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On Harper, Kaline and Werth

May 7, 2013, 10:00 AM EDT

Associated Press
Bryce Harper leaves the field Sunday after being ejected.

Before we turn our attention to tonight's opener of an odd, two-game, interleague series with the Tigers, one final look back at the controversial moment from Sunday's game in Pittsburgh.

There's been plenty of debate about Bryce Harper's ejection following a check-swing call by John Hirschbeck in the top of the first inning, whether Harper actually did enough to warrant getting tossed and whether Hirschbeck provoked the whole thing with his response to Harper's initial reaction.

Well, check out this video clip of the play in question from the Pirates' TV broadcast (and posted on Twitter last night by followerRead more ยป

101 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. baseballswami - May 7, 2013 at 10:47 AM

    This weather does not look promising for tonight. Especially with all the sore hamstrings, feet and rib cages. Hopefully the last day or so helped some guys heal up a little.

  2. Doc - May 7, 2013 at 11:12 AM

    Hirschbeck needs to grab some Prozac, and take a course in anger management! People pay big bucks to get into a big league ballpark to see Harper, not some clown dressed in black.Kaline came into the league much like Harper. As young teenager, he played on a lot of what we now refer to as 'travel teams'. Be great to see a picture of them together!

  3. alexva - May 7, 2013 at 11:25 AM

    thanks for the added video Mark. also, glad Harper chose not to engage in a war of words afterward.

  4. NCNatsie - May 7, 2013 at 11:34 AM

    Power corrupts, and Hirschbeck used his power corruptly — that is, to satisfy some personal purpose rather than to see that the laws (rules of the game) are fairly enforced.

  5. Kiterp - May 7, 2013 at 12:03 PM

    that's a clown ejection, bro

  6. Gonat - May 7, 2013 at 12:08 PM

    Did Hirshbeck see Bryce Begins? Maybe he should. Here's my issue. Was Hirshbeck waiting for his 1 opportunity in the series to "get" Bryce? I think Bryce held up his swing. Bryce definitely thought he held up his swing. It's as if Hirshbeck set a trap and was waiting for it.

  7. sjm308 - May 7, 2013 at 12:11 PM

    Swami is right – this is not the kind of weather you want to play your first game back from a hamstring strain. I just hope we get these both in. This is where those 2 game series are going to really mess with the schedule. Its not like the Mets vs. Braves where they have multiple times to get another game in. From a selfish standpoint, while I want tomorrow to be bright and sunny, I see what is being forcast and I just hope they are wrong. Go Nats!!!

  8. sjm308 - May 7, 2013 at 12:17 PM

    Will MLB announce if they have fined Mr. Hirshbeck? I am sure it has been reviewed and I understand they have a supervisor. As the chief of that crew he really has all the power. I can't imagine having two worse umpires on the same crew. You are either going to have a balk or an ejection chance in any game they work. I guess it makes sense to keep a crew together the entire season but the next time we draw them will certainly have more then just a little attention.

  9. NatsJack in Florida - May 7, 2013 at 12:29 PM

    Davey has alreasy said Werth is out today, no matter what.I just don't want weather to mess with a Jordan Zimmermann start.

  10. Dave - May 7, 2013 at 12:36 PM

    I'm going tonight, worried about the rain. I hope they can start it on time and I hope they get a window of rain-free to play the game in.

  11. Joe Seamhead - May 7, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    I liked Bozwell's take in this morning's Wash Post, "Bryce Harper plays the game the right way. John Hirschbeck umpires the game the wrong way."It really seemed that the ump had made up his mind that he was going to throw Harper out, maybe even before he got to the park.I also agree with Boz that it would be best if Bryce was on his best behavior for at least the next month.This is the third time in the last couple of years that the umpire has had questionable calls in ejecting Nats players. Harper didn't deserve it last year on the play at first, in my opinion. The other very bad one was when Joe West threw Ryan Zimmerman out for tossing his helmet after West had called him out on a very bad 3rd strike call.

  12. Theophilus T. S. - May 7, 2013 at 12:41 PM

    When the umpires went on strike (OK, de-certified and 60 of them resigned), MLB accepted 13 of the resignations; as part of the settlement they rescinded ten of the acceptances. That was the last time baseball made a meaningful effort to improve the quality of the umpiring staff.

  13. SCNatsFan - May 7, 2013 at 12:49 PM

    irshbeck got what he wanted, media exposure. Like all trolls let the argument die off and hopefully his ego will too.

