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Game 47: Nats at Giants

May 22, 2013, 6:00 PM EDT

Associated Press
The Nats try to salvage one win at AT&T Park this afternoon.

So, to recap for anyone who hasn't been paying attention over the last 10 days: Bryce Harper nearly decapitated himself crashing into the fence in L.A., Ross Detwiler and Wilson Ramos got hurt in the same (with Ramos landing on the DL and Detwiler forced to miss at least one start), Jayson Werth suffered a setback in his attempted return from the DL, Ryan Mattheus broke his hand punching his locker in San Diego, Rafael Soriano blew two saves and called out Harper for contributing to the second one and Yunesky Maya gave up a 700-foot, walk-off homer to Pablo Sandoval in San Francisco. Good road trip for the Nationals, huh?

You know what would help make that red-eye flight home later tonight a whole lot more enjoyable? A win in today's series finale at AT&T Park. It won't cure all that ails the Nats right now, but it certainly would put everyone in a better mood. So Gio Gonzalez will attempt to put his team in position to earn that win and the lineup will attempt to cobble together more than a couple of runs and the bullpen will hope to attempt to close out a late lead.

Since we've got a game that's actually being played at a respectable hour on the East Coast, I'll be able to share some thoughts along the way right here. And I'll also have an Instant Analysis post as soon as the game ends, so please check back for all that…

WASHINGTON NATIONALS at SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS
Where: AT&T Park
Gametime: 3:45 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500), XM 187
Weather: Sunny, 58 degrees, Wind 15 mph LF to RF

NATIONALS (23-23)
CF Denard Span
RF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman
SS Ian Desmond

Read more »

217 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. Eugene in Oregon - May 22, 2013 at 6:03 PM

    New posted, so to repeat:I'm going to go semi-contrarian here and suggest that Mr. Soriano's 'calling out' (although I'm not sure that's the best characterization of what he said) of Mr. Harper could be just what the team needs — along with some better hitting, of course. I don't pretend to know the psyches of the individuals involved, but if it leads to some frank, inside-the-clubhouse discussions about what's going on, it could prove to be a positive in the long-run. He wrote hopefully (but quite speculatively).

  2. Eugene in Oregon - May 22, 2013 at 6:06 PM

    BTW, I was at the Gio Gonzalez-pitched game in San Francisco last season and the stands were full of Oakland A's fans wearing their 'Gio' jerseys and cheering for the Nats (or at least for Mr. Gonzalez). And the Nats responded by teeing off on the SFG pitching staff — great game.

  3. bowdenball - May 22, 2013 at 6:12 PM

    I like the lineup today. I know everyone hates Espinosa and Moore, but we're facing a very good lefty pitcher today. Those two have a much better chance of hitting him than Bernadina and Lombardozzi. They've all sucked against lefties this year, but at least Espinosa and Moore have hit lefties well at SOME point in their careers. You have to grasp at whatever straws you can find.

  4. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2013 at 6:13 PM

    Eugene, since you're reposting–Eugene, I wish you could be right but suspect there's no way. Passive aggressive stuff is disrepectful, and very fairly raises the "why don't you have the guts to tell me to my face?" response.Even more fundamentally, once you raise the lid on Pandora's Box that way, you've guaranteed a continuing distraction in badgering from the media to keep the "internal dissension" story alive, which is never good.Should have kept it private. As Amanda tweeted, Rizzo's response was "If there's something amiss they should get together and discuss it face-to-face," which is exactly what I said @12:44 (in the Soriano thread).

  5. do1teach1 - May 22, 2013 at 6:15 PM

    Late on last night’s thread, I found several important postings here from well-respected news sources. From San Francisco local media—CBS San Francisco reporting that, when Giants players saw Maya entering game, began pouring champagne on each other in dugout. Post-game report, same source—CBS News San Francisco FLASH: Giants had completely drunk all champagne by the time the walk-off occurred, were in showers when game ended.From the Washington Post, Midnight Edition—Washington-area fans plan "Key to the City" rally for Mike Rizzo, for blowing up a 95-win, playoff team.From the MLB News Desk—Rizzo calling aged Senators star Jim Hannan out of retirement, to provide long-relief and closer work for Nationals."This call-up is just one example of our incredible depth," said Executive-of-the-Millennium Rizzo, adding, "Plus we still have an option on Whitey Ford."Post-game Press Conference—Reporter, thinking about Morse, asks what name Davey would most like to see on a Nats jersey again.Davey replies: "Riggleman."Finally, from NationalsWSorBust.com—Lerner Family Announces Forfeit for Wednesday Game in San Francisco"It's just too painful to watch," said Mark Lerner, speaking in hushed tones after Tuesday night's loss in San Francisco. "It keeps happening. We decided, instead of bearing the inevitable pain of no offense, lots of errors, and choking at the end, to just forfeit, lose 9-0, and catch the early flight home."Asked if this had any precedent in baseball history, Lerner deflected the question, saying, "We might forfeit Friday's home game against the Phillies also, to preserve the chance for a split."A team spokesman said the Nats would not hold pre-game batting practice the rest of the season, as there simply isn't any point. "The team is considering hitting off of a tee before games," he said.

  6. nats guy - May 22, 2013 at 6:16 PM

    Pray for rain

  7. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 6:17 PM

    I am sure that it was a great game. I, too , find myself living in the 2012 season. Unfortunately it's 2013 and reality has set in. The Nats are not the media darlings right now, bounces aren't going their way, people are dinged up, the team is losing a lot and our shiny new veteran closer is acting like a d_____. So it looks like things are going to be the hard way. That being said – I am pulling for these guys almost more than I pulled for them last year. Because things are not going easy, things are hard and humiliating and ugly. I sure can relate to this team a lot because things have never come easy for me, either. I am pulling for them and I hope each and every player on that team digs down and pulls himself up and learns and toughens up. I will be cheering myself hoarse. Someone will emerge as a leader,someone will inspire his teammates, someone will step up. I don't know who it will be yet, but I know they are going to fight this malaise.

