Aug 28, 2015, 11:48 PM EDT
There is no one person responsible for the Nationals’ struggles this month. It’s never that simple. But Max Scherzer hasn’t exactly helped the cause. Which, given the way things were going earlier this summer, is pretty hard to believe. “You want to go there and compete and do everything you can to help the ballclub…
Aug 28, 2015, 9:55 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Max Scherzer taking the mound used to be a sure thing for the Nationals. These days, it’s anything but. Scherzer’s August struggles continued when the right-hander served up a pair of early homers to the Marlins, putting his team in a hole. He did bounce back to finish his night on…
Aug 28, 2015, 5:59 PM EDT
Denard Span’s injury plagued season will come to an abrupt conclusion Tuesday when the Nationals leadoff man has surgery to repair the labrum in his left hip, but the club was able to breathe a bit easier Friday when it learned Michael Taylor (Span’s backup in center field) was not seriously injured during a scary-looking…
Aug 28, 2015, 3:36 PM EDT
The Nationals suffered three blows last night, with Michael Taylor and Yunel Escobar getting hurt and Denard Span going back on the DL only two days after returning, but they did manage to win the game and their series against the Padres. They’ve won 6 of 9 now, with a chance to continue the trend…
Aug 28, 2015, 3:22 PM EDT
Desperate for healthy outfielders after both Denard Span and Michael Taylor were injured Thursday night, the Nationals recalled Matt den Dekker from Class AAA Syracuse before Friday’s series opener against the Marlins. Den Dekker officially takes the roster spot that opened up when Span was placed back on the 15-day disabled list Friday, this time…
Aug 27, 2015, 11:49 PM EDT
Denard Span’s return from the disabled list earlier this week was as big an emotional boost as the Nationals had experienced in quite some time. Which only made the center fielder’s return to the DL late Thursday night an even tougher punch to the gut. Span is out again, this time with inflammation in his…
Aug 27, 2015, 10:08 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Needing a win to take their third consecutive series — and then hoping beyond hope the Mets would actually lose a ballgame for a change — the Nationals turned to their surprising rookie right-hander and watched as he pitched yet another gem. Joe Ross allowed only one run (unearned) on one…
Aug 27, 2015, 12:49 AM EDT
There is perhaps no bigger gamble in baseball than swinging at a 3-0 pitch. It’s the ultimate high-risk, high-reward play, at times producing game-changing hits at crucial moments while at other times stopping potential rallies dead in their tracks. The Nationals, as a team, like to take that risk. They preach an aggressive approach at…
Aug 26, 2015, 10:12 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Feeling as good as they have about themselves in weeks, the Nationals took the field Wednesday night with a chance to notch their third straight series victory and post a 4-game winning streak for the first time since June. But they wound up digging themselves into a big hole early, then…
Aug 26, 2015, 6:12 PM EDT
It was never designed to happen. It just developed organically, with Jose Lobaton becoming the equivalent of Gio Gonzalez’s personal catcher over the course of the summer. Ten straight times Gonzalez took the mound to pitch, Lobaton took his spot behind the plate to catch the left-hander. Until Wednesday night, when Wilson Ramos served as…
Aug 26, 2015, 3:27 PM EDT
It’s been awhile since we talked about the Nationals and winning streaks in the same breath. Tonight, though, they have an opportunity to keep their current hot streak going, seeking to win four in a row for the first time since late June when they won eight in a row (that was the stretch that…
Aug 26, 2015, 12:34 AM EDT
There was no shortage of tangible evidence Tuesday night what the Nationals’ lineup is capable of doing now that it is complete for the first time all season. Wilson Ramos’ 2-run homer in the bottom of the second. Yunel Escobar and Ian Desmond’s 2-out RBI doubles later. And, most notably, Ryan Zimmerman’s sixth-inning grand slam…
Aug 25, 2015, 10:14 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: It took 124 games, but Matt Williams finally had the opportunity to fill out his original, projected lineup, thanks to Denard Span’s return from a two-month stay on the DL with a lower back injury. And wouldn’t you know that long-awaited, complete lineup put together one of the Nationals’ best all-around…
