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Mark Zuckerman

  1. Do the Nats need another lefty bench bat?

    Feb 27, 2015, 6:44 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    VIERA, Fla. — There aren’t many jobs up for grabs this spring, but there is at least one interesting question for the Nationals to contemplate when assembling their Opening Day bench: How many left-handed bats do they need? The Nats’ projected lineup, as has been noted, will feature only two left-handed hitters: Denard Span and…

  2. News, notes and observations from Friday’s workout

    Feb 27, 2015, 4:22 PM EDT


    VIERA, Fla. — Those of you still dealing with real winter back north won’t have any sympathy, but it was downright miserable today in Viera. The Nationals’ morning workout was conducted under gray skies that produced on-and-off rain, with temperatures in the low-50s and a strong wind howling from the north, with no tall structures…

  3. Williams sets the tone on Day 1

    Feb 27, 2015, 10:18 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    VIERA, Fla. — Matt Williams likes to post a “Quote of the Day” each morning at the top of the workout schedule that hangs in the Nationals’ spring training clubhouse. Sometimes they’re inspirational sayings, sometimes they’re relayed to baseball, sometimes they’re not. The quote that was posted Thursday, on the morning of the Nationals’ first…

  4. Werth shooting for opener but will err on side of caution

    Feb 26, 2015, 7:19 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    VIERA, Fla. — Jayson Werth is hoping his surgically repaired shoulder will be fully healed in time for Opening Day, but the veteran Nationals outfielder said he’s willing to spend the first week or two of the season on the disabled list if he’s not yet 100 percent healthy. “That’s kind of my goal,” Werth…

  5. Escobar “100 percent committed” to playing second base

    Feb 26, 2015, 5:02 PM EDT

    Mitch Tischler / Comcast SportsNet

    VIERA, Fla. — Yunel Escobar’s first 24 hours in a Nationals uniform included a meeting with Matt Williams and Mike Rizzo, plenty of work at second base and plenty of time getting to know his teammates. The end result of all that: An upbeat veteran ready to embrace his new position and do his part…

  6. Harper’s confidence a good sign for Nats

    Feb 26, 2015, 9:49 AM EDT


    VIERA, Fla. — The clubhouse at Space Coast Stadium this morning was alive for the first time this spring, with pitchers, catchers and position players all together at last, chatting and laughing in advance of the Nationals’ first full-team meeting and workout. One of the TVs happened to show footage of Bryce Harper’s epic media…

  7. A year older, Rendon ready for the long grind

    Feb 26, 2015, 6:00 AM EDT


    VIERA, Fla. — So many things come so easy to Anthony Rendon on a baseball field, it’s easy to forget just how little experience he has. Even to this day, Rendon has played only 352 games as a professional ballplayer, 251 of those in the major leagues. The Nationals’ young star has been forced to…

  8. Harper oozes confidence on first day in camp

    Feb 25, 2015, 6:39 PM EDT


    VIERA, Fla. — Bryce Harper reported for spring training on Wednesday and wasted no time letting the world know just how confident he is in himself, the Nationals’ star-studded rotation and the roster as a whole entering fourth big-league season. Over the span of a 12 1/2-minute session with media members in the dugout at…

  9. Full roster has reported, but Werth still rehabbing

    Feb 25, 2015, 3:17 PM EDT

    AP file photo

    VIERA, Fla. — All 70 players invited by the Nationals to big-league camp have reported, but at least one prominent regular won’t be able to participate entirely at Thursday’s first full-squad workout of the spring. Jayson Werth, who had arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder January 9, will be held back from full participation for…

  10. After whirlwind rookie year, Treinen finds comfort zone

    Feb 25, 2015, 10:31 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    VIERA, Fla. — Blake Treinen isn’t an overly gregarious person by nature, which only made his presence at spring training last year less noticeable. Treinen was given the last locker by the door at one end of the Nationals’ clubhouse at Space Coast Stadium, a spot typically reserved for minor leaguers who don’t figure to…

  11. Williams on 8th inning, position players and Babe Ruth

    Feb 24, 2015, 5:48 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    VIERA, Fla. — Matt Williams was asked Tuesday if he’s ever going to actually perform his Babe Ruth impersonation, as promised last season when his Nationals won 10 straight games. The manager’s answer was, well, let’s just say it was convoluted. More on that in a little bit. In the meantime, here are some news,…

  12. With trade still not official, Turner reports to Padres camp

    Feb 24, 2015, 3:53 PM EDT


    VIERA, Fla. — Trea Turner, the prized shortstop prospect acquired by the Nationals during the offseason, reported for spring training on Tuesday … but not in Florida. Turner reported to Peoria, Ariz., home of the San Diego Padres, who remain Turner’s official employer for another four months. Because of a quirky MLB rule that rarely…

  13. VIDEO: Nats try to reconfigure bullpen minus Clippard

    Feb 24, 2015, 1:15 PM EDT


    Among the Nationals’ biggest challenges this spring is reconfiguring their bullpen after trading Tyler Clippard (and letting Rafael Soriano leave as a free agent). They recognize they can’t fully replace Clippard, one of the best and most-consistent relievers in baseball, but they also like the options they have to fill that role. In this video…

