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Game 35: Cubs at Nats

May 10, 2013, 7:39 PM EDT

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Cubs open a three-game series tonight at Nationals Park.

As Dan Haren put it yesterday: "We've come a long way in a week." Sure enough, a Nationals club that was approaching panic-mode not all that long ago enters this weekend's series against the Cubs having won six of seven to improve to 19-15 overall. They're hitting better, they're pitching better, they're playing better defense and they're obviously feeling much better about themselves because of it.

And after a tough stretch that saw them face five consecutive teams with winning records, the Nats now get a three-game set against the Cubs, who are — how shall we put this? — downright awful. Jeff Samardzija, tonight's starter, is solid. And Anthony Rizzo looks like a big piece of their future. But the rest of that roster leaves plenty to be desired.

Ross Detwiler will try to take advantage of that fact in tonight's series opener. No lineup yet from Davey Johnson, but Jayson Werth is expected to be out one last time with his tight hamstring. [UPDATE AT 4:45 P.M. — Not only is Werth out of the lineup again, but Davey says he's likely headed to the DL, still suffering spasms in his hamstring. And on top of all that, Bryce Harper is also out of the lineup tonight after having a procedure to have an ingrown toenail removed. So the Nats are down two men tonight.]

Updates to come…

CHICAGO CUBS at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: WNEW (99.1 FM), XM 183
Weather: Partly cloudy, 79 degrees, Wind 8 mph out to LF

NATIONALS (19-15)
CF Denard Span
RF Roger Bernadina
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche

Read more »

232 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. NCNatsie - May 10, 2013 at 7:46 PM

    I want to chime in on the argument about statistics that’s been going on here for the past couple of days.Statistics can analyze past performance, but the sense in which they are predictive of future performance is complicated by the existence of what is called variance from the mean. In regard to human endeavor, this introduces factors which are not susceptible to statistical analysis. A seven year veteran pitcher may have a lifetime ERA of 2.50, and be even better than that in September. But if, THIS SEPTEMBER, his wife is threatening to leave him or his kid was diagnosed with something serious, or maybe he just started reading Nietzsche and is completely bummed out about the meaning of existence, that little something in his makeup that gives him the mental strength to do his job better than the guys in the other team’s lineup may be compromised.And, of course, things don’t have to be anywhere near that serious to change the picture. That is why players have good years and bad years.We often talk about how good hitters are when they are "seeing the ball well,” but who can quantify that, or predict it? Similarly, how do you quantify the observation that “the game has slowed down for him?” How much slower is it? Adam LaRouche has a history of lousy Aprils. So how come he was spectacular in April of 2012? Was he seeing the ball 54.7% better? Or had the game slowed down 24.3 miles per hour from what it had been in April of 2010?The vagaries of life are inscrutable. Statistics can help you understand the odds of something. So can the intuition of a knowledgeable baseball person. But you’re always dealing in probabilities, not certainties, until, as with Schrodinger’s cat, you lift up the box and see whether the damn thing is dead or alive. The quantum physics guys call that the “collapse of the wave function.” The baseball guys call it whether you won or lost the game.

  2. JaneB - May 10, 2013 at 7:46 PM

    I'm looking forward to seeing Ross pitch the daylights out of the Cubbies. I'm also looking forward to seeing the prettiest batting stance in baseball (Soriano) and seeing Anthony Rizzo in person. Of course, Ross will be LIGHTS OUT so neither will be at their best. I'm counting down te minutes before I get to leave for the stadium.GYFNG!

  3. JaneB - May 10, 2013 at 7:47 PM

    Great post, NCNatsie!

  4. baseballswami - May 10, 2013 at 7:53 PM

    Wow. All the smart people are around today. Tidbits–Hanrahan to Dr. Andrews– probably TJ , too bad for him. Also– Mr. Laser Show Pedroia threw a giant hissy fit about a strike call– complete with lots of bleeping. TV had to blur his mouth the language was so bad from the dugout. Not even a warning. I guess that did not dhow anyone up.

  5. bowdenball - May 10, 2013 at 7:54 PM

    To be fair to the Cubs, Starlin Castro is also pretty awesome and definitely part of the team's future, even if he had a terrible April.

  6. baseballswami - May 10, 2013 at 7:54 PM

    * that would be SHOW anyone up*

  7. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 7:56 PM

    Samardjiza (sp?) is pretty darn good. Soriano still has a decent bat, Rizzo is legit, Starlin Castro is good. Outside of that, the Cubs are awful.Hoping we can put together another solid effort today and pick up win #20. Would be especially nice if the Braves lose to the Giants and Matt Cain.

