Skip to content

Game 52: Braves at Nats

Jun 3, 2012, 4:47 PM EDT

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Gio Gonzalez goes for his eighth win of the season today at Nationals Park.

How rare is it for a Nationals pitcher to be shooting for his eighth victory so early in a season? Well, if Gio Gonzalez does it today, he'll record win No. 8 faster than any previous Nats hurler has done it … except for one. Yes, Livan Hernandez was 8-2 on May 29, 2005 en route to an All-Star selection later that summer.

Gonzalez already dominated this Braves lineup lineup six days ago, allowing just one hit in seven innings. He'll look to pick up where he left off on Sunday Night Baseball.

Tommy Hanson, meanwhile, makes his first start of the year against the Nationals. They did beat the right-hander twice in three outings last season.

Plenty of updates to come on a beautiful afternoon from the ballpark, so please check back…

ATLANTA BRAVES at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 1:35 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, Ch. 50, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), XM 185
Weather: Partly cloudy, 77 degrees, Wind 11 mph out to RF

NATIONALS (30-21)
LF Steve Lombardozzi
CF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche

Read more ยป

  1. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 4:52 PM

    In 2005 the Nats had a pretty good season. However – that team was not built to last and the National League East was certainly not the beast it is today. I appreciate Livo's place in Nats history – but this is truly a totally different time and place. Apples and Oranges.

  2. UnkyD - Jun 3, 2012 at 4:52 PM

    Here I am!!! Sec 138….

  3. Big Daddy Goob - Jun 3, 2012 at 4:59 PM

    I was wondering where clippard stood after his many wins in 2010, but he didn't get number 8 until June 4

  4. Big Daddy Goob - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:00 PM

    I was wondering where clippard stood after his many wins in 2010, but he didn't get number 8 until June 4

  5. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:30 PM

    From a stats standpoint, shooting for your 8th win is shooting for your 8th win, so it seems like apples to me, but what do I know? (That's rhetorical, btw.) :-)clap-clap-clap-clap-clapclap-clap-clap-clap- GIO!!Go, GIO! Go, NATS!!

  6. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:33 PM

    On the update: That's great news re. the awards. Two in one month when in the past we were lucky to get one in a season. Congrats to Gio and Bryce. That's pretty Old School, for a rookie. :-)

  7. Faraz Shaikh - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:38 PM

    Yay great to hear about GG and Harper.

  8. Smatt1001 - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:46 PM

    And a lead off bomb for Lombo!

  9. Smatt1001 - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:47 PM

    Back to back for Harper!

  10. MicheleS - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:47 PM

    LOMBO'S FIRST HOMER! AND NOW BAM BAM!

  11. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:48 PM

    If you blinked you missed some back to back Jacks!

  12. Joe Seamhead - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:50 PM

    In deference to Mark's request:HECK YEAH!

  13. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:52 PM

    Tommy Hanson looked shaken on the mound after Harper's smackem yackem. Hitting is contagious and then Zim rolls one over. Oh well, definitely will take 2 in the first. Nats scored that over 9 innings yesterday!!!!

  14. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:59 PM

    Lucky on that double that it was a slow catcher on 1st base.

  15. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:59 PM

    Has that ever happened before? One and two, both rookies back to back to start a game? That was awesome!!!!!

  16. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:01 PM

    Shutout perserved thanks to a .071 pitcher up with 2 RISP and 2 outs.

  17. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:03 PM

    baseballswami, great question as that could be a record and if not would definitely tie a record. I know back-to-back-to-back HRs to start a game has only been done 4 times in MLB history. If Zim hit one it would have tied that record.

  18. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:04 PM

    and as I finish writing that Bob and FP just discussed if that set a Lombo/Harp back-to-back jacks to start a game as Rookies set a record.

  19. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:10 PM

    I like the straight sacrifice with no outs but I don't like a straight sacrifice in a 1 out situation with a man on 3rd and the pitcher up. Put it in a play. The straight sacrifice only moved the runner to 2nd and then you have 1 shot with 2 out.