  14. Zimmerman healthy, at peace with move to first base

    Feb 24, 2015, 10:09 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    VIERA, Fla. — Ryan Zimmerman’s body is healthy, that is, as healthy as 30-year-old with 1,198 big-league games of wear and tear can be. Just as significant, Zimmerman’s mind is at ease as he begins his 10th spring training with the Nationals, his first as anything other than a third baseman. “All good things come…

  15. News, notes and observations from Monday in Viera

    Feb 23, 2015, 5:46 PM EDT


    VIERA, Fla. — Though position players don’t officially report until Tuesday and don’t hold their first official workout til Thursday, nearly every one of them has already arrived in Viera. So the attention right now is kind of split between the pitchers and catchers out on the practice fields and the position players taking part…

  16. Desmond: “I’m going to enjoy this ride”

    Feb 23, 2015, 2:12 PM EDT

    AP file photo

    VIERA, Fla. — Ian Desmond doesn’t know if 2015 will be his final season with the Nationals. But he knows it could be, and so the veteran shortstop plans to savor every moment of his 12th (and possibly last) year with the only organization that has ever employed him. “I’m going to enjoy this ride,”…

  17. Zimmerman reports, gets right to work at first base

    Feb 23, 2015, 9:55 AM EDT

    Mitch Tischler / CSN Washington

    VIERA, Fla. — Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman — that’s a title everyone’s still going to have to get used to — reported to spring training Monday morning and wasted no time getting to work at learning his new position. Zimmerman arrived in the clubhouse at Space Coast Stadium before 8 a.m. and within an…

  18. VIDEO: McCatty on coaching Nats’ talented pitching staff

    Feb 23, 2015, 6:00 AM EDT


    VIERA, Fla. — The attention is lavished upon the members of the Nationals’ pitching staff, particularly the five (or more) starters that will make up perhaps baseball’s best rotation in 2015. The one man in charge of preparing them all, though, is Steve McCatty. Now entering his seventh season as Nationals pitching coach, McCatty has…

  19. Uggla hopes better vision helps revive career with Nats

    Feb 22, 2015, 6:37 PM EDT


    VIERA, Fla. — Dan Uggla doesn’t hide from it, and he certainly doesn’t try to sugarcoat it. The veteran slugger knows he was an absolutely awful baseball player the last couple years, one who somehow plummeted from being an All-Star second baseman with five consecutive 30-homer seasons to perhaps the worst hitter in the game.…

  20. News and notes from Sunday’s workout

    Feb 22, 2015, 4:22 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    VIERA, Fla. — The second pitchers and catchers workout of the spring saw everybody switch routines from Saturday’s first session. Pitchers who threw off the bullpen mounds Saturday went through fundamental drills Sunday, and vice versa. Among the biggest names who toed the rubber were Jordan Zimmermann, Doug Fister and Gio Gonzalez. The three pitchers…

  21. Roark ready and willing to do whatever Nats want

    Feb 22, 2015, 9:59 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    VIERA, Fla. — Tanner Roark will prepare this spring as though he’ll be a starter come Opening Day. But that likely won’t be the case unless somebody else from the Nationals’ star-studded rotation gets hurt or is traded. So, Roark probably is destined for a long-relief role. Except that’s not exactly the best way to…

  22. News and notes from Saturday’s workout

    Feb 21, 2015, 5:50 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    VIERA, Fla. — It turned into quite an eventful day here. Much of the news had little to do with the Nationals’ first pitchers and catchers workout of the spring — Matt Williams’ 2016 option getting picked up, Jordan Zimmermann talking about his contract status, Danny Espinosa swinging right-handed vs. a right-handed pitcher — but…

  23. Espinosa will hit righty majority of the time this spring

    Feb 21, 2015, 5:11 PM EDT


    VIERA, Fla. — Danny Espinosa will bat right-handed against right-handed pitchers the majority of the time this spring, attempting to give up switch-hitting and revive his career, manager Matt Williams said Saturday. Espinosa, a switch-hitter most of his life, will make the change at the urging of the Nationals, who have seen the infielder struggle…

  24. UPDATED: Zimmermann: Contract talks “on hold right now”

    Feb 21, 2015, 1:44 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Updated at 4:36 p.m. VIERA, Fla. — Though he’s willing to engage with the Nationals if they initiate talks this spring, Jordan Zimmermann says no progress has been made on a long-term extension with the club. And he continues to maintain he won’t negotiate once Opening Day arrives. “I’m just getting ready for the season,”…

  25. Workouts begin today

    Feb 21, 2015, 10:00 AM EDT


    VIERA, Fla. — Pitchers and catchers have reported (all 37 of them). They’ve taken and passed their physicals (all 37 of them). Which means there’s only one thing left to do: Play ball! OK, so there won’t be any actual (exhibition) games played for another 12 days, but this morning the Nationals will take the…



*Through Monday's games


Mark joins Rob Carlin and Joe Orsulak every Sunday at 10:30 p.m. to recap everything happening with the Nats and across baseball.


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 Click here for past audio clips.

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