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Game 97: Dodgers at Nats

Jul 20, 2013, 7:24 PM EDT

Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

Davey Johnson intended to open the second half of the season last night with the same lineup he used to close out the first half on Sunday: with Bryce Harper leading off and Denard Span down in the 7-spot. But after Adam LaRoche came down with the flu, Johnson had to adjust and use Harper as his cleanup hitter against the Dodgers.

That look obviously didn't produce much offensively and resulted in a frustrating, 3-2 loss, so Davey proclaimed afterward he planned to go back to the Harper-as-leadoff-man lineup tonight (assuming LaRoche was ready to return). "I do like Harper leading off," the manager said. "I think that frees him up. He's usually on base."

Unfortunately, LaRoche remains out once again, so it's back to the same lineup from last night. We'll have to see if it can mount a challenge against Zack Greinke, and if Gio Gonzalez can out-duel the Dodgers right-hander.

Updates to come…

LOS ANGELES DODGERS at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, Ch. 9, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500), XM 89
Weather: Isolated storms, 90 degrees, Wind 12 mph out to CF

NATIONALS (48-48)
CF Denard Span
2B Anthony Rendon
3B Ryan Zimmerman
LF Bryce Harper

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575 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:51 AM

    Staymen does it! Lucky that wasn't a 450 foot shot it was such a poor pitch. Way to go Davey!

  2. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:51 AM

    Span had him played very poorly. Harper would have caught that ball.

  3. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:52 AM

    I am going fishing tomorrow.

  4. David Proctor - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:52 AM

    That's BS, WODL. The CF doesn't pick where they're positioned, the coaching staff does. Span played it as well as he could, but NOBODY was getting to that ball.

  5. MrsB loves the Nats - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:52 AM

    DJ lost this game for us….

  6. Knoxville Nat - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:53 AM

    Wow! The Dodgers can execute a sac bunt! Wish the hell we could do the same.

  7. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:53 AM

    Davey now brings in the lefty. WTF I don't understand him. You know AGonz is your 1st batter! He's a lefty!Then you have Ryan Zimmerman playing off the line!

  8. NatsJack in Florida - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:54 AM

    Hate to tell you this Craig, but next stop… Syracuse.

  9. mick - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:54 AM

    Stammen looks like a loser just like this team….

  10. MrsB loves the Nats - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:54 AM

    Davey does stuff too little too late….

  11. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:54 AM

    According to Soriano, the outfielders decide where to stand.

  12. Unknown - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:54 AM

    You Nats apologists here make me sick. We need to clean house, this team will go nowhere as is.

  13. Secret wasian man - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:55 AM

    Hahahahaha. Player of the game Stammen. Now.we can go to bed. Another bad move by Davey. Hope hegets the flu

  14. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:55 AM

    NatsJack, if Stammen has options, absolutely. He's been absolutely awful. What was Davey thinking?

  15. David Proctor - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:55 AM

    Tom Schad ‏@Tom_Schad 45sWith Ohlendorf excelling in long relief, Craig Stammen might be the odd man out when Ryan Mattheus returns. #NatsInteresting thought.

  16. David Proctor - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:56 AM

    You hope a 70 year old man gets the flu? Very classy, SWM. Very.

  17. MrsB loves the Nats - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:56 AM

    I'm beginning to think Stammen is hurt… That was a damn gopher right over the plate….To the Dal he goes for Mattheus…But again… WHY WAS HE IN THERE IN THE FIRST PLACE… dJ just now going to Abad…

  18. mick - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:56 AM

    this sorry, no account team will not win until they face the Mets..Pirates will embarrass Nats90 losses this year and if the Lerners raise ticket prices in 2014, they can go to hell

  19. Nats 128 - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:56 AM

    "What was Davey thinking"Thats the problem, he wasnt thinking!

  20. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:57 AM

    Who is the guy who decided that we were top-notch offensively? Rizzo, who dealt away our power hitter and brought in nothing to replace him except Tyler Moore.

  21. MrsB loves the Nats - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:57 AM

    Krol*

  22. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:58 AM

    Just pathetic that Rizzo would put a team out there with nobody who can hit. Rizzo thinks Span and Tracey are great hitters and Hairston is the stop-gap.

  23. Nats 128 - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:58 AM

    Davey has alot of splaining to do. Peg another loss on Daveys nose.

