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Game 85: Cubs at Nats

Jul 4, 2014, 9:20 AM EDT

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It’s Independence Day in Washington, which means three things: 1) Fireworks on the National Mall tonight, 2) the Nationals hosting a ballgame at 11:05 a.m. and 3) Terrible heat and humidity for both events. Er, actually, strike that last one, because it’s an unseasonably cool, dry and windy July 4 for a change. No complaints here.

No complaints from Bryce Harper today, either, I would imagine, because he’s been moved up to the No. 2 spot in the Nationals’ lineup for the first time since coming off the DL. That pushes Anthony Rendon down to the 6-hole. Everything else stays the same against Cubs right-hander Jason Hammel. Tanner Roark gets the early start for the Nats, seeking what would be his team-leading eighth win.

I’m off today and tomorrow, and Chase is on vacation all week, but never fear. The talented Ben Standig has complete coverage from Nationals Park both days for CSNwashington.com, so be sure to head over there before and after the game. Happy 4th of July, everyone!

CHICAGO CUBS at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 11:05 a.m. EDT
TV: MASN, Ch. 9, MLB.tv
Radio: 106.7 FM, 1500 AM, XM 183, MLB.com
Weather: Partly cloudy, 76 degrees, Wind 18 mph LF to RF

NATIONALS (46-38)
CF Denard Span
LF Bryce Harper
RF Jayson Werth
1B Adam LaRoche
3B Ryan Zimmerman
2B Anthony Rendon
SS Ian Desmond
C Wilson Ramos
RHP Tanner Roark

CUBS (37-46)
LF Chris Coghlan
CF Justin Ruggiano
1B Anthony Rizzo
SS Starlin Castro
3B Luis Valbuena
RF Nate Schierholtz
C John Baker
2B Darwin Barney
RHP Jason Hammel

UMPIRES
HP Ted Barrett (cc)
1B Will Little
2B Mike Everitt
3B Paul Schrieber

286 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. NatsLady - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:21 AM

    Thanks for your work, Mark, and enjoy the holiday!

  2. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:25 AM

    Stacking lefties! Span & Harp together at the top of the lineup. I never mind it early in the game against the starter rather later in the game if the opponent has a dominant lefty in the ‘pen as this lineup is L-L-R-L

    • Faraz Shaikh - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:43 AM

      Let’s hope we put the game away for good before it comes to that.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:47 AM

        That’s the thinking behind that Faraz. I like putting the pressure on early and often.

    • David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:45 AM

      Span has no platoon split this year or in his career, so it really doesn’t matter if they LOOGY him. 2013 he didn’t hit lefties, but that was an aberration.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:01 AM

        Span’s issue has really been against the good lefty pitchers with a changeup. .195 vs .299 against a righty throwing the changeup.

        His other splits have been about equal but still hits right-handed relievers slightly better and with more power.

  3. Doc - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:27 AM

    Happy 4th MarkMeister!

    Glad Arthur appears to have kept his bad weather off-shore!

    Let’s play ball! The Cubbies must be feeling confident after beating the Red Sox.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:35 AM

      How’s your DC weather looking Doc?

      • Doc - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:16 AM

        Wish I was in DC, Ghost.

        Stuck here in ‘Indinapolis’!

        Weather here is great.

        Gooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo Naaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaats

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:35 AM

        I have an early morning 65 and sunny in LA (almost feels like San Diego). Now that I got the pre-game on, I see over Ray’s shoulder that it looks hot and humid and sunny in DC!

        I had read that there was serious rain in DC. That must have blown North. I see the Red Sox already cancelled today.

  4. Section 222 - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:39 AM

    Not wild about moving Rendon, plus you have 2 lefties at the top of the order, but no big harm in trying I guess.

    Happy 4th to all.

    • stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:08 AM

      You can do that with Desmond and Ramos behind him rather than Espinosa and Lobaton. Might as well try something differerent against Hammel, since nothing else has ever worked for the Nats. I’ve been pretty free with my criticism of MW so I’ll give him props in advance for giving this lineup a shot. I like it.

    • jd - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:34 AM

      If you swap Span and Rendon you get the best possible lineup we can use IMO.

      • stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:46 AM

        I don’t necessarily disagree. Baby steps, right?

    • Eugene in Oregon - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:26 AM

      Our local paper has an AP story projecting this year’s All-Star teams (based on accomplishments, not fan votes) and it includes Anthony Rendon as the back-up NL third-baseman. It also includes Adam LaRoche and Rafael Soriano on the NL team. Interesting — but not surprising, as these things go — that the team that leads the NL in ERA would only get one pitcher (and a relief pitcher, at that — taking nothing away from Mr. Soriano) on the staff.

  5. natsfan1a - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:17 AM

    Enjoy your off day, Mark and Chase.

    Um, so, Ben. You know how we’d said that Mark usually buys us all ice cream after wins? Well, we forgot to mention that he also buys it for us on holidays, win or lose. I like chocolate but I could make do with vanilla in a pinch.

    Oh, yeah. On topic, go Ro-ark! Go, NATS!! Won’t be at the ballpark but will be watching on tv.

    • Eugene in Oregon - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:28 AM

      I thought he bought us beers? Even if it’s 11 a.m. in DC (and 8 a.m. on the West Coast) it’s 5 o’clock somewhere*!

      * As Jimmy Buffett would say.

      • scmargenau - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:22 AM

        Alan Jackson :-)

  6. natsfan1a - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:19 AM

    (Er, after rereading, enjoy your *days* off, Mark and Chase.)

  7. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:46 AM

    Asked about Williams’ assertion that he was strong at the start and up in the zone, then a little more able to command his pitches down in the strike zone when he tired, Fister politely disagreed.

