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Game 71: Nats at Phillies

Jun 19, 2013, 7:40 PM EDT

Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

PHILADELPHIA — I hate using the term "must-win" in baseball, especially on June 19. But let's be honest: This is about as close to a "must-win" game as the Nationals have faced all season. They've lost three in a row. They risk getting swept (and passed in the standings) by the Phillies. And they're clearly at a potentially fragile juncture of the season, knowing they not only can't afford to fall any deeper into a hole but that they need to start climbing upward ASAP.

So, it's up to this lineup to finally get something going against Kyle Kendrick, against whom they've had success in the past (he's 4-6 with a 4.90 ERA in 20 career games against the Nationals). Tonight's key, in my mind: The two guys at the top of the lineup. Denard Span is in a major funk right now, hitting .164 with a .220 OBP this month. Anthony Rendon, on the other hand, has been fantastic since his return from the minors, hitting .395 with a .435 OBP. If those two guys can get on base, the opportunities will be there for Ryan Zimmerman, Adam LaRoche, Jayson Werth and Ian Desmond.

Gio Gonzalez gets the start for the Nationals, facing the exact same Phillies lineup that scratched out four runs against Ross Detwiler last night.

Updates to come, so please check back…

WASHINGTON NATIONALS at PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES
Where: Citizens Bank Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500), XM 187
Weather: Clear, 78 degrees, Wind 3 mph LF to RF

NATIONALS (34-36)
CF Denard Span
2B Anthony Rendon
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche

Read more »

554 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. do1teach1 - Jun 19, 2013 at 7:49 PM

    Nationals Announce Events for Season Ticket Holder Appreciation DayWashington DC, June 19 2013 The Washington Nationals announced a variety of special events during their Season Ticket Holder Appreciation Day, planned for July 27th at Nationals Park. Following is a preliminary list of fan-friendly activities for the day:Hitting coach Rick Eckstein will host a seminar on the concourse, where he will debate in favor of the proposition, “A player should watch strikes the entire season, waiting for his perfect pitch.” Arguing the opposing point will be the Entire History of Major League Baseball.The Nats starting pitchers present a short mini-drama, depicting what it is like to get no run support game after game. Pitchers will take turns acting in the role of Custer at Little Big Horn.Team physicians from the Nationals and Redskins, in a festive, joint presentation, will present a clinic on the proper management of injuries to rising superstars who are everyday players.Reliever Ryan Mattheus will counsel area youth on anger management strategies.Equipment manager Dwight Standish will discuss the proper fitting of team uniforms, show-casing the extra-tight collars preferred by Nats batters this season.Reflecting the mood of the 2013 Nationals, team executives will choose a few lucky season ticket holders to unveil the new marketing slogan for the team, printed on the left field fence. The new theme for 2013: “Disconsolate”Fireballing left fielder Steve Lombardozzi will challenge area infants to a weakest-arm contest. (Note to parents: contestants should be at least one day old.)Dozens of beautiful, irreplaceable, European stain-glass windows will be exhibited across the playing field. To ensure the safety of these priceless items, they will only be displayed during the game itself, when the Nationals are batting.Starters Stephen Strasburg and Dan Haren will present a somber reflection entitled, “What it’s like to pitch in a game when 3 of your position players (and all your bench players) have a lower batting average than you do.”Manager Davey Johnson will debate General Mike Rizzo on the value of having left-handed pitchers in the bullpen. The manager, of late, has been telling reporters how much he values lefties in the ‘pen. In the debate, Mr. Rizzo will explain why he gutted the team’s left-handed relief staff, saying at the time that his bullpen’s righties had no trouble getting lefties out. (Media Note: individuals armed with actual statistics on the performance of our righty relievers against lefties will be barred from this event.)Former National Michael Morse will make a cameo experience to explain why everything collapsed.23 formerly retired or washed-up pitchers will discuss how they dominated the Nationals and resurrected their careers for one game. (Note to Media: Chunichi Dragons star Daniel Cabrera is pencilled-in for this discussion at next year’s event.)The day will end with the always-enjoyable “Kids Run the Bases.” To allow the children to run more freely, they will be held on base by the Nationals pitching staff.

