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Instant analysis: Cubs 8, Nats 2

May 11, 2013, 11:14 PM EDT

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Stephen Strasburg was brilliant for four innings, then awful in the fifth.

Game in a nutshell: Everything looked great for four innings, especially for Stephen Strasburg, who was dominating like he hadn't at any previous point this season. And then … complete meltdown in the fifth inning. Ryan Zimmerman committe another throwing error on a routine play, and Strasburg couldn't pick up his teammate. He let the Cubs score four runs (all unearned) before the inning ended, then was unceremoniously yanked by manager Davey Johnson. Zach Duke tried to put out the fire but only added fuel, giving up four more runs in the sixth. The rest was inconsequential, with the Nationals slogging their way through the remainder of the afternoon and suffering one of their least-inspiring losses of the season, bringing an unsightly end to their five-game winning streak.

Fielding lowlight: Any breakdown of today's game has to include the play that completely shifted momentum: Zimmerman'sRead more »

  1. David Proctor - May 11, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    Just gotta win series. Anything else is gravy. Got a chance to do that tomorrow.At least this game gave some guys some work.

  2. Exposremains - May 11, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 11, 2013 at 11:20 PM

    strasburg all season has pitched terrible once there is an error. veru consistent all season. So it was obvious it would happen again and it did.As for Zim he says shoulder is fine. if so then he is not doing the job.Ryan was my favorite Nat in 2007 probably not in top 50 percentile now. It is sad to see how weak he has gotton.Was compared to Brooks Robinson, now more like Steve Sax.

  4. baseballswami - May 11, 2013 at 11:21 PM

    Throw this game away. Desi and Henry(!) were great. No offense, by the way. As in hitting. . One error with two outs and 8 and 9 coming up should not result in Armageddon.. Maybe pitching in San Diego will help? Glad it's not LA.

  5. Exposremains - May 11, 2013 at 11:21 PM

    I wish there was a way to take away that contract extension for Zim and give it to JZim. Sometimes I get worried that with all the injury, he,ll never be the same.

  6. Exposremains - May 11, 2013 at 11:23 PM

    -injuries

  7. EmDash - May 11, 2013 at 11:26 PM

    Bummer of a way to lose, but at least the Braves lost even worse.Is it possible that Stras's problem isn't all mental, but partially to do with pitching out of the stretch? He hasn't seemed sharp when not in the wind-up so far this year. Maybe his mechanics get a bit messed up there.

  8. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 11, 2013 at 11:27 PM

    Only one person hates zim's errors more than me My wife.She says I am grumpy after a loss whete either we dont hit nor fieldshe says I am ok when it is a problem.Intersting.

  9. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 11, 2013 at 11:30 PM

    Pitching out of the stretch is part of it, but after an error he mopes and its worse.

  10. Whack-a-Mule - May 11, 2013 at 11:31 PM

    Mule is disgusted.-Zimmerman is on a pace for 32+ errors this season.-Strasburg, who was cruising until Zim's first error, suddenly becomes Ricky Vaughn (as though Zim "tanked that ball on purpose"). This is not the California Penal League. Strasburg cannot have Carlos Zambrano as a role model.-Duke = D.F.A.

  11. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 11:34 PM

    EmDash,that's possible. That's been suggested before. I wonder how much time pitchers devote to working their mechanics from the stretch.

  12. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 11:37 PM

    "baseballswami said… Throw this game away. Desi and Henry(!) were great"Henry gave up no runs just like Mattheus. I guess Mattheus was great also.

  13. baseballswami - May 11, 2013 at 11:38 PM

    Det did a bit of that body language thing last year. I hope he was taking note of how destructive it is. Will Stras face reporters today? Or be sheltered? He needs to learn to man up after failure like regular people have to do. And not be rude. So despite the ragging on Zim- he has not made two errors in a game in three years. Ray Knight is correct when he says that Zim had saved this team' s butt a million times. He deserves a grace period. Yes, it's a concern- but it's time the team picked him up until he is better or moves position.

  14. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 11:39 PM

    The funny thing is that just before Zim's error, Bernadina and Espy had picked up Stras with a great play. If they don't make that play–and get that call–Stras is in a worse situation with no one to blame except himself. So if Valbuena triples, does Stras give up on the game, or is that only when your teammates let you down?

