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Game 32: Nats at Reds

May 11, 2012, 8:07 PM EDT

US Presswire file photo
Great American Ball Park hosts the Nationals this weekend.

Davey Johnson preached consistency all week in Pittsburgh, so why change now? Fresh off a much-needed, 4-2 win over the Pirates, the Nationals manager is sending the exact same lineup out to face the Reds tonight in their series opener in Cincinnati (except for a swap of catchers, with Wilson Ramos back behind the plate).

The Nats' stagnant bats finally exploded last night, with Roger Bernadina, Adam LaRoche and Rick Ankiel all connecting for home runs. And now that they get to spend the weekend in the much-cozier Great American Ball Park, don't be surprised if you see some more power displays. This wouldn't be a bad place for Bryce Harper to club his first career homer.

It also wouldn't be a bad place for Gio Gonzalez to launch the first longball of his career. Call me crazy, but I could see the gregarious left-hander doing it tonight. He's been showing off some serious skills with the bat lately, and something tells me he might just be swinging for the fences when he steps to the plate against Mike Leake.

I'm not in Cincinnati for the series this weekend, going to spend some quality time with the family back here in D.C. But please continue and enjoy the conversation as always…

WASHINGTON NATIONALS at CINCINNATI REDS
Where: Great American Ball Park
Gametime: 7:10 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN2, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), XM 188
Weather: Clear, 71 degrees, Wind 2 mph in from RF

NATIONALS (19-12)
SS Ian Desmond
LF Roger Bernadina
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche

Read more »

247 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. A DC Wonk - May 11, 2012 at 8:18 PM

    (Hi Davey! ;-))From last threadSection 222 said… There's a big difference btw leaving a starter in after a bad first inning and leaving a reliever in with the game on the line when it's clear he doesn't have his good stuff or has thrown two wild pitches already.Pittsburgh left Harnahan in after three or four pitches *hit the backstop*, and after he hit a batter! Was that also dumb?Last night, Strasburg walked three in a row, including the last one *on four pitches*. Was leaving him in dumb?Look — a pitcher is going to have to learn how to get out of an inning when he doesn't have his best stuff. That's how you really learn how to _pitch_ rather than throw.You can call it dumb, but I tend to think Davey knows what he's doing with HRod. As I've said all year (and, btw, nice to hear from all the HRod lovers today, but where were you all the other night?! I was feeling lonely defending him!) — HRod has the potential to be one of the _greats_. When his slider is on, he is completely unhittable. (And, no matter how awesome it looks on TV, it looks even more awesome in person). There's a reason he pitched seven straight innings of no-hit ball over seven games . . . when he's on, he's the best. He just has to learn how to do it when he's not on. He'll learn. And we'll get frustrated . . . but Davey is building a team he can depend on (or, conversely, figuring out which guys he can't depend on) for a September wildcard race that we're going to have to do without Strasburg.And if you think that's dumb, well, like I said in the last thread: that's how Davey rolls. Get used to it, or else double up on your bourbon and maalox, cuz it's going to keep happening.

  2. m20832 - May 11, 2012 at 8:29 PM

    Just an observation, but didn't Gascanarahan pitch that way for the Nats everytime he got up in relief?Beat them Reds! GYFNG!!!

  3. peric - May 11, 2012 at 8:32 PM

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  4. peric - May 11, 2012 at 8:34 PM

    but Davey is building a team he can depend on (or, conversely, figuring out which guys he can't depend on) for a September wildcard race that we're going to have to do without Strasburg.Concise and perfectly stated! And stop bellyaching about Espinosa … he is still under construction … developing. Let Davey and Player Development do their jobs. As Michelle pointed out Davey is damned good at … and with a decade or so tacked on may be ever better. Rizzo is great at it. See DiamondBacks, AZ. These aren't favored AAAA "veterans"at the end of their careers that Riggleman wanted to take care of and keep playing. These are bonafide top prospects under development. Davey loves that aspect of his job which makes him a perfect match for this team.

  5. Doc - May 11, 2012 at 8:37 PM

    It would be fun seeing GGon go long gone, as well as the Oppo Boppo guy putting one in the seats.But it would even better for Espi to lauch few into the seats.Goooooooooooooo Espi!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. That old-school, prestigious way of Scooter - May 11, 2012 at 8:38 PM

    You know, even from the beginning, when we all thought he'd be a disaster with the bat, I liked Gonzalez's swing. Level, even, not trying to do too much. I guess he's coordinated enough to make solid contact, and at major-league speeds, the ball carries.That is to say, I think he's making the most of what he's got.

  7. SonnyG10 - May 11, 2012 at 8:39 PM

    Well said, peric.

  8. howl31 - May 11, 2012 at 8:40 PM

    H-Rod is Brad Lidge circa 2003… too many walks, too many wild pitches… but the ceiling to be absolutely dominant at the end of a ball game…

  9. peric - May 11, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  10. peric - May 11, 2012 at 8:43 PM

    I guess he's coordinated enough to make solid contact, and at major-league speeds, the ball carries.I guess Gio's personality gets him a lot more press … go figure. But has anyone noticed that Strasburg already has 3 doubles? And Edwin Jackson has a .250 BA? And they're not even as good at hitting as Zimmermann! The whole staff can help themselves from that nine hole … albeit Detwiler looks the weakest.

  11. natsfan1a - May 11, 2012 at 8:45 PM

    (raises hand) I've stuck up for him, too. However, my commenting tends to be either before or after games (if I'm still awake in the latter case) rather than during. Just think of it as a character-building exercise in situations where you are the lone voice for a position. ;-)As I've said all year (and, btw, nice to hear from all the HRod lovers today, but where were you all the other night?! I was feeling lonely defending him!)