  2. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 7:50 PM

    NatsLady, responding to your post in the other thread:"That sounds like the Jayson Werth approach. In fact, he stated he wants to get the starter out of there by the sixth inning and get to a middle reliever.Werth's approach would work with an awful lot of teams, especially poorer teams with chancy bull pens. Also will work with non-Ace type pitchers. Probably not the best approach with Cliff Lee, Kershaw etc. Because that approach means you are at 0-2 or 1-2 a lot, and are subject to their devastating "out" pitch. Also you have expand the zone, foul off pitches etc. and end up with weak ground balls or pop-ups. "I think Werth is good at changing his approach based on who the pitcher is. You see him like to work long counts often, that's true. However, he's not afraid to ambush a first pitch fastball. In fact, three of his seven home runs are on the first pitch. You'll see him swinging a lot more early against guys like Lee than guys like Kendrick.

  3. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 7:53 PM

    No more losses in June.Eat Face

  4. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    Dodgers now have 4 runs so we are back to 14th in rins.However we will be ,9th by tge all star game now thall players will "Eat Face"

  5. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:01 PM

    17-10 for June…. Here we come!!!!!I'm glad to see DJ put a natural OF in the OF and not an IF…. I understand the whole match up but still…Lets go Nats!

  6. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:01 PM

    Our identity is now "eat face."

  7. bowdenball - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:03 PM

    do1teach1…The problem with gallows humor is that it has to be really funny. Otherwise it's just regular old negativity.

  8. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:05 PM

    I predicted no melee today in any of my 4 games.Wring Guzman thrown at by Bumgarner because he admired his homer last niht

  9. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:06 PM

    Feel bad for Kobernus… I'm glad he got his 1st HR but I wish it could have made a difference…

  10. Eric - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:08 PM

    "I predicted no melee today in any of my 4 games.Wring Guzman thrown at by Bumgarner because he admired his homer last niht"That's not a melee, that's a ranged attack! ;)

  11. Tcostant - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:09 PM

    do1teach1 I'm LOL – thanks :)

  12. karlkolchak - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:10 PM

    do1teach1 – epic and funny as heck. You should also add a list of things that have gone RIGHT for the Nats this season:1). The Nats have a perfect 100% record in spelling the team name right on player jerseys.2). No hotdogs have exploded while being shot out of a t-shirt cannon (possibly because they do not use the t-shirt cannons anymore).3). No Nats centerfielder has challenged the opposing fans to a fight.4). The groundskeeping crew has a 100% record of getting the tarp down on the field during rain delays without having it blow all over the stadium.5). No Nats announcer has been fired for unfairly criticizing a Nats pitcher.6). The new stadium, unlike RFK, does not have a rat infestation.7). No Nats outfielder's pre-game ritual includes kicking back with a good jay.8). No career catcher has been asked to play in the outfield.9). The Nats have not lost a game on a walk off balk.10). The Nats manager has NOT once fallen asleep in the dugout.Positives. We must always look for positives.

  13. Section 222 - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:14 PM

    You'll see him swinging a lot more early against guys like Lee than guys like Kendrick.Right. Kind of like he did last night when he hit a homer off Lee on the first pitch.I thought do1teach1's effort easily crossed the threshold of funny enough for gallows humor. I even chuckled out loud a few times.

  14. do1teach1 - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:16 PM

    Thanks karl (loved your list) and tco…we laugh to keep from crying!

  15. JaneB - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:17 PM

    do1 — hilarious. I believed it for a while, too. GYFNG-ESF. Like, seriously.

  16. Eric - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:18 PM

    I laughed at a few myself. These two are my favorite:"The day will end with the always-enjoyable 'Kids Run the Bases.' To allow the children to run more freely, they will be held on base by the Nationals pitching staff."And, a close second:"Reliever Ryan Mattheus will counsel area youth on anger management strategies."

  17. UnkyD - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:20 PM

    DoTeach: lol!! ThanksGYFNG!!!! EAT FACE!!!!

  18. Eric - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:21 PM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  19. Eric - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:22 PM

    -ESF is an excellent suffix, agreed.I have to say, I would LOVE it if the Nats adopted as their slogan some variation of ESF instead of "Platit…" I mean "Natitude."

  20. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:24 PM

    ESF only works if all get engaged in the activity.

  21. Drew - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:24 PM

    Look on the bright side:Nick Johnson hasn't broken any bones.

