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Strasburg, Nats get back on track

Jun 3, 2012, 1:48 AM EDT

US Presswire photo
Stephen Strasburg tossed seven scoreless innings, striking out nine.

No issues with misplaced Hot Stuff. No biceps tightness or general fatigue. No struggles with fastball command.

No, Stephen Strasburg took the mound Saturday at Nationals Park, struck out the side in the top of the first and then over seven shutout innings put to rest any of the questions that may have been hovering over him for the last two weeks.

And thanks to Jesus Flores’ solo homer and Xavier Nady’s pinch-hit double, the Nationals pulled off a 2-0 victory over the Braves before a sellout crowd of 41,042 to maintain their standing all alone at the top of the NL East.

Rich Dubroff has the full game story on CSNwashington.com, and he’s also got updates on Brad Lidge, who is set to begin a rehab assignment Monday and Wilson Ramos, who already had surgery to repair torn meniscus in his right knee but is still waiting for surgery to repair his torn ACL.

  1. jeffwx - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:57 AM

    Very clean game…was in sect 135 next to the guy with the crazy hats. A defensive masterpiece with Stras dominance, Zimm's 2 remarkable plays at third and and two 643 DPs, clips save…kind of a yawner as we seemed to control the whole game.Maybe, I miss the excitement and uncertainty that HROD used to give us before the clippard days. Maybe, i'd better be careful for what I wish for.

  2. Faraz Shaikh - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:05 AM

    yeah please be careful what you wish for.

  3. peric - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:29 AM

    yeah please be careful what you wish for.True dat. Agreeing with Luke Erickson on this one. One closer makes no sense. Two, one right handed and one left-handed is both the Orioles way and the Old school Nats way: see Darrold Knowles and Horacio Pena. Pete Richert and Eddie Watt. Davey knows this well. Its why some of his moves are confusing to the less informed fan.

  4. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 3:32 AM

    I know Morse didn't get a storybook hit today, but he made contact, didn't whiff. This was one tough pitcher, too. You will notice, that while Beachy fooled many of our more experienced hitters, Bryce managed to get a hit and made the guy throw lots and lots of pitches. Is he really 19? All those pitches he forced Beachy to throw don't show up in the boxscore, but those at bats are important. Go, Go, Gio!!

  5. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 3, 2012 at 3:37 AM

    Was in section 313. Bryce made Beachy work. 8 pitches the first at bat 11 in second one. got a hit the third one. He plays more like the one with experience than most of the others.

  6. That old-school, prestigious way of Scooter - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:03 AM

    The kid's great, idnee?

  7. Drew - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:06 AM

    Speaking of fine pitching performances, there was some good news down on the farm.Danny Rosenbaum bounced back nicely. He allowed 2 earned over 7.2 innings and upped his record to 7-1 with a 1.75 ERA.In Hagerstown, big Alex Meyer threw five scoreless innings in the nightcap, dropping his ERA to 3.71 and improving his record to 4-3. His ERA is skewed by one bad start in April. This is the fourth straight start in which Meyer has gone five innings and allowed either 0 or 1 earned runs.Also in Hagerstown, the rabbits atop the order continue to scamper. Brian Goodwin's on base percentage is .414 and Billy Burns' is .430.

  8. rabbit34 - Jun 3, 2012 at 10:00 AM

    To Swami…..that's exactly what I was thinking when Morse grounded out for the fourth time. At least he's making contact. With contact there's a chance for anything to happen. No contact…you get nothing.

  9. zregime - Jun 3, 2012 at 11:05 AM

    That's what I love about this ballclub…Resiliency Through Pitching! Wife and me are up in Prince Edward Island on vacay so didn't see the game but flew the colors with the Strasbourg 37 just the same. Does anyone else feel like Gio has a no-no in him? Let's go Natties!!!

  10. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2012 at 11:35 AM

    I think Stras, Gio and JZim all have the stuff to do it! EJAX already did – with about 8 walks — but Johan had lots of walks, too. You want to talk driving pitch count up? Walks will do it every time. Any word on Johan being pushed back? I actually wouldn't mind us facing him this week as he is probably pretty spent.

