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Nats lineup comes together, comes through

Jul 1, 2014, 12:24 AM EDT

Photo by USA Today Photo by USA Today

It had been 80 games since the Nationals last had their full lineup together and healthy, the group Mike Rizzo assembled for this season before injuries struck almost immediately on Opening Day. Half a season where the Nats patched together lineup cards just hoping to stay afloat in the NL East.

On Monday, Bryce Harper returned as the final piece, and the results were a dramatic reminder of what they are capable of. Washington topped the Rockies 7-3, including a five-run outburst in the sixth inning. All eight Nats position players reached base and five of them batted runs in.

Top to bottom, the Nationals looked once again like the team many predicted to go deep into October before the season began.

“It’s a strong lineup. I don’t think there’s too many opposing pitchers out there that want to see it,” Ian Desmond said. “It was nice to have Bryce back. He brings a lot of energy to our team when he plays this way.”

“I think having such a deep lineup is huge,” Harper said. “One through eight, pick your poison because you’re gonna get a guy that can hit the ball out of the ballpark or hit a double.”

Sure, the Nationals were playing the Rockies, owners of the worst pitching staff in baseball and, at 8-20, the worst record in the month of June. And, sure, it was only one game. But on the rare day the Nationals can field their lineup as it was drawn up to be, it may not matter who the opponent is.

Harper chipped in with an RBI single, a walk and a run in his first game back since April 25 to help provide a spark. Ryan Zimmerman had three hits, including two doubles and an RBI. Adam LaRoche hit a towering solo shot to the upper deck in right field in the seventh inning, his 12th home run of the season.

Desmond, though, was the true standout with a bases clearing double in the bottom of the sixth. With Jayson Werth on third and Zimmerman on second, Rockies pitcher Rob Scahill intentionally walked Harper to load the bases with one out before Desmond stepped to the plate. Little did he know, Desmond was 5-for-5 with the bases loaded this season prior to Monday night.

Desmond took the first pitch from Scahill down the left field line, scoring three runs and giving the Nats a four-run lead. Rockies manager Walt Weiss gambled to face Desmond and lost, a perfect example of the problems the Nats’ lineup can propose.

“That’s the kind of decision-making and pressure we want to apply,” Williams said.

“Bryce is a very good hitter. He’d come through earlier in the game against a lefty for a base hit and an RBI. Those are the decisions that you have to make in that regard. Again, it takes Desi putting a good swing on it. When it works like that, it’s great for us. With that length in the lineup, then we have opportunity to do that sometimes.”

  1. joemktg - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:04 AM

    How do you go into a game, especially later in the season, without this lineup? The throws across the diamond from 3rd will be an adventure, but it’s a net positive vs. a stronger defensive infield. Just have to live with Zim dropping his release below his shoulder and hope Werth can make it over there in time for any errant throws.

  2. laddieblahblah - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:05 AM

    “Ian Desmond said. ‘It was nice to have Bryce back. He brings a lot of energy to our team when he plays this way.’”

    For those who still do not understand that there is a large psychological component to the game, you don’t have to take it from me. If you’ve got a pulse, you probably felt it yourself, last night.

    It’s why Eisenhower sent Patton to relieve Bastogne and salvage Overlord – he needed a warrior, and the only one he had that the Germans really feared was Patton.

    Harper is the de facto leader of the Nats on the field, even though he is still only 21. They have many very gifted athletes, Zim, Rendon, Desi, Werth, ALR, JZ. and many others, but there is only one Patton on that team. Outside of the immediate DC area, he is already the new FoF. You can tell just by the way they boo him in Atlanta and Philly, and by how they cover the Nats on MLB network.

    Maybe the most memorable play in Cole Hamels’ entire career is what Bryce did to him after Hamels plunked him the first time he saw him. BTW, Bryce slid feet first into home on that play. That play may be the single most memorable in Hamels’ career, but Bryce will surpass it many times over before he hangs them up.

    For crying out loud, stay healthy Mr. Harper. The team would deflate faster than the Hindenburg if he got hurt, again.

    • Hiram Hover - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:35 AM

      It’s why it wasn’t over when Germany bombed Pearl Harbor!

