Skip to content

Instant analysis: Braves 3, Nats 1

Aug 10, 2014, 11:16 PM EDT

USA Today Sports Images USA Today Sports Images

GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On the heels of their marathon, rain-delayed, 11-inning win early Sunday morning, the Nationals were grateful for a nationally televised Sunday night appearance at Turner Field. But they showed up a bit sluggish, especially at the plate against a very tough young Braves left-hander.

Alex Wood dominated the Nationals’ lineup, allowing only Ian Desmond’s solo homer in the fourth but otherwise pitching brilliantly, striking out 12 over 7 1/3 innings that required 124 pitches. Gio Gonzalez wasn’t nearly as effective, serving up a solo homer to Justin Upton in the fourth and then letting the go-ahead run score in the fifth when he forgot to cover first base on a groundball to the right side.

Jerry Blevins tried to keep the deficit at one but gave up an insurance run on his 36th pitch out of the bullpen. Needing to mount a rally against an overworked Braves relief corps, the Nationals came up short. Craig Kimbrel finished it off, giving Atlanta the weekend series but sending the Nats out of town still holding a 3 1/2-game lead in the NL East.

HITTING LOWLIGHT: The Nationals did have some chances against Wood but squandered them. Particularly frustrated was Adam LaRoche, who entered red-hot for the month of August but wound up striking out four times, stranding five men on base in the process. That was a disappointing night for the Nationals’ cleanup hitter on a disappointing night altogether.

PITCHING LOWLIGHT: What a bizarre start for Gonzalez. The first six outs he recorded were all via strikeout, but sprinkled in between were two walks and a single, setting the stage for what was to come. Gonzalez served up a solo homer to Upton on a 3-2 changeup in the fourth and began to see his pitch count skyrocket. By the time he reached the fifth, he was gassed, with a pitch count into triple digits. Even so, Gonzalez appeared to get out of a big jam that would’ve kept the game tied at 1, only to fail to cover first base on a grounder to the right side. As Danny Espinosa scooped up the ball, he had nobody to throw it to, as the go-ahead run crossed the plate. It was a major mental mistake by Gonzalez, and it cost his team dearly.

STREAK WATCH: Denard Span once again kept his torrid streak alive in impressive fashion. With a fifth-inning double off the wall in right-center, Span has now reached base in 36 straight games (five shy of Ryan Zimmerman’s club record) while recording a hit in 14 straight games.

KEY STAT: Freddie Freeman is hitting .481 (25-for-52) against the Nationals this season and .263 (105-for-400) against everybody else.

UP NEXT: The Nationals will get a day off in the Big Apple, then open a 3-game series Tuesday night at Citi Field. Doug Fister was supposed to face Jacob deGrom, but the Mets’ rookie has shoulder soreness and will be replaced by a pitcher still to be determined.

117 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. Danny - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:17 PM

    Losers of 8 in a row. Our dear friends the Braves do what they do best and beat the Nats.

  2. stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:19 PM

    WOO HOO!!! In first place by 3 1/2 games! That’s what I’m talking’ about.

    All else is the flapping of gums.

    • npb99 - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:21 PM

      We were 4.5 ahead before this started, so we were going to be in first place no matter what.
      Personally, I’m glad we’re 3.5 up, but still pissed that we lost yet another series to the Braves, who have been very beatable lately.

    • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:18 AM

      Look. If u can’t beat the braves regularly…u just aren’t that good, or very lucky. U pick.

      Reality check for fanboys. Good players don’t forget to cover first. Good hitters don’t slam helmets, bats and whatever. Your ace doesn’t stress over errors, he picks u up. Stat boys will tell u otherwise… But common sense tells you to get rid of headaches and non performers.

      Say what you want with that 411 but it’s a fact. We need to make changes to be elite. Are we good? Damn right. But to win playoff series we need more.

      It reminds me of a restaurant with 3 star yelp rating. Guess what, don’t blame reviewers…u just aren’t that good. Greatness is easily recognized. If u r not disturbed we lost 2/3 to a team that lost 8 in arow and is just over 500 u need to wake up.

      Don’t mistake me as a hater. I watch every game, and there are many things I could be doing…but I choose to because I love this team. But I see what’s wrong and it bugs me. Am I alne here?

      • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:19 AM

        +1

      • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:20 AM

        Sorry didn’t mean to plus one me! But actuary…. Heh

      • Eric - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:31 AM

        I have no idea if we’re elite, but right before Zim tore his hamstring, I had no doubt we could get very far int he post season.

      • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 6:16 AM

        I dunno know. Starters and BP are shaky. But thortons a big plus. We simply don’t consistently score runs when it matters. We make “#3,4,5 starters look like cy young.