  14. Joe Seamhead - May 7, 2013 at 12:58 PM

    SCNatsFan, I actually hope that MLB makes a statement by suspending him. Joe West has calmed significantly over the past year. I wonder if something wasn't said to him? I take my young Bryce-crazy grandsons to a game, and like has been stated many times, I take them to see the players, not the umps. Some of these guys are better suited to be referees in pro wrestling than ML Baseball umpires.

  15. UNTERP - May 7, 2013 at 1:00 PM

    To be fair, I was at the Pittsburgh game and although Mr. Hirshbeck could have walked away, Bryce not only threw up his bat and other arm, he stared at Mr. Hirshbeck for several counts afterwards, then snap (not threw) his bat and helmet to to ground. Bryce clearly showed him up and Mr. Hirshbeck took umbrage to it…

  16. Muddy - May 7, 2013 at 1:00 PM

    Hirshbeck was clearly out of line; umpiring, as was said, the wrong way. He should've made his call and turned AWAY from the player instead of aggressively walking toward him, jawing the whole way, then there's no ejection. Anyway, many thanks to Mark for the blog and the video.

  17. ehay2k - May 7, 2013 at 1:06 PM

    Why wasn't Wandy tossed when he questioned the balk, and drew a line in the dirt with his foot?Double standard.

  18. Candide - May 7, 2013 at 1:13 PM

    Joe Seamhead said… It really seemed that the ump had made up his mind that he was going to throw Harper out, maybe even before he got to the park.I've read that in many places, and the video seems to confirm it. The moment Harper reacted to the call, Hirschbeck started yelling at him and walking towards him. If he had simply turned around and walked away, Harper would have, at best, had to simply go back to the dugout, and, at worst, stood there at the plate looking like a clown. Either way, end of scene. Hirschbeck was clearly looking for an excuse to toss Harper.But WHY??? What did Harper ever do to him? I don't recall him ever badmouthing umpires in general or Hirschbeck in particular.

  19. Joe Seamhead - May 7, 2013 at 1:23 PM

    An umpire can have an awful lot of power deciding a game's result by tossing a player. In this case, it worked out OK for the Nats in spite of the fact that it left Johnson short 2 outfielders with Werth already out. A tip of the hat to the bench for coming through.Meanwhile down on the farm, Maya had one of his better games last night with the Chiefs: 7.2 shutout innings, 9K's. beating a pretty good Durham team 5-0.

  20. LoveDaNats - May 7, 2013 at 1:27 PM

    I think Hirschbeck tossed him for the same reason Hamels hit him with a pitch. Kind of a "I've heard the hype about you and I'm not impressed. How do you like that, punk".Just watched Bryce Begins last night. The most poignant part to me was when his dad choked up saying Nats fans cheered his son, that he'd been booed most other times. Bryce will have to learn some people will try to go after him just for who he is.

  21. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 7, 2013 at 1:47 PM

    Joe Seamhead said… Meanwhile down on the farm, Maya had one of his better games last night with the Chiefs: 7.2 shutout innings, 9K's. beating a pretty good Durham team 5-0.How do you like that, but can it last. Rizzo certainly needs 1 pitcher to step up from the group with all the AAAA talent there. At some point this year you have to think that the Nats will need a 6th pitcher.

  22. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 7, 2013 at 1:52 PM

    From Byron Kerr: Potomac Nationals right-hander A.J. Cole has been named Carolina League Pitcher of the Week for the week of April 29-May 5, 2013.Cole notched his first win of the season this week, going six innings with a season-high nine strikeouts. He allowed only four singles, no earned runs and walked none. The 21-year old returned to the Nationals from the Oakland A's in the tree-way trade with Seattle that sent outfielder Michael Morse to the Mariners.Cole is now 1-1 with a 3.94 ERA in six starts with 34 strikeouts and six walks.That is big, real big. It's only High A ball but it's a start for a pitcher that had to work on his mechanics.

  23. Candide - May 7, 2013 at 1:53 PM

    LoveDaNats said… I think Hirschbeck tossed him for the same reason Hamels hit him with a pitch. Kind of a "I've heard the hype about you and I'm not impressed. How do you like that, punk".Except that:1) Hamels was on the opposing team. Though it was wrong to hit Harper, there was a purpose behind it – intimidation – to help his team win. Hirschbeck is an ump, and is supposed to be an impartial judge.2) Without looking it up, I'm sure this isn't the first Nats game Hirschbeck has umped where Harper was a starter. So, the "I've heard the hype" explanation doesn't seem to hold water. He must have heard it before, but didn't blow up then. Why now?3) And in any case, the hype doesn't come from Harper. He hasn't been Muhammad Ali, calling himself "the greatest," or anything like that. If anything, he's kept his head down, knowing the target is on his back, because of the hype surrounding him. You can't seriously claim he's been arrogant or boastful, a guy whose attitude needs to be brought down a peg.So I don't understand what Hirschbeck's beef is.

