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State of the Nats-6/3

Jun 3, 2013, 4:10 PM EDT

Photo by USA Today
Team Record: 28-29 (11-11)

N.L. East Standings



Offensive Game of the Week: Ryan Zimmerman 5/29 vs. Orioles – 3-for-4, 3 HR, 3 R, 4 RBI
Pitching Line of the Week: Gio Gonzalez 6/1 vs. Braves – 7 IP, ER, 3 H, BB, 7 SO, 105 pitches (72 strikes)

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  1. Nats 128 - Jun 3, 2013 at 4:23 PM

    The Nats could move Gonzalez and Karns up a day and keep them on regular rest and put off the decision on who pitches Saturday as the TBD.

  2. Nats 128 - Jun 3, 2013 at 4:23 PM

    "MrsB loves the Nats said… I could have gone a whole day without hearing the names of Lidge and Stairs…"Or Doug Slaten and Brian Bruney.

  3. sjm308 - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:03 PM

    Hey, Nyjer & Felipe were not mentioned!!(woops)

  4. sjm308 - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:04 PM

    128 – that is exactly what I would do, especially if SS is not going to be shut down.

  5. Nats 128 - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:14 PM

    "sjm308 said… 128 – that is exactly what I would do, especially if SS is not going to be shut down." Thanks! Seems you would want Gio pitching against the Mets and a fill-in against the Twins if it comes down to Stras not being ready.Seems prudent to give Stras extra time off anyways.

  6. Eric - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:27 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  7. Eric - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:28 PM

    Yeah, I think Davey mentioned Stammen might get the ball on Stras' day if Stras' isn't ready and isn't on the DL.

  8. Tcostant - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:29 PM

    Did anyone notice that on ESPN Sports Reporters this weekend, that the Nationals were part of the "parting shoots" at shows end. Mike Lupica said some very unfavorable things.

  9. Nats 128 - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:40 PM

    "Eric said… Yeah, I think Davey mentioned Stammen might get the ball on Stras' day if Stras' isn't ready and isn't on the DL."Natsjack had mentioned that and I think that is a sizeable risk with little upside and substantial downside as Stammen is one of the solid bullpen performers. His job is generally 1 to 3 innings in relief and you would like to use him an inning at a time if you can.He showed the effects of overuse down the stretch last year and into the playoffs.The pickins in the Minors for another starter is slim and Rizzo will have to be creative.

  10. bowdenball - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:45 PM

    Mike Lupica saying unkind things about the Nats is the most positive development of the year so far. Lupica is terrible.

  11. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:50 PM

    Hey now… dont talk about Nyjer… He was my favy Nat for a long time…

  12. blovy8 - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:51 PM

    Yeah, Lupica is paid to troll, essentially. If he doesn't say something objectionable, there'd be no one noticing long enough to object.

  13. Nats 128 - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:52 PM

    I can agree with that bowdenball.

  14. blovy8 - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:53 PM

    What this bullpen could really use is Joey Eischen.

  15. Nats 128 - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:53 PM

    "MrsB loves the Nats said… Hey now… dont talk about Nyjer… He was my favy Nat for a long time…"Not sure I would brag about that. Mine was Tony Plush until I figured out what a phoney he was.

  16. blovy8 - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:54 PM

    To torture Oscar Wilde's quote, the only thing worse than Mike Lupica saying bad things about you, is Mike Lupica saying good things about you.

  17. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:57 PM

    Nyjer made some dumb moves… increasingly dumb… I didnt like Adam Dunn and most Nats fans dont agree with me… but back in those days, there wasnt much to root for…I will never forget that Adam Jones hit and goof by Nyjer…2008 and 2009 I cried at the end of both seasons…

  18. NatsLady - Jun 3, 2013 at 5:59 PM

    No. I don't watch ESPN. I listen to Buster Olney and Keith Law's podcasts, that's about it for ESPN "analysis".Regarding DFAs.(1) Maya was just DFA, cleared waivers and accepted assignment to Syracuse.(2) Brad Lidge did not go quietly. He claimed he was injured and should have been put on the DL, and threatened (or implied a threat of) a grievance. That probably took a week or so after his last appearance (June 16) to resolve.(3) I recall there being some turmoil in the Nats organization in June-July of 2011 which may have delayed Stairs' release. I remember it came pretty quickly after Davey saw a few ABs.(4)You have to balance how quick you are with the DFA with morale on other players, and even more importantly, with your ability to attract free agents and minor-league free agents. No one wants to work for a boss who fires you at the first screw-up. As was pointed out, you have to give Davey and Rizzo a couple of months to see that Duke was not going to be Gorzelanny.