  15. David Proctor - May 11, 2013 at 11:40 PM

    I was thinking the same thing NatsLady.

  16. baseballswami - May 11, 2013 at 11:41 PM

    NatsLady– exactly!!!! Earlier I was speculating on how he would have pitched had the guy reached base cleanly. How many times has the defense bailed him out?

  17. baseballswami - May 11, 2013 at 11:43 PM

    Davey– it's a team sport.

  18. David Proctor - May 11, 2013 at 11:45 PM

    I said it in the other thread, but as bad as Stras' meltdown was…and it was bad…I don't think that lost us the game. I know we ended up only scoring 2 runs, but if Duke could've held it at 4, I really think we would've won the game. The momentum was swinging back towards us and then they just stole it all back.

  19. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 11:45 PM

    Also, I don't understand why Ramos or Cat or Desi or all of them didn't go to the mound as Stras was unwinding. The only explanation I can think of is that Stras has made it clear to them he doesn't want to be approached on the mound in that situation.

  20. Eric - May 11, 2013 at 11:48 PM

    In was annoyed/concerned by RZim's throwing error, but Stras overwhelmingly eclipsed that, IMO. There's no reason why that inning had to include 1 run after Zim's error, let alone four.

  21. Harpo - May 11, 2013 at 11:48 PM

    For those who preach WAR as a great comparative stat, Rendon in 8 games has a WAR of 0.1 and Zimm in 21 games has a WAR of 0.1 as of yesterday and may drop down to 0 after today's game.Since WAR is cumulative, Rendon actually has a higher value.

  22. baseballswami - May 11, 2013 at 11:49 PM

    NatsLady– once again, just what I was thinking. And who cares how he feels about it? Too bad Cat can't slap him and say- snap out of it!! Again– he has been too indulged.. Zim facing up to reporters- manning up. Stras? I will be interested to know if he talked to reporters off camera. Part of the job. Storen talked to them after game 5.

  23. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 11:49 PM

    The last time Duke appeared he also gave up a bunch of runs, and in my write-up I sardonically thanked him for reducing the Nats' chances of winning the game from unlikely to basically NONE. You can win a 4-1 game. Duke put the game out of reach (although a grand slam would have been nice, it would not have won it).

  24. DJB - May 11, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    No long-term contracts, unless you are a sure-fire hall of famer on the right side of thirty, preferably 28. The Zimm contract is a fundamental error that will haunt this franchise for years. I get in arguments with a co-worker over whether the Cards should have signed Pujols. He says they owed him, and I say "owing" someone is not an appropriate justification for a winning franchise. I think I was right. I hated the Zimm contract, and he is nowhere near the player that Pujols was. The Rays will also regret the Longoria contract.

  25. EmDash - May 11, 2013 at 11:57 PM

    If you have MLB network, they're showing Tigers-Indians, and the Indians have a pitcher named Jiminez starting with the oddest delivery I've ever seen. It's interesting to watch.

  26. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 11:57 PM

    WAR is not a good stat for comparing Rendon and RZ at this point. Bourne has sat at 0.9 WAR for weeks and he's been on the DL. He had a hot start and (obviously) did nothing bad since to negate that WAR. You need several months of production (or lack of it) before WAR is useful.

  27. NatsLady - May 11, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    EmDash, is that Ubaldo? He was with the Rockies and he was going to be their Ace–until he wasn't.

  28. nats guy - May 12, 2013 at 12:01 AM

    When I said it earlier I got beat up. Zimmerman is still hurt. Cannot hit with power, doesn't have enough bat speed to hit the outside ptch, cannot make throws from 3rd anymore. Shoulders are hard thigs to fix. Usually they can't be. I know I have a bad one. You can rehab them till the cows come home. Strasburg needs to grow up and watch a professional like JZim handle adversity. For that matter so does Gio.Zach Duke does not belong in MLB.

  29. Harpo - May 12, 2013 at 12:03 AM

    NatsLady, I'm not a big fan of WAR at all. Still, its a haunting reminder of how poor Ryan Zimmerman has been overall when the player that took his spot at 3rd base in just 8 games matched what Zimm did in almost 3 times as man games.The Bourne comparison means nothing. He's earned a 0.9 in a premium position in the short time he has played.What you can't do is compare players on WAR without considering the amount of games they have played.