  24. Dominats Vobiscum - May 7, 2013 at 1:53 PM

    LoveDaNats said… I think Hirschbeck tossed him for the same reason Hamels hit him with a pitch. Kind of a "I've heard the hype about you and I'm not impressed. How do you like that, punk".Interesting theory. The Hamels HBP occurred on May 6th last year. The Hirschbeck ejection occurred on May 5th. A Cinco de Mayo thing?

  25. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 1:55 PM

    "that he'd been booed most other times. "Really? In LA? In the minors?"Bryce clearly showed him up"If Hirshbeck really felt "showed up" by a 20 year old questioning his call, I feel sorry for the guy. I mean, seriously? He thinks Bryce's goal was to make him look stupid or embarrass him?Give me a break. Is Hirshbeck stuck in a high school hallway between classes?

  26. Rabbit34 - May 7, 2013 at 2:01 PM

    Hey UNTERP…..I think Hirshbeck should take umbrage to my boot…….!! The one with the pointed toe! Haha.

  27. D'Gourds - May 7, 2013 at 2:03 PM

    Can't wait to give it to Balkin' Bob and Heavum Hirchbeck when they come to Nats Park next. What friggin losers! Huge inferiority complexes there. I sit right behind the visiting dugout and they can hear me very well. In fact I once gave it to Balkin' Bob so much, he stopped the game and walked in my direction to see who was yelling at him. He's the only ump in history to ever throw a fan out of a game. So I shut up when he approached! http://www.nhregister.com/articles/2010/09/08/sports/doc4c87a11193bc8803068175.txt The best umps are never noticed. I wish mlb would do something about these rogue umps. They just suck and lessen the game.

  28. UNTERP - May 7, 2013 at 2:08 PM

    Eric said… Let me clarify, in Mr. Hirshbeck mind, Bryce clearly showed him up. I think Bryce clearly showed him up too. Doesn't excuse Mr. Hirshbeck for overreacting. But to make a slight analogy, drivers have been pulled over for going 1 mile over the speed limit. This is a none issue to me, but it was unnecessary for Bryce to throw up his arm and bat in the first place. He didn't get the call. You don't protest an ump like him from a distance with the body language Bryce displayed. Respect his call and go back to the dugout…

  29. Jomolungma - May 7, 2013 at 2:09 PM

    It's actually pretty clear from that video that before the camera cuts to Hirshbeck, Bryce throws his arms up in the air. Bryce shouldn't have done that and Hirshbeck is right, he could've tossed him just for that. However, where Hirshbeck and other umps constantly get into trouble is that the embellish the facts – even though it's all on tape – to make a stronger case for themselves. Bryce clearly did not slam his bat or his helmet on the ground. What happened was that Bryce threw his arms up, Hirshbeck missed the chance to throw him out – he should've done it immediately instead of going back and forth with Harper – and then when he changed his mind and tossed Bryce he needed a new reason to do so, hence the fib. I'd have more respect for umps if they showed some backbone and some consistency.

  30. A DC Wonk - May 7, 2013 at 2:14 PM

    Totally off topic — I took Wonkling, my 18-year old daughter, to see "42" last night. She enjoyed it.But on the way home, she turned to me and said: "I wish there had been more on-the-field baseball action in the movie. I could have spent the whole time watching a game of his."Her comment almost brought a tear to dear old dad!!

  31. UNTERP - May 7, 2013 at 2:15 PM

    Jomolungma said… that's what I said, Bryce snapped his bat an helmet to the ground (not threw it). Hirshbeck was at fault for embellishing what Bryce did with the bat and helmet. I agree 100% here…

  32. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 2:21 PM

    "You don't protest an ump like him…"Aw, did poor Hirshbeck have his feelings assaulted by a 20 year old?To be very clear, I know exactly where you're coming from. My scorn is entirely directed at Hirshbeck, not you. If there were any kind of consistency whatsoever to when umps take action, we wouldn't be having this conversation. But, there's not. Some players SCREAM at the umps and nothing happens. Harper raises his arms, drops them, stares for a couple seconds…and walks away. IMO, what really set Hirshbeck off was that Harper turned his back on him while Hirshbeck was ranting at him.

