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Instant analysis: Brewers 4, Nats 2

Sep 22, 2012, 2:07 AM EDT

US Presswire photo
Edwin Jackson gave up one run in eight innings but didn't earn the win.

Game in a nutshell: Two innings into this one, it looked like we might be in for a slugfest. Adam LaRoche launched a two-run homer in the bottom of the first off Shaun Marcum. Jonathan Lucroy then responded with a solo homer in the top of the second off Edwin Jackson. Long night for the pitching staffs? Actually, no. Both Jackson and Marcum dominated after that, with Jackson getting the edge thanks in no small part to some stellar defense behind him. Bryce Harper nailed Ryan Braun at the plate with a perfect throw in the top of the fourth. Danny Espinosa and Ian Desmond combined to turn a nifty, 4-6-3 double play moments later to end that inning. And Jesus Flores made perhaps his best throw of the year to catch Jean Segura trying to steal second in the top of the eighth, capping a strike-em-out, throw-em-out double play that brought a roar from the crowd of 30,382. Those roars, though, turned to boos in the ninth inning when Tyler Clippard (whose hold on the closer's job was already tenuous) blew his fifth save of the year, letting the Brewers rally to score the tying run, the go-ahead run and an insurance run in stunning fashion. The Nationals couldn't rally in the bottom of the ninth, so they wound up suffering one of their more frustrating losses of the season. On the bright side, the Braves lost in Philadelphia, so the Nationals' lead in the NL East remains 5 1/2 games and their magic number to clinch the division title is down to 7.

Hitting highlight: They got the early blast from LaRoche, and little did the Nationals know they wouldn't get anything else the rest of theRead more ยป

  1. SonnyG10 - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:11 AM

    I am so ticked off. I knew we were in trouble when I saw Clip come in to close. Davey may have equal confidence in Storen and Clippard, but I sure don't.

  2. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:13 AM

    I don't think we are going to see Clippard much anymore. Garcia and Storen.

  3. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:15 AM

    Clippard with a 4.45 ERA since the All Star break and how many times has he been saved by the Shark and others?

  4. Secret wasian man - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:15 AM

    Sonny, I am sick also. I knew it was over when he came in. Its not his stuff. Its a choke. He cant handle it. On that note the hitting stinks also. Playing good teams lately and not getting it done.

  5. Dan Strong - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:17 AM

    I have zero confidence in Clippard. Either way, another horrible offensive effort.

  6. Secret wasian man - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:17 AM

    William O, thanks for setting swift straight earlier.

  7. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:18 AM

    I remember those games against the Mets just after the All Star break and every inning with him in a close game you are just sweating. It is harder for me to remember. I guess he was lights out in the first half but that is a dimming memory.

  8. Swift Eagle - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:18 AM

    Davey said he didn't want to use Drew 3 days in a row

  9. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:25 AM

    I have no problem with people who want to post and "hold hands" and talk about how great the Nats are. To me that is a kind of fair weather thing because most of those people didn't do that in past years but it is fine with me, but people who want to come on and critique decisions or play by the team are not Legionnaires of Doom or bad fans or whatever.The best team in baseball wins 60 percent of the time. Some of us are interested in getting that figure up to 67 percent and are wondering if it is possible to do that. Such speculation does not make us lesser fans than the people who claim to never say anything negative about the team.

  10. Dan Strong - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:25 AM

    Couldn't agree more. When was the last time he(Clippard) had an easy 1,2,3 save? They all feel like he struggles.

  11. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:26 AM

    Why not use Garcia?

  12. SonnyG10 - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:26 AM

    It was a shame to waste such a good effort by Edwin. Seems like our hitters took the night off after ALR hit the two run homer. I remember thinking we better add on because I didn't think 2 runs would win the game for us. When the score held up to the nineth, I thought we had a chance…then I saw Clip was closing…

  13. DWS - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:28 AM

    Unbelievable. Thought they would win them all? Be happy their where they are…Not many fans can enjoy that. Speaking from experience.