  30. EmDash - May 12, 2013 at 12:03 AM

    That's him, NatsLady. The way he whips his arm is something else.

  31. Dan Strong - May 12, 2013 at 12:04 AM

    Duke is a disaster. That is all.

  32. Eric - May 12, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    It consistently surprises me how quickly people reach for the ax from their arm chair after an ugly loss. This is the same injury-ridden team that played some incredible winning baseball against some incredible teams. And, that has clawed its way back to 1 game out of first.Some of y'all are acting a lot like Stras ;)

  33. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 12:07 AM

    nats guy, I don't know about shoulders, but my knee will very likely never be the same (in fact, it gets steadily worse), and did you see that story in the Post about the NFL player who had 24 knee surgeries? RZ has a lot of miles on that body, which is young in years, but old in terms of hard major-league play. I wonder if that time he tumbled into home plate and tore up his shoulder is the root cause.

  34. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:07 AM

    I don't think Duke gets the DFA Seldon's Mule … I think he gets the outright release. And Rosenbaum recalled. Like Stammen who was exclusively a starter when he was first called up to do this job Rosenbaum can hopefully finish the job adjusting to the role that he started with the Rockies. Chris Young looks worse than Duke in AAA. They love his 82 mph meatball in the International League.

  35. Gerardo Rodriguez - May 12, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    Zim should imagine there is a man in first and start an imaginary double play every time he got an easy ground ball to him . :)

  36. original Nats Fan - May 12, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    I'm sure Zim feels worse than anyone about the errors, but they happen. Nobody's perfect, including all of those trying to throw Zim under the bus. What distresses me is how Stras lost focus and basically fell apart. He's had issues with the mound [Cleveland?], Icy Hot, umpires calls, errors. He's going to have to learn to overcome stuff like that if he wants to be an ace.

  37. Eric - May 12, 2013 at 12:13 AM

    "Zim should imagine there is a man in first and start an imaginary double play every time he got an easy ground ball to him . :)"I had the same thought! He should treat every thrown to first like a rush job, because he always seems to hit his target with those.

  38. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 12, 2013 at 12:13 AM

    i go into every game assuming they will win. I assume they will win tomorrow.strasburghas given up 17 earned runs and 8 unearned.

  39. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 12:14 AM

    Eric, I think there is a difference between "reaching for the axe" and trying to diagnose what is a problem. I have a lot of faith in Ryan Z., I've watched him come back from a lot of things for a lot of years–and I've watched him give a lot to this team, for example last year with the cortisone shots. I was in favor of the signing, not as a "reward" for service, but because I feel RZ can give good service to this team for a long time.

  40. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:15 AM

    When I said it earlier I got beat up. Zimmerman is still hurt. GoSM and I both observed and said the same thing I'm not sure how you got "beat up" when we two were pretty much saying the same far more often. I got beat up for saying Rendon would be called up sooner rather than later because I saw Zim struggling. I got beat up because I said Zim was moving to first base and Rendon to third base. This is still what is going to happen. Rendon isn't going to second base as I said, he is going to third. With Espy, Lombo and the hot hitting Kobernus they don't need someone to play 2nd base. They do need a third baseman.Zim is still rehabbing/recovering there is no doubt. The problem, again, is that Zim is the best bat in the lineup when he's healthy. They need him to get healthy enough to hit. The fielding is ancillary as long as its competent. This wouldn't be such an issue if they hadn't signed LaRoche to 2 years. Zim could just slide over to first base and they could make LaRoche a left-handed bat off the bench. There's no reason why Rendon couldn't use Davey as his refinishing school as Harper did at third base. Now, both players likely will have to prove over most of a season that they need to change. By then it may be too late.

  41. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 12:15 AM

    I mentioned the same a few days ago. It's unorthodox, but just station Espy at second and have Zim throw to him like a relay.

  42. NatsJack in Florida - May 12, 2013 at 12:16 AM

    When the goin' gets tough, Strasberg disappears.

