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Game 113: Nats at Diamondbacks

Aug 10, 2012, 10:16 PM EDT

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Stephen Strasburg makes his first career start at Chase Field tonight.

PHOENIX — Hello from the Valley of the Sun, where the temperature as I type this is 112 degrees. But factor in the 10 mph breeze, and the wind chill is only 108. No, seriously, that's according to The Weather Channel.

Fortunately, the roof is closed here at Chase Field for the opener of the Nationals' three-game series against the Diamondbacks. This will be Stephen Strasburg's first-ever start here, though I do recall a similarly scorching-hot afternoon two years ago when the then-rookie pitched a simulated game with the roof open here while on the DL with shoulder inflammation.

For those who care to keep track of such things, Strasburg's innings count stands at 127 1/3 entering this game. Which means he's probably got six, maybe seven, more starts until the Nats pull the plug on his season.

Strasburg should have Bryce Harper behind him tonight after the slumping rookie was held out of last night's finale in Houston. One other note of interest: Michael Morse no longer has an 18-game hitting streak on the line. MLB today reversed a scoring decision from the Nationals' Aug. 2 game against the Phillies, changing a Morse single to an error on shortstop Jimmy Rollins. So he's currently riding a seven-game streak, not quite as impressive.

I made the trek west to the desert for this series, so look for plenty of updates and analysis live from the ballpark…

WASHINGTON NATIONALS at ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS
Where: Chase Field
Gametime: 9:40 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN2, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), XM 188
Weather: Indoors

NATIONALS (69-43)
2B Steve Lombardozzi
CF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche

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154 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. MicheleS - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    YEA!! We have Mark!GYFNG! and now we have new reasons to hate the Phillies. BEAST take this out on the snakes!

  2. Bill Simmons - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:32 PM

    Bernadina should be playing. Harper needs to sit and watch.

  3. NCNatsie - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:33 PM

    We have a number for Stras. It's going to be 180 innings. Just heard it on MLB, that Rizzo has announced it.

  4. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:34 PM

    WHy did MLB bother to change the scoring this late on a play (did it cost someone an earned run?On the NLB tonight they are now reporting Rizzo says Strasburg will go to 180 innings.Also do not forget to vote for the Shark. He is up 74-26 against a Royals Double play.Here is the link.http://espn.go.com/mlb/baseballtonight

  5. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:38 PM

    As I wrote this morning, Bryce back in. Hope he gets back on track.

  6. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:41 PM

    Mark may want to revise his Stras counter to 8 to 10 more games.

  7. baseballswami - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:42 PM

    I heard between 160 and 180, definitely no more. Just had an awkward conversation with a Phan, who is embarassed by the scoring challenge. Called it rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

  8. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:42 PM

    Harper will do fine. Just swing at strikes and not at balls and he will do fine. He widen the strike zone starting in July, now time to narrow it down again.

  9. NCNatsie - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:44 PM

    The 180 number for Stras gives him basically the whole regular season, and makes it not unreasonable to tweak his work load — especially if we should clinch early, which would allow him to pitch in the post-season.We'll never know, but my guess would be that Boras was involved in the negotiations.

  10. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:45 PM

    what is the point in changing a ruling a week late. If they changed that, The error that Wright did in the DIckey play was much more an error and actually meant someting and didn't change that.What was MLB's point in changing the hit to an error (and why 7 days after the fact). If it was bad enough to change it should have been changed the next day.

  11. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:46 PM

    Gonat tweeted time to rescore the hit/error in the Marlins game for Reyes on the Espi errant throw to a straight error.

  12. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:53 PM

    Manassas Nats' Fan said…Harper will do fine. Just swing at strikes and not at balls and he will do fine.======================He tried that in Houston the other night and they called the balls strikes anyway.

