Skip to content

How much more rope for Espinosa?

May 15, 2013, 10:00 AM EST

Associated Press
After going 0-for-4 last night, Danny Espinosa is hitting .175 for the season.

There's no shame in being shut out by Clayton Kershaw, so it's tough to be overly critical of the Nationals after they were overwhelmed by the Dodgers ace last night during a 2-0 loss in Los Angeles.

Truth be told, several members of the Nats lineup put together some really impressive at-bats against Kershaw, from Ryan Zimmerman's 3-hit night to Adam LaRoche and Eury Perez fouling off pitch after pitch from the lefty late, driving up his pitch count to the point manager Don Mattingly had no choice but to pull his starter (at 132 pitches) with two outs in the ninth.

But in the bigger picture, the Nationals still aren't putting together enough quality at-bats on a nightly basis. Zimmerman and LaRoche certainly appear to be coming along after slow starts, Ian Desmond has been solid and Bryce Harper has carried this club offensively through much of the season's first six weeks.

But there are a couple of major holes in the lineup right now, and the biggest of them all is occupied by Danny Espinosa.Read more »

175 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. baseballswami - May 15, 2013 at 10:12 AM

    I want this –Span, Werth, Harper, Zim, ALR, Desi, a hitting Danny, either catcher, pitcher. Have we had that yet ever? With our pitching coming around 4 runs a game would probably suffice. Is this too much to ask????? The Espi thing is talked to death. Davey loves him. Probably end of story. There was much talk last evening that the three young guys in the outfield would be letting balls drop in all over the place out there. I am guessing that did not happen? And what has Tyler Moore done to the baseball gods? He comes up with bases loaded and other risp situations more than anyone else ever. The other hitters would probably fold as much as he does, but it sure does seem that he is cursed with that particular spotlight. Hoping Det pitches with a chip on his shoulder tonight and Greinke looks like a rehabbing pitcher, which he is. Make him spend a lot of pitches- they can't possibly push him too far.

  2. NatsJack in Florida - May 15, 2013 at 10:39 AM

    And down here, reports out of Osceola Co. have the Nats in negotiations for their Spring Training complex at the existing Heritage Park where the Astros train or a new complex across the street.

  3. rmoore446 - May 15, 2013 at 11:07 AM

    Batting Espinosa in the leadoff spot just made his pitiful approach at the plate more difficult to watch. Three strikeouts on 11 pitches!

  4. natsfan1a - May 15, 2013 at 11:17 AM

    Didn't see the game but, looking at the boxscore, seems like Haren may be coming around.

  5. mick - May 15, 2013 at 11:18 AM

    hang em, lol Simply compare him to Desmond, Desi now is a threat to hit, Espi just can not and never will, he is the Tim Cullen of the Nats. I feel for Haren, not impressed with Perez and here is a memo to Nats… no hit ball no win gamewhen will they click, when, when when????

  6. Steady Eddie - May 15, 2013 at 11:29 AM

    Swami — because Haren was dealing big-time, the outfield was never challenged, so it was no test either way. The Sodgers got all of four singles all night, just dinks and doinks.

  7. sjm308 - May 15, 2013 at 11:38 AM

    It seems that with the shoulder injury and the fact that we have people to replace him this should not be that difficult. We are about 25% through the season and that, to me, is a decent sample size. You can keep Rendon down and the kid we got back from Detroit (Kobernus) is having a great season so far, hitting above .350 at AAA and playing both infield and outfield so he could take over for Lombardozi while he plays 2nd. Loyalty is one thing but we look to be in a pennant race and its time to make the move.I made it through the first two innings and will take some blame for not watching longer and keeping it a shutout. Apparently, as soon as I went to bed, Haren had difficulties but man has he done well in his last few starts.OK, new hat for a new streak. Will have last years spring training hat (blue with the little splash of red on the sides)

  8. IKN8wxU2 - May 15, 2013 at 11:59 AM

    Can I ask those of you who criticize Espinosa's "approach" to explain what you mean? Is it failure to recognize which pitches are strikes (that's what I think the biggest issue is, and I fear it's not a matter of approach). Or is it failure to shorten up with two strikes? Or something else?

  9. Gonat - May 15, 2013 at 12:04 PM

    Gonat said… Espinosa's first 3 ABs were 3 strikeouts on 11 total pitches. Eury saw that many pitches in his 1 AB in the 7th inning. May 15, 2013 12:13 AM ______________________________I'm glad I helped Mark write his 5th paragraph and I'm glad Mark devoted some time to this. It's kind of long overdue that a beat writer exposed this issue. I read a comment from early evening that even the MLB Network has picked up on Espinosa's struggles. Espinosa's 2nd and 3rd at-bats where he went down each time striking out in 3 pitches was pathetic. Kershaw is great but going down each time like that when Davey has entrusted him as the lead-off hitter (what was Davey thinking) was just letting down his team and prolonging Kershaw's night.

  10. fast eddie - May 15, 2013 at 12:06 PM

    Not to make excuses for our pathetic hitting, but Kershaw would've beaten anybody last night. He spotted his fast ball/slider and his curve ball disappeared.Re: Espinosa, anyone would be an improvement– Lombo/Rendon/Kobernus. But he's "Davey's guy" and he'll be there till at least July.

  11. Gonat - May 15, 2013 at 12:09 PM

    IKN8wxU2 said… Can I ask those of you who criticize Espinosa's "approach" to explain what you mean? Is it failure to recognize which pitches are strikes (that's what I think the biggest issue is, and I fear it's not a matter of approach). Or is it failure to shorten up with two strikes? Or something else? May 15, 2013 7:59 AM _______________________________Ghost of SteveM has been writing about Espinosa's poor approach for 2 years. I'm sure you can find dozens of his posts on the subject.This year Espi adapted an approach like Desi which was trying to make contact on a quality strike early in the count with a shorter swing. Only problem is it just didn't work and Espi is back to now swinging and missing and is lost at the plate.

  12. Gonat - May 15, 2013 at 12:12 PM

    fast eddie is right. He's Davey's guy. Davey stuck with him through the horrible September and right into the post-season with that awful 1 for 15 in the playoffs. Afterwards we found out he had the shoulder problem but a manager like Bochy would have benched him just based on the deep slump he was in. Davey stuck with his man and paid for it, rather the team did and that's the big distinction, Espi has been hurting the team.

  13. Kiterp - May 15, 2013 at 12:16 PM

    Harper, Span and Werth out of the lineup made Epsi's lack of bat stick out even more. And who would replace him? Nats (ever) get healthy, Epsi’s glove becomes more important than his bat

  14. BigCat - May 15, 2013 at 12:18 PM

    Espi misses pitches by so much it almost as if he's just swinging blindly hoping the pitcher will hit his bat. Has he had his eyes checked?Saw Zims first two AB's last night. Smoked one to right and smoked one to left. Very nice

  15. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 12:18 PM

    Sweet Jesus Thank You for this thread Mark.IMHO, a problem has been guys arrived in spring training knowing they had a job and there was no competition and the roster was set. Some guys got complacent, which is ok; but its like once you get to the majors you have tenure and your performance is ignored now because you are here. Tracy, Shark, Moore and Espi are not players on a championship quality team,at least right now. And while you can make the argument that players respond better when management knows they have their back, each of these guys has been supported and have not produced.Anyone who has read my posts knows I think espi is not a major league hitter and opposing pitchers have figured him out; he looks at strike one (or two) and you can get him with two strikes by throwing a pitch that simply doesn't go to the backstop. I know he's young and again you can argue that he needs management to support him, but for going on 2 years management has had his back and he's regressed. His shoulder woes have nothing to do with his inability to identify pitches or take pitches not remotely close to the strike zone, although when he is eventually DFA'd I'm sure his shoulder will be bought up to lessen the mental damage. He had his chance and he couldn't make it; you hope he goes to AAA and gets some confidence but I don't think that happens, he ends up a Astro where potential is about all they can pin their hopes on right now. We can't we need production, and we have a young man who can do that – Rendon. The time is long past sending this guy down and seeing if, against lesser arms, this guy can get his bat working. We have other options.

  16. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 12:26 PM

    And you know something is up when three beat writers have this story

  17. baseballswami - May 15, 2013 at 12:32 PM

    Yeah, yeah, yeah – Danny. Wake me when something changes. So the more I hear about last night 's game it sounds like Haren was really good! DVR later. We actually had more hits but they scored? Please tell me not on errors? Pitcher's duel with a Cy Young winner- I can swallow that.

  18. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 12:37 PM

    swami we had our chance in the first but blew it. If you have the game DVR'd then I won't say how they got their runs but Haren did pitch very well, made 2 bad pitches – one to Kershaw – and that was the difference.

  19. Whack-a-Mule - May 15, 2013 at 12:37 PM

    Mule, D.V.M. wonders if it isn't the time to proceed with surgery to repair the torn rotator cuff. A structurally and functionally sound left shoulder may not be sufficient to solve all of Espinosa's problems at the plate, but it is undoubtedly necessary. (See also: Adam LaRoche 2011)

  20. 23 - May 15, 2013 at 12:39 PM

    I think they should give him two options: 1) get the surgery and shut it down for the year (like LaRoche did in 2011), or 2) accept a demotion to AAA. Espy has a chance to be a great player, but not if he's playing at less than 100%. I don't think Espy would take too kindly to option 2, so hopefully the team could force his hand a bit and get him to have surgery. Also, what's keeping the team from promoting Rendon or Kobernus to take his spot? Both have been tearing it up in the minors and would give this offense much needed production.