      • dcwx61 - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:37 AM

        or Japan…London

      • snerdblurter - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:16 AM

        Forget it, he’s rolling…

    • NatsLady - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:16 AM

      Agreed. There was some electricity in the park tonight.

      Now, NO letdown! I’m looking at you, Mr. Strasburg.

      Stras needs to come through his rough patch on a night when it will be hot and humid and with a “chancy” third baseman. It would be great if the offense could score early and give him a cushion.

    • unkyd59 - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:16 AM

      Great analogy, Laddie… And if you haven’t read the Carlo D’Este book on Patton, I highly recommend it… I think it’s called “A Genius For War”

      • laddieblahblah - Jul 1, 2014 at 11:11 AM

        Thanks, I’ll put it on my list.

  3. natsjackinfl - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:16 AM

    Finally, the Nats have a complete game played by the starting 8 as determined in ST. Now let’s see if they can make it through a second game healthy.

    Not much to complain about in last night’s game. GYFNG!

  4. Joe Seamhead - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:17 AM

    When they walked Harper to get to Desmond the crowd started yelling, “Desi! Desi! Desi!” I was so thrilled for him to get that huge hit. And, yes, though he has had many a key hit in that situation when the batter before him has gotten an IBB, he has been in a funk at the plate. But having the bases loaded and Ramos behind him, they couldn’t throw him the junk out of the zone that has so often been the case from the rest of the league. The pitch he hit for the bases clearing double was a curve right over the plate.

    • snerdblurter - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:17 AM

      +1

    • Section 222 - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:33 AM

      +1. Right before the hit, I was joking with the guy next to me, (who by the way used to comment here as navynatsfan, that it would be cool to see Zim and Harper high five each other at home with their Zimmermitts. I said that a grand slam would do it, or even a bases clearing double. Next pitch to Desi: boom!

      Unfortunately since Zim wears his Zimmermitt on his right hand and Harper wears his on his left, such a high five is difficult to pull off. Zim held up his Zimmermitt for the high five at the plate, but Harper went by and used his right hand.

      Still, pretty cool.

  5. NatsLady - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:26 AM

    Carp (and FP) kept talking about how the Rockies “can hit.” Well, on the road, not so much.

    In 43 away games this season, the Colorado Rockies are hitting just .245/.296/.392.

    • natsbro - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:05 AM

      I mean that’s 5th in the NL…not bad…

      • natsbro - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:07 AM

        Oops make that 7th in the NL..so getting towards average haha

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:12 AM

      How’s about FP carping about Tulo’s BA wouldn’t change with a 1 for 3 night because he has a .350 BA and over 250 at-bats.

      He thought that was so cool.

      • adcwonk - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:19 AM

        Yeah, what an idiot. Just because his BA rounded to .353 both before an after the game doesn’t mean his average didn’t drop.

        A great point would have been: “look how high is BA is — he goes 1-for-3 and his BA goes down!”

        (FWIW, his BA went down from .3529 to .3527 — it didn’t “stay the same”)

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:36 AM

        Of course adcwonk. I was hoping the children listening were only thinking in terms of 3 decimal places.

        Try a 1-3 for 3 straight games and like magic it changes! Hah!

    • dcwx61 - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:39 AM

      better than the nats without harper (From April 25-June 29)

  6. Joe Seamhead - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:29 AM

    And as happy as I was for Desi, I was just as much so for Ryan Zimmerman. The catch, and yes, the throw to double up the runner maybe wasn’t a thing of beauty to some people, but I raised my beer in appreciation for a fine play.

    • originalnatsfan - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:34 AM

      Zim’s play made MLB network’s top plays this morning

    • realdealnats - Jul 1, 2014 at 2:14 PM

      +1

  7. NatsNut - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:34 AM

    Dont forget desi’s 3B steal and hustle home on that infield grounder with rockies infielders in. Best, best, BEST in-your-face for walking harper.

    • rayvil01 - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:50 AM

      Agreed. Small Ball is going to be a key. Errors are down. Stolen Bases against are down. Unearned runs are way down. All good signs.

  8. Doc - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:35 AM

    Now that we have the Buffalo’s great bat in the lineup, time to practice him on tagging runners out at home.