  8. bowdenball - May 22, 2013 at 6:21 PM

    I see do1teach1 went to the Robin Williams school of comedy: it's OK to be horribly, painfully, uncomfortably, terribly unfunny … as long as you do deliver volume.

  9. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2013 at 6:23 PM

    Bowdenball — I don't know if I would say I liked the lineup, but it's the best we can put up right now (as Lombo is such a weak hitter from the right side, you may as well keep Danny in for his defense).Ironic thing in all of this is that we would have the same record as the Giants do now with only three more wins. In the last week and a half alone, we had in our hands what should have been those three wins against the Cubs (1-2 on the 12th), the Pads (1-2 on the 18th), and of course last night. On the one hand, it shows how thin the line is between our current angst and a solid, respectable record (not to mention that it would put us all of one game in back of the Barves).On the other hand, the way that we lost every single one of those completely winnable, should-have-won games — great starting pitching betrayed by unprofessionally inopportunistic hitting, erratic relief pitching and flabby defense — shows why we are where we are.

  10. nats guy - May 22, 2013 at 6:24 PM

    Bowdenball,At least he's not a "chicken little". OMG your not being overly positive.

  11. Section 222 - May 22, 2013 at 6:25 PM

    do1teach1 might want to keep in mind a good piece of advice for comedians: Know your audience.

  12. Section 222 - May 22, 2013 at 6:28 PM

    James Wagner has a piece up about Soriano and Harper talking and Soriano trying to make amends. Sounds sincere to me, but I like the guy. How do folks who don't like him feel?

  13. blovy8 - May 22, 2013 at 6:31 PM

    That would be an ok strategy if Bumgarner wasn't actually killing righties this year.

  14. blovy8 - May 22, 2013 at 6:34 PM

    Danny needs to crowd the plate more, never mind hitting; he hasn't been getting hit like usual.

  15. Section 222 - May 22, 2013 at 6:37 PM

    Steady, it's worth noting also that just before they played the Nats like the World Champs they are, the Giants had gone 1-5 and given up 52 runs on a road trip against the Blue Jays and Rockies. There's no doubt that coming home can help a team turn around.

  16. NatsLady - May 22, 2013 at 6:37 PM

    Let me just say, if Soriano called Harper out, it was tactless, but true. Ryan ALSO called Harper out on the radio today about the bunts. Said they were a "bad idea," especially the second one, that Harper should have anticipated that they would walk him (RZ) and use the lefty to get LaRoche. It was gentler, but also factual. Rizzo hadn't heard about the Soriano comment until he was told by the radio guys. He said he would look into it. He also said he had had "a few" discussions with Mattheus.

  17. Knoxville Nat - May 22, 2013 at 6:39 PM

    And I'll remind everyone here who is critical of Lombo's RH hitting that he had an rbi just this past weekend in San Diego against a leftie. When is the last time Espinosa had an rbi against anyone?

  18. Unknown - May 22, 2013 at 6:41 PM

    You had me at hello. You are a true fan.

  19. NatsLady - May 22, 2013 at 6:41 PM

    It may get worse before it gets better, as Atlanta is headed to the Mets and then Toronto. This is a pretty cushy part of their schedule, the Twins are turning out to be as bad as expected and I don't have words to express the way Mattingly and his bullpen threw two games over the weekend.

  20. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 22, 2013 at 6:42 PM

    Rough crowd here today…

  21. NatsLady - May 22, 2013 at 6:42 PM

    But for me, bottom line is, if the Nats come home from the road trip in a hole, then they just have to dig themselves out. And that will be cool to watch.

  22. NatsLady - May 22, 2013 at 6:44 PM

    Won't be able to see any of the game, may get a peek at the score. Boy will I miss those 10 pm starts!!!!! I got home, put stuff away, and got to see the WHOLE game, start to finish. Go GIo. GO NATS!

  23. rmoore446 - May 22, 2013 at 6:45 PM

    Mark is saying on ESPN 980 that Soriano made the four year old son reference in an interview with a Spanish-speaking reporter and not in the statement to the other reporters. Soriano claims he thought he was off the record. And Mark says the two have talked and put the issue behind them.

  24. natsfan1a - May 22, 2013 at 6:46 PM

    I neither like nor dislike the guy. Sounds like somebody told him to make nice, and he did.On a game note – hey, Gio, 'pen, and offense: could we get a curly W today, pretty please? Oh, and defense, too. kthxbai. Section 222 said… James Wagner has a piece up about Soriano and Harper talking and Soriano trying to make amends. Sounds sincere to me, but I like the guy. How do folks who don't like him feel? May 22, 2013 2:28 PM

  25. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2013 at 6:48 PM

    Nats Lady,I don't think anyone here would suggest that Bryce's bunting yesterday represented a good choice. What I think they amount to is an admission that he has no power in his current physical condition. He literally hasn't gotten the ball out of the infield in his last dozen PAs, since the fourth inning of last Thursday's game. If he still feels that way (physically), he should only be playing in a LF with padded walls, if he's playing at all (rather than healing up).