  43. David Proctor - May 12, 2013 at 12:16 AM

    Strasburg's ERA is still very good (3.10) but of course that doesn't tell the story because of how many unearned runs he's give up. And it's not like many of these errors are sending runs home. Today's error was 2 outs, nobody on. The one against Atlanta was the same and Strasburg gave up the HR to Gattis (although that really wasn't a bad pitch).

  44. Harpo - May 12, 2013 at 12:17 AM

    I didn't know someone kept stats on broken bats per pitcher and according to the broadcasters I'm listening to have said Jordan Zimmermann leads the majors with breaking 11 batter's bats.

  45. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 12, 2013 at 12:20 AM

    strasburg could have take care of the ptoblen, but didnt bother. He moped instead. once quits moping he will be fine.

  46. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:21 AM

    The same thing happened to Zim's team mate and shortstop at UVA Mark Reynolds. Same deal. He too had to move to first base. The difference is that Zim is a far better hitter than Mark Reynolds when he is healthy. And he hasn't been completely healthy for an extended period of time for over three years.

  47. Chevy Chase Bob - May 12, 2013 at 12:22 AM

    I think Zimmerman has a shoulder issue much like Adam's two years ago. I also think Stras should see a sports shrink.

  48. Chevy Chase Bob - May 12, 2013 at 12:23 AM

    I think Zimmerman has a shoulder issue much like Adam's two years ago. I also think Stras should see a sports shrink.

  49. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:23 AM

    strasburg could have take care of the ptoblen, but didnt bother. He moped instead. once quits moping he will be fine.Its just ONE game. BUT, Stras making Zim look bad can't help with team chemistry in the clubhouse. Have to wonder if perhaps Davey might not be inclined to hold another meeting.Perhaps Stras knows Zim isn't completely recovered … and it doesn't sit well with him. Especially with Rendon on the cusp.

  50. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:25 AM

    I think Zimmerman has a shoulder issue much like Adam's two years ago.LaRoche's problem was repaired with surgery … as Zim's was in the offseason. However, its hard not to suspect that Zim's was a far more extensive and serious repair. LaRoche came out like gangbusters right out of ST after his surgery.

  51. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:27 AM

    I mentioned the same a few days ago. It's unorthodox, but just station Espy at second and have Zim throw to him like a relay.That's silly. If Zim can't play third. You call up Rendon station him at third base and put Zim on the DL until everyone is sure he is ready. Then next season you move him to first base where he belongs.

  52. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 12:30 AM

    Ryan himself said a while back he didn't think his shoulder would be back to "normal" until at least June. I just now recalled that, and if he is having inconsistent twinges, that could explain his inconsistent throws.

  53. Harpo - May 12, 2013 at 12:31 AM

    "peric said… GoSM and I both observed and said the same thing I'm not sure how you got "beat up" when we two were pretty much saying the same far more often."Aren't you 2 special. Get a room. He's still in recovery and his brain and arm and body are just not working well together. The team needs Zimm's bat and the problem is his bat isn't real good right now and his fielding overall stinks. Rizzo and Davey have a very difficult situation in front of them. Publicly they will deny there's a problem however privately they aren't stupid. Everyone can see it. Zim would need to be hitting like Miguel Cabrera to justify his poor fielding. Its more than just the throwing, his range is worse than all other players that have played at 3rd this season.

  54. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:32 AM

    Speaking of Reynolds he has 11 homers, 6 doubles, a .283/,359/.987 OPS mostly at first base with around 45 innings at third with the Indians this season.That should at the very least be Zim.

  55. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 12:33 AM

    If Stras is messing with team chemistry then he needs to step back and remember that no matter how great he is, he only plays one game of every five. And unless he strikes out 27 of 27 batters and calls his own pitches, he needs teammates.

  56. Laddie Blah Blah - May 12, 2013 at 12:33 AM

    The kind of thing that happened to Stras today has happened to JZ far more frequently in the past. Maybe that helped make Jordan the tough bulldog that he is. Easy to tell a young pitcher to get his emotions under control, quite another for him to do it. Stras sought counsel from JZ while he was doing his own TJ rehab. Maybe JZ can also give him some perspective on how he handled even worse adversity in the not so distant past.It looked like Stras was going to pitch a complete game shutout until that error. There was no good reason why he could not still have done it, afterwards. Stras was absolutely electric right up until that point, and totally ineffective immediately after it. Davey knows his players as well as any field manager in baseball. This is a situation where he can be at his best. Strasburg is just so good in every situation, except when dealing with adversity. As Yogi is alleged to have said, "90% of the game is 100% mental." Exhibit A on the Nats is Espinosa, and SS has become Exhibit B. Maybe Ryan is already Exhibit C. How about the Lerners swap out the trainer and hire a shrink, instead?