    Also, blocking balls to his right is still a bit of a challenge.

    With a little practice he should be able to do both.

    • adcwonk - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:19 AM

      Now that we have the Buffalo’s great bat in the lineup, time to practice him on tagging runners out at home.

      Or, rather: catching it on a short hop

  9. Joe Seamhead - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:47 AM

    On Joe West calling Aaron Barrett for the balk. Barrett has a weird way of doing this double set on virtually every pitch, and I have thought that it could be called a balk at any time. When West called it Ramos knew he would call him on it again, so he called for the bench to come out. After the game Matt Williams said that. he told Joe that it was the kid’s natural motion, but West said he’d call him on it if he did it again, so Barrett had to make the adjustment mid-inning. Though Joe West is famous for making the game about Joe West, I think on a purely technical basis, Barrett balks on virtually every pitch. The Nats may need to get an interpretation from Joe Torre, otherwise the call could be made against Aaron in a much worse situation.

    • Hiram Hover - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:00 AM

      I had never noticed it before – but once he called the balk and they did the replay, I was surprised that I could have missed it.

    • tcostant - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:45 AM

      Phil Wood said on post game radio that the issue was that Barrett didn’t do that “double set” every time, so West rightly called it a balk.

      • Joe Seamhead - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:55 AM

        Phil Wood also said that ALR probably won’t be the Nats rep at the All-Star game, and never mentioned Soriano when discussing what pitchers might be chosen.

      • Section 222 - Jul 1, 2014 at 11:04 AM

        Phil Wood is an idiot.

    • kirbs3256 - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:47 AM

      I’m hoping for the day the call Walden for a balk with him jumping of the rubber. But i think that happens so fast there is no way you can call it.

      • therealjohnc - Jul 1, 2014 at 11:24 AM

        First and third base umpires should be able to see it and call it – he’s clearly not in contact with the rubber at release – but they don’t. Because hey, you know, Braves.

  10. rayvil01 - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:54 AM

    I won’t argue. But they let that guy from the Braves (Waldron?) Pitch with his foot off of the rubber. I call him “Hop, Skip, and Jump.” That’s patently illegal. ..but they let it go.

    Probably best if Barrett changes his move.

    • masterfishkeeper - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:10 AM

      Interesting. I noticed the same thing. Waldren hops on every pitch.

    • natsjackinfl - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:14 AM

      +1. I noticed that little double set Barrett goes through and am surprised that West didn’t warn him after noticing how he did that with no one on base at the outset.

      But then again, we’re talking about Joe West.

  11. Another_Sam - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:08 AM

    Probaly many have thought or said (or both) this sentiment, but I’ll restate the obvious – its easy for me to forget how good BH really is and how he plays at a level all his own, and how he makes everyone in the lineup ratchet his game up, just by his presence. And yet some still want to turn him into a utility player. Go figure.

    • natsjackinfl - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:16 AM

      Saw your tweet on that Sam, and I agree.

    • Section 222 - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:28 AM

      Make him a utility player in order to keep Danny the K in the lineup, no less. Truly a bizarre notion.

  12. natsbro - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:15 AM

    I love Bryce and what he brings to the game…keep bringing that intensity! And please shut up to the media..it blows my mind he thought it was OK to say how he’d change the line up in the first place…if he knew it wasn’t OK and did it anyways..well that’s a different story. Also someone get a helmet that fits him. He throws it off at this point just for the theatrics…as it comes off every time he runs. It’s all fun and game until he takes a cleat to the head sliding in a bag. Time to start maturing and becoming a future leader of this team.

    Loved the line up last night, it was a great game to watch as a Nats fan. Lets keep it going boys!

    • Hiram Hover - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:22 AM

      Also someone get a helmet that fits him.

      Or a chin strap.

      • natsbro - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:30 AM

        Haha..it’s silly though isn’t it? Maybe on extra base hits he just doesn’t like running with it or thinks it slows him down…idk..

      • natsjackinfl - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:34 AM

        Oscar Wilde has a great quote that applies to Bryce, among others.

        “In America, the young are always ready to give those who are older than themselves, the full benefit of their inexperience. “

      • Joe Seamhead - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:18 AM

        Well, hopefully his head certainly can’t grow any bigger….