  26. bowdenball - May 22, 2013 at 6:48 PM

    Steady Eddie-I agree that the line is thin, but I don't think the Nats have definitely lost every single winnable, should-have-won games. They're 2-1 in extra inning games and 7-4 in one run games. I don't think we've been unlucky overall. Although there have been a couple blown leads and no come from behind efforts to tie or win. I do think we've been unlucky with starting pitchers we've faced and some other things. The only series I remember all season in which we got to duck the other team's ace was the second series against the Reds, when Cueto was on the DL. Meanwhile the Braves had a three gamer last weekend against the Dodgers and missed both Kershaw and Greinke. When it rains, it pours.

  27. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2013 at 6:53 PM

    bowdenball — I don't disagree, and wasn't saying anything about luck — just that a notch better play in key areas could have put us in pretty decent shape (so all is far from lost, LoD fuhgeddabowdit). But the failure to play that notch better in those key areas says a lot about where the team is at right now.

  28. NatsLady - May 22, 2013 at 6:53 PM

    Eddie, I understand, and I think he's bunting because that's all he can do right now. My point was Ryan said, in public, it wasn't a good idea. So, other than the choice of wording, he did what Soriano did. It's interesting that once in a while you get a glimpse into what athletes are really thinking. Anyway, as RZ said, Harper's a tough kid, he knows he made a mistake. Didn't Soriano put the runner on, in the first place?

  29. phil dunton - May 22, 2013 at 6:53 PM

    The lowly Phillies are now just one game behind the Nationals.

  30. NatsLady - May 22, 2013 at 6:55 PM

    Personally, I would have thought if all Harper can contribute right now is bunts and a little D, he should rest and Perez should have stayed. But that won't happen… hopefully he will be better when he gets home after the off day and in his own outfield.

  31. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 6:55 PM

    If you have played in NY, do you really believe anything is off the record? The thing is, you can say all the right things and make nice but you can't un- say something. The underlying impressions remain. And of course, our fearless leader thinks nothing is a big deal and that everyone just needs to express their talents. Meanwhile a great young reliever like Mattheus had to have been in the depths of despair to do what he did. Our 20 year old gamer is trying to run through walls to help the team. Things like this are symptoms- there is some kind of underlying problem that needs to be addressed. My guess is that Zim, ALR and Desi will eventually decide they have had enough and try to pull everyone together. I keep thinking they have hit bottom, but we may not have seen it yet. Time for fans to show true thick and thin support.

  32. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 6:57 PM

    I think THIS has to be the bottom. It can't get much worse.

  33. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 7:01 PM

    I hope so David– when it comes down to it, these really are some talented guys. It's a good organization. Lots of head scratching here. There are no guarantees. Just ask the Dodgers, Blue Jays, and Angels.

  34. Section 222 - May 22, 2013 at 7:02 PM

    Steady and NL, if you really believe that Bryce bunted because he thinks that's all he can do right now, then surely you don't think he should be in the lineup today do you?He's in a big slump, but he hit a homerun in San Diego in his first game back, and he's still one of the most feared hitters in baseball. Davey needs to find out if he's hurt, and if he isn't, tell him to swing the bat today. You wouldn't be ok with Albert Pujols or Miguel Cabrera bunting in those situations would you? If Espi wants to bunt instead of striking out, I guess I'm ok with that, but not Bryce. No way.

  35. JaneB - May 22, 2013 at 7:06 PM

    I agree that if Bryce was bunting in those situations, it has to be because it was the best choice he saw for himself. That he is hurting and can't hit for power yet. I hope that Soriano really thought he was off the record because SHEESH he should never had said that in public. And the ball doesn't get hit out there if he makes the pitch. No one said that to him or about him. I'm not sure I'll be joining back with the Tuck! Untuck! crowd for a while now.Maybe Sori slipping will help Drew get back his cold blooded pitching edge seeing that even vaunted closers sometimes don't.These guys pulled together last year. Then, people said that Morse was the catalyst for that. So who can step up now and turn this around? Get some cortisone for Zimmie again if he's hurting. Get some surgery for Espi. Give Rendon another chance up here, because he was starting to get into a groove when he turned into a pumpkin. Meanwhile Gio, PLEASE do what you can to keep us in the game today. A curlie W would be so good.

  36. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 7:10 PM

    Bryce is a feared hitter who can hurt you at any time. He is also still a very young person. I hope the adults around him are paying close attention. Stras was closely monitored and handled, maybe Bruce needs just a bit more guidance than he is getting. He doesn't have the requisite experience to be left quite so much on his own. His talent and drive hide his age.

  37. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2013 at 7:17 PM

    222 — the results I outlined — nothing out of the infield in 12 PAs over three games — above kind of speak for themselves as to what he can physically do right now, don't they? As Eric and I have been discussing, the business about Bryce's knee being swollen only came up after last Thursday's game, which is post-dinger. Re the points that Nats Lady raised re the alternative, it was pretty clear (if maybe unfortunate) that Davey wasn't going to use Perez more than he could possibly avoid, as he didn't last September either. (It was actually almost bizarre that he didn't have Perez pinch run for Lombo in last Saturday's 2-1 loss to the Pads after Lombo's single drove in Span with our only run of the game — and then Lombo takes the bat out of RZim's hands by getting thrown out trying to steal.)I would think if Davey won't use Perez and Harper needs to sit, you give Corey Brown a try. Not because he'll be a big star or anything, but he's an actual (not converted) outfielder who can maybe hit, and healthy ones are in awfully short supply for the Nats these days.

  38. blovy8 - May 22, 2013 at 7:17 PM

    Um, you guys have seen the atbats from the other outfielders lately, right? Even Harper bunting seems better than that.

  39. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 7:19 PM

    Think about this– Yuneski Maya, struggling AAA starting pitcher, as a reliever , in the tenth, in a tie game, against Pablo Sandoval, playoff MVP, defending Workd Series champ. So how is that generally going to go? 99 out of a 100? The odds were not good. The veteran closer blew the save.