  20. hiramhover - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:13 PM

    So Lombo homers and Danny bunts for a hit.What a topsy turvy game….

  21. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:17 PM

    hiramhover, yah, one has a sweet swing and one has swing & miss mechanics. Any way Danny can get on batting LH is a good at-bat if he gets on 1st safely.

  22. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:18 PM

    Desi! Saves a run there!

  23. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:19 PM

    You just can't keep Dan Uggla from hurting you for very long. Especially when you have to also go through Prado and Freeman. More offense, please.

  24. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:24 PM

    Zim fouls off the hanging slider and then rolls over a harmless grounder for a 6-3

  25. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:29 PM

    baseballswami said… You just can't keep Dan Uggla from hurting you for very long. Especially when you have to also go through Prado and Freeman. More offense, please. June 03, 2012 2:19 PM ____________________________Gio was very fortunate. The first pitch missed the location and Uggla swung thru it. Could easily be 2-2 right now.Strasburg pitched him perfectly yesterday.

  26. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:33 PM

    Can't walk Ross. The guy was 0-17 coming into the game and coming off of the muscle strain.

  27. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:40 PM

    Look at Danny. Great at-bat there. Almost had a double on the swing before that.

  28. rabbit34 - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:50 PM

    Nats are going to lose this game; they have too many holes in their lineup.

  29. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 3, 2012 at 6:56 PM

    Thanks rabbit. Now I can turn the game off and take a nap.

  30. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:00 PM

    Actually, if you can tell me who's going to win the Cards/Mets game tonite, I can forgo the nap.

  31. JaneB - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:02 PM

    What has happened to Gio? I am watching on the MLB in the airport. What is going wrong?

  32. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:02 PM

    maybe sjm is on to something about 6 starters? Gio jusy had one of those games today…. we alos need to score a few more

  33. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:03 PM

    Gio had Diaz ready for a K and couldn't put him away. A shame as that walk sets up the 2 run single by Heyward.

  34. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:03 PM

    we should still win this game, even though Zim is a ground ball machine and we will have to wit about 15 games for Morse to hit

  35. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:03 PM

    JaneB, too much nibbling and not enough strikes today.

  36. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:06 PM

    we are drawing over 40,000 now at home, we have to win these games

  37. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:07 PM

    why not 5 day rest for pitching staff, that way both Wang and detweiler can still start?

  38. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:07 PM

    How about they directly said that Gio was striking out too many guys and needed to pitch more to contact?Seems like right from the first inning they were making contact – and the balls were dropping. Did it mess with his head? How about we just let him strike people out? Very quick hook, though.

  39. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:08 PM

    agreed swami, you may be right

  40. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:10 PM

    glad to see Perry bye bye and why on earth would anyone want Coffey back here???

  41. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:13 PM

    why not send Bryce, Zimmerman is an automatic OUT anyway.

  42. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:14 PM

    Gio's worse inning as a Nat. Outh hsutled to first on a routuine grounder to first. 2 eild pitches (thought the last should have been called strike 3 ) ending the inning with no runs. 2 walks. Just bad pitching. Now no more bad pitching.

  43. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:14 PM

    Davey just needs to remind Bryce that the league has wised up to him. They are sprinting to balls instead of jogging. That's twice in a week being thrown out trying to take the extra base.

  44. rabbit34 - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:15 PM

    No better player in MLB than Harper. You're welcome NatsJack.

  45. JaneB - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:15 PM

    Thanks gonat.I am just leaving a conference where I heard a report on research showing fan influence on baseball games. A topic in the q&A, not even asked by me, was whether teams like the Nationals were getting more fans as a result if being better or were better as a result of getting more fans. No conclusion. But I did make myself known as a Nats fan and several people shook my hand as the first one they'd ever met. I'm glad to read that Zimm had similar stats last year because I was starting to worry. Less so now. But man do I want us to win today.

  46. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:16 PM

    Talk about bad luck. the ball thrown to Prado takes a bad bounce he still catches it, though it appeared to me the foor was on the bag. The Nats in general do not get as good a bounces as their oppoents do. Though maybe that is my rose colored glasses look at it.