    • Another_Sam - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:04 AM

      Natsbro – future leader? The future is now; he just doesn’t quite have the media interview figured out. BTW Matt could use a few sessions with a media consultant too. Lol. Hire Desmond’s guy. Haha.

      Baseball interview prime directive: stick with the cliches.

      Another topic: if a runner on second or third looks across the diamond and sees BH on a base behind him, he’s gotta be thinking to be particularly alert . . . Haha.

      Play ball!

  13. Section 222 - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:26 AM

    Jordan Walden. His motion is ridiculous. But it’s not really deceptive to the runner on first. Barrett’s is deceptive. I have no idea how people have let him develop a “regular motion” like that. It was bound to come back and haunt him.

  14. scnatsfan - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:44 AM

    Here is what I do if I’m Rizzo…you tell Espi you are sending him to the minors to bat right handed all the time, that he isn’t a MLB player hitting left handed but can be an all star hitting from the right. MLB isn’t the place to learn how to hit. Send him to SYR for a couple months, let him hit right handed all the time, bring him back. If an injury happens you can bring him up sooner. If needed Walters can play SS for the 2 games Desi will need to rest. Next year you have Espi as yr starting 2B but not giving away so many outs as this approach from the left side is horrid. You make it clear to him that this is what he needs to do to be an elite MLB 2B, something he is not right now.

  15. Joe Seamhead - Jul 1, 2014 at 8:51 AM

    I’m “sure” every little thing is just alright between them, but this appears to be an awkward moment between Harper and Span:

    http://www.natsenquirer.com/2014/06/bryce-harper-and-denard-span-exchange-awkward-postgame-high-five.html

    • Joe Seamhead - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:08 AM

      It really appears that Bryce purposefully ignored Denard’s mitt and went over him to high five Jayson Werth. It was pretty high school-ish behavior.

      • natsbro - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:20 AM

        I’d like to not look into it too much..but it does kind of look like he did it on purpose..looks like Span says something afterwards too.

      • rayvil01 - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:27 AM

        Oh my. I hate drama. Hope that was just sloppiness…not a message.

      • adcwonk - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:28 AM

        It does appear that way — it’s *possible* that he was just trying to get both gloves in one swipe, I sure hope so, but it might have been a snub. (If so, that makes me sick).

        Interesting factoid: When Bryce was playing for AA-Harrisburg last week, he was still the youngest player on the entire team. If it was a snub, I hope it was just him being immature and that Werth slaps some sense into him.

      • Joe Seamhead - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:42 AM

        I have stuck up for young master Harper since the 1st time i briefly met him at his first Nats Fest, before he had ever played a game. And you could “possibly” think that the mitt thing was a missed swipe, IF it wasn’t for the pre-game comments. With those two antics last night, Harper is quickly moving onto the proverbial not-so-complimentary list with me.

      • natsfan1a - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:09 AM

        hmmm…that doesn’t look good. Hope it wasn’t deliberate. If so, as Tony Soprano once said, nip it in the bud. :-)

    • Hiram Hover - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:35 AM

      I missed Bryce’s play. I did not miss the drama.

      • snerdblurter - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:20 AM

        Seems like he tried to make up for 2 months of lost drama all in one night…

  16. #4 - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:10 AM

    A couple of random thoughts. I seem to remember a Bill James essay about players who perform well in bases loaded situations and those that don’t. I seem to recall his thesis that players who do not draw a lot of walks tend to be more successful than those who are patient. His idea was that pitchers have to be aggressive in those situations since they have no open base; therefore, an aggressive hitter is more likely to get a pitch out over the plate early in the count. That would seem to bear true with Desi, I would add I seem to recall Jayson Werth does not have good stats in that situation which would prove the thesis as well.

    On the psychological aspect of the game, I would point out that Denard Span has always stuck me as a guy who does not mix easily into a new group and feels a bit socially distant from the rest of the team. More than anyone, he would be impacted by Harper’s idiotic pre-game comments. Others may have blown them off more easily. I think we may see him go into a bit of a funk at the plate.