  40. Dominats Vobiscum - May 22, 2013 at 7:20 PM

    do1teach1? Nah, more like do10laughnone.

  41. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 7:22 PM

    I don't get why we didn't bring in Abad. Especially to face Sandoval. Maya should've been a last resort.

  42. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 7:23 PM

    Do you ever listen to Davey and just go —-HUH?????

  43. Tcostant - May 22, 2013 at 7:23 PM

    What a waste hitting Harper second. No wonder he thought a bunt (or two) was a good move.

  44. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 7:24 PM

    Second should be where your best hitter is hitting. I have absolutely no problem with Harper hitting 2nd. I do have a problem with him bunting twice.

  45. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 7:24 PM

    David– my point. Putting Maya in an unfamiliar role, the day he is called up. No margin for error, almost setting him up to fail.

  46. Tcostant - May 22, 2013 at 7:28 PM

    Best point I saw on one of the earlier boards (and wish I could remember who posted it) was that Davey though both bunts by Harper were a bad move. The poster said Davey should have told Harper that after the first bunt. And he correct. I bet he comes back to the dugout after that first sac and he gets a bunch of high and low fives and nobody says a word like "swing the bat next time".

  47. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 7:28 PM

    Last night, Davey said he told Bryce to pull the ball.

  48. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 7:30 PM

    Bryce is a confident kid, but he has had a tough last month.now lots of piling on from different directions. Hope they don't screw him up.

  49. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 7:33 PM

    Question– if all of Bryce's bad adventures are in right field, why is he playing there? I don't like the way they have shuffled him around. He is obviously not the best choice there and was doing well in center and left. Why is he the sacrificial lamb?

  50. A DC Wonk - May 22, 2013 at 7:33 PM

    David Proctor said… I think THIS has to be the bottom. It can't get much worse.Well, then — let's agree, and then get to the inevitable logical conclusion:Only way to go from here is up, guys!

  51. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 7:36 PM

    Go Nats!! Score some runs and win that first game to get going!

  52. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 7:37 PM

    LOL Gio's interview and shirt.

  53. Section 222 - May 22, 2013 at 7:39 PM

    Tcostant, that was me. And that's what Davey said on the radio this morning. If all Harper can do is bunt, he's not our best hitter. Not our worst either (that would be Espi), but not only shouldn't he be batting second if he can't swing the bat, he shouldn't be in the lineup at all. I imagine Davey used Maya last night with the idea that he might have to go several innings and he would bring in Drew to close if we got the lead. Remember, all he had left was Drew, Abad, and Maya. Duke, Stammen and H-Rod were unavailable. Clip and Soriano had already been used. I think I would have started with Storen and had him go two if possible, even if he had to bat. And hold Maya until everyone else was used since he's the guy who could eat multiple innings if needed. But I can understand where Davey was coming from.

  54. Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me - May 22, 2013 at 7:42 PM

    Turnaround starts right here and right now.Lee Elia said it best about day baseball."EIght-five percent of the people work. The other 15 percent go to day baseball. It's a playground …"See Lee Elia Rant, 1992, for the unabridged version.The Unemployed, Underemployed, Retired and Just Plain Bums, we gather together around the citadel of Bobby C. and F.P…

  55. A DC Wonk - May 22, 2013 at 7:42 PM

    To lighten things up before the game. . . Today's oddities:-Yoenis Cespedes went 1-for-5, and has an on-base percentage below .300 — but that one was a HR in a 1-0 game.- (not odd, just funny, from baseball prospectus): At the start of the season Evan Gattis was not on Evan Gattis's fantasy team. Now he can't afford himself.- Through two games of this three-game series with Boston, eight of Chicago's nine runs have come after two were out and the bases empty.- The Pirates scored five runs in the inning in which McCutcheon made two outs.- Mike Trout struck out his first at bat. And _then_ hit for the cycle.

  56. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 7:45 PM

    Thanks DCWonk!! You know, I feel that this has been a crazy, upside down baseball season in a lot of ways – and not just for us.

  57. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 7:47 PM

    Win or lose Nats Lady owes me a chili bowl. I won't hold you to it though. I got enough heartburn watching this team.

  58. Eric - May 22, 2013 at 7:48 PM

    "Sounds sincere to me, but I like the guy. How do folks who don't like him feel?"Caveat: I like the guy, too.A few thoughts:1) It sounds to me like he was frustrated that, on his watch, Harper didn't do the Harper thing and make the catch or die trying.2) It sounds like he's making excuses by saying he thought he was off the record. But, who cares?3) It sounds like he doesn't actually hold any grudge about it, and it sounds like Harper doesn't hold one against Soriano for his comments.4) I think the media loves this shite and has a huge magnifying glass on it.

  59. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 7:49 PM

    Called MLB network on XM radio. Bowden blames Rizzo. He says if you option Danny down then Davey can't play him.

  60. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 7:51 PM

    Guys calling out teammates. Guys untucking shirts because they did there job. Punching lockers. Silly haircuts. This is a CLOWN TEAM BRO!!!!!

  61. A DC Wonk - May 22, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    Newbie question:On MLB gameday web version, for each pitch it gives: Result MPH Pitch NFWhat's "NF" ?

  62. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    Great way to start the game…letting Bumgarner strike out the side.

  63. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 7:53 PM

    NF is "Nasty Factor." I'm not really sure how it's calculated or anything.

  64. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 7:54 PM

    3 strikeouts to start. Hahaha. OMG. I'm going swimming.

  65. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 7:56 PM

    I'm glad that the struggles of the team are so hilarious to some.

