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NLDS Game 4: Cardinals at Nats

Oct 11, 2012, 5:16 PM EDT

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Nationals need to win today to keep their season alive.

And so it has come to this. A Nationals team that won 98 games in the regular season now must win one game today to keep its season alive and force a winner-take-all Game 5 against the Cardinals tomorrow night. It's not a position the Nats expected to be in, but it's not one they're cowering from.

"You can't take it for granted at any time, whether you're up or down or whatever, that it's over," Davey Johnson said this morning. "That room over there, the guys I've got, they have that mindset. You take nothing for granted. We don't feel like we are out of this by a long shot, believe me."

Johnson didn't believe it was appropriate to make any changes to his lineup for this do-or-die game, but he admitted he will have a different managing strategy than he's had all year. Ross Detwiler will have a very short leash, and if the left-hander gets into any trouble early, Johnson will turn to a surprising face out of the bullpen: Jordan Zimmermann, who is available four days after throwing 63 pitches at Busch Stadium.

Johnson doesn't plan to hold any team meeting before the game, but veteran Mark DeRosa suggested last night he might have a few words for his teammates, underscoring the need to play with some urgency today. Whether any of that makes a difference on the field remains to be seen.

Either way, it's going to be an eventful late afternoon and early evening at the ballpark. If you can't attend in person, we've got you covered right here with live updates and analysis throughout…

NATIONAL LEAGUE DIVISION SERIES – GAME 4
ST. LOUIS CARDINALS at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 4:07 p.m. EDT
TV: TBS
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), WSPZ (570 AM), XM 186
Weather: Sunny, 61 degrees, Wind 6 mph out to CF

NATIONALS
RF Jayson Werth
CF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche

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200 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. NatsLady - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:27 PM

    Say what you want. I like this lineup. These are the guys who got us here, and these are the guys who (I hope) will get us THERE. Thank you, Davey, Mike Rizzo and all Nats. On my way to see you get a win!!!

  2. Faraz Shaikh - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:33 PM

    "Johnson will turn to a surprising face out of the bullpen" for a moment, I thought I was going to read SS next. LOL

  3. Section 222 - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:39 PM

    As they say, all hands on deck. At least Jim Joyce is behind the plate.If Det comes up big and the Nats win, just think how much fun reading this blog will be for the 24 hours from 8 pm tonight until 8 pm tomorrow.

  4. NatsFanGino - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:42 PM

    I hope they play with some intensity today, like they have almost all year until the last 2 games.Just need Det to put up zeroes in the first 3 innings. I will love our chances if that happensCan't wait to get to the park, Go Nats!!!

  5. Steady Eddie - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:43 PM

    Hey Nats:If the As and Giants can play and win TWO games each with their backs to the wall, you can win ONE.(Not suggesting anything about toOr row except that it would, obviously, become winner-take-all for both teams.)GYFNG!

  6. Faraz Shaikh - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:43 PM

    By the way, JZ pitched on Monday. That is not four days after. Or are we talking about GG from bullpen?

  7. Steady Eddie - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:44 PM

    "tomorrow" not "to Or row".No boat races for the Nats!

  8. NatsLady - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:46 PM

    Tyler Clippard hasn't pitched in four days. Could he go three innings? I love him, but I'd rather he blew his arm out than Stras did.

  9. Faraz Shaikh - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:49 PM

    just saw video of Nats fans leaving the game early. Unbelievable! this is postseason baseball and a day game at that. Why you leave early?

  10. Scooter - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:49 PM

    Ah, [forget] it. I'm telling the boss I'm no good to him for the rest of the day. Nats Park, here I come.

  11. DJB - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:51 PM

    I've watched every game but five this season. Made my wife, who hates baseball, angry. But I will sit this one out.GYFNG! Go Nats!

  12. Section 3, My Playoffs Sofa - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:52 PM

    On my way, metro, plenty of red here

  13. bowdenball - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:59 PM

    Detwiler's second-half surge coincided with a sharp increase in his ground ball rate. If he's going to pitch like that today you need your best defensive infield out there, and that means Espinosa. I think it's the right move to start him. What a joy this season has been. Thanks to the team and to Mark for the coverage and this forum for discussion. I hope it's not over in six hours. But even if it is, it's still been the most enjoyable season of DC baseball in our lifetimes.