  11. sjm308 - Jun 3, 2012 at 11:47 AM

    Back in 308 for the first time since 5/5!!(silly vacations are ruining my baseball habit).Great game, crowd was late arriving but it really was packed. Loved the Zimm play on Bourne and was impressed with how we shut down a very good Braves line-up. No flu, no eye irritation, just good pitching beat them today. Nady's hit was clutch and maybe he will rise to what Tracy had been doing. I had marked both Espy and Flores as runs scored and when I looked up and saw Jesus on 3rd I was puzzled. I am guessing he didn't want to test that hamstring.Did anyone else have a problem with the wild pitch going into the dugout and we only got one base for each runner? I thought it was the base you were going to and one more? Negtives -I thought the ushers were going to stop fans (or non-fans actually) from coming down during at bats! Hate to rant but one guy in our section almost got into a situation with a young couple who was standing right in his way. I realize it was a sellout but I am guessing 20 or 30 times we had people moving in and out of rows during the action. I would not be upset if the nats hadn't publicized they were putting a stop to this.This is not huge but the damn wave is back and I have to admit, watching from up in 308 it was impressive to see a sold out lower bowl rising up in waves. Problem is, I hate the wave and how can they be watching the game when this is going on. I kept most of 308 grounded and after a couple of rounds, it died out.I realize this won't be a sweep today with the rainout but it will be another series win. Go Nats!!!

  12. sjm308 - Jun 3, 2012 at 11:51 AM

    Drew – thanks so much for the minor league updates. We have a terrific site over at Nationals Prospects but I like you including them here as well. Can't wait to see what direction Rizzo goes this year and our scouts will have to really earn their keep with the new CBA and our position in the draft. Maybe next year we will be picking 29th or 30th!!!Go Nats!

  13. Brother Juniper - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:06 PM

    Was it the extra day of rest for Strasburg? I hope not.

  14. MicheleS - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:08 PM

    Late arriving crowd.. Blame the traffic jam on 395.. It took me an hour to go from 395/66 to the game. The Soccer game at RFK was the culprit. (Which is why I didn't make it to Justin's -sigh..)On the lower bowl, there were enforcing the no moving down the aisle when a batter is up.

  15. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:22 PM

    Thanks for the reports from the stands re. fan movement. Was wondering how the enforcement would go, particularly with such a full house, and on tv I saw a fair number of fans moving about during at-bats.sjm, I believe the passage below, from the MLB official rules, #7.05, applied in that instance. (btw, I read last night that McCann had a bruise above his knee and might play today depending on whether swelling had gone down.)"Each runner including the batter-runner may, without liability to be put out, advance –(h) One base, if a ball, pitched to the batter, or thrown by the pitcher from his position on the pitcher's plate to a base to catch a runner, goes into a stand or a bench, or over or through a field fence or backstop. The ball is dead;APPROVED RULING: When a wild pitch or passed ball goes through or by the catcher, or deflects off the catcher, and goes directly into the dugout, stands, above the break, or any area where the ball is dead, the awarding of bases shall be one base. One base shall also be awarded if the pitcher while in contact with the rubber, throws to a base, and the throw goes directly into the stands or into any area where the ball is dead.If, however, the pitched or thrown ball goes through or by the catcher or through the fielder, and remains on the playing field, and is subsequently kicked or deflected into the dugout, stands or other area where the ball is dead, the awarding of bases shall be two bases from position of runners at the time of the pitch or throw."

  16. Another_Sam - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:22 PM

    Jeffwx – I was in 136; fortunatly the guy with the crazy hats was one section away from us. LOLNow for my rant that I offer every time I sit in the outfield sections: What's up with the scoreboards. [Again] Every time there's a pause in the action and one might want to actually look at the various auxillary scoreboards, all that's there is the dancing curly W's and the dancing Geico logs. Miserable.

  17. Another_Sam - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:24 PM

    Inspite of the rant, this was indeed another dandy game.

  18. Natslifer - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:32 PM

    Does anyone else read that rule and think of Monty Python's reading of the "Holy Hand Grenade"???