  8. baseballswami - May 10, 2013 at 7:57 PM

    Bowdenball– Starlin Castro seems like he has ADD. I certainly hope they have had him evaluated. Adam had to struggle for way too long until he got medical help. When I watch Castro, that's what I see.

  9. baseballswami - May 10, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    David– Matt Cain having a tough spring. Hope he pulls it together .

  10. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 10, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    NCNatsie, I heard Cal Ripken talking about veteran players who are struggling and he talked about Adam LaRoche in particular as to what he could change in his off-season regime. It was interesting but even coming from Cal as he said there are so many varying situations and you can only help in his case he "progresses to the mean".Projecting full year stats based on April results is a worthless endeavor.My biggest disappointment in the season as a whole has been the lack of good fundamentals and mental mistakes and also this lack of scoring runs late in games.

  11. bowdenball - May 10, 2013 at 8:02 PM

    NCNatsie, you would be hard-pressed to find a "statistics person" who disagrees with what you said. I've never read or talked to anyone who rejects the human element of the game or the fact that factors we can't measure sometimes affect slumps and hot streaks. The division between the two isn't like it's made out to be in the Moneyball movie.Sabermetrics people want more and better information to consider in addition to- not instead of- what is already available.

  12. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 10, 2013 at 8:04 PM

    NCNatsie said…We often talk about how good hitters are when they are "seeing the ball well,” but who can quantify that, or predict it? Similarly, how do you quantify the observation that “the game has slowed down for him?” How much slower is it? Adam LaRouche has a history of lousy Aprils. So how come he was spectacular in April of 2012? Was he seeing the ball 54.7% better? Or had the game slowed down 24.3 miles per hour from what it had been in April of 2010?I still think the whole Adam LaRoche bad April thing has been made worse than it was. He is a slow starter and that is a big difference. He was averaging before this season around a .225 BA. It's bad but not horrible.He still doesn't look like he has his power swing and that is still troublesome but the fact he is getting on base is a real encouraging start. I still think he could use a rest every once a while.

  13. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 8:05 PM

    Cubs players to watch vs. Det: Scott Hairston (1.778 OPS against), Starlin Castro (1.167 OPS), Wellington Castillo (same), Nate Schierholtz (1.000), Soriano (.714).Nats players with the best track record against Samardzija: LaRoche (1.250), Desmond (1.200), Span (1.000), Werth (.747), Bernadina and Ramos (.667). So I wouldn't be surprised to see Bernadina in the line-up again today with Werth out.I would be very surprised if the Nats moved up in the standings vs. the Braves today, as apparently Tim Hudson hasn't lost a game against the Giants since 2006.

  14. bowdenball - May 10, 2013 at 8:06 PM

    A great example of this human element and the week-to-week fluctuations in performance that statistics can't capture was Alex Rodriguez last fall. His overall 2012 offensive numbers were just fine, pretty good even, but I don't remember anyone from the sabermetric community objecting to it when they moved him out of the middle of that lineup and eventually to the bench in October. It was clear to anyone who watched his plate appearances closely that something was wrong.

  15. Harpo - May 10, 2013 at 8:07 PM

    To much time given to the same old discussions on LaRoche and Espinosa and Ryan Zimmerman. For all 3 the stats stink and that's a fact and if you factor in there value on defense well Espinosa is only slightly better than Lombardozzi and Ryan Zimmerman is a big fat negative with negative range. That's a big problem for a guy who still isn't hitting for power or average. LaRoche and Zimm are batting like banjo hitters and they are corner infielders!

  16. NatsJack in Florida - May 10, 2013 at 8:11 PM

    EmDash…..and when was the last time the Nats beat Anibal Sanchez before yesterday!

  17. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 8:15 PM

    Hee, very true NatsJack, it's definitely possible! I'm just going with the odds…

  18. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 8:16 PM

    Joey Votto is on MLB Network gushing about Bryce Harper.

  19. baseballswami - May 10, 2013 at 8:17 PM

    David– that was quite an analysis!! Sounded like a sports physiologist. Very articulate guy.

  20. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 8:18 PM

    No Harper in the lineup today…?

  21. NatsNut - May 10, 2013 at 8:19 PM

    I guess one of his nicknames is "Spellcheck"WaPo blog post on the CubsDavid Proctor said…Samardjiza (sp?) is pretty darn good

  22. baseballswami - May 10, 2013 at 8:22 PM

    Joey Votto is a hitting scientist. I have never heard him talk about it before– I am in awe of his hitting intelligence and seriousness. And he thinks Bryce can be a great hitter. Wow.

  23. baseballswami - May 10, 2013 at 8:23 PM

    Anyone know why Bryce is not in the lineup? Anyone know when this season we will be actually able to field our ideal lineup?? Ever???

  24. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 10, 2013 at 8:24 PM

    Beating Anibal gives you hope on how things have changed with this team recently.