  17. knoxvillenat - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:26 AM

    Speaking of balks and non balks, what happened in the AB where the Rockies batter requested time and stepped out of the box just as Zimm was starting his motion toward the plate? There was a runner on second at the time and I did not see Joe West grant a time out there. Zimm stopped his move toward the plate and nothing was called. No balk, although FP & Carp certainly thought one could have or should have been called. Was there any discussion about it afterwards?

    • Joe Seamhead - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:28 AM

      I thought Joe West gave the batter a bit of a lecture about stepping out when Joe hadn’t granted him time.

    • Hiram Hover - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:31 AM

      I thought FP and Carp discussed the rule – that a batter cannot cause a balk. This appears to be derived from an official gloss in the MLB rules:

      Umpires should bear in mind that the purpose of the balk rule is to prevent the pitcher from deliberately deceiving the base runner. If there is doubt in the umpire’s mind, the “intent” of the pitcher should govern.

    • adcwonk - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:31 AM

      FP & Carp said it was definitely a balk. Then they apparently got some info between innings, because after coming back from the commercial, they noted that a balk is not called if the batter is the one who initiates the events, and that, therefore, West made the correct no-balk call.

      And so I guess the logic is: since the batter had stepped out first, even though time had not been called, a balk is not called on the pitcher.

      • adcwonk - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:32 AM

        HH — I owe you one! ;-)

      • Hiram Hover - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:34 AM

        Great minds, doing what they do….

      • Another_Sam - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:00 AM

        At first I didn’t like FP. Then he grew on me. Now he’s wearing thin. What are you guys’ thoughts on this?

      • scbilly - Jul 1, 2014 at 12:08 PM

        I like him. As somebody who couldn’t break out of the minors in Little League, I like the way he paints a picture of what it feels like for somebody trying to play the game “at the highest level” without overwhelming physical talent. I wouldn’t miss it if he cut back on the attempted humor about 50%, though.

  18. natsbro - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:29 AM

    In other news Dan Haren last night for the Dodgers:

    7.0 IP 1 Hit 1 Walk 5 SO’s and a 3.57 ERA on the season. Good for him.

    • masterfishkeeper - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:41 AM

      It was Haren’s first good start in a long time. He had dropped essentially to replacement level in both bWAR and fWAR. I don’t bear him ill will, but since he pitches for the Dodgers I’m rooting for him to lose every game.

  19. adcwonk - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:36 AM

    Also in other news:

    Last night, at AAA:

    Sandy Leon hit a walkoff home run in the 11th off Luis Ayala, and Tyler Moore went 3 for 5 with a home run.

    Sometimes there is a big difference between AAA and “the show”

    • scnatsfan - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:01 AM

      Isn’t that the truth

  20. natsbro - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:39 AM

    Oh no look at the front page of ESPN MLB:

    http://espn.go.com/mlb/

      • natsbro - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:50 AM

        Yeah I saw that..But Boz just hates Bryce to begin with..that article seems very slanted towards not liking him. Has he been lobbying for weeks to play center? Thats news to me..but Boz states it in there…

      • Faraz Shaikh - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:53 AM

        I remember Bryce said that before, that he would prefer to return as a CF. Sometimes he needs to keep his mouth shut. Just say, ‘it is not in my job description. wherever the skip plays me and hits me, I will com prepared.’ If you are Span, wouldn’t you be ticked off that your teammate thinks you are a bench player?

      • Another_Sam - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:01 AM

        RZ has been expressing some thoughts on what the lineup should be — a bit more subtly, I grant you — and no one seems to mention it.

      • Faraz Shaikh - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:04 AM

        as far as I am aware, RZ has said he would prefer to play LF. He doesn’t dictate what positions should be played by Harper, Rendon, Espinosa, etc. I get that his preference implies the same lineup that Harper is talking about but RZ knows his place and so should Harper.

      • natsbro - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:11 AM

        Bryce take notes:

        “The manner in which Zimmerman has dealt with this entire situation hasn’t been lost on teammates.

        “He says it all the time: The window for opportunity here to win the World Series is not going to be open forever,” Desmond said. “And his willingness, and everybody else’s willingness, to move throughout the lineup and to play different positions, that’s the kind of selflessness we need to get to the next level.””