  12. baseballswami - May 11, 2012 at 8:45 PM

    You can tell the kind of season we are having when four runs is "stagnant bats finally exploding". Although, if you look at our games, most of the time four runs would easily win a game. Strassie and Gio both really swinging the bat, EJax can hit, I think JZim can also, and Det makes contact. I love it!!!

  13. natsfan1a - May 11, 2012 at 8:47 PM

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  14. peric - May 11, 2012 at 8:48 PM

    I've always been an HRod fan. He makes sense. Not sure he will ever be a bonafide closer but Davey (and thus Rizzo) seem to have a lot of faith in him in that role. It'll be interesting to see what they decide to do when Storen returns.

  15. natsfan1a - May 11, 2012 at 8:48 PM

    Speaking of Lidge, I am reminded of a t-shirt I saw on a Phillies Phan at a game last weekend. It said "Lidge happens. Most of the time." :-)

  16. natsfan1a - May 11, 2012 at 8:49 PM

    Oh, and Goooooooooooo, Gioooooooooooo!! Go, NATS!!

  17. NatsLady - May 11, 2012 at 8:54 PM

    Stras has hit three doubles; given up three doubles. It was noted in Baseball Today.

  18. NatsNut - May 11, 2012 at 9:00 PM

    (reposting)Aren't they the same thing?Manassas Nats' Fan said… …GO Gio, Zim, and EJax. Go hitters

  19. peric - May 11, 2012 at 9:01 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  20. peric - May 11, 2012 at 9:03 PM

    H-Rod is Brad Lidge circa 2003… too many walks, too many wild pitches… but the ceiling to be absolutely dominant at the end of a ball game…More like a Nolan Ryan or Randy Johnson … Ryan started out as a closer for the Mets. Some manage to gain consistency by learning from their mistakes gaining baseball wisdom from good coaching. Others don't listen and fall by the wayside … (Mock, Garret and a host of others). Henry is still developing, just like Espinosa. It takes time. But that's part and parcel of building a perennially successful and completive major league baseball team. They are doing all the right things. And remember? YOU ALL CALLED me the negative anon! Right 1A? There's a difference between understanding baseball and not IMO. Right now no one should be complaining. Look at the record! In spite of the injuries and the painful development cycles they are WINNING! And learning. And they aren't panicking and bringing in washed up AAAA geezers to rescue them when they hit snags in the road.I NOW OFFICIALLY LABEL ALL OF YOU WHINERS the aggravating, diatribe inducing NEG-ANON's.

  21. NatsNut - May 11, 2012 at 9:09 PM

    whoa, whoa, whoa. Why you gotta bring 1a into your little hissy fit?

  22. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 9:14 PM

    Ummm where did that come from? Most of us are not complaining (least of all 1A).

  23. Section 222 - May 11, 2012 at 9:18 PM

    Pittsburgh left Harnahan in after three or four pitches *hit the backstop*, and after he hit a batter! Was that also dumb? Sorry to repeat myself, but Hanrahan has an entire season of All-Star quality closing work behind him. He's figured it out. He has proven he deserves a longer rope than H-Rod. And, of course, Hurdle did remove Hanrahan the night after he blew the save but before the Nats could open up a bigger lead. Was Hurdle wrong to do that? H-Rod has closed what, 12 games at this point? He could be Mariano Rivera (or Joel Hanrahan), but he isn't yet.Last night, Strasburg walked three in a row, including the last one *on four pitches*. Was leaving him in dumb? You aren't seriously comparing H-Rod to Strasburg, are you? In any event, I wasn't watching the game at the time so I don't know quite how wild Strasburg had become, but I'm willing to go along with Davey's judgment that he had a better chance of getting out of that jam than any reliever we have. Can you make the same claim about H-Rod the previous night, with the tying run on 3rd and everyone in park knowing he had to throw a fastball? I don't think Davey left Strasburg in to get the experience of working out of a jam. He was trying to win the game, which is what I think he should have done the night before, and in LA, with H-Rod.When he's on, he's the best. He just has to learn how to do it when he's not on.Believe me, I'm with you on the merits of H-Rod. He can be unhittable when he's on. Where you and I disagree is your second statement — that he has to "learn how to do it when he's not on." That's what you have the rest of the bullpen for. Under your theory, no pitcher would ever be pulled except for pitch count reasons. If somebody doesn't have it, you'd say leave him in and the consequenced be damned because he has to learn how to get through adversity and getting shelled with pay off later in the year. That's a ticket to a losing season.I'm not suggesting that H-Rod should be pulled at the first sign of trouble. Only that someone be ready to replace him so he can be pulled before he loses the game if it's clear he's not on. Nothing that happened last night has changed my view. Wins now are just as valuable as wins in September.

  24. peric - May 11, 2012 at 9:20 PM

    whoa, whoa, whoa. Why you gotta bring 1a into your little hissy fit?Ummm where did that come from? Most of us are not complaining (least of all 1A).She complained a lot about NEG-ANONS … so where IS SHE NOW with these "named" NEG-ANONS! Far more egregious IMO because they are trampling on a talent who could be a potential superstar and replacing him with Lombardozzi? Lombo's a good player and Davey put him in the perfect role and a HUGE team need. The noveaux NEG-ANONS constantly complain about Espinosa. Or its Gorzo, they wan to trade or DFA Gorzo. Or its HRod. Well? How-za-about preaching at them!

  25. NatsLady - May 11, 2012 at 9:24 PM

    I was watching the game. Strasburg, very very suddenly, got tired and lost the strike zone, and walked three in a row to load the bases. It happened too fast to get anyone up in the bullpen. Davey said afterwards he was expecting/hoping Stras could go seven innings (this was the 6th). Maybe after the second walk Davey and McCatty could have stalled and gotten someone ready, but in the end, he hoped that Stras could reach back and get the last batter (helped by the last batter swinging on the first pitch).

