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Jackson’s brilliance wasted

Aug 19, 2012, 4:05 AM EDT

Associated Press photo
Michael Morse and the Nats were shut out by Jon Niese and two Mets relievers.

They packed themselves into Nationals Park on a gorgeous Saturday night, the second-largest gathering in the stadium’s history, and for 2 hours and 35 minutes they waited anxiously for an opportunity to explode.

Even as Jon Niese posted zero after zero on the scoreboard, the sellout throng of 42,662 sensed the Nationals would eventually do something at the plate. This team had come from behind too many times and scored too many runs lately to believe another rally wasn’t forthcoming, a sentiment shared by those inside the dugout.

“Put us in that situation,” Edwin Jackson said, “more times than not we come through.”

Except this time they didn’t. The big hit never came. And by night’s end, the Nationals were left scratching their heads at a 2-0 loss to the Mets that had to rank among their most frustrating of the season.
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  1. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 4:35 AM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 4:37 AM

    EJax pitched well, Jon Niese pitched better.I think the 2 extra days of rest also helped EJax. Once he got through the 1st inning he cruised until that leadoff walk to Wright that was followed by the HR by Ike Davis. What's the old saying "Leadoff walks come back to haunt".

  3. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - Aug 19, 2012 at 4:39 AM

    EJax = PFB for a No. 4 starter.About to become a No. 3 starter in mid-September or so.He's fine, better than fine. He'd be an ace on half the staffs in baseball.

  4. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - Aug 19, 2012 at 4:40 AM

    Off topic: Astros first team to fire their manager as Brad Mills is sacked. Replacement named Sunday.Guess: Manny Acta will be the second.

  5. pRAA with the ISO - Aug 19, 2012 at 4:59 AM

    Guess: Manny Acta will be the second.You think Houston still wants him? They wanted him before he signed with Cleveland. That was the other offer he had.Acta did a good job rebuilding the Nats his first year. I think it was more the clubhouse cancers Bowden gave him to work with (Felipe Lopez, Paul LoDuca, Elijah Dukes, Lastings Milledge, yada yada yada) than his managing that did him in here. Proof of the pudding is that Riggleman wasn't able to do anything with that bunch either once he inherited it.

  6. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 5:04 AM

    Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me said… He's fine, better than fine. He'd be an ace on half the staffs in baseball. August 19, 2012 12:39 AM ________________________________A 3.69 ERA? That is where #3 pitchers are. I think you are getting a little carried away after a good start. He would be a #1 on a few teams like the Baltimore Orioles but he isn't an Ace. Ace potential is there but just to inconsistent.He has had 12 very good starts, 5 good starts and 6 clunkers.

  7. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 5:09 AM

    Angels just lost 10-8 after a 8-0 lead.

  8. peric - Aug 19, 2012 at 5:19 AM

    EJax knows this is when the rubber meets the road … particularly since the reason they originally signed him is almost here … Stras' shutdown.He's stepping up to the plate as he said in his radio interview. That is what they need right now. Hopefully, the offense isn't about to go into one of its prolonged slumps as has happened at times this season.

  9. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 5:20 AM

    Gonat said… Highlight of my evening was hanging with NatsJack and Swift Eagle and the other NIs.At least the Braves lost. August 18, 2012 10:38 PM ________________________________I copied the message here for you to see. Sorry I can't remember everyone's name on here that I met tonight and not even sure if everyone is a NatsInsider.I was up in the upper deck for a while with my season ticket people and worked my way down. Hadn't seen NatsJack since Spring Training.Lets see if you remember what you said to me after our hug goodbye?

  10. Doc - Aug 19, 2012 at 11:15 AM

    Davey 'the offense-minded manager' does a pretty good job of managing pitchers. He deserves some credit for switching EJax with Det. Giving Ejax 1 day of extra rest had to help EJax's awesome breaking stuff last night. Wasn't aware of the record for swinging strikes that Ejax equaled, but I thought it was close to the best performance by a Nats' pitcher this year.Davey will find a way to put Ejax's efforts to good use in the playoffs.

  11. baseballswami - Aug 19, 2012 at 11:16 AM

    Anyone figure out the pitching match ups for us this week? Can we have sheets or do we miss him? Who will we pitch and who will we face? Surely we get SS and JZ, then — don't think I know where our rotation is at the moment. Definitely don't know the barves.