  19. NatsLady - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:01 PM

    MrsB, I liked Nyjer, too, and have the T-shirt to prove it. He seems to wear out his welcome after one season on each team. Live and learn.

  20. Just wonderin' - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:02 PM

    Did Mike Lupica say anything worse than what Nats fans are themselves saying on this and other blogs?

  21. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:04 PM

    Not sure if you folks talked about this… But we seem deep as can be with catcher depth…How do folks feel about Wilson Ramos? Personally, I like Ramos but I am nervous and wondering if he will ever complete a whole season… I really like Zook and hope they re-sign him next year. I do like the catcher duo that we exhibited this season. Seemed to keep both fresh as the 8 hole was killin them.. But Im concerned about Ramos and his durability…

  22. blovy8 - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:04 PM

    I don't think there are a lot of clubs who would put Duke on their 40 man roster. He's not really losing a job.

  23. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:07 PM

    HAHA.. Blovey I was ready to get into seriously with you about your comment at 2:06.. I thought you said there are many clubs who put Duke on their 40… I totally missed the don't…Lord, I keep hoping I get some breaking news thing across my screen….

  24. blovy8 - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:09 PM

    I like Ramos as a hitter, and I guess he rates as an ok defender, but he has a penchant for dropping throws from the outfield and has never been particularly adept at blocking pitches or throwing out runners. Part of that is the staff not holding runners well, but he's the kind of guy with enough potential to get better if his body lets him.

  25. blovy8 - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:11 PM

    Suzuki has a pretty fat option year, I suspect they'd want to re-negotiate if they kept him.

  26. NatsLady - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:12 PM

    Someone suggested Girardi for next year, and I think that would be excellent. Unfortunately, so do the Yankees.Girardhttp://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2013/06/03/the-yankees-want-to-extend-joe-girardis-contract/

  27. Eric - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:15 PM

    "Did Mike Lupica say anything worse than what Nats fans are themselves saying on this and other blogs?"ZING!Nats 128, I agree about the significant downside of using Stammen as a starter, but…yeah, I'm at a loss about other options. But, that's mostly because I know so little about our farm system beyond names that have come up in the infield controversies (3B and 2B).

  28. NatsLady - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:16 PM

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  29. NatsLady - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:19 PM

    Huh? I agree that clubs won't want Duke. So if he's DFA it's retirement or Syracuse. Maybe I should have said he would lose his major-league job. I mean, you never know, it still amazes me Jackson got the contract he got. I guess the scouts only saw his good games–and there were a couple. Maybe his agent put together a nice DVD.

  30. Nats 128 - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:22 PM

    "You have to balance how quick you are with the DFA with morale on other players"The Braves DFAd Francisco last week and have benched numerous players. They dont seem to have a morale problem.This isnt High School. Im sorry. Its not about making buddies. There is a lot of dead wood here.Yes, Henry will be picked up if he is DFAd but I dont believe anyone would give up much in a trade and that still shouldnt stop you from getting rid of him. Let someone else teach him how to pitch.

  31. Nats 128 - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:26 PM

    Eric, I would suggest dropping Ryan Perry from the 40 man and add Ohlendorf. The downside is once you bring up Ohledorf and then dont need him any more he would have to be DFAd as he doesnt have options.Its a calculated risk and you are right there arent many candidates and not many good alternatives. Karns worked well as he has options and you can send him back. Possibly there is another like Karns and I would have to defer to Natsjack, Ghost or Drew.

  32. Eric - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:27 PM

    "The Braves DFAd Francisco last week and have benched numerous players. They dont seem to have a morale problem."Seems to me that exactly describes how much action we've taken. Maya DFAd after one inning, let alone multiple games and it's impossible to call anyone on the active roster a starter in the outfield corners and even 2B. I guarnatee you if Moore were hitting consistently he would start LF regularly while Harper's out and Lombo would be at 2B even more than he is now that he's producing.