    “I don’t think it was too strong,” the right-hander said, “it’s just more of a timing thing. I wasn’t letting my arm catch up. Getting a little quick. I don’t want to say it’s mechanical, it’s just a mental adjustment that I need to go back out there and get it done.”

    I took this off of Federal Baseball regarding Fister. I made the same comment during the game as Matt Williams made after the game. My theory was the extra day of rest sometimes is a detriment to a pitcher that relies on movement. Looks like Fister disagrees with both of us.

    • David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:52 AM

      Fister is the type of guy to never make excuses. So even if it’s true, Fister won’t say so.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:09 AM

        I like Fister and he almost worked around his early control issues.

      • coop202 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:15 PM

        Det just might become an awesome trade chip…

      • veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:16 PM

        Spoke too soon?

      • coop202 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:16 PM

        Spoke to soon

      • nats128 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:47 PM

        Det pitched well. If Barrett does his job you are out of it quickly.

  8. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:49 AM

    Jason Hammel is 7-0 against us. We have to be due.

  9. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:09 AM

    Werth badly fooled twice.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:13 AM

      I wonder if the 11 sun has a much different look? I know for mr the angle of the sun can be an issue, but then again I am not a professional player.

  10. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:10 AM

    Werth with a bad read on Coghlan’s ball in the air and now a lousy throw on Coghlan going 1st to 3rd. Not a good start.

  11. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:10 AM

    Give up a 1-0 lead but a nice 6-3 doubleplay.

  12. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:11 AM

    Good throw by Werth we would have been out of it.

  13. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:17 AM

    The Cubs aren’t in any playoff hunt and have been playing super aggressive with nothing to lose.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:19 AM

      They do take the extra base.

  14. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:18 AM

    Werth makes up

  15. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:18 AM

    Good. Werth gets that run back!

  16. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:18 AM

    The power is returning for Werth

  17. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:20 AM

    Come on Tanner don’t hit the barrell of their bats

    • scmargenau - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:26 AM

      Lucky babip

  18. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:23 AM

    Nats need to try something new against Ruggiano.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:27 AM

      There are guys who we seem to have no plan against.

  19. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:24 AM

    Stay out of the middle on strike 1. They are swinging.

  20. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:26 AM

    Baker 19 hits 4 against Nats 3 against Tanner.

  21. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:27 AM

    The Cubs have Roark’s number.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:29 AM

      Well strike 1 is a flat fast ball everyone can hit that

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:31 AM

      He’s not pitching well. Any team would be bashing him. I think we are lucky as this could be a lot worse.

      • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:32 AM

        The fast ball is flat and you are right he will be crushed if that doesn’t change.

  22. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:31 AM

    As bad as the pitching has been only down 1, but he needs to unflatten that fast ball immediately.

  23. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:34 AM

    Good hustle Zim

  24. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:34 AM

    Happy 4th, all. Leggo!

  25. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:34 AM

    Ryan has to be running much better. Great job beating the throw.

  26. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:36 AM

    Difference in BABIP, Rendon’s hot grounder goes right at the SS. Tough luck doubleplay.

  27. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:37 AM

    Desmond has to layoff that 0-2 pitch. Didn’t even need to throw it in the zone.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:39 AM

      Strike 2 wasn’t in the zone.

  28. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:38 AM

    Ian swung at the last 2 breaking balls like they were fast balls. Breaking balls going down rarely are hit well. Both were probably balls. That is good pitching, you want guys to swing at balls.

  29. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:39 AM

    Yeah, Roark has nothing today.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:45 AM

      So far no movement. Hasn’t tried enough breaking pitches to know.

  30. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:40 AM

    “Ghost of Steve M. – Jul 4, 2014 at 11:23 AM
    Nats need to try something new against Ruggiano.”

    Yah, like I said.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:41 AM

      McCatty and the scouts are not doing their job.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:44 AM

        or poor execution.

      • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:50 AM

        Poor execution by every pitcher?

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:54 AM

        I’m just referring to Tanner today. I think in the series in Chicago that Ruggiano was in the zone and making contact with everything.

  31. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:40 AM

    Tanner’s ball has no movement still I see.

  32. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:42 AM

    This looks like we want to score 7

  33. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:43 AM

    3-1….hardly insurmountable. Get it together, Tanner.

  34. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:49 AM

    Nice hit Denard!

  35. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:54 AM

    3-1 is definitely doable, but Roark has to stop giving up runs.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:57 AM

      If its high let it fly. sherholtz did. But didn’t pass bass running 101

  36. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:54 AM

    Harper same message we gave Desmond. Don’t swing at breaking balls that are low. Almost impossible to get a hit on them.

    My favorite saying about any pitch other than a fast ball, “if its low let it go, if its high let it fly.”

    • coop202 - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:58 AM

      He’s been doing that since he came in the league. Needs to get his head around it somehow

      • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:59 AM

        Needs to practice more with Livo

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:59 AM

      That saying works with knuckleballers and if you are seeing that breaker as a fastball or sitting fastball and not picking up the rotation then you are going to swing and miss.

      • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:04 PM

        That is true, but if you made it to the major leagues you should have a trained eye. That is usually what keeps many very good hitters never make the majors.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:08 PM

        Yes. Werth ID’d it.

  37. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:57 AM

    Tanner Roark can thank luck for saving his 4th inning.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:57 AM

      Let me rephrase that, thank Schierholtz stupidity there.

      • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:05 PM

        Exactly.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:58 AM

      Or bad base running.

  38. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:58 AM

    Nats/Astros hats?

    • veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:05 PM

      I guess every team in the MLB has the star today?

  39. Mrsb loves the Nats - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:59 AM

    Tanner just doesn’t have it today…. Come on offense, gotta pick up the pitcher…

    And I don’t like Harp behind Span. Would have rather him batted 3rd and Jayson 5th…. Just my 2 cents….