  13. hiramhover - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:53 PM

    ManassasIf you read back to the source, this is suspect "news." Rizzo did not say Stras will pitch 180 inn. What he said, according to a tweet from Jeff Passan of Yahoo, is that Stras won't pitch more than 180 inn. But Passan didn't report the question he asked–did he introduce the 180 #, or did Rizzo?–and Passan himself later tweeted that he thinks Stras will make only 1 start after hitting the 160 limit. This is now being picked up by everyone–including Dave Cameron of Fangraphs, who I thought was smarter–that Stras will pitch 180 inn.

  14. MicheleS - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:54 PM

    And while we are waiting for our game, time to root for the Mets not to lose. Chippa and McCann are out for the barves. Should be on MLB Network (hopefully I will watch and not throw a shoe at my nice TV to shut Mike Sweeney and Mitch Williams up about Stras)

  15. pRAA with the ISO - Aug 10, 2012 at 10:58 PM

    In related news, Rizzo said the Nats will not play past the World Series.

  16. hiramhover - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:01 PM

    pRAA – Exactly!As for the news about the scoring change – well, the cellar-dwelling Phillies can't dethrone the Nats from atop the NL East, so they're just going to have to content themselves with this sort of crap.

  17. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:02 PM

    CHipper Jones tweeted last night his bad was too hard. Now I see he isn't playing due to back stiffness. Way to go hotel in New York. The home hotel advanate I see.

  18. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:04 PM

    Why would the Phillies want JRo to have an error that make no sense, unless a rum came in (and I can't remember that being part of the equation).Don't forget to vote for the Sharkhttp://espn.go.com/mlb/baseballtonight

  19. NatsJack in Florida - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:06 PM

    Anxious to see what kind of crowd shows up for the Fish/Dodger game tonite with Hanley's return to Miami, espcially since the Dolphins are playing the Bucs 12 miles up the road.

  20. MicheleS - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:09 PM

    NJ.. Crickets..that's what will be at the Fish game

  21. smurff - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:11 PM

    And rightly so. Enjoy it, Loria….

  22. NatsJack in Florida - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:26 PM

    Hanley leading off the second to a chorus of boos from a crowd of about 17,000 or so.

  23. hiramhover - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:30 PM

    … but reported attendance of 28K.

  24. mick - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:31 PM

    this is fun stuff…. Let's go Mets for the next 3, lolGO NATS!!!

  25. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:40 PM

    Big Cat and I were texting back and forth during the games in Houston, how we should get a group together and go to the games in Miami or Houston next year, as they have plenty of seats right near the nats dougout at both stadiums.

  26. MicheleS - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:44 PM

    Manassas.. At this rate, we could go to Philly and get the same seats and not have to go to Miami or Houston.

  27. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:45 PM

    Shark still at 74% after 340 votes. I am not sure when tonight's poll close since there is no show tonight.http://espn.go.com/mlb/baseballtonight

  28. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:46 PM

    I prefer to go to Miami or Houston than Philly. Never feel safe in Philly. Of course if I would quit abusing the Phillies I probably would be OK.

  29. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:56 PM

    By some measures, the Diamondbacks are a better team than either the Giants or the Dodgers. They have a pythagorean record of 61-51; both the Giants and Dodgers are two games 'luckier' than their run differential would suggest, while Arizona is four games 'unluckier' (is that a word?) than theirs.Baseball Reference also has a measure that combines strength of schedule with run differential; using that, the Diamondbacks are again slightly better than SF and LA.St. Louis is in a similar situation in the Central Division (actually, even more so). It wouldn't be surprising to see at least of them — D'backs or Cardinals — end up winning its division. I think my money would be on the Cardinals.The Nats are the only NL division leader that's also the pythagorean leader.

  30. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 10, 2012 at 11:59 PM

    Sorry, but no road trip to Houston for anyone — unless the Nats draw the Astros in inter-league play.