  33. blovy8 - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:27 PM

    A lot depends on the timing of when Det can come back too.

  34. Eric - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:30 PM

    True blovy. Would be nice if Det could slot back in at Stras' spot next time it becomes unavoidable and then Stras' could slot back in at Karns' spot when he's ready.But, above all, DON'T RUSH ANYONE BACK! ;)

  35. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:34 PM

    I think some DFA situations are great for morale!! Don't you think some of these things are just a relief? Those players must get very conflicted when they personally like and respect someone but know they are bringing zero to thd team. Right now you cannot tell me that they aren't waiting for something to happen with Espi. Waiting for the other shoe to drop is very stressful. Once it happens you feel like you can move on. It's awful in any career when you just know one person is pulling the others under.

  36. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:36 PM

    And as for former unproductive Nats—- why is DeRosa hitting home runs now???

  37. BigCat - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:38 PM

    Rumors are Ray Knight might be our manager next year.

  38. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:44 PM

    Big Cat- gag, retch. Did any of you see the footage iof former Nat pitcher Ramon Ortiz? Guy is old , hurt his arm and just wept openly. I was at the game at RFK where he threw I think 8 no hit innings, hit a home run and then lost it. Glorious day. Feel bad for the guy. As for Knight- he talks a good game but was not a great manager.

  39. David Proctor - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:47 PM

    I haven't read any rumors saying that.

  40. BigCat - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:47 PM

    Yeah, every time I hear him spewing after a game I think he is selling something. To either bring him in as manager or as hitting coach. Course…..a goat would be better that Eck….aka .175

  41. BigCat - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:50 PM

    Ok Ok….heard a guy calling in on radio, said that Ray Knight is always down huddling with the scouts, getting information on players and that he had sources that swore Knight was gonna be manager. Probably BS. Have to consult with NatsJack to see what he thinks

  42. Eric - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:53 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  43. Eugene in Oregon - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:54 PM

    swami,I did see that (about Ramon Ortiz). Very sad. As for Ray Knight, I know a lot of folks don't like him doing color commentary, but I think his thoughts on hitting (especially what people like to call 'approach') are generally — not always, of course — worthwhile. And I appreciate his honesty in pointing to some of the specific problems both the team and individuals are having. He couches his comments in a polite drawl (most of the time), but at least he's pointing out issues and offering suggestions on how they might be fixed. But I assume that Big Cat's reports of 'rumors' are tongue in cheek. At least I hope so.

  44. Eric - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:55 PM

    I would be stunned to learn that Ray Knight was next in line. If so, hopefully he's more consistent as a coach than he is as a commentator/analyst.I actually thought he had some great insights into pitching and hitting on I think it was Friday night. Often as not, though, he stumbles so much I wonder if he's even sober.

  45. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:58 PM

    I do think Rsy has something to offer when he breaks down hitting. That's about as far as I will go. His Davey man- crush makes me nauseous. FP produces excellent insights into all aspects if the game and he has coached. Don 't think he is a candidate for the job, either.

  46. BigCat - Jun 3, 2013 at 6:59 PM

    I think Manassas NF said he has had some health issues which require medication that slow him up some. But I know what you mean Eric. I to have heard him stammering around and have thought something might be amiss….so to speak

  47. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:00 PM

    Whoever it is– good luck with that. Not looking forward to the transition time.

  48. BigCat - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:02 PM

    Last year Knight had some excellent side video of Bernadina rocking to "load" at the plate. His whole body was swaying backward. He said you can't hit like that. Roger hasn't exactly been tearing it up lately

  49. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:05 PM

    Ray is smart about hitting but way too old school rigid in his thoughts. I think he knows that and I think he knows he has no patience. I believe he has had heart issues, is very heavy, and I cannot see him handling it.

  50. BigCat - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:08 PM

    Is he still married to Nancy Lopez?

  51. phil dunton - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:08 PM

    There are three major problems–a severe lack of offense, lousy relief pitching and a plethora of key injuries. Any one of these problems can ruin a season but the combination of the three is lethal.