  22. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:27 PM

    Will ESF sirts be available in the team store or only from an entrepeneuron half street.

  23. do1teach1 - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:30 PM

    Thanks 222, jane, eric and unky…it really struck me this morning that truth really is stranger than fiction. I saw the thing in the Post today, in the column about Storen getting used less, where Davey said, "There was a situation, I like left against left, and I like my lefts right now.” I was just laughing out loud in my kitchen reading it! Do they remember telling us last winter that an all-righty bullpen was no problem?

  24. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:30 PM

    Wait… What's ESF stand for?

  25. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:30 PM

    Do1 – idk if anyone believed that an all right BP was ever gonna work…

  26. Caps Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:31 PM

    overdo1notfunny1, I hope you didn't waste too much company time on that.

  27. Nats 128 - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:32 PM

    More bench clearing. Giants and Padres on Guzman.

  28. Nats 128 - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:33 PM

    ESF? Extra Special Fans

  29. do1teach1 - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:39 PM

    Bowden and Caps Fan–thanks for the feedback. Nats Insider Nation awaits your own, original writing.

  30. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:40 PM

    Eat some face ian has twitter twice today he will eat some face tonight as has Harper tweeted for teammates to ESF

  31. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:41 PM

    Original quote from Jayson had the word somw in it. We dropped it, now team added it back so I did too.

  32. Eric - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:41 PM

    do1, this one is also great:"Equipment manager Dwight Standish will discuss the proper fitting of team uniforms, show-casing the extra-tight collars preferred by Nats batters this season."

  33. Eric - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:43 PM

    ESF = Jayson comment "eat someone's face" and the various permutations that have arisen here since.

  34. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:43 PM

    #ESF sure sounds more civil than Eat Some Face.

  35. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:46 PM

    Hahahahahahahah….. I can't stop laughing…. Eat face just sounds gangsta…. Lol… HahahahahahahahBut I'll go with #ESF

  36. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:47 PM

    If it is a motto that gets them winning I am all for it.

  37. bowdenball - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:51 PM

    do1teach1 said…"Bowden and Caps Fan–thanks for the feedback. Nats Insider Nation awaits your own, original writing."I'm glad other people found it funny- Nats fans can use some laughs these days. But if you don't want feedback on your writing, don't post 14 paragraphs at the start of a baseball game thread. Can't have it both ways.Although I must admit the last one with the variation on "Kids Run the Bases" was pretty darn good :)

  38. Caps Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:52 PM

    overdo1unfunny1, don't dish it out if you can't take it.

  39. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:53 PM

    “I think this will be the biggest blessing in disguise of my life,” Espinosa said on officially being a AAA player.Reading through comments, I think AAA moves to fast for Danny. They should have sent him on a Rehab at A ball like Werth did and allow him to adjust then move him up.Danny can't even handle AAA pitching. I am starting to feel sorry for this guy. He "Golden Sombrero'd" today with 4 K's and his BA dropped to .095 which is Mendoza ÷ 2. The pitcher he faced was ex-Os Jason Berken. Espinosa needs to be facing easier guys to get him back.

  40. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:54 PM

    Chipper Jones is now critiquing Josh Hamilton. The Nats should bring in Chipper as a consultant. LaRoche needs a Chipper tuneup as he needs to start getting those oppo hits again which will help him on those pull hits.

  41. do1teach1 - Jun 19, 2013 at 8:55 PM

    Thanks Bowden. I admit 14 paragraphs was a lot, but with the Nats providing so much material lately, I had to cut it down from 50 paragraphs.And truth be told Caps Fan, I did use a whole day of work on this. Don't tell my boss!

  42. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:00 PM

    They shouted you out on the WaPo baseball blog, do1…

  43. Nats 128 - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:06 PM

    "Espinosa needs to be facing easier guys to get him back."You have to wonder if Danny can hit BP fastballs during batting practice these days without striking out.Espinosas issues falls squarely on Rizzo as thats his bud. Hes covered for him for 2 years now and needs to fix him. I dont hold out much hope as 2 1/2 years never fixed Henry Rodriguez. AAA is littered with players that are poorly placed. How long before they discover that Danny Rosenbaum needs to be a relief pitcher and that Zach Walters might need a position change.

