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Zimmerman having shoulder examined after latest error

Apr 6, 2014, 12:53 AM EST

AP AP

Whether there has been a mental component to Ryan Zimmerman’s throwing issues over the last two-plus years remains a topic of discussion. There is no debating, however, the physical component of this longstanding problem, as became painfully obvious Saturday night during the Nationals’ 6-2 loss to the Braves.

After committing another ghastly throwing error in the fourth inning — one that helped open the floodgates and send the Nationals to their 15th loss to the Braves in their last 21 games against their division rivals — Zimmerman revealed his surgically repaired right shoulder was hurting again. And Matt Williams decided not to take any chances.

Zimmerman, who had his shoulder operated on following the 2012 season, was removed from the game and is now scheduled to be examined by doctors Sunday, a potentially alarming development for the Nationals both in the short and long terms.

“We thought it prudent to get him out of there and make sure that everything’s OK,” Williams said.

Zimmerman hoped he had moved beyond this issue late last season, when after a long and often embarrassing battle with simple throwing mechanics he appeared to rediscover the form that made him a Gold Glove Award winner only four years earlier. But some of the throwing woes cropped up again during spring training, and they most certainly have reared their ugly head again since the regular season opened Monday in New York.

Zimmerman has needed to attempt only two “routine” throws across the diamond through the season’s first five games, but both ended in errors, the ball sailing well past Adam LaRoche’s reach at first base. Watch the 29-year-old work out before games or take practice throws before innings, though, and it’s clear those two errors weren’t an aberration.

“He’s our captain on this team,” LaRoche said. “He’s a big piece of it, to say the least. To watch him go through that, it’s frustrating. We’re all behind him, to help him do whatever we can to help him out. I know it’s eating at him. That’s a guy that’s in that cage, when nobody’s around, throwing all day long. Nobody wants it worse than he does, and he’s putting the time in trying to find it.”

Zimmerman’s error Saturday night, on a grounder to his left by Andrelton Simmons, came with the Nationals leading 2-0 and with ace Stephen Strasburg on the mound. That play, though, completely changed the game’s complexion. One run scored on the error itself. Another scored moments later when Braves pitcher Julio Teheran poked a fastball from Strasburg to right fielder for an RBI single.

The floodgates completely opened one inning later, with Atlanta bunching together four singles and a walk to produce four more runs, knocking Strasburg from the game before he even completed five frames.

The whole scene surely conjured up memories of last season’s travails, both for Zimmerman and Strasburg, who frequently struggled to overcome defensive mistakes behind him. But this wasn’t exactly a meltdown for the right-hander, who did put himself in trouble throughout the evening and showed no outward signs of a mental break once things started to go downhill.

“I think just from last year, I want to make a conscious effort of not letting that stuff bother me,” Strasburg said. “I don’t really feel like I got out of my gameplan or anything. I felt like I was giving everything I had and battling. I just left some pitches up.”

The outcome of the the game — yet another loss to a Braves club that has become something of a mental hurdle for the Nationals as a whole — was troubling enough. The possibility of losing the franchise third baseman due to a shoulder injury that refuses to go away, and all the short-term and long-term ramifications of that injury, is far more troubling to a ballclub that only five games into the season has more than its share of significant concerns.

“You need his glove. You need his bat in that lineup,” LaRoche said. “Kind of like [injured catcher Wilson Ramos]. If it happens, it happens. Hopefully it’s not too long. But early in the season, the most important thing right now is just getting him healthy and getting him back out there. If he needs a few days, or whatever it is, it’s not the end of the world. But we’ll miss him, if in fact he’s out for awhile.”

138 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. souldrummer - Apr 6, 2014 at 1:03 AM

    Very, very sad development for the hometown 9. I expect this to be an ongoing problem for the Nats this year, and you’ve got to believe that they will definitely move the expensive Zimmerman to first base next year once LaRoche’s contract expires. Mark, is there any indication that the shoulder issues are affecting Zimmerman’s bat?

  2. veejh - Apr 6, 2014 at 1:51 AM

    …..and showed no outward signs of a mental break once things started to go downhill.
    ———————–
    I disagree. I could see it, maybe not as much as last season, where visible pouting was apparent, but I could tell he was irked. A mental midget SS appears to be, even this year. I was really hoping he had matured.

    • 34natsfan - Apr 6, 2014 at 6:26 AM

      Mental midget? Oh brother… Please. Cast stones much?

    • Hiram Hover - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:45 AM

      A couple of losses have brought out the Legion of Doom.

      Bench Zim for the year. Send Stras to the asylum.

      C’mon, people.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:25 PM

        The Legion of Doom is always lurking in waiting for anything negative. While the situation here is not good, the team will adjust.

      • sjm308 - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:43 PM

        Ghost – I really hope you are correct – these guys are pros and this is where leadership both on the field and in the dugout will play a huge role.

        Would love to see Harper break out of whatever is bothering him and can’t wait to see how Taylor pitches today.

        Go Nats!!

        ps: I remember those posts that Mark deleted and they were pretty bad but that was just one person. You and I are not always in agreement but I think we keep it civil.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:54 PM

        sjm, of course we keep it civil. Go Lady Terps!

  3. laddieblahblah - Apr 6, 2014 at 3:27 AM

    If Zim cannot make routine throws to 1b he should not be in the lineup. I really can’t blame Stras for being irked. He must feel like he is stuck in a real-life “Groundhog Day” nightmare with Zimmerman.

    If Zim can’t throw because of his shoulder, then he should sit until he can. First Ramos, and now Zim, and the season is less than a week old. Matt has been dealt some tough cards, very early on.

    • nats128 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:42 AM

      Its gut check time. Last year the Barves lost Jonny Venters and Beachy to injury and Chipper Jones to retirement and this year lost Hudson to trade and Medlen and Beachy to injury and still don’t have Minor. They only have 1 returning starter from last year in Teheran.