  31. SonnyG10 - Aug 11, 2012 at 12:00 AM

    Manassas Nats' Fan said… Big Cat and I were texting back and forth during the games in Houston, how we should get a group together and go to the games in Miami or Houston next year, as they have plenty of seats right near the nats dougout at both stadiums. August 10, 2012 7:40 PM Don't forget, Houston will be in AL next year.

  32. Faraz Shaikh - Aug 11, 2012 at 12:23 AM

    before I forget, thanks for playoff odds links, hiramhover and 1a. Much appreciated.

  33. Bigfish - Aug 11, 2012 at 12:51 AM

    112 degrees with a slight breeze? As a friend of mine says: that's not just an oven — it's a convection oven.

  34. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 12:52 AM

    we do not know the schedule yet.I had figured you could keep 163 games if you playEach team your own division 18 times (72)Each team in the other two divisions of your league 5 time (60)and 3 gmaes again 2 divisions of the other team or 6 games agains 1 divsion of the other league. (30)there are basciall 52 series in a season. There needs to be a total of 150 series. Sometimes you will have only 1 team playing out of league, sometimes 3, and sometimes even as many as 5.I would think it would be easy to work out. Granted we might not draw Houston next year (but since we played AL east this year, I figure either central or west next year (and both of you do my 3 games only against 10 teams propostion. Then of course with you have to have luck of drawing them away.Miami is more likely.

  35. waddu eye no - Aug 11, 2012 at 1:17 AM

    Hmmm. If they can change a hit to an error, can they change a strike to a ball?Gyfng

  36. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 1:22 AM

    Just saw the replay of the Morse non hit. Je Torre must have been drinking when he made that ruling. That ball was smoked. When Torre was playing third he never would ahve come close to stopping it. Not sure what he has against Morse. Just another reason to hate Hamels as he was the one who appealed for the ruling to save an earned run. He also appealed the Zim hit before that, and it was smoled to nbut Utley was not charged with an error. Of the two it was close to an error.

  37. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 1:46 AM

    Apparently the umps still have harper on the radar as that ball was inside. Then the one pitchedsame spot to zim but a tad lower called a ball. Then Zim makes up for it by swinging at one in the dirt. The old saying on a breaking bal if it is at your waste most the way it will be low by the time it gets to the plate.

  38. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 1:49 AM

    Apparently mark's feed doesn't have the pitch track which showed the harper K slightly inside not a perfect sinler at all.

  39. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 1:57 AM

    Carp is a riot. On Hamels, "wah, wah, wah, wah, wah." Not much use for him padding his ERA off Morse and Rollins.

  40. BigCat - Aug 11, 2012 at 1:59 AM

    Ok…Ive been very critical about Strasburgs competitive fire. I've called him a few names in the past. I am an avid Nats fan…..

  41. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:04 AM

    The paper dolls on the seats (see shot of RIzzo) represent foster children in Arizona. Someone tell FP and Carp that, please.

  42. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:05 AM

    Nice hit by Werth but we cannot do anything with it.

  43. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:06 AM

    Big cat did you see the replay of the Morse non Hit. How are the pork chops. My steak was good.

  44. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:14 AM

    Stras not looking like JZ today. Lot of full counts–oops just walked a guy.

  45. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:16 AM

    After 7 batters Stras has 3 batters he had 3 balls on and a walk. that is 57% of the time at least 3 alls. I a not a walk fan as that is a free trunner, and when you go against a team with hitters that usually leads to trouble.

  46. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:17 AM

    Nice D, though. Stras covering first base (like he should)–then he looks up like he wonders why he was the one getting the out! Why does he look flushed and sweaty in only the 2nd inning, 82 degrees inside?

  47. BigCat - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:26 AM

    All this 2 seam 4 seam stuff. The name of thegame in pitching is movement. Stra throws his "4 seamer" with no movement at about 96-97. When he holds the ball with the seams(2 seamer)it is at 94-96 and runs four inches. Now, I might be an idiot…but why ever throw the 4 seamer? Also, every hitter that is worth his salt batting against Stra goes up there looking for the fastball. A lot of times you see Stra throw a first pitch curve and the ball is way low and away for ball 1. A first pitch curve with Stra should be a "strike one loppy pop." Just spin it in the zone.