  14. JaneB - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:07 PM

    My back is killing me. Makes my whole body hurt. I know it makes sense to hand off my ticket to on elf my kids. But instead I'm sitting in the parking lot staying warm, waiting to go in to see Game 4. I predict Det has It today. I really would have put Lombo instead of Espi. But I'm not Davey. What could Mark DeRosa have to say that they don't already know? GYFNG! I may nit be jumping up for you today, but my voice is just as loud as ever.

  15. Mac Guire - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:09 PM

    No matter what the outcome is today, I will be totally content with what this team showed this year. However, today's lineup gives me a sinking feeling like every time I see Danny K Espinosa comes up to bat.

  16. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:10 PM

    Re Lombo vs. Espinosa. You can't make that switch today. You played Espinosa over Lombo the entire 2nd half because Espi is better than Lombo. If you go out you go out but you can't go out without the players who got you 98 wins.

  17. SCNatsFan - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:11 PM

    Some guys need to show up today. All season long I've been vocal about Espinosa and how he is the weak link on this team; would love nothing more then for him to show up today and prove someone like me wrong.All starts with Detwiler. This is where he makes his bones into being a trusted member of the rotation vs. a placeholder for guys progressing thru the minors.To those going, enjoy the game. Hopefully we get to use the game 5 tickets.

  18. SCNatsFan - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:12 PM

    NatsLady I can't see Clip going three; by the third I would predict long ball after long ball. Lets hope he just throws the 8th turning it over to Storen for the save.

  19. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:13 PM

    Mac Guire, You wait and see; Espi will be next year's Desi. This time last year many of us (including me) were saying that Desi will always be a poor OBP player and an over all below average player; now he is the best SS in the NL.

  20. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:16 PM

    Detwiler needs to pitch well; it doesn't matter for how long or the pitch count; if he gives us 4 strong innings and keeps us in the game we can have JZIM go 2 or (or even 3 each) and then hand it off to Clippard (maybe for 2) and Storen. I expect Davie to manage very aggressively today; leave nothing in reserve.

  21. MicheleS - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:17 PM

    GO BATS! GO DET! GYFNG!

  22. Section 222 - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:17 PM

    I stayed for the whole game, but I'm sorry, no team that is down 8-0 and hitting the way the Nats have in this series has a right to insist that its fans stay till the last out. If some fans decided yesterday that the benefit of getting a jump on the rush hour traffic outweighed the cost of possibly missing a historic comeback, I'm not going to argue with them.Do better today and the fans will stay to the bitter end, that's for sure.

  23. BigCat - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:20 PM

    Ok Det….pound that 2 seamer on the knees. Yes, the Cards can hit, but a 94-95 runner on the knees is tough. And this is critical….you gotta stay ahead in the count. Go get em big guy!But with all the talk about the Cards hitting…WE DIDN'T SCORE YESTERDAY!! We would of lost to the Cubbies. Today's a new day. Hitters gotta get a little swagger. Beast goin yard twice today. We win 6-5!!

  24. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:21 PM

    Just listened to Danny Rouhier on Espinosa/Lombo. I wish he would post here.Also, unnamed GM and executive of another team bashing the Nats. Really.

  25. Mac Guire - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:21 PM

    @JDI know the ups and downs Desi went through since he came up to the majors. However, what happened this year to him is basically him putting together his offensive production from 2010 and defense from 2011, which Rizzo envisioned last year.Would it happend to Espi? I doubt it. I never seen a high-K guy drastically cut down on Ks. How can someone be a great baseball player when he has hard times making contact with the baseball?

  26. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:22 PM

    Giants up 1-0 in the 5th

  27. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:22 PM

    Sec 222, I'm with you. You buy your ticket and you get to leave whenever you want. I am not into lecturing fans on how to react to the game situation (as long as they don't do the wave).

  28. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:23 PM

    Ghost,Wow; that would be quite the collapse by the Reds; wouldn't it?

  29. JaneB - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:23 PM

    I heard the same thing, Ghost. Incredible. I don't even understand what the Nats did to deserve that kind of venom. Sheessh!

