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Mark Zuckerman

  1. Consistency propels Nats to NL’s best record

    Jul 28, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    AP

    There seems to be a sense among many that the Nationals haven’t really taken off as a team this season, that there’s a much higher level of success yet to reach for a talented ballclub that hasn’t achieved its full potential. And perhaps that’s true. Maybe the Nationals are still capable of going on some…

  2. Game 102: Nats at Reds

    Jul 27, 2014, 11:22 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    After a frustrating, 1-0 loss yesterday at Great American Ball Park, the Nationals return today needing a win to take the weekend series against the Reds and continue their impressive run. They’ve either won or split nine of their last 10 series. Who better, then, to have on the mound than Doug Fister? The right-hander…

  3. Instant analysis: Reds 1, Nats 0

    Jul 26, 2014, 6:35 PM EDT

    AP

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: The Nationals have been on a tear at the plate in recent weeks, beating some decent pitchers along the way. But they hadn’t faced anyone quite like Johnny Cueto, who showed today why he has been among the NL’s most-dominant starters this season. Cueto tossed seven scoreless innings, striking out nine…

  4. Game 101: Nats at Reds

    Jul 26, 2014, 2:04 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    If you’re among those skeptics who keeps saying you’re waiting for the Nationals to go on a sustained run … well, perhaps you haven’t been paying very close attention. The Nats enter today’s game in Cincinnati having won 7 of 9 and 15 of 21. Since May 28, they are 31-17, the best record in…

  5. Ranking all 30 MLB ballparks

    Jul 24, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    MLB: Spring Training-Boston Red Sox at Minnesota Twins

    You may have noticed last week when I was covering the All-Star Game in Minneapolis that I noted Target Field was the last of the 30 current MLB ballparks I needed to visit. It’s a very cool achievement to be able to cross off my bucket list, and actually the list is even longer than…

  6. Instant analysis: Rockies 6, Nats 4

    Jul 23, 2014, 6:30 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: With an opportunity to sweep the foundering Rockies and get their 9-game road off to a stellar start, the Nationals knew they’d need to compensate for the absences of Ryan Zimmerman (who was placed on the 15-day DL with a hamstring strain), Jayson Werth (given a day off to rest his…

  7. Game 99: Nats at Rockies

    Jul 23, 2014, 12:58 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    First up, the news we all knew was coming: Ryan Zimmerman is headed to the disabled list with a strained right hamstring. The only question at this point is how long the Nationals’ third baseman will be out. It’ll be at least 15 days, obviously, and for now Zimmerman is being replaced on the active…

  8. Nats prepare for loss of Zimmerman to hamstring strain

    Jul 23, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    They managed to keep their healthy lineup intact for 17 games before injury once again befell the Nationals last night. Ryan Zimmerman strained his right hamstring legging out a grounder in the top of the sixth at Coors Field, hustle that allowed a run to score and ultimately helped the Nationals secure a 7-4 victory…

  9. Game 98: Nats at Rockies

    Jul 22, 2014, 5:19 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    When last we saw Jordan Zimmermann on a mound, he was motioning for a trainer, his right biceps muscle having cramped up. Zimmermann was confident all along he wasn’t seriously injured, and an MRI of his arm revealed no elbow or shoulder issues, only a muscle strain. He skipped the All-Star Game and had his…

  10. Healthy lineup has become NL’s most productive

    Jul 22, 2014, 9:30 AM EDT

    AP

    For months, they pined for the day they would be able to field a healthy lineup, recognizing they couldn’t truly evaluate themselves until all eight of their Opening Day starters were back together again. Well, three weeks later, the healthy Nationals now boast the NL’s most-productive lineup. Not to mention the league’s best record. With…

  11. Game 97: Nats at Rockies

    Jul 21, 2014, 5:14 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Before Bryce Harper returned to his lineup three weeks ago, Matt Williams suggested he planned to mix and match his lineups, with Ryan Zimmerman in particular bouncing around multiple positions. To date, that hadn’t really happened. Zimmerman stayed at third base. Harper stayed in left field. Denard Span stayed in center field. Anthony Rendon stayed…

  12. Resurgent Zimmerman leading productive lineup

    Jul 21, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    The Nationals pulled out Sunday’s 5-4 win over the Brewers because of the bottom-of-the-ninth heroics by Jayson Werth, whose 2-out double scored Anthony Rendon all the way from first base and gave his teammates reason to mob him in the center of the diamond. Werth’s clutch hit, though, was made possible only by Rafael Soriano’s…

  13. Hitting, running, scouting combine to produce walk-off win

    Jul 20, 2014, 7:31 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    They spend hours before each series preparing for the upcoming opponent, studying the pitchers they’ll face, going over each outfielder’s strengths and weaknesses. Oftentimes, all the preparation is for naught. But sometimes, the perfect situation presents itself to use all that advanced scouting and apply it with the game on the line. That situation came…

