasn't for #3 (Babe Ruth) after the Black Sox scandal there would be no Jackie Robinson. Day. The Babe saved baseball and was the greatest player ever. Before you dispute name another player who had his hitting records and also won 90 plus games as a pitcher! Was hasn't the Babe's number been retired and posted on all fences, also?

  10. NatsJack in DC (Tune Inn right now) - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:55 PM

    Anonymous…… I agree with everything you say except that Jackie Robinson transcends baseball. Babe Ruth doesn't.

  11. Donald - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:58 PM

    Mark — do you know if the Umps ever review film after games? If players gripe a bit about calls, I'm wondering if the Ump carries a grudge or reviews the calls later and realizes he was wrong.Also, do they review film before games on the pitchers to see what to expect? I think I've seen some Umps get frozen by great breaking balls by Stras and there may have been one of those today.Thanks

  12. Anonymous - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:03 PM

    Time to move on to Houston. No use crying over spilt milk as they say. Let the umpiring go … still 152 games left to play.

  13. Anonymous - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:11 PM

    I really feel uncomfortable watching this team,the nats win with athleticism and luck,a players athletic ability will decrease with age,injury,and fatigue.I would like to see more station to station,line drive,home run,conventional baseball. I feel this team has more speed,motivation,and drive than any other team,but I'm not seeing good swings.

  14. Cwj - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:17 PM

    One thing bad about following a good team that starts the season 7-2, is that the losses really suck.It seems like we expect them to win every game :-)Still 7-3, 1st place.Go Nats!

  15. Anonymous - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:17 PM

    Clippard with a sore shoulder … it seems as if it was a mistake to send him out there with it. Clippard insists its normal but we've heard that before.

  16. m20832 - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:18 PM

    When, oh when, will the Nats have a good umpire crew? Can't let it go because it probably will be the same against Houston. Will the buffalo be replaced by JFlo,if JFlo continues hitting and Ramos doesn't?Is there an answer to the left field hitting woes since the beast won't be back until June, if at all?Still, it's nice to win these series.

  17. baseballswami - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:21 PM

    So the schedule will get tougher? The Reds have been favored to win the central, have you seen the way the Mets have been playing? And we opened with the Cubs – in Wrigley Field. These wins have not exactly been cookies. Especially without our mvp or closer. Right now I might want to play the Phillies.

  18. NatsJack at the Tune Inn - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:22 PM

    I think JayB's gone anon on us and adopted a new mantra. "This can't keep up!".

  19. UNTERP - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:23 PM

    I know it's cliche and all of you know this, bad umping is a part of the game. One thing, however,how many years does it seem that when a call go against the Nats bad things happen right afterwards. Also, when you leave games in the hands of the umps your asking for trouble. If Ian had made a better throw the ump wouldn't have had to make the wrong call, just sayin'. Lastly, glad that Detwiler didn't have to take the loss. Let's get 'em tomorrow…

  20. baseballswami - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:24 PM

    m20832 — it appears that most of the starters prefer Ramos as their catcher. That's going to be much more important than hitting. It does look like EJAX likes Flo, though. Ramos will come around and so will Zim. Danny has been getting on base and playing good D. He will be fine also. It sure doesn't seem like we are hitting home runs, though. Power outage — walks instead.

  21. Mick - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:27 PM

    No problem here, the only frustrating thing is that the bullpen was able to rest on Saturday and I really thought once we tied it 5-5 that a rested bull pen would have held on and that the Reds bull pen was the one that should have been tired. Any way, that is baseball and the both umpires just SUCKED!!!! I hate when those bastards in blue can effect an out come!!

  22. Mick - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:28 PM

    I wish Ryan Z had kicked dirt on the piece of crap home plate ump!

  23. Anonymous - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:31 PM

    All I want is to be able to score runs with a man on 3rd and less than two outs. Am I asking for too much?

  24. dj in Fl - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:37 PM

    @NatsJackGlad to see the Tune Inn meds are bringing back your sense of humor. Speaking of which, have you found us a shortstop that can field and hit?

  25. NatsJack leaving the Tune Inn - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:44 PM

    He can hit. The error today was marginally a tough play and everybody tells me replays show LaRoche made the play.I'm not done with him yet.

  26. baseballswami - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:47 PM

    It's been a wild 10 games – Go Nats!! Lots more fun and excitement ahead! and bourbon and maalox, of course…. I predict that ( since I am a swami and all) some days will be like yesterday and some days will be like today. Isn't that profound?

  27. Wally - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:48 PM

    Zim had the Capital One Premier play of the day on MLB Tonight.Bad officiating has been around as long as there have been sports, but I don't think I have ever seen so many bad calls in one inning against the same team like that. Really does suck.I am a little worried about Clip.

  28. A DC Wonk - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:49 PM

    MicheleS said…As Joe S said.. we have won every series, we are still in 1st and we have SS tomorrow. I will be at that game.. Me, too, MicheleS — with wife, daughter, and daughter's friend. We'll be in sec 310, row A — how about yourself?Anybody else? I'd like to meet some of the fine folks here.

  29. Just sayin' - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:53 PM

    If the Nats can take three of four from the Astros (very doable) and two of three from the Marlins (ditto), we'll be in great shape.