      Yes, Matty has it tough and like you say Matt has been dealt some tough cards. Add to that figuring out whats going on with Bryce Harper.

    • dgourds - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:10 AM

      Agree. Better to have Rendon at third and Espinosa at second than having a guy who can’t throw the ball across the diamond. William will take care of it. He’s a no bull type of guy..

      • laddieblahblah - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:30 AM

        Agree. Rather have Espi’s bat in the lineup than Ryan’s arm at 3rd base, unless and until RZ can make routine throws to 1b look routine.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:42 AM

        Laddie, Groundhog Day describes it perfectly.

  4. 34natsfan - Apr 6, 2014 at 6:23 AM

    Zimm is a great guy… Very proud. Hate sering hom like this. Even when he makes throws form is terrible and has been for 2 years. You only throw like that when you are hurt or afraid to get hurt. Hate the idea but he and Nats may be foing irteprable damage to him and season by asking him to keep playing 3rd. He deserves better. Let him rehab it and get better/ move him permanently to 1B/or trade him to AL so he can DH. We owe him for years of productivity and loyalty. He deserved a situation where he can succeed without permanently damaging shoulder or fear of it.

    • 34natsfan - Apr 6, 2014 at 6:29 AM

      Spell check version…Zimm is a great guy… Very proud. Hate seeing him like this. Even when he makes throws form is terrible and has been for 2 years. You only throw like that when you are hurt or afraid to get hurt. Hate the idea but he and Nats may be doing irreparable damage to both him and season by asking him to keep playing 3rd. He deserves better. Let him rehab it and get better/ move him permanently to 1B/or trade him to AL so he can DH. We owe him for years of productivity and loyalty. He deserves a situation where he can succeed without permanently damaging shoulder or fear of it.

      • nats128 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:49 AM

        Someone called into Phil Wood on the postgame last night and said his throwing has been bad for 5 years. I think that is true and getting progressively worse.

        He gets away with the sidearm throw but last year we all learned that it was far worse than imaginable because he was cheating. By playing up on the grass and closer to 1st base he was cutting down the distance on his throw but what he was doing was taking the “hot corner” and making himself closer to the batter and it doesnt take a scientific genius to figure out your reaction time is lessened by a fraction of a second which is rather large when you consider that his range would then be diminished. Errors were bad but balls were going by him for doubles and singles that should have been fielded. Those get counted as hits.

  5. NatsNut - Apr 6, 2014 at 7:02 AM

    Man, I feel so bad for Zim.

  6. rabbit433 - Apr 6, 2014 at 7:07 AM

    For the good of the team and Ryan, let Zimmerman sit out the year. We have able bodies players, physically and mentally, who can improve the team at this point. I like Ryan, but we really do need someone who can be relied on. We do not need to hold our breath every time a ball is hit to Zim. Too bad, and hopefully he can continue with a great career in the future.

    • laddieblahblah - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:10 AM

      Yeah. After 2 years, the shoulder appears to be no better than when it first started acting up. He’s had 2 operations on it, already. The move to 1b would minimize the damage, but he would still have to field bunts and throw the ball somewhere; he would still have to start those 3 – 6 – 3 DPs; he would still have to play cutoff man for the right fielder and make the relay throws.

      Every sac bunt would be down the 1b line, potentially becoming a game-changing disaster for the Nats every time Zim picked it up and threw.

      This is a real dilemma. Not sure an AL team would want to eat Zim’s salary for a DH. If his shoulder is hurt badly enough, it could also affect his swing, as it did in 2012 and 2013, until it finally appeared to heal in the 2nd half of 2013.

      Let’s see what the MRI shows. Is it possible that he already has arthritis, and the cold weather aggravated the inflammation?

      I thought Grady Sizemore was done. He missed 2 full years of ML ball, but is making a strong comeback with the BoSox. You can never say never with a great player.

    • Hiram Hover - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:43 AM

      Thank you, Dr. Rabbit, but if it’s ok with you, I think the Nats will wait for him to get an actual medical exam.

      Something is wrong and needs to be fixed. But the idea that internet commenters know what it is and know the remedy–sit out the year–is a bit, um, far-fetched.

      • laddieblahblah - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:10 AM

        “Thank you, Dr. Rabbit, but if it’s ok with you, I think the Nats will wait for him to get an actual medical exam.”

        Uh, clean your glasses, and read what I actually wrote. If you did, and your response accurately reflects your actual level of understanding, take a course in reading comprehension. And try to finally get that H.S equivalency diploma, while you’re at it.

      • Hiram Hover - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:18 AM

        Laddie

        You know, I could respond in kind, and tell you to clean your glasses, question your educational attainments, etc etc.

        Instead, I’ll just point out that my comment was addressed to “Mr Rabbit”–the original poster–not you, as the bit you cut and pasted indicates.

      • laddieblahblah - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:31 AM

        My apologies, Hiram. Another one of my many mistakes. And a gracious response from you, considering my misunderstanding.

      • Hiram Hover - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:45 AM

        Laddie

        No worries. We’re all obviously a bit on edge. I thought your observations above were on pt.

  7. Joe Seamhead - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:06 AM

    We all bleed for Ryan Zimmerman, but last night it wasn’t just the throw that effected the game, but also the next inning when the line drive went “past a diving Zimmerman.” That was the play that ended with Lobaton’s error. Zim was,as Ghost and others have said for a year, cheating up near the grass. That was a ball that he used to get to 99% of the time. More runs came in and both Zimmerman’s and Strasburg’s night was about over. Honestly, I have stuck up for Zimmerman for the past two years, but whether it’s his shoulder, or the yips, he can’t play third base for this team right now, maybe never again. This team can’t win with him there, and the cold fact is they have to accept it and move on. Can he come back? Who knows for sure? If his shoulder doesn’t fully recover can he successfully make the move to first? I have my doubts about that. What happened to him getting “significant time at first” during spring training? Two innings? Maybe the coaches and managers saw more than they have shared with us. Godspeed for a quick and full recovery,Ryan, in spite of what has transpired the past couple of years.