  33. NatsJack in Florida - May 7, 2013 at 2:21 PM

    Keep those stories comin', Wonk. I love 'em.

  34. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 7, 2013 at 2:22 PM

    I heard some scouting on Zach Walters that is discouraging. He's trying to be a power hitting shortstop in an all or nothing approach. I checked his stats and he's hit a bunch of home runs but striking out in bunches and not taking walks in a 9.67 K/BB ratio which is awful for a kid in AAA. On top of that he has made several fielding errors on groundballs. Walters is a switch-hitter. When you check his stats, he has a .379 OBP batting right-handed and a .212 OBP batting left-handed. All of his HRs have been hit left-handed.Sound familiar?

  35. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 2:23 PM

    Also, to be clear, yes, ideally Harper would've sucked it up and walked off. I still think it's utterly absurd that he was ejected.

  36. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 2:25 PM

    Now, in bizarro land, I'm thinking Harper needed a rest, but didn't want to ask for it, and Davey didn't want to bench him. So, they made a gentleman's agreement that Harper would provoke a known hothead ump and hope for the best ;).

  37. Sec. 3, My Comfortability Sofa - May 7, 2013 at 2:25 PM

    "Totally off topic"++

  38. UNTERP - May 7, 2013 at 2:27 PM

    Eric said… IMO, what really set Hirshbeck off was that Harper turned his back on him while Hirshbeck was ranting at him. yeah, LOL… For this reason, I like what Harper did there. You are on point, that's why he threw him out. It's all good…

  39. Theophilus T. S. - May 7, 2013 at 2:33 PM

    Hirschbeck was on the "DL" at least a part of last season, so it's possible this was his first opportunity to show Harper who's boss. No matter. In my opinion he's a recidivist jerk.

  40. Don - May 7, 2013 at 2:37 PM

    Jeez, can we move-on laready? Harper deserved to get tossed; he (a guy with not one full season in the bigs) showed up the ump and was arguing balls/strikes. And it's long over.

  41. A DC Wonk - May 7, 2013 at 2:38 PM

    NJ, Sofa — thanks!I just thought of something else she told me last night that blew me away.She also said, after the movie: "do you know what happened one year ago today?"I had no idea what she was driving at.She said, "that's when Harper got hit and then stole home!Blow me away with a feather!(She knew that, fwiw, because we were at that game)

  42. Candide - May 7, 2013 at 2:51 PM

    UNTERP said… IMO, what really set Hirshbeck off was that Harper turned his back on him while Hirshbeck was ranting at him. So Hirschbeck hadn't been "set off" yet when he was started towards Harper, yelling and waving his arms?Hirschbeck was cool, calm, and collected right up until the moment Harper turned his back on him?Really?

  43. Theophilus T. S. - May 7, 2013 at 2:57 PM

    "Jeez can we move on?"Yeah I suppose we can. But I'm not going to let go of the idea that there are a bunch of hacks out there spoiling the game (occasionally) for players and fans. There were three changes in the MLB umpiring roster this offseason: three crew chiefs retired and were replaced. No under-performers were dismissed. That means, among 65 umpires, (1) none were superannuated/out of shape and unable to fulfill the physical requirements of their position; (2) no one's skills had atrophied to the point of being substandard/unacceptable; (3) none of them was incompetent. It also means there were (except for the three replacements) no potential hires who would have, overall, improved the quality of the staff. Does anybody seriously believe that? That means that boneheads like Hirschbeck, Davidson, West, Hallion, Diaz — to name only the most obvious — are out there every day screwing things up for everyone else. Boo the umps. Play "Three Blind Mice" everytime they come out to get the lineup card.

  44. Faraz Shaikh - May 7, 2013 at 2:57 PM

    I had not seen the video so I thought maybe Harper was a bit excited and got ejected. saw the video last night and umpire was at fault all the way.anyways, I also noticed that harper's numbers against lefties are not impressive.I was also excited about tonight's game, expecting a pitching duel and what not but then checked the forecast.

  45. NCNatsie - May 7, 2013 at 2:57 PM

    Well, Don, I would have moved on, but now you've provoked me, because I think you're dead wrong in saying Harper deserved to get tossed because he's only "a guy with not one full season in the bigs" and "showed up the ump."First of all, he's got more than a full season in the bigs now, and second — and most important — the rules should be appliled fairly to all players — anything else is unacceptable.