  21. Gonat - May 15, 2013 at 12:44 PM

    SCNatsFan said… And you know something is up when three beat writers have this story May 15, 2013 8:26 AM ________________________________That's kind of pathetic that the pack all moves together. MLB Network ran with their piece on him yesterday and we have had some here that saw he was not a good hitter when he first came up and that his early success was only a matter of the league had not figured him out. Once they did, it's been just about 2 full years of watching a guy be a strikeout machine. Every once in a while he surprises us with a nice AB. Guess what, Gio and Strasburg have better approaches and also can hit a HR.

  22. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 12:50 PM

    23 – who cares how he likes a demotion – he should hate it and work his butt off to get back. We should be in the business of winning ballgames not worrying about sending players to the minors who might be annoyed.

  23. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 12:56 PM

    "The time is long past sending this guy down and seeing if, against lesser arms, this guy can get his bat working. We have other options."In other news, Anthony Rendon had another 3 hits last night to raise his batting average to .356. If you take Espinosa's BA (.175) and multiply it by 2, you still fall short of Rendon's BA at Harrisburg. OBP and SLG comparisons are just as glaring, and just as disparaging to Danny's skills with the bat.Espinosa has been "hitting" at an even worse rate than he was when he went 1 for 15 last September. He is now 1 for his last 17.Rendon should have come north as the Nats starter at 2nd base. Davey said, going into ST, that the 2nd base job was Espinosa's to lose. Well, gee whiz, what has the guy got to do to lose it? Especially when you have had a truly primo bat right on the 25-man roster, all along.I am sorry, but Nats management has made itself look stupid by sticking with that guy, and by keeping a much better man down on the farm.Anyone who reads my comments knows that I have been saying that since ST. And I have dissected both Espinosa's weaknesses with the bat, as well as Rendon's incredible skill with it, right on this blog, multiple times. If I can see such things, so should Davey and Rizzo.I respect both of those guys, but Espinosa's eminently predictable failure, and Rendon's easily predictable success, has made both of them look dumb, or stubborn, or both. Sorry, but as I have said for months, this call is a no-brainer. And TyMo really needs to go back down. He is the guy, not Rendon, who could use some extra reps in the minors. Either send Danny down with the same goal, or make him into a utility super sub if you insist on keeping him on the ML roster. But, for the team's sake, get him out of the starting lineup and redefine his role, or send him down. Both the team and Espinosa deserve something better than to continually embarrass a guy who is clearly not ready for the bigs, and never has been.Danny never really had to win the 2nd base job – it was handed to him – but he sure as heck has lost it.

  24. natsfan1a - May 15, 2013 at 1:06 PM

    Er, I'm pretty sure that Mark can count.Gonat said… Gonat said… Espinosa's first 3 ABs were 3 strikeouts on 11 total pitches. Eury saw that many pitches in his 1 AB in the 7th inning. May 15, 2013 12:13 AM ______________________________ I'm glad I helped Mark write his 5th paragraph and I'm glad Mark devoted some time to this. It's kind of long overdue that a beat writer exposed this issue. I read a comment from early evening that even the MLB Network has picked up on Espinosa's struggles.

  25. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 1:11 PM

    So, out of curiosity, how is everyone gonna feel if Rendon comes up and bats well but fields at like .900 at 2B?>And who would replace him? Nats (ever) get healthy, Epsi’s glove becomes more important than his batI agree.>Pitcher's duel with a Cy Young winner- I can swallow that.Yes, and Haren lost fair and square. Very impressed with his outing. Starting to be really happy that we picked him up.

  26. 23 - May 15, 2013 at 1:19 PM

    Let's say that Rendon doesn't work out in the field. You still have Kobernus playing great at AAA and a solid Lombo (in the field and at the plate). I'd take either of those options over an unhealthy Espi at this point.

  27. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 1:19 PM

    Oh, and it's kind of amazing how Zim has Kershaw completely figured out.

  28. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 1:21 PM

    23 – just forget who it is. Just, hypothetically, how will people feel if Espi is replaced by someone who bats well but fields at .900?The only thing I agree with regarding pulling Espi for a long period of time right now is, if his shoulder needs surgery, do it now.Other than that, I'm happy with Davey's apparently policy of keeping him on a *very* short leash defensively while his bat is quiet.

  29. sjm308 - May 15, 2013 at 1:23 PM

    Here is one thing I do not understand. Both Moore and Espinosa are young, I think both are around 25. This is not a crime to be sent back down for work on improving your skills. I could understand if both were veterans of 5 or 6 years but they are not.I am a huge Espinosa fan but when he came out with the shoulder issues in spring training I had my doubts. I love his defense and we probably could carry a glove guy if everyone else was healthy and hitting but they are not. We have an above ave. replacement with Lombo and what is the message you are sending if Kobernus is having a super year and does not even get a look? It is time to make a move!

  30. The Real Feel Wood. Accept no substitutes. - May 15, 2013 at 1:25 PM

    "That's kind of pathetic that the pack all moves together."Says the guy who's never had a thought that wasn't expressed a million times first by Ghost of Steve M. What's the word for that? Oh yeah. Sycophant.

  31. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 1:26 PM

    sjm I agree; it sends a horrible message that if you produce in the minors you are stuck there despite the guys in the majors putting up less then pedestrian numbers. Moore is a guy who I think returns, plays 6 days a week, gets his stroke back and returns later in the year. Espi… its my feelings once he leaves unless an injury occurs he'll never be back but someone else in MLB will give him a shot.

  32. sjm308 - May 15, 2013 at 1:33 PM

    For the record, I am not in favor of bringing Rendon up now. We have a system, Kobernus should get the next bump up. When Rendon comes up, I want him to stay up for his entire career. My thoughts are that Espinosa either gets the shoulder fixed or his swing fixed and he honestly can't do that against Kershaw, Cain, Wainwright etc. If Lombo is adequate (and I honestly think that is what he is, an adequate major league 2nd baseman – nothing wrong with that by the way), then there is no pressure to make another move. They have played Kobernus this season in more utility roles so he can fill in with exactly what Lombo was doing. I know Davey loves the big bat on the bench but we have NONE right now. At least Perez can also pinch run in the late innings and maybe steal us a run. I just might leave him up here as well.Finally, it is still early but I have never been upset with signing Haren and just kept fairly quiet as many wanted him shipped out. First, they were never going to do that with a 13 million dollar contract and Second, it looks like he will be more than servicable. Mick, anytime you want to go back to your early April posts and cook up that dish of crow, I think you might like the white meat with an nice basil pesto on the side. I just looked at the gameview and out of 17 at bats (9 for us 8 for the dodgers) there were 12 1-2-3 innings. This was a gem of a pitching dual.

  33. Exposremains - May 15, 2013 at 1:39 PM

    Espinosa might not like it but I can't imagine how it helps to keep him failing at the MLB level. Of all people, he's probably the one most upset about his struggles. He's searching, trying different things and trying to performing at the highest level. Thats a bad combination. I think the Nats are doing him a disservice by keeping him in there, it could have bad consequences over the long term.

  34. Joe Seamhead - May 15, 2013 at 1:48 PM

    Fickle Fan that I am, yesterday I said I didn't think Espinosa was going anywhere, now I'm not so sure.Johnson did seem to get peeved in the post game talk with the media when they tried to press him on Danny and Tyler. To Swami, and a couple of others that get testy with us that question those of us that don't like seeing Moore or Lombo in the outfield, I want to say as to last night Johnson had little choice, what with Bryce and Jayson out. That said, this team should not be like pre -2012 when the Nats stuck one washed up journeyman or a neophyte in the starting outfield. This is a organization that is building solid foundations everywhere, and that page should be turned.The outfield shouldn't be an exception for us to expect a level of excellence from the players manning it. I like Lombo , but as an infielder. He's a smart guy and has improved on his ability to track the ball, but he just doesn't possess a ML outfielder's arm. As to Tyler Moore, he may be able to learn to track a ball, but I see Josh Willingham-like instincts, not to mention his arm is pretty suspect, too, from everything we've seen so far. You want to teach him to be an outfielder? Fine, just don't do it during a ML pennant race. Send him down to Syracuse and work with him and let him tune up his hitting while he's there. And no, the other hitters don't "fold as much as he does" as he has struck out in over 43% of his plate appearances. Nobody else has numbers anywhere near to that ratio. He needs to get consistent AB's, but in the minors while he learns to play the OF.There isn't as easy a solution as some seem to think. You get Espy, Moore, and Tracy off the roster you create some major holes in your roster. Great pitcher's duel last night. I thought other then hitting Kershaw in the foot, Haren pitched near flawlessly. GYFNG!!

  35. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 1:50 PM

    There is no shame in returning to the minors even if he doesn't make it back. Danny was a starting 2B in MLB, something so many kids (and adults) aspire to be. Keep your head held high kid. Even Mario Mendoza, he of the infamous line, achieved more than 99.9% of people who played the game.