    After the game Phil Woods, in a poorly veiled dig at Davey Johnson, said to a caller that this wasn’t the same as last year, and that the difference was because of the change in managers, that last year there was never a sense of urgency, and that Matt Williams had this team come out of spring training with a sense of urgency. Well, losing both Ryan Zimmerman and Wilson Ramos at this early juncture certainly has created a sense of urgency for this old fan. So has the melting down of the confidence level of young Bryce Harper. The kid is a mess internally right now.It’s a slump, ball players go through them, let’s hope he snaps out of it soon.
    .
    Personally, I’m not as worried about Strasburg’s psyche as others here, nor do I question his toughness. No, he didn’t pitch great last night, especially after the errors, but I think he’ll be fine.

    Our new third base coach can only get better, right? Look, I don’t care much for BJ Upton, but he does have a great arm. Sending Lobaton on that play was just baseball stupid. Two unfortunate mistakes by him has only given the Braves more swagger.

    Our new young manager is certainly being tested early on several levels of his managing skills and capabilities.

    Ok, Nats, let’s go get ‘em today!

    • laddieblahblah - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:12 AM

      Well said, Joe. Not sure 1b is the answer, either. See my comments on that, above.

  8. Eric - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:30 AM

    What a sad development :(

    • Eric - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:41 AM

      PS – Let’s hope Rendon can keep it up, Espi really has “figured it out,” and Frandsen process to be a stroke of luck and genius.

      I’m thinking Kobernus comes up…

      • Eric - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:58 AM

        process = proves

        And, I suppose that post indicates that I think Zim is headed for the DL…

  9. Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:39 AM

    Nicely put Joe. Sad to say, Zim wasn’t recovered last year, he wasn’t recovered this spring, and he isn’t recovered now. I don’t know what the solution, but the first step is recognizing the problem, not pretending it’s fixed.

    His throwing problems long pre-date the shoulder issue, by the way. It’s his Achilles Heel I’m afraid.

    I’d say the team as a whole didn’t step up last night. Stras let things get away from him, and the bats were lifeless. Heck, even Danny misplayed a double play ball, though the official scorer generously didn’t give him an error.

    You could just feel the air go out of the park after Zim’s error. We were still up 2-1, but it felt like the game was lost.

    Best part of the night – finally meeting Eric and getting the long awaited Steal Your Face sticker. It’ll be on my car this afternoon. Thanks. Nice to connect with sjm and his son as well. Friends are good to have when times are tough.

    • Eric - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:46 AM

      Great meeting you, too, 222! All too brief, but still good to put a face to the screen name.

    • Joe Seamhead - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:55 AM

      We went to sec 104 before the game to try and find Eric and sjm308 but wanted to get to our seats in 314 by first pitch. I met 308 briefly a couple of years back, but didn’t recognize him around 104. Oh well, maybe another time. I’ll probably get to about 25 more games this year.
      My son had no ticket ahead of time last night, got in on one of the $5 upper deck seats, got a tee shirt, met Ray Knight and spent about 10 minutes talking to him about the Desi/Upton ground rule double, came up to see us in 314 and got a seat from a guy behind us whose partner didn’t come to the game. Not a bad day in the life. Except it was cold and we lost.
      BTW, this racist, stupid, chop crap in our house has got to stop. It’s not quite 2009-11 Phillie fan obnoxious, but it’s getting there.

      • Eric - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:01 AM

        Sorry sorry to miss you Joe! Didn’t realize you were gonna try to catch up with us. Did you want a GD sticker?

      • micksback1 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:27 AM

        right on about the chop, you and me may be in the minority on that. I dare anyone of these jerks to do the chop in front of a Native American.

      • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:31 AM

        Joe, where were you in 314? My seats are in Row D. We probably saw each other last night!

        Agree on the chop. Nothing worse that drunk Braves fans doing it at the end of a game. Ugh.

      • sjm308 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:28 AM

        Seam – Kevin and I also waited at 104 (really nice usher by the way) & also wanted to be in our seats by first pitch. I think we hung around for about 10 min. but seats 16-20 remained empty.
        Really sorry not to actually meet Eric but I have a part of him now in my baseball card room and for right now it has a spot of honor (since its the newest addition).

        Many thanks to 222 for bringing the sticker up and many thanks to Eric for creating it. Dueces and I just looked at each other (probably pretty sad sight) and shrugged. It really did take the air out of things up in 308 and the next inning was even worse.

        You are correct that we did meet but remembering that I am old and forgetful I probably wouldn’t remember you as well. Hopefully, all of us will say hi in person in the next 5 or 6 months (actually hoping for 7 months)

        Go Nats!!

  10. exposedindc - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:45 AM

    Trade him ? Bench him ? Where were these comments when he was 4for 5 in NY ? Zimmerman is not the 1st defensive liability to play the game or the last.
    I am not buying sore shoulder either, when you consider how he handles slow rollers effectively. Zim is our 3rd baseman ( at least in 14 ) turn the page.

    • Joe Seamhead - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:59 AM

      It’s more than just the throws, exposedindc, he’s hurt.

      • Sonny G 10 - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:28 PM

        Yes, he’s definitely hurt and needs to get fixed, if that’s possible. This has got to be a nightmare for him.

  11. edshelton2013 - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:51 AM

    Here are some observations from the Barves announcers (MASN is blacked out where I live when we play them):

    –When Span and Harper fouled off bunt attempts early, they said both should have been called out for stepping out of the batter’s box (confirmed by replay). It’s in the rule book but rarely enforced.
    –They noted Strasburg’s new slider, which he threw often and got hit often. “Just because you have a new toy, it doesn’t mean you have to use it so much”.
    –They cited several Nats who perform much worse vs. the Barves than the rest of the league: Strasburg, Clip and Harper. I haven’t checked stats to confirm this.