  12. sjm308 - Aug 19, 2012 at 11:23 AM

    Swami – over on espn they have the pitching matchups for at least the next 5 games.Hudson – ZimmermanMalholm – StrasburgMedlen – Detwilerand against PhillieKendrick – JacksonIts not listed but I have to think its Hamels – Gonzalez after that

  13. sjm308 - Aug 19, 2012 at 11:31 AM

    So, I woke up all philosophical this morning. As an ex-coach I have it engrained in the few brain cells left, that there is no such thing as a "good" loss. Just can't happen, nothing positive. If you are in a profession where the goal is to win and you lose, you have not reached your goal. This baseball thing, with the scoreboard watching and long season, allows me to rationalize a loss with the results of the Braves. I walked out of the stadium with the Braves down 6-1 in the 9th feeling just a little better about my team. I am also certain that in a sport that plays 162 games (or more I hope!), it's a little different attitude in the locker room. In baseball, you can't win them all and I do understand that but still, I have to revert back to no loss is a good loss, its just some are tolerated better in baseball.Back to your normal broadcast and thanks for listening.Go Nats!!

  14. baseballswami - Aug 19, 2012 at 11:56 AM

    I hear you. Losses actually hurt more this year, not less. We always seem to try to look for something, anything good, to grasp onto , though. Under the disappointment of being shut out ( ouch ), I am relieved to see what EJax is capable of. I also don't think I have ever seen Mattheus so sharp. Maybe the lining isn't actually silver, but, it's something .

  15. Another_Sam - Aug 19, 2012 at 11:59 AM

    BTW — does anyone know if they're going to shut Stras down? How many innings is he going to pitch? What do you guys think?LOL — just kidding.

  16. JayB - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:02 PM

    Games like this is why I would not be sitting Harper for Moore. You have a good amount of off days from here forward. You have to win as many as you can. Moore is not ready for a meaningful games in September at the plate and is really bad in LF.If you are going to sit Harper for Moore you are just saying we have already won the division and they have not done that. Yes RH vs LHed…..don't care play your best players.Also Ian D should not be playing here right now. Lombo was better at the time. Desmond should have been at AA this week.Davey being Davey….I love him and he is proving what I said for years of ACTA and Riggs…..you need a real Manager but he is not always right and he is stubborn….see Wang, Hrod, Nady….

  17. JayB - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:15 PM

    for all you LH vs RH match up types with respect to Moore vs Harper….Davey knows that is not an issue when you are talking about superior talent……“[Zimmermann] is no slouch and I don’t care if he’s pitching against all left-handers,” Johnson said.

  18. natsfan1a - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:21 PM

    Heading out soon for cat-care duty and then off to the ballpark. Hoping for a curly w today. We're in 204 today. If you're there, too, yell "It's a marathon, not a sprint" or "Gulp! Bang!" or "GYFNG!" or some such so I'll know that you're an Insider. ;-) Go, GIO!! Go, NATS BATS!!

  19. natsfan1a - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:26 PM

    Just found a nice piece on Rizzo and Italian-American heritage day.

  20. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:28 PM

    JayB, Niese shut down almost all the Nats hitters. This isn't about TyMo vs Harper.

  21. natsfan1a - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:31 PM

    Okay, one more post before I head out the door. Tuned in the LA-ATL broadcast on MLB Network after the Nats game ended last night. The broadcasters (btw, I realize that the Braves were losing was that a golf game or a baseball game they were calling?) noted that one of the Braves few losses on their recent hot streak had been to Niese, fwiw. (They had just mentioned the Nats loss last night.)

  22. natsfan1a - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:32 PM

    One more post: insert "but" after "losing"Okay, natsfan1a: out!

  23. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:39 PM

    Gonat at 12:37 and again at 1:04, well said. That leadoff walk to David Wright got EJax pitching out of the stretch and out of rhythm. He was on a roll to that point. Small things turn into big things when you issue leadoff freebies.

  24. JayB - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:41 PM

    ghost….it is the energy level Harper brings as much as his AB's…just watch the condensed game and it confirmed in my eyes anyway….Harper would have made the diving catch in the first inning. Charged up the team…they were dead last nignt…..Niese was not throwing anything unhittable…they just sleep walked through the game in my view…..Harper does not allow you do do that….when he plays it makes everyone step up their game….if a 19 year old can hustle ground balls out and you don't….you look bad. Same with Lombo…..Not a good time to have Ian go 2 for 25. He should be at AA proving he is ready to return.

  25. ehay2k - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:43 PM

    Agreed Ghost, this is about the hitting coach! (Ducking, running, giggling)

  26. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:49 PM

    JayB, I too questioned the wisdom of bringing Desi back without a AA or AAA stint. Davey does it his way and 2 games back isn't a determination of whether or not it was the right move. Conventional baseball wisdom says its the wrong move.On Harper, I agree he is an upgrade on defense over TyMo.