  14. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:29 AM

    With the hitting, for some reason, Harper seems to be streaky. I think he is about due for another of those three or four home runs in a few games run.And let's not forget his throw to home tonight, which almost saved the game. That might have been the best throw to home that I have ever seen. George Foster's to Bench in '75 was pretty good but Harper's arm is amazing.

  15. Swift Eagle - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:29 AM

    Too bad more support wasn't given to EJax, who had a great outing.. Very surprised the Nats were unable to add on, even against what has been a weak Mil bullpen..Clip certainly didn't have it, and the bunt hit and passed ball really got the 9th off to a bad start…This one stings, yet another test for this team…

  16. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:34 AM

    I felt that this was one of the few times each player did not have the focus at the plate tonight after the 4th inning. I bet Davey saw that too and will address it. Howver, let's be fair here, last night was emotional and it may have taken some of the focus away tonight

  17. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:35 AM

    As far as Clip goes, no excuses and he needs to accept a role as a set up guy without an attitude about it, not that he would have any room to have one.

  18. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:36 AM

    Ejac was superb! that was the only bright spot

  19. DWS - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:37 AM

    It will harden them up for the postseason. I'm sure Davey is watching to see who is ready for the pressure.

  20. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:39 AM

    DWS agreed. I am wondering if this had been a playoff game if Davey would have pulled Clip after the long fly ball out to Harper. I could tell he did not have it at that point. Could Davey tell and would have pulled him in a post season game?

  21. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:42 AM

    Its pretty amusing listening to the callers on Phil Wood's show … all bandwagon types when in the past they were usually reasonably knowledgeable. ~laughing~ Now Phil had to cut someone off … Clip has pitched a lot of critical, high stress innings over the past three years. Perhaps he's injured and won't admit it? This seems like a pretty consistent pattern now …Its up to Davey and Cat to figure out what's wrong because Clip ain't talkin'. They need Clipp for the playoffs and its getting might close, there's a fine line … and playoff series are extremely short relative to the regular season.

  22. Swift Eagle - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:43 AM

    Glad the Dodgers beat the Reds, Nats still the overall #1 seed…It's a lot better to be #1 and play the WC winner than finish #2 and have to play Games 1 and 2 @San Fran v. Cain and Bumgartner…Nats definitely need to get that #1 seed

  23. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:43 AM

    As far as Clip goes, no excuses and he needs to accept a role as a set up guy without an attitude about it, not that he would have any room to have one.Could have been the same result if he were the set-up guy. Its not about his role … its finding out what's going on, if there's a physical problem, and then attempting to fix it.

  24. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:44 AM

    Peric… you may be right about an injury. The pitch I have not seen Clip throw in the past month is the rising fast ball. That is one of his best weapons. Any one else notice that?

  25. DWS - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:46 AM

    mick, you know he would. Small margin of error.

  26. Manassas Nats' Fan - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:47 AM

    EJAX was great.Go to game comments @ 934 I accurately said Nats would lose when I saw him warming up.why though not ready to replace clip faster.

  27. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:48 AM

    Why not use Garcia?Considering he's a rookie who just joined the team on September 1st I think Davey has been using him a whole heck of a lot … more than the other pitchers they brought up (Duke and Wang). Right now there are four guys with major league experience closing: Drew Storen, Tyler Clippard, and to some extent Michael Gonzalez and Sean Burnett. After that you have guys who were great closers in AAA … in fact they were lights out: Mattheus and Garcia. Clipp was looking a bit like H-Rod with that wild pitch after the first run had scored. Maybe some folks will cut H-Rod a break when they look at Clipp's ERA tomorrow.

  28. SonnyG10 - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:49 AM

    DWS said… Unbelievable. Thought they would win them all? Be happy their where they are…Not many fans can enjoy that. Speaking from experience.September 21, 2012 10:28 PM No, I don't expect them to win them all, but I do expect them to win when we're the home team and have the lead going into the ninth inning. When the other team kicks our ass, I don't mind that loss as much as I do when I feel we give a winnable game away.There were some good things that happened tonight. The defense was stellar for the most part (except for the passed ball in the ninth by Flores). Harper's throws were outstanding and that double play by Desi and Espi were awesome.I'll get over my anger. I just want them to win the Eastern division so bad.