  48. BigCat - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:28 AM

    Manassas….the pork chops were great…garlic salt, Paprika, and pepper. Nothin but the truth!

  49. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:28 AM

    Good job Harper

  50. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:30 AM

    I really think the answer to all these Stras questions is that he is still on ReHab…He won't admit it, but pitching feels different and is more difficult than it's ever been in his lifeTHis is why his 4 seam FB doesn't move as much, and why he's been so up and down with his FB command, and why his breaking ball and change are not as consistent..Let's remember, he basically has a new elbow, this is why it takes a full 2 year to really be back from TJ surgery…

  51. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:34 AM

    "Ok…Ive been very critical about Strasburgs competitive fire."What? The guy is famously ultra-competitive. Davey doesn't even talk to him on game days. He does seem to lose focus sometimes, but, c'mon.

  52. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:37 AM

    Lets score some runs again

  53. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:38 AM

    Also, put yourself in Stras's shoes for a sec…He knows if his pitch count gets high, he's coming out…But he also knows the most common game plan against him is to swing early in the count…So is only choice is to try to hit corners early in the count, to avoid barrels, but stay in the zone…That's a pretty tight rope, and a couple bad calls can really blow that whole thing up…

  54. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:38 AM

    The name of the game in pitching is movement.Movement is good, but pitching is about disrupting the hitter's timing. He has a top-shelf changeup.

  55. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:40 AM

    It's not lack of competitive "fire." He just doesn't know when to let go if something isn't perfect, like the mound, the umps, his own performance. I think FP is right, Suzuki will be good for him.

  56. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:41 AM

    While I understand the need for pitch counts, I think it can mess with the pitcher's head early in the game…He can't waste any pitches early, he can't throw a brush back FB to set up an outside breaking ball…Pitch efficient is one thing, but when it effects how you actually approach hitters, it becomes a problem…

  57. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:42 AM

    NL, that's what I meant by losing focus. Thanks for explaining it better.

  58. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:44 AM

    Can't say Suzuki has much of a batter's eye, though. OK, repeating repeating, "not his job."

  59. Cwj - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:46 AM

    I'm kinda surprised and disappointed by the whole "something is wrong with Strasburg" thing.The fact is his numbers are just as elite as they were in his rookie season.More so even, given the sample size. And they'll just get better. He's no where near his prime, yet is one of the best in the game.Shame on the picky Nats fans who criticize a pitcher who is one of the best already! :-)

  60. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:46 AM

    that was a weak hitting half inning.

  61. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:48 AM

    But I always wonder why catchers who are hitting against pitchers they've caught don't have a bigger advantage than they seem to. Like Suzuki, there–he didn't recognise that curveball at all, and yet he's caught it hundreds of times, probably.

  62. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:49 AM

    Cwj–not criticizing Stras. He is one of the great ones, already. Just worried about him.

  63. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:49 AM

    "Shame on the picky Nats fans who criticize a pitcher who is one of the best already! :-) "Amen. Phans In Nats Clothing. If Stras is as bad as all that, nobody would care that he's being shut down.

  64. djinFl. - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:50 AM

    @CwjMaybe when the water is back in the reflecting pool and Strass walks on it, they will cut him some slack.

  65. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:50 AM

    Like Davey says, Stras is just learning to be a pitcher, just learning what are his strengths, how to go against the league. It's fun to watch.

  66. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:50 AM

    NL, I don't think that was meant for you.

  67. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:52 AM

    Mark must be visiting in the seats. Looks like the Zuckerman Effect doesn't work with the roof closed.