  66. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 7:57 PM

    Maybe the team is showing solidarity with Espi and everyone will strike out their first at bat

  67. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 7:58 PM

    David it's not funny to me. In all honesty it's upsetting. I am just frustrated like everyone else. I would love a win. I think I laugh to keep from crying.

  68. Tcostant - May 22, 2013 at 8:05 PM

    It was a great point 222, one I remembered and agree with.You know Tom Verducci made an excellent point (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/mlb/news/20130521/second-quarter-matt-harvey-miguel-cabrera-interleague-play/?sct=uk_wr_a2) in his article yesterday. It's a good read about the steady decline of offense in MLB. He makes this point, that all these hitters are taking more and more pitches trying to work the pitcher's pitch count. He speaks about giving up good hitters counts like 2-0 and 3-1; but another thing popped in my head after reading.It use to be you work these starters to get to the pen earlier before the 8th/9th guy. The problem is now so many teams have deep pens with guys who throw gas and the guy you get for an inning in the 6th or 7th might be better for that one inning than the starter who you worked the pitch count on.Food for thought.

  69. Nats106 - May 22, 2013 at 8:06 PM

    Nice job by Gio getting out of an early jam.

  70. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 8:08 PM

    Joey Nowak ‏@joeynowak 35sOh dear. Ike Davis just let a ball go by, thinking it was foul. It wasn't, and the Reds just took a 5-4 lead in the ninth. Mercy.At least we're not the Mets?

  71. MicheleS - May 22, 2013 at 8:09 PM

    GYFNG!!! Come on Boys we need a Curly W!!!!

  72. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 22, 2013 at 8:10 PM

    And Matt Harvey gave up 4 runs in 6.1. JZim now 3rd in ERA in the MLB.

  73. Section 222 - May 22, 2013 at 8:16 PM

    Tcostant, it's good food for thought. Some of the late inning relievers like Kimbrell, Chapman, most closers and some 8th inning setup guys when you think about it, are awfully good and certainly not pitchers you look forward to facing. But middle relievers are middle relievers for a reason — they weren't good enough to be starters. So anytime you can force a starter to leave the game before the seventh inning, I think you improve your chances.

  74. Rendon2B - May 22, 2013 at 8:17 PM

    You have now entered the Black Hole (Tyler Moore & Espi). Cue all the rest of the Nats to grab there gloves.

  75. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 8:17 PM

    At least Danny made contact…

  76. A DC Wonk - May 22, 2013 at 8:19 PM

    Yikes — Nats start two guys batting under .160, and neither of them is the pitcher

  77. Ghost Of Steve M. - May 22, 2013 at 8:19 PM

    Contact? Weak contact and an out.

  78. Rendon2B - May 22, 2013 at 8:20 PM

    Espi & Moore should be sent directly to Syracuse. One way flight. Work on your hitting in the minors not in the majors.

  79. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 8:27 PM

    Mark Zuckerman ‏@ZuckermanCSN 1mAcc. to @fangraphs, Espinosa's offensive WAR is -12.6. Only MLB player worse this season: Jeff Keppinger (-16.2).

  80. do1teach1 - May 22, 2013 at 8:28 PM

    Secret wasian man–exactly. Laugh to keep from crying. Perfect.

  81. Rendon2B - May 22, 2013 at 8:30 PM

    Espi is being treated like he was a 10 time all star that is just in a funk. His entire 2-3 career has been one big funk. He must have nude photos of davey and/or Rizzo to have this long of a leash.

  82. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 8:33 PM

    Gio has really improved as a hitter. Last year, he was awful.

  83. Rendon2B - May 22, 2013 at 8:34 PM

    So sad but true right now, our freaking pitchers are better hitters than half the everyday players.

  84. EmDash - May 22, 2013 at 8:35 PM

    No no-hitter today!

  85. A DC Wonk - May 22, 2013 at 8:36 PM

    Isn't this the second time on this trip when our pitcher "broke up the no hitter" ? (or am I thinking of something else?)

  86. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 8:36 PM

    So….a guy who only gets maybe 2 at bats every 5 games knows enough and has skills enough to put a bat barrel on a ball.Go figure.

  87. A DC Wonk - May 22, 2013 at 8:43 PM

    So….a guy who only gets maybe 2 at bats every 5 games knows enough and has skills enough to put a bat barrel on a ball.Ummm, Harper and Zim struck out this game also. It happens. Gio struck out 25 times in 75 AB's last year.

  88. NatsNutSince2005 - May 22, 2013 at 8:44 PM

    In 2011, Riggelman started batting the pitcher eighth and had some success (and Nats fans were thrilled that the team was playing .500 ball). Tony La Rossa sometimes did the same thing. Maybe it's time to put our pitchers in the eight spot for awhile. How much worse could it be?Go Nats!

  89. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 8:45 PM

    That was…adventurous.

  90. Eric - May 22, 2013 at 8:47 PM

    Haha…not sure if y'all saw my post this morning where I said something like, ".500 looks like the crossroads."Well, at the time, I thought about posting a link to Cream's version of the old blues song "Crossroads".Well, 106.7 just played it after LaRoche managed to tag out Posey. I love a little synchronicity like that.

  91. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 8:49 PM

    ALR with the toughest job in baseball.Team can't rely on a 20 year old to lead the power offense…way too much pressure.Needs help…Ryan doing his best..ALR inconsistent…only hope, Werth and Rendon will help alleviate the pressure along with Desmond.

  92. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 8:54 PM

    At least Tyler laid off the breaking ball repeatedly. He had bee flailing at those balls in the dirt.I'm resigned to cheering for these small victories.

