Apr 24, 2013, 10:45 PM EDT
The Nationals didn’t just win 98 games last year and reach the postseason for the first time in club history, they did so without putting themselves through any prolonged stretch of legitimate adversity.
That may have left everyone — uniformed personnel, fans and media alike — to assume the 2013 campaign would proceed with nary a bump in the road with a roster that didn’t appear to have any true flaws cruising along toward another division title and then October success.
Three weeks in, it’s already become obvious things won’t come as easily to the Nationals this season as they did last season. After a 4-2 loss to the Cardinals on Wednesday, their fourth straight, they suddenly find themselves in a wholly unfamiliar position: Below the .500 mark, with growing questions about their ability to score enough runs to win games.
“What we’re going through, it’s the first time this team has dealt with expectations, and there’s something to be said about that,” right fielder Jayson Werth said. “But we’ll adjust. The league has adjusted to us; we’ll adjust to the league. We’ll be fine. We’ve got too much talent.”
NL EAST STANDINGS
FRI: Nats at Reds, 7:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Reds, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Reds, 1:10 p.m.
MON: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
WED: Nats at Marlins, 12:40 p.m.
Full season schedule
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.
Follow us on Twitter
- Ranking all 30 MLB ballparks
- 'Baseball in the District' - Bob Nightengale and Matt Skole
- Aaron Barrett stares down Brandon Barnes
- Depleted lineup can't complete sweep over Rockies in 6-4 loss
- Zimmerman placed on DL with hamstring strain
- Kevin Durant channels Werth, LaRoche in 'beard gang' photo
- Strasburg tries to pitch depleted Nats to sweep
- Nationals have to deal with latest Zimmerman injury
- Adam LaRoche notches three hits, Nats down Rockies
- Zimmermann returns to mound after injury