  47. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:16 PM

    Gonat, or Davey needs to remind Bo Porter not to go stupid as a coach. Porter sent him and that is all on Bo Porter.

  48. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:18 PM

    No wonder Bryce is trying to do so much — the 3, 4 and 5 spots have become desert wastelands.

  49. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:24 PM

    Come on hitters. Make good contact. Take away a few guys and they have basically stunk now for 5 games. It can't be they are tired.

  50. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:26 PM

    MNF – the Nats are actually getting quite a few days off right now, so you are correct about that. I almost think the beginning of this game set a bad tone because now every single hitter thinks he is going to come up and hit the first pitch out of the park. That inning was just ridiculous the way they got out so darn fast. Take a few pitches, eh? Make the guy work a little bit. Morse is making contact – talked his way back in to the major league line up after only a very few AB's — he will take a while to get his stroke back. But Zim and ALR? They need to pick it up.

  51. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:30 PM

    this is why I hope Rendon can be healthy which will force Zimmerman to play better. Zim's ground balls and DP's have gotten old

  52. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:30 PM

    It wouldn't bother me at all if Stammen got moved to the 5 spot in the rotation at some point later on in the season.

  53. Faraz Shaikh - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:42 PM

    I hope I am proved wrong but hanson is going 9 I think.

  54. SCNatsFan - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:52 PM

    Ankiel has quickly become a wasted roster spot unless you think you need a defensive replacement every night. He doesn't have the eye to pinch hit or spot start. Carrying him and Nady really hamstrings the bench.

  55. SCNatsFan - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:57 PM

    What a waste. This team needs to learn in a hurry how to put teams away.

  56. Drew - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:57 PM

    What a terrible at bat by Zim.

  57. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:58 PM

    The young guys are doing fine getting on, then Zim another double play. Then LaRoche flies out. You guys are the ones making the big money, produce like you are, the young ones not making nearly as much are doing their job.

  58. Fear and Ignorance - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:58 PM

    Ryan Zimmerman sucks!!! I have been telling everybody this for 6 months now. What an awful contract. Thanks Rizzo!!!

  59. peric - Jun 3, 2012 at 7:59 PM

    Zim still has issues with the shoulder. He should be batting sixth not 3rd or he should be on the DL.

  60. Another_Sam - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:00 PM

    RZ is the reincarated Cal Ripken in the last half of CR's career — leads the world in GIDP in key situations.

  61. Another_Sam - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:00 PM

    peric — i'm for moving him down in the order, or giving him a few days off.

  62. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:01 PM

    Frear and Ig : AGREED, totally over rated and a DP machine. I hope A. Rendon can make it and we can ship Ryan and his over paid contract somewhere else. I actually root for him to strike out if there is a man on first and one out or less.

  63. peric - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:01 PM

    Ryan Zimmerman sucks!!! I have been telling everybody this for 6 months now. What an awful contract. Thanks Rizzo!!!Still their best player bar none … its kind of hard to hit the way Zim hits with a bad shoulder. Statistically, there's no one else even close … not even Bryce Harper who is really just getting started.

  64. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:01 PM

    That — was — depressing :( The rookies are setting the table. Two runs yesterday wins it because Stras was almost perfect. Two runs today doesn't cut it. Gio gives up three – we all feel like he had a total meltdown out there. When other pitchers lose it they give up 8. Offense goes icy cold again. Zim and ALR looking pretty bad out there and Morse not quite back. 2,3 and 4 – sigh.

  65. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:01 PM

    Sorry – 3, 4 and 5

  66. Bigfish - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:01 PM

    Does anyone besides me think pitchers are having success throwing outside to RZim because he stands too damn far away from the plate?

  67. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:02 PM

    we are starting to sell out and we hit like STIFFS

  68. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:03 PM

    get Zim the hell outta here.. take all his BS stats and throw them out. All I know is he played on 2 back to back 100 loss teams and he does not hit when it counts, all those wlak off games he won were with crappy teams in seasons that we were out of it by June..