  19. A DC Wonk - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:41 PM

    I think I did read that Johan was going to get pushed back a day or two because of the 135 or so pitches he threw.FWIW

  20. upperdeck4 - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:41 PM

    Re: Movement. I sure wish that they'd enforce the "no movement zone" up here in 306. People were moving in and out during the action. It was a distraction, food and drink being more important than the game.

  21. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:42 PM

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  22. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:44 PM

    Speaking of rules, and given that the Nats have at least one double-header in their future, armchair GM types may find this item re. a 26-man roster loophole interesting.

  23. fast eddie - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:48 PM

    Here's a comment from the Atlanta announcer when we were ahead 1-0: "Don't worry about the Braves–remember, these are the Montreal Expos".These guys need to face reality: it ain't 2002 anymore!

  24. Another_Sam - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:51 PM

    Regarding fan no movement durng an at bat: this ain't golf or tennis. IMHO.

  25. MicheleS - Jun 3, 2012 at 12:56 PM

    1A.. bringing it with the knowledge.. Thanks for the rule on the dead ball/runner advance. There was a Nats fan in 134 sitting in front of me who was having a cow about not letting Flores score on that. I knew there had to be a reason..Also, sounds like the Nats Insiders had that right field corner well represented (133/134/135/136)!!!!

  26. sjm308 - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:00 PM

    Sam, I am not upset about people making noise or moving during play, but when I want to see a key pitch and my view of the batter is totally blocked by people its frustrating. Its not the movement, its that they are blocking the view of many many fans who are actually there to watch baseball, not get trays of nachos.

  27. sjm308 - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:01 PM

    MicheleS – no soccer game tuesday right???

  28. The Retired Journalist - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:01 PM

    fast eddie said… Here's a comment from the Atlanta announcer when we were ahead 1-0: "Don't worry about the Braves–remember, these are the Montreal Expos". These guys need to face reality: it ain't 2002 anymore! June 03, 2012 8:48 AM ———————————–Regarding reality check needed by Bravos broadcaster: these ain't the Montreal Expos anymore, and they ain't got Glavine, Smoltz and Maddux on the mound anymore either.

  29. DWS - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:02 PM

    Great game and zregime enjoy the Island. I'll be on the lookout for a Nats fan.

  30. Another_Sam - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:27 PM

    308 – I'm with you. I know what you mean. It's just that this pot has a hard time calling anykettles black on the blocking the view topic. When a vendor comes by, I'll call for a round of brew without much regard for the views of those around me. LOL. Actually I'm so delighted to see fans of any level of interest in the park I find it hard to knock 'em.

  31. Gonat - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:32 PM

    fast eddie said… Here's a comment from the Atlanta announcer when we were ahead 1-0: "Don't worry about the Braves–remember, these are the Montreal Expos".These guys need to face reality: it ain't 2002 anymore! June 03, 2012 8:48 AM _____________________________Wow, that sounds like what a disgruntled fan says. Tell the dope Bryce Harper was in 4th grade in 2002.

  32. Another_Sam - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:34 PM

    Actually, 308, I was being mostly facetious, as you likely surmise. I'm annoyed when the entire row in front of me stands durng the action to let one guy with five trays of nachos get in and pass the food out. I'm sympathetic to your view but I know I'm no angel in this arena. And these standing guys bought a ticket too.

  33. Joe Seamhead - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:41 PM

    sjm308, great post/report on the game and stadium. As far as people getting up and such during the action, I find it mostly to be mildly annoying, except if I'm sitting near an aisle and the rest of the row is a bunch of drinkers that have to get up seemingly every inning. Our seats are in the middle of the row and it has its advanatages. As to the wave, I hate it at baseball games, especially close games. It's worse then people moving in the aisles to me. I know people are having fun with it, but take over to Fed Ex Field, will ya?Regarding yesterday's game: First off, Welcome back, Beast! Nice to have his threat in the line up and his damage will be done.Secondly, this game was Strasburg. I felt like he definately crossed a line in his recovery from his TJ surgery yesterday in that he got his total command back. I would be very nervous, even more then before, if my team had to face him now.There's a "feel," or confidence that is elusive for awhile for a player after coming back, and as good as Stras has been so far, I truly believe that he will be even better now. Now if we can Wang past that magic moment. I really think CMW is still scared of himself out there.[So is Hrod, but that's another story!]