  30. A DC Wonk - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:26 PM

    Steve wrote:Its hard to believe that Edwin didn't see his success inside in the strike zone as he was killed on the outside of the strike zoneWasn't the homer from their #8 hitter in the second inning off of a called outside pitch that wandered inside a bit?

  31. Cwj - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:26 PM

    Who bashed the Nats??

  32. A DC Wonk - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:26 PM

    I'm leaving now to the game . . . I hope to be at the 312 tables by 3:30!GYFNG!

  33. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:27 PM

    Giants up 2-0 on a Cozart error

  34. Cwj - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:28 PM

    I have a good feeling about this game. But win or lose, its been a fun ride.Go Nats!

  35. Swift Eagle - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:32 PM

    I heard it too, I had to just turn it off…MLB radio was quoting "anon. MLB front office people" saying they didn't care who won the WS as long as it wasn't the Nats…They say The Shutdown disrespects how hard it is to get to postseason…blah, blah blahFunny how the Nats are the villains for protecting their young arms…While the Cubs are "loveable" after destroying their phenoms…Such a tired topicGYFNG!!!!

  36. Swift Eagle - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:33 PM

    Grand Salami for Posey! 6-0

  37. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:34 PM

    Posey Grand Slam 6-0.

  38. Section 3, My Playoffs Sofa - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:34 PM

    You can't hurry love … http://bit.ly/RRFCgF

  39. peric - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    Bam Bam SMASH!

  40. Cwj - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    Just read about it.Man, some GMs are jealous, it would seem. I wonder which GMs are quoted? Anyone know, so I can root against their team? :D

  41. Section 3, My Playoffs Sofa - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    Humm baby!

  42. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    Attaboy Dusty. Wait until all the horses have escaped and then lock the barn.

  43. peric - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:36 PM

    Hmmm another Series by the bay in the offing? They are also predicting another major earthquake is due. What are the possibilities?

  44. Swift Eagle - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:36 PM

    StL has decided to play their outfielders very deep, taking away gaps and forcing the Nats to get 3 singles in the same inning in order to score a run…Hopefully the Nats make the adjustment….Or just hit a few into the Red Porch!GYFNG!

  45. Drew - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:37 PM

    Sweet, fancy Posey!

  46. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:37 PM

    Swift, yah, quite the interview. I don't care really. It all has to do with Rizzo's relationship with Boras and that Strasburg is a Boras client.As long as the Nats aren't cheating, F 'em.

  47. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:38 PM

    I bet you dollars to doughnuts that the unnamed exec works for a team that's watching the playoffs on TV. If I was Rizzo I would advise everyone to revisit the discussion several years down the line when Stras is in the process of pitching in the playoffs year after year. Or better still he should tell them to stick it where the sun don't shine.

  48. peric - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:39 PM

    I doubt it. I never seen a high-K guy drastically cut down on Ks. How can someone be a great baseball player when he has hard times making contact with the baseball? Then you obviously and clearly haven't been watching? Maybe you were watching the O's or the Yankees etc?See Desmond, Ian last year versus this year. See Desmond, Ian quotes by Frank Robinson and Tony La Russa about Ian.Bye Bye.

  49. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:39 PM

    Reds go up 2 in San Fran and all the geniuses proclaimed the Reds the champs.Dusty wishes he could get Game 3 back.

  50. peric - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:41 PM

    The keys to a win are still Werth followed by Harper and Detwiler.

  51. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:42 PM

    JD, it's the Braves I believe. Who cares. They are always whining about something.It just tells you they are worried. If some high tech person can't post a link to the 1:45 Ken Rosenthal interview on 106.7 it would be great.

  52. JaneB - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:43 PM

    Even 2 games down is doable GYFNG!

  53. Swift Eagle - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:46 PM

    Funny, after all the years of wishing the Nats were relevant enough to be discussed on our local football (er.."Sports") media and a national level, now that they are paying attention, they spew such nonsense that I just turn it off…I guess irony can be pretty ironic sometimes…

  54. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:46 PM

    Reds have a chance to get back into it. Dusty left Latos in 2 batters too long.

  55. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:47 PM

    Ghost, JZimm isn't a Boras client and Rizzo treated him exactly the same way; he is nothing if not consistent. He sat down Meyer and he will bring Purke,Solis and Giolito back very gradually. That's team philosophy and it makes sense and no one least of all other teams execs should have an opinion we should consider.