  46. UNTERP - May 7, 2013 at 2:58 PM

    yeah, I was agreeing with Eric. Hirshbeck was an ass, no question. Like Eric said above, and I agree with him, when Bryce turned his back to him (which is nothing wrong with that and a classy move by Bryce), that's why he tossed him. It wasn't throwing the bat and helmet because he didn't throw it, it was turning away from Hirshbeck. I agree with you Candide, Hirshbeck was already in a rant, but Bryce turning his back was the final straw. That's not a reason to toss him at that point. Major League Baseball needs to find away to curtail this kind of behavior by umpires. How's that…

  47. Faraz Shaikh - May 7, 2013 at 3:01 PM

    Don, players have done much worse and not get ejected. I don't think Harper deserved that ejection.

  48. A DC Wonk - May 7, 2013 at 3:04 PM

    Faraz Shaikh said… Don, players have done much worse and not get ejected. I don't think Harper deserved that ejection.That's true — but — players have done similarly and did get ejected.The point is, in part, inconsistency — which equals unfairness.

  49. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 3:13 PM

    "So Hirschbeck hadn't been "set off" yet when he was started towards Harper, yelling and waving his arms?Hirschbeck was cool, calm, and collected right up until the moment Harper turned his back on him?Really?"Replying since UNTERP was quoting me there. And, UNTERP covered my thinking well. But, in retrospect, since we're splitting hairs here, I suppose "what sent Hirshbeck over the edge and caused him to eject Harper" would've been more accurate than "set off".

  50. JD - May 7, 2013 at 3:13 PM

    Here is the point: A good umpire always strives to turn down the temperature when a conflict arises. A player should have a right to be genuinely frustrated and unless he swears or gets in the umpire's grill he should be left alone to cool down. All too often you see umpires escalate the situation and pour gasoline on the fire and to me their only motivation is ego. I think that any umpire judged to have escalated an incident should be suspended without pay. no one pays to see umpires and if you know an umpires name it probably means he's doing a bad job.

  51. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 3:14 PM

    Do umps ever engage in what might be reasonably considered "retribution"? Do they hold grudges? Are we sure Hirshbeck won't come back to haunt Harper/the Nats in future games? Particularly if the league takes action for his ejecting Harper.

  52. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 3:17 PM

    Anyway, of far more import is this n00bish question: what happens to the rotation if we're rained out today and/or tomorrow? What happens to it if both games are rained out and we make up both with a doubleheader on Thursday?

  53. NatsJack in Florida - May 7, 2013 at 3:20 PM

    Thank you Eric.Like I said earlier in this thread, I don't want weather to mess with a Jordan Zimmermann start.

  54. Candide - May 7, 2013 at 3:24 PM

    UNTERP said…I agree with you Candide, Hirshbeck was already in a rant, but Bryce turning his back was the final straw.UNTERP – and Eric (got my quotes messed up earlier, sorry), I'm still baffled as to what caused Hirschbeck to go off on a rant in the first place. I can't read lips; Did Harper yell something truly shocking at him? That's the only explanation that makes sense to me, but if he had, why would Hirschbeck later on say nothing about it, instead giving that line of baloney about Harper slamming his helmet and bat?Something doesn't add up here. And that tells me there's something significant we don't know.

  55. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 3:26 PM

    So, if today is rained out and we play tomorrow, Haren still takes the mound?Yeah, that would be a bummer to miss a Zimm start.

  56. EmDash - May 7, 2013 at 3:27 PM

    I'd guess (and it's just a guess) that the rotation stays the same for the Nationals and just gets pushed back a bit if the weather proves to be a problem? Wouldn't want to skip Zimm, and Haren is the type of pitcher who really needs to stay on as set a schedule as possible (a "feel" pitcher, I think they call it?) to stay sharp. The too-long rest before his first start was identified as one of the possible causes of his total meltdown, if I remember correctly.

  57. Doc - May 7, 2013 at 3:27 PM

    Anyhoo, I think that we should take a survey of ML umps, including Hirschbeck, and see if any of them know what the word 'umbrage' means. LOLMaybe Country Joe West could use it in one of his hlll-billy songs???

  58. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 3:28 PM

    Candide, either Harper said something terrible or Hirshbeck was simply primed for a fight.

  59. JD - May 7, 2013 at 3:30 PM

    Eric, They won't skip Zim's start. I think what Nats Jack is worried about is if the game does go tonight but has several rain interruptions forcing Davie to waste a JZimm start. In fairness Detroit has Anibal Sanchez going tonight and he has been lights out this year as well.