  68. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:53 AM

    CMJ, Of course you are correct…Stras is a beast even now…But to those of us who have watched him for long stretches, it's clear he's not himself…I started watching him in college in 2008 when the Nats were losing everyday so I knew they would draft him!He's not back yet…and I think he knows it, and that's why he's so salty whenever some little thing isn't just right…Saw some of that from Jordan last year too…

  69. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:53 AM

    I didn't see the football game. But I understand from reports RGIII was fun to watch and you could see his talent and his potential–and then Rex Griffin came in and was a stiff, as usual. You can see what a difference talent makes. Stras is incredibly talented. You can see the Hall of Fame in him. We are not complaining or even criticizing. We are just observing how it works.

  70. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:54 AM

    Sorry, Rex Grossman. I try not to pay attention, but you can't avoid it.

  71. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:55 AM

    Lol, it's easy Nats Lady….There's the starter RG III and his back-up RG INT…

  72. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:58 AM

    LOL, Eagle. Stras just took out the ump. Not one of the bad ones, I think.

  73. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:58 AM

    So while we're waiting for the umps to come back … I'm a little impressed Ian Desmond made this trip.

  74. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 2:59 AM

    I hope the stall doesn't hurt Stras. Too manys still though. But as long as there is no runs free base runners don't hurt.

  75. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:01 AM

    Haha…Angel is there to be the back up Ump is he???

  76. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:02 AM

    Perfect chance to just let Pitch F/X call the game

  77. Fear and Ignorance - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:02 AM

    Ump Delay Trivia-Who is the only player to hit a home run for 3 different teams in the World Series? No cheating.

  78. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:04 AM

    Swift, maybe that's Angel's motivation–call low strikes so they don't foul as many back.

  79. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:05 AM

    F&I, I'll guess The Jax.

  80. Grandstander - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:07 AM

    Between this, the fake rain delay, the hot stuff, Strasburg just can't catch a break.

  81. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:08 AM

    Haha Zofa, I still think Angel's motivated by Air-Time…He wants to be The Show

  82. Cwj - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:08 AM

    Damn, I should have known posting a comment for the first time in over a month would be bad luck.:DBut yeah Strasburg throws way too many pitches than he should.

  83. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:09 AM

    see why I hate walks. You give them free chances to score runs once there is a hit. Both walks came after 2 outs which I guess is better, but in close games walks must be avoided. He is too good a pitcher to be nibbling for walks.

  84. Exposremains - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:11 AM

    Is seems like the biggest thing that Strasburg lost from his injury is the ability not be bothered by all sorts of outside distractions.Its something that most Nats pitcher need to improve.

  85. Cwj - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:14 AM

    Manassas- Yeah, walks absolutely kill. Also agree with you about nibbling. It is incredibly frustrating.

  86. djinFl. - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:16 AM

    The Diamonbacks broadcast showed Strass trying to stretch out his back after the inning. They are sure he tightened up waitng out the delay.By the way the only have had great things to say about the Nats and certainly love Rizzo.

  87. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:16 AM

    He's bothered b/c he just doesn't feel right and it's frustrating…Ever have surgery? Afterwards you're always too hot, too cold, hungry but don't want to eat, everything annoys you..Stras is annoyed b/c what used to be the most natural thing in the world to him doesn't feel right and he's pissed about it…Time will heal all…

  88. Cwj - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:17 AM

    Yes!!!!! Zimmerman hits a 2 run bomb!

  89. NatsLady - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:17 AM

    RZ!!!!! Um, Corisone??? Not today!

  90. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:17 AM

    Has a Cortisone Shot ever received MVP votes??

  91. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:19 AM

    Nice Zim Bomb

  92. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:24 AM

    "But yeah Strasburg throws way too many pitches than he should."And more harder else they can hitting it.