  56. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:49 PM

    The Giants have no chance. For them to win, they would need to win three straight games on the road. That is impossible, isn't it? I mean home field advantage is all but insurmountable, right?But assuming they do, what happened to the Reds? Everyone said they were playing great ball in San Fran. Why did the Reds just stop playing great ball? Was it lack of pride? Lack of experience? Lack of pitching? Lack of hitting? Just bad luck?

  57. Feel Wood - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:49 PM

    I have no problem with fans leaving early yesterday. However, if today turns out the same as yesterday no one has any excuse for leaving early. It's an elimination game. Even if your team gets eliminated you should stay til the bitter end out of respect for them giving you the opportunity to be there at all.

  58. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:49 PM

    Swift, they did the same to Tampa. It's all about Boras and the Nats are the new kids on the block.

  59. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:51 PM

    Ghost, Handling starting pitchers isn't Dusty's strongest trait. Ask the Cubs fans.

  60. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:54 PM

    JD, yah, no doubt on Dusty.The microphone behind homeplate is picking up all the curse words. A lot of potty mouths in Cincinnati.

  61. Swift Eagle - Oct 11, 2012 at 6:54 PM

    haha..it's OK Steve, it's not TV, it's TBS…

  62. Faraz Shaikh - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:16 PM

    What is Bochy doing now? Isn't this a must win game?

  63. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:21 PM

    Swift, TBS and TNT are Turner=Braves.

  64. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:23 PM

    Jay Bruce caught stealing 3rd. Are you kidding me

  65. BigCat - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:25 PM

    Davey can't wait long with Det if he's a deer in the headlights again.

  66. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:29 PM

    Bottom of 7. 6-3

  67. bluejeener - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:33 PM

    My head hurts. Mostly from anxiety. Does anyone know how long during a game that standing room tix are on sale? Not for today, but I would LOVE to see tomorrow's.

  68. rabbit34 - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:37 PM

    Stay as long as you can. Most likely, this is the last game. Fans should stay until the bottom of the fifth, an official game. After that, you can officially leave. No excuse needed. Good luck Nats!!!

  69. natscan reduxit - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:43 PM

    … on leaving early: The year was 1956; I was ten years old and visiting my relations in the Boston States. In those years, I was smack dab in the midst of growing up in "baseball immersion" but, living way up above and beyond Maine, had not yet had the joy of attending a 'real live MLB game'. So when I expressed my interest, my uncle and aunt took me and my sister to a night game at Fenway, centerfield pole and all…. so anyway, the Sox were playing the vaunted KC Athletics and were losing 10-4 when the top of the seventh began. I had just settled into the action when my uncle stood up and told us all to "get ready, we're leaving". "What d'ya mean? The game's not over yet." I thought maybe he was ticked off that Boston was behind, and wanted to avoid any more 'disgrace'. But that wasn't the reason. It was because my relatives lived down on the cape, and he said "we have to get on the road before the game ends or it'll take us three times as long to get home". We listened to the end of the game on the car radio, driving south…. next time I was at Fenway, I was twenty six, and I stayed to the bitter end (bitter because the Red Sox won that day, and I had long since seen the light).Go Nats!! right up to the end of the game!

  70. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:45 PM

    6-3 and 2 on with 2 outs and Ludwick up.

  71. Dave - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:46 PM

    Interesting piece in SI this afternoon regarding Cardinals loving the Fastball.http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/ben_reiter/10/10/nlds-cardinals-nationals-game-3-fastball/index.html?eref=sihp&sct=hp_t11_a2Wasn't Detwiler hurling fastballs at an 90-95% clip during his last month of starts?Does not sound too promising.

  72. CN - Oct 11, 2012 at 7:57 PM

    I'm tivo'ing the game, anyone know which channel the game will start while the Reds-Giants game finishes up? I'm assuming TNT… thanks in advance.

  73. waddu eye no - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:02 PM

    cn – tntgyfng

  74. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:04 PM

    Strange play. check swing ball goes into the Giants dugout and in Affeldt trying to avoid getting hit falls down the back stairs.