  25. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 8:32 PM

    Nothing from the beat writers as yet as to why Harper's not in the lineup.

  26. baseballswami - May 10, 2013 at 8:32 PM

    We also beat that other ugly streak against the Braves. Let 's keep beating those kinds of nasty streaks!!!

  27. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 8:34 PM

    Dan Kolko ‏@masnKolko 4sWerth had a setback with hamstring. It went into spasms today when doing leg curls, Davey said. DL now looking likely. #NatsSigh…

  28. Section 222 - May 10, 2013 at 8:34 PM

    Chase has a new story up about an unknown (at least to me) Phillies reliever not liking the Untuck tradition. Hahaha. Better get used to it buddy, you're going to be seeing it up close and personal real soon.

  29. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 8:35 PM

    Well Werth's DL stint can be backdated 7 or 8 days so he'll only miss about another week. Kobernus and Eury Perez are the most likely callups.

  30. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 8:36 PM

    Bryce Harper also had an operation on his right foot to fix an ingrown toenail. Won't play today. Davey says he'll likely return tomorrow.

  31. Pilchard - May 10, 2013 at 8:38 PM

    If Werth goes on the DL, Eury Perez is the only OF on the 40 man roster in the minors. So, either Eury comes up or the Nats need to shuffle the roster (someone to the 60 man DL?) to bring up Kobernus (who has been playing OF lately) or Micah Owings or someone else not on the 40 man.

  32. peric - May 10, 2013 at 8:39 PM

    Probably would have been Corey Brown if he hadn't hit the DL yet again. Perez is the stronger defensively in the outfield and he is already on the 40-man. Expect Perez. His problem? He won't get many at bats if he continues to NOT WALK and when he does get on IGNORE the do not steal signal.

  33. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 8:39 PM

    Looks like the rain delay cost us a day of Harper. Plan was for Harper to have the operation and use Thursday's off day to rest.

  34. peric - May 10, 2013 at 8:40 PM

    Definitely could use Corey Brown who features power and speed. If Harper goes down … there is no left-handed bat to replace him.

  35. Section 222 - May 10, 2013 at 8:40 PM

    Possible that Rendon comes up to be the hairy chested righthanded bench bat? Lombardozzi can play the outfield in a pinch. This is a good opportunity for Ty-Mo to show that he can produce when playing virtually every day. So far this season, he hasn't done much at all.

  36. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 8:41 PM

    I think the Nats have two spots open on the 40-man, right? So they could add Kobernus if they wanted to bring him up. Though, does anyone know if that would cause issues with re-optioning him to the minors when Werth gets back? Don't know if he'd have to pass through waivers to go back since he was subject to the rule 5 draft, or not.

  37. peric - May 10, 2013 at 8:44 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  38. peric - May 10, 2013 at 8:46 PM

    Power lefties currently in the lineup EQUAL TO ONE (without Harper) like it not haters:Danny Espinosa.Adam LaRoche still features an ISO that is .118. to Espinosa's .172. Right now LaRoche is a singles hitter with less power than Larry Biitner. Unless the bat of the Shark can add some punch from the left-side.

  39. Pilchard - May 10, 2013 at 8:46 PM

    Corey Brown is on the DL in Cuse. He has not played a game in almost a month. BTW, is Brown related to Peric? Amazing how Peric constantly pimps a journeyman minor leaguer.

  40. peric - May 10, 2013 at 8:47 PM

    I think the Nats have two spots open on the 40-man, right? So they could add Kobernus if they wanted to bring him up. NO just one. They used one on that left-handed reliever they picked up from Houston on waivers.

  41. peric - May 10, 2013 at 8:47 PM

    Xavier Cedeno.

  42. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 8:47 PM

    I think part of the Shark's problem is he is trying to do that. He was known in the past to try too hard to hit HRs. He was much better last year when he was slapping singles all over the field.

  43. peric - May 10, 2013 at 8:49 PM

    Amazing how Peric constantly pimps a journeyman minor leaguer.Yeah amazing how Peric "pimped" Michael Morse the same way WHEN he was playing for Syracuse just acquired from the Mariners via their AAA franchise in the PCL. Amazing that Peric knew well in advance that Morse could be a true impact hitter in the major leagues. Gee that guy Peric must be pretty smart.

  44. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 8:51 PM

    Ah, you're right, I forgot about him. And Rizzo seems likely to want to leave a slot open, just in case, so Eury definitely has the inside track.

  45. Section 222 - May 10, 2013 at 8:51 PM

    from Twitter:‏@JamesWagnerWPDavey says Nats looking at two right-handed outfielders to call up, either Eury Perez or Jeff Kobernus, Rule 5 pick returned from Tigers.So Kobernus may get a shot. Hope he does better here than he did with the Tigers. A certain poster will claim vindication just as he did with Rendon, even though both callups were prompted by injury.