  36. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 1:50 PM

    "So, out of curiosity, how is everyone gonna feel if Rendon comes up and bats well but fields at like .900 at 2B?"Rendon was named the best glove in the Nats MiL system last year. He played 2nd base in HS, as well as some SS. Espinosa was a SS until the Nats moved him to 2nd.Rendon is not going to play 2nd at a .900 clip any more than Espinosa is going to hit at a .300 clip.Rendon is the guy whom the Nats are preparing to play 2nd base. Kobernus is not in the same league as Rendon with the bat. As far as playing 2nd, the Nats are using Kobernus as an OFer, just as the Tigers did in ST. Kobernus projects as a utility man, at best, in the ML. Rendon will be an All-Star.Now, if Rendon should somehow actually bomb at 2nd, then move him to short and move Desi to 2nd, just as the Nats moved Espinosa to 2nd when Desi landed the starting SS job. Both men are great athletes as well as excellent hitters, and both men have the kind of attitude that they would do everything in their power to help the team win. If anything, Rendon has both better hands and a more accurate throwing arm than Desi, but lacks Desi's range.Teams move IFers around all the time. When did Lombo first play 3rd base, for example, or the OF? It was the Tigers who first tried Kobernus in the OF, and now that is where the Nats are using him in the minors. See? All kinds of ways to skin the cat.You play the guys who give you the best chance to win, and the Nats are simply not doing that.

  37. Pete - May 15, 2013 at 1:56 PM

    Do people really see Lombo as a long-term replacement at 2nd? To me he seems like a great utility guy with a career .245/.310/.330 (essentially Danny's line with a lot less power, but more walks tacked on). Espi's problem has always been pitch recognition, and I do think it'd help to see some AA or AAA pitchers for a bit to straighten that out. However, I would like to see what Kobernus can do. I have no idea about his glove, and Rendon has been playing second for a handful of weeks. No way he's ML ready.

  38. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 1:57 PM

    I shouldn't have mentioned Rendon in that post, Laddie. The point is more, how will people feel if we replace Espi's bat with a mediocre glove.Rendon's fielding percentage in 4 games at 2B is .933. Is that acceptable (I honestly don't *really* know, but it seems low)?

  39. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 1:58 PM

    >I would like to see what Kobernus can do. I have no idea about his gloveKoberunus is at ~.980 at 2B. That's getting closer to Espi level.

  40. Pete - May 15, 2013 at 1:58 PM

    Also would love to send Tyler down too for a bit, don't think keeping him up right now is doing him or the Nats any favors

  41. bowdenball - May 15, 2013 at 1:58 PM

    Laddie Blah Blah said…"Now, if Rendon should somehow actually bomb at 2nd, then move him to short"Thanks. I hadn't laughed like that for days. Can't play second? Just move to short- it's the easiest and least important position on the field!If the Nats decide they want to pull Espinosa from the starting lineup, they need to make sure they have a competent defensive second baseman to take his place. Maybe it's Rendon, but unless there's someone here who attends every Harrisburg home game, none of us are in a position to know one way or another. We have no choice but to trust the organization on this one. They're the only ones who have a real basis to judge whether there are any decent bats in the organization who can also be competent middle infield replacements at the major league level.

  42. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 1:59 PM

    Interesting headling this morning. Has it really taken this long to do this?Like I wrote yesterday, MLB Network wrote about Danny's most recent slump and a .095 pace which of course slid futher after last night.Why does it take a 2 day benching or his birthday to wake him up?

  43. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:00 PM

    "Thanks. I hadn't laughed like that for days. Can't play second? Just move to short- it's the easiest and least important position on the field!"I thought that was odd, too…isn't shortstop more difficult? Need the same range and more of an arm?

  44. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 2:01 PM

    "We have a system, Kobernus should get the next bump up."SJM, you mean, like they brought up Corey Brown last year before giving Harper a shot? If you have been following Syracuse, you would know that the Nats have not even playing Kobernus at 2nd for the past month, but in the OF (left field, mostly), and they brought up Perez, instead of Kobernus, when there was an opening in the OF.Rendon is the best hitter in the entire organization, the best hitter on the 25 man roster, is the best defender in the entire MiL system, and is easily the best option at 2nd base. If the Nats bring up anyone to replace Espinosa, that's who it should be. I can see Kobernus replacing Bernie, or even Lombo, as the utility guy next year, but he is never going to start at 2nd base over Anthony Rendon.

  45. Dominats Vobiscum - May 15, 2013 at 2:09 PM

    "Johnson did seem to get peeved in the post game talk with the media when they tried to press him on Danny and Tyler."Davey is on record as being peeved at media attempts to manage his team. Particularly Kilgore. Davey resents the constant suggestions of lineups, who should be playing where, what's being done with Strasburg/Bryce/Gio, etc etc yada yada yada. Davey is stubborn and probably delays some inevitable decisions just so the guys in the media won't think he did it at their suggestion. If the media would just shut up with all the Espinosa talk for a week or so, he'll probably make a change.

  46. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:09 PM

    Laddie, Kobernus is fielding ~.980 at 2B after well over 100 games. Rendon is at .933 after 4 games at 2B and .937 after 51 games at 3BAssuming he can maintain .930 against MLB hitters, is that acceptable for the infield?

  47. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 2:11 PM

    Laddie Blah Blah said… "The time is long past sending this guy down and seeing if, against lesser arms, this guy can get his bat working. We have other options."Rendon should have come north as the Nats starter at 2nd base. Davey said, going into ST, that the 2nd base job was Espinosa's to lose. Well, gee whiz, what has the guy got to do to lose it? Especially when you have had a truly primo bat right on the 25-man roster, all along.I am sorry, but Nats management has made itself look stupid by sticking with that guy, and by keeping a much better man down on the farmI usually agree with you but Espi had a good Spring and there was no way they would bring up Rendon on Opening Day and lose that extra year of "team control" plus Rendon did need some time to work him at 2nd base (which hasn't happened much).So yes, Espi had a good Spring and "had" means nothing once you can't make it work when it really counts. Espi had been working with the "see it, hit it" approach early in counts which would cut down on strikeouts and allow BABIP to work for him. He did cut down on strikeouts but BABIP wasn't going to work for him with the poor contact he was making. Now, once again, Danny goes back to his old approach of just swinging at anything. As mentioned yesterday, his at-bat with bases loaded on Monday night was how poor he is. His job with 1 out and bases loaded is to get a pitch to drive into the outfield. The reliever Guerra was struggling and Danny takes a 2-0 count with count leverage and drives a ball into the ground that he was lucky wasn't a doubleplay ball but the end result was failure.Last night, as the leadoff hitter was 3 of the worst plate appearances I have seen. 2 at-bats were 3 pitch K's. So yes Laddie, when RZim came off the DL and Rendon was sent back to AA, he should've been playing a lot of 2nd base. Troubling. I don't get it but I haven't understood how Danny has lasted the last year and a 1/2. He had a horrible Spring in 2012 and didn't deserve to be the starting 2nd baseman but the problem has been, who is better than him? Kobernus has no MLB experience. Lombo isn't good enough to be a starter on this team. Rendon is the only player in the system as I see it. Give him a chance.

  48. Kiterp - May 15, 2013 at 2:11 PM

    Were we impressed with Rendon when he was on the 25 last month?

  49. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:15 PM

    I was and wasn't, Kiterp. He had some great at bats, but he seems error prone. How will fielding in the .930s translate to the majors?

  50. slidell2 - May 15, 2013 at 2:16 PM

    One indicator that Rizzo has "gotten tired of looking at him" will be when Rendon begins starting consistently at 2B at Harrisburg/Syracuse.

  51. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 2:16 PM

    "Thanks. I hadn't laughed like that for days. Can't play second? Just move to short- it's the easiest and least important position on the field!"They have played Espinosa at short, as well. Conventional wisdom ain't worth squat in the real world. I guess you missed it, but the Nats have also played Rendon at SS in the minor leagues. "We have no choice but to trust the organization on this one. They're the only ones who have a real basis to judge whether there are any decent bats in the organization who can also be competent middle infield replacements at the major league level."This is the same organization that decided Espinosa is a ML 2nd baseman. Even Nats management must know, by now, that Danny cannot cut it. Maybe even you do. They made a mistake. Its not a matter of trust, that is a matter of fact.If you are so trusting of the judgment of Nats management, perhaps you can explain why they have been playing Rendon at 2nd and SS, as well as at 3rd base, at Harrisburg. Are they serious, or are they just playing Rendon at 2nd and SS for laughs? Do you still trust their judgment, regardless? Do you know what you are talking about, or anything about what they are actually doing with Rendon at Harrisburg?

  52. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:19 PM

    Espi at 2B fields around .990. Kobernus fields around .975. Rendon is unproven (4 games), but is off to a .933 start. And, that's pretty consistent with his reliability at 3B, too.I really don't see Rendon replacing Espi at 2B anytime soon. Kobernus, maybe.

  53. Exposremains - May 15, 2013 at 2:20 PM

    I think Rizzo and DJ are a bit too much in love with their golden 25-man roster that they anointed in February. Teams send guys to triple-A, release trade them all the time.The Bench and the bullpen are never guaranteed to replicate their success. If bench guys were so reliable, they would be starters. Play the hot hand and stop making excuses for everybody.

  54. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:20 PM

    Oh, and yes, Rendon has played SS one time.

  55. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 2:21 PM

    Eric said… Laddie, Kobernus is fielding ~.980 at 2B after well over 100 games. Rendon is at .933 after 4 games at 2B and .937 after 51 games at 3BAssuming he can maintain .930 against MLB hitters, is that acceptable for the infield? May 15, 2013 10:09 AM Your question becomes a riddle of sorts. If you are really serious about 4 game samples, then you probably shouldn't mention it. Worthless. The .937 fielding percentage at 3B you brought up exposes a guy named Ryan Zimmerman. On Monday he was at .899 for his fielding percentage.The conditions you play on at AA and the 1st baseman determine much about any infielders fielding percentage. Rendon's mistakes are generally like Desi's, aggressive plays sometimes after a web gem stop and an errant throw. Rendon will easily cut down on errors just by getting the reps and learning just like Desi did.Rendon will be an above average infielder by his 2nd full year, but yes, there will be growing pains and he will make errors. Every player does.