  52. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:09 PM

    Let me know when you see or hear of Ray Knight consulting with Rizzo or anybody else in the Nats upper management.He's happy to have the gig he's got.Rizzo is huge on maintaining continuity in the organizational make up of the franchise. Alot will depend how hard a hit his credibility takes on this seasons outcome and how the Lerners handle his contract.If the Lerners want to make a splash and depending who is available they may decide to go outside the organization but my take is they'll stay close to home for continuity and economics.But no…. Not Ray Knight.

  53. David Proctor - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:11 PM

    NatsJack, I've read numerous reports that said the Lerners are leaning towards a "big name" signing. Credible sources too.

  54. phil dunton - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:11 PM

    Randy Knoor will likely be the next manager.

  55. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:11 PM

    I think some of you are looking for a coach with a big name. I still think it will be Knorr. He has raised a lot of these babies. If you watch the dugout, he seems to be the one doing the communicating and coordinating. Start watching. I think Davey makes the big decisions, but Knorr is right there every minute. I love it that he is not the star in the room. He has risen in this organization with regularity. I also like it that we know absolutely nothing about him. Low key.

  56. NatsLady - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:18 PM

    Gorzelanny came off the DL and pitched two scoreless yesterday. Coulda used that.

  57. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:23 PM

    The only "name" out there I'd be interested in and there's no indication he'll be avaiable, is Ron Gardenhire.Girardi woukd be good, too, but I don't see the Yankees dumping him.

  58. SCNatsFan - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:24 PM

    Again, I don't think anyone thought it was absurd to think Duke could take Gorzo's role; in hindsight, sure it was a bad move. I know it would be bad for morale to DFA Henry but no worse then the harm it causes when he comes in and you stand behind him (or in the dugout) and watch the guy implode. Again.

  59. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:28 PM

    I agree Randy Knorr. Joe Girardi if available would be my first choice though.

  60. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:31 PM

    If the Nats DFA Henry it could be a relief and be good for morale. In real life, when one person on your work team consistently drags the group down , that is bad for morale. Getting someone else who holds up his part of things provides a boost.

  61. BigCat - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:32 PM

    Used to watch and follow Knorr down in Woodbridge. Thought he had a good demeanor with the kids. Course, big league ball is a lot different than the Carolina League, but I think you could do a lot worse than him.

  62. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:32 PM

    NatsJack, this Girardi's contract year but I'm sure the Yankees will retain him.

  63. Alphabet Soup Erik - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:39 PM

    I want Kirk Gibson. Pay that man and he will come.

  64. baseballswami - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:45 PM

    BigCat- me, too. It wasn't the majors, but it was a lot of these guys that he has known and coached on the way up. A big plus. I seem to remember them winning the championship also- another plus, no matter what level it is. Knorr is very deeply ingrained in this organization. A lot will depend on whether or not a big name coach is available.

  65. Water23 - Jun 3, 2013 at 7:57 PM

    I was wondering what move Rizzo could make to ignite the Nats for the rest of the season. Many times, a rookie is promoted, a underperforming player is slotted in roster or a trade is made that reignites the fire. Yes, the Nats have a bunch of injuries but who could be the Scutaro? Freese? Torres? It seems that the Nats need something like this. Maybe Werth's return starts the fire, then Ramos, Harper come back combined with ALR annual 2nd half improvement but it does seem something else needs to happen. The only spot that makes sense now is 2b – Kelly Johnson would have been nice but maybe something out of the box will work? 3B – A. Ramirez? Avg & some Power.C – John Buck? Power + experience.SP – Gallardo (expensive) or Bud Norris Ricky Nolasco – Depth at SP is critical.and dare I mention Morse? The Mariners are not going anywhere fast and he is a free agent at the end of the season. It would make things crowded but do we really think Werth, Harper, ALR etc will all stay healthy the rest of the year?The Nats have money to eat a contract right now but in a year or two the Werth deal and the cost of Harper/JZim/Stras will begin to weigh on the roster.

  66. BigCat - Jun 3, 2013 at 8:11 PM

    Obviously they think highly of Randy. I mean, he is the bench coach right?