  75. NatsJack in Florida - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:04 PM

    Here's to barreling up a bunch of Kyle Lohse pitches early.

  76. RickH - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:12 PM

    THAT'S what I'm talking about!!! Way to go, Ross!

  77. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:13 PM

    Way to start, Ross!!! Are the Gisnts going to knock out the Reds???

  78. Dave - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:15 PM

    I am stuck in my classroom doing plans for tomorrow and grading a test. I resisted putting the game on, but I'm listening to the 106.7 feed right now.Surprising how hard it was today to talk about yesterday's game. I really, really hope the boys manage to get the bat on the ball and move some runners around the bases today. Hard to believe they could not score a single run on Wednesday.So there seem to be two of us Daves on here. This is Dave-the-German-teacher who sits in 313. By the way, we were all set to get the whole infield rocking yesterday with the N-A-T-S cheer yesterday. Of course, there was not a SINGLE chance to do it in a shutout.Hope I hear all of you Insiders joining in on that sucker about 8 or 10 times today.

  79. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:16 PM

    Sorry to hear about your back, JaneB. Stretch your hamstring muscle on both legs (lie flat on ground, raise 1 leg straight and hold for 30-60 seconds. Then do same with the other leg.In a day or two, this might help. Hamstring muscles often pull on the lower back muscles. It's all related.See you tomorrow, and we'll discuss.GYFNG!!!

  80. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:17 PM

    Jayson– ugh. Watching pitches, then when he is behind? Well, you know. Where is that hot 300 hitter???

  81. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:20 PM

    One ugly at bat after another. Won't matter a luck what Ross does .

  82. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:22 PM

    Dave- more of the same, I fear.

  83. Sj - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:22 PM

    The 2nd inning: Our Achilles Heel.

  84. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:24 PM

    The Legion Of Doom out already.

  85. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:29 PM

    Ghost – not usually, just frustrated with our offense right now. Will try to be more positive. Crowd is loud!!

  86. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:33 PM

    Baseballswami, give it time. Outside pitch already iffy with Mr. Non-Perfect Jim Joyce.

  87. Dave - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:33 PM

    Nah, I think they pull it out today, swami! Keep a good thought.The crowd sounds like about 100,000 people on the radio.

  88. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:34 PM

    Did you see Detwiler pitching outside with a few inside jams. Early on the Cardinals aren't reaching.

  89. Manassas Nats' Fan - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:35 PM

    Det doing fine. Hitters need to get their act together.

  90. Manassas Nats' Fan - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:37 PM

    Laroche hits plus harpers hits = Chris Carpenter's hit. @2

  91. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:37 PM

    LaRoche has one hit all series. That is just depressing.

  92. Manassas Nats' Fan - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:38 PM

    Time to rock and roll

  93. Dave - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:38 PM

    Adam. La. Roche.Thank you, Adam. Now let's hear that cheer!

  94. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:38 PM

    ALR !!!

  95. RickH - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:39 PM

    ALR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  96. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:39 PM

    Make that two!!!!!!!!

  97. RickH - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:39 PM

    JD … I would owe you a coke, but I had more exclamation marks.

  98. NatsJack in Florida - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:39 PM

    One barrel up for Adam LaRoche.

  99. Manassas Nats' Fan - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:40 PM

    The third inning will be big for Det.

  100. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    Will Danny be an automatic third out?? Some harder contact going on here. BABIP was unkind to Desi.

  101. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:44 PM

    Baseballswami, as my message at 4:33. Give it time.

  102. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:44 PM

    Oh, yeah. Just watched it right into the glove.

  103. Manassas Nats' Fan - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:46 PM

    When is Espi going to cut rhe Ks out it beyond rediculus. For someone with lrss than 40 HR he has at least twice to many Ks and it seems no one is working to fix it.

  104. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:46 PM

    Ghost- I hear you, I really do,but Danny- oh Danny. He is making it real tough.

  105. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:46 PM

    BABIP very unkind there to Desi. Freese also in perfect position.

  106. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    Swami, my thoughts on Danny hasn't changed since Spring Training.

  107. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:49 PM

    cmon Det, Pete effen Kosma?

  108. SCNatsFan - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:50 PM

    Ghost, mine have. Watching him not learn a thing at the plate for another year downgreades him.But…. we are in the lead! Positive vibes! Espi will break out today.