  46. peric - May 10, 2013 at 8:53 PM

    so Eury definitely has the inside track.NO doubt about it as Davey would say. Again, the problem is they guy came up and didn't listen. Plus he's just a singles hitter another guy you typically bat first when the need is for run producers. The Nats are sadly bereft of run producers …Of course THERE IS another option if the emphasis is on offense and Davey can live with the defense as it stands: Chris Marerro. He is also on the 40-man does feature some power (not even close to T-Mo but …) and really fits into that niche's that says PH/DH part-time first bagger.

  47. peric - May 10, 2013 at 8:56 PM

    A certain poster will claim vindication just as he did with Rendon, even though both callups were prompted by injury.Not in this case. I do think Kobernus learned A LOT from Leyland and company while there. He's translated it into numbers in Syracuse. Kobernus is not a good defensive player. He is not a power bat. He specs out as perfect for Lombo's role if Lombo is traded somewhere to be a starter … AND he needs to LEARN TO WALK!

  48. Just wonderin' - May 10, 2013 at 8:57 PM

    I've had the ingrown toenail procedure (it's a stretch to call it surgery or an operation) and I can't imagine that Bryce will be back tomorrow or even Sunday. But then again, he's young and strong.

  49. peric - May 10, 2013 at 8:58 PM

    But 222, Beasley really likes Kobernus and will likely push for him to come up if they ask him.

  50. peric - May 10, 2013 at 9:00 PM

    No one is completely sold on Perez. He still falls under the category of still young, might yet learn what he needs to …

  51. natsfan1a - May 10, 2013 at 9:03 PM

    Yay, I get to watch a whole Nats game after being away last week (well, at least I'll watch for as long as I can stay awake).

  52. Section 222 - May 10, 2013 at 9:05 PM

    Time for Zim to pick up the slack for Harper's toenail.

  53. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 9:20 PM

    Home plate umpire and crew chief at tonight's Nats-Cubs game? The one and only Angel Hernandez.NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!

  54. baseballswami - May 10, 2013 at 9:24 PM

    Arggggggh!

  55. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 9:26 PM

    Well. Tonight should be interesting in all kinds of different ways, then. *g* At least he won't be able to eject Harper for arguing, tonight!

  56. IKN8wxU2 - May 10, 2013 at 9:31 PM

    Let's hope all of our homeruns are out by a wide margin.

  57. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 9:38 PM

    I hope there are no plays at the plate…

  58. MicheleS - May 10, 2013 at 9:46 PM

    I sincerely hope there is no Internet access in Heaven so that my Dad can't read this… GO NATS! GO ROSS! Beat the CUBS!! GYFNG!!!waiting for the anvil to drop from the skies

  59. Candide - May 10, 2013 at 10:06 PM

    David Proctor said… Home plate umpire and crew chief at tonight's Nats-Cubs game? The one and only Angel Hernandez.What with the multiple high-profile umpiring embarrassments this week, is it too much to hope Hernandez will be on good behavior? He's already made the papers once this week.

  60. JaneB - May 10, 2013 at 10:09 PM

    MicheleS maybe it will miss you and hit Angel Hernandez.

  61. nats guy - May 10, 2013 at 10:11 PM

    Peric,You're so smart you also pimped Seth Bynum, JD Martin, Jorge Padilla, Matt Antonelli. Where are they now. Even an idiot strikes gold once in a while if he digs enough holes.

  62. natsfan1a - May 10, 2013 at 10:12 PM

    lol, Michele. I like JaneB's solution (although they'd probably decide that it wasn't a hit after review).

  63. A DC Wonk - May 10, 2013 at 10:14 PM

    a Nationals club that was approaching panic-modeWere they? Or was it just the fans? ;-)

  64. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 10:20 PM

    Eury Perez not in the lineup tonight for Syracuse. Looks like the decision has been made.

  65. Steady Eddie - May 10, 2013 at 10:31 PM

    JaneB — are you in your regular seats tonight?

  66. NatsJack in Florida - May 10, 2013 at 10:32 PM

    Only option would be Eury. He's shown that he can handle the bat and he's the only defensive option above AA.

  67. peric - May 10, 2013 at 10:40 PM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  68. peric - May 10, 2013 at 10:41 PM

    Only option would be Eury. He's shown that he can handle the bat and he's the only defensive option above AA.If defense is a must he's your man.

  69. peric - May 10, 2013 at 10:43 PM

    a Nationals club that was approaching panic-modeSwitching lineups around in Riggleman-esque fashion? When Davey has said all along he likes set lineups? Yes I would say so Wonk.