  67. Knoxville Nat - Jun 3, 2013 at 8:26 PM

    Before the Nats hired Jim Riggleman after his 2009 interim performance it was widely speculated that Don Mattingly was their target to be the manager. As I recall, Mattingly was the bench coach for Joe Torre and the Dodgers refused to give the Nats permission to talk to him or his agent. Now Mattingly is in the last year of his contract in LA and of course has a very poor performing team. I wonder if he would still be on the Nats radar if not extended by StanK and the gang?

  68. Whack-a-Mule - Jun 3, 2013 at 8:33 PM

    Mule Notes:Mules are skeptical about bringing in "big-name" managers. Randy Knorr (current bench coach; the guy closest to Davey J. after "Cat") is the logical successor, having managed at all levels in the Nationals farm system, as well as having been the bullpen coach for the big team.For those pining for a "big name", Bobby Valentine is likely still available.

  69. Knoxville Nat - Jun 3, 2013 at 8:38 PM

    No love here for Valentine.

  70. JaneB - Jun 3, 2013 at 8:53 PM

    We cant let ourselves get below Philly. Oy.

  71. Sec. 3, My Sofa - Jun 3, 2013 at 8:53 PM

    BigCat said…Is [Ray Knight] still married to Nancy Lopez?No, not since about 2009.There's a funny story that happened when they were married, though, or so I've heard.

  72. Eugene in Oregon - Jun 3, 2013 at 8:56 PM

    Mule wrote: "…Bobby Valentine is likely still available."====================…and, following his only season in Boston, will likely still be available for a long, long time to come.

  73. Sec. 3, My Sofa - Jun 3, 2013 at 9:02 PM

    The Mets @ Braves game on July 4 and 5, 1985, went 19 innings, and was finally over at 4 in the morning. Apparently, Nancy had been calling the hotel, expecting Ray to be back after the game … midnight, no Ray. 1 am, 2 am, 3 am!!, FOUR IN THE MORNING and he STILL isn't in the hotel!I can imagine the conversation that ensued."Honey, honest, I was still at the park! The game went 19 innings!""SURE it did! Tell me another!"

  74. Sec. 3, My Sofa - Jun 3, 2013 at 9:06 PM

    So, Bobby Valentine, or Ted Williams' head?

  75. Secret wasian man - Jun 3, 2013 at 9:47 PM

    Fan in cricitical condition after getting punched and falling over the railing. This occurred in BMORE. Just because guy had a Yankee cap on. Guys were caught and in jail. can you believe it hon. Philly south

  76. kc21 - Jun 3, 2013 at 10:24 PM

    I'm hoping by July 1, our lineup looks like this:Werth 9, Rendon 4, Harper 7, Zimm 5, LaRoche 3, Desmond 6, Ramos 2, Span 8.All 5 starters are back: Stras, Gio, Zimmn, Haren, DetRelievers are: Soriano, Storen, Stammen, Clippard, EDavis, Abad, KrolBench is: Bernandina, Suzuki, Lombardozzi, Kobernus, Marrero or OwingsBye bye HRod, Duke, Tracy. Send TMo and Solano back to minors. DL Espinosa.

  77. ehay2k - Jun 3, 2013 at 11:38 PM

    Wait, Mark DeRosa is raking now?I would love to see some journalist talk to ex-Nats and get their frank opinion on the organization. (Of course, only guys that left on good terms.)

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 75 56 --
ATLANTA 68 64 7.5
MIAMI 65 66 10.0
NEW YORK 62 70 13.5
PHILADELPHIA 60 72 15.5
Through Tuesday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
WED: Nats at Phillies, 7:35 p.m.
THU: OFF
FRI: Nats at Mariners, 10:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Mariners, 9:10 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Mariners, 4:10 p.m.
MON: Nats at Dodgers, 8:10 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Dodgers, 10:10 p.m.
Full season schedule

Mark joins Rob Carlin and Joe Orsulak every Thursday at 4 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet for a half-hour show on the Nats, Orioles and rest of MLB. Re-airs Thursdays at 11:30 p.m., Saturdays at 9 a.m. and Sundays at 11:30 a.m.

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.

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