  69. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:04 PM

    Remember the good old days with the late inning, come-from-behind, clutch fireworks. I miss those games.

  70. peric - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:06 PM

    I hope A. Rendon can make it and we can ship Ryan and his over paid contract somewhere else. I any glove is replacing Zimmerman's at third base its going to be Espinosa's now that Lombardozzi looks ensconced in the lineup. Its his best position. Rendon with two bad ankles? Three surgeries ALREADY!? Fear, Ignorance and Mick is right … the FO is looking worse on the Rendon signing right now!!! Its why he dropped to them over his injury concerns! Should and both ankles now!! And now Zim has the shoulder from making web gems in April. I think most of us will be ecstatic just see him finish an entire season healthy at this point!Rendon looks like a second bagger or first bagger with those ankles. Could be another fragile player like Nick "the stick" Johnson.

  71. mick - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:06 PM

    peric,,, if he has a bad shoulder then Davey needs to tell us… put him o DL or have surgery… i am sick of everyone defending him… that AB was terrible

  72. SCNatsFan - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:15 PM

    I have no doubt Ryan is hurt. This team right now has alot of guys who need to look in the mirror and stop hoping someone else wins the game for us. And damn Kimbrell just hits corners.And damn the Braves announcers make every single player they have sound like Mantle or Cy Young. Such damn homers.

  73. Smatt1001 - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:16 PM

    Zimm needs to get this figured out either the shoulder's not right, he's pressing or both.Here's hoping another off day helps….

  74. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:18 PM

    Hitters 3 through 6 in these two games (and too many games lately) 1 for 32 or so. What is the problem guys?However that being said, this is the 4 lost in a row that we leading after our 4tth at bat, and the starter had he just held serve would get a win. Come on guys do not give up runs once we have the lead.

  75. peric - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:20 PM

    peric,,, if he has a bad shoulder then Davey needs to tell us… put him o DL or have surgery… i am sick of everyone defending him… that AB was terribleAnd Michael Morse didn't look pathetic? Meanwhile, Adam LaRoche is returning back to his mean. They are going to wait on Zim, as I've stated, to see if, with time the shoulder completely heals. Their patience isn't unlimited as we've already seen. I'm fairly sure that I DO NOT want Lombardozzi with that arm at third base. I don't think Teahen's bat is going to even come close to replacing Zims. Neither will his glove.As for the heart of the line up? Right now the contingency plans are in place. Tyler Moore is going to get time in right field (Morse). Corey Brown in CF (Harper), and Xavier Paul mostly in left with Mark Teahen (Lombardozzi) and he gets moved around the infield quite a bit as well. That's it. They aren't going to make a completely worthless trade at this point … not when the plan is finally working. Plus there is this year's draft. One in which the players must be signed in July and then they will get assigned to minor league affiliates. There's NO ONE out there until free agency next year. Wright and Longoria would be available but then they might have the same problems with them and they would have to trade Zim. Its not going to happen!

  76. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:21 PM

    I don't want to replace ZImm. I want him to do what he is paid to do.

  77. peric - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:24 PM

    Finally, have a care listening to Bill Ladson. He is never right in his personal "trade" predictions. However, sometimes his sources make flat-out here it is statements. When Bill posts those they are bland, terse, and to the point. When you start reading about Denard Span and other wild out there ideas Bill gets then you know he is stating what he, Bill the fan, would like to see.

  78. Another_Sam - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:28 PM

    Although I'm frustrated and annoyed by his highly visible lack of production, I'm not at all for giving up on RZ. A slump is a slump, and CR he's not. I say give him a week off, or put him down in the lineup, or both, and get him right. I agree with those who say that he's among the cream of this team.

  79. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 8:41 PM

    I'm with you on Zimm, Sam.

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 58 47 --
ATLANTA 58 49 1.0
MIAMI 53 54 6.0
NEW YORK 52 56 7.5
PHILADELPHIA 47 61 12.5
Through Wednesday's early games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
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.
TUE: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Mets 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

As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...

MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.

*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.

Follow us on Twitter