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Beltway Baseball – 7/19/12

Jul 19, 2012, 1:30 PM EDT

Can Ian Desmond make it through the season with his strained oblique? Can Jayson Werth make it back from his broken wrist? What, if anything, might the Nationals be looking for at the trade deadline?

We touched on all those subjects and more yesterday when CSNwashington.com’s Chase Hughes and the Washington Times’ Amanda Comak joined me for our latest edition of Beltway Baseball. We also answered the best of the questions you submitted here, including one directed at Chase.

Enjoy the show…

  1. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - Jul 19, 2012 at 1:54 PM

    Pretty cool you could get Orson Welles to direct the segment in the booth around the 6-10 minutes mark.

  2. baseballswami - Jul 19, 2012 at 1:56 PM

    Just heard on the radio that Ankiel was DFA'd? I really thought they might ditch Michael Gonzalez or send Tyler Moore down. Not against the move, just surprised because they have so much professional respect for me. Great guy, great arm, but not much else.

  3. baseballswami - Jul 19, 2012 at 1:56 PM

    For him, not me…

  4. Faraz Shaikh - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:00 PM

    it is his birthday today.

  5. UnkyD - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:03 PM

    Swami: what radio? Nothing on the wires, yet…

  6. Kirbs - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:05 PM

    I read on mlbtraderumor that there have been talks of a Bj Upton for the beast. Has anyone else seen/heard this?

  7. MicheleS - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:07 PM

    Dan Kolko‏@masnKolkoRick Ankiel's locker has been cleaned out. Nameplate taken down. Looks like he's been DFAd. #NatsAs sad goodbye to the ARM.

  8. JaneB - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:08 PM

    Wow. Ankiel news on Twitter. Unhappy birthday for him. My gratitude to him for some awesome hits and jaw dropping put outs.

  9. Oldguy - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:11 PM

    The Nationals will designate Rick Ankiel for assignment to create roster space for Drew Storen, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports (on Twitter). The move creates 25 and 40-man roster space for Storen, who's being activated from the disabled list after battling elbow soreness.

  10. Kirbs - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:13 PM

    Sad for Ankiel and he will certainly be missed (especially if I dare say in October). But Roger has been unbelievable off the bench. The question is, who claims him?

  11. JD - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:14 PM

    Rizzo never ceases to surprise me. I have to admit that this never crossed my mind although it does make some sense. Ankiel has barely played lately and Bernie has clearly passed him in Davie's pecking order and deservedly so. Ankiel will land somewhere but he needs to find a situation where he's only counted on for some late inning defense and a potential power bat off the bench. His role here last year and at the beginning of this year was too large for him to handle; he's just not a good enough hitter to play every day.

  12. JD - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    I also think that Mike Gonzalez has been much too effective to lose at this point. What this does is defer the decision for a while at least until after the trade deadline.

  13. Faraz Shaikh - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:17 PM

    I agree that he gets a job somewhere soon enough. best wishes to him. Won't forget that strike to ramos.

  14. JD - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:17 PM

    What I really mean is that when Werth returns they are likely to drop a pitcher.

  15. Tcostant - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:19 PM

    Rick Ankiel hasn't been used much lately, other some late defense. Tuesday I was them hit with Onion, when Ankiel would have hit in that spot just a few weeks ago. It makes sence, especially the way Bernie is hitting.

  16. Feel Wood - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:24 PM

    Dan Kolko‏@masnKolkoRick Ankiel's locker has been cleaned out. Nameplate taken down. Looks like he's been DFAd. #NatsNot a big surprise. As Tuesday night's game moved into the bottom of the 10th, some of the other guys in section 309 and I were talking about who Davey had left on the bench to pinch hit for Mattheus who was due up first. We threw out names, including Solano the backup catcher. None of us even thought of Ankiel, who was still sitting right there on the bench. Neither did Davey, who sent up Solano even though he wasn't sure he could even hit due to the oblique injury that we in the stands didn't even know about. Sometime after I got home, might have even been the next day, I heard Ankiel's name mentioned somewhere and realized we had forgotten all about him the night before. Then I said to myself, that's not a good sign.

  17. Tcostant - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:25 PM

    If all the pen pitches well the the next two weeks, a pen arm might just be traded for a prospect to make room for Werth. Don't discount that, because bullipen guys have a lot of value and you can't keep that many guys around and expect all to get work. Once Storen proves full use (back to back) then Rizzo will know that someone else in the pen can be dealt.

  18. SCNatsFan - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:28 PM

    Either Ankiel or Bernie had to go unless you think Moore needs to be sent back down. I think once Werth returns HRod or Gonzales will also be looking for somewhere new to live.

  19. JD - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:29 PM

    Tcostant, You are not kidding. Just ask the Mets how they feel about bullpen help. There have been blown saves all over the place. Kudos to Rizzo for having built this bullpen; it's a tremendous asset to have this time of year.