  56. 23 - May 15, 2013 at 2:21 PM

    Eric, I'm with you on the importance of fielding. I just think that Rendon's hitting ability, no matter the position, will be enough to give the team a boost in WAR. Right now, Danny's at -0.2 WAR, even with his stellar defense. I'd peg Rendon at 2.0 WAR for the rest of the year if he played second or third.

  57. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:22 PM

    I think you guys are so mystified because you're ignoring the defense almost entirely. Espi is heads and tails better at 2B than Rendon and appreciably better than Kobernus. I really think that's the key to why Espi still plays. It's certainly the key to why I like how Davey manages the situation (bench him the moment his D starts to slip).

  58. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 2:23 PM

    "I usually agree with you but Espi had a good Spring and there was no way they would bring up Rendon on Opening Day and lose that extra year of "team control" plus Rendon did need some time to work him at 2nd base (which hasn't happened much)."Good point. I am not all that conversant with the MLB – union contract as it affects the game. Nevertheless, that hurdle has been crossed, and it no longer applies. As we both know, Rendon had a much better ST than Danny, in any case. Davey saw it, too.

  59. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:24 PM

    "Your question becomes a riddle of sorts. If you are really serious about 4 game samples…"Then I wouldn't have included his 51 game sample at 3B…which is VERY comparable to his percentage at 2B. The dude seems error prone to me."The .937 fielding percentage at 3B you brought up exposes a guy named Ryan Zimmerman. On Monday he was at .899 for his fielding percentage."Wait, I though this conversation was about Espi?

  60. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 2:25 PM

    In case you don't read Kilgore “There’s a few guys on the ballclub who are not doing the things they’re capable of doing,” Johnson said. “They’ve been struggling off and on all year and we just need to right the ship. I know it’s been an issue. There’s progress. The middle of my lineup’s doing a lot of good things. But some of the other guys are not doing the things they’re capable of doing.”We can all tell who those "few guys" are.

  61. Doc - May 15, 2013 at 2:26 PM

    Time to make some roster decisions.Sadly, I agree about what is being said here about Espi. Some of his problems got worse when the organization let him talk them into not proceeding with the shoulder operation.

  62. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:26 PM

    I just don't think you throw away .990 fielding for .933. Maybe for .975 and decent hitting, which is Kobernus.But, I really think Espi is still standing on a huge coil of rope at 2B.

  63. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:27 PM

    OK, huge is probably the wrong word.I think Espi still has a coil of rope under him at 2B.

  64. Don - May 15, 2013 at 2:29 PM

    Let's face it – Espi cannot hit. It's not him trying to do too much or pressing or having a bad night or his bum shoulder. He should be in Cuse trying to get his game together, not playing every day in DC, much less ever leading off. Rizzo needs to send him down. Having Danny play everyday in DC, at a woeful level is not helping his confidence, it's not telling the rest of the club that quality performace will be rewarde3d with playing time, and it's not helping the Nats in the standings at all either.

  65. bowdenball - May 15, 2013 at 2:29 PM

    Laddie Blah Blah said…"'Thanks. I hadn't laughed like that for days. Can't play second? Just move to short- it's the easiest and least important position on the field!'They have played Espinosa at short, as well. Conventional wisdom ain't worth squat in the real world. I guess you missed it, but the Nats have also played Rendon at SS in the minor leagues. "I was speaking specifically to your suggestion that if he can't play 2B they could move him to SS. If you can't play 2B, you can't play SS. I don't know if there's ever been a player in baseball history who was moved to short because he couldn't manage 2B defensively.Maybe Rendon can play both. Maybe he can't play either. Maybe he's good enough at 2B but doesn't have the range for SS. All of those are possibilities. What you said- he can move to SS if he can't handle 2B- does not seem like a possibility.

  66. Don - May 15, 2013 at 2:31 PM

    Are you sure that coil of rope is not the snake that his bitten our man Espi?

  67. Harpo - May 15, 2013 at 2:32 PM

    I got finished reading through all the blogs. How crazy is it that all the beat writers on the same day decided to finally write about Espys failures.What gives here. Its to big of a coincidence that they all pounced at once. Is it the old United We Stand, Divided We Fall. Disappointing you all missed the boat last September. To quote the great philosopher Natsjack; ESPY STINKS!

  68. Section 222 - May 15, 2013 at 2:33 PM

    Boy is this a depressing topic, and it sure brings out the best in people. This issue was bound to come up sooner or later if Espi didn't start hitting. We've known from the start of the season, given his injury, that this was a possibility, if not a likelihood. All that stuff about rehabbing his shoulder all winter and it being stronger than ever was suspect from the get go. Personally, I would have advised him to get the surgery right after last year (if not in September when the injury was diagnosed) and be really ready to come back mid season. But he went in another direction and I certainly understand the reluctance to go under the knife. The only question was, as the title of the post puts it, how long would the rope be. I can't believe Davey will put up with these kinds of numbers for the whole year. But whether he gives him till the end of May, or to the All Star break is hard to predict. I don't think the media's sudden interest in the topic is going to make much a difference to him. I'll say this though, I'll be shocked if Espi comes out of this funk without a DL or or MiLB stint. It's just gone on way too long. In the end, the rope's length may be determined by Rizzo and Davey's evaluation of the likely every day replacement. That in my view is Rendon. When he's ready, Danny's rope will come to an end.Now here's a question for Mr Baseball and any other former coach or arm chair hitting experts out there. Is the weak left shoulder worse for his RH or LH batting? Both Zim and ALR were affected by shoulder issues in their throwing arms. ALR's sapped his power in early 2011. That would suggest that LH Espi is going to have trouble. And he sure is. But so is RH Espi. Ugh.

  69. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:36 PM

    >Are you sure that coil of rope is not the snake that his bitten our man Espi? No, that's the uncoiled rope at home plate.I just see a team that made changes to shore up the defense, and I see Espi as a borderline exceptional defender. I do think he's treading on thin ice, hence the benching after two shaky games in the field.But, I still think the most salient point made in this thread so far is that, if everyone else were hitting to their potential, this wouldn't be such a big deal.

  70. Harpo - May 15, 2013 at 2:37 PM

    Eric, you are missing it. Espy could have a 1.000 fielding percentage and it wouldnt matter.I do agree that the only reason he still has a job is because there isn't anyone to step in. Rizzo has given Espy 3 seasons now. The mistake was not having a suitable 2nd baseman ready to go. Anyone with 1/2 a baseball IQ knew Espy wasn't a MLB starter. Sure, a bench player but not a starter.

  71. Harpo - May 15, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  72. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    Don't get me wrong, Harpo, I suspect Kobernus' .975 2B fielding and decent hitting constitute breathing down Espi's neck. I just don't think you cast aside .990 lightly, and I find it surprising so many do.I suspect (hope) Rendon will have to do a lot of work in the field to jump past Kobernus, even if he keeps up his hot streak.

  73. jeffwx - May 15, 2013 at 2:42 PM

    It seems like the worse he does, the more he rewarded. I expect him to bat cleanup tonight.

  74. Harpo - May 15, 2013 at 2:44 PM

    "Is the shoulder tear the primary contributing factor to Espinosa's offensive struggles? We don't know, but it obviously can't be helping matters. And even if it has nothing to do with the slump, the fact remains that As Mark writes, we don't know about the Espinosa has been producing below replacement level for quite some time now."It could be the shoulder then again, its just another excuse as a sore shoulder doesn't cause you to swing at balls above your shoulders.Marks last point is what counts the most "Espinosa has been producing below replacement level for quite some time now."

  75. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:44 PM

    Which is Espi's hurt shoulder? Throwing? If so, then I don't think that's the problem, as his throwing seems quite strong. I agree, Harpo, that it doesn't cause you to swing out of your shoes at balls up at your neck.

  76. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 2:44 PM

    "I think you guys are so mystified because you're ignoring the defense almost entirely. Espi is heads and tails better at 2B than Rendon and appreciably better than Kobernus."Not mystified, just realistic. Sure, Espi is a better fielder than Rendon, or Kobernus, but both of those guys are excellent athletes in their own right. Espi is as good a defender, right now, as he is ever going to be. And he has proven, after 2 1/2 years, how bad he is with the bat. Rendon (it won't be Kobernus, who isn't even playing 2nd base in the minors) is already orders of magnitude batter than Espinosa will ever be with the bat, and Rendon will get even better in the years to come. Rendon will improve his defense at 2nd with greater reps. Comparing his D at 2nd vs. Danny's, now, is not sufficient to be definitive. Not even close. Danny made the transition to 2nd almost seamlessly. You don't know if Rendon will be able to do that, or not. The Nats have been moving him all over the infield at Harrisburg, all season long. If they did not think the guy could play multiple positions, they wouldn't be giving him reps at multiple positions.Now, I haven't seen him play at Harrisburg, but I did see him at 3rd during ST. The guy has excellent hands, quick reflexes, and a strong and accurate arm. He does not need much range to play 3rd, so you would have to see how much range he would bring to 2nd. The footwork around the bag, and the throwing angles at 2nd, compared to 3rd, are probably a bigger problem for him. Danny made the transition from SS to 2nd, so there is no good reason to think that an athlete like Rendon can't make the transition, as well. The Nats need hitting. They've got one hell of a hitter already on the 25-man roster. Play him.