  70. peric - May 10, 2013 at 10:44 PM

    Oh yeah Antonelli. Well he sure looked like he could play 2nd base as well if not better than Lombo defensively and he was hitting. And? A former #1 draft pick for the Padres? One has to suspect there was something amiss there … whether injury or otherwise because his performances weren't all that bad.

  71. MicheleS - May 10, 2013 at 11:02 PM

    UGH.. Angel Hernandez.. that's my dad at work right there

  72. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 11:03 PM

    Dan Kolko ‏@masnKolko 2mAngel Hernandez announced as home plate umpire. #Nats Park crowd boos him

  73. Gonat - May 10, 2013 at 11:05 PM

    NatsJack in Florida said… Only option would be Eury. He's shown that he can handle the bat and he's the only defensive option above AA. May 10, 2013 6:32 PM ________________________________Certainly looking the best from the rightie hitters standpoint who can play good OF.I think Corey Brown is still on the DL and he's a leftie.

  74. MicheleS - May 10, 2013 at 11:07 PM

    If you get WGN.. it's on that channel as well. Will be looking in on that broadcast to see what they have to say about the Nats

  75. UnkyD - May 10, 2013 at 11:16 PM

    Am I being overly sensitive to note that some of our pitchers are allowing too dawgone many runs, in the first inning, this year?

  76. MicheleS - May 10, 2013 at 11:20 PM

    GHOST.. WGN guys commenting on how RZ stands SO far off the plate.

  77. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 11:20 PM

    Angel Hernandez already strikes.

  78. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 11:20 PM

    Ryan, please don't get ejected.

  79. Harpo - May 10, 2013 at 11:22 PM

    "MicheleS said… GHOST.. WGN guys commenting on how RZ stands SO far off the plate."Don't blow up Ghost of Steve M.s head any more than it is.

  80. Candide - May 10, 2013 at 11:30 PM

    David Proctor said… Angel Hernandez already strikes.I think you misspelled "stinks."

  81. baseballswami - May 10, 2013 at 11:30 PM

    I am not near a tv. What the heck is going on?

  82. MicheleS - May 10, 2013 at 11:33 PM

    SWAMI.. not much going on.. Det gave up a hit to Castro who scored on ground outs. Angel Hernandez is still a turd. 1-0 Cubs over Nats

  83. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 11:33 PM

    LaRoche keeps going to left on his contact lately – timing still off, or trying to beat the shift?

  84. MicheleS - May 10, 2013 at 11:34 PM

    SWAMI.. Ian just got a dribbler hit.and Espi got on by an error by Smarzjda (Spelling -whatever) so 2 on no out with Tyler Moore up.

  85. Harpo - May 10, 2013 at 11:35 PM

    Wasn't Szmardjia a Wide Receiver? Scored a dropped pass.

  86. MicheleS - May 10, 2013 at 11:35 PM

    1 out sorry.. Roche got an out and Now 2 outs.. Tyler popped out

  87. jeffwx - May 10, 2013 at 11:35 PM

    another error for cubs pitchers1st and 2nd and 1 outbut tyler popsout

  88. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 11:35 PM

    At least Tyler made contact?

  89. NatsJack in Florida - May 10, 2013 at 11:35 PM

    Pathetic.

  90. MicheleS - May 10, 2013 at 11:37 PM

    ZUUUUKKKEE Hit off the scoreboard with a DOUBLE and now 2-1 NATS

  91. jeffwx - May 10, 2013 at 11:37 PM

    clutch hit by SUZ

  92. Harpo - May 10, 2013 at 11:37 PM

    Good job suzuki

  93. NatsLady - May 10, 2013 at 11:37 PM

    Why would you pitch to Suzuki? Det is the WORST hitter/.

  94. NatsJack in Florida - May 10, 2013 at 11:37 PM

    Suzuki, not pathetic.

  95. jeffwx - May 10, 2013 at 11:38 PM

    my goal in life is to post before MicheleS but I'm too old I guess

  96. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 11:38 PM

    No one should ever pitch to any hitter in front of Ross.

  97. Harpo - May 10, 2013 at 11:42 PM

    "NatsJack in Florida said… Pathetic."I thought your word was stinks. Do you ever have anything nice to say.

  98. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 11:42 PM

    Ross has to throw offspeed. He simply has to. Major league hitters will learn to hit the fastball.

  99. MicheleS - May 10, 2013 at 11:43 PM

    jeffwx.. you are not old.. I was smart and took a typing class in high school, wanted to be sure that i wasn't using the one finger tap on the key board

  100. Harpo - May 10, 2013 at 11:43 PM

    Detwiler is pitching BP. He isn't fooling anybody, not even the pitcher.What is going on with him.