  109. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:50 PM

    Suzuki hurt.

  110. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:52 PM

    E6 Desi. Man on third– no help for Det here. Can't catch a break in this series.

  111. Manassas Nats' Fan - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:52 PM

    What is Det thinking. We need a shut down inning and he walks the number 8 batter then a sac bunt then desmond scrrws up in rge field. that is why you can never ever give up a walk to a teamIt is not rocket science yet to ofyen our pitchers are clueless.

  112. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:54 PM

    Can't give that run tight back. Two plays of shoddy defense. Help Ross out, please. Cards playing small ball here. Successfully.

  113. Manassas Nats' Fan - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:54 PM

    Unearned run and Harper makes that same mistake that he is done all season and throw to the wrong base.If they want to win 3 of the 9 player did plays that would indicate the opposite.

  114. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:56 PM

    Darn leadoff walks

  115. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:57 PM

    2 defensive misplays. I know he walked the 8 hitter, but those two plays killed it. You just can't let them answer right back. Offense- please get it together.

  116. Manassas Nats' Fan - Oct 11, 2012 at 8:58 PM

    We have played so unlike a 98 win team. Too msny fundimental mistakes.

  117. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:01 PM

    Reds threatening bottom nine.

  118. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:07 PM

    Giants knocked off the Reds . That really surprised me. Won three in Cincy. Of course, my own team surprised me, too. I really thought they would play better and the games would be closer. You never know once you get to the post season. Anything can happen.

  119. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:14 PM

    4 strong innings from Det. We gotta start scoring soon !!

  120. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:15 PM

    JD–so true.

  121. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:21 PM

    In this series we just don 't seem to be able to move a runner over.

  122. SCNatsFan - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:25 PM

    We have no chance if Morse, Espi, Harper et al continue to be automatic outs. Automatic easy outs too.

  123. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:26 PM

    swami, That's not our game. The problem is that Harper,Morse,Espinosa and Suzuki are not hitting at all and Werth isn't hitting much.

  124. SCNatsFan - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:28 PM

    Detwiler learns nothing. This team isn't playing well enough to win.

  125. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:28 PM

    Is Kozma really Kemp?

  126. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:29 PM

    I think moving a runner over should always be a part of your game. Walked the 8 hitter again. Repeat performance. I know Ross thought he wasn't getting calls, but pitch track showed they were balls.

  127. RickH - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:30 PM

    Nice play, Adam!

  128. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:33 PM

    Way to go, Ross!!!!!!!! Nicely done.

  129. Scott Margenau - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:33 PM

    Nice!!

  130. rogieshan - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:35 PM

    Koczma aside, Detwiler has mixed up his pitches well. But we can't win just on solo homers.

  131. NatsJack in Florida - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:35 PM

    Ross has done his job. Espinosa, Werth, Bryce, and Morse haven't.

  132. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:36 PM

    Swami, We aren't gonna bunt or hit and run with ALR, Morse etc. we haven't done it all year. We just have to hit. I would watch Det very carefully, it's the 3rd time in the order and we really can't afford to fall behind.

  133. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:40 PM

    Stammen warming. Every day. Maybe someone else?? Or let Ross continue?? Our hitters looked even worse this inning. So much for seeing the guy a few times and adjusting. Det did well. This is all on the hitters. And I don 't mean Bryce– the others should know better.

  134. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:41 PM

    4 pitch inning by Lohse. Way to work him.

  135. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:42 PM

    This inning scares me.

  136. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:46 PM

    Ghost– I know. No discipline at the dish.

  137. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:47 PM

    JD – me, too.

  138. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:49 PM

    Do not pitch to Freese !!

  139. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:50 PM

    Like I said earlier– no breaks for the Nats, and especially for Ross. 2 errors cost him the lead. This one may cost us the game.

  140. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:50 PM

    Zim with another shakey throw. Seen the neighborhood play not given this year on a similar play.

  141. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:50 PM

    What happened Swami? I can't watch the game (only gameday).

  142. terpman33 - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:52 PM

    Another bad throw by Zim. THIS DUDE HAS CHUCK KNOUBLACH DISEASE! Seriously, $100m for this??? Either he fixes this, or he moves to first base!!!