  29. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:50 AM

    Swift Eagle I have a different take on that in that I would like to be the #2 seed and play Giants and let Reds slug it out with Braves verse Cards/Brewers/Phillies winner (by the way, the race for the last wild card is exciting and I bet it comes down to last games). I think Reds would have a tough time and that means we would have home field in the NLCS, if Cards/Brewers/Phillies winner advanced.I know you have to play them some time, i would rather the Nats get as many post season games as possible in 2012 for the long term, even if it meant we did bot have home field in the NLCS.

  30. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:50 AM

    Peric… you may be right about an injury. The pitch I have not seen Clip throw in the past month is the rising fast ball.Its been getting hit … or called for a ball. He's been using the changeup more. Again, its up to Davey and Cat to figure out what's wrong because clearly Clipp isn't talking.

  31. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:51 AM

    If Clippard is injured, wouldn't Johnson know that? Except for his whip, which is strangely good this season, not counting tonight's stats, Clippard is having his 4th best season with the Nats. Relievers don't pitch that many innings to begin with and it is a bit hard to tell what is real and what is noise, but I just don't see him as the caliber of closer that a team at the Nats level pretends to be.

  32. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:53 AM

    I'll get over my anger. I just want them to win the Eastern division so bad.Its almost a foregone conclusion that they will at this point. Now its time to worry about whether they will be ready for what's next.And what's next means a short season in potentially very cold weather, at times, with a smaller pitching rotation (3-4) and lots of relievers. Those relievers will be CRITICAL to success during that stage. Far more so than during the regular season.Now is the time to find out who is ready, and who is not.To rest those who need it, and figure out any lingering problems now before that second season starts.

  33. Manassas Nats' Fan - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:53 AM

    Heard someone talking to Phil Wood about Clip and self esteem. That is silly if self esteem is that fragile he has bigger problems.

  34. PChuck - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:55 AM

    >>Davey said he didn't want to use Drew 3 days in a row<<I'm sure Christian Garcia was available. Clearly Stammen was because he went to him after Clippard's implosion.There were options other than Clippard that could have been used tonight.

  35. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:56 AM

    Unless a guy is a "choker", statistically, it is hard to see any difference between a closer and a set-up man.In my opinion, the whole point of a closer is that it is a competition among the team's relievers. The best reliever gets to be closer and potentially, earn the most money. Otherwise, yes, the 7th and the 8th are no different from the 9th.

  36. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:57 AM

    Heard someone talking to Phil Wood about Clip and self esteem. I don't think that's a problem with any Nats reliever with the exception of H-Rod. And we've been over that.Morse has that issue. As does Corey Brown. Flores. Get used to the new call-ins from the "Bandwagon" with Kornheiser at the wheel.

  37. Swift Eagle - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:57 AM

    Haha Mick, then I guess you must be glad the Nats have been losing lately! They're on their way to the #2 Seed…I think San Fran with great pitching, a huge (cold and windy) ballpark, and very loud fans is one of the few real home field advantage in MLB…Besides, the WC winner will likely have to burn their #1 starter in the WC game, meaning he would not be available until a game at Nats Park (Game 3 or 4)…I'm still really hoping for that #1 Seed…We have the X, the Y will be here soon, but I Want the Z

  38. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:58 AM

    Self-Esteem, hmmm? Clippard has the strangest mannerisms on the mound that I have seen since maybe Kent Tekulve. He is just sort of bizarre looking out that. If you are getting the guys out, it works. If you are blowing saves, that whole Pee Wee Herman schtick gets tiresome quickly. In a close game, the last thing I want to see is a guy with a bizarre pitching motion, wearing gogles, unless he is lights out.