  24. Scott Margenau - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:58 AM

    Storen and Stamen. That's what davey chose. He's just not smart. This makes at least a dozen games he's lost us. I hated him in bmore, hate him here. Quit ruining my teams davey!

  25. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:59 AM

    It is hard to raise ticket prices anymore with Stubhub, Mick….

  26. Nats 128 - Jul 21, 2013 at 2:59 AM

    I also want to know why Zimmerman wasnt playing No Doubles.

  27. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:00 AM

    My first question late in game why Zim off tge line. That allowed first double.That made me real mad. Stamnen has .allowedruns 4 of the 8 games he has pitched in July. Obviously he has become a problem, who needs to straightened up

  28. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:00 AM

    Davey makes some mistakes. All managers do. What is he supposed to do when he has the worst offensive team in MLB?

  29. mick - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:00 AM

    we are seeing first hand all of Rizzo's garbage moves…Nats have fallen back to 2007-2009 levels

  30. David Proctor - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:01 AM

    That's an error? Uh…in what world?Not that it matters, but…

  31. Nats 128 - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:01 AM

    Thats twice that if Zimmerman is playing no doubles defense he gets 2 easy plays for a 3rd baseman.

  32. Knoxville Nat - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:01 AM

    I remember earlier in the game when Zim made an error, Carp stated that the Nats lead the league, maybe all of MLB in errors. Thinking of that, watching poor execution by hitters in situations like a sac bunt attempt, generally not playing what Riggleman use to call a "clean game", makes me wonder does DJ and the coaching staff not put any emphasis on fundamentals? At times this team looks so disinterested.

  33. Secret wasian man - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:02 AM

    The fans deserve better. They will stop coming. This crap is unwatcheable. Give it jp F P. Stop sugar coating everything. This team ia an absolute joke. It is an error. Shut up carp please.

  34. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:02 AM

    Offensively:Span is terribleSuzuki is terribleEspinosa was terribleTracey is terribleNone of the other guys is much better than average except Harper and he hasn't been the same since May. Our only hope is a Brave collapse.

  35. Almazar80 - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:02 AM

    At this point, Davey is a total has been, Rizzo an average GM at best, and the Nats are fast becoming the big bust of the year. Well, they already are. Nobody really thinks this team will come back, do they. Pathetic. I thought that they were at least mediocre. I was wrong. They flat out stink. Reverting to the form that they've always been. A collection of losers.

  36. NatsJack in Florida - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:02 AM

    The Nats will go down with a whimper. There is absolutely no life in this organization right now.Rizzo has to fix this.

  37. mick - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:02 AM

    nats will go down like cowards in the 10th

  38. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:04 AM

    This is what I am talking about with Span. We don't give up many runs. We can't afford a center fielder whose offensive production is 20 percent below the league average for an average player.

  39. mick - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:05 AM

    SWMwell stated, unfortunately

  40. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:05 AM

    Watch how bad our at bats will be here. The worst thing about game 5 was the pathetic at bats we took in the bottom of the 9th.

  41. Knoxville Nat - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:06 AM

    NatsJack, what would you suggest Rizzo do?

  42. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:06 AM

    The thing I will always remember about Gary Carter was his at bat with two outs against the Red Sox in game six. The Nats would have just given up.

  43. Secret wasian man - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:06 AM

    Any other manager would have already been gone. Who cares about last year now. What a depressing team. No excitement. Just like watching grass grow

  44. pedrocerrano - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:06 AM

    ummm.. that was definitely not "the worst thing about game 5"

  45. Manassas Nats' Fan - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:07 AM

    Until this team plays like tgeir mad, this is going poorly quickly.Zim ruin his great night by simply ignoring extra innings 101 .protect the lines.

  46. Scott Margenau - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:07 AM

    mick said…nats will go down like cowards in the 10thOnly hope u didn't knock on wood.

  47. mick - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:08 AM

    Knox Rizzo can begin rebuilding for 2014…nothing he can do about 2013. he must trade now the garbage on this team for prospects

  48. Secret wasian man - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:09 AM

    Fizzle should politely tell Davey its not working. And don't let the door hit you on the way out.