  60. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 3:31 PM

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  61. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 3:32 PM

    Gotcha, JD, thanks.

  62. JD - May 7, 2013 at 3:32 PM

    I checked and Detroit and the Nats have an off day on Thursday and the weather looks a bit better for tomorrow so in the end they should get both games in.

  63. Candide - May 7, 2013 at 3:32 PM

    Eric said… Candide, either Harper said something terrible or Hirshbeck was simply primed for a fight.Agree. But if Harper said something really terrible, why didn't Hirschbeck immediately eject him? Harper said something ugly enough to get Hirschbeck yelling and waving his arms, but not ugly enough to get immediately tossed? Doesn't make sense.So Hirschbeck was primed for a fight. For no reason? Again, doesn't make sense.There's something significant we don't know about.

  64. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 3:33 PM

    "The too-long rest before his first start was identified as one of the possible causes of his total meltdown, if I remember correctly."That would actually argue *for* skipping Zimm if today is postponed and tomorrow gets played. Of course, in that case they might play a doubleheader tomorrow, in that case they'd probably pitch Zimm in the first game and Haren in the second.Things will get really interesting if today AND tomorrow are rained out and they play a doubleheader on Thursday.In any case, if we play both games by Thursday night, I think maintaining the rotation would be the best option…just curious if there's a SOP for this sort of thing.

  65. JD - May 7, 2013 at 3:34 PM

    Eric'Candide, either Harper said something terrible or Hirshbeck was simply primed for a fight' It's not a fair fight. Harper can't throw Hirshbeck out.

  66. Faraz Shaikh - May 7, 2013 at 3:34 PM

    I would have loved to see JV against us. Not because anibal has done well in past, but JV that much more awesome and I like to see a good pitched game from one of the best pitchers in the league.

  67. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 3:35 PM

    "There's something significant we don't know about."Hrm…I think you overestimate people if you think some folks can't just be that egomaniacal ;)But, who knows. Maybe Davey, Harper, and Hirshbeck hatched a plan to get an injured Harper on the bench with a little fanfare ;).

  68. Candide - May 7, 2013 at 3:41 PM

    Faraz Shaikh said… I would have loved to see JV against us. Not because anibal has done well in past, but JV that much more awesome and I like to see a good pitched game from one of the best pitchers in the league.If you're really that excited about seeing Verlander, you can always go up to Baltimore May 31 – June 2…

  69. UNTERP - May 7, 2013 at 3:42 PM

    Eric said… But, who knows. Maybe Davey, Harper, and Hirshbeck hatched a plan to get an injured Harper on the bench with a little fanfare ;). Eric, I was disappointed that Bryce was tossed, but the first thought in my mind was good, he wasn't doing much anyway, he needed to sit a couple of games to heal, though I know his presence in the line-up matters…

  70. Faraz Shaikh - May 7, 2013 at 3:44 PM

    Candide, I plan to if JV is pitching.

  71. Faraz Shaikh - May 7, 2013 at 3:46 PM

    Complimentary Bo Jackson play

  72. Dominats Vobiscum - May 7, 2013 at 3:49 PM

    "Eric said… "The too-long rest before his first start was identified as one of the possible causes of his total meltdown, if I remember correctly." That would actually argue *for* skipping Zimm if today is postponed and tomorrow gets played."I don't follow the logic of skipping Jordan's start if today's game is played tomorrow so that he won't be starting on too long a rest. Wouldn't skipping his start mean he'd be on even longer rest for his next start?

  73. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 3:52 PM

    "I don't follow the logic of skipping Jordan's start if today's game is played tomorrow so that he won't be starting on too long a rest. Wouldn't skipping his start mean he'd be on even longer rest for his next start?"Oh, sorry, I thought EmDash were arguing that *Haren* shouldn't get too long of a rest. Skipping Zim would keep Haren's rest shorter.Anyway, hopefully we'll get both Tigers' games in before Friday one way or another and the point will be moot

  74. Dominats Vobiscum - May 7, 2013 at 3:55 PM

    "In any case, if we play both games by Thursday night, I think maintaining the rotation would be the best option…just curious if there's a SOP for this sort of thing."If they end up playing a doubleheader on Thursday that would screw up the rotation going forward because one of the Thursday pitchers would have his next turn come up in four days rather than five. If they play on Wed and Thurs or play a doubleheader on Wed and take the Thurs off day, then there's no impact on the rotation going forward.