  77. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:47 PM

    jeffwx, despite my support for him due to his defense, him batting first was bizarre indeed."(it won't be Kobernus, who isn't even playing 2nd base in the minors)"Do I have the wrong Kobernus here? Says he's played 274 games at 2B.

  78. Joe Seamhead - May 15, 2013 at 2:49 PM

    Rendon being " error prone" is a result of not playing the field much last year, his first in pro ball, or the year before in his last year of college. He needs reps, and a lot of them. The kid is a good defender, and may end up being a great defender. And he played mostly 3B in college, but was Texas All-State SS in HS. He can play whichever position you play him, but with reps, reps, and more reps. I do fear that if brought up now to play as a starter at either position, you will end up with 2010 Desmond-like fielding stats. As to his ankles being more at risk at 2B, I don't know that peric isn't correct, though I'd feel sure the Nats would've considered that.

  79. Harpo - May 15, 2013 at 2:49 PM

    "Eric said… Don't get me wrong, Harpo, I suspect Kobernus' .975 2B fielding and decent hitting constitute breathing down Espi's neck. I just don't think you cast aside .990 lightly, and I find it surprising so many do.I suspect (hope) Rendon will have to do a lot of work in the field to jump past Kobernus, even if he keeps up his hot streak."Unlike others who speak without ever watching Kobernus, who cares unless you have watched him in person. I don't know his range or ability.One thing that Natsjack knew in Spring Training was that Espy wasn't diving for balls any more because of the shoulder problem. That's a problem right there on Espy's defense. He hasn't dove for a ball this year. He has allowed balls to get through the infield without knocking them down. He only makes plays on balls he can reach by bending to his side. Thats a problem. His defense is no longer elite even if his fielding percentage is high. Fielding percentage is strictly a math formula of non-error plays divided into total chances.

  80. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:51 PM

    Oh, sorry Laddie, did you mean hasn't been playing 2B this year? He has played it 10 times, but he's played elsewhere a lot more.Still, if we're talking imminent changes, he seems far more ready to step in than Rendon (if we're just overlooking Lombo entirely, who, as it turns out, also fields 2B at .990).

  81. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:53 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  82. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 2:55 PM

    "He hasn't dove for a ball this year. "Actually, didn't he dive last night? Also, Span doesn't dive almost as a rule, but he makes *incredible* plays. I'd say Espi has pulled off some ridiculous plays, too, without diving (Desmond as well).Still, the point you make is a fair one. I have no idea if Kobernus is more or less likely than Lombo or Rendon to pull off web gems.

  83. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 2:56 PM

    Do you all remember Bryan LaHair? He was an overnight sensation as a Rookie call-up last year for the Cubs and names as an All Star. It was very premature because he fell apart once the league adjusted to him and the Cubs actually DFA'd him. One year ago an All-Star and now a member of Japanese baseball.This is Espinosa's career. I would've sent him down at the All Star break in 2011. The team hasn't done right by him. He is hurting himself and his team.

  84. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 2:56 PM

    "I was speaking specifically to your suggestion that if he can't play 2B they could move him to SS. If you can't play 2B, you can't play SS. I don't know if there's ever been a player in baseball history who was moved to short because he couldn't manage 2B defensively.Maybe Rendon can play both. Maybe he can't play either. Maybe he's good enough at 2B but doesn't have the range for SS. All of those are possibilities. What you said- he can move to SS if he can't handle 2B- does not seem like a possibility."You are overlooking another possibility. Perhaps their best middle infield would have Desi at 2nd and Rendon at short. Desi's main problem has been the inaccuracy of his throwing arm. Rendon's arm is accurate and just as strong as Desi's. Moving Desi to 2nd gives him a shorter throwing distance to 1st base, which also gives him more time to set his feet before making the throw (Desi's errant throwing is often due to improper footwork).I do not see any reason for the Nats to be playing Rendon at SS other than in contemplation of making that kind of switch with Desi. If they are thinking of making it, it is for deficiencies in Desi's game at SS, rather than in Rendon's at 2nd. Now that Desi seems to have solved his early season throwing problems, the Nats have stopped playing Rendon at SS.Conventional thinking ain't worth squat in the real world.

  85. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 3:00 PM

    "Do I have the wrong Kobernus here? Says he's played 274 games at 2B."He has so impressed the Nats brain trust with his play at 2nd that, after seeing him at 2nd for 274 games, they have moved him to left field.What do you know that they don't?

  86. JamesFan - May 15, 2013 at 3:00 PM

    The Nats cannot afford Espi at second. He ran out of options with me at the end of last year. Any option–Lombo, someone from the minors–is better than continuing this agony. He does not deserve any more "patience." Having him leadoff was foolish and actually cruel.

  87. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 3:01 PM

    I agree Rendon has a great arm…it's his glove that concerns me. Joe, that's a fair point about just needing reps. Maybe he'll ultimately put up .950+ or .970+ fielding stats, but also I agree the MLB isn't the place to work that out.

  88. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 3:02 PM

    I'm happy the media is calling Espinosa out. That may be the only way to get Rizzo to dig his head out of the sand and take action.My hope was that Rendon would go back to AA and get reps at 2nd. Since he went back to Harrisburg he has played 1 game at 2nd.The situation doesn't look like there is anyone to step in at 2nd in the near-term except Lombo and that's not a long-term solution. Good bench player, versatile, but not a starter.Kobernus, no, not the answer. The answer either will come from a trade or from getting Rendon reps at 2nd base.

  89. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 3:02 PM

    "What do you know that they don't?"Nothing. I'd turn that question around on lots of people here, too, though.Honestly, to me, Lombo seems like the most viable immediate replacement if action is going to be taken. He bats better than Espi and has comparable objective fielding stats.

  90. Candide - May 15, 2013 at 3:03 PM

    Eric said… Rendon is at .933 after 4 games at 2B and .937 after 51 games at 3BThree things:1) He's at .963 at third this season, in 19 games. Not fabulous, but perfectly acceptable. And in any case, we're not looking to put him at third just yet.2) Espinosa's fielding percentage is only about .988. That's good, but not great – eight guys are better. He has the third-best range factor in the majors.3) Rendon's .933 at second is based on only four games, 15 chances. He's made only one error, but with only 15 chances, he gets that low fielding percentage. If he hadn't made that error, he'd be at 1.000. You can't look at .933 and claim that's proof of what he'll do in DC, any more than you could claim 1.000 would be proof.My sense is, if he just plays an adequate second in DC, his bat would make him MUCH more valuable overall to the team than Espinosa.

  91. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 3:03 PM

    "I would've sent him down at the All Star break in 2011. The team hasn't done right by him. He is hurting himself and his team."The Yankees sent Mantle back down to Mobile during his rookie year because he was struggling. It's no disgrace, for sure. It helped Mantle, at the time, and he did fairly well after they called him back up.

  92. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 3:04 PM

    Eric, almost all of Rendon's errors have been from over-aggressive throws. Rendon has a + glove. He is sort of the 2010 version of Ian Desmond but won't make as many errors as 2nd base is a much easier position than shortstop.

  93. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 3:05 PM

    One thing for sure, with three beat writers bringing it up Davey will do nothing lest being percieved as having the media force him into making a decision. Danny isn't going anywhere anytime soon except maybe a phantom DL trip for shoulder pain which gets him a rehab assignment, a tactic that is called HRoding in the Nats front office.

  94. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 3:07 PM

    "Eric, almost all of Rendon's errors have been from over-aggressive throws. Rendon has a + glove. He is sort of the 2010 version of Ian Desmond but won't make as many errors as 2nd base is a much easier position than shortstop."My bad…to be fair, I'm mostly basing my impression of the types of errors he made when called up. I believe they were all fielding errors, including one that would've been a borderline Web gem for a tag out at third.

  95. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 3:09 PM

    >My sense is, if he just plays an adequate second in DC, his bat would make him MUCH more valuable overall to the team than Espinosa.I agree with that, I'm just not convinced he'll be adequate in the majors given how his .963 at 3B translated while he was up here.

  96. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 3:12 PM

    "…but also I agree the MLB isn't the place to work that out."It was for Espinosa at 2nd, and that worked out. What hasn't worked out is Espinosa's bat. How many more chances do you think he should get to work out that problem in the majors?"Honestly, to me, Lombo seems like the most viable immediate replacement if action is going to be taken. He bats better than Espi and has comparable objective fielding stats."Lombo is rapidly advancing on the Mendoza Line, himself. Last I looked he was hitting around .212. Better than Danny (.175). but .212 doesn't cut it, either. Not when you've got another guy pounding it at a .350 + clip, with power and a high OBP, already on the 25-man roster.The Nats need Rendon's bat, and they are going to bring him up.

  97. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 3:12 PM

    Laddie, great point. Rizzo has had this all or nothing mentality and it paid off with Ian Desmond but it has failed with Espi and HenRod.It rarely works and if it wasn't for Davey working with Ian in August and September in 2011 I think Ian would've been a failure. He's one of the few that can an opportunity and turned himself from struggling to an All Star player that quickly.Davey has tried his magic with Espi. It's not working.Ian Desmond is the rare case where it worked. You have to know when to hold 'em and when to fold 'em. It's frustrating to have to cut bait with some players and many look at it as a failure. Guess what, baseball is built on a game a failures. You fail 7 out of 10 times in your career as a batter and you are a Hall of Famer.Over 97% of all Minor Leaguers are failures if you consider that only 3% will ever succeed as a Major Leaguer.