      • bowdenball - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:25 AM

        Strange that people are chastising Harper but for the most part giving Boswell a pass. That was a truly horrible column. His anti-Harper agenda has been clear for a long time, but it’s never been so transparent.

        Harper didn’t handle things perfectly, but all he did was speak honestly to the media instead of hiding behind cliches. He’s hardly the first Nats player to lobby for a position or a spot in the batting order: Zimmerman, despite the contrast drawn by Boswell, made it known to anyone who would listen that he prefers LF to 3B. Werth has commented several times on his spot in the batting order during his time in DC.

        It’s sad to see a great writer like Boswell lose his mind and his credibility based on his personal feelings about Harper. My guess is that the 21 year old Harper will respond by being the better and more mature man than the 66 year old Boswell.

      • scbilly - Jul 1, 2014 at 12:18 PM

        Boswell on BH from his chat today:

        “Big talent. Good person. Youthful enthusiasm. But absolutely loves attention; so did Babe Ruth and Reggie Jackson. Not comparing their careers, just their comfort in, and love of the limelight. Of course, they also attracted controversies.”

        ” … Because MLB is such a brutal grind, ballplayers aree extremely aware of who is in the lineup and who isn’t. They don’t BLAME teammates for getting injured, but there is certainly a code that if you have not been able to pull your weight, and grind out all the miserable exhausting games, then you shouldn’t have too much to say, even if you’re a star. Harper had missed 97 of the Nats previous 193 games — just more than half. Not the time to help the manager and lobby to play a position held by another player. … he is VERY likeable in person. And a magnetic personality on the field. You just want him to figure a few things out. ”

        Doesn’t sound like he hates him, but he thinks he’s more to say than is good for him or the team lately. Can you really argue with that?

    • adcwonk - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:59 AM

      Ughh. Well, BH earned that one.

      Again, I hope Werth slaps some sense into him.

      And Werth, or BH’s agent, or BH’s dad, might want to point out that RZ, who’s been here since (almost) day one, has continually said: “I’ll play wherever it is that will help the team.”

      • Faraz Shaikh - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:02 AM

        exactly! RZ has a preference, that’s all. He doesn’t say that I should play LF and what positions should be played by others. Someone said yesterday that harper and williams don’t see eye to eye. I am kinda buying into that.

      • Faraz Shaikh - Jul 1, 2014 at 10:04 AM

        well at least he is not throwing bats at opposing pitchers or 3B.

  21. adcwonk - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:53 AM

    The One-Hit Wonder Padres

    Padres finished with a team BA of .171 in June. That is, truly, and incredibly, pathetic.

    But, also, in June, they one two different ballgames in which they had only one hit.

    Last night, the hit didn’t even have anything to do with the one run they scored in their 1-0 victory. (The run they got was on a walk, a steal, and two sac flies.)

    On June 4th their sole hit was a bunt single in the first — and they went on to win 3-2.

    • 6ID20 - Jul 1, 2014 at 11:24 AM

      Two sac flies to score one run? Not possible. A sac fly, unlike a sac bunt, is only awarded when a run scores.

      • adcwonk - Jul 1, 2014 at 7:04 PM

        Hmm. OK.

        What I meant was: he advanced from 3d to third on a fly, and then scored on another fly.

  22. micksback1 - Jul 1, 2014 at 9:55 AM

    That was a solid game last night, a few mistakes but overall, well played by the Nats. would have been a perfect evening if the Mets d d not lose the 3-1 lead they had in the 8th, they simply suck so I guess I should not count on them to win a game in atlanta, besides, its too early to scoreboard watch. I knew Nats would pound the ball last night as they should tonight. This is a game Stras really has to re=establish himself , if he bombs tonight then there is either and injury or he simply is what he is and that me be a very over rated pitcher. I am still not sold on him being the ace of this team.

    • letswin3 - Jul 1, 2014 at 12:53 PM

      Wow, Mick. You almost completed a post without going negative. It all sounded so positive about a good game and pounding the ball, but your need for negativity rebounded just in time to scorch Stras.

      • micksback1 - Jul 1, 2014 at 3:15 PM

        oh well, if he was not scheduled to throw tonight, the post would have been 100% positive

        lol

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