  26. peric - May 11, 2012 at 9:29 PM

    Maybe after the second walk Davey and McCatty could have stalled and gotten someone ready, but in the end, he hoped that Stras could reach back and get the last batter (helped by the last batter swinging on the first pitch).The point here? Stras isn't a starter who has been to 4 or 5 all star games and pitched in a couple of world series. He is still developing … even after this season he will have yet to have pitched a season in it's entirely! He is going to get shutdown or have Scoot Boras call Rizzo on the carpet. But Mike Rizzo will do the right thing by his pitcher. Stop behaving as if Stras or Henry are Sandy Koufax or Mariano Rivera. They are still developing and its all good. You learn by making mistakes.

  27. NatsLady - May 11, 2012 at 9:30 PM

    I wasn't making any point, just describing what happened for the person who didn't see the game.

  28. peric - May 11, 2012 at 9:31 PM

    I wasn't making any point, just describing what happened for the person who didn't see the game.I'm making the point.

  29. peric - May 11, 2012 at 9:33 PM

    Just an observation, but didn't Gascanarahan pitch that way for the Nats everytime he got up in relief?He was significantly worse. And they kept trotting him out for the same reason. He was a huge young talent with a high ceiling. Rizzo just came to the conclusion that he needed a change of scenery and he was right.

  30. #4 - May 11, 2012 at 9:41 PM

    Test

  31. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 9:44 PM

    NatsLady, I saw that, was a little suprised the team forfeited. You can't compete against girls on the field? What century are we living in?

  32. #4 - May 11, 2012 at 9:49 PM

    As a Catholic and the father of a softball player who played baseball with the boys until she was 12, I am both saddened and disgusted by that story. __

  33. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 10:00 PM

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  34. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 10:02 PM

    Peric, when poster's were anon's Or NegAnon's you never knew who was posting. Was it multiple people? Or was it one? Sometimes by the comments you could tell it was multiple people, sometimes you couldn't. Plus sometimes when the Neg's took over, it would overwhelm any other conversation. I think now that everyone is named, you get an idea of where some of the commentators are coming from based on history. Some people like stats, some like to point out plays, positions, etc, some are critical, others cheer. I don't think anyone bemoans an opinion, just when it gets into name calling or other inappropriate comments.

  35. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 10:08 PM

    Some Stras Love…STRASMAS!I wonder how EJax would react to being called Old-donkey's behind.

  36. natsfan1a - May 11, 2012 at 10:10 PM

    I don't know why I'm even bothering to respond or to defend myself, because I usually just ignore it when Peric rants at me. That said, I've been supportive of Henry. I was not the one who posted the Lidge comparison. However, that comment did bring to mind a t-shirt I'd seen that referenced Lidge. I'd been meaning to mention the t-shirt, but didn't remember it until now. Back to "ignore" mode now. Have a lovely evening. ;-)

  37. natsfan1a - May 11, 2012 at 10:11 PM

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  38. phil dunton - May 11, 2012 at 10:16 PM

    Davey Johnson is a very stubborn man, especially when it comes to Espinosa. H-Rod and Eckstein.

  39. baseballswami - May 11, 2012 at 10:16 PM

    I turned on the Mid-Atlantic Snooze Fest to see the GIo interview. He is just hilarious! He and EJax are great friends and apparently make up words. Their word today is "swagoo" — it's when you have so much swagger it just drips off you! I just don't remember the pitching staff, JZim, Stras or Det smiling so much before. I think he really keeps them loose. Sounds like they all get along well. That can only be a good thing for the team. I certainly hope the position players can find some competition or chemistry and get going.

  40. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    1a…..don't worry. Peric has to attack someone in most of his posts. It self inflates his ego. Wear it as a badge of honor.

  41. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - May 11, 2012 at 10:22 PM

    Maybe we need a second channel.

  42. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - May 11, 2012 at 10:25 PM

    She complained a lot about NEG-ANONSNo, she never did. You're totally living in your own private alternate universe blog sometimes, I swear. It's gotten better since the switch, but honestly.

  43. A DC Wonk - May 11, 2012 at 10:25 PM

    I NOW OFFICIALLY LABEL ALL OF YOU WHINERS the aggravating, diatribe inducing NEG-ANON's.All?! Excuse me . . . check my past posts, bud.(You know, you make some great points . . . but sometimes you unnecessarily go too far, which then undermines what you're saying <– not a whine, just an observation ;-) ).

  44. natsfan1a - May 11, 2012 at 10:27 PM

    Thanks, NatsJack. That's cute about the made-up words, Swami.

  45. A DC Wonk - May 11, 2012 at 10:27 PM

    Davey Johnson is a very stubborn man, especially when it comes to Espinosa. H-Rod… And his results are stubborn, too. Stubbornly, consistently, terrific. Doesn't he have approximately the second highest winning PCT of all current major league managers?

  46. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 10:27 PM

    Hey NatsJack.. Did you see that Heath Bell got reinstated as closer! Chaos ensues down in Miami!

  47. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2012 at 10:31 PM

    Yep MicheleS…..And I got an e-mail from my second favorite GM saying they want to take down the Fish and wishing the Nats well in Cincy.

  48. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 10:58 PM

    Do you think if Gio hits one out tonight he does cartwheels around the bases?

  49. sm13 - May 11, 2012 at 11:05 PM

    That's good of Sandy to say, Natsjack .I'd like to see the Marlins get swept (out to sea) by the Mets.

  50. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2012 at 11:10 PM

    And we've already marked the calendar for that weekend series in August for our annual reumion. We want to be battling each other them.

  51. sm13 - May 11, 2012 at 11:13 PM

    That would warm my born-in-Queens heart, natsjack.

  52. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2012 at 11:16 PM

    I like Shark choking up with 2 strikes.

  53. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 11:17 PM

    SHARK ATTACK!!!!

  54. SpingfieldNatsFan1 - May 11, 2012 at 11:17 PM

    Wahoo!!!!!! Shark!!!!!!!!