  98. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 3:14 PM

    Regarding whether there's any "shame" in being sent down, I agree that from the outside there's not, but I can't imagine it feels good when it happens.That said, that shouldn't have any bearing whatsoever on the decision of whether and when to do it.My final prediction on all of this is that, if anything happens in the near future, Lombo will either start platooning with Espi or will take over starting at first for some period of time.I just don't see Rendon coming up with his fielding numbers being what they are, and it's a good point that Kobernus has been moved away from 2nd, so why would they bring him up just to move him back there?

  99. Section 222 - May 15, 2013 at 3:18 PM

    Espi's bad shoulder is his left shoulder, not his throwing shoulder. No takers on which side of the plate it effects more? Where are the ex-coaches when you need them? Maybe it's equally bad for both?Infielders kind of have to be willing and able to dive because there are situations where blocking a ball is important even when they can't make a play at first on it. And I think Espi has done so when needed. Outfielders not so much. Span makes no bones about not diving. Werth almost never dives. "HRoding". Nice coinage SCNatsFan. Might end up in the glossary sometime soon.

  100. Laddie Blah Blah - May 15, 2013 at 3:18 PM

    "Nothing. I'd turn that question around on lots of people here, too, though."Go ahead.

  101. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 3:19 PM

    "Lombo will either start platooning with Espi or will take over starting at first for some period of time."Der…make that "starting at second for some period of time" ;).

  102. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 3:20 PM

    "Go ahead."Invite's in the mail! I didn't realize we were suddenly being coy ;).

  103. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 3:20 PM

    Candide said…2) Espinosa's fielding percentage is only about .988. That's good, but not great – eight guys are better. He has the third-best range factor in the majors.Espi has great range on pop-ups into the outfield and given how UZR is very subjective, it doesn't differentiate as well on him playing grounders. He had on that fateful Saturday against the Braves in the 1st 3 innings 1 ball he didn't dive for, 1 error, and 1 over-throw that wasn't an error because Suzuki backed up the play and the runner didn't advance.Only 1 of those plays shows up in Espi's fielding % and not sure how the subjectivity of UZR showed the play that got by him.All those plays and mis-plays put the Nats in an early hole and they lost.Many fall in love with Espi because of his great arm at 2nd. He's overkill with that great arm. You almost never need it at 2nd. Lombo's weak arm is all a 2nd baseman needs.Lombo is a former Golden Glove Minor Leaguer at 2nd.

  104. Joe Seamhead - May 15, 2013 at 3:23 PM

    Well, I do have to work a few hours today. I'll leave with letting you all know that I sure am glad that we are in 2nd, one game out of first place, in spite of all of these lousy players and crappy coaches, and a stupid manager and GM. You know?

  105. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 3:25 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  106. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 3:26 PM

    Laddie, in the event that I misread you, and that you were urging me to turn that question on people by name:I haven't been keeping track of everyone who is calling for Espi's immediate replacement, so I'll just say:To anyone calling for Espi's immediate replacement with Rendon, what do you know that Davey, Rizzo, et al, don't?

  107. Candide - May 15, 2013 at 3:30 PM

    Joe Seamhead said……I sure am glad that we are in 2nd, one game out of first place, in spite of all of these lousy players and crappy coaches, and a stupid manager and GM. You know?Skip: What's our record? Larry!Larry: Eight and sixteen.Skip: Eight… and sixteen. How'd we ever win eight?Larry: It's a miracle.

  108. Steady Eddie - May 15, 2013 at 3:30 PM

    Via WaPo Bog, a very cool video of Gio playing catch with a little kid in early practice at Dodger Stadium Monday:http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=913m1XToBBE

  109. peric - May 15, 2013 at 3:35 PM

    A structurally and functionally sound left shoulder may not be sufficient to solve all of Espinosa's problems at the plate, but it is undoubtedly necessary. Yeah, I was worried about this from before ST started. Tend to agree the injury seems the more likely culprit than hitting approach albeit the power is still there. Unlike in LaRoche's case. Although it may be vastly reduced.The problem with getting the surgery is that he would be out until next season. I think that would be enough time for rehab, etc. Also, for Danny to take a step back and realize that when he does come back he will be competing for a job again. Finally Rendon isn't replacing Espinosa? Lombardozzi is period. His back up will likely be Mr. Kobernus who is making a name for himself down in Syracuse. Some of you have noticed Zim's struggles in the field, some believe he has lost his range. Rendon is playing third base whether you like it or not for the same reasons and rationale Mr. Espinosa might have to consider surgery. And last I looked LaRoche's OPS and ISO are still pathetic Mark. Whereas Zim smashed a double off the wall the other night. When's the last time you've seen LaRoche do that? He's done. Zim is moving to first base.Done deal as you'll see soon enough.

  110. bowdenball - May 15, 2013 at 3:35 PM

    Laddie Blah Blah-I'm not overlooking anything. I didn't make any suggestions at all. You said Rendon could maybe play SS if he couldn't handle 2B. I said that doesn't make any sense. That's it. if he's good enough defensively to play SS, he's good enough to play 2B.There are lots of possibilities for the Nats' middle infield of the future. I don't feel qualified to offer an educated opinion on them, given my limited knowledge of the defensive skills of everyone except Espi and Desi. There ARE certain things about which fans can offer educated opinions, like whether a player's major league performance is acceptable or faltering or improving. But the defensive prowess of minor leaguers? Especially at positions where those minor leaguers don't have years of experience and there aren't lots of scouting reports? That's not one of them.

  111. peric - May 15, 2013 at 3:39 PM

    Moe: What's our record? Larry!Larry: Eight and sixteen.Moe: Eight… and sixteen. How'd we ever win eight?Larry: It's a miracle.Curly: It's stupid manager and GM. Moe, curly cheese!Harpo: Honk Honk … Means the players and coaches are lousy.

  112. Section 222 - May 15, 2013 at 3:43 PM

    ALR? The guy who has a 12 game hitting streak? Zim moving to 1B? Really? The first step to climbing out of a hole is to stop digging.

  113. Drew - May 15, 2013 at 3:53 PM

    Harrisburg is playing Richmond this morning. Rendon just homered. Tick tock.P.S. I don't think Kobernus playing outfield reflects dissatisfaction with his infield defense. I think the Nats are picking up on what the Tigers saw. Kobernus' speed and agility could make him valuable in various roles.

  114. Section 222 - May 15, 2013 at 3:58 PM

    Ghost, I agree with you that people fall in love with Espi's arm, and his defense generally, which makes them put on rose colored glasses when assessing his value. Lots of good teams have just adequate defenders at that position. The thing is, unfortunately, Lombo may have an adequate arm for the position, but he isn't much of an upgrade offensively. If Espi's going to be replaced, there needs to be a better option.

  115. Dominats Vobiscum - May 15, 2013 at 4:03 PM

    "Ghost Of Steve M. said… I'm happy the media is calling Espinosa out. That may be the only way to get Rizzo to dig his head out of the sand and take action."Right. Because Rizzo is always so very responsive whenever the media calls something out and tells him what to do. See the Strasburg shutdown, for example.

  116. Don - May 15, 2013 at 4:03 PM

    It just does not matter much at all whether Espi's lousy hitting is caused by his shoulder being bawky. Poor play is poor play, some decent excuse does not make it better. Whether hurt or not, he should not be getting MLB ABs right now.

  117. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    Does something in bold face hold more weight then something written in normal print?

  118. Don - May 15, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    The local media worhsips at Rizzo's alter. They protect their access first and foremost. Seemingly, none of them goes negative unless all of them do.

  119. Pilchard - May 15, 2013 at 4:10 PM

    Agree that it makes it harder to replace Espy when Lombo is struggling. Lombo has had his chances to force the Nats to play him, and he has not done that. (Lombo is 4 for his last 25 with 1 EBH). Rendon may be the long-term answer at 3B, but LaRoche is going to be the Nats regular 1b for the next two years. So, if Lombo and Espi continue to struggle, Rendon will get a shot at 2b this season. The Nats are going all-out to win this year, and if the best line-up is to play Rendon at 2B, he will play 2B.

  120. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 4:11 PM

    "Does something in bold face hold more weight then something written in normal print?"Well, in CSS, you control bolding with an attribute called font-weight. The higher the font-weight, the bolder the text. So, there's that…

  121. Dominats Vobiscum - May 15, 2013 at 4:11 PM

    And as for Rizzo "taking action" and sending Espinosa down, Davey is the one writing Espinosa's name down on the lineup card night after night. Rizzo is not the kind of GM who tells his manager who to play and when. He didn't tell Manny Acta, he didn't tell Riggleman and he sure as hell isn't telling Davey. And that's a good thing, if you ask me. So about the only action Rizzo could take to get Espi out of the lineup would be to trade him. He doesn't appear ready to do that. According to multiple press reports, there has been lots of interest in Espi from other teams, and Rizzo has always turned them down.

  122. Pilchard - May 15, 2013 at 4:16 PM

    I doubt that other teams have as much interest in trading for Espinosa right now given his struggles and admitted injury issues. Not sure many teams will go out of there way to land a 2nd baseman that can't get above the Mendoza line, and may need season-ending shoulder surgery.