  143. natscan reduxit - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:53 PM

    … we're into the sixth and still tied at 1; Detwiler still on the mound but signs are that he'll be replaced soon. The game's not over yet but I simply want to say this before it's too late. Thank you to Mark Z and all the folks who make NatsInsider a reality. Sitting up here in the frozen boonies as I do, without another curly W in sight for miles (or kilometres), if NI wasn't here, I'd be lost in a wasteland where baseball means Red Sox and Yankees, and the Expos but a distant memory for even the few who remember.… NI has made it possible for me to transfer my curly M to a W and to hitch my diamond-studded wagon to one of the best teams in the show, and one of the best bunch of fans anywhere.Go Nats!! all year long!

  144. Ghost Of Steve M. - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:54 PM

    Uh, Ks DeScalso and called Ball 1 but luckily Det gets him. Difference today is moving around pitches and pitch selection. Well exexuted by Det although walking Kozma was frustrating.

  145. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:55 PM

    Ross D out of the inning. This kid had stepped up in a big way today. He should have a 1-0 lead- 2 defensive miscues in one inning for the unearned run. The Nats offense owes this kid now and they need to step up as well .Bravo, Ross!!!!!

  146. Eugene in Oregon - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:56 PM

    Ok, I haven't posted here throughout the playoffs — a combination of angst and scheduling. After a solid pitching performance by Mr. Detwiller, now's the time for the Nats hitters to step up and put some pressure on the Cardinals. Assuming Lohse's back on the mound, he should be getting tired (and the Nats have seen his stuff). Let's score some runs! GYFNG!

  147. waddu eye no - Oct 11, 2012 at 9:57 PM

    Dess rotwiler!

  148. Drew - Oct 11, 2012 at 5:57 PM

    Super job by Detwiler.Well done, Ross!

  149. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:01 PM

    No adjusting going on by our hitters. Not working the count, swinging for the fences at bad pitches. Making it easy for Lohse to cruise.

  150. Exposremains - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:01 PM

    Message to offense: Come on, already!

  151. terpman33 - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:02 PM

    You can't have the same philosophy of hacking at the first pitch in the PLAYOFFS!! THIS IS FREAKING RIDICULOUS. Our hitters can't even work a damn count. Lohse has only thrown about 76 pitches, while Det threw 104. Un Freaking Believeable!!!!!

  152. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:02 PM

    It was great to see an outstanding pitching performance by one of our starters.

  153. SCNatsFan - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:03 PM

    This makes me nervous: JZim's ERA against St L is over 9

  154. Eugene in Oregon - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:03 PM

    Swami @ 6:02 p.m.: Exactly; well said.

  155. JD - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:05 PM

    Bravo Detwiler !! Great job.

  156. Will - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:08 PM

    Where was this Zimm on Monday?!Better late than never, though.

  157. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:08 PM

    JZ was absolutely masterful!!! The very definition of a power pitcher- and he did it very short order. That was just awesome!!!! Offense, please respond!

  158. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:09 PM

    This is a new iteration….

  159. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:10 PM

    Inspiring!!! At least I hope so.

  160. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:17 PM

    2 slowest men on the face of the earth….

  161. Will - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:17 PM

    For #%##@$@ sake. Lohse just struggled to locate 5 pitches to LaRoche, and Morse swings at the first pitch?!?! What are they thinking??

  162. Scott Margenau - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:18 PM

    Morse a liability and injury prone

  163. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:18 PM

    Can you even believe Morse hit into a double play on the first pitch???? That is just not acceptable. This is how the Nsts looked against the Yankees.

  164. SCNatsFan - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:19 PM

    Mike oops Michaal Morse seems to be writing his ticket right out of town. If his hand is hurting then sit, if not then a guy who hit for a living is choking big time. Big time.

  165. Scott Margenau - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    Why take JZ out?

  166. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    Good Clip, or bad Clip??? Wishing JZim had kept pitching.

  167. Will - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    Joyce is calling everything remotely close a strike.

  168. Will - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:21 PM

    …..Except when we need it.

  169. SCNatsFan - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:21 PM

    Why use JZ for one inning? If this goes past 9 this pen will give the game away.Johnson is smarter then me but he seems to be making some questionable decisions in the post season. I guess losing does that to my opinion.

