Sep 17, 2014, 11:30 PM EDT
ATLANTA — On the day after they clinched the NL East title, they rested. Having expended significant amounts of effort both physical and mental over the last six months to win their division — and having celebrated the accomplishment deep into Wednesday morning — members of the Nationals starting lineup were given a collective day…
Sep 17, 2014, 9:52 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: They won the NL East title Tuesday and celebrated deep into the night, so Matt Williams decided to give all of his regulars Wednesday night off. Really, all of them. The Nationals fielded a lineup made up entirely of veteran backups and September call-ups, with rookie Blake Treinen getting the ball…
Sep 17, 2014, 6:36 PM EDT
ATLANTA — Though the lineup they fielded Wednesday night wouldn’t suggest it, the Nationals say they will play most of their regulars over the final week and a half of the regular season and attempt to secure home-field advantage throughout the National League playoffs. Manager Matt Williams gave all of his regulars Wednesday’s game off,…
Sep 17, 2014, 3:34 PM EDT
ATLANTA — Contrary to what you might think when you look at tonight’s lineup, the Nationals are not playing a split-squad game in Lake Buena Vista. They are indeed playing an actual Major League Baseball game in Atlanta. It counts in the standings and everything. You just won’t find any regulars on the field. Matt…
Sep 17, 2014, 2:30 PM EDT
ATLANTA — Nearly every member of the Nationals organization made a point last night, amid the flowing champagne and beer and other chaos that ensued, to say their clinching of the NL East title is only the first step toward what they hope are several more celebrations to come in the next few weeks. Most…
Sep 17, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT
ATLANTA — When the Nationals clinched their first-ever NL East title two years ago, the ensuing celebration stayed mostly on the field at Nationals Park, where fans could soak it all in along with the players. This time, the Nats clinched the division on the road, so everything was confined to the visitors’ clubhouse at…
Sep 16, 2014, 9:48 PM EDT
Updated at 11:55 p.m. ATLANTA — It wasn’t supposed to be this easy. Sure, the Nationals entered 2014 as consensus favorites to win the NL East on the heels of a disappointing, 86-win season. But most teams don’t just run away with a division title, certainly not when they’re deadlocked with their chief rivals as…
Sep 16, 2014, 3:25 PM EDT
ATLANTA — They gathered in Viera, Fla., seven months ago with this in mind, then survived the grind of spring training and a long baseball season to put themselves on the precipice of a division title. And tonight, the Nationals have a chance to do something they didn’t get to do even when they won…
Sep 16, 2014, 1:54 PM EDT
ATLANTA BRAVES Simply put, it’s not looking good for Atlanta’s postseason chances. In a week in which their season was on the line in each and every game, the Braves dropped five of six and are perilously close to elimination. They’re now 4 1/2 games out of the second wild card spot and there’s no reason to…
Sep 16, 2014, 10:14 AM EDT
ATLANTA — It unfortunately got overshadowed amid the EKG that was the bottom of the ninth inning last night, but it should not be lost altogether: Stephen Strasburg pitched one of the best games of his life to beat the Braves and put the Nationals on the cusp of the NL East title. And given…
Sep 16, 2014, 12:45 AM EDT
ATLANTA — As the ball screamed off B.J. Upton’s bat, made a beeline for Ian Desmond and then ricocheted off the shortstop’s mitt, everybody inside Turner Field had one or two quick thoughts racing through the mind. Perhaps Wilson Ramos’ reaction best summed how anyone affiliated in any way with the Nationals felt at that…
Sep 15, 2014, 10:17 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: The Nationals arrived in Atlanta knowing they were on the verge of the NL East title. All they needed to do was exorcise one last demon: A Braves club that has been in a tailspin for the last month. For those who have watched this team stumble and bumble its way…
Sep 15, 2014, 5:59 PM EDT
ATLANTA — Ryan Zimmerman participated in a full workout Monday at the Nationals’ spring training complex in Viera, and the injured third baseman now will begin playing in simulated games in anticipation of returning from a major hamstring strain for the final week of the regular season. Zimmerman is slated to play three innings at…
Sep 15, 2014, 3:37 PM EDT
ATLANTA — Hello from Turner Field, where the Nationals hope to be celebrating something special before they leave town late Wednesday night. They’ll need to take 2 of 3 from the reeling Braves — as MLB.com’s Mark Bowman figured out, Atlanta is only 1/2-game better than Houston since April 29 — to clinch the NL…