  123. Don - May 15, 2013 at 4:23 PM

    Dominats – Rizzo controls the roster, Davey controls the lineup. Espi has options left. If Davey is in control of the roster, then Rizzo's not cut out to be a GM, and I don't think that to be the case.Pichard — maybe if Lombo got 10-12 starts in a row at some point we could see if he can swing it well. A change is long overdue. Espi should play every day in the minors and get things worked-out, and Lombo should get the chance to play everyday at 2B. Maybe neither guy pans out, maybe one/both does, maybe they find another option, but the club needs to find porduction and Danny is not providing any.

  124. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 4:25 PM

    Dominats Vobiscum, I agree with you on Rizzo and the media. It had no impact on the Strasburg shutdown as Rizzo wasn't going to change his mind and he may not change his mind on Danny either. For me, it's been a 2 year frustration. I find Danny to have a sense of entitlement that many athletes have. His ace card in his pocket I still believe is his agent is Scott Boras.Rizzo and Davey collectively have to figure it out.

  125. Candide - May 15, 2013 at 4:28 PM

    SCNatsFan said… Does something in bold face hold more weight then something written in normal print?Yes, it does. Absolutely.

  126. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 4:32 PM

    well played Candide

  127. peric - May 15, 2013 at 4:33 PM

    I'm still wondering how Adam LaRoche making $10,000,000 to Danny's paltry $526,500 can continue to underperform in the heart of the lineup?His OPS and IS are 50 points worse than Espinosa's and Danny has had a power drain this season? PLUS he is actually worse than Mark "always on the DL" DeRosa with Toronto. In less than half the plate appearances DeRosa has produced the same power numbers and is quite a bit older.

  128. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 4:33 PM

    Eric I have no idea what you are talking about… probably a good thing lol

  129. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 4:37 PM

    So, based on your logic peric, if our first baseman had the same production and was paid less then Dnny would be doing worse, right?The two are independent ofeach other. But don't let ALR's May get in the way of your opinion. Funny though, haven't seen you raining about your boy Moore… this years Corey Brown

  130. peric - May 15, 2013 at 4:37 PM

    One indicator that Rizzo has "gotten tired of looking at him" will be when Rendon begins starting consistently at 2B at Harrisburg/Syracuse.If it happens it'll be in Syracuse. Just as when they decided to covert Danny to second base.

  131. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 4:41 PM

    SCNatsFan, CSS is used to apply styles to text, etc, on Web pages. Just being a geek, don't mind me ;).

  132. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 4:42 PM

    Don said… The local media worhsips at Rizzo's alter. They protect their access first and foremost. Seemingly, none of them goes negative unless all of them do. May 15, 2013 12:07 PM Yes, there's safety in numbers. It shouldn't be that way as this is so long overdue but that's just the way it is and most markets react that way. Kasten was notorious for his handling of the media behind the scenes while helping others who shared his views. I've heard Rizzo can be tough if you cross him.

  133. bowdenball - May 15, 2013 at 4:45 PM

    peric said…"I'm still wondering how Adam LaRoche making $10,000,000 to Danny's paltry $526,500 can continue to underperform in the heart of the lineup?His OPS and IS are 50 points worse than Espinosa's"Setting aside the fact that MLB's vet-friendly salary structure has nothing to do with anything, this information is just wrong on its face. Espinosa's 2013 OPS is more than 70 points lower than LaRoche's.

  134. Harpo - May 15, 2013 at 4:47 PM

    I've read thru all the posts and my conclusion is that almost everyone thinks there's a problem with Espy except for Peric and NatsFan1a has no opinion on anything on-the-field baseball related and bold print is the work of the devil.Just keep debating who you will replace Espy with as Kobernus is playing the outfield and Rendon once again is playing 3rd base.

  135. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 4:50 PM

    LaRoche ops .609Espi ops .531If I could put it in bold type I wouldEspi, however, does have more doubles. Long as we are searching.

  136. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 4:50 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  137. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 4:52 PM

    "If I could put it in bold type I would"wrap it the font you want bold in <b> </b>Like this:<b>If I could put it in bold type I would</b>Replace the "b" with "i" in both places and you'll get italics.

  138. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    LaRoche ops .609 Espi ops .531 If that worked now I feel like I am yelling

  139. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    PS – that line didn't come out bold because I encoded the greater-than and less-than symbols. If you copy and paste the line after "Like this:" exactly as it's displayed, it will show up bold when you post it.

  140. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 4:58 PM

    There you go! SCNatsFan!Blogger blocks all the fun things you can do with inline CSS. Oh well.

  141. Harpo - May 15, 2013 at 4:59 PM

    SCNatsFan, that is perfect. Perics favorite TV show is the Simpsons, a madeup cartoon character free of reality out of the same town that Jason Werth comes from. Kind of odd Peric hates Jason Werth and most veteran players.

  142. Harpo - May 15, 2013 at 5:02 PM

    SCNatsFan, you do know that both those OPS figures stink. One stinks real bad. LaRoche has been improving steadily so why does Peric keep kicking the guy.

  143. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 5:04 PM

    Oh I know they both stink but I have faith ALR is on the right track; no doubt he had a brutal April and probably cost us some games. Not in denial about that.

  144. Unknown - May 15, 2013 at 5:07 PM

    If the shoulder is the problem, then the Nationals were stupid for not getting it corrected with surgery when the tear happened last August or September. However, Epinosa has never illustrated that he can hit major league pitching on a consisent basis.

  145. Harpo - May 15, 2013 at 5:07 PM

    SCNatsFan, I agree. LaRoche is playing much better now. Why does Peric keep comparing him. It will take another few weeks at LaRoches current pace to get him to the .700 OPS level. I'm not sure Espy will get close to .700 OPS by the end of the season.

  146. Alex Howard - May 15, 2013 at 5:08 PM

    espinosa is awful, hope the nats go all out on cano

  147. IKN8wxU2 - May 15, 2013 at 5:09 PM

    Ghost of Steve M. wrote:"For me, it's been a 2 year frustration. I find Danny to have a sense of entitlement that many athletes have. His ace card in his pocket I still believe is his agent is Scott Boras."I'm confused by this. Do you think Espinosa's offensive struggles are caused by a sense of entitlement? I've read that Espinosa is one of the most dedicated, hard working players. Moreoever, surely you can't believe Espinosa is not more frustrated by his hitting than all of us Nats fans put together. I'm not trying belittle your comment, so please don't take it that way. I just don't understand what you mean.

  148. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 5:10 PM

    Did I hear FP and Carp correctly that the Dodgers weren't shifting on LaRoche last night? If so, I find that very interesting. I don't think all these singles are a mistake. When the top of our order is all in and healthy, LaRoche and Zim hitting singles could be pretty damaging…which could lead to pitchers not giving them all those outside pitches…which could lead to…power hitting.It smells like a game plan. We'll see.

  149. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 5:12 PM

    IKN8, you're either right about Danny's dedication and frustration, or he's lying.

  150. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 5:16 PM

    IKN8wxU2 said… Ghost of Steve M. wrote:"For me, it's been a 2 year frustration. I find Danny to have a sense of entitlement that many athletes have. His ace card in his pocket I still believe is his agent is Scott Boras."I'm confused by this. Do you think Espinosa's offensive struggles are caused by a sense of entitlement? I've read that Espinosa is one of the most dedicated, hard working players.I've actually written those words myself talking about how there is the group of last guys out of the clubhouse, Werth, Morse, and Espinosa.Entitlement and hard work aren't mutually inclusive. When he got benched for the 2 games you could see him pouting on the bench. He isn't owed anything as this is a results business. Yes he works hard but he isn't turning the hard work into results and no he has to come to the realization that until he embraces and sticks to what Davey has taught him he will never be good as a hitter.

  151. SCNatsFan - May 15, 2013 at 5:16 PM

    Eric I know at times last night they couldn't shift because of men on base, that's when I heard FP bring it up

  152. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 5:18 PM

    Ah, gotcha SC.

  153. Sec. 3, My Sofa - May 15, 2013 at 5:19 PM

    Interesting expression, "enough rope." The whole thing, of course, is "Give him enough rope and let him hang himself."

  154. Harpo - May 15, 2013 at 5:21 PM

    Ghost, hate to tell you, Morse doesnt play for the Nats any more.

  155. Sec. 3, My Sofa - May 15, 2013 at 5:21 PM

    And I seem to recall them shifting on LaRoche in the first game, but I could be thinking of the Cubs, here.

  156. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 15, 2013 at 5:23 PM

    Yes Harpo, I was referring to the past 2 seasons with that grouping of the hard workers. I also recall Davey tell Espi to go home that he was over thinking and needed to relax.

  157. EmDash - May 15, 2013 at 5:24 PM

    I don't think Cano is feasible. The Yankees are very much in contention, and he's vital for that. And after switching his agent, it seems pretty likely that he's planning to stay in New York if at all possible. And even if the Yankees were to be willing to trade him, the hit our farm system would take for even ~2 months of him would be pretty severe. Not worth it long-term.