    • knoxvillenat - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:53 AM

      Edshelton,

      I too am blacked out from MASN when we play the Barves and I can confirm those comments from last night. Also I recall from last season they did in fact put up a graphic to show how SS, Clip et all fared against their Barves vs the rest of the league. As if recall the difference was startling.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:44 AM

        They are correct on Strasburg. At some point, Strasburg has to adjust to them and today he did a great job until the error. It fell apart quickly.

  12. npb99 - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:57 AM

    Nats’ ownership is already talking about how the team salary is more than topped out. Wouldn’t be surprising if the $100M owed to RZ becomes an albatross for the organization. Hopefully Rizzo will not be tempted to give in to sentimentality and again overpay a good but not great offensive player.

  13. breakbad1 - Apr 6, 2014 at 8:59 AM

    Zimm has had mental problems with throwing for at least 6 years. Video of his warm ups would show that he has been experimenting with throwing, or trying to “find it” (LaRoche’s excellent and revealing phrase) every day, year-in and year-out, for a long time.

    More than his shoulder, this is the yips.

    In the Mets series, Zimm had a wild, wild throw, LaRoche made a valiant effort to get to it, and Rendon made an incredible, diving play to finally stop it. Both were looking for a wild throw–both men know that Zimm’s got this deep in his head and can’t get rid of it.

    Much has been made of the fact that these throws always come on routine plays. This is because, as has also been noted, that these are the plays when he has time to “think” about throwing. Doesn’t this prove it’s mental and not medical? I mean, if you had a broken arm but tried to throw without thinking, you still wouldn’t be able to do it, right?

    I have been surprised, over the years people have discussed this problem, how often first base is offered as a “solution.” How will he make the throw to second on a double-play–a throw which, although shorter than the throw from 3rd to 1st–has to be much more accurate? How will he throw to get a runner at third–a runner who is taking an extra base when Zimm is taking a cutoff throw, knowing that Zimm will be unable to put a throw on the bag at 3rd? How can Zimm throw home?

    I can say honestly, I have not seen Zimm throw the ball the same way twice in the last 5 years. EVERY throw is an experiment.

    Over the winter, in a little-discussed column, Boswell said that statistically, Zimm was the 4th-worst defensive player in all of baseball last year. All of baseball.

    This is a personal tragedy for him, an unfolding nightmare he cannot correct or control. I feel sorry for him. But he’s going to need to change his contract agreement to allow for a trade to an AL team to be a DH.

    For the first time in my life, I support the DH rule. At this point, I would support almost anything to help Ryan Zimmerman.

    • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:35 AM

      Excellent points.

      • nats128 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:54 AM

        I just wrote above this came up on Phil Woods postgame show last night. You are right. This isnt anything new. Its also worse than the stats because of his range got so bad.

    • Hiram Hover - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:23 AM

      I too wonder how much of it is mental and not physical. He’s clearly capable of making some throws. That Kilgore posting last night was prescient and on point. Maybe they’re saying in public that it’s physical because that’s easier–and perhaps easier to fix–than a problem in his head.

      BTW–about that Bos column–if folks at Natsinsider weren’t discussing it much, its because posters here had pointed out those defensive stats last year.

  14. micksback1 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:02 AM

    I actually am not that down at this point. I like Matt Williams and these 2 losses are not for a lack of effort, which is all i ask for as a diehard and an ex coach. If Zim is out for awhile, Rendon goes to 3rd and a new born Danny E goes to 2nd. Bryce needs to relax, plain and simple. Stras needs to still grow up Other than that, they will be fine

  15. micksback1 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:18 AM

    If Zim has been injured, what the hell has the nats brass been doing about it??? Again, perhaps the move to 1st would be good timing since Espi is back? maybe platoon ALR with Zim, what would be so bad about that? In fact, that allow ALR and ZIM to be rested.

  16. rmoore446 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:33 AM

    I was at the game (Sec 116, good seats on the third base side, row CC) and although I had a vest and a windbreaker, it was increasingly uncomfortable in the later innings. But more annoying were the well-lubricated Braves fans about three rows in front of me and a big group in Sec 115. The Zimmerman error got them going and for the rest of the game there were tomahawk chops, jeers and that fake Indian chant. I was born in Atlants, attended the first Atlanta Braves game in April 1966 and many after that for over three decades including the game (also in April) when Aaron hit 715.

    I know I shouldn’t judge all by a few dozen louts but, unfair or not, I had to wonder when did Braves fans become so obnoxious? I’ve attended other Braves-Nats games but none in the last 2 years (except ST games) and never noticed that sort of behavior. Maybe it reached this point when the true rivalry for the division began in 2012.

    I don’t mind fans cheering for their team. That’s their right and its part of any evening at the ballpark but the taunts, and jeers and shouting down nearby Nats fans just crossed a line for me. I hope they took the Metro home or had a designated driver.

    As a Nats fan, the game was disheartening. It began well with LaRoche’s homerun but the air went out of the stadium with Zimmerman’s error and then Strasburg’s troubles with every hit ball finding a gap. Several of the Nats hit hard line drives, including Harper and Espinosa, but right at fielders. Just one of those games. I did enjoy seeing Barrett pitch. And I thought the Espi error was on a very difficult play.

  17. Theophilus T.S. - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:41 AM

    Even allowing for the possibility Z’man is injured, this team is becoming as difficult to watch as last year’s. The list of stoopid mistakes has exploded over the last two days — not including the Eephus Throw to first. Strasburg has fallen love with his slider and curve and forgotten how to throw a FB; I didn’t see one clocked at over 94 yesterday. When he needed a strikeout he was resorting to sliders — a pitch he didn’t even throw before this season — breaking low and out of the zone. Is he injured too? Or is he just easily addled? The whole team is over-matched against the Braves, lacks the cajones to stand up to them, and goes paws up for another rookie pitcher. Of such is not a champion made.