  34. Another_Sam - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:52 PM

    Seamhead — the game yeterday turned a corner for me too. I imputed such confidence with Clippard when he ran by our section to take the mound to close. Nice to experience that. And right on with the wave. I don't have much tolerance for the wave or for for the wavers.

  35. Joe Seamhead - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:54 PM

    Man, I wish I could edit after I post with my sloppy mistakes. I meant to say: Now, if we can get Wang past that magic moment.Also: but take it over to Fed Ex Field, will ya?

  36. pRAA - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:56 PM

    "If, however, the pitched or thrown ball goes through or by the catcher or through the fielder, and remains on the playing field, and is subsequently kicked or deflected into the dugout, stands or other area where the ball is dead, the awarding of bases shall be two bases from position of runners at the time of the pitch or throw."Seeing as how the pitch was thrown in the general direction of the batter-catcher-umpire group, and seeing as how the dugout/photographers well is well off to the side of that group, it would seem that the ball would have had to deflect off something in order to end up where it did, wouldn't it? It wasn't a Matt Chico pitch directly into the stands. Perhaps Davey should have argued this one a bit more.

  37. Joe Seamhead - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:57 PM

    Sam, Clippard is in a zone right now. You could put him in at any point and feel confident that he will come through for you.

  38. pRAA - Jun 3, 2012 at 1:58 PM

    I meant to say: Now, if we can get Wang past that magic moment.Hey there. And I thought this was supposed to be a family blog…

  39. Theophilus T. S. - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:03 PM

    Joe is correct about Clippard "in a zone." His change-up was better last night than I recall at any time previously this season. He could go a month without giving up a run.

  40. Joe Seamhead - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:04 PM

    pRAA said: "Perhaps Davey should have argued this one a bit more."Johnson has been very understated in argueing with the umps since he took over. Maturity/experience? Inner calmness? Gaining respect from the umps so as when he does get loud with them at some point he will be taken seriously? I think DJ has become a very sly fox in his dealing with Blue.

  41. Joe Seamhead - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:06 PM

    Let it go, pRAA…

  42. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:12 PM

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  43. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:13 PM

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  44. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:14 PM

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  45. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:17 PM

    I figured that's what you meant on Fed Ex, Joe. fwiw, in the absence of an editing function, I think some opt to repost with correction(s) and delete the old post.pRAA, yes, it did deflect off the catcher. How/when that occurred is what makes the difference, the way I read it. "When a wild pitch or passed ball goes through or by the catcher, or deflects off the catcher, and goes directly into the dugout, stands, above the break, or any area where the ball is dead, the awarding of bases shall be one base. One base shall also be awarded if the pitcher while in contact with the rubber, throws to a base, and the throw goes directly into the stands or into any area where the ball is dead."So it sounds like if the ball deflects directly off the catcher, it's one base. If the ball goes through the catcher and remains on the field, then is deflected (as in the quote you pulled), it's two bases.On another note, Balkin' Bob is in the news again.

  46. Candide - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:26 PM

    Regarding blocking the view: Game we were at recently, a beer vendor was blocking my view, about 8-10 feet in front of me. He noticed me leaning way over to see around him, and immediately crouched down until the next pitch, so I could see. Whoever you are, Mister Beer Stud in section 219, props to you, sir!

  47. carolync - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    I expect to see one of our pitchers start the All-Star game and at this point think it might be Gio. I wonder if they would select two starting pitchers from the same team. I also expect LaRussa to select Harper because he's playing like the phenom he is and we might get Clip again.Don't think anyone else has a chance. Our position players are either injured or not hitting worth beans.Will be at the game today hoping for a mini-sweep.Go Nats!

  48. jeffwx - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:46 PM

    I visited Fenway Park last summer while on a baseball tour. Fans and venders are only allowed to go up/down aisles between 1/2 innings, applause and chants are always initiated by fans without the help of modern technological audio/visual props and babies sleep quietly in their mom's laps until the last pitch… a den of civility in an otherwise tough town.Also no guys with crazy hats running up and down the row knocking over my friend's binocs after a homerun.

  49. jeffwx - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:47 PM

    I don't like sitting next to guys with crazy hats and scary dance moves. Is it me…Maybe I'm too old for you kids.