  39. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:59 AM

    Peric I agree, I think Nats will win East, the question is, how are they playing entering post season? I have a feeling that this is where Nats fans will see the value of having a Werth, Tracy, Jackson, M Gonzalez, DeRosa and LaRoche. The common denominator is that they all have valuable post season experience. Their presence alone could be enough to get this team deep in the playoffs, especially Werth who can mentor Bryce, Desi, and Espi

  40. DWS - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:59 AM

    SonnyG10, that's the reason for this game. Davey's going to see and watch what he has going forward. Just my opinion but he's been there done that.Mind you I could be wrong. Just an opinion, you know.

  41. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:00 AM

    In my opinion, the whole point of a closer is that it is a competition among the team's relievers. The best reliever gets to be closer and potentially, earn the most money. Otherwise, yes, the 7th and the 8th are no different from the 9th.There are a lot of GM's who share your opinion. In point-of-fact Bowden was one … but Davey taught him how to build a bullpen … as JimBo the leather pants Segway rider openly admits.There are roles for relievers. Knowing those roles helps a pitcher prepare physically, but especially mentally. When they don't know their role, and know they can thrown into the mix wherever and whenever? How would that work on your job dude? Davey knows what he's doing. His record proves it. Sheesh.

  42. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:01 AM

    DWS… good point and lets remember 1986 when Davey was dealing with a couple of 20-21 year olds in Gooden and Strawberry.

  43. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:03 AM

    Also, in that 1986 series, Manager McNamar of the Red Sox did not deal with a young relief pitcher who could have been great very well, his name was Calvin Shilradi. The young man closed very well in the ALCS verse angels that year and I felt as many did was put under too much pressure in the World Series. Of course if Buckner makes the play,this young man's career could have lasted longer

  44. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:04 AM

    Their presence alone could be enough to get this team deep in the playoffs, especially Werth who can mentor Bryce, Desi, and EspiNope. That's the regular season Mick. As you saw tonight, 2-1 into the ninth … if Storen had come in perhaps they win? The key to the playoffswill be pitching … but most especially relief pitching. They're only going to have 3-4 starters … and given that Detwiler has pitched in relief? The pen is what Davey needs to set up for the playoffs. He has his starters lined up. Gio, Zimmnn, and Jackson plus Detwiler.

  45. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:04 AM

    I don't doubt that Johnson knows his job. I honestly think he put he out there tonight thinking that it was a win-win proposition. If Clippard saves the game, it is obviously good and if Clippard blows the game, (and let's face it, he didn't just blow it, he blew it monumentally) Johnson can dump him as closer with no controversy either in the media or among the team. Even the announcers were essentially setting us up for that at the end of the game, as they sort of thanked Clippard for his past efforts but intimated that it was time for him to go as closer.

  46. DWS - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:05 AM

    They will win the East. Then it will get interesting.

  47. ExposedinDC - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:05 AM

    Big game tommorow for sure, no time for a losing streak, it's time for our stopper to be a stopper

  48. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:06 AM

    peric I totally agree with you on the pitching, I meant from the standpoint of offense, approach to the plate and poise. But, you are correct that the number one key will be pitching and bull pen

  49. DWS - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:06 AM

    And you knew Storen would close.

  50. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:07 AM

    Damn, so now Buckner is to blame for Scharaldi's lackluster career. Man, you miss one grounder in a tie game. Maybe Dukakis would have won the election in 1988 if the Red Sox had won the title in 1986. MLB saying Harper should win Rookie of the Year.

  51. mick - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:08 AM

    William O. Douglas Loeffler said…Damn, so now Buckner is to blame for Scharaldi's lackluster career. Man, you miss one grounder in a tie game. Maybe Dukakis would have won the election in 1988 if the Red Sox had won the title in 1986. ouch, lol

  52. DJB - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:08 AM

    Clip just doesn't have the "stuff" to be a lights-out closer. His pitches have very little movement. I talked with a seamhead at work who said mathematically the Nats are almost certain to win the NL East. I don't know. We have six against the Phils and three away against the Cards. After their series with the Phils, the Braves have nobody in contention. We have to split this series. We do not want to go into the final series with the Phils without the division already won. That is trouble.