  49. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:09 AM

    That's 3 of Stammen's 8 appearances in relief this month where he has given up 2 or more runs.When you pitch an inning at a time mostly and give up more than your starter, you are dog cr-p.What does Davey see? Again, look what Mattingly did. No doubles defense and Rendon bashes one down the line and Uribe is standing on the line. Mattingly moves his relievers in and out situationally and Davey at least could've gone with ABad to start the 10th against the lefty leadoff.Just poor managing by Davey but it could've been over in the 8th if Lombo was the pinch-hitter instead of Hairston.

  50. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:10 AM

    Actually, it was. St. Louis came out with confidence in the 9th, like a great franchise. Washington came out like the 60's era Senators….

  51. Knoxville Nat - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:10 AM

    Looking again, really?

  52. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:10 AM

    "We'll get 'em tomorrow…."

  53. mick - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:11 AM

    jayson Werthless tonight

  54. Coolhandbane (formally Bob Saget) - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:12 AM

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  55. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:13 AM

    Rizzo fundamentally misunderstood the mathematics of the Nats' batting order. We depended on getting a couple of guys on and then hitting homers. We were never good at bunching hits. When we lost Morse, we lost the heart and soul of our offense and ruined the clubhouse vibe. But at least Rizzo got to mold his team his way….

  56. Ghost Of Steve M. - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:13 AM

    I guess that was Strike 3.

  57. David Proctor - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:13 AM

    Have no problem AT ALL with Werth getting tossed now. Not like it'll matter.

  58. Scott Margenau - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:13 AM

    Werth has to be Davey and fight for his team. Sad.

  59. MrsB loves the Nats - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:14 AM

    What the heck is there to discuss…. Really…

  60. Secret wasian man - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:14 AM

    Another backwards k pathetic. Sit down Davey before you fall down. That was a strike. What a bunch of babies. Wow that wasn't a strike to Tracy though

  61. David Proctor - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:14 AM

    This one hurts. No defense.

  62. William O. Douglas Loeffler - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:15 AM

    I had no problem with Harper getting tossed.

  63. mick - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:17 AM

    Nats have no heart or guts at all.

  64. Scott Margenau - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:18 AM

    Ray being real tonight

  65. pedrocerrano - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:18 AM

    Fire Davey. Sell at the deadline. Play with at least a modicum of pride in the final 3rd.

  66. Secret wasian man - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:19 AM

    WODL hahaha. OMG IS RAY COMPLAING ABOUT THE UMPS. I hats everything about this years team. Bunch of cry baby's lead by a man who is foo stubborn to quit. More errors thank runs tonight. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

  67. mick - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:20 AM

    Rizzo destroyed a franchise in less than 1 seasondavey is terrible, i am sick of his whining voice now.

  68. Scott Margenau - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:20 AM

    Lol Pedro. F u jobu — I do it myself.

  69. Secret wasian man - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:22 AM

    Anybody gonna ask why stammen. Why hairston. Why span every damnable day.

  70. Secret wasian man - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:24 AM

    Davey defending eck

  71. Knoxville Nat - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:25 AM

    I'll answer my question to NatsJack, what should Rizzo do? First of all we need to change our approach at bat and why it may not be deserved, I would fire Eck if for no other reason to shake things up and you can't fire 25 players. If Johnson isn't comfortable with that decision I would replace Johnson with Knorr. No one is irreplaceable in my opinion. I'd also consider replacing Spam as a lead off hitter and possibly bring up a Eury Perez or a Corey Brown to play CF. I would also look at acquiring another bat or two for the bench despite Tracy's and Bernadina's success tonight. Overall they have failed for most of the season. And last I would send Stammen to Syracuse when Matheus is ready to return to the roster.

  72. Almazar80 - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:27 AM

    It's not even a letdown. It's their norm. If they're lucky, they may beat their 2011 record. Probably not. Lacking in talent, desire, coaching, chemistry, you name it. A flawed, non contender. Rizzo does not deserve a new contract. Harper, this year, has been a bust. And so has his team. In the end, Harper may end up being an over hyped, slightly better than average player.

  73. pedrocerrano - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:28 AM

    I'm ready to sue MLB.TV for showing me the same re-run 4 nights a week

  74. Knoxville Nat - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:28 AM

    Span, not Spam, although it may me appropriate.

  75. Scott Margenau - Jul 21, 2013 at 3:49 AM

    pedrocerrano said…I'm ready to sue MLB.TV for showing me the same re-run 4 nights a weekBahhh haaaa!! U r killing it!

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