    Happy 4th of July!

  40. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:04 PM

    Very close ball 4. Risky.

  41. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:04 PM

    Great AB by Werth.

  42. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:09 PM

    We are helpless against Hammel’s curveball.

  43. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:11 PM

    We are 0 for 5 once a runner is on any runner is on, not just RISP.

    Maybe Roark should throw junk, as it works for Hammels, we swing at his junk.

  44. Mrsb loves the Nats - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:12 PM

    Oh Tanner…. Is he on extra rest?

    • David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:15 PM

      Yes, hasn’t pitched in a week

  45. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:15 PM

    Ramos costs us a run.

  46. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:18 PM

    Roark’s been throwing garbage for most of the game so it’s not like he’s been unlucky, but the defense hasn’t helped. Werth gifted them a run and Ramos did too.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:31 PM

      Agree

  47. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:27 PM

    ruh roh…..when your great bunting pitcher fails to lay one down…..not good

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:28 PM

      He fouled off ball 4

  48. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:27 PM

    That was high Roark, take the walk

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:36 PM

      Roark can’t get the bunt down which becomes the chance to get in a run with a productive out.

  49. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:30 PM

    Now 0 for 7 with a man on base.

  50. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:31 PM

    When its high let it fly. He did and hut it on the ground. That is not easy to do.

  51. Mrsb loves the Nats - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:33 PM

    What was the thought process on batting Bryce 2nd now?

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:35 PM

      To make Bryce happy would be my guess.

      • veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:37 PM

        Rendon was doing fine in that spot. Ugh.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:36 PM

      Right handed pitcher they said

  52. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:33 PM

    Don’t think about the sliders low. Twice Harper looked awful swinging at 4 sliders in the dirt.

  53. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:33 PM

    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Not sure why MW decided today was the day to shake up the lineup when we’ve been winning.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:38 PM

      Early in the game said moved him because of the right handed oitcher

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:39 PM

      By the way I agree it was not broke don’t fix.

  54. snerdblurter - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:35 PM

    Man, Harper’s not seeing it well AT ALL since he came back. Offering at all kinds of hot garbage.

    • snerdblurter - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:37 PM

      Credit to Hammel though. That offspeed stuff is nasty.

  55. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:39 PM

    kids took my tickets today, beautiful day.

    I do not blame MW at all and in fact, Bryce looks like a horses ass right now. MW can easily tell him after today to shut is spoiled mouth up and let him manage the team. Its games like this that really show how much better Trout is as a pro at the this point than our big baby, who I usually defend.

    Roark just does not have it today, we should still win the series. too bad with a sell out crowd, it was one of those days. Wonder if Bryce will blame MW for moving him up to high in the order?

    • veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:44 PM

      You prematurely said we were going to lose the last game and you know how that turned out. Why again?

      • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:52 PM

        Hammels

        nuff said

    • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:48 PM

      back at you my man, have a great 4th!!

      Bryce hopefully will be humbled after today, I think MW made a good move in appeasing the brat and letting him make a fool of himself

  56. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:40 PM

    Seriously, I hope MW is trying to appease a whiny Bryce Harper.

    • veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:41 PM

      *isn’t

      • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:42 PM

        I am glad he did, this should humble and shut Bryce’s ass up after today

  57. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:40 PM

    The idea to put Harper 2nd is that he’s much better against RHP than Rendon is. It’s really not that complicated.

    • David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:44 PM

      By the way, Rendon struck out wailing at a curveball too. Nobody is hitting Hammel’s curve. To say Harper can’t hit curves is wrong. He’s hit curves well over his career. One game against a nasty curve doesn’t change that. But I guess it’s become cool to bash Bryce around here

      • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:46 PM

        memo….. Rendon as well as nobody else on the Nats has publicly questioned MW and as I said, I usually defend Bryce… no more… its called professionalism and having each others back.

      • David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:47 PM

        That’s fine, it has nothing to do with what has happened in this game though.

      • scmargenau - Jul 5, 2014 at 6:50 AM

        Bryce has not hit curves well over his “career”
        And ever manager knows it. Are you Bryce’s agent? Be objective now and then.

      • David Proctor - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:58 AM

        The data shows that he has hit curves well. That’s being objective. Your eye test is not.

  58. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:43 PM

    2 horrible at bats for the so called super star, not even competitive at bats at that

  59. Faraz Shaikh - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:43 PM

    Well let’s hope no contender trades for Hammel.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:46 PM

      Or an he goes to the AL

  60. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:44 PM

    are Cubs wearing 1945 uniforms? any one know, that was the last season they played in a WS

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:48 PM

      First time in ages it says Cubs not Chicago

      • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:51 PM

        so 1945? circa

  61. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:45 PM

    We needed to see the angle from first base camera well. Of course MASN doesn’t bother to show us that. The one’s they showed couldn’t tell a thing.

    I am not sure produces for MASN or if they just don’t cameras but we get to many bad angles.

    I watch many different broadcast and the camera work of MASN is probably the weakest.

  62. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:48 PM

    Well except the last one was a ball called incorrectly.

  63. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:49 PM

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BrtuTB4CQAAXf_Z.jpg

    Pitches 5 and 6. Not strikes. MAYBE 5. Definitely not 6.

  64. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:50 PM

    this was the toughest game of the series and the only one where the Cubs had a chance, Nats should win next 2.

    not a big deal to lose this one

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:55 PM

      We still pull it out.

  65. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:53 PM

    Roark took forever to start pitching well, but has improved a ton. Why such a slow start.

  66. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:56 PM

    lets see how the rest of the season plays out with Bryce, then we will have a good idea on him long term, or not

  67. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:57 PM

    Alright, time to get some runs and make a run at winning this game.

  68. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:57 PM

    Now let’s hit with men on now.