  20. JeffDC2004 - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:30 PM

    With Werth and Tracy likely coming back over the next few weeks, the GM and Davey will have some hard decisions to make. If only the Nats could keep their catchers healthy . . . .

  21. JD - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:33 PM

    SC, Moore isn't going back down and Henry isn't getting released. I think that things will straighten out with either unforeseen DL stints, trades etc.

  22. Feel Wood - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:34 PM

    The question is, who claims him?Possibly no one. Any team that claims him is going to have to cut, option or trade someone else to create space for him on their 25-man roster. He is what he is, and is there another team that would be making an upgrade by claiming him at the expense of losing or demoting a player they have now? The most likely scenario for Ankiel is the same one that Lidge went through. In ten days, he can decide if he wants to retire or sign back on as a minor leaguer. He gets paid either way.Expect this same scenario to play out soon with X. Nady. Possibly with C.M. Wang too.

  23. timeless46 - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    Best of luck to Ankiel. I hope someone picks him up soon. Its tough when you have to let go good people. Go Nats!

  24. SCNatsFan - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:38 PM

    I agree about Moore; HRod, I still think he's just a couple of implosions away from going away. I really hope he straightens out.

  25. NatsLady - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:41 PM

    Given that he is probably injured, I would guess he takes the rest of the season off–hopefully without the Lidge nastiness. At this point, putting him on the 60-day DL would have the same effect as the DFA; if I understand correctly he would not be eligible for playoffs. So the decision was 15-day DL or DFA, and with needing the roster spot, that was the decision.

  26. JD - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:43 PM

    SC, If it was me I would cut Henry loose but listening to Rizzo it doesn't sound like he's ready to give up just yet. Maybe he's hoping to get something back in a trade.

  27. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:45 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  28. #4 - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:48 PM

    This should be a boost of confidence for Moore and Bernadina. I love Davey's faith in the younger guys.I think Clip's issues will pass. I don't think he's tired or "worn-out". He hit 95 MPH several times last night – not the sign of a dead arm. His issue last night was his inability to locate his fastball. Ray Knight alluded to it in the post game. Both his pitch to Wright and the one to Bay were missed spots. The one to Wright was elevated. The one to Bay ran over the plate inside. He also couldn't get the ball in on the corner to the lefties, almost hitting Duda (I think). He'll get back in sync and be fine.Morse on the other hand still looks hurt to me. Not withstanding NJ's report from Miami that he was bombing balls off the sculpture, he appears to be having the same issues that Zim had pre-cortisone. He cannot stay through and drive a pitch on the outer half. The Mets are pounding him out there, and he appears helpless.Lastly, what is it with all the obliques? It makes you wonder whether the Nats' trainers are implementing some sort of lifting program that is contributing to the problem.

  29. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:53 PM

    I was going to mention that he's fairly cheap at $1.25M for the year, over half of which the Nats have already paid, but he also has performance bonuses, so to the approx. half of his base salary, let's round it to $600K still due, he would hit a $200K performance bonus with 29 more plate appearances, and likewise with each subsequent 50 PAs, so that starts to add up.

  30. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:55 PM

    #4, that's partly why I was wondering which oblique muscles they are injuring.

  31. Grandstander - Jul 19, 2012 at 2:59 PM

    This might have been something he wanted as well. IIRC, the primary reason he signed with the Nats was because it offered him the greatest chance to be a starter. Of course, with Harper's call up, that all changed, and with Bernadina surpassing him as a left-handed PH/Double-switch sub guy, he really didn't have any shot at even semi-regular playing time.All the best to Ankiel, but we're a better team without him.

  32. Section 3, My PFB Hitterish Sofa - Jul 19, 2012 at 3:01 PM

    @Kirbs, re B.J. Upton for Morse rumors:That's all down to a Bowden tweet, apparently, with no corroboration, so consider the source, I'd say, but District on Deck discusses it in some detail, FWIW.

  33. ehay2k - Jul 19, 2012 at 3:46 PM

    #4 – take a look at the replays and you will see that Clippard's pitch to Wright was right where Flores called it. He was simply trying to get a fastball over to get ahead in the count, and Wright guessed correctly and drilled it. He had a three run lead, so it was not a bad decision to get ahead.

  34. waddu eye no - Jul 19, 2012 at 6:25 PM

    we all know ankiel's history. heworked himself back to a second chance and rolde it as far as he could. if he's done, he should retire proud.

  35. natsfan1a - Jul 20, 2012 at 11:51 AM

    Belated birthday wishes for The Arm. Also thanks and good luck to him.

  36. natsfan1a - Jul 20, 2012 at 1:03 PM

    And congrats to sec3 on the "inside beat writing" Q&A at the end of the segment. :-)

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 55 43 --
ATLANTA 54 46 2.0
MIAMI 47 52 8.5
NEW YORK 47 53 9.0
PHILADELPHIA 43 57 13.0
Through Tuesday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
WED: Nats at Rockies, 3:10 p.m.
THU: OFF
FRI: Nats at Reds, 7:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Reds, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Reds, 1:10 p.m.
MON: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
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