  93. BigCat - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:25 AM

    Swift Eagle…..you are exactly right with Stra that he is basically still in rehab. He had major elbow surgery and from what JZimm said, one day you will feel great and the next you have no clue where theball is going. Also Eagle….you make it sound like Stra calls his pitches….I don't think so. All this talk about pitch count and "pitching to contact" etc. Well…what the hell is that all about. You have a big strapping guy on the mound who throws 94-98 mph with a 2 seam fastball that runs and dips 4 inches and you have him starting guys off with curve balls and change ups. Every hitter is a full count. Who ever is calling the pitches should be held accountable. You tell the catcher to set up in the middle of the plate and you tell Stra to hold the ball with the seams and aim for the catchers cup and throw it hard as hell. Then when he gets ahead in the count he can throw his curve or change. You have a great infield ….use them.Also Eagle…..did Stra fall completely off the mound towards 1st base at SD State as he does now? Ya know, when you open, or fly open like that it adds tremendous pressure on your arm.

  94. Cwj - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:26 AM

    Wow, Stras came back focused and struck out the side.I say leave him in for one more inning. :-)

  95. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:28 AM

    Hey Mark, here's your answer on the twin bill:"For the first time in team history, the D-backs will play host to a doubleheader when they take on the Marlins in a day-night twin bill on Aug. 22."The doubleheader came about because the D-backs were scheduled to play 23 straight games, which is a violation of the Basic Agreement between the owners and the players. Therefore, Major League Baseball allowed them to have an off-day Aug. 23 and move the Marlins game scheduled for that day to Aug. 22."

  96. Cwj - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:29 AM

    Morse's power is unbelievable. Wow, look how far he's hitting them

  97. ehay2k - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:30 AM

    Wow. Morse is locked in!

  98. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:30 AM

    Big Cat…I actually think Stras and the catcher call the pitches..I agree with you, I'd like to see that in the pitching coaches hands at times, but it's not how they do it MLBHe fell off to 1B in college, but not too pronounced..I haven't noticed YouTube of Strass at SD Statehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pEOx3zTnSGQ

  99. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:30 AM

    That was at least 30 feet above the 413' sign.

  100. ehay2k - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:35 AM

    Which would probably equate to 13 feet above the 430' sign!

  101. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:35 AM

    Morse bomb nice. Sasuki must not think he can hit bunting like that

  102. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:37 AM

    S-U-Z-U-K-I

  103. ehay2k - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:38 AM

    Suzuki bunted to keep away from The DP to make sure Stars got to bat last in the inning. Was smart play, I thought.

  104. MicheleS - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:38 AM

    Since I have been sort of in and out on this game (sad I know), does it look like Stras is favoring his back?

  105. Cwj - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:42 AM

    Okay, one more inning for Strasburg :-) Let him pitch into the 7th, I say :)

  106. Manassas Nats' Fan - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:42 AM

    Good 6 innings. I doubt he will be back. The second walk to Monterro after a 1-2 count and umpire change, set up their only run.

  107. ehay2k - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:42 AM

    MicheleS, after about 100 pitches, he will be favoring the pine now. :-)

  108. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:43 AM

    Someone asked this the other night; didn't see an answer. Who was the guy (in uniform, not a player) talking to Gio in the cut-away shot just before Mr. Upton grounded out?

  109. Cwj - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:44 AM

    Michele- I didn't notice anything with his back. Maybe I missed something though?…

  110. MicheleS - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:45 AM

    Eugene, I saw that same guy throwing BP in the cages at the STH Picnic in the Park. He was a the All star game too.. so does he run the clubhouse?

  111. djinFl. - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:47 AM

    @Michele from earlier postThe Diamonbacks broadcast showed Strass trying to stretch out his back after the inning. They are sure he tightened up waitng out the delay.By the way the only have had great things to say about the Nats and certainly love Rizzo.

  112. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:49 AM

    I haven't noticed anything with Stas's back either..Big Cat correctly noted that he is falling off towards 1B more than usual, but I'm sure he'd have been pulled if there were anything wrong…

  113. MicheleS - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:51 AM

    Thanks DJ/Swift.. I just saw him stretching funny on the mound. But doesn't matter.. as Ehay said, he will be on the pine now.