  44. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:09 PM

    The thing is, Danny wasn't broken last year. He didn't hit for high average, but between his defense, power, baserunning ability, etc. he was a valuable player. Maybe not as good as we'd have liked, but good nonetheless. I don't understand how the guy, if as healthy as he says, has fallen this far. I really don't.

  45. do1teach1 - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:11 PM

    Oh great MrsB–I think my boss actually DOES follow the Nats on the Post site! Changing my handle to Unemployed1…

  46. MicheleS - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    GYFNG!!! We need a win, so #ESF!Go GIO! So ready for some home games

  47. JD - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:16 PM

    David, Your comment makes too much sense but you know I have tried to have this discussion with some folks here and in the end they just get pissy so I am not hopeful that common sense will prevail. Just to illustrate your point last year Espi was 3rd in the NL for 2nd baseman by WAR which is a reasonable overall measure of a player behind only Aaron Hill and Brandon Phillips.

  48. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:17 PM

    Danny had a solid 2nd half of last year… I always thought he should have just got the surgeries to fix everything and then work his way back…Ultimately, I think he will be our 2nd basemen and Rendon will go back to 3rd… Zimm will probably go to 1st and Adam gone…Just my few cents…

  49. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:19 PM

    Davey today:“I think guys look at sequences — in, out, in and out — and then they start guessing, instead of going up there and looking for something hard,” he said. “I think with all this high-tech stuff, videos and all that stuff, I’ve got guys — regulars even — during the game going in to look at the video, you know? I think it’s way too much. I mean, you shouldn’t even have to look at the video during the game. You can’t think about too much. You just need to keep it simple boys. Go hacking.”Guys are going to look at video DURING THE GAME? No wonder they're overwhelmed. Everyone needs to calm down and the hits will come. They're trying to do too much.

  50. JD - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:27 PM

    Mrs. B, I am not so sure I agree. I am really liking the advantage of having a great hitting 2nd baseman gives us and I think Rendon will be great. I am also not sold on the idea of Zim moving to 1st any time soon. As far as Espi goes in addition to all the injury talk there is no denying that pitchers have figured out his uber aggressive hitting style and are using it against him by striking him out on junk, What's alarming and may be physical is the fact that he's also missing fastballs in the zone that he used to crush. He is not bad enough where he should be striking out every at bat in AAA. no way.

  51. Rabbit34 - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:30 PM

    Oh, what a miserable lineup we have.

  52. Nats 128 - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:30 PM

    189 Ks and freesing in key spots. 1 for 15 in the postseason. Thats not good even tho his July – August stats were good.

  53. JD - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:32 PM

    welcome aboard Eyeore AKA Rabbit34.

  54. Alphabet Soup Erik - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:33 PM

    Good stuff do1teach1…I probably won't laugh this hard again for at least 2 more hours when the Nationals try to hit a baseball.

  55. JD - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:38 PM

    189 K's is not good but that is just one stat. .247 .315 .402 is very good when compared to other 2nd basemen.17 Hr's 82 runs scored and 56 RBI's is also not too shabby when compared to other 2nd basemen. 20 stolen bases and sublime defense at 2 middle infield positions is also nothing to scoff at. 2013 is an entirely different story. Danny's performance this year is below replacement level but let's not rewrite history here.

  56. Rabbit34 - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:40 PM

    do1teach1….SO funny….and sadly SO true. Now, let's EAT FACE!

  57. Candide - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:55 PM

    Yes, Espi is looking horrible even in Syracuse. But apparently, he's paying attention to the hitting coach there, and says he feels more comfortable at the plate than he has in years.May just take some time to find his groove with the new (old) approach. Got to kill his old bad habits that got him sent to AAA.

  58. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:59 PM

    Ok- now that is what I am talking about! Yesterday's haikus on twitter and today's fake fan fest. This is what is going to help us cope. As fans, we have been pressing and trying to do too much. We need to relax. And then we have our dear car y man Jayson Werth- I love that guy.

  59. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 9:59 PM

    And that was— CRAZY man

  60. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:03 PM

    Hmm. Bernadina scratched from the lineup. Wonder why

  61. Nats 128 - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:04 PM

    JD, if Espy moved runners up, got hits in the toughest of Hi Lev situations, and didnt K at critical times I would agree with you. Still no replacing that 1 for 15 in the postseason when it counted the most.21st in 2nd base OPS for 2012 is nothing to brag about. He was behind Jhonatan Solano's brother last year! Stats that prove Espy stinks!