  55. RickH - May 11, 2012 at 11:17 PM

    Whoa, Nellie!!!

  56. sm13 - May 11, 2012 at 11:18 PM

    Great at bat for Roger. Is this the Roger we've been waiting for?

  57. whatsanattau - May 11, 2012 at 11:19 PM

    Rats, I missed my opportunity to defend the first lady and crush on the pompous…. oh well, there's always tomorrow.(Go Shark!)

  58. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 11, 2012 at 11:20 PM

    They can take me away now.

  59. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 11, 2012 at 11:21 PM

    What have they slipped in Shark's Gatorade?

  60. RickH - May 11, 2012 at 11:22 PM

    Ryan … Watch out for that shoulder!

  61. JaneB - May 11, 2012 at 11:23 PM

    Ignore Peric.And GO SHARK!!!!Go Gio when it becomes your turn in a while from now GYFNG!

  62. sm13 - May 11, 2012 at 11:23 PM

    Ryan, causing heart stoppage all over DC…

  63. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 11:23 PM

    I don't like that tumbling slide by RZ.. that's not good for shoulders. but he is laughing in the dugout.

  64. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 11, 2012 at 11:24 PM

    When is Zimm's next MRI scheduled?

  65. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 11:25 PM

    Wow.. a lot of hair got chopped off the Faux Hawk.

  66. rdexposfan - May 11, 2012 at 11:26 PM

    Hope Zimm didn't hurt himself at home.

  67. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 11:28 PM

    When was the last time a starter had 3 runs walking into the game?

  68. baseballswami - May 11, 2012 at 11:34 PM

    MicheleS – Did you see Detweiler's haircut? Looks like he is ready for military service. Two for one special at the HairCuttery in Cincy?

  69. RickH - May 11, 2012 at 11:34 PM

    Wow! Nice play by Ian and Adam.

  70. JB - May 11, 2012 at 11:35 PM

    MichelleS, when was the last time a starter had a LEAD walking into the game? (Seriously. C&D mentioned that we only had 3 1st inning runs this year, but didn't say home or away)

  71. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 11:36 PM

    Swammi.. Dang it, Ross shouldn't be cutting his hair. He probably lost 3 pounds doing that.

  72. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 11:38 PM

    2 Web Gems in 1 inning.

  73. RickH - May 11, 2012 at 11:38 PM

    And nice play by Danny!

  74. peric - May 11, 2012 at 11:40 PM

    Anything else to say about Danny Espinosa? I rather doubt that Lombo could make that play … of course there are very few true second basemen who could.

  75. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 11, 2012 at 11:40 PM

    Hitting, fielding, long ball, pitching. I am living a dream. Please, please do not wake me.

  76. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 11:42 PM

    Peric, if you will notice, the Espi comments are about the Bat, never the glove. (And I have the Jersey and wore it last night)

  77. TimDz - May 11, 2012 at 11:43 PM

    Peric,It WAS a great play…Best to leave it at that…

  78. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 11:43 PM

    Good to hear Davey chirping about the strike zone, that was a rotten call.

  79. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 11, 2012 at 11:45 PM

    Gonat May 11, 2012 11:40 AMNatsLady, agree at the leadoff but then Desi changes in the later innings to seeing more pitches.My feeling is, he is a .167 hitter to leadoff the game so its not working in the 1st inning, clearly. Sit him down and say you are doing great in every inning but the 1st. You have to lay off the first pitch for a while and I want you to get to more hitters counts in the 1st inning like a 2-1 or 3-1 then PARTY.Can they change his mindset? Yes, Davey did it last year. Did you send this to Davey? It's exactly as you wrote it. Took the 1st pitch, worked the count to 2-1 and the PARTIED!!!!

  80. peric - May 11, 2012 at 11:45 PM

    No, she never did. You're totally living in your own private alternate universe blog sometimes, I swear. It's gotten better since the switch, but honestlyHonestly, YES SHE DID on multiple occasions. Sec3a that's kind of like saying everyone thought Morse was great player and no one believed he was a AAAA? Right. You guys come to her defense her because she's a woman. And NatsJack? If anyone is guilty of inflating his ego its you old dude.Everyone of your comments are mostly about that … talk about the kettle calling the pot black. But it is fun to poke at you … I admit.

  81. RickH - May 11, 2012 at 11:45 PM

    Who are these guys?

  82. rdexposfan - May 11, 2012 at 11:45 PM

    Shark attack!!!!!

  83. RickH - May 11, 2012 at 11:46 PM

    Roger's making a case for himself. Good for him.

  84. peric - May 11, 2012 at 11:47 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  85. JB - May 11, 2012 at 11:48 PM

    Game is on and it's a good one. Can we focus on that?NatinBeantown

  86. peric - May 11, 2012 at 11:48 PM

    Peric, if you will notice, the Espi comments are about the Bat, never the glove. (And I have the Jersey and wore it last night)Given how good HIS with the glove a lot of teams would put him in the lineup at short or second and not worry about his BA. He's that good. But everyone (including Danny unfortunately, you can see that) expects a lot more. Yep, he could be a super star no doubt. How about letting the experts develop him and see how far they can get before you jump in with "your expertise". Sheesh!

  87. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 11:48 PM

    Peric, I tried to reason with you and be polite, but that is ENOUGH. WE are coming to her defense because 1A happens to be a lively commentator who has added humor over the last several years, even when we have had NOTHING to cheer about. Your feud with NatsJack is petty and Childish. STOP, it is very unbecoming of you. And Yes, when you are not snipping at people, you do have good comments and add to the conversation, but tonight you are being rude and petty.

  88. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2012 at 11:49 PM

    All us Shark people have asked for is consistant playing time.

  89. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 11, 2012 at 11:49 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  90. peric - May 11, 2012 at 11:50 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  91. sm13 - May 11, 2012 at 11:51 PM

    Best 2 atbats by Roger in quite a while.On the haircut issue, I'm betting it was Gio's personal barber. Yes he has one – I heard him talk about it with our ex-GM on XM right after the trade.