  101. MicheleS - May 10, 2013 at 11:43 PM

    OH good lord.. Ross.. double to the Pitcher and another double to Castro.. 2-2..GEESH ross

  102. jeffwx - May 10, 2013 at 11:44 PM

    how can Hernandez still be an major league ump.I just hear Hernandez misses a hr call in cleveland the other night.He's on the take.

  103. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 11:44 PM

    Ross leaving pitches up a bit.

  104. jeffwx - May 10, 2013 at 11:46 PM

    Michele, this modern technology is tough…texting on small portable phones…this darn macbook keyboard…Should have went with the manual keyboard

  105. EmDash - May 10, 2013 at 11:47 PM

    I think he can do okay without breaking stuff, but he needs to locate. That's his bread and butter, fastball command. When he doesn't have that, it's a long outing.

  106. Harpo - May 10, 2013 at 11:49 PM

    Bernadina to Zuk! Good and lucky!

  107. NatsJack in Florida - May 10, 2013 at 11:49 PM

    Gotta love the Shark!

  108. Gonat - May 10, 2013 at 11:50 PM

    Cubs are hitting everything hard that they can get a bat on. Saved by that stud rightfielder to an athletic play by the OF.

  109. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    EmDash, like FP said, if Ross can locate like he did early, he'll do fine with just fastballs. But he's not always going to be able to locate and he needs a plan B. He can't just keep throwing fastballs when guys are teeing it up. That's the problem right now.

  110. Exposremains - May 10, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    Det used to annoy me , than I started to really like him and now he's starting to annoy me again. I don't understand this fastball party. Doesn't he have other pitches. It worked for a few games in the beggining of the year but it's not working anymore.

  111. Exposremains - May 10, 2013 at 11:54 PM

    I bet Ramos would have dropped that ball, Suzuki is really good at making the homeplate plays

  112. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 11:55 PM

    Ramos has been better this year about catching the infield throws.

  113. NatsJack in Florida - May 10, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    All the Nats have to do is stay close and get Marmol in the game.Among others.

  114. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    Outfield*

  115. Harpo - May 10, 2013 at 11:58 PM

    Samardzija sets Zimmerman up on the outside again. You can't hit what you can't reach. 2 more K's.

  116. David Proctor - May 10, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    Leadoff doubles everywhere…

  117. peric - May 10, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    Sure looks to me like Suzuki is a keeper. Vesting option and all.

  118. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:00 AM

    Did that ball bounce off of the drying agent on the field FP.

  119. EmDash - May 11, 2013 at 12:00 AM

    He probably does need more pitches to be elite. But every time I've seen him try they get crushed too. This is generally who he is.

  120. peric - May 11, 2013 at 12:01 AM

    Samardzija sets Zimmerman up on the outside again. You can't hit what you can't reach. 2 more K's.Eventually, he'll get his bat speed back or he'll adjust to his new physical reality.

  121. BxJaycobb - May 11, 2013 at 12:02 AM

    Ross has been awfully bad tonight. This is the Cubs. It's not Murderers' Row. When you're not pin-point with the gas and not getting run on your two seamers, it's time to throw an occasional curve or change up. If he can't throw a curve or change-up anywhere close to the plate, then that's something he's going to need to learn to do if he wants to develop into an above-average, middle of the rotation starter in the majors. Until that, he's going to be fairly mediocre. And there's nothing wrong with being mediocre, but that's what it is.

  122. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    I like LaRoche. So professional.

  123. David Proctor - May 11, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    Well Ross has done a decent job of minimizing damage (with some help from the Shark). But if this were a better lineup, it'd be 4-2 right now.

  124. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:07 AM

    Can not deny the pericillian logic that it would be nice to have some more pop in the lineup..But nice that we could beat a team with some of the best (The Tigers with Miguel and Prince ) cause our pitching makes up for the lack of power.oh and nice hit Adam

  125. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    OK, as long as I'm liking LaRoche, nice single. Let's do something, boys.

  126. David Proctor - May 11, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    IAN!!!

  127. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    oh..nice pop Desmond

  128. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    Thank you, Desi. Thank you, muchly.

  129. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    Detwiler better hang on to this lead! DESi!!!!!!!!

  130. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    i beat michele!!!

  131. EmDash - May 11, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    That LaRoche head shake at the strike call is his version of cursing the ump, I think.More runs!

  132. MicheleS - May 11, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    DESI BOMB!!!

  133. MicheleS - May 11, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    Congrats Jeff. I was admiring the Desi bomb!

  134. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:10 AM

    How didn't that HR go further. In the Great American Smallpark that would have been in the upper deck.