  62. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:05 PM

    Remember my theme No more losses in June.#ESF

  63. Eric - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:06 PM

    "Guys are going to look at video DURING THE GAME?"Seriously…that's crazy.

  64. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:06 PM

    Right, Eric? They're suffering from information overload.

  65. Candide - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:07 PM

    Manassas Nats' Fan said… Remember my theme No more losses in June.Why are you telling US? Talk to the guys who have some control over it.

  66. Theophilus T. S. - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:10 PM

    With any luck Bernandina is being sold to the Chunichi Dragons to team up w/ Cabrera.

  67. Eric - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:13 PM

    I would imagine so, David. Reminds me of when I go through epic phases of running scales, learning theory, etc. After awhile I start executing techniques and theoretical constructs instead of playing guitar and expressing myself.On the upside, when I take a break from it I find it easy to slip back in to just playing and all the new concepts have been internalized.Hopefully the Nats can have the same outcome, and don't wait until ASG to take a break from the learning aspect.

  68. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:15 PM

    Shark has been scratched, back to a 2b outfield again#ESF

  69. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:16 PM

    Told them just need to talk it into existance.

  70. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:16 PM

    If we must have a 2B Outfielder, I'd prefer it's Kobernus over Lombo. At least Kobernus is fast.

  71. NatsLady - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:19 PM

    swami, well, he's a car-y man, too. Loves him some nice wheels.

  72. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:20 PM

    Sorry cant provide that.

  73. rmoore446 - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:21 PM

    I was one who groaned at Espy's increasingly futile at-bats and hoped for his replacement in the lineup. But I take no joy in his continuing problems at AAA. I hope he works it out as he has talent and if he can refind the groove, he'll be a major leaguer for some time to come. Given Redon's success, I doubt it will be with the Nats but it will come in a place of fresh starts.

  74. NatsLady - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:22 PM

    The Rangers are going to try to turn their top SS prospect (Profar) into a left fielder, because they already have a shortstop. Kid has never played an inning in the outfield, not even in little league. So it isn't just us.

  75. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:25 PM

    That's a little bit different, NL. Profar is a bat you have to have in the lineup. I could live with Lombo in the OF if he hit .300. He's about to fall under the Mendoza line though.

  76. Nats 128 - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:25 PM

    The #1 Pick overall Appel is a Boras guy and signed today. No drama there. 6 million reasons to be happy.

  77. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:25 PM

    JD – we will see…. I'm not sure the clubhouse is ready to give up on Espi… I wonder why Roger got scratched… Sigh, hopefully Lombo will be okay…

  78. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:28 PM

    Mark Zuckerman ‏@ZuckermanCSN nowPer #Nats spokesman, Roger Bernadina was scratched because he "got something in his eye." Is available to come off the bench tonight.Uh, what? He couldn't get something out of his eye in the 30 minutes before the game?

  79. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:28 PM

    NatsLady said… The Rangers are going to try to turn their top SS prospect (Profar) into a left fielder, because they already have a shortstop. Kid has never played an inning in the outfield, not even in little league. So it isn't just us. That goes back to what I say about if a guy can hit you find a place for him. LF is possibly temporary until they decide what to do with Kinsler.Profar is also very athletic. Should be a win/win for them.

  80. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:29 PM

    Gnat in the eye.

  81. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:35 PM

    Roger Bernadina took Eat Some Face a little literally as he did something to his own eyeball.

  82. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:36 PM

    Eric– nice musical example ! And true.

  83. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:37 PM

    Marks tweet makes you go uhmmmm….I really like Ray Knight..

  84. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:39 PM

    Does the sound on the MASN pre-game broadcast sound like its in a tunnel.

  85. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:44 PM

    Jeff Kobernus looks older than 24…

  86. NatsLady - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:46 PM

    Remember that baseball rules quiz? Don't feel bad.Matt Eisenberg#pointlessstatistic .0036 percent of people got 10/10 based on the percentages (aka 900 people out of 248,000+)

  87. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:47 PM

    Johnny Holliday: Bryce Harper has a shot at the All Star Game and also Ryan ZimmermanMe: Do you mean Jordan Zimmermann?