  30. Wally - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:56 PM

    Btw, on the out at first, the replay did clearly show that ALR came down on the bag well ahead of the runner. But Davey had an interesting comment that may have impacted the ump. He said that it looked to him that ALR tried to swipe tag the runner after he came down, making him think he missed the base. From the replays, I don't think he did (I think he was just trying to get out of the way), but I could see how Davey, from his angle, could think that. Maybe the ump had a similar angle.

  31. NatsJack still leaving the Tune Inn - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:00 PM

    Bad calls on the bases are a given. Inconsistent calls on balls an strikes ate not.

  32. sm13 - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:00 PM

    I'm more than a little worried about Clip. Seems all of our injuries start out as "a littler soreness".

  33. NatsLady - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:15 PM

    I am worried about Clip. Davey waited and waited to use him, and he didn't look right out there. Then someone said "sore shoulder." At the very least, he was under the weather or something.

  34. NatsLady - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:20 PM

    Found this on a fantasy site.Clippard has sore shoulder: Nationals manager Davey Johnson said he wanted to avoid using reliever Tyler Clippard on Sunday against the Reds because he has a sore shoulder. But Clippard was forced into action because of an extra-inning game. The results were ugly as Cincinnati broke open a 5-all game against Clippard (1-1) in the 11th inning. Clippard was charged with three runs on four hits in an inning of work. He struck out one.

  35. dj in Fl. - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:24 PM

    @NatsJack, That was a joke!!!I thought Desi did great in the field today. That error was on the ump, not Desi.But he is only hitting .354Also, dosen't Clip pitch better when his arm is a little tired?

  36. Gonat - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:28 PM

    NatsJack leaving the Tune Inn said… He can hit. The error today was marginally a tough play and everybody tells me replays show LaRoche made the play.I'm not done with him yet. April 15, 2012 6:44 PM ___________________________It was a tough play and LaRoche made the play. Blown call. Clear and simple.

  37. Gonat - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:34 PM

    Key stat: Prior to this season, Craig Stammen struck out one of every 7.1 big-league batters he faced. So far this year, he's struck out one of every 3.2 opposing hitters._________________________________When Ross Detwiler moved to the rotation, Stammen got the last spot in the bullpen. He has made the most of it but like I said early in Spring Training—he came in to ST in the best shape of his life which in actuality means he worked hard and earned it.Glad to see this is all translating well for Stammen.

  38. Cwj - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:47 PM

    Gonat- Yeah Stammen has been pitching very well.I'm glad to see it.I hope Clippard will be fine health-wise. I know he will be fine effectiveness-wise :-)

  39. Gonat - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:58 PM

    JimHoy said… Despite the loss, it showed a lot to battle back from 5 runs down. And where are all the Desmond haters? I know he can't continue like this, but he's showing me a lot.In fact, the whole team is. I have a sneaking suspicion we are watching a very special team this year. April 15, 2012 5:28 PM ____________________________Yah, where are the haters? Where are all the haters that wanted to trade Desmond for a box of balls?I have spent a lot of time learning from a few people that are much smarter than me and they are all on this blog and they have said that Adam LaRoche when healthy would return to his career averages (he's above that now) but certainly not the guy we saw playing injured in 2011.They also have said Desmond is a work-in-progress and this would be his key year, and that we should see what Desmond comes out to play in 2012 and we should hope to see the Desmond that showed promise mid-August 2011 to the end of the 2011 season. These 2 guys + the much beaten up Werth are the offensive reasons this team is where they are now.I don't know how long it will stay this way, lets just enjoy it while we can.BTW, Desi got #2 Web Gem on the ball over the middle and Ryan Zimmerman got the #1 Web Gem for his diving play on the foul line.

  40. SonnyG10 - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:59 PM

    The bad call at first base cost us the game. We would have won 5-1 in regulation 9 innings except for that bad call. The 1st base ump is supposed to be looking at the base for the runners foot (and 1st baseman's foot) and listening for the ball hitting the glove. He should not have been looking at a swipe tag.

  41. sjm308 - Apr 16, 2012 at 12:01 AM

    Tough loss – looking to win our 4th series starting tomorrow. Wonk, unfortunately I will now be wearing the blue 1953 with a red small block W tomorrow. Will be looking for you.GO NATS!!

  42. Anonymous - Apr 16, 2012 at 12:14 AM

    Stammen and Gorzelanny are the glue between the starters and the back-end of the bullpen that will hold this staff together. One can see why Davey wanted two. He should have gone with Gorzo again instead of Clippard but I guess he had to find out if Clippard was telling him the truth about his "sore arm" as normal for this time of year.Seems to me like it may be time for Tyler Clippard to join his apartment mate Drew Storen on the DL for a short stint to ensure something more serious doesn't occur with his arm. Given how conservative Davey that seems likely to occur. They'll be fine with Mattheus, HRod, and Lidge. If they need someone else they can bring up Severino or add Hassan Pena (another HRod/Aroldis Chapman clone with hight nineties triple digit heater) to the blank spot on the 40-man vacated by Brett Carroll, as he seems to be doing pretty well in Syracuse.





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