        Let’s see if the young guys pick us up!

      • mauimo22 - Aug 11, 2014 at 6:36 AM

        Absolutely agree 100% with you. I believe our issue vs. Barves is mostly mental. Other teams just dust them off but we get all worked up about “having to beat them”.
        Nats are just the 3-star Yelp restaurant right now!

  3. Eric - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:19 PM

    Hope tomorrow is a productive day off…

  4. veejh - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:20 PM

    This isn’t the end of the world. Braves got tough matchups coming….we should be able to create some distance.

    • Danny - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:22 PM

      The end of the world.. No. But predictable and extremely annoying!

      • veejh - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:23 PM

        Yeah, winning a series in ATL would be nice for once.

      • Eric - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:33 PM

        +1

    • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:23 AM

      Veejh- love u, but that’s not he point. It’s like backing into the playoffs. We need to dominate a less Ghana stellar braves team. Yet we flail and loose. Over and over.

      Caps used to win reg season a lot. How did that work out 3 coaches later.

      Adapt, evolve and get better.

      • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:25 AM

        Wow. Gotta lev auto correct. Poor Ghana

  5. stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:21 PM

    Tonight’s paid attendance: 18,191.

    Oof.

  6. David Proctor - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:21 PM

    So be it. I won’t lose sleep about leaving Atlanta 3.5 up. The head-to-head is frustrating, but it doesn’t matter. What matters is the standings and we’re still in a good spot.

    Gio I thought pitched pretty well, but they kept fouling off good pitches. I can live with that. What I can’t live with is not covering first base. Physical mistakes happen, it’s unacceptable to routinely make the same mental mistake like that, Hopefully someone gets through to him.

    • David Proctor - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:23 PM

      Also, ALR deserves equal blame. Part of his job is to know where the 2B is positioned. He was wrong to go after that ball when it was hit right at Espinosa. But Gio still has to be there as the backup plan so it’s on him.

      • stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:25 PM

        I thought I was going to get slammed for saying that earlier, but it was just before WordPress moved onto page 2, so hardly anyone saw it.

        But yes, the ball was hit directly to Espinosa and ALR should have stayed at home, IMO.

      • manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:27 PM

        Not to mention how many strikes over the plates he didn’t bother to swing, and how many pitches outside he had no reservation to swing at.

      • Eric - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:27 PM

        Agreed with both of you in the botched play. Misread and/or misplay by Gio and/or LaRoche.

      • wmlsays - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:28 PM

        Nats never bring it against the Braves. They do occasionally, but this inconsistency may cost them. They simply are not playing good ball. The whole NL looks poor compared to the AL. Rizzo did nothing to improve the team last month. He stands pat and the Nats stand with him.

      • David Proctor - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:31 PM

        All that matters is getting to the postseason. Very rarely does the best team on paper go all the way. What matters is who is hot. It could easily be us, especially if we have Zim.

      • Eric - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:30 PM

        Thornton was a pretty solid pick up imo.

        Cabrera has flashes, but so far I’m still waiting.

      • wmlsays - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:36 PM

        This team needs Zim to get well quickly. They have been playing poorly without him.

      • wmlsays - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:37 PM

        Fister has been the best addition to this team this year. Where would they be without him?

      • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:27 AM

        David. U r my hero. Really. But man, aren’t u concerned with play against atl and over 500 teams? U content with just an appearance?

  7. manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:21 PM

    Gio refuses to keep pitching high fastballs to Upton as we knew he should.
    Gio refuses to cover to first on a grounder to the right like you are taught from day 1.
    MW keeps Blevins in to face a bunch of righties.

    There is your three runs. All avoidable errors.

    • David Proctor - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:25 PM

      Upton had an AB over 10 pitches long. Upton kept fouling pitches off. You can’t really blame Gio for trying the changeup. It wasn’t a good changeup, but still.

      The others I agree with

      • manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:29 PM

        Change up low he would have struck out, but alas it was hanging, so I do have a problem, He eventually missed a high one if you kept it up.

  8. veejh - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:22 PM

    I’m most annoyed by MW pitching Blevins 2 innings in a row, once again. When is he going to learn he’s nothing more than a LOOGY.?

    • Eugene in Oregon - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:25 PM

      +1

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:26 PM

      He actually pitched real well and blue didn’t give him the K on Gattis. I don’t think with Kimbrel on his game it mattered much.

      My thought after the 4th in a 1-1 game is that it’s a game the Nats could win. Pull Gio and put in Detwiler and Stammen.