  88. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:52 PM

    Ok- so I am not the only one listening here. Yes, the sound is tinny , and theses guys are a joke. Did you hear Ray say that Espi is Davey's favorite player?

  89. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:52 PM

    No, he meant Ryan. Ryan is third in voting for NL 3B.

  90. natsfan1a - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:53 PM

    Speaking only for myself, I come here for Mark's own, original writing (then again, I'm in scroll mode at present due to time constraints).Nats Insider Nation awaits your own, original writing.

  91. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:53 PM

    Vin Scully on twitter tonight- I am following that.

  92. natsfan1a - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:57 PM

    Seconded.MicheleS said… GYFNG!!! We need a win, so #ESF! Go GIO! So ready for some home games June 19, 2013 5:13 PM

  93. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 10:59 PM

    Harper presently a starter in ASG.#ESF

  94. Eric - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:01 PM

    Thanks swami, glad it made sense.Awesome about Harper and the ASG!

  95. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:02 PM

    I am following Vin. He welcomed. Us as usual

  96. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:05 PM

    Everyone is falling all over each other supporting Eck right now. Methinks thou doth protest too much.

  97. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:06 PM

    Come on Nats…. Eat Some Philth Face(s)…. Nats – 10Philly – 1Lets go Nats!!!!

  98. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:08 PM

    That's the first time Span has swung at the first pitch of the game all season. Routine fly.

  99. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:09 PM

    Very surprised Span swung on the first pitch…

  100. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:09 PM

    I am so tired of hearing Bob say– easy out.

  101. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:10 PM

    Who said this morning they didnt eant to see Span to ground to first or lazy fly to left tonight?

  102. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:10 PM

    How hard have we made the pitcher work so far?

  103. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:10 PM

    I think Span decided before the game he was going to swing at the first pitch and try to ambush Kendrick. Wasn't a great pitch to hit though.

  104. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:11 PM

    Swami…..both Davey and Rizzo were asked direct questions by the media about Eck. So what could they have said that wouldn't sound too supportive (falling over each other) or unsuppirtive (throwing him under the bus)?

  105. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:11 PM

    Another looking strikeout. Sigh.

  106. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:11 PM

    Carp is wrong. Dodgers score 4 in game 1 to jump to 13th

  107. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:12 PM

    Another K with the bat on the shoulder…. *sigh*

  108. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:14 PM

    NatsJack– ah , the context explains it all. So that was, what, 8 pitches?

  109. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:14 PM

    Owe you a drink I was thinking if I should bother writing that is so common with team, and saw you already did it.I put in for Ryan Zim contest. I chalnged him to go a week without taking a called third strike nor get a swinging strikeout on a pitch out of the zone.

  110. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:15 PM

    Span take note. Leadoff hitters need to make it base.

  111. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:17 PM

    Ugh.

  112. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:17 PM

    Unh….

  113. paul brandt - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:18 PM

    joke of a park but michael young has just killed us all series.

  114. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:18 PM

    Doubt we see Philly take too many first pitch swings…

  115. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    McCatty when you going to coach these guys not to give up runs before we are way ahead? That has to be the memo each game#ESF

  116. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    So that was Gio after 8 pitches.,

  117. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    Gio is just challenging the offense to score more than 2 runs tonight.

  118. baseballswami - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:20 PM

    It's going to be a long night.

  119. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:21 PM

    Watching Philly take these at bats is just pissing me off… Ugh, patience at the plate.. Just ugh.

  120. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:21 PM

    Game winning homer by Michael Young in the 1st. We can't do two run comebacks.

  121. phil dunton - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:22 PM

    This is beginning to feel like the dark days of 2006-2010. By the time Harper gets back, it will probably be too little too late. I have to admit that a series sweep by the Phillies would be humiliating.

  122. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:23 PM

    On the Sunday game in Pittsburgh I went he gave up homer on first pitch. Loaded bases with no outs and we won 6-2.His last win.#ESF

  123. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:23 PM

    Davey says everything looks okay.

  124. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:24 PM

    We got this game still.

  125. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:24 PM

    Wow, Gio hasn't won since that game in Pitt?

  126. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:25 PM

    That Pitt game seemed so long ago…Nats – 10Philly – 2

  127. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:26 PM

    Maybe if Rendon hits 3 homers…..

  128. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:26 PM

    We might win 3-2….