  93. Joe Seamhead - May 22, 2013 at 8:54 PM

    I am so sad for Tyler Moore. That was almost a good at bat.

  94. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 8:55 PM

    I think, by law, if your average goes under .100 you have to be returned to the minors

  95. rmoore446 - May 22, 2013 at 8:57 PM

    Bob Carpenter sounded like he was about to fall out of the booth shouting when Moore made solid contact. I'm sad for Tyler too, Joe.

  96. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2013 at 8:58 PM

    Looks like the HP ump has one of those horizontal strike zones going — way outside the zone is a strike but not fully inside the bottom of the zone.

  97. A DC Wonk - May 22, 2013 at 8:58 PM

    I think, by law, if your average goes under .100 you have to be returned to the minors If under .200 is the Mendoza line, or, as JP/Carp like to call it "on the interstate" . . . what is under .100?Sounds like a good group creative activity ;-)

  98. Section 222 - May 22, 2013 at 9:00 PM

    Mark's tweet:To get to 95 wins, #Nats would need to play .621 baseball rest of way (equivalent of a 101-win pace). To get to 90: .578 (94-win pace).Wow, that sounds impossible. Except it isn't. Last year, the Nats were 28-18 at this point in the season, five games better than this season. Then they won 70 of their last 116 games, a .603 winning percentage (a 97 win pace). That includes their lackluster September. In June, July, and August, they were 51-30, for a .630 winning percentage, a 102 win pace. We can do this. And it all starts, RIGHT NOW!

  99. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 9:01 PM

    Better yet if you are not hitting your body temperature you have to be returned to the minors

  100. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2013 at 9:01 PM

    HP ump just did it again with that outside third strike to Pill. At least he's consistent — he gave that exact same pitch to Bumgartner against Desi in the top of this inning.

  101. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 9:01 PM

    the holland tunnelunder/underthe greyhound bus line (to saint elsewhere)

  102. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 9:02 PM

    A section 222'. First we have to win a game.

  103. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 9:03 PM

    MLB Network is still shouting that Zimmerman needs to be in LF and Harper at 3B. I swear…

  104. A DC Wonk - May 22, 2013 at 9:03 PM

    After four innings:Pitches-strikes: Gonzalez 65-43, Bumgarner 67-43.

  105. A DC Wonk - May 22, 2013 at 9:04 PM

    Section 222 said… Mark's tweet: To get to 95 wins…We don't have to get to 95 wins. We just have to get to one more win than the Braves.

  106. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 9:05 PM

    the dry linethe receding batting linethe its your fault line, now get out of the lineup line

  107. phil dunton - May 22, 2013 at 9:06 PM

    Espinosa is pathetic.

  108. A DC Wonk - May 22, 2013 at 9:06 PM

    David Proctor said… MLB Network is still shouting that Zimmerman needs to be in LF and Harper at 3B. I swear…Wow . . . really, that sounds like junior high kids talking who don't know enough about baseball.

  109. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 9:06 PM

    Well it was Harold Reynolds…so not far off.

  110. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 5:11 PM

    Guys- how about we forget sbout the Barves, forget about 95 wins and try to get ONE win? Captain Obvious just mentioned to me that the Nats can't seem to fall out of bed and hit the floor. So bad.

  111. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    the your finished linethe conga hit linethe thin p.u. line

  112. phil dunton - May 22, 2013 at 9:14 PM

    Where is Eckstein hiding today?

  113. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 9:14 PM

    the cant fall out of bed and get a hit line

  114. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 9:14 PM

    Eck isn't "hiding." They clearly showed him in the dugout earlier talking to someone.

  115. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 9:14 PM

    Agree Swami……but before they can win one, they have to score.

  116. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 9:17 PM

    Eck is in a Kayak on McCovey Cove…but he's up the cove without a hitter in the lineup line

  117. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 9:21 PM

    Odd sequence by Bumgarner and the Giants there.

  118. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 9:29 PM

    whew…it beats jim bunting

  119. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2013 at 9:29 PM

    Guess there's our answer on Bryce's knee.

  120. MicheleS - May 22, 2013 at 9:29 PM

    BAM BAM!!! Thank heaven a RUN!!!

  121. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 9:30 PM

    The guy Eck was talking to earlier?…….Bryce Harper.

  122. jeeves - May 22, 2013 at 9:32 PM

    Interesting that Soriano, Zimmerman, and I suppose sundry others are laying this crap on Harper, the main person, by far, who has carried the team, aside from some excellent starting pitching. Eugene, good post and will be interesting to see how your take plays out. Davey is accountable. Oh, wait, Davey is never accountable.And thank you guys (gals, actually mainly gals, who wished me a happy 72th birhday). I played golf on the beautiful Brudenell golf course in P.E.I., Canada and had a hole in one ( my second) on a 170 yd par three. The catch–I was playing alone. Oh well. The wine and scallops were excellent. The ' little woman' is an excellent cook. Bet you loved that comment natsfan and janeb and isn't scnats fan a lady as well. Needless to say I'm posting this after I've drunk my wine.

  123. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 9:37 PM

    How is Zimmerman laying anything on Harper?

  124. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 9:40 PM

    Everytime Desmond unleashes one of those missle throws right at LaRoche, you know Zim is stading there and thinking "How the hell does he do that?".

  125. Nats Fan in Brazil - May 22, 2013 at 9:41 PM

    HAHAHHAHAHHA loved your comment natsjack

  126. do1teach1 - May 22, 2013 at 9:43 PM

    The stage is now set for the inevitable crushing blow. The surly, brooding appearance by Soriano, blaming and mocking his teammates. The routine grounder to Zimmerman to seal the loss. The wistful, despondent Davey press conference.I feel like I had a premonition about getting killed in a car crash today, but I get in my car anyway, and everything is unfolding in reality just as it did in my paranormal vision. But I can't stop driving.