  14. Instant analysis: Nats 5, Brewers 4

    Jul 20, 2014, 5:15 PM EDT

    AP

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: With a chance to pick up yet another series victory, the Nationals turned to Gio Gonzalez, who had been dominant over the last few weeks. But when Gonzalez struggled to even get through the fourth inning, Matt Williams instead turned to his bullpen to pull this one off. Craig Stammen, Drew…

  15. Nats trying to solve pinch-hitting woes

    Jul 20, 2014, 12:53 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    There are few jobs in baseball tougher to master than pinch-hitting, so any evaluation of a player or a team’s performance in that realm has to be taken with a grain of salt. But facts are facts, and right now, Nationals pinch-hitters are among the worst in baseball. Collectively, they are hitting .153 as pinch-hitters,…

  16. Game 96: Brewers at Nats

    Jul 20, 2014, 11:30 AM EDT

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    The Nationals have been playing pretty good baseball for awhile now, having lost only one of their last eight series (and that one’s a bit misleading because one of their four games with the Orioles was rained out, so technically they could still salvage a split after they play the makeup game). Today, they have…

  17. Nats take down Garza with 5-run first inning

    Jul 20, 2014, 12:10 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    After watching his team rack up 11 hits Friday night yet only push two runs across the plate, Nationals manager Matt Williams could only shake his head and ponder the mysteries of this great game. “That’s baseball, dude,” he muttered following a 4-2 loss to the Brewers. Baseball taketh away, but it also giveth as…

  18. The Strasburg enigma

    Jul 19, 2014, 12:20 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    If you wanted to pick one start that seemed to epitomize Stephen Strasburg’s season, this might well have been it. Strasburg was dominant at times Friday night, striking out nine Brewers while walking only one. Yet he was done in by a couple of home runs and a key, 2-out, 2-run single that ultimately left…

  19. Instant analysis: Brewers 4, Nats 2

    Jul 18, 2014, 10:07 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: The Nationals entered the All-Star break playing some of their best baseball of the season. They came out of their 4-day vacation a bit on the sluggish side. Stephen Strasburg served up a pair of early homers and despite settling down and churning out seven innings still departed with his team…

  20. Zimmermann on track to start Tuesday

    Jul 18, 2014, 5:04 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Jordan Zimmermann is on track to start Tuesday night for the Nationals in Colorado after playing catch Thursday and feeling no discomfort in his right arm. Zimmermann, who pulled himself out of his last start in Philadelphia with cramping in his biceps, took time off during the All-Star break to let the muscle rest and…

  21. Game 94: Brewers at Nats

    Jul 18, 2014, 3:30 PM EDT

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    After four long days off, the baseball season resumes tonight, with the Nationals opening a brief, 3-game homestand against the Brewers before heading out on the road. Given the opportunity to reset his rotation over the All-Star break, Matt Williams decided to give the ball to Stephen Strasburg for the second-half opener. Strasburg will be…

  22. Second half storylines

    Jul 18, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    After four long days without baseball (at least, anything other than the exhibition variety) the Nationals are back on the field tonight, hosting the Brewers in a nice weekend showdown between first-place clubs. Thus begins the unofficial second half of the season, the final 70-game stretch that will determine whether this team returns to the…

  23. First-half report card

    Jul 17, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Yes, I fully understand the first half of the 2014 baseball season ended more than two weeks ago and that at this point the Nationals have played 57 percent of their regular-season schedule. To which I say: So what? There weren’t a bunch of days off following Game 81 that required creative blog post ideas…

  24. A brief-but-eventful All-Star appearance for Clippard

    Jul 16, 2014, 1:32 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    MINNEAPOLIS — Tyler Clippard was minding his own business out in the visitors bullpen at Target Field, chatting with other pitchers on the NL All-Star squad, unsure if he would be appearing in this game at all. And then the call came, and the Nationals right-hander found himself warming up in a hurry, needed to…

  25. Instant analysis: AL 5, NL 3

    Jul 15, 2014, 11:32 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Everyone knew coming in what the 85th Midsummer Classic would be all about: Derek Jeter. And the Yankees shortstop didn’t disappoint in his 14th and final All-Star Game appearance. Afforded no fewer than three standing ovations, he rose to the occasion by going 2-for-2 with a double and a single, also…

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 57 45 --
ATLANTA 57 48 1.5
MIAMI 51 53 7.0
NEW YORK 50 55 8.5
PHILADELPHIA 46 59 12.5
Through Sunday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
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.
FRI: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Phillies at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SUN: Phillies at Nats, 1:35 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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