  69. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 12:59 PM

    Quick hook on Hammel. Thanks Cubs, even if it doesn’t help us.

    • veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:02 PM

      I’d seen enough of that curveball

  70. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:04 PM

    Wings through a fast ball.

  71. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:04 PM

    Ian, Ian, Ian. Chasing that high heat.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:06 PM

      High heat is always inviting. Just hit and it goes a long way.

      • veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:08 PM

        Was ball 4. Has Ian ever taken a 3-2 walk?

  72. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:05 PM

    Vamos Ramos!!!!

  73. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:05 PM

    2 runs to go.

  74. philipd763 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:06 PM

    Ramos should be batting cleanup and Harper should bat eighth!

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:09 PM

      That won’t happen.

  75. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:08 PM

    Why did McOut even go in the battery’s box? He was not interested in swinging at anything. Strike one was in the power zone, that was hit table one if the three, the other two just could tap foul.

  76. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:10 PM

    Might as well have, he showed no inclination to swing.

  77. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:21 PM

    Det does the job,

    Now let’s get those runs.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:31 PM

      Interesting to see Det inserted in a spot that we usually see Blevins with all those lefties.

  78. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:22 PM

    Crucial hold, Det. Had me worried. Top of the order. Get your shlt together, Bryce.

  79. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:32 PM

    Jayson Werth doing his job and sitting on 2nd both ALR and RZim can’t get it done.

    • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:56 PM

      thats why Jayson has a ring and the others, well….

  80. coop202 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:40 PM

    Bryce just looks sloppy…

    • stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:49 PM

      Doesn’t seem to be picking up the breaking ball at all. To be fair, Hammel’s was nasty today.

      Each of our players who’ve had extended time on the DL have spun their wheels for a while, coming back.

  81. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:41 PM

    Oh my, walking the bases loaded to face Ruggiano.

  82. philipd763 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:42 PM

    I’m still waiting for the Nats to unleash this big offense machine that San Angelo keeps crowing about. I think FP is delusional. A few hits against the Rockies’ ratty pitching staff doesn’t show me anything.

  83. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:43 PM

    Always the positive thinker!

    • stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:50 PM

      Thinker?

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:53 PM

        Much sarcasm, you can go opposite on the last 2 words.

  84. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:44 PM

    Barrett just isn’t good at holding runners.

  85. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:45 PM

    Barrett does nothing. Turns a 1 out man on 1st situation into a mess quickly. Come on. Pitch the ball. Goes after Sweeney who has a .214 BA like he was pitching Freddie Freeman. Just awful.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:47 PM

      He sure threw gas on this situation

    • nats128 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:48 PM

      Ghost, not to correct you but Sweeney stepped in batting .207. After the hit .214

  86. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:46 PM

    Wow Barrett threw gas on that little fire there when he got there.

  87. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:46 PM

    not in the cards today, too bad, 41,000 plus on 7/4 our bats go silent

    Bryce set the tone early, am waiting for him to grow up, he needs to look at Trout and other franchise players and start being accountable, he owes his team and his manager an apology today.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:48 PM

      How he set the tone? We were losing before he ever batted. Tanners fast ball not moving was the tone.

      • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:52 PM

        0-4 all horrible at bats, you really want to defend his effort, go ahead

  88. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:47 PM

    just weird, 200 hitters own us

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:49 PM

      Focus and execution is the key.

  89. manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:50 PM

    Bullpen B implodes

    • veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:53 PM

      When it was that close, you can’t pitch em. They just can’t be trusted, unfortunately.

  90. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:50 PM

    I have no problem with Barrett in, MW is correct to save Storen and Clip in a game like this. I would assume that in clutch situations, only Storen, Clip and unfortunately Soriano are used.

    not sold on Barrett and Det should be part of a trade, i hope

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:51 PM

      No one would trade us anything for them. They are going nowhere.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:52 PM

      Mick, I have no problem bringing in Barrett. The problem is Barrett pitched to a .207 guy like he was a great hitter and nibbled and fell behind and gave up a gap hit.

    • stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 3:01 PM

      That was the beginning of the middle of the end for me and Danny’s toy.

      I’m totally over them now, and I was a fan before he was born.

    • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 4:53 PM

      lets be fair, George and Deon were old and washed up when they came to DC, Deon just milked Synder. Bryce is young and does have great potential and has been an All Star his first 2 seasons. My beef with him is he is a selfish kid who does not think before he speaks. The media is partly to blame as they egg it on. When he calls out his manager on where he feels he should hit in the line up and is moved up from 7th to 2nd in 48 hours and not only goes 0-4, but the at bats are terrible, he looks bad for not backing his comments up. Every fan has right to call out Bryce on this matter, this is not vitriol, it is more than fair. For all those being called out for daring to legitimately call out Bryce as laughable, there are also many who feel it is laughable to defend Bryce no matter what he does, even when he hurts the team.

  91. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:50 PM

    Thank you Aaron Barrett. Thank you Jerry Blevins.

  92. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:51 PM

    Blevins can’t be trusted against RHP ever and only against lefties sometimes. We need a replacement.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:55 PM

      True, but it all starts with Barrett not doing his job. That was awful. Blevins is nothing more than a LOOGY and again can’t get the job done.

  93. stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:51 PM

    Very little to recommend this game except the weather. Glad I swapped my tix for Jayson Werth a Garden Gnome night.

  94. stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:52 PM

    Promises, promises.

  95. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:54 PM

    I expect my so called franchise player to go at least 1-4 today and get on base at least once

  96. veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:55 PM

    We lost a game, big deal. We’ll get em tomorrow. Harper better not be in that #2 spot. He needs to earn that.

  97. stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:57 PM

    Nats left handers 1 for 13 today, but yeah it’s all about Harper.