  53. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:10 AM

    The Post-season is a crap-shoot. On average, the team with the worst record wins close to fifty percent of the post-season series. The Orioles from 1969 to 1971 were one of the greatest teams ever and won one World Series. Root, enjoy it and be prepared for the fact that the team with the worst record in the post-season may very well win it all as has happened over and over again.

  54. JaneB - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:11 AM

    These guys have to figure out how to beat the teams who are super motivated to win. The Phillies were fighting and they swept us. Braves swept us. We got beat in the last inning by another team that's fighting, we will be in the post season, but we have to figure this out now.My heart breaks for Clip. No one wants to do what he's done the last two outings. I hope they figure it out because we really need him to be Clip again.

  55. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:12 AM

    Houston won three out of four against the Phillies last weekend. The Nats struggled all year with Colorado and Miami. The match-ups and the basic equality among MLB players means that it means much less than one thinks regarding late-season scheduling.

  56. DWS - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:14 AM

    Clip did alright closing to start. Now the games are getting a little more serious. Also I think he has lost something off his fastball. First of the year Kemp wouldn't have caught up. Again, just an observer.

  57. SonnyG10 - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:16 AM

    DWS said… SonnyG10, that's the reason for this game. Davey's going to see and watch what he has going forward. Just my opinion but he's been there done that.Mind you I could be wrong. Just an opinion, you know. September 21, 2012 10:59 PM Hey, no problem DWS. I welcome other opinions, especially if they help me see more clearly.

  58. DWS - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:17 AM

    I'm pretty sure these guy's are motivated, JaneB. Jayson or Davey will make sure of that. Maybe even Bryce.

  59. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:21 AM

    With the exception of guys like Rivera, most relievers simply don't pitch that many innings. In six years, Clippard has pitched 350 or so innings, which is slightly more than Nolan Ryan pitched in a single season in the mid-70's. That isn't a lot to base perceptions on, short of what your eyes tell you–this guy doesn't have great stuff. Why do you think the Yankees let him go? Clippard most likely is Clippard. He is a decent reliever, nothing more and there is nothing wrong with that, but he is probably not the guy that you have great confidence in in the 9th. On the other hand, Dennis Eckersley blew big games in the post-season for the A's a couple of years after being basically perfect in the regular season. There is a huge amount of chance in baseball.

  60. DJB - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:22 AM

    Since I'm in a pissed-off mood, the failure to close games kind of reminds me of the Braves collapse of last year. They need to nip this in the bud and get Storen in and Clippard out. I hate to say this, because Clippard sounds like a real nice guy from his interviews.

  61. NatsJack in Florida - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:24 AM

    Without scrolling through all the posts, I'd like to know what was the thinking to pitch to Braun with one out, man on third, ninth inning with the lead?Andrew (formerly Anonymous8), Gonat and I were sitting together questioning that move.Anybody?

  62. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:24 AM

    I don't think anyone dislikes Clippard but Santangelo basically pinpointed the pitches to Kemp in the double-header and those were two poor pitches. He almost blew both games, not just the second one. Tonight, he was just awful, if not pathetic.

  63. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:27 AM

    Well, if you walk Braun, then a double (as opposed to a homer) puts the Brewers in the lead. Seriously, I think this was Johnson's and Rizzo's line in the sand. Either save this game with no hiccups or the Nats are moving on with another closer.This is a positive, not a negative. Storen has better stuff. Now somebody please tell me why Wang is starting on Sunday.

  64. Swift Eagle - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:27 AM

    The 2011 Braves were 9-18 in Sept. and missed the playoffs.. The 2012 Nats are already 11-8, and have already clinched the top WC…this is not a collapse…Of course, they're not playing their best, and need to pick it up in all areas if they want to advance in the playoffs, but there is NO comparison to the Braves collapse last year

  65. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:29 AM

    It is definitely not a collapse.

  66. DJB - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:32 AM

    Swift….thanks for talking me off the ledge.