  129. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:27 PM

    Is Adam getting out of his latest funk??? Good hit…

  130. paul brandt - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:28 PM

    eat some face Jayson!

  131. paul brandt - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:29 PM

    or maybe not eat some face…maybe next AB, lack of O is just killing me.

  132. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:31 PM

    Uhm, FP, I've been saying that forever… Pitching was better last year, from both the SP and the BP…

  133. paul brandt - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:32 PM

    ok I'm not going to continue this but Chris Davis hit his 25th & 26th HR today & his team scored 13 runs!? can you imagine the board here if that happened?! come on Nats bats!!!

  134. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:32 PM

    Dang Desi, that was a horrible pitch to swing on…

  135. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:32 PM

    FP, where is the emotion in the at-bats. RZim just piling up the K's looking. Lazy floats and groundouts point to poor contact.

  136. SCNatsFan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:33 PM

    I agree, Davey says loosen up, everything is ok, this is the team we want. I hear they are trying to turn Walters into a left fielder too. Maybe Dykstra too. Can never play enough weak hitting middle infielders.Go Nats.

  137. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:35 PM

    Why didn't Lombo pull an Utley and just turn and let that pitch glance off his belt?

  138. paul brandt - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:36 PM

    old town julie regurgitating mark's "identity" article…guess she slept in today, weak.

  139. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:36 PM

    Lombo, goddess bless him, is not a guy who should be a regular on a division winner, nor should he be utilized other than as a late inning replacement, but he is out there every night in the starting eight.

  140. Section 222 - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:38 PM

    Oh boy. That sideline report was excruciating. And Carp says: "Identity of the team. What does that even mean?" Classic.

  141. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:40 PM

    Gio is looking good. Sad that he made one mistake and it could cost him the game.

  142. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:40 PM

    Good inning Gio…

  143. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:41 PM

    No. No. No. David – no worries… We are gonna score some runs…

  144. Section 222 - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:42 PM

    And Julie says, it's isn't going to happen overnight, but it's happening. Things are turning around little by little. Too bad we've lost 4 of the last five games, but it's turning around, believe you me. I can feel it.

  145. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:43 PM

    Agree with Bob that Ramos coming back is a big addition. Assuming he stays healthy of course, which is not a safe assumption.

  146. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:44 PM

    Julie is pointless…

  147. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:44 PM

    1 loss 6 no decisions

  148. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:45 PM

    Julie works for MASN/The Nats. Don't expect anything substantial out of her and you'll be able to enjoy her "commentary" a lot more. Mark, Kolko, Amanda, Kilgore are the real news people.

  149. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:45 PM

    Sun May 5th was the date

  150. paul brandt - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:45 PM

    hate to say it but the difference between Rzim throwing to 1B from the 3B position vs. Rendon when he played there a few times really is eye-opening.

  151. SCNatsFan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:46 PM

    Ramos will help, Harper will surely help but you assume everyone stas healthy and gets on track. I have seen no evidence this is anything but an average team this year. Sadly they have become below average.

  152. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:46 PM

    Hey RZim's throws may not be great, but at least he's not committing an error a game anymore.Hope I didn't just jinx it.

  153. Faraz Shaikh - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:46 PM

    come on nats. let's go.

  154. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:46 PM

    Davis has 66 RBI. Desi and zim each have 33 to lead team. Half of Davis

  155. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:47 PM

    He isn't fast enough!

  156. David Proctor - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:47 PM

    Of course. That was a good bunt by Span and he gets thrown out anyway.

  157. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:47 PM

    Sigh…

  158. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:48 PM

    This game is almost already in the win column.

  159. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:49 PM

    Span's obp down around .300.

  160. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:50 PM

    That was a really close out… I had to look at it a couple times..

  161. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:51 PM

    Good play by ARendon….

  162. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    The bunt was good the sore foot must slow Span just enough not to get a hit.Better with 0 outs though.Revere stopped by Rendon.Both bunts good fielders just better.

  163. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    Revere's too slow.

  164. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    At least it was a close out :)

  165. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:53 PM

    For the few of you who were negative on going from Espi to Rendon at 2nd…….

  166. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:53 PM

    Rendon get us started this inning.

