Jul 22, 2013, 7:17 PM EDT
|USA Today Sports Images|
[Updated 5:36 p.m.]
Stuck in a season-long offensive funk that actually got worse over the last two weeks, the Nationals fired Rick Eckstein today, a move that contradicted overwhelming public support for the hitting coach from club officials no matter how unproductive his lineup had been.
Rick Schu, the organization's minor-league hitting coordinator, will take over big-league coaching duties, beginning on Tuesday as the Nats host the Pirates.
The Nationals can only hope a new voice — not to mention today's surprising shakeup — can get this struggling offensive group on track before it falls completely out of the race in the NL East.
The Nationals rank 14th out of 15 NL clubs in runs scored, on-base percentage and OPS this season, and 13th in batting average and total bases. They scored only five total runs during a weekend sweep at the hands of the Dodgers and over their last 12 losses have scored a total of 18 runs.
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NL EAST STANDINGS
FRI: Nats at Reds, 7:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Reds, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Reds, 1:10 p.m.
MON: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
WED: Nats at Marlins, 12:40 p.m.
THU: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
Full season schedule
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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