  67. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:33 AM

    Without scrolling through all the posts, I'd like to know what was the thinking to pitch to Braun with one out, man on third, ninth inning with the lead?Do you put the winning run on base with a speedy guy at third, and a guy at first with 29 steals? Double steal/squeeze play with 0 outs? Clippard was already having issues with that base runner and probably the staff's propensity to allow easy steals. Flores behind the plate with passed balls hasn't been the best catcher when it comes to making base runners think twice about stealing?

  68. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:34 AM

    Clippard definitely did not deserve to be booed, if that in fact happened. I don't think his saves versus blow saves ratio is particularly good, however. Maybe somebody knows what the average ratio is, although it may not be an important stat.

  69. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:37 AM

    Well Davey made a ton of excuses for Clippard. I could be wrong but I suspect you'll see Clippard with Suzuki only from here on out. He's going to get yanked sooner before things get out of control. Storen is the closer tomorrow (and Sunday I bet). We'll see what happens with JZimm … still think a lot this is dress rehearsals for the playoffs. That's what Davey did in the beginning of the season … looks like more of the same right now …

  70. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:39 AM

    I mean, once you start using Storen as closer, that means Storen is the closer, unless he screws up. I am a believer in closer by committee, which is what Sparky Anderson did with the Reds, but most MLB have followed the La Russa model.

  71. Gonat - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:56 AM

    NatsJack in Florida said… Without scrolling through all the posts, I'd like to know what was the thinking to pitch to Braun with one out, man on third, ninth inning with the lead?Andrew (formerly Anonymous8), Gonat and I were sitting together questioning that move.Anybody? September 21, 2012 11:24 PM ___________________________________The highlight of the game was hanging with NatsJack and Andrew and MicheleS and boo'ing down the vendor on the right-field line trying to start the wave. As far as the game goes, where was the offense after the 1st inning?Kudo to Aoki for bunting himself on to start the 9th and put the pressure on Clip.Bryce didn't put the pressure on the shakey Axford. Axford doesn't throw many strikes as you saw again tonight.

  72. NatsLady - Sep 22, 2012 at 4:15 AM

    Just got back from the game. Here are my observations.(1) You are not going to win a lot of games scoring only 2 runs. No runs, not even a serious threat, after the first inning. (2) Bryce Harper was great in the outfield. Not so great at bat. (3) Edwin Jackson is a CLASS ACT. Sign him tomorrow for however much he wants. After Clippard blew his game, Jackson gave him the man-hug. Randy Knorr, Bo Porter and a couple of the players gave him the butt pats. (4) I've watched Clip for years. I could tell when he was warming up he didn't have his fastball. (And I was sitting in Sec 303.) My opinion is that his shoulder is barking. He would probably benefit from sitting for a few days as Burnett did. He had some bad luck, yes, but he also gave up two solid hits and a fly ball that scraped the scoreboard. I'm starting to hate this whole "closer" thing. Davey should be able to just put Stammen in for the 9th inning. Stammen hadn't pitched since Sunday and is perfectly capable (mentally and stuffwise) of pitching a clean inning.(5) I don't understand where the other 10,000 people were. I've heard and understood all the excuses but, seriously, why wasn't it a sellout?To the person who asked,Clip got some mild boos when he made the WP and gave up the hits, but I think it was more out of frustration than animosity. He wasn't booed when he walked off. Edwin probably could have gone CG but he was at 106 pitches, so I understand Davey's reasoning. He wanted an insurance run for Clip. And, finally, most importantly– (6) This was the BEST possible result, even better than winning the game because ATL lost, giving us -1 on the magic number Phillies won, but since we didn't beat MIL, they didn't gain in the WC (and I really don't want them to be the WC). CIN lost, so we didn't lose anything in the -z race. Dodgers won and STL lost, so the WC race is still tight and all the teams in it (MIL, StL, LA, and Filly) have to play every game as if it's the last game and wear out all their resources!!!Remember, a tie for the second WC would be great. a 3 or 4 way tie would be terrific. You people who are worried about the division, just think this way. If we win 4 games of the next 11, and ATL loses 3 of their 10, we are set. Winning Gio's 20th tomorrow is step one.