  127. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 9:49 PM

    Jeeves my wife would be awful surprised if I was actually a woman

  128. Section 222 - May 22, 2013 at 9:50 PM

    So is Gio in the on deck circle, or did Davey not learn his lesson last time? d1t1, we had an expression for you back in the day — "buzzkill."

  129. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 9:51 PM

    I was going to tell her SC but I figured it was better coming from you.

  130. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 9:53 PM

    I meant "him".

  131. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 9:58 PM

    Got home just as Harper homered.Looks like his swag might be back.After that double I took out the Maalox from the cupboard.

  132. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 9:59 PM

    cant believe I am pacing the floor while we try to hang on to a 1-0 lead.

  133. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 10:01 PM

    do1teach. get theeee to happy hour. IMMEDIATELY

  134. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:01 PM

    Has Gio looked reasonably sold? 15 pitches an inning is good but not great.

  135. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 10:03 PM

    cmon guys. Need this one to feel good with the Philthies coming in. BTW the only good thing ever come out of PHILLY was an empty bus!!

  136. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 10:03 PM

    Gio has looked really good, MNF.

  137. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 10:03 PM

    Lets get that insurance run

  138. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 10:04 PM

    Insurance Run??? now that's funny

  139. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 10:09 PM

    Gio has been super.Absolutely brilliant after the first inning.

  140. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 10:09 PM

    Didn't we get Span to steal bases in situations just like this?

  141. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:11 PM

    Spa only 5 steals

  142. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 10:13 PM

    Can't see the Nats scoring. They are already at their team max of 5 hits per game.

  143. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 10:13 PM

    Ugh Lopez OWNS ALR.

  144. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 10:14 PM

    Davey hates stealing. Someting about the Bible.

  145. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 10:18 PM

    Quoting the great actor Daniel Stern. "AND THERE YOU HAVE IT" Wonder years

  146. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 10:19 PM

    Just futile. Ughhhhhhhhhh

  147. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 10:20 PM

    Interesting that Gio is going back out. I thought he looked tired last time out.

  148. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 10:20 PM

    Were is Rudy Stein when we need him? He could have leaned into one for us.

  149. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:23 PM

    Knew on the Panda hit there was no doubt on Zim throw.Those he has no issue with.

  150. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 10:25 PM

    Gulp

  151. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:28 PM

    Has this ump not called low strikes all game?

  152. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 10:30 PM

    That walk by Espinosa earlier was his first walk in 72 plate appearances.How sad.

  153. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 10:31 PM

    Hey Drew, Don't let me down, take a bad ball and make it better

  154. Ivan Tuski - May 22, 2013 at 10:32 PM

    remember to through it over the plate, then you can state,that you are better

  155. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 10:32 PM

    Unbelievable.

  156. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 10:32 PM

    naah, naah, naahna,na,na,na na, na,na,nano Drew

  157. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    8th inning and we walk two. This team just gives games away. Just sick right now.

  158. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    Good job, Drew…..take another win out of a starters stats.

  159. Ivan Tuski - May 22, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    Harper! now that's a save

  160. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:34 PM

    What is the deal? In last week thw bull has imploded way too often.THanks Storen for walking tge tie run to second.

  161. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 10:34 PM

    Maybe Storen will break his hand today

  162. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 10:34 PM

    this is a way a good team hits…they get hits with RISP.If we do that, then every darn 8-9th inning pitch wouldn't be so freaking crucial.

  163. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 10:34 PM

    wow just wow. I just don't know what to say anymore. good teams find ways to win. Nats always find ways to lose. THEY STINK..Its just that simple

  164. nats guy - May 22, 2013 at 10:35 PM

    Do u rose colored glasses folks see the light yet? Unbelievable!!!!!

  165. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 10:36 PM

    no, the team don't take games….You can't score 1 and 2 runs and expect to win most of the time…I blame the boys with the bats again.

  166. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:36 PM

    Where the hell was Storen?

  167. Joe Seamhead - May 22, 2013 at 10:36 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  168. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 10:36 PM

    Gio and Drew share this. Walks in late innings are taboo. That's why I'm done with the comic book character that is Henry Rodriguez.

  169. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 10:37 PM

    Not upset anymore about this team. They are just not very good. Getting upset with them is like getting upset that a guy with one leg cant run the 4 minute mile.

  170. Ivan Tuski - May 22, 2013 at 10:37 PM

    jeez, now lets score a couple after this unnecessary escape

  171. Exposremains - May 22, 2013 at 10:37 PM

    How useless has Storen been this year

  172. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 10:38 PM

    they stand around with their bats up their behinds, hoping not to lose, rather than add to their lead

  173. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 10:38 PM

    Don't know if it is his head or elbow but Storen is fooling no one anymore

  174. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:38 PM

    @JeffwxWhat is the difference if you are leading 8-7 or 1-0 when someone coming in? Storen had one job 3 outs before 1 run. He failed.

  175. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 10:38 PM

    When is somebody gonna step up and win a game for us? its just ridiculous. No way we score any runs. its over. Brady Bunch on TV land

  176. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 10:39 PM

    Jeez…our pitchers have to be perfect to win.Give up one freakin run in 8 innings, and we can't score enuf to win.Oh great, here's another .100 hitter.they're playin not to lose rather than playing to win

  177. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 10:40 PM

    Bernadine and Espinosa vs Romo that's a fair fight

  178. Joe Seamhead - May 22, 2013 at 10:40 PM

    What a great two plays in one for ALR!