  158. Mr Baseball - May 15, 2013 at 5:24 PM

    Section 222 To finish our note on Tyler Moore, it started out when someone mentioned him in the OF. If you are going to put him there with Harper, I'm not moving Harp out of LF. I don't like Moore in the OF at all but if you are going to play him with his weak arm he can hit the cut-off man Epsi who has a cannon and let him make the secondary throw. (by the way how many runs did Moore cost us last night in RF?) Harper has a lot of athletic ability but is only 20 years old. And being a catcher most of his life he needs to stay in one position. I don't remember Mantle, Mays and Griffey moving around this much in their early years. I just pray Harp will get to play as many years and they did. Yes, Zimmerman's problem is still in his mechanics! And, I would still make by April lineup move. Especially with AL hot and I could get more in a trade!

  159. Dominats Vobiscum - May 15, 2013 at 5:31 PM

    "Don said… Dominats – Rizzo controls the roster, Davey controls the lineup. Espi has options left. If Davey is in control of the roster, then Rizzo's not cut out to be a GM, and I don't think that to be the case."Rizzo is not going to option a player down who Davey is putting in the lineup every single night. And if Davey wants a certain guy on his bench or in his bullpen, Rizzo is not going to tell him he can't have him. If he tries to move one of those guys without Davey's permission, Davey will loudly tell him that he can just come down and manage the team. The manager and GM jointly set the roster coming out of spring training, but after that it's totally the manager's call on day-to-day changes.

  160. sjm308 - May 15, 2013 at 5:33 PM

    Wow, I go away for a few hours and all the fun starts.Couple of things:Dueces – no one chimed in on the impact of the shoulder on which side is affected more. I did not coach baseball but taught Kinesiology on the University level and it would seem to me that the lead shoulder contributes most of the power when you swing. If Danny's left shoulder is bothering him it might affect him more batting from the right side or at least have an impact on developing more power from that side. Someone early on mentioned that swinging at balls over your shoulders is not a case of injury but of bad judgement. So I hope that answers that question.Laddie – I am sure we are in agreement on lots of stuff and I could not tell you who Kobernus was if he rang my doorbell. I read Nationals Prospects on a regular basis and I saw he was hitting well and being moved around alot in AAA which led me to believe they were getting him ready to move into Lombardozi's spot if Lombo replaced Danny. Sorry if I am not an expert on all things baseball but I will continue to put an opinion in every now and again and you can continue to knock it down. My other point on Kobernus is that he is older and had more experience then Rendon and I think they want Rendon to get more time in the minors. I also have to agree with Peric that Rendon is our 3rd baseman for the future. That doesn't mean he couldn't come up and do the utility thing for a season but I see him at 3rd.Always fun to debate stuff that we honestly have no control over. Davey and Rizzo will figure it out and hopefully in Oct. we will all be excited about what is to come. I do think we all want to see a winner. A very few just want to be proven right.

  161. Mr Baseball - May 15, 2013 at 5:38 PM

    Joe Steamhead – I do care about the team! I have been a Senators, Nationals, Senators and now Nationals fan for many many years. I was probably pulling for them before you were born! I had the priviledge of sitting with Harmon Killebrew (by the LF foul line) when he was a bonus baby in 1954. I was really hurt when they let Griffith take out team, after the 1960 season to Minnesota and gave us an expansion team. Remember the slogan; First in war, First in peace and last in the American League? Well, I lived in that era! In 1960 we could see a good team arriving and the powers to be put us back in the cellar again. Then waiting 33 years for a present team.Hope this answers your question!

  162. Section 222 - May 15, 2013 at 5:39 PM

    Agree to disagree Mr Baseball. I think you're selling Harper short, and playing with fire putting Ty-Mo anywhere but LF if you don't have to.So, thoughts on my question about the side of the plate for which Espi's bad left shoulder is more significant?

  163. natsfan1a - May 15, 2013 at 5:41 PM

    hmmm…there's only one commenter who ever calls me out like that. verry interresting…Harpo said… I've read thru all the posts and my conclusion is that almost everyone thinks there's a problem with Espy except for Peric and NatsFan1a has no opinion on anything on-the-field baseball related and bold print is the work of the devil. Just keep debating who you will replace Espy with as Kobernus is playing the outfield and Rendon once again is playing 3rd base. May 15, 2013 12:47 PM

  164. Section 222 - May 15, 2013 at 5:45 PM

    Thanks sjm, that's what I would think too, knowing how my own shoulder problem ruined my already below average golf game. But then there's ALR and Zim, who were both significantly hampered by shoulder problems in their non-lead shoulder.

  165. Dominats Vobiscum - May 15, 2013 at 5:49 PM

    "Entitlement and hard work aren't mutually inclusive. When he got benched for the 2 games you could see him pouting on the bench."And when Strasburg was shut down you could see him puting on the bench too. Does Scott Boras hold seminars on how to pout at his complex in California?

  166. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 5:51 PM

    The only thing I know about torn rotator cuffs I came across by way of a girl I know who used to play volleyball competitively. She had torn hers and, she said the range of motion problem isn't a pain thing so much as, you try to lift your arm past a certain point and…you just can't. It kinda makes sense if you think about it. I'm sure pain is there, but according to what she said, it sounds like the tear decreases the range of muscle leverage, which in turn restricts range of motion.If that's at all correct, I can imagine a tear in either shoulder would have the ability to significantly reduce hitting effectiveness.

  167. Mr Baseball - May 15, 2013 at 5:56 PM

    In regard to Epsi, he needs to be a choke up hitter and just try and make contact. He's playing in the long ball era and needs to go back to small ball. Ted Williams did this with Eddie Brinkman and he had his best two years (1969-70). He went from an under 200 hitter to the 260's and increased his run production also. We keep wanting to play for the long ball but it does no good when we have no one on base. A few of our hitters would do well using Ted's philosophy (Shark and Lombo, etc) These guys are the likes of Nellie Fox and Richie Ashburn. Anything to help us win and improve their careers.I think Barry Bonds chocked up and look at his results. Forget the steroids, he still had to make contact.Nice talking to you and God Bless!

  168. rogieshan - May 15, 2013 at 6:01 PM

    It's like the Ryan Church debate all over again, with two opposing camps of view. The fact is pitchers have been exploiting the holes in Espinosa's swing since the second half of his rookie season and whatever adjustments or approaches he's made are not paying dividends. But it's hard to imagine Davey giving up on his favorite Iron Man. Batting him leadoff last night is one indication of the manager doing everything he can to jump start a slumping player.

  169. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 6:16 PM

    I agree 100(0)% that we need to add solid small ball to our defensive capabilities. The foundation is there, just need to pursue it more actively.

  170. Eric - May 15, 2013 at 6:17 PM

    "I agree 100(0)% that we need to add solid small ball to our defensive capabilities."Sheesh…offensive capabilities. Wow.

  171. Ivan Tuski - May 15, 2013 at 6:58 PM

    How about Zimmerman to 2nd, Rendon to third?

  172. natsfan1a - May 15, 2013 at 7:09 PM

    As it happens, I've hardly seen any games in the past few weeks given travel, work, and other commitments. Further, as we all know, I don't do armchair GM stuff. But thanks so much for taking the time to look for my posts and to weigh in on my opinions or lack thereof, as represented on NatsInsider. It's very nice to know that somebody cares. I'd worry about leaving you hanging, but given that there are plenty of folks on here who are happy to share all of their opinions on this blog, sometimes at great length, I'm confident that you'll be able to read plenty of them. Off to the gym now, but have an awesome afternoon, and thanks again for caring and sharing. natsfan1a said… hmmm…there's only one commenter who ever calls me out like that. verry interresting… Harpo said… I've read thru all the posts and my conclusion is that almost everyone thinks there's a problem with Espy except for Peric and NatsFan1a has no opinion on anything on-the-field baseball related and bold print is the work of the devil. Just keep debating who you will replace Espy with as Kobernus is playing the outfield and Rendon once again is playing 3rd base. May 15, 2013 12:47 PM May 15, 2013 1:41 PM

  173. sjm308 - May 15, 2013 at 7:20 PM

    Mr. Baseball – so jealous you got to sit with Killebrew! It is the only card (its his rookie 1954 Topps – god were those pretty cards) I have in my collection that is framed along with an autographed picture. Like you I was so excited after so many dismal years and then bang! Off they went to Minn. and from then on its been rough. Can't wait to watch my first World Series Game IN PERSON (would do the bold thing but it would be hypocritical).Natsfan1a – I just got back from the gym, "sticks and stones can break your bones but words can never hurt you" Keep us all smiling here, please.

  174. Joe Seamhead - May 15, 2013 at 11:00 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  175. Joe Seamhead - May 15, 2013 at 11:12 PM

    Mr Baseball said…Joe Steamhead – I do care about the team! I have been a Senators, Nationals, Senators and now Nationals fan for many many years. I was probably pulling for them before you were born! I had the priviledge of sitting with Harmon Killebrew (by the LF foul line) when he was a bonus baby in 1954. I was really hurt when they let Griffith take out team, after the 1960 season to Minnesota and gave us an expansion team. Remember the slogan; First in war, First in peace and last in the American League? Well, I lived in that era! In 1960 we could see a good team arriving and the powers to be put us back in the cellar again. Then waiting 33 years for a present team.Hope this answers your question!May 15, 2013 1:38 PM———————-Not sure why this was directed at me. I neither asked you a question, nor did I question your Nattitude.BTW, though maybe not as old as you, I did grow up going to Griffith Stadium, saw Killebrew play there, and suffered both kidnap pings of our team. Was there when we ended up with the likes of Jim King, Don Lock, Jim Duckworth, etc.

Archives

ON THE RADIO

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

MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.

*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.

Follow us on Twitter