  92. MicheleS - May 11, 2012 at 11:51 PM

    And Peric,I NEVER claimed expertise about Danny or anyone else. I simply stated stated the comments have been about the bat not the glove.And to the rest of you..I know trying to reason or fight with Peric is pointless so I am done.

  93. peric - May 11, 2012 at 11:52 PM

    ENOUGH. WE are coming to her defense because 1A happens to be a lively commentatorSure when you say THE SAME to NatJack the sycophant. And Michelle I've been here A LOT longer than you. YES Natsfan1A HAS NOT always so congenial or must I dredge up her comments to prove that?

  94. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2012 at 11:56 PM

    Just read your comment MicheleS. I stopped acknowledging perics comments some time ago and only respond to knowledgeable posters who mention peric in there posts.Thanks but neither I nor 1a need any support when it comes to him or her whoever they are.

  95. DWS - May 11, 2012 at 11:57 PM

    Excuse me. 1st place. 4-0. Shark raking.What's not to like?

  96. rdexposfan - May 12, 2012 at 12:01 AM

    Bryce Harper cut his rattail off.

  97. sm13 - May 12, 2012 at 12:01 AM

    DWS – and Gi-O dealing!

  98. TimDz - May 12, 2012 at 12:04 AM

    Off topic …That Geico taste test commercial is working my last nerve…Once more, I may need to open a vein …

  99. JB - May 12, 2012 at 12:05 AM

    DWS,Thanks. And pass the peanuts.Nice the Gio owns tonight even without his curve working.NatinBeantown

  100. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 12:05 AM

    rdexposfan… I want the rat tail back.

  101. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 12:06 AM

    Wait! Do we get wings from Hard Times now? Go Danny!!!!

  102. RickH - May 12, 2012 at 12:06 AM

    I say again, Who are these guys???

  103. sm13 - May 12, 2012 at 12:06 AM

    Good for Danny!

  104. NatsJack in Florida - May 12, 2012 at 12:07 AM

    Danny….SWEET!!!!

  105. JB - May 12, 2012 at 12:07 AM

    Loving it. Just save some bullets for JZimm tomorrow!

  106. whatsanattau - May 12, 2012 at 12:08 AM

    Come on down dude, that cross looks uncomfortable.

  107. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 12:09 AM

    So I am thinking Stras gave the pregame pep talk. "Did you guys see that Leake called me a cry baby? He is a petty thief! I am not pitching in this series. Make him pay!"

  108. Grandstander - May 12, 2012 at 12:09 AM

    Wings from Hard Times are only for home games with a ticket stub. But, we do get 50% of Papa Johns orders for all of tomorrow. Promo code NATS50

  109. TimDz - May 12, 2012 at 12:10 AM

    Not to look the proverbial horse in the mouth, but do the Reds not read the paper?

  110. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 12:12 AM

    Thanks Grandstander.. Going to a Game 7 party tomorrow night. That might come in handy!

  111. sm13 - May 12, 2012 at 12:16 AM

    Gio's got the k street fever

  112. NatsJack in Florida - May 12, 2012 at 12:19 AM

    This is so fun!Is there a shoe that's going to dtop and wake me ip?

  113. DWS - May 12, 2012 at 12:20 AM

    These guys are a team that are playing without a full lineup from day one. They are a team that nobody is going to take for granted. They are a team that is going to kick ass when healthy. You lucky folks in Washington are seeing the Braves redux.Great to win the East but sucks when you don't win it all. Hello Braves and Phillies.

  114. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 12:21 AM

    this is a serious ?.. Aren't the Reds supposed to be good?

  115. whatsanattau - May 12, 2012 at 12:31 AM

    even good teams have occasional bad pitching …. well, … most of them.

  116. Grandstander - May 12, 2012 at 12:35 AM

    lol @ carpenter saying there's no stat to track how many outs a pitcher gets. Guess he's never heard of innings pitched…

  117. DWS - May 12, 2012 at 12:38 AM

    Perhaps SS can give him a few pointers. I don't know..throw strikes?I am so enjoying Gio with a lead.

  118. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 12:53 AM

    Why is Gio not swinging? I didn't catch that from FP and carp?

  119. baseballswami - May 12, 2012 at 12:55 AM

    Does anyone else feel that Gio is pitching un-like himself tonight? Something just seems off. I know that sounds stupid with him striking out the universe. It would actually be better for him at this point if they would make some early contact. Where is the big 12 to six?

  120. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - May 12, 2012 at 12:57 AM

    Honestly, YES SHE DID on multiple occasions. She never did. Go find them. Take your time. Be thorough. People defend the folks they like. No one is defending you. Think about that.

  121. NatsJack in Florida - May 12, 2012 at 12:58 AM

    I'm with you. Gio is really struggling.

  122. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 12:59 AM

    Swami, agree, that's why I was wondering about the not swinging the bat. Just a weird evening

  123. baseballswami - May 12, 2012 at 1:00 AM

    I think we are going to find out later that something ( hopefully minor) is wrong – like a blister or something. He couldn't swing the bat and he has thrown only fast balls. Now that they have seen it so much – they are going to tatoo it. They are on to him. 7 runs is not a lot in this teeny tiny park. I was at the game in natspark last year where we were 8 runs up on Chicago – I am scarred for life – enough said.

  124. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 12, 2012 at 1:04 AM

    As usual, I'm with NatsJack and MicheleS, swami. Gio is going to be life and death to get five in before we turn it over to Gorzo. He's thrown a ton of pitches to get 4.1 innings in the bank. Somebody tell Carp that basically means 13 outs. More or less.

  125. Fear and Ignorance - May 12, 2012 at 1:06 AM

    Gio has been wearing a cast on his right wrist/hand. I got to meet him the other night and he had it on.