    • stoatva - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:48 AM

      All the reporters on Twitter had Strasburg’s fastball at 97 during Hayward’s leadoff at-bat.

    • rmoore446 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:51 AM

      The stadium scoreboard had some of his pitches in the early innings at 96. How reliable that is, I have no idea.

  18. stoatva - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:45 AM

    Heartbroken for Zim, whom I’ve had the pleasure of meeting on a couple of occasions. But if he must go on the DL I vote for bringing up Zach Walters and his bat.

  19. natsfan reduxit - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:51 AM

    … okay so I’ll begin with this caveat: I don’t like hunting; I don’t like guns; I really don’t like Duck Dynasty. So when I say it’s time to allow Adam LaRoche to move on, I’m sure some will say it’s because I don’t like him.

    … that’s crazy; I don’t know him. What I do know is that Ryan Zimmerman is not going to do the team any favours by staying at third base. So if he’s going to move to first, that move should be done now. A. Rendon is qualified at third, and Danny E. is at second.

    … getting Ryan established at first a.s.a.p. seems like the best thing to my mind. Moving ALR now and letting him find a place to play would be a positive move for the Nats, no matter how many fans might disagree.

    Go Nats!!

    • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:56 AM

      See breakbad1′s comment above. If he can’t throw, he can’t play 1B either.

      • JW - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:08 AM

        He can throw. He makes the throws that require nothing but instinct perfectly almost every time. What he can’t do is make the kind of throws that require mechanics, footwork and setup. Fortunately the throws required from a first baseman are pretty much all instinct throws.

      • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:06 AM

        If you’re prepared to rely on that distinction, great. I’m not, and I don’t think Nats should either. There are no charging submarine throws for 1Bs. And, as breakbad noted, 3-6-3 requires pinpoint accuracy. There’s no ALR over there to dig a ball out of the dirt, or stretch way off the bag to hault in an errant toss. And if the throw is high and the SS has to jump to get it, he risks serious injury.

  20. nats128 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:55 AM

    As expected, RZ out of the lineup and Espi at 2nd and Rendon at 3rd. Get used to it.

  21. nats128 - Apr 6, 2014 at 9:58 AM

    RZ’s own words make anything he says going foward difficult to beleive.

    “Will you now admit that last year, even though you told us all – ‘arm’s money, arm’s money, arm’s silly’ – that it still wasn’t right?” Eric Bickel asked. “Yea,” Zimmerman muttered. “You were lying to us,” Bickel said.

    “I lie to you guys every day”

    How sad and he thought it was funny.

    • laddieblahblah - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:37 AM

      That is the first I heard that. I hope he did not lie to MW. If he did, my guess is that Matt isn’t laughing.

    • Hiram Hover - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:52 AM

      Yeah. I expect them to lie to the public. But not to managers, and esp not to the doctors.

  22. stoatva - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:00 AM

    this racist, stupid, chop crap in our house has got to stop.

    As much as I agree with you, some might suggest that the city of Washington does not have clean hands in this matter.

    • stoatva - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:01 AM

      Also, too, as with the Phillies Phans before them, the only way to shut ‘em up is to beat ‘em.

    • Steady Eddie - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:58 AM

      I’m not “the City of Washington” and neither are you.

      All we’re talking about here is people’s behavior right now, and the perspectives (or lack of them) animating that behavior. That has nothing to do with historical wrongs.

      • stoatva - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:40 AM

        Just to be clear… I yield to no one in my contempt for Dan Snyder. I was a fan of #washingonnflfranchise before Snyder was born, and over the last ten years his stewardship has pushed me beyond indifference towards antipathy.

        I am also strongly in favor of sportsmanlike behavior at sporting events and agree that Braves fans are rapidly becoming as boorish as the Phillies fans of yore (let us not forget that Atlanta’s is a fan base that has something of a predilection for falling out of their own stadium).

        I find the ‘tomahawk chop’ and the faux war chant as obnoxious and offensive as any of you.

        But I think I’m correct when I say that if Nats fans raised a stink about “the chop” the reaction nationwide would, understandably, be “Seriously? Tend to the nasty business in your own back yard first.”

        I’m pretty sure this is more bytes than this subject is worth because we agree about more than we disagree. The only way to stop it, as I’ve already said, is to beat the bums on the field.

    • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:10 AM

      The City of Washington isn’t holding on to the awful name for the city’s football team, Dan Snyder is.

      • Steady Eddie - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:14 AM

        Right, and in fact, the Landover/Raljon (remember that inanity from Cooke?) pro football team is not even in DC.

      • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:17 AM

        Also, I don’t go to football games, but I’m not aware that the City of Washington residents that do engage in any regular cheer or taunt that is demeaning to any racial or ethnic group. So to that extent, our hands are clean.

      • JW - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:46 AM

        Read the lyrics to HTTR sometime. Touchdown we want heap more.

      • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:48 AM

        Good point.

  23. unkyd59 - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:01 AM

    My in-game statement, yesterday, just before Esio came in:

    “Well… We’ve no reason to believe Zim has any arm/shoulder issues… Very sad to think it’s a head problem… How long before Rendon and Espi are playing everyday….?”

    I stand corrected. And that soft overhand throw looks to me just like someone whose shoulder is killing them, on the overhand throw. I hope it’s fixable, but it’s tough to be optimistic, at this point. Of course he’d have to throw the ball, at 1B, but not nearly as much as at 3B, and many of the throws could go underhand or sidearm, which doesn’t seem to give him ax much trouble. Just feeling horrible, for Zim…. Worse than I could ever feel about the performance of a baseball team… Praying, for his sake that there’s a way for him to finish out his carreer, HERE, productively. Love me some Ryan Zimmerman…

    • unkyd59 - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:02 AM

      Before Espi came in…(sheesh!)

  24. Candide - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:04 AM

    If Espi is really back – a big “if,” I know – then we could be doing a lot worse than an infield of Rendon, Desi, Espi, and LaRoche. You could argue that the defensive improvement would largely compensate for the loss of Zimm’s offense. I’m sure someone’s already calculated the OWARs vs. DWARs involved.