  57. Harpo - May 12, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    "NatsLady said… Ryan himself said a while back he didn't think his shoulder would be back to "normal" until at least June. I just now recalled that, and if he is having inconsistent twinges, that could explain his inconsistent throws."You are smart enough in your keen observation to see that his range to his backhand has been awful. Also, no they are not going to have Zimm throw to 2nd for Espy to relay a throw onto 1st. I hope you were joking.

  58. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:35 AM

    Ryan himself said a while back he didn't think his shoulder would be back to "normal" until at least June. I just now recalled that, and if he is having inconsistent twinges, that could explain his inconsistent throws.Also likely why he is avoiding those diving web gems to his left he was doing almost every night at the beginning of last season. He did dive to the right for a ball that got past him. After that he had the error where the ball crept under his glove.If by "mental" you mean he is thinking about / favoring his injured shoulder? You are likely correct.

  59. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:37 AM

    And unless he strikes out 27 of 27 batters and calls his own pitches, he needs teammates.Exactly why the rationale for his meltdown may be the real problem not the game loss. Its a serious problem for Davey unless he wants to manage the Dodgers again.

  60. Harpo - May 12, 2013 at 12:37 AM

    Laddie Blah Blah, do you always quote like Ghost of Steve M? He quotes that Yogism once a month:As Yogi is alleged to have said, "90% of the game is 100% mental."

  61. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 12:42 AM

    Well said, Laddie–and I well remember JZ's frustration and may I say, "immaturity." However, it's one thing to seek counsel on surgery and rehab, and quite another to seek counsel on "mental toughness." It shouldn't be, but it is. I would be you a lot of money that Stras thinks he IS mentally tough, that he's been through a lot and not only survived but excelled. He first has to admit that he HAS a problem–and unless one of his teammates says the same thing to him that we are saying (like an "intervention), he won't. He'll still keep thinking, "well, I was thrown off my rhythm by X, Y, or Z, and that's why I didn't win that game." Maybe there is a friend or an old coach in San Diego that can do that.

  62. BigCat - May 12, 2013 at 12:44 AM

    My boy HRod looked good

  63. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:45 AM

    "honk honk" — Harpo MarxThat's about all the drivel Harpo writes is worth: Honk honk honk

  64. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 12:46 AM

    I was working and didn't see the 2nd error. However, I have seen RZ not get balls down the line that it seemed to me he could have gotten. So there is more to it than just the throws, apparently. Nevertheless, it doesn't excuse Stras. Three of his four infielders are Gold Glove quality right now–many pitchers succeed with a lot less.

  65. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:47 AM

    I would be you a lot of money that Stras thinks he IS mentally tough, that he's been through a lot and not only survived but excelled. He is. What he lacks is the patience he displayed when he was recovering from the TJ surgery. He and JZimm were relentless in their comebacks from that. He also lacks the wisdom of experience.And again if Stras knows that Zim isn't right; it may be bugging the hell out of him.

  66. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 12, 2013 at 12:50 AM

    Laddie, great post. A lot of short memories. Look up the Burroughs kid who homered off of JZim after he didnt get a call from the ump. Stras better toughen up. Team sport.

  67. EmDash - May 12, 2013 at 12:52 AM

    Do we have any evidence Stras having issues is affecting team chemistry? Seems like a big supposition to me.

  68. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 12:53 AM

    BigCat–yep, HRod looked good, and didn't get flustered by the double. Also gave two innings, which has been a problem in the past. Low leverage, of course, but still, he looked good. That slider, wow.

  69. Dominats Vobiscum - May 12, 2013 at 12:54 AM

    It is said that what turned Stephen Strasburg from a fat tub of lard into a great pitcher was his college team mates calling him "Stephen Slothburg." I propose that until he learns how to pick up his team after facing a bit of adversity instead of sulking and blowing the game, the rest of the Nats should start calling him "Stephen Strasbust."