  126. baseballswami - May 12, 2012 at 1:10 AM

    That was an incredibly gutsy performance. The bullpen needs to pick him up and carry it home. In this park – some insurance might be nice.

  127. sm13 - May 12, 2012 at 1:10 AM

    Wow – That was impressive by Gio. Battling with one pitch.

  128. TimDz - May 12, 2012 at 1:10 AM

    Cajones….Enuf said….Nice job Gio….

  129. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 1:11 AM

    well at least that inning is over…

  130. Steady Eddie - May 12, 2012 at 1:20 AM

    Nick Johnson just hit a 2run dinger to give the Os the lead. Don't care about the Os coming back but nice to see Nick get his first of the year.

  131. sm13 - May 12, 2012 at 1:24 AM

    Yay Nick. Actually would be pretty cool if next weeend's series was a battle of 2 first place teams.

  132. baseballswami - May 12, 2012 at 1:29 AM

    That would really be sweet.

  133. UnkyD - May 12, 2012 at 1:29 AM

    DON'T MAKE ME STOP THIS CAR!!!!

  134. Fear and Ignorance - May 12, 2012 at 1:38 AM

    I really hope they just keep Stammen out there for the 8th . No need to make any changes right now. He is really in a nice rhythm.

  135. DWS - May 12, 2012 at 1:39 AM

    Ditto F+I

  136. rdexposfan - May 12, 2012 at 1:50 AM

    Anyone know why Harper has blood on his face

  137. TimDz - May 12, 2012 at 1:53 AM

    Rdex….pimple?

  138. NatsJack in Florida - May 12, 2012 at 1:55 AM

    Is Sean Burnett still on this team? And why is everything up in the zone?

  139. FS=Faraz Shaikh - May 12, 2012 at 2:01 AM

    i can't keep up. my bp just keeps going up. :P

  140. sjm308 - May 12, 2012 at 2:01 AM

    Can these guys ever have an easy time? I have now switched from downstairs tv to upstairs tv to the radio and none of it is working. OK, big out with the bases loaded. Get one more out please. Sofa – you nailed it at 8:57. natsfan1a can take care of herself but she does have the support of a lot of people here, the other guy, has the support of his own ego. Surprised he still posts here since he has no use for Mark or most of us.

  141. sm13 - May 12, 2012 at 2:04 AM

    Maybe it's warpaint, not blood?

  142. rdexposfan - May 12, 2012 at 2:04 AM

    Anyone want to pass over some Maalox.

  143. Scott from Burke - May 12, 2012 at 2:09 AM

    they made abig deal of zim catching the popup but it was an infield fly..the batter was out

  144. rdexposfan - May 12, 2012 at 2:10 AM

    Harper's bleeding face

  145. sjm308 - May 12, 2012 at 2:15 AM

    Harper struggling now, had to figure that and lets hope he works out of it soon. Three more outs!!!

  146. NatsJack in Florida - May 12, 2012 at 2:19 AM

    Sjm308.. Yep… This is the "slow start" everyone has seen in his developement and it will pass. It may take a week or two but rest assured, he'll adjust.

  147. sm13 - May 12, 2012 at 2:19 AM

    No real need to double switch Bryce out of the game. Wonder if he needs a couple of stitches?Good to see the long lost Sean on the Hill.

  148. RickH - May 12, 2012 at 2:22 AM

    This game seemed closer than the final score.

  149. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 2:23 AM

    WOOOOOOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOOOO! Good win tonight!

  150. UnkyD - May 12, 2012 at 2:24 AM

    Is there such a thing as a portable submarine horn?

  151. Fear and Ignorance - May 12, 2012 at 2:25 AM

    SJM308-They mentioned tonight on the telecast that Harper was a "guess hitter". He has way too much talent to rely upon guessing up there. I hope they are working on that because he is going to have trouble trying to outsmart major league pitchers.

  152. sm13 - May 12, 2012 at 2:26 AM

    I second that wooooo hooooo

  153. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 12, 2012 at 2:27 AM

    "WOOOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOOOOO!"(Copyright, MicheleS, 2011).May 12: Nats still atop the NL East.Great managing by Grandpa Davey. Handled the bullpen great.

  154. natsfan1a - May 12, 2012 at 2:28 AM

    Yay, NATS WIN!! Atta way, Gio. Atta way, Nats.

  155. sjm308 - May 12, 2012 at 2:31 AM

    Woooo Hooo!!!!(copyright MicheleS, 2011)Thanks to Fear and Natsjack for the confirmation. I agree with Fear that I am hoping someone is working with him. This might sound stupid but I am guessing that Jason Werth would have been that person and I hope he gets back to the dugout soon.First place for another day – last I checked, the Braves were ahead and so were the Mets. How great is a baseball season where there are so many peaks and valleys.

  156. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - May 12, 2012 at 2:33 AM

    they made abig deal of zim catching the popup but it was an infield fly..the batter was outThe ball is still live, and runners can advance at their risk. Popups like that have a lot of spin, and especially on a fast infield, they can take odd hops. That said, no, it wasn't a tough catch. Funny watching Mattheus looking for help, though.

  157. sjm308 - May 12, 2012 at 2:34 AM

    Just posted mis-information. Marlins came back to beat Mets in the bottom of the 9th and the Cards have gone ahead of the Braves with a couple innings left.

  158. Scott from Burke - May 12, 2012 at 2:38 AM

    Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa said… The ball is still live, and runners can advance at their risk. the batter WAS out, yes? Zim drops it the runners don't go anywhere…or it's gonna be a double play..

  159. ehay2k - May 12, 2012 at 2:40 AM

    What in the world happened to Harper's face? I turn on the game, and he has apparently been playing hockey?!Peric, I will just say I am severely disappointed I you. You had a string of very good, well-contructed posts arguing your points over the past couple of days. Then tonight, you turned into the bastard son of Rob Dibble and Charlie Sheen. You made claims that were counter to the facts, and used those falsehoods to make personal attacks. Keep it up and the impact is that a lot of people here will start scrolling past ALL of your posts. You will become invisible here. That would be a shame because you actually can be an excellent contributor when you stick to the facts, instead of trying to stick it to everyone else.