Aug 25, 2015, 6:14 PM EDT
In perhaps their first true concession to the difficult task they now face in overtaking the Mets for the NL East title, the Nationals have reshuffled the order of their rotation, ensuring their top three starters all line up for their Labor Day series against their division rivals. Max Scherzer, who was initially scheduled to…
Aug 25, 2015, 3:37 PM EDT
After a day off following a series win over the Brewers, the Nationals are back at it tonight, now opening a 3-game series with the Padres, still with very little margin for error in the big picture. The Nats, however, will have their expected Opening Day lineup on the field for the first time this…
Aug 25, 2015, 6:00 AM EDT
Matt Williams will get a chance to do something tonight he hasn’t been able to do since July 6: Fill out a lineup card that includes Denard Span’s name. And he very well may get a chance to do something he hasn’t been able to do at all in 2015: Fill out a lineup card…
Aug 24, 2015, 6:15 PM EDT
The Nationals are planning to activate Denard Span off the disabled list in time for Tuesday’s series opener against the Padres, a move that could give the club a full, healthy starting lineup for the first time this season. The decision to bring Span off the DL isn’t official yet because team officials are still…
Aug 23, 2015, 12:04 AM EDT
Given his lack of production — shoot, given his lack of games on the active roster — this season, it’s been easy to forget about Anthony Rendon and how good he was for the Nationals last year and how good he still can be for them the rest of this year. The young man who…
Aug 22, 2015, 9:51 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: The Nationals tried not to make too much of Friday night’s unsightly loss to the Brewers, which came on the heels of a red-eye flight from Colorado following a long West Coast trip. The proof, though, would hinge on how they played in tonight’s second game against Milwaukee. The answer: Well.…
Aug 22, 2015, 6:39 PM EDT
Yunel Escobar was out of the Nationals’ lineup Saturday night, still feeling the effects of Friday night’s collision down the third-base line with the wall and a fan seated in the front row. Escobar said he was “feeling a little better” the day after suffering the injury, via a club spokesperson, but offered no timetable…
Aug 22, 2015, 3:23 PM EDT
The sky is blue, the humidity is low, it’s a gorgeous Saturday in the District of Columbia, and there’s a ballgame to be played tonight. Can’t complain about that, right? OK, so there’s plenty to complain about right now as it pertains to the Nationals, who after dropping last night’s series opener to the Brewers…
Aug 22, 2015, 12:51 AM EDT
If the Nationals were hoping the start of a long homestead would present an opportunity to bolster any optimism still out there for a late-season surge, they sure did little Friday night to back up the sentiment. Slogging their way through an ugly ballgame against an uninspired opponent, the Nationals were clobbered 10-3 by the…
Aug 21, 2015, 11:25 PM EDT
[Updated: 11:25 p.m.] Yunel Escobar was forced to leave Friday night’s loss to the Brewers in the top of the first inning after the Nationals third baseman collided with both the railing and a fan seated down the left-field line trying to chase a foul popup. The injury was diagnosed as a hyper-extended neck, according to…
Aug 21, 2015, 10:29 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On the heels of a brutal road trip, the Nationals returned to D.C. on Friday night hoping to re-establish themselves as a legitimate contender for the NL East title. Then the game started and everything that happened afterward suggested anything but. The Nationals were rocked by a last-place Brewers club, done…
Aug 21, 2015, 3:30 PM EDT
Well, here’s one way for the Nationals to open a critical homestand: With a surprise promotion of top prospect Trea Turner from Class AAA Syracuse. That move was not expected, at least not until rosters expand on Sept. 1, but obviously Mike Rizzo felt it was time to do something that might inject some life…
FINAL NL EAST STANDINGS
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2015 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: 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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