  75. NatsLady - May 7, 2013 at 3:55 PM

    In the past Davey hasn't tinkered with the order of the rotation (except maybe after the All-Star break). Can't imagine him doing so now, JZ is our best pitcher at this point– why would you "save" him for the Cubs when Det & co. should be able to do the job? Also, don't know about Haren, but of the others, I would trust JZ the most in chancy weather. Further, being ultra ultra competitive, I bet he's geared himself up for this start mentally, facing the best hitters. Give him the ball.

  76. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 4:01 PM

    Good point Dominats. I think JZimm could handle it, though (he'd be the one getting only 4 days).NatsLady, thanks, the insight into what Davey's done in the past is what I was after. FWIW, I was only talking about skipping anyone in the context of postponement(s).

  77. EmDash - May 7, 2013 at 4:01 PM

    I did mean Haren was better on shorter rest, you're right. :) Unfortunately Zimm is too – he's said he feels better pitching when his arm is more "tired," which is strange to me, but pitchers are weird. The only pitcher who does as well or better on longer rest is Detwiler, if I recall.

  78. JD - May 7, 2013 at 4:02 PM

    NatsLady, The thing I am most worried about in these situations is say we have a 1 hour rain delay after the 2nd inning or something or even a postponement without having an official game. Then you have wasted a starter and you may have to come back on Thursday with Duke and/or Stammen.

  79. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 4:05 PM

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  80. NatsJack in Florida - May 7, 2013 at 4:05 PM

    Yep, JD….that's it. I don't want Jordan to get started than get caught in a delay that ruins his turn.

  81. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 4:06 PM

    "Unfortunately Zimm is too – he's said he feels better pitching when his arm is more "tired," which is strange to me, but pitchers are weird. The only pitcher who does as well or better on longer rest is Detwiler, if I recall."It does seem counterintuitive, but I get it. I think the most clarify example of how feeling "too strong" can be detrimental has to do with breaking balls. When pitchers feel "too strong", they might throw a breaking ball too hard, and the ball gets to the plate before it breaks, which can result in hanging curves, meatballs, etc.With fastballs, I think the tendency to throw too hard can mess up release points and mechanics.

  82. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 7, 2013 at 4:13 PM

    JZim only had 5 games last year where he gave up 4 or more runs. Of those 5 games, 4 of them were with 1 or 2 extra days rest.He did have 8 other games with extra rest and pitched well.

  83. Section 222 - May 7, 2013 at 4:14 PM

    I'd be shocked if a rainout did anything other than move everyone back a day. An extra day of rest isn't going to hurt anyone. And the way they all are pitching these days, no reason to skip anyone. The Tigers skipped Porcello when they had an off day, which is why we're not getting Verlander in this series. But Haren is improving so I'm sure Davey wants him to go — tomorrow or Thursday.On Harper, it would have shown a very short fuse and we probably would have been pretty upset if he did it, but Hirschbeck could have thrown him out for his initial reaction of throwing up his arms. But once he didn't, his subsequent actions were completely unacceptable. Players "show up" umps in far, far worse ways that what Harp did after the intitial reaction. I hope MLB takes some action.I'm almost certainly MLB won't take any action.

  84. Dominats Vobiscum - May 7, 2013 at 4:15 PM

    With the way it's raining now and the forecast for tonight, I'd say it's a given that today's game will be called before game time. Rizzo will probably seek the Tigers' preference for playing two tomorrow or one tomorrow and one Thursday. The rain is supposed to let up by sometime tomorrow, so they'll still have the option of playing one or even two on Thursday if necessary. Given all that, I don't see why they'd start a game tonight or even tomorrow afternoon if the conditions are iffy.

  85. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 4:16 PM

    And, of course, he's already getting an extra day's rest as it is.Do they ever use pitchers with fewer than 5 days' rest (e.g., will they use him in his regular spot next week if we end up playing a double header on Thursday)?

  86. Section 222 - May 7, 2013 at 4:19 PM

    Remember, they pitch every fifth day, which means four days of rest, not five. I can't think of a single time when Davey sent someone out on less than four days rest last year. Only deep in the playoffs would that be necessary.

  87. Eric - May 7, 2013 at 4:22 PM

    "Remember, they pitch every fifth day, which means four days of rest, not five."Right, I realized that right after posting. D'oh!I hate when comment sections lack edit buttons ;).Anyhoo, if JZimm pitches in a double header Thursday, his next start would be after only 3-days rest. Would be interesting to see how that would be handled. Is that the sort of thing that would lead to making up the game at a later date?