  70. baseballswami - May 12, 2013 at 12:54 AM

    As for Zach Duke– I cannot really be too hard on him as he has no real role with this team and has just not played enough. He is mis- cast on this team. But I do not buy the idea that all young pitchers act like Stras did because they certainly do not and ours have not. There were times JZ might have gotten out of sync and given up a home run. We thought that was a meltdown? Det had some issues last year where he did not cope well. But nothing like this. I would like to remind you that Stras did not even bother to cover the base defensively. He quit on his team and behaved horribly. I hear that he did talk to reporters after the game, but not on camera. Zim did. That 's leadership- owning up. Storen did after the worst moment a pitcher can live through. Responsibility. Everyone fails. You have to face it. I read his quote – it made no sense at all. Again– you are not more special than everyone else. Deal with it.

  71. peric - May 12, 2013 at 12:54 AM

    Right now Zim's ISO is .122 and LaRoche's is still lower at .113. Those are the two lowest ISO's of all the starters.

  72. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 12:57 AM

    EmDash–no. I wouldn't have thought so, peric brought it up as speculation. If a clubhouse is anything like a theater production, we have NO idea how guys interact with each other, except for the rare glimpses they permit.

  73. Exposremains - May 12, 2013 at 12:58 AM

    Ok DJ and Zim all said the politically correct things but there's no way the entire Nationals organization starting from the owners who gave 100M to Zim himself are not worried about Zim's throws and lack power.

  74. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 12, 2013 at 1:01 AM

    dDuke has a role as does everyone. come in and slam the door when called on.

  75. Harpo - May 12, 2013 at 1:01 AM

    The Ghost gives us the honor of coming on to praise his pupil Laddie. Are you writing for him now.

  76. BigCat - May 12, 2013 at 1:05 AM

    My opinion on Sra is that he can't handle Zimmerman being the "ace" now. He has been pampered his whole life. The thing that bothers the hell out of me is his "quitting" on the mound. Thats right…flat out quitting. He's a punk when things don't go his way. put Stammen in his spot and send Stra to Syracuse for a little seasoning. This ain't college anymore. Another thing. This is on McCatty to. When that big turd starts pouting on the mound after an error….you go get his ass….take him right out. He'll learn.

  77. nats guy - May 12, 2013 at 1:05 AM

    The problem with RZim's throwing is fixable. The hitting is a little harder to deal with. Essentially he now has the bat speed of a much older player. The league is beginning to notice and he is now seeing heat on the outside corner and he doesn't have the ability any longer to do anything with it. He can adjust his position at the plate and the kind of hits he gets (not as many extra base hits), but will he do it. Is that what the Nats want (I doubt it). Like I said the throwing is not his bggest problem.

  78. BigCat - May 12, 2013 at 1:16 AM

    Unfortunately, "competitiveness" is sometimes something you can't teach. I was very critical of Stra last year but backed off cause of his injury. As a starting pitcher…..or any pitcher , there is gonna be times in the game where you absolutely gotta suck it up and make some pitches. The eyes tell it all with Stra. When McCatty visits the mound in a tight spot, he looks like an 8 year old that has had his gum stolen. The old saying, do you want him in your foxhole when the mortars start landing? Nope…I don't

  79. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 1:20 AM

    So, Stras is as bull-headed as Espinosa…Guess he'll just have to figure it out inside himself, because "He's too good a pitcher to let adversity behind him let him down," Johnson said. "He's certainly capable of picking us up when somebody else — it's a team effort, you know, and errors are part of the game." Johnson said he would likely have a few words with his starter, but noted that pitching coach Steve McCatty had spoken to him about that sort of thing in the past.

  80. BigCat - May 12, 2013 at 1:21 AM

    Nats guy….you are right on. When the right shoulder is not right you can't fire through the ball at the plate

  81. NatsLady - May 12, 2013 at 1:24 AM

    So, it's not that Davey and McCatty don't see what we see. Of course they do. We all just have to wait, I guess, until Strasburg's psyche catches up with his talent.

  82. BigCat - May 12, 2013 at 1:25 AM

    So Stra is now 1-5? Good. Suck on it and like it!!