  73. Manassas Nats' Fan - Sep 22, 2012 at 4:16 AM

    I have watched about 15 Brewer camed ghe last minth and a half. I started yelling watch for bunt but alas Zim didnt hear me.My biggest gripe was Stammen didnt come in until Nats were behind.As soon as Aoki scored Clippard should have been history.As for the booing there was lots. Lets see in the last 14 days Clip has lost ghree games. Seems had he won those 3 heprobably wouldnt be booed. I could be wrong.

  74. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 4:35 AM

    Why wasn't a sell-out? For the obvious reasons: 1. The Stadium is difficult to get to for people who live in Montgomery, Frederick and Howard counties. They should have knocked down RFK and used the site, or built near the site of old Griffith Park.2. This is a town of people who are used to rooting for the Orioles for at least 30 years and many of them like both teams. This is not the normal situation where Mets fans hate the Yankees or Cubs fans hate the White Sox. I like the Orioles and love the Nats and many people in Maryland are even more ambivalent. 3. DC is much safer now but people are still leery of Southeast Washington, especially at night, not to mention that there is no Metro service guaranteed.4. The food and drink prices are outrageous for people with families.5. The stadium is full of incessant, extraneous noise that has nothing to do with baseball, from the wave, to walk-up music to "the Final Countdown" music. It is almost impossible to even listen to the baseball broadcast on a portable radio.

  75. NatsLady - Sep 22, 2012 at 4:42 AM

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  76. NatsLady - Sep 22, 2012 at 12:48 AM

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  77. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 4:48 AM

    How do the same conditions on Saturday nights apply? That is a ludicrous question. First of all, getting in and out isn't an issue on the weekends since time is not of the essence and traffic is much less. Second, they tend to have special family promotions on the weekends that take some of the sting out of the incredible food prices. Third, most of the weekend games are day games, which makes people feel more secure about crossing the river. Walking back to ten dollar parking at night is not the most fun experience about a Nats game.

  78. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 4:53 AM

    If I am going to seal my head in with headphones then why should I bother being there. I can't hear the crack of the bat or the other sounds of baseball. You are making the case yourself, very well in fact, for the fans who love the Nats but seldom go. Ironic, isn't it?

  79. NatsLady - Sep 22, 2012 at 5:08 AM

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  80. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Sep 22, 2012 at 5:22 AM

    Ad hominem attack earns you 0 points. Thank you for playing, however.

  81. NatsLady - Sep 22, 2012 at 5:27 AM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  82. NatsLady - Sep 22, 2012 at 5:49 AM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  83. Unknown - Sep 22, 2012 at 6:14 AM

    Mick & William O I have to set some things straight.Schiraldi & Buckner – Bob Stanley was in the game and he wild-pitched in the tying run BEFORE Buckner's error. All Billy Buck would have done by making the play was prolong the game. Stanley is the real goat for the 2-strike WP to Mookie.On the ballpark — it is SAFE there – anyone leery is just uninformed. Metro is fine unless the game goes late & there's plenty of parking. You can bring you own food or eat a few blocks away (or buy & bring everything but the drinks) at 5 Guys. Only drinks allowed are bottled water.Anyone not going just doesn't really want to or isn't a baseball or Nats fan. The park is the most accessible, affordable one in baseball. $10 for a good seat. Can't get that most anywhere else.

  84. MicheleS - Sep 22, 2012 at 11:53 AM

    Wow? Really you all feel unsafe going to a game? I am I single girl and go by myself a few times a year – and yes night games. I park in the neighborhood either in a lot or by the meters(meters are CHEAP). I will take metro once in a blue moon (coming in from Ashburn, it's easier to drive). I always leave with the crowd and have never not felt safe. I also bring water in and I also will either eat before I go, or indulge in a hot dog (I have to do that less – my waistline can't take it much more). I may pay a little more for tickets, but I have sat in all the upper deck areas and those seats are very affordable and not a bad seat up there.