  88. Dave - May 7, 2013 at 4:31 PM

    Does anybody know what happens with a season-ticket game on a RCR card if it's rained out? Obviously there's no paper rain-check. What will they do?

  89. Theophilus T. S. - May 7, 2013 at 4:41 PM

    Do the Tiggers come to B'more later this year — some occasion when they could squeeze in a game on an off day? The weather forecast for tomorrow is worse than today's. Would hate to see anybody stranded through a day-night DH like that farce against the Mets (Dodgers?) a couple of years ago, when one game got scrapped anyway.

  90. NatsLady - May 7, 2013 at 4:49 PM

    Yes, they do, I looked into it yesterday. They come to Ballmer in June and they have a common off day with the Nats.

  91. Section 222 - May 7, 2013 at 4:50 PM

    The Tigers play in Baltimore the last weekend of this month, followed by an off day on Monday,June 3, and play in TB on Tuesday night, June 4. The Nats are in Atlanta for a day game on Sunday June 2, with an off day on Monday before starting a home series on Tuesday against the Mets. So yes, a rescheduled game could take place. Today's forecast is bad through the rest of the day, but tomorrow's isn't that bad. I think they are more likely to get this series in over the next three days than not.

  92. Section 222 - May 7, 2013 at 4:50 PM

    Ooops, there's a drink for NL.

  93. Section 222 - May 7, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    Pretty soon I'm going to lead the lead in drinks owed. Eric, if there's a DH tomorrow, then the off day on Thursday allows everyone to get the proper rest when the rotation turns over. But if they play 2 on Thursday, I doubt very seriously they'd ask Znn to pitch on 3 days rest. Paging Zach Duke. Or, under the new roster rules, they could call up Chris Young to pitch the second game, allowing Haren to start on Friday and pushing JZnn's next start back to Tuesday.

  94. Section 222 - May 7, 2013 at 5:01 PM

    Dave, on your RCR question, this is just a guess, but I think they will load the makeup game onto your cards. If you wanted to use your rainchecks for another game, you can just exchange that makeup game under the future game exchange policy. There are some complications though so it will be interesting to see how they handle it.

  95. Sec. 3, My Comfortability Sofa - May 7, 2013 at 5:04 PM

    Newer Post

  96. Harpo - May 7, 2013 at 5:06 PM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  97. Section 222 - May 7, 2013 at 5:11 PM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  98. Ivan Tuski - May 7, 2013 at 6:03 PM

    John Hirschbeck and the league's growing umpire problemhttp://www.overthemonster.com/2013/5/6/4304614/john-hirschbeck-bryce-harper-ejected-ejection-mlb-umpiresThat last paragraph should wake up somebody

  99. Steady Eddie - May 7, 2013 at 7:12 PM

    Dave — they treat the game on the SPH card just like a ticket — it's good for your regular seats to the game on the day it's postponed to, but if you don't want to or can't get to that game, you have the option of doing an exchange for a different game.

  100. Dave - May 7, 2013 at 7:41 PM

    Thanks, Steady. I'll need to pay really close attention to when the rainout game is played. Based on my recent (frustrating) experience with a game-swap,one would have to submit the exchange request before the made-up game; else the ticket would turn into RCR points, which, of course, wouldn't be worth nearly as much as the original ticket.

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
x-WASHINGTON 91 64 --
ATLANTA 76 79 15.0
NEW YORK 76 80 15.5
MIAMI 74 81 17.0
PHILADELPHIA 71 85 20.5
x-Clinched NL East title
Through Sunday's games

NL PLAYOFFS STANDINGS

W L GB WCGB
x-WASHINGTON (4) 91 64 --
y-LOS ANGELES 89 67 2.5
y-ST. LOUIS 87 69 4.5
-------------------------
SAN FRANCISCO 84 71 7.0 --
PITTSBURGH 84 71 7.0 --
MILWAUKEE 80 76 11.5 4.5
x-Clinched division title
y-Clinched playoff berth
Through Sunday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
MON: OFF
TUE: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
THU: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
FRI: Marlins at Nats (DH), 1:05 p.m., 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Marlins at Nats, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Marlins at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
Full season schedule

Mark joins Rob Carlin and Joe Orsulak every Thursday at 4 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet for a half-hour show on the Nats, Orioles and rest of MLB. Re-airs Thursdays at 11:30 p.m., Saturdays at 9 a.m. and Sundays at 11:30 a.m.

ON THE RADIO

As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...

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TUE: 2:30 p.m.
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THU: 2:30 p.m.
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