  135. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:11 AM

    Is that all you were admiring….All the women I know are so into this guy….I don't see it, personally

  136. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2013 at 12:11 AM

    Good job Ian. And LaRoche is over Mendoza again!

  137. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:11 AM

    Yah, NatsJack, TylerMo is pathetic. Yah, I'm not calling him TyMo or T-Mo.

  138. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2013 at 12:12 AM

    And Tyler going the other way. That can go along way to getting him going.

  139. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:13 AM

    Clippard only available for pinch hitting duty

  140. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:15 AM

    better get to the 5th…big storms out west

  141. David Proctor - May 11, 2013 at 12:17 AM

    Span is incredible, but how in the world is the pitcher taking swings like this?!

  142. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:18 AM

    jeez….top 5 best nats of catch with the shark gems

  143. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2013 at 12:18 AM

    Gotta love the D-Span!

  144. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:18 AM

    #SPANNING

  145. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 12:18 AM

    Span! That has got to be a Web Gem. Det, if you need Web Gems from your outfielders, that is not good.

  146. David Proctor - May 11, 2013 at 12:20 AM

    ANOTHER DOUBLE?

  147. Candide - May 11, 2013 at 12:20 AM

    F.P. analyzing the difference between Span and Bernadina is spot-on.

  148. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:20 AM

    Does Zimmerman get to anything not next to him. No attempt any more to knock anything down.

  149. peric - May 11, 2013 at 12:20 AM

    Hmmm … he did look like Curt Flood there they way he went back on that ball. Flood played shallower still … he appears to be getting better at that.You can almost be sure that Flood is the model CF that Rizzo has in his mind.

  150. MicheleS - May 11, 2013 at 12:20 AM

    Jeff.. desi is a good dude and we women are suckers for that

  151. peric - May 11, 2013 at 12:22 AM

    Zimmerman is still healing from shoulder surgery. He can't risk the dives that originally were the cause of said injury. Again, this is what Anthony Rendon is prepping for in Harrisburg.

  152. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:22 AM

    ohhhhhhhhhhh…that's been my problemI hear HROD is a pretty good that…where are his groupies

  153. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:22 AM

    Did the Nats bother to send scouts to check out the Cubs or figure they sucked and it wasn't worth it. Espinosa finally moves closer to 1st base.

  154. peric - May 11, 2013 at 12:24 AM

    And the self-appointed expert here should have noted the difference between LaRoche's line drive and that of Ian Desmond and Tyler Moore. Their line drives looked like they would decapitate someone. LaRoche with your basic Larry Biitner single.

  155. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:24 AM

    Curt Flood…Maybe Span will challenge the Nats Reserve Clause for inappropriately high beer prices

  156. Joe Seamhead - May 11, 2013 at 12:24 AM

    Mrs. Seamhead rocking her Mother's Day D Span jersey.

  157. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:25 AM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  158. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:27 AM

    Still too close on these throwovers to 1st base.

  159. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:27 AM

    Biittner was a good contact hitter. His best season came with the Cubs in 1977 when he played in a career-high 138 games, hit 28 doubles and batted .298. from the wacky world web

  160. peric - May 11, 2013 at 12:30 AM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  161. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:30 AM

    That behind the plate view looks like Zimm has moved even closer to the Cubs dugout. Samardzjia doesn't come close to the strike zone except that 3-0.

  162. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:31 AM

    Peric, you were Groucho for a day so what you talking about. Harpo was one of Bryce's dads nicknames back when he was a kid.

  163. peric - May 11, 2013 at 12:31 AM

    Biittner was a good contact hitter.Precisely. Just in the beginning there were no doubles. But a nice .300 plus batting average. LaRoche is now a savvy contact hitter. Not a power guy.

  164. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:32 AM

    nope that was Ruben Delgado…The Village Idiot

  165. MicheleS - May 11, 2013 at 12:32 AM

    Mrs Seamhead is one lucky lady!

  166. peric - May 11, 2013 at 12:32 AM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  167. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    Desi with a clutched 2 out RBI.

  168. peric - May 11, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    Curt Flood…Maybe Span will challenge the Nats Reserve Clause for inappropriately high beer pricesFielding wise probably the best CF of the modern era.

  169. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    Thats what your supposed to do with that outside pitch.

  170. David Proctor - May 11, 2013 at 12:35 AM

    This is what I love to see! Samardjiza isn't a scrub either. He's actually a pretty darn good pitcher.

  171. MicheleS - May 11, 2013 at 12:35 AM

    And the rout is on.. and we didn't need to get into that horrendous bullpen!Dad must have converted to a Nats fan up in Heaven

  172. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2013 at 12:35 AM

    Wow…Ian continues his doubles stuff and ALR is hitting .210 and then Danny joins the party!Gotta love it.