  27. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:56 PM

    Hefner pitching for the Mets. A RH that Harper will slice and dice. I believe Desi is sitting today and Espi is at SS and Lombardozzi is in at 2nd.

  28. ehay2k - Aug 19, 2012 at 12:56 PM

    Porous defense in the OF was not our problem last night. We hit a lot of balls right to people, and the catch by Baxter was a killer (Why was he there? What was he thinking?) Win today, and take another series. Will miss the game but will check into NI when I get back later.

  29. MicheleS - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:11 PM

    JayB.. I kind of thought Bryce might have gotten a sit down for that errant throw on Friday. Plus the kid does need a day off now and then, I think the season has worn on him. Which would be why his batting average has been dropping. Sometimes a mental break on the bench will help you refocus on what the pitchers are doing to him (Away, Away).Also, not sure of the strike zone last night, but was Morse getting Squeezed by the ump? He was up there swinging at everyting after that first K he had

  30. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:12 PM

    Bernadina starting today with Morse and Harper. Forgot to mention that.

  31. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:14 PM

    MicheleS bringing the morning wisdom. Impressive!

  32. MicheleS - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:15 PM

    Not that you can trust the weatherman but:NBCWashington‏@nbcwashingtonBe prepared, folks. RT @ChuckBell4 Update: rain looking more and more likely BEFORE noontime. #NATS game may be wet by the 4-5th inning

  33. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:18 PM

    Davey finally has the horses in place to rest/sit anyone now. Very good depth on the team.

  34. JayB - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:25 PM

    Then why is Ian D playing without rehab assignment after just a few days of baseball activates? What is the harm in making him prove his timing is ready?

  35. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:30 PM

    Someone here congratulated Melky for coming clean on his steroid use. I contended that after the Braun fiasco MLB kept it confidential and Cabrera failed his appeal and what choice to Melky have but to gracefully apologize and start the PR healing process.You won't believe what the NY Daily News is saying about the behind the scenes. I don't know how to add a link but it's a must read along with Victor Conte's assertion that there are still cheaters cheating.

  36. MicheleS - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:32 PM

    JayB.. Totally AGREE on Ian.. I wish I could read Davey's mind at times.And you know it's bad when Stras is the first segment on the Sports Reporters.

  37. MicheleS - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:37 PM

    Okay.. i knew I never liked Howard Bryant much, but geesh is Lupica a gas bag.

  38. Laddie Blah Blah - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:38 PM

    "You won't believe what the NY Daily News is saying about the behind the scenes. I don't know how to add a link but it's a must read along with Victor Conte's assertion that there are still cheaters cheating."Maybe this one:http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/exclusive-daily-news-uncovers-bizarre-plot-melky-cabrera-fake-website-duck-drug-suspension-article-1.1139623Melky is sorry – sorry he got caught.

  39. MicheleS - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:39 PM

    Ghost.. me too on Melky, just saw that article as well, so I retract my comment of good on him for fessing up. I think Laddie may have said this, I hope they catch all the cheaters and if it's a nats player so be it.Here is the link everyone.Melky

  40. MicheleS - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:40 PM

    Yup.. Laddie owe you a beverage.

  41. mick - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:41 PM

    Gang… Jonathon Niese is a hell of a pitcher… just one of those days… now if it happens today, that is a concern

  42. mick - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:43 PM

    Hefner has almost a 5.00 ERA so we should bomb him today

  43. mick - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:44 PM

    as far as Melky goes… Ray Knight I thought summed it up best, why why why?

  44. Laddie Blah Blah - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:46 PM

    Bud Selig, from the NY Daily News article:"Major League Baseball declined to comment on the Cabrera case but at the owners’ meetings in Denver last week, commissioner Bud Selig touched on the issue of those who facilitate drug use by players, telling owners they would be “shocked” when they hear what’s been going on “when this all comes out.”If that quote is accurate, then Selig is on it. Good on you, Bud.Now, how about getting the TV revenue snafu with Angelos straightened out?

  45. mick - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:47 PM

    I will say this for Melky… he did not try to explain it away like a cheating spouse when caught saying… its not what you think, lol

  46. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:49 PM

    Laddie, that's it. It's a good read and a lesson to those who jump to quick conclusions. That loophole is there for good reason and Melky creatively tried to exploit it. The levels cheaters go to are incredulous.Talking about quick conclusions, dont base Desi's quick return on 2 games stats. If he goes 3-4 Monday, all of a sudden he looks good. I don't agree with the no rehab but it's in line with Daveys approach with even slumping players.