  50. jeffwx - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:51 PM

    And in other civilized worlds, they don't do track maintainance on a Saturday afternoon when the home team is in town. I encourage the use of mass transit to ease traffic but it would be nice for transit to ease use for the masses.

  51. SonnyG10 - Jun 3, 2012 at 2:56 PM

    Put me down as one who does not like the wave either. I noticed when we were on the road trip in Atlanta, the Braves fans were doing the wave also, so its not just our fans.

  52. Wendell - Jun 3, 2012 at 3:14 PM

    Was the wave generated by Terrence or was it spontaneous? From where I was sitting I could not tell. It did look as if it distracted Burnett.BTW, was it my advanced age or was this one of the youngest (mostly 20 something) crowd in memory. Perhaps the concert played a factor.

  53. Joe Seamhead - Jun 3, 2012 at 3:19 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  54. Joe Seamhead - Jun 3, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    Joe Seamhead said…My adult son says I'm just an old curmudgeon when I told him that I detested the wave at baseball games.Poppycock, I say, poppycock. I wanna see the game, and there's a Nats pitcher trying to hit a very precise spot with a baseball from 60 feet away. Not one distraction is a good distraction. I do admit to being a Grumpy Old Man of Baseball however.June 03, 2012 11:19 AM

  55. carolync - Jun 3, 2012 at 3:35 PM

    RFK was better suited for the wave. It just doesn't have the same OOMPH in Nats Park. Our whole section just ignores it so there's never anyone jumping up in front of us.

  56. erocks33 - Jun 3, 2012 at 3:58 PM

    while watching the Tigers/BoSox game on TV the other night, I noticed the wave was going on in the stands. I just about cried seeing that happen in Fenway. Stop the insanity!!

  57. sjm308 - Jun 3, 2012 at 4:09 PM

    Seamhead – where can I join up?? I love it, the grumpy old men of baseball!! I am already called grumpa by my family. Its a natural I tell ya.OK, I am really going to get hammered for this and I will probably repost when Mark gets his game story running.Everyone had to notice the huge difference in Strasburg. I realize its a minute sample size but you can't tell me the extra day of rest did not help him. I have asked about a 6 man rotation before and I know, I know, its just not done, it affects the other 5 pitchers etc etc.This is apples to oranges but when I started coaching swimming in 1969 (last mens ACC championship for Md. I might add), weight training was thought of as just for body builders. It would harm flexibility, create unwanted mass and it was looked upon by coaches as a negative. It took some "out of the box" originality (James Councilman of Indiana U. for one) to suggest that there was a place for it in our sport. Now, everyone does dryland training of some sort or another and its routine.We have 6 starting pitchers. Why couldn't Davey or McCatty get them together, tell them what is going to happen and adjust their off days so it works to our advantage? Just wondering how people thought when there started to be a dedicated closer? Now thats a norm. OK, blast away people but SS would last longer into the regular season and we would also allow Wang more rest between starts as well as Detwiler and look how well he did last year with extended rest. Go Nats!!

  58. pRAA - Jun 3, 2012 at 4:44 PM

    We have 6 starting pitchers. Why couldn't Davey or McCatty get them together, tell them what is going to happen and adjust their off days so it works to our advantage? Just wondering how people thought when there started to be a dedicated closer? Now thats a norm. If they went to a six-man rotation, every starter's workload would have to be cut, not just Strasburg's. There is no need to cut Jackson's, Gio's or Zimmerman's workloads. Detwiler's and CMW's, maybe. And if you start jiggering around with the rotation in order to stretch out Stras, Det and/or CMW, doing so will inevitably mess up the rhythm of Gio, Jax and JZim. Starting pitchers are creatures of regularity. Pitch, throw a bullpen a couple days later, then pitch again on the fifth day. They live by that.Look, if it ain't broke, don't fix it. And this ain't broke.

  59. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 3, 2012 at 4:51 PM

    sjm308…..what's your preference, sledge or baalpin?

  60. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 3, 2012 at 4:51 PM

    ball pin

  61. natsfan1a - Jun 3, 2012 at 5:26 PM

    I like the ball-peen myself. :-)

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