  173. peric - May 11, 2013 at 12:35 AM

    Espinosa close to 10 double already. And LaRoche?

  174. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:35 AM

    Espinosa with an easy swing that dents the wall. You have to like but NatsJack says he stinks.

  175. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:36 AM

    Wait a second Peric, I'm wondering about your objectivity….LaRoche had 33 hrs last year, Bittner never hit 29 in his whole caree.Nice pop for them Nats

  176. Drew - May 11, 2013 at 12:37 AM

    R.E.M. was right.Everybody hits, sometimes.

  177. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:38 AM

    "MicheleS said… Dad must have converted to a Nats fan up in Heaven"Chicago won a World Series this century. Washington DC hasn't. They're nice up there in Heaven. I bet your Dad likes Bryce!

  178. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:39 AM

    Never saw Flood play….but I did see the say hey kid

  179. MicheleS - May 11, 2013 at 12:39 AM

    Ummm Harpo.. Dad hated the White Sox

  180. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:40 AM

    Desmond is now a triple from the cycle!

  181. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:41 AM

    The White Sox don't count!!!!Do they still play the blues in Chicago ( A Cubs fan's lament)

  182. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:43 AM

    Of course MicheleS as all Cubbie fans do and vice versa, just ask Obama, Heaven sees it as 1 Chicago with that Heavenly unity. It may not be fair but thats the same rules for the Angels/Dodgers and Yankees/Mets.

  183. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:43 AM

    A Dying Cubs fan's last request by Steve GoodmanRead it and learnAnd I like Gino's Easthttp://www.baseball-almanac.com/poetry/po_cubs.shtml

  184. Candide - May 11, 2013 at 12:45 AM

    If rooting for the Cubbies your entire life isn't Hell on Earth… Anyone who endures that has earned Heaven in the afterlife.(Cub-to-Nats fan convert friend is at the game tonight. Just Facebooked "Wings!!")

  185. MicheleS - May 11, 2013 at 12:46 AM

    Awww Jeff.. getting dusty in my house remembering Steve Goodman.. snifffle.. We were a Gino's east family.

  186. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 12:46 AM

    Yes, they do. South Sider here, born and bred.

  187. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:46 AM

    Is Bartman the devil ?

  188. MicheleS - May 11, 2013 at 12:46 AM

    Candide.. the cubs killed my dad.. he gave me permission to switch teams, he didn't want me to be miserable for the rest of my life

  189. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:47 AM

    Nice video on Bryce Harper Swing video by Kilgore

  190. David Proctor - May 11, 2013 at 12:48 AM

    Hey look, Ross made contact a few times! Baby steps.

  191. MicheleS - May 11, 2013 at 12:48 AM

    NatsLady and I would have a ton of fun razzing each other if we lived in Chicago.. Thanfully we are in DC.And no Bartman is not the devil. real cubs fan's know who is to blame for that loss.. he played SS that game

  192. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:49 AM

    Yeah…Steve Goodman was brilliant…We lost him too soon tooThe White sox, NL…Well Bill Veeck had some good ideas….did he do 10 Cent beer night and Disco Sucks night….those were promotions….He'd have real presidents racing everynight…not these over sized bobbleheads

  193. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2013 at 12:51 AM

    Only problem tonite is you know Henry is coming in.

  194. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:54 AM

    "Harpo said… Desmond is now a triple from the cycle! May 10, 2013 8:40 PM"F.P. owes me a beer. The crack staff at MASN is asleep.

  195. NatsJack in Florida - May 11, 2013 at 12:55 AM

    FP just said Ian needs a triple for the cycle.Wow…is he the first to get to the point where you only need a triple?

  196. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 12:55 AM

    "NatsJack in Florida said… Only problem tonite is you know Henry is coming in."Even as the Red Sox and Rays are in dire need for bullpen help, I doubt they'd take Henry for a Single-A batboy.

  197. David Proctor - May 11, 2013 at 12:56 AM

    Uh oh…Ross pulled something?

  198. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 12:57 AM

    Well, Det did OK, but he got a LOT of help from his fielders. He needs to take them out to dinner.

  199. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:57 AM

    Alex GonzalezI think the real bad guy for the cubs was: In case you donot know the story, it was during game 4 of the Series in 1945 that a fan by the name of Billy Sianis had two box seat tickets. He came to the game with his billy goat. The goat was a problem. It smelled and was bothering the other fans. P. K. Wrigley was the owner of the Cubs and asked him to remove the goat. That didnot please Billy Sianis and as he was leaving he placed the curse the Cubs, "they ain't gonna win no more".

  200. jeffwx - May 11, 2013 at 12:58 AM

    Just goes to show you…if an old guy brings a goat to the game, don't throw him out until you know where the smell is coming from.

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