  167. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:53 PM

    Both were good bunts but better fielding…

  168. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:54 PM

    Dangit MNf… I owe you drink… My bad…

  169. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:54 PM

    He is about as fast his Uncle Paul Revere on a horse.

  170. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:55 PM

    I will take maalox and grenedene mix

  171. NatsJack in Florida - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:55 PM

    Mrs.B….that was my point.

  172. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    How come I have this feeling after the Indian series Eck has been working with Rendon

  173. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:57 PM

    37 pitches.. Shameful…But non of the Nats look comfortable at the plate…

  174. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:57 PM

    William O. Douglas Loeffler said… Span's obp down around .300. Yes but good to see him finally lay down a bunt. He needs to do that more. With his speed plus the jump from the lefty batter's box he can beat those out. Kendrick made a good defensive play on him.

  175. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:58 PM

    We are getting very close to getting a man on base.

  176. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:58 PM

    Why pull an outside pitch. Drive it to right don't pull.

  177. paul brandt - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:58 PM

    why did Rzim get married? haha.

  178. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    When you are sinking at sea anyway like Span is, you might as well try a different stroke….

  179. Section 222 - Jun 19, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    David, I don't know if you were watching last year, but Kristina was never that inane. That's why she's now working for MLB Network. She was too good for the job (and got sick of the team trying to soak her with Gatorade). This wasn't quite as embarrassing as the feature on the new Club 3 was, but it was close. Team Identity, what does that even mean? I love it.

  180. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:01 AM

    Gio might not get great support but this is basically at least the second time that he has blown the game for us in the 1st inning, just as he did in the opening series against the Braves.

  181. David Proctor - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:01 AM

    I watched last year and liked Kristina, but she was the exception not the rule to these sideline reporters. Also, it's easier to report when things are going well than when they're going bad.

  182. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:01 AM

    Frustrating…l

  183. paul brandt - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:02 AM

    222, spot on, bro…at least have some insight…& don't tell me the lerners are reviewing her "stories"…silly! 222, thanks, so right…see ine of 736pm.

  184. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:02 AM

    It is sort of demeaning the way that they always choose a tiny cute girl/woman for that job. Apparently, looks are part of the job requirement for sideline reporter.

  185. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:03 AM

    ALR swings at one at least 8 inside instead of taking the walk.It that hitting approach along with pulling outside pitches that create few men on base.

  186. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:03 AM

    This game is a definite crossroads. What the bleep is going on. Awful at-bats so far even by Anthony Rendon. 1 hit in the 3.5 hole and 1 line drive by Lombo that was caught. Nats swinging for the fences as usual and catching lots of air. Get line drives!

  187. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    He is pitching much better tonight. I was at that game too.

  188. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    9 outs in a row by Gio, but he couldn't get it done when it mattered unfortunately. There is not a lot of margin for error for Nats pitchers.

  189. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    Gio pushing way too many counts to 3 balls and gives up the leadoff walk.

  190. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    Uhm… Julie isn't that cute..

  191. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:06 AM

    I watch many games a week. It is a requirement.

  192. David Proctor - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:06 AM

    I think Julie is pretty cute. But she sucks at her job.

  193. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:06 AM

    Wow, you sound like some of my frat brothers. My standards must not be so high….

  194. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:06 AM

    I'm not saying Eck is the problem but he isn't the answer… Nats are just lifeless….They all look uncomfortable….

  195. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:07 AM

    Hard to hit 3 run homers when bases are empty.

  196. paul brandt - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:07 AM

    MrsB, funny, just put a wig & some make-up on Johnny Holiday and let him do it.

  197. Section 222 - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    The idea of Zim making the relay throw for a DP is a little scary.

  198. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    I have no issue acknowledging if a woman is pretty or not… Kristina was pretty… Cari C is pretty… Pam (on Fox) is not pretty… Just like I don think Kristina is….And Howard swung…

  199. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:08 AM

    Presently no room for error.That is why importantnot to give up any runs.

  200. MrsB loves the Nats - Jun 20, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    WE GOT A RUNNER!!!!!!!

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 58 47 --
ATLANTA 58 50 1.5
MIAMI 53 54 6.0
NEW YORK 52 56 7.5
PHILADELPHIA 47 61 12.5
Through Wednesday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
THU: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
FRI: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SUN: Phillies at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
MON: Orioles at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
TUE: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Mets at Nats, 7:05 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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