  114. ehay2k - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:56 AM

    That wasn't very Phat, Albers!

  115. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:57 AM

    Trout can do no wrong, it sometimes seems. Hits a sacrifice fly and two runs score (one an SF, the other on an error).

  116. ehay2k - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:58 AM

    Mark Z. Can you ask Suzuki how catchng Stras measured up to his expectations?

  117. Cwj - Aug 11, 2012 at 3:59 AM

    Time for bed.Great outing by Strasburg. I'm confident in the bullpen to hold it :-)Night everyone.

  118. MicheleS - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:04 AM

    Okay.. those 3 guys behind homeplate need to go away. Standing there, drinking beer, yapping and NOT PAYING attention to the game. GEESH

  119. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:06 AM

    Michele, they are probably talking about shopping.

  120. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:07 AM

    Isn't great that every shot of Davey late in the game you see Chad Tracy right next to him? "Let me hit coach, I'm ready"…Love that

  121. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:08 AM

    Touche, Zofa. Well zaid.

  122. djinFl. - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:09 AM

    "Nationals just came in and put that noose around our neck" Mark Grace D-backs color man.

  123. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:10 AM

    Juuuuust a bit outside

  124. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:13 AM

    Ironically, if they're discussing their portfolios or somesuch, they ARE talking about shopping.

  125. Fear and Ignorance - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:14 AM

    Zection 3-Sorry for the delay on the trivia…it was Matt Williams. Heard that on a WGN broadcast a few weeks ago…forgot what a good player Matt Williams was back in the day. SF, CLE, and ARI

  126. rogieshan - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:14 AM

    I agree with F.P. on Harper having the right makeup (good eye with speed) to hit leadoff. Move Werth up to the second hole when Desmond returns.

  127. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:15 AM

    Cleveland. Forgot Cleveland. I was sitting in left for his HR for the Giants.

  128. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:17 AM

    Reggie didn't make it to the WS with the Angels, did he? They blew that ALCS.

  129. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:23 AM

    Good time for a Squueze…

  130. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:23 AM

    or a Squeeze..either one

  131. Fear and Ignorance - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:24 AM

    Yeah, I think you're right about Reggie and the Angels. Just looked it up…Angels lost ALCS in 82 and 86 (which I believe was the Donnie Moore game). Looked up Williams, as well, and surprised he didn't get more votes for the HOF. Never expected him to get in, but 1% of vote seems pretty low for a guy who had 378 HR, 4 Gold Gloves, 5 AS games and made several postseason appearances.

  132. Grandstander - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:30 AM

    FP shout out to Mark!

  133. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:36 AM

    Matt was up and down to AAA a few times before he stuck at the majors, as I recall. Took him a while to get that curve ball away.

  134. djinFl. - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:36 AM

    The D-Backs announcers tonight….Morse is a monster when he connectsHave we told you about their pitching staff?Clint's done well, but Davey is manager of the yearHave we told you about their pitching staff?They make your food taste bad tonight.Have we told you about their pitching staff?If there is something sly going on in the clubhouse, LaRoche is involvedHave we told you about their pitching staff?No more 3-2 pitches once their bullpen comes in. It is close the door.Have we told you about their pitching staff?Come out and enjoy the air conditioning and see the best team in baseball.Have we… well you get itComparing Nationals to the movie The Titans now." Everywhere We Go People want To Know"

  135. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:37 AM

    Save a couple of those runs for the SF series — I'm heading down for the first two games.

  136. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:39 AM

    Another great AB from Werth and it's 9-1Where's Henry when we need him??This just in, Nats are damn good…

  137. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:42 AM

    So Houston beat Milwaukee after Milwaukee swept the Reds?