  160. Tcostant - May 12, 2012 at 2:43 AM

    I love watching these guys, great win!

  161. rdexposfan - May 12, 2012 at 2:44 AM

    Amanda Comak ‏ @acomakHarper took his frustrations out on the wall, w a bat. Davey said the bat came back & hit him. May need a stitch or 2, may be out few days

  162. sjm308 - May 12, 2012 at 2:44 AM

    Totally off topic. I realize we have 4 more months but right now, the top 3 spots for the wild card in both leagues are occupied but teams from the AL and NL East. I guess my point is that both divisions are very very strong and they will continue to beat each other up during the season.

  163. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 2:44 AM

    from Amanda on twitter:Amanda Comak‏@acomakHarper took his frustrations out on the wall, w a bat. Davey said the bat came back & hit him. May need a stitch or 2, may be out few days

  164. sjm308 - May 12, 2012 at 2:48 AM

    Sunshine is correct about Davey managing the bullpen. We have J Zimmnn tomorrow with Gorzo in place of Stammen and Clip and HRod available and fresh. Hope we don't need all that but it's nice to have that kind of talent ready.

  165. ehay2k - May 12, 2012 at 2:51 AM

    I fought the wall and the wall won!

  166. Scott from Burke - May 12, 2012 at 2:59 AM

    MicheleS said… was a little suprised the team forfeited. You can't compete against girls on the field? What century are we living in? when was the bible written? it's absurd people follow that thing…a bunch of fiction people use as a ctutchgood for the little girl for wanting to play..i saw a interview with the little girl bit nothing from the young players who had to forfeit…wonder how they feel?

  167. Scott from Burke - May 12, 2012 at 2:59 AM

    crutch

  168. Doc - May 12, 2012 at 3:02 AM

    Goodness what a win!G'night Davey.

  169. baseballswami - May 12, 2012 at 3:06 AM

    I think maybe this is a good time for Bryce to watch a few games anyway. He is "pressing". Nice win, but not a typical nats game. Early runs – I still think something is up with Gio, seems like bases were loaded a few times. It felt closer than the final score looks.

  170. NatsLady - May 12, 2012 at 3:08 AM

    Yeah, they miss Jayson. Big time.Harper took his frustrations out on the wall, w a bat. Davey said the bat came back & hit him. May need a stitch or 2, may be out few daysnick-johnson-homers-steals-base-retains-limbshttp://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2012/05/11/nick-johnson-homers-steals-base-retains-limbs/

  171. baseballswami - May 12, 2012 at 3:10 AM

    Twitter report says TEN stitches! That is no small little cut. He should probably be checked for a concussion. I know big-leaguers throw things all the times, but this just feels teenager-ish. Oh, Bryce.

  172. NatsLady - May 12, 2012 at 3:11 AM

    Yes, something not quite right with Gio, seems like he deliberately struck out twice (missed bunt w/ two strikes). Threw a lot of fastballs, only threw the famous curve a few times.

  173. NatsLady - May 12, 2012 at 3:13 AM

    Yeah, big leaguers do throw stuff. Eric Hinske got tossed after arguing a 3rd strike and spiked his bat. That'll be a $$fine. Braves and Cards tied, this could go for 17.

  174. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 12, 2012 at 3:13 AM

    I noticed something while at the game last Saturday when Gio pitched. In his second at-bat, he seemed to pull a leg muscle while running to first. He stayed in the game. I didn't think much of it until tonight. He clearly was not 100 percent. I just hope whatever is wrong doesn't affect his arm.

  175. NatsLady - May 12, 2012 at 3:16 AM

    From Amanda and Kilgore on Twitter:Line of the night goes to Ian Desmond, who said "It's not Bryce. From now on he's Bam Bam."

  176. NatsLady - May 12, 2012 at 3:17 AM

    Sunshine, yes, Gio DEFINITELY did not want to run the bases.

  177. baseballswami - May 12, 2012 at 3:23 AM

    Someone posted earlier that they saw him wearing a brace on his right hand. Not one reporter asked dj if Gio was physically ok. Fishy.

  178. baseballswami - May 12, 2012 at 3:23 AM

    Someone posted earlier that they saw him wearing a brace on his right hand. Not one reporter asked dj if Gio was physically ok. Fishy.

  179. NatsLady - May 12, 2012 at 3:29 AM

    I think he wears the brace when hitting because his pitching arm is exposed. Normally LH pitchers are not encouraged to bat RH for that reason, but some do (including Gio). I posted the question to Amanda on Twitter.

  180. JaneB - May 12, 2012 at 3:32 AM

    BamBam. Funny.He may regret having cut off the rat tail, though.

  181. sjm308 - May 12, 2012 at 3:43 AM

    Swami – not sure if its the same brace but the one I saw tonight was your typical armor that lots of hitters use now days. It was up around his forearm and covering his elbow. Makes sense since its his throwing arm that does the leading when he swings.

  182. Fear and Ignorance - May 12, 2012 at 3:58 AM

    The brace/wrap/cast-type thing that I saw Gio wearing in the players' parking lot after Sunday night's game was on his right hand/wrist. I am guessing they are keeping this quiet for a reason. Hopefully just a sprained wrist or something that made it painful to swing the bat. Might have done it on that awkward slide on Sat. He didn't have it on at all tonight, so can't be too serious.

  183. NatsLady - May 12, 2012 at 4:07 AM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  184. NatsLady - May 12, 2012 at 4:09 AM

    Davey's assessment of Harper vs. Bat:"The equipment is supposed to take the brunt of it. We’ll address that."You tell'em, Davey. That bat was NOT doing its job!

