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How much more rope for Espinosa?

May 15, 2013, 10:00 AM EDT

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 »



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