    I liked the look of this lineup today, but obviously it hasn’t worked out. You’ll have to consult one of our resident finger pointers to find out who’s to blame, though.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:02 PM

      It all starts with this team’s starting pitching. The lack of execution when the Nats had men on base can be spread amongst many but none bigger than Roark in a bunting situation and K’d.

      • stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:14 PM

        That was painful.

      • stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:35 PM

        That the count had been 3-0 was the cherry on the sundae.

      • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 4:56 PM

        Tanner had a bad day all around, but he will bounce back. Now Blevins I have no confidence in and I believe he is disaster waiting to happen every time he is in a tight spot. i do not blame Rizzo for obtaining him, you hit or miss with some players, Blevins is a clear miss to me

  98. stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 1:58 PM

    When Castro catches THAT ball, it ain’t your day.

  99. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:00 PM

    Braves play 36-51 AZ, great

    • David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:03 PM

      AZ won 2/3 from them earlier this year. Though the Braves are hot. But so were we. Can’t predict ball.

  100. stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:01 PM

    Welp, at least it’s over early.

  101. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:02 PM

    Hammel owns us, Roark wasn’t sharp and Barrett/Blevins gave it up in the end. It happens. You’re not going to win every game. Go get ‘em tomorrow.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:08 PM

      “Gave it up” is what it felt like. Blevins vs RHs is a waste of time. Barrett faces Sweeney who hits RHPs worse than LHPs and was slashing .202/.236/.240/.477 That’s pathetic.

      • David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:11 PM

        Barrett has changed his delivery after the balk. Even though he went back to the double pump, he now pauses much longer. Could affect his rhythm.

  102. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:10 PM

    I need to congratulate Ryan Sweeney. That was his 1st hit this season as a pinch-hitter. Was previously 0-8.

  103. stoatva - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:13 PM

    Kilgore sez:

    @AdamKilgoreWP: The inning turned when Williams pulled Detwiler against Mike Olt, who is 9 for 49 with 15 Ks against left-handers this season.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:20 PM

      Sure or when Aaron Barrett gave it up to a struggling lefty who hits righties worse and hadn’t had a pinch-hit all season before today

  104. Nats fool - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:13 PM

    Concerned about the strikeouts on balls out of the zone. I’ll take it as an off-day. Again, just a very streaky team. Hopefully, they can put it together after the ASB. We are looking at about 87 wins unless we pick up the pace.

    • David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:21 PM

      The Nationals swing at the 7th fewest percentage of pitches out of the zone. Only 28.8%.

      • scmargenau - Jul 5, 2014 at 12:44 AM

        Werth ALR n Rendon are 80% of that I bet

  105. senators69 - Jul 4, 2014 at 2:55 PM

    Not a fan of some of Matt Wms’ line-ups and pitching subs.
    Barrett and Blevins not getting it done. Shoulda left Det in.
    Also, Span should hit lower and Ramos should hit higher.

  106. senators69 - Jul 4, 2014 at 3:02 PM

    Someone previously said Det was a trade chip.
    I think the Nats would rue the day the trade Det (unless for a monster player).

    I could see Det moving back into starting role if one of the existing starters gets hurt (ex: is Gio really ok?) or fails for a while (ex: Roark — while great until recently, is he coming back to earth? Could flip Det and Roark).

    Barrett and Blevins better get their s%^& together soon, else will look elsewhere.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 3:05 PM

      Give us your lineup.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 3:39 PM

        “senators69 – Jul 4, 2014 at 2:55 PM
        Not a fan of some of Matt Wms’ line-ups and pitching subs.
        Barrett and Blevins not getting it done. Shoulda left Det in.
        Also, Span should hit lower and Ramos should hit higher.”

        Give us your lineup.

  107. Rick - Jul 4, 2014 at 3:24 PM

    Looks like Harper (the manager) should have benched himself instead of switching spots with Rendon in the batting order.

    • BurnedOnce - Jul 4, 2014 at 3:50 PM

      +1. If Harper had a hit in one of his at bats it would have result in one or two additional runs. All he needed was one hit. With two we would have won the game. Twice he had two on. And twice Werth had extra bases after Harper failed to get on base. He wants to mouth off and be the hero? Well he’s the goat in this game. His lack of performance cost the team. Right now he is not a 2 hitter. He’s all mouth and a poser. It would be interesting to take Rendon’s at bats today and put them in the 2 slot and see what the score would be.

  108. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 4:05 PM

    The vitriol in this thread against Harper is hilarious. But there always has to be someone for the fans to b**ch about. Now that Danny’s on the bench, it’s Bryce. If you look at Harper and Rendon’s numbers against RHP, it’s pretty obvious Harper should bat second. Rendon should bat higher than 6, but at the expense of Span, not Bryce. Span should hit lower. To call Harper the GOAT of the game is just laughable. How about Roark who gave up 4 runs and made a crucial mistake in not getting the bunt down? Or how about ALR who had just as bad a game as Harper. Really, the only guy who played well was Werth and even his defense cost us a run (of course, he got it back with his offense, but still). These games happen. Can we go one damn day without someone turning on one of our own players? Some people just love to complain.

    • Faraz Shaikh - Jul 4, 2014 at 4:23 PM

      I approve this message.

    • unkyd59 - Jul 4, 2014 at 5:40 PM

      +1

    • Dave - Jul 4, 2014 at 7:01 PM

      I’m just reading this game thread after seeing the game live at the ballpark.

      I am reminded once again why I avoid these game threads like the plague. This one is dominated by about three people who don’t have anything to say except how terrible Williams, Harper, Detwiler, etc., are and how stupid everybody on the team is for losing.

      Depressing to see that the NI game threads have sunk to this level.

      • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:11 PM

        I only complained about swing at low sliders, so I am off the hook.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 7:53 PM

      Don’t pay attention to them. Without Danny to knock around it’s Bryce’s turn. Last week it was Werth.

    • scmargenau - Jul 5, 2014 at 12:40 AM

      How can u not see what a selfish and bloated ego player Harper is. After a year of being new, his weakness are exposed and he’s nothing special. But he acts like it. I mean what 21 year old second guesses his manager publicly? Or slights a teammate? We have every right not to like him, just like u can defend him…

  109. Joe Seamhead - Jul 4, 2014 at 4:16 PM

    Got home from the park a little while ago, What a beautiful day! I’m in my early 60′s and have never seen more perfect weather in DC on the 4th of July. A great day for baseball. I just breezed through the blog. I’ll never understand the bitterness on every at bat, every game from some of you all. It’s baseball.
    BTW, have I ever mentioned that I’m not sold on Jerry Blevins. Sheesh!

    • NatsLady - Jul 4, 2014 at 5:36 PM

      Nice to chat with you at the game, Joe! It was a perfect day (except for the result). Frustrating, not a clean game (even though officially no “errors”). Ramos looked slow behind the plate, Werth was not alert in the first inning, and free bases leaked into runs for the Cubs–who did look sharp and awake. The Cubs are not a bad team, if they had not had such a poor start to the season they would be contending, and their record in the last month or so is the same as ours–and they are playing like a good team, which is the key element. They are similar to the Nats, in that they have good pitching, mediocre offense and are healthy (except for Bonifacio). It seemed as if after three relatively easy games against the Rockies someone took their foot off the gas pedal and tried coasting. Nope.

      (1) Roark — I feel teams may have gotten a bead on him now that he’s been around for almost a full season. I was disappointed he didn’t get the bunt down. However, I bear in mind he is our “No. 5″ starter and expectations should be tempered. If we win 50% of the games he starts that’s good.

      (2) Harper — yes, it’s expected that any player who comes back from such a long layoff will struggle. The pitchers and other hitters are “ahead” of him while he’s, in essense, reprising spring training. He bashed minor-league pitchers in rehab, and perhaps based on that, he thought he was more ready than he is, and he spouted off about where he should hit in the lineup. He came up in key spots and produced nothing–TODAY. That doesn’t mean he’ll produce nothing tomorrow, but this was the first game where it mattered (the Nats having won all the other games since he came back).

      (3) Williams and Barrett — Matty had bad luck with his matchups today, but if Det had given up a hit to Mike Olt the first thing people would have said is, “Why didn’t Williams bring in Barrett?” HOWEVER, I might not have brought in Barrett with a runner on base because he’s probably walking on eggshells with his motion. I would have tried to get him in with clean bases. So for that reason I might have left Detwiler in. Det’s been pitching very well lately.

      (4) Blevins — needs to get his act together. We (as fans) were told he was not just a LOOGY, that he could go an inning or more. He started off reasonably well, but seems to have “lost” it over the last month (since May 28 his ERA i 9.31, and today, obviously, broke his streak of not letting inherited runners score.) He also said he had made a mechanical adjustment and pitched a clean inning on June 30, but…

  110. micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 5:00 PM

    every Nats, DC and baseball fan needs to read this awesome blog by Dan Stenberg

    very very cool, from the Wash Post July, 5, 1914! copy and paste

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/dc-sports-bog/wp/2014/07/04/the-nats-story-from-july-4-1914/

    • Nats Amore - Jul 4, 2014 at 5:52 PM

      Great article. My favorite expression in it is when they refer to pitching as “slabbing” (as in the pitching slab or rubber, I guess), and very good pitching as “high-class slabbing”. I’ll have to try those phrases out in my baseball parlance! Thanks for the link.

      • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 8:22 PM

        more than welcome and I am so glad you, Ghost and Unky read it, I hope others will enjoy as well. It dawned on me, that in addition to that old article being 100 years, that this week was the 151st anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg. In 1914, only 51 years had past, meaning well over 50% of the young men on both sides who fought in the Civil war were still alive. I’m not sure what my point is, except to say that next year, 70 years would have past since the end of WW2. Time just flies on, but baseball transcends time, I am sure that there were old Civil war vets who followed the 1914 Nats and enjoyed the term “slabbing” as much as all of us do 100 years later and I hope it will still be as enjoyable 100 years from now.

      • ArVAFan - Jul 4, 2014 at 8:42 PM

        “needed a nerve tonic during the eighth” in 1914.

        equals

        Bourbon & Maalox in 2014.

        Thanks for the link!

      • unkyd59 - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:01 PM

        Magic Waters, Mick…..

    • unkyd59 - Jul 4, 2014 at 5:55 PM

      Great read! Loved the lingo, and wS able to get the gist of every expression… Cool…

      • micksback1 - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:13 PM

        God love ya unky!

        I just love this movie, thank you for posting this

        “hey dad, want to have catch” I get choked up everytime

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 4, 2014 at 6:34 PM

      “Bedient pitched good ball, but like Engel, was outslabbed in a real duel.”

      Oh Bedient! Outslabbed!

    • NatsLady - Jul 4, 2014 at 8:39 PM

      Enjoyed the article. Thanks for posting!

  111. Joe Seamhead - Jul 4, 2014 at 8:55 PM

    Barrett is still balkiing on every pitch. That double step of his is a balk, plain and simple. It’s going to kill him, and the Nats in a key situation.

    Off topiic, but we came directly home after the game, friends came by, I grilled marinated flank steaks, with all the accouterments, and the guitars, mandolins, etc. came out and the bluegrass is sweetly filling the evening around my house tonight out in Seneca. A great day in the life!

    • David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:03 PM

      It’s actually not a balk by rule. If you do it every time, it is not a balk.