  170. Section 135 - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:22 PM

    I've been hating on Morse forever. Hope others now see what I see. Worst approach at the plate un the majors.

  171. Will - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:23 PM

    Wow, terrible calls all night from Joyce. But I'll take it (right now).

  172. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:26 PM

    Clip playing with fire.

  173. Scott Margenau - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:27 PM

    Whew. Nice job

  174. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:27 PM

    Wow. Anybody else tired of holding their breath??

  175. Will - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:29 PM

    6 Ks from last 7 Cardinals plate appearances.Now let's keep the momentum going!

  176. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:29 PM

    We need to go ahead here so Drew can be next.

  177. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:32 PM

    Fly ball, fly ball, fly ball.

  178. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:39 PM

    Our bats have ED and need baseball Viagra .

  179. rogieshan - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:44 PM

    SCNatsFan said, "Johnson is smarter then me but he seems to be making some questionable decisions in the post season."He puts faith in his players and, unfortunately, many of them are letting him down. Not much we can do when he doesn't want think outside the box.

  180. Manassas Nats' Fan - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:44 PM

    Our batters have gone dorment.

  181. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:48 PM

    Must have air….

  182. Faraz Shaikh - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:48 PM

    WOW

  183. Section 222 - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:52 PM

    I do believe the fans are sticking around for this game. Just sayin'

  184. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:55 PM

    Desi!!!!!!! Drew!!!!!!!

  185. rogieshan - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:57 PM

    If we don't win it in the bottom of the 9th, it could soon be over. We can't go deeper much into our bullpen.

  186. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:57 PM

    I was just mesmerized by the sight of Nats park, filled with standing, screaming fans at a post season game. My how things have changed in a hurry.

  187. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 10:59 PM

    Jayson Werth just looks paralyzed at the plate.

  188. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:03 PM

    omg

  189. RickH - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:04 PM

    IT AIN'T OVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  190. Eugene in Oregon - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:04 PM

    Wow.

  191. natscan reduxit - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:04 PM

    … IT WAS WELL WERTH THE WAIT!!!!!Go YF Nats!!!

  192. Will - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:05 PM

    Most epic at bat ever. 13 pitches, 387426 foul balls. Nats win!!!!!

  193. Faraz Shaikh - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:06 PM

    OMG what a win!!!

  194. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:06 PM

    Holy crap!!!!'nn Nats !!!!!!!! The stars of the game were the pitchers!!!!

  195. waddu eye no - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:06 PM

    Earned his check!!!!Gyfng

  196. baseballswami - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:08 PM

    And I take back my evil remark about you Jayson. I will happily eat that one for sure!! Ghost, I could hug you for insisting on being positive.

  197. peric - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:15 PM

    Thank god Werth came through … just what the team was looking for when they signed him on … yep, now he's definitely Werth the pay check …Now, if he and Harper can just find a way to gang up on these guys tomorrow we'll be golden. They need both to send the opposing starter scurrying.

  198. NatsJack in Florida - Oct 11, 2012 at 11:32 PM

    Anytime anyone talks about "heart" when it comes to baseball shows how little they know how this game is played.Yestersdays game has no bearing on todays and todays has no bearing on tomorrows. Ross Detwiler…..yep…..Jason Werth…greateat professional at bat I've ever seen.

  199. ehay2k - Oct 12, 2012 at 2:15 AM

    rogieshan said…Koczma aside, Detwiler has mixed up his pitches well. But we can't win just on solo homers——-Ya know, I think that maybe we can!

  200. Section 3, My Playoffs Sofa - Oct 12, 2012 at 3:13 AM

    Finally down to close enough to earth to get a wifi signal! Great crowd, great game, historic AB! Until tomorrow, at least. Great to meet up with Insiders at the game!

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB MN
WASHINGTON 85 63 -- 4
ATLANTA 75 74 10.5
MIAMI 72 76 13.0
NEW YORK 72 78 14.0
PHILADELPHIA 69 80 16.5
Through Sunday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
MON: Nats at Braves, 7:10 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Braves, 7:10 p.m.
WED: Nats at Braves, 7:10 p.m.
THU: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
FRI: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Marlins, 1:10 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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