  85. MicheleS - Sep 22, 2012 at 12:01 PM

    And I also have a portable radio, it's a cheapy, and may have a reception problem once in while, but I can hear it just fine. Ooo and I go on weeknights too.But to each his/her own. I know a lot of folks who like to watch most sporting events at home.

  86. natsfan1a - Sep 22, 2012 at 1:15 PM

    imho, neither I nor anybody else owes an explanation/justification as to why we are not at every home game, but I will say this about that blanket generalization: with all due respect, horse hockey. That is all.Anyone not going just doesn't really want to or isn't a baseball or Nats fan.

  87. Joe Seamhead - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:20 PM

    Unknown said:"Anyone not going just doesn't really want to or isn't a baseball or Nats fan."That's more then a little harsh.By the end of the regular season my wife and I will have attended over 30 games. It's not easy on us as we make a 60 mile round trip to go. Metro is not a practical way for us to go.We're not rich, nor are we spring chickens.For the past two years we have made the decision to forgotaking a vacation because we'd rather spend what time and funds we have on going to the games.I spent many evening driving 30 miles in rush hour, after working construction all day,stayed for the whole game, and then driven home very late. We can't go tonight, or tomorrow. Sorry, we're just not real fans.Who are you, Unknown, to make such a stupid statement?

  88. DJB - Sep 22, 2012 at 2:41 PM

    I haven't been able to make it to many games. I have three kids, one of which is special needs. That doesn't mean I'm any less of a fan. Baseball fans are an idiosyncratic bunch. I guess because the sport is defined by failure more than success, fandom is put under a lot of pressure to demonstrate their bona fides. If the Nats win, there will be more than enough fans in this market. The fear is what happens if they don't win for an extended period. We need to deal with our indentured servitude to MASN and Angelos to address that long-term. Washington is a much larger market than Baltimore. Taks Angelos to court, but we need a greater share of revenues.

  89. peric - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:12 PM

    1. The Stadium is difficult to get to for people who live in Montgomery, Frederick and Howard counties. They should have knocked down RFK and used the site, or built near the site of old Griffith Park.Dealing with the Federal government, federal land, the folks who are worried about toxic waste from that stadium etc? Nope. They did the right thing, the city built it in the right place in an area that sorely needed renewal from its precipitous fall after the MLK riots ruined it. The city just needs to find ways to make it more accessible. And as the new development continues (as MicheleS linked to) that will happen. The city needs to benefit from this team as well. Lord knows they don't get anything from the deadskins in PG County. Of all the places to put a stadium … Cooke definitely wasn't thinking straight at that stage in his life … fortunately that's not the case with Ted Lerner.

  90. Manassas Nats' Fan - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:19 PM

    Fans are not restricted to those who go. I go more than some less than others but doesnt make me more or less of a fan.Being right on metro is grest but makes for a longer trio.I go now with an old high school buddy who loves to drive. I can usually back to Manassas about 60 minutes after we get to car.

  91. Joe Seamhead - Sep 22, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    peric, we don't always agree, but your last post was spot on. The stadium isn't easy for me, but where would it have been easy for everybody? It's a great stadium. As to prices, yes, you can blow a lot of dough, but they do let you bring in food, and bottle water. Drink a $5 Miller, or two, before the game, bring healthier food with you, and it's not too bad.

Archives

FINAL NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
x-WASHINGTON 96 66 --
ATLANTA 79 83 17.0
NEW YORK 79 83 17.0
MIAMI 77 85 19.0
PHILADELPHIA 73 89 23.0

NL POSTSEASON SCHEDULE

NL WILD CARD GAME
WED: Giants at Pirates, 8:07 p.m. (ESPN)

NLDS
FRI: Game 1, Pirates at Nats, 12:07 p.m.,
OR Giants at Nats, 3:07 p.m. (FS1)
SAT: Game 2, PIT/SF at Nats, 5:37 p.m. (FS1)
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OCT. 7: Game 4, Nats at PIT/SF, TBA (FS1)*
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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)...

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