      MW gained so little by leaving Gio in. There was no way he was going beyond 5. He gained 2/3 of an inning and had to go to the ‘pen anyway and instead of a tie game was now behind 2-1.

      As MrsB said at 9:30, pull Gio. Yes, sooner than later and MW choose later.

      • manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:30 PM

        MW is not really quick to learn from his mistakes. He makes the same ones to often.

      • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:29 AM

        Um. Blame bats? Gio gave up just 2!

  9. Ghost of Steve M. - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:23 PM

    The time to make the move was pulling Gio after the 4th inning. It was the fork in the road. MW decided to let him pitch the 5th. He almost got out of it after letting the 1st to batters on base when he got a doubleplay ball, but he just couldn’t when he didn’t cover 1st base.

    Gio being Gio.

    • stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:23 PM

      And Matt being Matt.

    • manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:24 PM

      Gio faces the exact same in the third, got them 3 up 3 down, had he done it, MW looks fine.

  10. stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:23 PM

    Important thing to realize: After a Labor Day weekend series against the Dodgers, the rest of the season is exclusively against the NL East: Atlanta, Miami, Mets and Phillies.

    I think that’s a good thing. But it could be deadly.

    • Eugene in Oregon - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:50 PM

      The weekend series is actually at Seattle, then they play the Dodgers (in LA) on Labor Day itself, Tuesday and Wednesday. Those six games will be tough, which is why I suggest (somewhere below) that the Nats need to put some distance between themselves and the Braves over the next two weeks (when the schedule would seem to favor the Nats).

  11. manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:23 PM

    Fell short of my goal of winning every series. Just win the series against the Mets and Pirates this week, and all is well.

    • stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:24 PM

      +1

  12. sjm308 - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:24 PM

    Gio is now 0 – 7 against the Braves in his last 8 starts vs. a team we need to beat!

    Love that we have a day off.

    Hope our lads come back strong

    Go Nats!!

  13. coop202 - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:29 PM

    Way to get behind the Harper su*** chant – classy fans in atl

    • Eric - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:31 PM

      Is *that* what they were chanting? Man.

    • stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:32 PM

      The minuscule number of Barves and Barvettes on hand speaks volumes.

      • manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:48 PM

        What is with the attendance? We would have 35,000 at least.

  14. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:30 PM

    Disappointing, but not disastrous. Over the next two weeks, however, the schedule would seem to favor the Nats. They need to use those two weeks to put some distance between themselves and the Braves.

    • Eric - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:32 PM

      +1.

      Too bad the Braves have Haren tomorrow…

    • nicefellow31 - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:08 AM

      We blew an opportunity to put some distance on the Braves when they were losing 8 in a row. 3.5 games is still good but this team hasn’t gotten on a roll yet.

  15. stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:31 PM

    I seem to recall that when the Braves were hot and the Nats were not they had a lot of difficulties beating us. I may be wrong about that, but I don’t think so.

    • Eugene in Oregon - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:43 PM

      You’re not wrong. Nats were 10-8 against the Braves in 2010 and 9-9 against them in 2011.

      • stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:45 PM

        Thank you. As I recall, it drove the Braves fans nutz.

  16. Nats fool - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:32 PM

    If they win the East, it will be by the skin of their teeth. They are too weak offensively. With Werth and Zimm injured, and no major pickup at the trade deadline, I can foresee a swoon. Part bad luck, part organizational philosophy, and part lack of talent.

    • stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:34 PM

      Your commentary leaves a lot to be desired, too.

      • stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:36 PM

        I can foresee…

        You see, this is where you get confused.

      • Nats fool - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:45 PM

        I’ve got the envelope next to my forehead a la Carson. It’s baseball. Let me vent.

      • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:32 AM

        Why? Because he has an opinion that differs from yours? Get real.

    • manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:36 PM

      We can all the way.

  17. manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:33 PM

    I said this is the game thread. Strasburg and Gio don’t mix their pitches well. The other three starters do it much better.

    Do Gio and Stras pay attention to what is working for the other guys?

    It seems it would be a way to get better.

    • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:33 AM

      MNF – +1!!

      this is al big issue.

  18. stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:33 PM

    In case you missed Mr Proctor’s comment:

    What matters is who is hot. It could easily be us, especially if we have Zim.

    This, x1000

    • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:35 AM

      Maybe. This is a case for luck and streaks. I believe u make your own through solid play and talent.

  19. manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:35 PM

    Clayton Kershaw web gem. Gio not so web gem

    • veejh - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:40 PM

      I don’t think Gio was that bad. Braves had some good ABs against him. His change up failed him tonight at he wrong time.

      • manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:46 PM

        Change ups can’t fail, and you succeed.