  179. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 10:40 PM

    Good job Danny. Now you need a lot more of those.

  180. Joe Seamhead - May 22, 2013 at 10:41 PM

    I'm coming Elizabeth! Hit for Danny!

  181. Ivan Tuski - May 22, 2013 at 10:41 PM

    I hate Brady Bunch.Es pa no sa

  182. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:41 PM

    Here is one of the few problem with stats.Storen gives up no runs yet all of who watched would say he was more responsible for that run than Gio who got charged.Btw actual Storen only need 2 outs not 3.

  183. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 10:42 PM

    Here's the difference, odds are you don't win if you score one or two runs…because the other team normally scores more..The team gave up 1 run in 8 innings, that should be enuf to win if you have a major league offense

  184. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 10:42 PM

    WOW!….Danny with a walk and a hit…..2 for 30 on this road trip. He has to be proud.

  185. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:42 PM

    Please call 9-1-1 espi hit and i cant take it any more

  186. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 10:42 PM

    We just can't catch a break

  187. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 10:43 PM

    score more than 1 run and then your staff can give up a run now and then.

  188. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 10:45 PM

    Man…my two favorite non Nat players in all off baseball….Ben Zobrist and Hunter Pence.

  189. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:46 PM

    How good a pitch does it have to be for Tracy to swing. Looked pretty much in the middle.

  190. SCNatsFan - May 22, 2013 at 10:46 PM

    WHY DO WE KEEP THESE PLAYERS?

  191. Secret wasian man - May 22, 2013 at 10:47 PM

    Hurry up and lose and get on the darn plane. Pathetic. pathetic pathetic.

  192. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:47 PM

    Scoring is simple. Just sore more then the opponent. Matters not 1-0, 8-7 or 21-20

  193. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 10:49 PM

    Clippard HAS to throw strikes.

  194. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 10:52 PM

    runs scored in loses last 11 games 2,1,0,1,1,4,0,1Staff ERA must be 2.00 or less to win..that's not happening in 2013

  195. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:54 PM

    Official scorer is a little slow. Doesn't have Storen with a blown save. If they dont consider it a blown save because the run is charged to Gio then the stat loses value to me, as for my purpose he came in and was the pitcher who allowed the the run to score. Sounds like a blown save to me.

  196. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 10:54 PM

    Storen was in the 8th.

  197. Ivan Tuski - May 22, 2013 at 10:55 PM

    Offense needed here

  198. jeffwx - May 22, 2013 at 10:55 PM

    MNF, You can't win if you average 1 run a game andyour oponents average 4….Baseball is simple, you don't play in the deadball era anymore…can't expect to score less than 2 runs and win cause your staff can't expect to hold the opposition to less than 3 runs most of the time.Please start blaming the guys who are getting us here in late innings…the batters who force the staff to be perfect….I guess we will disagree

  199. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 10:56 PM

    Not saying offense is doing the job. Once in the last 3 innings it is what it is, and the pitchers just need to give up no more runs.

  200. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 10:57 PM

    So, let me get this straight. You keep track of "blown save" leaders?

  201. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 11:01 PM

    It is ok to disagree.You think the team that scores the most wins.I think the team gives up the least winsYou are correct more runs would take pressur off pitchers.But as my dad said pitchers start every play thus they are the ones who actually control the play.

  202. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 11:03 PM

    OK Ian. Barrel one up!

  203. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 11:05 PM

    Good job Ian

  204. Ivan Tuski - May 22, 2013 at 11:05 PM

    Take that soriano

  205. Ivan Tuski - May 22, 2013 at 11:07 PM

    We are in desperate need of a Shark Attack

  206. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 11:12 PM

    I dont keep track.i just read for. MLB keeps track.Wonder what are percentage of gettin a run in from third with less than 2 outs.

  207. Manassas Nats' Fan - May 22, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    A 2-1 untuck beats a 13-11 with hitting loss.

  208. Ivan Tuski - May 22, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    had all the way

  209. David Proctor - May 22, 2013 at 11:20 PM

    We NEEDED this win.

  210. Joe Seamhead - May 22, 2013 at 11:22 PM

    Way to go, Nats! Finally.Great game by the Kid!So, for those of you said that Harper wasn't positioned too shallow last night, why was it any different today?

  211. Ivan Tuski - May 22, 2013 at 11:23 PM

    That feels better

  212. NatsJack in Florida - May 22, 2013 at 11:23 PM

    Sweet…..Only problem I have is….Johnny Holiday AND Phil Wood? Worst pairing this side of Tiger Woods and Sergio Garcia.

  213. Ivan Tuski - May 22, 2013 at 11:24 PM

    Did anyone on the team untuck with Soriano?Im in the office and cannot tell.

  214. Steady Eddie - May 22, 2013 at 11:27 PM

    Nice touch – final out was Scutaro which broke his hitting streak.

  215. Cwj - May 22, 2013 at 11:45 PM

    You don't like Phil Wood NatsJack? I think he's pretty good. Basically a walking DC baseball encyclopedia.Plus, whenever Johnny mentions a pitcher's win-loss record Phil is quick to point out how meaningless it is.

  216. baseballswami - May 22, 2013 at 11:51 PM

    Whew- just got out of a rehearsal and checked my phone with great trepidation. Still — the offense. I will check out some DVR – ness in a while. Sounds like Gio was good? Bryce with the long ball– did he make any catches at the wall? Box score very unsatisfying. Will have a better feel after some eye balling.

  217. Sec. 3, My Natural Sofa - May 23, 2013 at 12:18 AM

    Ivan, it did appear that Bryce did not, at least not while they showed him coming in.I did, but it's just not the same.

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