  83. Sec. 3, My Sofa - May 12, 2013 at 1:27 AM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  84. Sec. 3, My Sofa - May 12, 2013 at 1:30 AM

    Nasty smartphoneses…I hates 'em!

  85. Eric - May 12, 2013 at 1:32 AM

    "Eric, I think there is a difference between "reaching for the axe" and trying to diagnose what is a problem."I definitely agree.

  86. Sec. 3, My Sofa - May 12, 2013 at 1:34 AM

    "He has been pampered his whole life."IIRC, Strasburg was described as an overweight, out-of-shape afterthought until his senior year, and not especially pampered.Not that pampering has anything to do with the ability to concentrate, imo.

  87. Sec. 3, My Sofa - May 12, 2013 at 1:38 AM

    Which is not to say everybody in the park couldn't smell the meltdown coming after the error. After the walk, I was punched in the arm for wondering out loud, by my Cubs fan wife, mind you, what they could get for him in trade.

  88. Eric - May 12, 2013 at 1:44 AM

    "I would like to remind you that Stras did not even bother to cover the base defensively. He quit on his team and behaved horribly."So, I was listening on the radio intermittently (helping with kids and working on a final paper for class), so I didn't see this stuff. My buddy I was chatting with was commenting on how blatantly he was sulking and then I read later about how he failed to cover home.Openly dropping your game face and not even attempting to do your job is the equivalent of 10 honest fielding or throwing errors, imo. That's just low class, take-your-ball-and-go-home behavior right there. I guess I haven't seen enough of Stras since he's joined the team, but I'm shocked that he's acting like this.

  89. baseballswami - May 12, 2013 at 1:57 AM

    What happens from here? Zim's throws were looking better until today. We give our pitchers years of rope to ease back after surgery but not the guy who has carried this team for seasons at a time? Fans booing him? Sorry, not going there. LaRoche came around, Zim will, too. As for Stras, maybe the friendly confines of SanDiego will help or maybe a visit with Tony Gwynn. Has he hit bottom yet? Will he acknowledge that he is his own worst enemy? Will he think of his team before himself? And when I said he was pampered I really meant protected and indulged. Remember how the Nats shielded him from reporters? They have let him be a slave to his OCD tendencies. He has got to learn to roll with things. We shall see. Meanwhile we read about Bryce having breakthroughs at age seven. Freak.

  90. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 12, 2013 at 1:58 AM

    another one of my pet peeve. Ee cannot hit bullpens. Cubs bullpen is awful and in 2 games no runs against them.Our hitters are poor late in games.

  91. Eric - May 12, 2013 at 2:10 AM

    "Fans booing him?"Seriously? Man, that's ridiculous."another one of my pet peeve. Ee cannot hit bullpens. Cubs bullpen is awful and in 2 games no runs against them.Our hitters are poor late in games."Yeah, what's up with that? Very strange.

  92. baseballswami - May 12, 2013 at 2:16 AM

    Yes, Eric- our very own Nats fans were booing our very own Ryan Zimmerman. Sad, but true.

  93. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 12, 2013 at 2:23 AM

    They boooo because they care.on't boo you if you just perform to your ability.No brainer.

  94. ehay2k - May 12, 2013 at 2:30 AM

    Harpo, if you disagree with a post/comment, please discuss your position instead of attacking the poster, or making insinuations about who is mentoring whom, etc.

  95. Scott Margenau - May 12, 2013 at 4:52 AM

    I hope SS reads this thread.

  96. Sec. 3, My Sofa - May 12, 2013 at 3:17 PM

    They boooo because they care. on't boo you if you just perform to your ability. No brainer.I'll agree with that last part. The rest is Philly fan behavior; I hope DC doesn't go that way. That kind of entitlement is just low class.

  97. natsfan1a - May 12, 2013 at 3:29 PM

    Haven't read the game thread, or all of the comments here. Did watch the entire game.Agree with concerns voiced about Stras' demeanor/performance but seriously, name-calling and armchair mental diagnostics? Didn't like it back in the day when people anointed him a messiah and don't like it now when they call him names. He was and is human, and a young one at that. [Stuff] happens, and hopefully he'll learn to deal with it when it does.

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