  185. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 12, 2012 at 4:56 AM

    Alumni News: Livo picks up his first career win in relief as Braves keep pace. Nats still in soul possession of first place in NL East.

  186. FS=Faraz Shaikh - May 12, 2012 at 4:59 AM

    Ryan needs to be less adventurous on basepaths.

  187. Drew - May 12, 2012 at 5:26 AM

    The LaRoche situation gets more intriguing by the day. For many moons I assumed the Nats would deal him at the break and move Morse back to first, leaving Harper and Werth on the corners and opening cf for Speedy McLeadoff.Now LaRoche could well be on the move at the break –to the All Star Game.I'm intrigued about keeping LaRoche and Morse for 2013, but it raises the age-old question. Who leads off?

  188. peric - May 12, 2012 at 5:39 AM

    Davey Johnson has reserved first base for laRoche, Marrero, or Moore … and now he has to be intrigued by Matt Skole as many of us are. And that's why he was adamant about Morse in left field.So … are we going to start bellyaching and whining about all the strikeouts and the low batting average Harper has? Ignoring his ratio of extra base hits to total hits? STOP blaming Espinosa. STOP blaming Gorzelanny. STOP blaming HRod. They are now consistent winners. Using most in house developed prospects with a small mix of free agents. They lose Werth and now Bernadina is showing he has talent. Let the Player Development folks starting with Davey Johnson do their jobs STOP trying to convince us that we need players at the end of their careers who are geezing because I will call you on it and make you look like a fool.

  189. That old-school, prestigious way of Scooter - May 12, 2012 at 5:48 AM

    Well, I guess the good news about BamBam hitting the wall is, he finally made good contact with something.Not sure why he cut off the tail thing — he's still a padawan, isn't he?

  190. peric - May 12, 2012 at 5:51 AM

    Then tonight, you turned into the bastard son of Rob Dibble and Charlie Sheen. You made claims that were counter to the facts, and used those falsehoods to make personal attacks. Ignoring the fact I am likely the reason Dibble turned a gun to his head by threatening fans. Yeah it was me. Believe me. I'd be happy to meet Dibble in a dark alley and show he and his tattoos what it means to be "tough". Hear that Dibble? That BS he spewed about Strasburg and any prospect is just plain f%cked. As Rizzo said "fake tough". C'mon Dibble I haven't got any tattoos and I'm in your neighborhood from time-to-time. Let's find out how you fare against someone from some of the nastiest neighborhoods of Syracuse. And he was in favor of beaning 19 year old Harper? Someone needs to crush Dibble like the pathetic flea he is. He'd chicken out I guarantee you … heck Rizzo could take him with one hand tied behind his back. Again, I have been here for YEARS! You haven't so you don't really know what transpired before now do you? They aren't lies because if there's one thing I am its honest. And I can prove it.

  191. Bzl. - May 12, 2012 at 8:48 AM

    Nats lady, that Craig Calcaterra guy on MSNBC is a riot. Love reading his stuff for the comedic aspect (and his insights and repoorting). Glad Nick J is alive and (still) well, even if it is in Baltimore.BamBam did his best (and last I hope) Amar'e Stoudamire imitation. He can't stay out of the headlines!

  192. natsfan1a - May 12, 2012 at 10:29 AM

    waitaminute – maybe they *do* read fan comments. I'm not saying, I'm just saying. :-) From a nickname discussion last week:natsfan1a said… hmmm…his initials are B.A.M. Harper. I'm just saying… May 04, 2012 9:24 AM JaneB said… BamBam! Nice.Part of me thinks he is too good to have a nickname. But whatever he gets called, I am gkad he is ours. May 04, 2012 9:38 AM Soul Possession, My PFB Hitterish Sofa said… Wasn't Hensley Meulens called "Bam-Bam"? May 04, 2012 9:41 AM

  193. The Great Unwashed - May 12, 2012 at 10:57 AM

    Scott From Burke said…"when was the bible written? it's absurd people follow that thing…a bunch of fiction people use as a ctutch"Look Scott, I get it. You're an athiest. But this is a blog about baseball, not religion. I don't even get what point you're trying to make with that idiotic statement but you've just offended half the people reading this blog, including me. I'm really beginning to wonder if you and peric are the same person. Get over yourself.

  194. MicheleS - May 12, 2012 at 11:02 AM

    1A.. I thought the same thing about Bam Bam! Hi Ian!!!! Hi Bryce!!!!

  195. natsfan1a - May 12, 2012 at 11:07 AM

    Hi, Davey! Confidential to Bryce: my husband said that you're supposed to hit the water cooler, not the wall. You're welcome. :-)

  196. Dryw Loves the Nats - May 12, 2012 at 11:11 AM

    Does anyone else think that 20-12 just looks nice?

  197. NatsLady - May 12, 2012 at 11:40 AM

    You have to read this note Axford left for the media after he blew his first save in 49 yes 49 opportunities!Notehttp://mlb.mlb.com/cutfour/article.jsp?content_id=31026802

  198. FS=Faraz Shaikh - May 12, 2012 at 11:44 AM

    it looks awesome but we gotta keep it going. I never want to see Nats lose again.btw Nats are supposed to play couple more on ESPN Sunday Night this season, right?

  199. baseballswami - May 12, 2012 at 11:45 AM

    when I see 20-12 I have to rub my eyes a little. And I wish Ryan would be more careful running the bases. Bam Bam is going to take so much ribbing for this that he will learn his lesson.He hates not playing .

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 57 46 --
ATLANTA 58 48 0.5
MIAMI 52 53 6.0
NEW YORK 51 55 7.5
PHILADELPHIA 46 60 12.5
Through Monday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
TUE: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
WED: Nats at Marlins, 12:40 p.m.
THU: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
FRI: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SUN: Phillies at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
MON: Orioles at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
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

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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.

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