  47. Laddie Blah Blah - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:51 PM

    "Yup.. Laddie owe you a beverage."It won't cost you much. Coffee is about the strongest stuff I drink.Scored tickets today in the VIP section behind home plate. A relative knows someone who knows someone, and yours truly ends up close enough to talk it up with Gio in the on-deck circle. Everyone knows who MicheleS is, so I'll give him your regards…;o)

  48. mick - Aug 19, 2012 at 1:52 PM

    Ghost…. Desi is hitting the ball solidly and swings looks good, he will begin smacking it shortly. I understand what Davey's doing, I do think Lombo should have been used at some point last night as a spark

  49. MicheleS - Aug 19, 2012 at 2:18 PM

    Laddie. Very jealous and i wish i knew Gio. Send him my regards just in case he reads NI.

  50. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 2:24 PM

    mick, I hope so on Desi. The issue is the replacement situation was working well which made this a non rush back situation and they had Izturis as emergency backup.Again, hard to question Desi's effectiveness after 2 games.

  51. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - Aug 19, 2012 at 2:30 PM

    Michele, please stop by Sec. 134. I've got something for new. Thanks. I'll be in my seat, Row PP, by 12:15…

  52. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 2:43 PM

    Brad Mills fired last night by Astros. Jim Riggleman and Dan Radison already on short list. Both will work on the cheap, perfect for the Astros who are rebuilding and doubtful they can be competitive for a while.

  53. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 2:44 PM

    Mark Simon ‏@msimonespn For @zipzabel Mets are 2-2 all-time in games in which they have 3 H or fewer, 15+K. Rest of MLB is 3-88 since 1920

  54. MicheleS - Aug 19, 2012 at 2:45 PM

    Sunshine. Will do. I may be in line for signature Sundays. Its Ross today!

  55. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 3:02 PM

    William Ladson ‏@washingnats Jayson Werth and Ian Desmond are in the lineup after all. #Nats #MLB

  56. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 3:04 PM

    Davey changed mind on lineup. Werth 9, Harper 8, Zimmerman 5, LaRoche 3, Morse 7, Desmond 6, Espinosa 4, Suzuki 2, Gonzalez 1.No Lombo as promised and no Bernadina. Harper back in as is Suzuki.

  57. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 3:05 PM

    Ghost Of Steve M. said… Bernadina starting today with Morse and Harper. Forgot to mention that. August 19, 2012 9:12 AM _______________________________Why do you think Davey changed his mind on resting Werth and Desi?

  58. NatsLady - Aug 19, 2012 at 3:05 PM

    Sec 304. don't usually post during games but i try to read once in a while if i get a connection. Go Nats! Rain, rain, go away–unless we are losing. Have Gio jersey and underneath Clipp jersey. :-)

  59. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 3:08 PM

    Gonat, didn't make sense to me to rest Desi. With Desi playing means no Lombo leading off which is why Werth is in.

  60. JayB - Aug 19, 2012 at 3:09 PM

    Ghost…..this is daveys weakness…too easily influenced by vets….seeg nady and stairs

  61. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 3:10 PM

    Dan Kolko ‏@masnKolko Davey had said he planned on giving both Desmond and Werth today off. Instead, both guys play.

  62. Ghost Of Steve M. - Aug 19, 2012 at 3:16 PM

    JayB, Davey totally reversed course on promising to get Lombo playing time. Davey also mentioned he may not play Lombo again in LF so why not play him at 2nd and give Espi the day off.I do agree with Desi in there again as he doesn't need the rest.

  63. Gonat - Aug 19, 2012 at 3:19 PM

    JayB said… Ghost…..this is daveys weakness…too easily influenced by vets….seeg nady and stairs August 19, 2012 11:09 AM _______________________________Some would say he quickly excorcised himself of both of those guys.DeRosa may never start again for the Nats.

  64. mick - Aug 19, 2012 at 3:28 PM

    Gonat said…Mark Simon ‏@msimonespn For @zipzabel Mets are 2-2 all-time in games in which they have 3 H or fewer, 15+K. Rest of MLB is 3-88 since 1920 this is why I love baseball.. great post, these stats are always faascinating!

  65. natsfan1a - Aug 20, 2012 at 1:34 AM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  66. natsfan1a - Aug 20, 2012 at 1:36 AM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  67. natsfan1a - Aug 20, 2012 at 1:37 AM

    Thanks for the link on Melky. I personally could have done without the rather condescending remarks about commenters jumping to conclusions and learning lessons. But that's just me. Have a nice evening. :-)

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