  20. philipd763 - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:39 PM

    The only two Nats starting pitchers I trust are Fister, and to a lesser extent, Roark. Strasburg, Zimmermann and Gonzalez can’t be trusted as all three are in decline.

    • veejh - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:40 PM

      Can’t trust JZimm? GTFO.

    • David Proctor - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:42 PM

      Meanwhile, over in real life…

      • Eugene in Oregon - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:44 PM

        +1

      • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:37 AM

        Real life says he’s right. U never know which Zim will show up. Plz respect others opinions without gone sarcasm…because it’s warranted.

    • manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:45 PM

      I trust Zim. He just looses control , but gets it back fairly quickly.

  21. wmlsays - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:43 PM

    The Nats wonder why they are ignored and disrespected by the baseball world. Tonight, they really didn’t do much to convince anyone why they should be taken seriously.

    • stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:48 PM

      No, but an early August game with 18k snoozing fans in attendance wasn’t going to set the baseball world on its ear, regardless.

      • wmlsays - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:51 PM

        It was national TV and like Adam, they whiffed. Is Mark Williams really going to be the long term manager of this team?

      • stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:55 PM

        “Matt” Williams, of course.

        I’m curious about that, too. He hasn’t shown me anything at all, but I doubt if that costs him any sleep.

      • manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:56 PM

        Not sure about Mark Williams, Matt Williams in his first tear. This should be his worst year.

      • wmlsays - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:01 AM

        Yeah, I was thinking of my officemate. Oops.

      • Eric - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:04 AM

        If this is his worst year, I’m very excited for the future.

  22. manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:44 PM

    MW was at least logical about nit using back in of bullpen.

    But I think more telling he called Gio for not covering, A baseball okay that needs to be made.

    Waiting to read Mark’s quote from Gio.

  23. David Proctor - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:48 PM

    I still maintain Gio is not fully healthy. How many curveballs did he throw? Not many. How many good ones did he throw? Maybe two. That’s the pitch that causes the most pain on his shoulder. That’s his best pitch. He’s essentially been working without it. The changeup worked for a while because it surprised teams. Now the scouting reports are out and teams know to look for it, it’s not nearly as effective because it’s not nearly as good a pitch.

    If you take away any pitcher’s best pitch, they’re going to struggle.

    • manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:50 PM

      You could be correct. If you are I really would be unhappy. If shoulder is injured then rest it. If nit injured pitch more curves.

    • donniebenth - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:59 PM

      Good post DP.

      In my mind the playoff rotation is becoming pretty clear.

      Fister, Zimm, Roark, SS

      Takes pressure off Stras… Relegates Gio to the pen where he may be effective for an inning or two

    • Eric - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:14 AM

      I have the sense hitters are just getting to the curve better, and maybe he’s attempting to adapt, hence the lower number?

      Maybe a similar situation to Stras’ FB these days?

  24. manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:51 PM

    When we play on National TV we play poorer than normal.

    • stoatva - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:52 PM

      That is demonstrably true.

    • scmargenau - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:41 AM

      Ok. Ask yourself why. Ok, now think post season. Feel good?

      We must learn to win big games and dominate rivals. If u don’t understand that…then I don’t know what to tell u.

  25. manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:54 PM

    Gio just stared for a good second saw the replay.

    Two games in a row, we take the lead and the starter immediately gave it back.

    • stoatva - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:02 AM

      Just watched it myself. It was going to be a tough play. Hayward was sprinting and even if Gio had done what he was supposed to do I have my doubts whether Espi could have hit Gio on the run from right field in time for him to find the base ahead of JH. Does not excuse his not making the effort, let’s be clear about that.

      But it’s inning over if LaRoche stays home. FP has spoken often about the way overshifts put players in strange positions where they can’t trust their reactions and have to think about what they’re going to do. Pro ball moves too fast for that.

      • Eric - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:06 AM

        +1, that need to think was clearly evident. It crossed Gio up. I think ALR ran with the play and *didnt* stop to think, and also got crossed up.

  26. manassasnatsfan - Aug 10, 2014 at 11:57 PM

    Still waiting for Gio quotes

  27. manassasnatsfan - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:02 AM

    ALR takes blame for not knowing where Espi was, that is true, but Gio’s only responsibility was to cover in case that happened.

  28. wmlsays - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:03 AM

    Hopefully, Fister will right the ship. He’s been great – not only for the tangibles, but the intangibles as well. A real leader and mentor, so it would seem.

  29. stoatva - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:05 AM

    • Eric - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:08 AM

      That’s exactly how I read the play. Espi deep, Gio decided to wait for relay. Not sure if LaRoche was trying to get to the batted ball or also be in position for a relay.