    Going to the game this afternoon, still wearing my rose-colored glasses.

    • Candide - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:14 AM

      But I really feel bad about and for Zimm, regardless of the cost/benefit of benching him.

  25. nats128 - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:05 AM

    For all the haters who scoth every time a position change is suggested, Frandsen is going to be playing the outfield over Hairston! Guy has never played outfield in the Majors.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:21 AM

      Yeah imagine that but Frandsen has I said before had dabbled in the outfield in 2010 This is what you do to get a bat in the game and lets face it, Frandsen has never been a gifted infielder but I thought people were telling me Rizzo doesn’t allow this.

      I’ve heard this over and over as over the years I’ve suggested how players can get in lineups like Morse, TyMo, Kobernus, Lombardozzi, Rendon, Espinosa, Walters, and so on.

      Yes TyMo plays outfield, Kobernus plays outfield, Lombo plays outfield, Rendon can play 2nd, Espinosa can play 2nd and 3rd, Walters can play 2nd and certainly can play LF.

      If you don’t find another position for a good player, they can’t get playing time. Every once in a while you learn about your player and they turn out much better in their new position.

      Just keep telling me I’m wrong, I heard it every day for 3 months on Rendon moving to 2nd base.

      • Joe Seamhead - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:51 AM

        Ghost, I have respect for what you bring to this blog and I never questioned you on Rendon, and have never heard of the Rizzo statement you mentioned but I disagree with you in that just because a guy is a crappy infielder doesn’t justify sticking him in the outfield..Depending on “Every once in a while” I working out is not the key to winning baseball. There are guys that have spent years mastering how to play the outfield in this organization. Regardless of what you say, it’s an art form in itself. And, no, Moore, Kobernus, and Lombardozzi CANNOT play a ML level outfield, even if you stick them out there.Two of them just don’t have the arm, and none of them get a good jump, nor do they run the right route to the ball. Think Josh Willingham. Sure, he’s played the OF for a long time, hits the ball, and has never played a decent outfield, in spite of all the coaching from at least four organizations.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:01 AM

        Joe, its a matter of finding places for these players on the lineup card and where they are serviceable. Lombo can play outfield if you want to get him reps. Where did he ever screw up? You would never want him there every day because his arm is weak but he did an admirable job considering he had no time to get serious reps.

      • Joe Seamhead - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:20 AM

        Steve, I’ll never agree with you on this. It wasn’t a matter of screwing up, but of simply not having the physical tools and/OCR the mental makeup to play the position.
        Like I said, Willingham is a classic example, as was Adam Dunn, Dave Kingman, Lucas Duda, and I can name dozens of others. You know what almost every one of them have in common other than that they can hit? They have few,if any, playoff appearances, because it is low percentage baseball to play lousy outfielders. It kills your pitchers. You get singles when there should have been outs, doubles that should’ve been singles, guys scoring that should have been stopped at third and ERA’s that skyrocket because of plays that don’t show up on stats sheets.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:33 AM

        Joe, we probably are on the same page because I don’t believe you weaken your team by playing hacks in any position. Pitching and defense first. TyMo can play some LF once in a while to keep him fresh and get him some work against LHPs.

        You have 5 guys on the bench of which 1 is your catcher. Those other 4 need playing time.

        Every once in a while a guy like Rendon surprises you with his ability at another position. Some position changes become permanent like Alfonso Soriano to LF.

        If Zach Walters can really hit, it would be a good idea to find a position that he can excel at defensively.

      • Joe Seamhead - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:35 AM

        And, Ghost, the only one that I ever remember vilifying you on moving Rendon to 2nd was peric. Please don’t don’t lump us all in with him.
        Last year you accused me of being a Desi Hater because I mentioned how few runs he drove in during the month of July. I wasn’t “hating” but I felt vilified for mentioning accurate stats.Every regular on here has had their share of being wrong and/or insensitive at least once!
        Anyway, let’s go Nats! I’m going to miss a bunch of today’s game to go watch my grandsons play baseball. One is catching and the other is playing first. I’m quite sure the Nats will play their best game all year.

  26. Candide - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:16 AM

    Chase Hughes ‏@chasehughesCSN 8m
    Looks like Tyler Moore is here and Hairston is not. #Nats

  27. Candide - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:19 AM

    Chase Hughes ‏@chasehughesCSN 2m
    Hairston’s locker is still full of his stuff, but he’s not on the lineup card. #Nats

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:25 AM

      Now this is interesting and confirmed that Hairston is off the roster. Either he is going to the DL or DFA’d.

      • Eric - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:35 AM

        Wow… Weird. I have a bad feeling this spells “extended DL” for Zim.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:37 AM

        Eric, we will see. Could be scar tissue. Imbsure he’s feeling something in there.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:39 AM

        Hairston going to the DL with an oblique strain. You can take it for whatever you think that means.

      • Eric - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:42 AM

        I agree.

        I keep having this weird random thought: arthritis. Not sure why.

        Whatever’s going on, I agree he’s feeling something and it’s not in his head (beyond fear of pain/reinjury, that is). I think those bang bang charging plays are a) shorter throws and b) inherently require the only throwing motion that doesn’t seem to bother Zim (at least not as much): submarine.

      • Eric - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:44 AM

        Ah, DL for Hairston gives me a little pause on my earlier guys about implications for Zim… For now… It certainly seems feasible that he’s come down with a mean case of “Haren’s shoulder”…

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:48 AM

        Eric, I will refrain from putting down my true thoughts. I was villified in 2010 before the ab injury became public for questioning the FoF. He’s Teflon.

      • Hiram Hover - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:53 AM

        Well, those folks who wanted TyMo–or anyone–over Hairston are getting their wish. And the Nats are still paying his salary.

      • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:15 AM

        Ghost, I’m glad you’re back. You’re a smart guy and have a lot of insight and inside info. But you’ve never been “vilified” here for anything. People are allowed to disagree with you here, and we don’t have to kiss your ring everything time you suggest something. Quit being such martyr and you’ll have more fun.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:23 AM

        You probably forget some of the comments Mark actually had to delete because they were so vile.

        People sometimes can’t handle the truth. Yogi as I said many times wasn’t kidding about the mental side of the game. If you think you have a shoulder problem, you are going to play like it.

      • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:29 AM

        Those deleted comments came from one particular poster who is now only occasionally with us with another moniker. And you were far from the only person to be the target of his poison pen. But somehow none of the rest of us took it as personally, or have the persecution complex, that you seem to have.

        I agree with you that part of Zim’s problem is mental. But his problem with overhand throws may also come from pain or fear of pain, due to the injury. It’s a sad situation all around. I’m sure the team knows more about it than they’ve been letting on, and in this case, that’s fine with me. Just get the man well, or figure out how to move on.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:35 AM

        Not just him it was Feelwood and his many names.

      • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:47 AM

        Good point. I took a lot of abuse from him too, maybe more from you since he doesn’t like my barbershop quartet. Just have to let it slide off your back, my friend.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:51 AM

        222, you sure did. I took heat from his fake names. The guy is a star on WaPo. LOL

      • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:55 AM

        He’s the self-appointed grammar scold. Kilgore’s typos are never safe. Made an appearance here as Jb for awhile but seems to have left us again.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:05 PM

        I thought it was amazing that Peric really did return under a new name. He has to be beaming that TyMo has returned.

        Look, TyMo is better than Hairston but a small upgrade and I will take it as he has more versatility and MW needs that. As I look at the Minor Leaguers I see a lot of players who project as solid bench players. Star potential is few and far between.

      • laddieblahblah - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:35 AM

        Right, again, Ghost. Hairston’s on the DL with an oblique strain.

  28. Another_Sam - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:24 AM

    Let’s remember that we’re talking about professional entertainment here.

    I’m sure Zimmerman’s throwing is due to an injury; otherwise he’d have a staff a shrinks following him around. As Mark indicated, all you have to do is watch him warming up, or even whipping the ball around the infield after a strikeout. He can’t throw at all. There’s no cosmic force involved here; it’s an athletic injury.

    And I’m with those above who feel he shouldn’t be in the lineup. He’s injured and he can’t help the team. [Maybe PH here and there.] If they were to come up on a team that had to win, they’d see bunt after bunt after bunt after . . .

    Today is another day. Play ball. I’m with ‘em. My team.

  29. Candide - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:41 AM

    Call it slackvism if you want, but I’m wearing my #11 jersey today.

    Can I get some “amens?”

    • Eric - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:45 AM

      Slackvism?

      Anyway, I applaud the gesture. Really feel bad for him.

      • Candide - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:49 AM

        Argghhh…SLACKTIVISM. It’s a real word, a portmanteau, if you will.

    • smatt1001 - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:46 AM

      I’m with you. Got the Zimm jersey on (even though I’ll be watching on MLB.tv today).

      Hope he gets this figured out, its crushing to see someone go from gold glove defense to this.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 10:51 AM

      I don’t think you turn your back on Ryan Zimmerman.

      • Joe Seamhead - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:09 AM

        I don’t think many, if any of us are turning our backs on Ryan Zimmerman, but at the same time we all see there is something wrong, and as such, this team won’t win enough games with him at 3rd base until whatever is wrong with him is righted.

    • Another_Sam - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:10 AM

      Nothing wrong with that. If he gets introduced or comes on the field at all, I’m cheering him.

    • Hiram Hover - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:20 AM

      Amen!

  30. Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:05 AM

    Do any of you all play video games? MLB The Show 14 is very realistic. It just got released on April 1 for PS3. I did my team as the Nats. 1st inning a grounder to Ryan Zimmerman. They have his exact throwing style and he throws the ball on a lollipop to LaRoche at 1st who has to stretch up to get the throw. At least they didn’t have the throw go into the stands.

  31. Another_Sam - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:07 AM

    Who’s in the park today? See you there.

    • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:21 AM

      Check out the NIDO spreadsheet:

      http://prettyfrickenbueno.wordpress.com/whos-going/

      And everyone who’s going should post their locations if they are so inclined. Misery loves company.

      • Candide - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:23 AM

        Going to the spreadsheet to tally a drink owed to you. BRB.

    • Candide - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:22 AM

      Section 219. Baseballswami will be there also, don’t know what section.

      Another_Sam, you need to get to the NIDO Spreadsheet where we keep track of drinks owed, who’s going, and a host of other things. Fill your name in on the “Who’s Going” page and you can enter all the games you plan to go to, as well as see who’s going to be at the park with you on any given day.

  32. Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:21 AM

    I want to see if the pitchers change their approach. I think we have all noticed that very few balls have been hit down to Ryan Zimmerman in the 1st 5 games. How do pitchers control where the ball is hit? Its hard to but they might throw more outside pitches on a RH batter rather than come inside and the opposite to a LH batter.

    On over the top throws in 5 games Ryan has had 5 and 2 of those are errors. He has an .818 fielding percentage and all of 11 total chances so far in 5 games.

    • laddieblahblah - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:42 AM

      And I wonder if Stras’ reaction was due to some prior knowledge of Zim’s problems. If the pitchers were already adjusting, then they also knew that the disaster would come, eventually, no matter what they did to avoid it. If that was so, then Stras must have felt doubly jinxed when it did happen, and happened to him, yet again.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:48 AM

        Laddie, That’s what I believe and good reading between the lines. The pitchers are a tight group. It’s like the defense and the offense in football. Clubhouse chemistry is one thing but these guys talk outside of work.

        Its back to trust but verify. Ryan looks worse than a year ago. On the Nats blog they said he has been bouncing balls in warmups and its the worse they have every seen.