Sep 15, 2014, 1:11 PM EDT
Top storylines: Magic number is at 4 – Thanks to a successful weekend in New York for the Nationals and a Texas Rangers’ sweep of the Braves, the Nats have a very good chance to clinch the NL East in Atlanta this week. The magic number is at 4, meaning they would secure the division with…
Sep 15, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT
It seemed like a long shot at best, clinching the NL East title in Atlanta on the turf of the club that wore last year’s division crown and has been a thorn in the side of this franchise for some time. Yet here the Nationals find themselves, opening a 3-game series at Turner Field tonight,…
Sep 11, 2014, 9:15 AM EDT
Five days after getting temporarily removed from his job as closer, and two days after throwing a bullpen to tweak his mechanics, Rafael Soriano appeared in the Nats’ 6-2 loss to the Braves on Sunday in a low-leverage situation to continue searching for a fix. It was the top of the eighth inning and it…
Sep 10, 2014, 9:15 PM EDT
Say this for Matt Williams: His never-look-back, never-look-ahead mantra has permeated through the entire Nationals clubhouse in his first season as manager. Williams has refused throughout to discuss much of anything involving events or decisions that come on future dates, and his players have picked up on it along the way, never letting themselves get…
Sep 10, 2014, 7:08 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: It’s not often the Nationals find themselves with an opportunity to sweep the Braves. They hadn’t actually pulled that feat off since 2012, not at home since 2008. They still haven’t done it after a fairly lifeless performance this afternoon in the series finale against their division rivals. With Ian Desmond…
Sep 10, 2014, 2:39 PM EDT
With their series against the Braves in hand, and an 11-game road trip up ahead, the Nationals are resting both Anthony Rendon and Ian Desmond on Wednesday with minor ailments. Rendon has flu-like symptoms, similar to what sidelined Adam LaRoche a week prior. Desmond is out with lower back tightness after leaving Tuesday’s game with…
Sep 10, 2014, 12:28 PM EDT
The Nationals have an opportunity today to do something they haven’t done in quite some time: sweep the Braves. They haven’t done it since May 2012 at Turner Field, when Chien-Ming Wang got the win in relief, Steve Lombardozzi led off and played left field, Rick Ankiel drove in two runs and Jesus Flores was…
Sep 10, 2014, 12:43 AM EDT
There was a time, not all that long ago, when the Nationals could do no right when placed on the same baseball diamond as the Braves. They gave up runs in bunches. They failed to deliver hits with men on base. They botched plays in the field. If there was a way to lose a…
Sep 9, 2014, 10:07 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: With a chance to put another nail in the Braves’ coffin, the Nationals broke out the hammer right away tonight. They scored four runs in the bottom of the first off Ervin Santana, then added another in the second to open up a commanding 5-0 lead and leave their NL East…
Sep 9, 2014, 3:22 PM EDT
In a sense, the only thing the Nationals really needed to do this week was beat the Braves once. They did that last night, so if you want to look at it this way, anything they do now is gravy. Matt Williams and Co., of course, don’t think of things that way, so don’t expect…
Sep 9, 2014, 1:06 PM EDT
ATLANTA BRAVES With just 18 games left on the schedule, the time is now for Atlanta to make a late-season push to get to the playoffs. Hopes of winning a division title for the second straight year are rapidly fading with the Nationals leading the NL East by eight games, but the wild card is…
NL EAST STANDINGS
Through Sunday's games
NL PLAYOFFS STANDINGS
y-Clinched playoff berth
Through Sunday's early games
TUE: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
THU: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
FRI: Marlins at Nats (DH), 1:05 p.m., 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Marlins at Nats, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Marlins at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
Full season schedule
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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- As October looms, Strasburg and Nats are peaking
- Strasburg solves struggles in Miami, Nats win 2-1
- Barrett's role expanding with September surge
- Strasburg starts, but several regulars sit today
- As Nats hold breath, Zimmerman passes test
- Nationals win in Zimmerman's return
- Zimmerman begins race to get ready for October
- Zimmerman's back as Nationals face Marlins
- The Baseball Show: Are Nats favorites in National League? (VIDEO)