      • Eric - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:12 AM

        Er, to clarify, I don’t think Gio was clear that Espi was in position enabling him to field that, played it as though it would poke through to Werth, but then when he saw Espi get it he bolted for first.

      • stoatva - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:12 AM

        Gio needed to be there, regardless. But it wouldn’t have surprised me if Hayward was safe even if Gio had done exactly what he was supposed to. We will never know.

      • manassasnatsfan - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:14 AM

        Relay on what? Espi had the ball waiting for someone to be on first. Since ALR went for the ball Gio had to be there.

      • Eric - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:15 AM

        See my follow up. I think Gio thought it was ticketed for right. On the replay, I think when Gio breaks for first is the moment he realized that Espi fielded or was about to field the ball.

    • Rick Norris - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:14 AM

      The ball was hit directly at Espinoza. He basically did not move to field it. It was ALR’s play at first.

      • Eric - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:18 AM

        Didn’t move to field it? I may be misremembering, but I seem to recall he was rangi g to his left and had to back hand it on the move?

        Either way, if Espi was shifted and Gio and/or LaRoche weren’t clear on that, they might not have realized it if it went straight at Espi.

        Which isn’t to say its not a problem, its just a different problem (and a worse one in important ways imo) than Gio being lazy.

    • manassasnatsfan - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:24 AM

      Espi didn’t move at all the ball was right at him no way it was going to right.

      • Eric - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:36 AM

        Was Espi playing straight up? If not, I’m suggesting ALR and Gio botched the play due to lack of clarity about the shift.

        If that’s the case, the concern is more about communication and general awareness about an among the infielders.

        Espi did move, BTW, albeit he was able to square up.

        http://www.mlb.com/r/video?content_id=35273105

  30. manassasnatsfan - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:11 AM

    Still waiting the Gio quote from Mark.

  31. manassasnatsfan - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:12 AM

    William Larson and Dan Kolko both have gone to bed, Mark is the only one working.

  32. Danny - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:13 AM

    Gio notwithstanding the Braves only scored 3. Our continued inability to hit with RISP hurts.

    • Rick Norris - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:15 AM

      0-7. Six strikeouts.

    • manassasnatsfan - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:16 AM

      Absolutely. We finally started straightening that and Zim gets hurt. He is like the catalyst that makes everyone better, even when he slumping.

      Muscle injuries are usually caused by not enough stretching. Seems Zim stretches when I go to games. Span stretches way more than all the others.

  33. wmlsays - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:16 AM

    Why can’t Det start a game or two and they can rest Gio? It can’t be any worse, can it? Gio hasn’t won in a while. Still a good guy, but something is not right.

    • manassasnatsfan - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:18 AM

      Biggest difference and I have told Gio this and he denies the problem, between 2012 and now…..

      He used to always get a haircut game day.

      As superstitious as baseball players are I am shocked he hasn’t tried it.

  34. natsguy - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:24 AM

    Guess Gio was too busy grinding and tipping his cap to the Braves to cover first base.

    • manassasnatsfan - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:26 AM

      He stood. Correct not sure why LaRoche went for it, but since he did Gio was responsible to cover.

      LaRoche would have been better serve just to go to first. The whole problem would have never existed.

  35. manassasnatsfan - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:34 AM

    Well no twitter comments for last 25 minutes, they all fell asleep.

    I will watch last night’s game and then go to bed a good note.

  36. coop202 - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:39 AM

    If we are going to have a strong finish to the season we need pitchers like stras and Gio to snap out of funks (Gio has been rough 3 of the last five). I have no problem with a pitcher like Gio even with the heart-pounding innings who’s given up 1-run coming back out (getting pulled at 930… Really?). That’s mismanagement of your pen even with the day off tomorrow. The mental mistake by ALR/Gio hurts, as does leaving in the lefty once Gattis was subbed in (his l/r ops splits are ridiculous). The bigger storyline is the lack of clutch hitting tonight. Pulling a 1-run pitcher after the 4th even if he’s at 80+ just sounds like a horrible idea, but I get the residue distaste given his last four starts (not including the cue to 1-0 loss).

  37. stoatva - Aug 11, 2014 at 1:00 AM

    Braves appear to have caught a break, facing Correia and Haren in first two games, missing Kershaw altogether.

  38. wskyrnr21 - Aug 11, 2014 at 12:13 PM

    Fundamentally a bad team. Have to question the ” big marines”. Influence. Seems to have no bearing on this team. Back into the play offs and look to the future?

Archives

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.

Follow us on Twitter