  138. sjm308 - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:43 AM

    F & I – I love trivia!!(not as much as our Nationals but it's close)I am adding your question to my trivia sheet I take to the park to keep my section entertained.I'll start you off with an easy one that is current. I will go deep into the 50s if you like.Name the 3 current players that have hit at least 20 homeruns every season since 2002?By the way, I don't see Peric lammenting about Werth's lack of power tonight? I am pretty sure he is hitting way over .300 and two of his hits tonight were doubles. I have to think his power will be back even more as he continues to play more. We are up 9-1 I am headed for my nap that Peric says I need.Go Nats!!

  139. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:45 AM

    Mark Z: The crowd of 29,362 has grown quite restless, but most don't want to leave early because there's a postgame fireworks show.————————-Given the score, was wondering why so many people seemed to remain in the stands.

  140. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:48 AM

    Oh that ALR…He's that sly trickster we all knew when we were kids…The one who never got caught…Eddie Haskel

  141. MicheleS - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:48 AM

    WHO? Wil Nieves? I bet Charlie and Dave are warming up the song for him

  142. djinFl. - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:49 AM

    @EugeneThe announcers are worried they might wind up with a San Deigo type explosion the way things are going.

  143. Fear and Ignorance - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:50 AM

    I will say Pujols, AROD, Teixeira.

  144. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:52 AM

    dj, they're only 4 back of the division, why do the announcers think they'll blow up the team?

  145. Swift Eagle - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:53 AM

    Curly W #70 is in the books…And that's 3 more than anyone else…

  146. MicheleS - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:53 AM

    WOOOO HOOOOOOOO!!! ZZZZZZZZZ!!! Going to bed

  147. Zection 3, My Zofa - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:54 AM

    Wooooooooo HoooooooooooooooooooTM Michele.Man, they are really going to miss LaRoche if he's not back next year. He makes every bad throw look like a strike.

  148. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:55 AM

    Before the game I posted: By some measures, the Diamondbacks are a better team than either the Giants or the Dodgers.What I failed to add was: But not better than the Nationals.Well done. Won't get to watch either of the next two, but will be there in San Francisco for both Gio's and Jordan Zimmermann's starts. GYFNG!

  149. djinFl. - Aug 11, 2012 at 4:55 AM

    Not the team ZThe fireworks4th of july all the fireworks went off at once.

  150. sjm308 - Aug 11, 2012 at 5:02 AM

    F & I – Albert is correct Arod only had 16 last year – 2 to go

  151. Fear and Ignorance - Aug 11, 2012 at 5:15 AM

    Was thinking Dunn…didn't do it last year. Cabrera…he came up in 2003 and won the WS at 20 years old. I will guess Big Papi…not sure if he hit that many with the Twinkies…and Soriano. I really can't think of anybody else it could be.

  152. Timothy Folk - Aug 11, 2012 at 5:17 AM

    I LOVE MY TEAM…. jeez o flip this is insane… I hope this dream doesnt end until 2020

  153. Faraz Shaikh - Aug 11, 2012 at 10:21 AM

    bet soriano is one of them.

  154. natsfan1a - Aug 11, 2012 at 11:43 AM

    There was a football game last night? I hadn't heard.NatsLady said… I didn't see the football game. But I understand from reports RGIII was fun to watch and you could see his talent and his potential–and then Rex Griffin came in and was a stiff, as usual. You can see what a difference talent makes. Stras is incredibly talented. You can see the Hall of Fame in him. We are not complaining or even criticizing. We are just observing how it works. August 10, 2012 10:53 PM NatsLady said… Sorry, Rex Grossman. I try not to pay attention, but you can't avoid it. August 10, 2012 10:54 PM

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 58 48 --
ATLANTA 58 51 1.5
MIAMI 53 55 6.0
NEW YORK 52 56 7.0
PHILADELPHIA 48 61 11.5
Through Thursday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
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.
THU: Mets at Nats, 12:35 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.

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