      • Joe Seamhead - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:11 PM

        I disagree, David The two step thing he does can be correctly interpreted as a balk,[ i.e. a move to to be deceptive to a base runner] at the umpire’s discretion on any pitch. You can’t do the two step thing that he’s doing. Like I said the other night, get the league to review it, give their call, otherwise it’s going to bite him in the butt at the worst time.

      • David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:18 PM

        Why is Jordan Walden not called for a balk when he’s not even on the rubber then? The logic is that if you do it every time then the baserunners know you do it every time and it’s not deceiving. It had never been called before in Barrett’s professional career. Cowboy Joe West is the one who got it wrong, IMO.

      • Joe Seamhead - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:33 PM

        David? Who the hell worked with Barrett before now? Why would nobody have corrected it? It’s a balk. I understand what you are saying, but West wasn’t really wrong, and like I said, it can be selectively called at any time, and I’m telling you it will be called at the worst time.He needs to be correct his footwork.

      • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:15 PM

        Deception is when you do something different. So not to do it by definion is a balk.

        MW has asked Joe Torrent for clarification. His point is all the odd delivers are balks or none. If they are your normal delivery.

  112. Joe Seamhead - Jul 4, 2014 at 9:05 PM

    Mark? Word Press is a travesty. Whoever is in charge of this has to be held accountable if you, your sponsors, and the powers that be want us all to keep hanging out here. Just saying.

    • scmargenau - Jul 5, 2014 at 12:30 AM

      Agree – they should choose a diff comment module/plugin

      • unkyd59 - Jul 5, 2014 at 7:14 AM

        I just complained to WordPress here:

        http://vip.wordpress.com/contact/

        It’s actually a link to inquire about their VIP service, but it was the only contact link I could find. I complained to Mark a few weeks ago. I’m actually insulted by this debacle…

    • NatsLady - Jul 5, 2014 at 7:53 AM

      This doesn’t seem to happen on HardballTalk. Maybe something is not set up correctly here.

  113. David Proctor - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:49 PM

    Looks like we’re avoiding Samardzija tomorrow. He was just traded to the A’s. As was Hammel. Too bad it couldn’t happen a day sooner.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:16 PM

      I was about to post this. Cubs were 1 day slow.

  114. NatsLady - Jul 4, 2014 at 10:55 PM

    Samardzija (and Hammel) to the A’s.

  115. unkyd59 - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:00 PM

    Wow.

    Ken Rosenthal ✔ @Ken_Rosenthal
    Follow
    DEAL IS DONE: #Cubs send Samardzija and Hammel to #Athletics for Addison Russell, per sources. May be other players and team(s) involved.
    10:43 PM – 4 Jul 2014

    • veejh - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:07 PM

      Sounds like the A’s are going for it.

      • micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:21 AM

        I would now favor A’s heavily to win the AL

  116. Dave - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:15 PM

    Looks like the As traded away several of their very top prospects. This definitely is a World-Series-or-bust move.

    Parenthetically, let me agree with Joe Seamhead on Word Press. A total mess. On my iPad, the comments at the bottom of the thread are from early afternoon, but I’m responding to news from about 11:00 at night.

    • manassasnatsfan - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:18 PM

      Everyone but the word press administrator is aware how poor it is.

      Heard it is fine some places, just not here.

    • Steady Eddie - Jul 4, 2014 at 11:42 PM

      Basically the word on MLB TV was that the As indeed have a very short window to win as they won’t have the payroll to keep their top guys very long.

      This suggests we’re likely to face Dallas Beeler tomorrow, who pitched in the first game of last Saturday’s doubleheader. On the one hand, that doesn’t seem like as much of a break as it might be — we only got 4 hits off him, and he was the losing pitcher only because he WP’d in the first run (though we would have had 2 runs that inning if Span hadn’t gotten himself picked off right before Rendon’s double). Span had a single and a walk off Beeler, Rendon a double and single.

      OTOH, the bottom of the order was Frandsen, McLouth, and Lobaton, none of whom (let’s hope) will play tomorrow. And Werth (along with Ramos and of course Harper) didn’t play and has suddenly become our hottest hitter. So — still rather face Beeler than Samardzjia.

      • Faraz Shaikh - Jul 5, 2014 at 12:32 AM

        And with that, I will go to bed with some peace of mind. Thanks y’all.

  117. natsfan1a - Jul 5, 2014 at 9:03 AM

    What, they couldn’t have done this on July 3? Oh, well. No Samardzija today, anyway. ;-)

    Mark Zuckerman @ZuckermanCSN

    Samardzija was supposed to face #Nats tomorrow. RT @CSNMooney Source confirms Cubs trade Samardzija and Hammel to A’s.

    • micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 10:49 AM

      what did Cubs get in return. I feel for cubs fans, hey already have given up.

  118. natsfan1a - Jul 5, 2014 at 9:04 AM

    But I won’t see the Saturday game anyway, at least in real time.

  119. natsfan1a - Jul 5, 2014 at 9:44 AM

    Oh, looks like folks were already on the trade. When I checked in this a.m., the last comment time stamp (before my morning comment) was around 1:45 p.m. yesterday. Now it’s 12:32 a.m. No wonder it was so quiet in here…

  120. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 9:49 AM

    Is Tommy Milone an odd man out in the As rotation unless they have more trades to make. He’s been pitching well for them so their new rotation will be interesting.

  121. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 10:18 AM

    Like I said the other day the Nats need to be looking at some trades. Before you decide to trade and replace Blevins, do you move Blevins into a strictly LOOGY position in the bullpen? I say yes. His splits tell you he is awful against RHPs.

    The other spot is upgrading a bench that is suspect. Frandsen and Espinosa have their spots. I suppose McLouth won’t be moved which leaves Hairston who has 1 hit since May 31st.

    • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 10:45 AM

      You are correct, no team in their right mind want $5M McLouth.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 10:48 AM

        Veejh, yes and I think it’s $5.5 million through 2015.

      • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:02 AM

        Even worse. LOL

  122. micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 10:55 AM

    listening to junkies this morning, not sure which one but he had an interesting discussion on Nats, 3 thoughts from it that I thought were interesting, not sure I agree with all of it but for what its worth, the gist was:

    1) Nats need another power hitter, do not need starting pitching or BP help ( I agree about starting pitching and to a degree about the BP, but Blevins clearly should be unloaded)

    2) Moving Harper to second in the lineup was a slap at Rendon’s hard work and production. i definitely agree with that and the fact that MW is an old school guy, makes it disappointing because it sends the wrong message to a hard worker like Rendon who is playing like an All star).

    3) The focus from July on should be on offense (not sure I totally agree)

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:04 AM

      The Junkies try to create controversy. Tony Rendon doesn’t care. Harper cares where he bats.

      • micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:07 AM

        the only thing I question is, it appears that Span and Rendon area good 1-2 punch, why fool with it after a 5 game winning streak?

        I think that is fair

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:11 AM

        Yes, but with Hammel who they had little success MW wanted to put the pressure on with the lefties stacked. It didn’t work. No biggie.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:06 AM

      Where can you insert a power bat in a lineup that is set? Easy for them to talk out if their a$$e$ without spelling it out exactly how it would happen.

      • micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:08 AM

        I do not know, that is a good question and for whom. i would think that the power bat is more of a depth thing, not a starting player

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:16 AM

        Hairston is the bench power bat which isn’t worth the spot.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:18 AM

        Hairston is the bench power bat which isn’t worth the spot. With Harper and Ramos, the Nats have HR power from #2 to #8 and it’s legit. No other team can say that except the Barves.

      • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:11 AM

        This team kind of has the make up of a lot of 20+ HR hitters that just aren’t getting it done, besides Dez and LaRoche, of course. Harper is our power bat. Zim, Werth, Ramos, and Harper are all underachieving in the HR department. If all of them come around, we’re going to score tons of runs for the remainder.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:14 AM

        Well said Veejh and don’t forget the hidden power of Rendon. That’s a lot of power bats. I personally think the Nats need another finesse bat but thats why they got McLouth and Frandsen.

      • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:17 AM

        Yes, Rendon, too. He’s not underachieving, though. Let him continue to develope at whatever pace he needs. We don’t really need his power, it’s a bonus.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:19 AM

        Well said. I Luke his gap power and exactly, the HRs are a bonus.

  123. micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 10:57 AM

    oh, they also made good points that the fact that espi is on pace to get 500 abs, is not good and that Leon and Lobaton create a serious hitting void anytime they play (I agree with that)

    • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:08 AM

      Now that Zim is back at 3rd, I’m sure that projected 500 ABs will go down?

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:09 AM

      Yes, and duh! It seems the only time they talk about the Nats is when they have nothing else to discuss plus they have to keep up the charade so they can get their comp Prez tix.

  124. micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:11 AM

    so can one assume that the Cubs as team is mentally down from the trade they made. It sends a message, i think to the players that they have written off the 2014 season. My point is that, the Nats should be able to beat this team today and Sunday

    Can someone explain to me why the Cubs unloaded their 2 best pitchers?

    • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:14 AM

      Why? Because they got the A’s two best prospects and only had control of Hammels through 2015, and Smardjia through the end of this season. I think the Cubs won the deal.

      • micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:19 AM

        Thank veejh and that makes sense. But, can one again also say that for past 50 years plus that Cub fans can argue that they always seem to win the deal when they make a mid season trade, only to make another mid season trade next season, lol Remember, Hamels and Smardjia were suppose to be building blocks for the Cubs?

      • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:23 AM

        Cubs are stockpiling some serious prospects. Maybe they’ll make a move on a serious blue chip ace at some point. Who knows?

      • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:24 AM

        The SS the Cubs got from the A’s is the #3 prospect in all of baseball.

      • chaz11963 - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:57 AM

        Cubs don’t need a SS. They have Castro and they also a very good SS prospect in the minor leagues. I suspect they will look to deal one of them.

  125. micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:16 AM

    Ghost

    i think McClouth can be that power bat, no so much home runs but with RISP. He needs to play more so I again go back to MW’s goal to keep his outfielders fresh. Perhaps he will begin rotating them every 3-4 days?

    • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:19 AM

      Now that Zim is back at 3rd, McLouth will get more playing time. MW needs to start rotating in McLouth more often to get his bat going and to give the OFs rest. We will need the bench dialed in for the playoffs. Yes, playoffs.

  126. micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:31 AM

    thanks for info veejh, did not know they got #3 prospect. so it sounds like A’s are WS or bust and the Cubs, once again are rebuilding

    • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:34 AM

      LOL…the Cubs have been rebuilding for years. I think their current path might actually end up going somewhere.

  127. micksback1 - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:36 AM

    good stuff this morning veejh and Ghost, time to get outside and enjoy the day, back at you tonight

    Go NATS!!

    • veejh - Jul 5, 2014 at 11:39 AM

      enjoy your day. it’s only 8:30 here!

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 55 44 --
ATLANTA 55 47 1.5
MIAMI 48 52 8.0
NEW YORK 48 54 8.5
PHILADELPHIA 44 58 12.5
Through Thursday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
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

Mark joins Rob Carlin and Joe Orsulak every Thursday at 4 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet for a half-hour show on the Nats, Orioles and rest of MLB. Re-airs Thursdays at 11:30 p.m., Saturdays at 9 a.m. and Sundays at 11:30 a.m.

ON THE RADIO

As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...

MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.

*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.

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