        Now the pitchers can start using the whole plate. Lets see if more than 2.2 balls are fielded today by Rendon.

  33. philipd763 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:23 AM

    Never saw a promising season unravel so quickly. First, Fister, then Ramos and now Zimmerman. SI picking the Nationals to win the WS was the kiss of death.

  34. NatsNut - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:28 AM

    Those of you who froze last night, you now know rule #1 for games in April. Dress for 20 degrees lower than the forecast, then bring extra.

    • sjm308 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:35 AM

      agreed

    • Steady Eddie - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:22 PM

      Really. I brought about three thermal layers and the same for my 13-year old daughter (who fought bringing them, of course), and we were both freezing by the 6th inning.

      Per Kilgore, nominal temperature dipped into the low 40s and between the high (~70%) humidity and occasional winds off the river (worse on the concourse and upper levels), it was like a November pointy-ball game up north.

  35. vannordens - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:35 AM

    I’ll repeat what I said the first day of spring training when the nats had fielding practice. Zimm could not make a strong accurate throw to first base at any time. His sidearm throws to second for double plays were strong and accurate. I was really surprised when people generally considered that he was continuing the improvement that he had shown late last year. With his strong sidearm throwing, there may a place for him at second or first. We need his bat.

  36. sjm308 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:37 AM

    There will probably be a new post very soon but I wanted to get a couple of my thoughts in

    1. Watch Zimm throw in warmup and you still see that soft arching lob
    2. I watched Rendon during his first inning of warmup and he throws a straight line bullet – the comparison is not even close

    had more thoughts but my grandson just arrived so you guys carry on!

    • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:56 AM

      Rendon’s straight line bullets from 2B almost take ALR’s glove off sometimes.

  37. David Proctor - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:49 AM

    I’m amazed at the number of people ready to just shut Zim down for the year. Danny Espinosa, even if he is new and improved, is never and will never be Ryan Zimmerman with the bat. We need that bat in our lineup. If we have to take it out for injury so be it, but let’s not act like it’s some painless transition.

    Also, there are a lot of 1B who don’t like to throw. How often do you see a 3-6-3 double play anyway? Not that often. I’m not concerned about his potential throws from 1B.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:56 AM

      If Ryan is having pain it could be as simple as scar tissue. I wouldn’t suggest anything yet.

      • sjm308 - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:39 PM

        agree with that and while I am sad that his throwing is still an issue, I seriously do not want him shut down unless that is the prudent thing to do from a medical standpoint.

        He is just too important to our team

  38. NatsLady - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:53 AM

    Going to the game, but a couple of quick observations.

    (1) the “past a diving” was actually Rendon.

    (2) Much as I despise Ryan Braun, he said something about why can’t take a “normal” swing (he has a long-standing nerve injury in his thumb) that might apply to RZ: ” it’s like touching a hot stove. Much as you may want to keep your hand on the stove, your instinct takes over, and you can’t.” If Ryan is feeling that kind of pain when he tries to make an overhand throw, then you can see why he fails at it. Even if he doesn’t actually feel the pain on a given day, the memory of the pain could be overwhelmed. You can call that “mental” if you want. Today Ryan said his shoulder felt worse than it has since the surgery. The surgery was a long time ago (November of 2012 if I recall). So, a year and a half later, it has not improved, or at least it’s inconsistent.

    • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:08 PM

      Enjoy the game.

      Zim didn’t leave the game until Espi PH’d for Stras in the bottom of the 5th. Uggla’s hit was past a diving Zim, and check out the replay for how shallow he was playing. Against a dead pull hitter, I doubt the defensive positioning coach made that call.

      http://m.mlb.com/video/v31856531/atlwsh-uggla-singles-home-two-runs/?c_id=mlb

      • David Proctor - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:20 PM

        Yes, you’re right. And FP was spewing some garbage about Ryan playing in for a bunt. Against Dan Uggla? Really? With the bases loaded?

        Comical.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:30 PM

        FP is no idiot but he tries to make the players look good and that sometimes takes place of smart analysis.

      • JW - Apr 6, 2014 at 1:14 PM

        The infield was in on that play. Look at where Desi was when he took off after the ball.

    • Joe Seamhead - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:10 PM

      There was one past each of them.

      • Section 222 - Apr 6, 2014 at 1:11 PM

        The past a diving Rendon hit was the double down the line in the 7th inning. Det got out of that jam. Uggla’s past a diving Zim hit was the biggest play of the game. It brought in two runs and gave the Braves the lead. Of course, who knows where Zim would have thrown the ball if he had succeeded in fielding it.

    • sjm308 - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:41 PM

      NL, I thought so at first when I read “past a diving Ziom” but I went back and checked my scorebook and that inning where they got the 4 hits in a row (With SS messing around with off speed pitches to each batter) it was still Ryan.

  39. thenatom - Apr 6, 2014 at 11:57 AM

    Feel so bad for the guy :( Still believe he can get back to making plays like these, even if they happen at first not third http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f7fsh0BM_NI

  40. natsguy - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:00 PM

    I said it last year and got kicked around like the proverbial can. Shoulders do not heal all the way for normal people. For athletes the road back is even farther. While you guys are noticing the throwing, I gurantee that is also causing big problems with his hitting right hand pitchers on outside pitches. He can still hit lefties pretty well but righties are going to be an issue for him the rest of his career. He survived last year by playing in until everybody noticed he was cheating up and started taking advantage.

    Putting him at 1st base is not exactly a great solution either. He still has to throw just not as often.

    Hopefully there is a medical solution but I am doubtful. I have one of those “bad shoulders”. Torn Labrum and rotator cuff. I have gone from having a great arm in college to barely being able to throw a balled up sock across the room without pain.

    • Eric - Apr 6, 2014 at 12:46 PM

      “He survived last year by playing in until everybody noticed he was cheating up and started taking advantage.”

      Was this before or after he tore the cover off the ball throughout September?

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