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Denard Span

  1. Span’s hard work paying off

    Aug 4, 2014, 10:02 AM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    Cole Hamels wasn’t giving up much of anything on Sunday when Denard Span found space between Chase Utley and Ryan Howard for an RBI single in the bottom of the third inning. It pushed the center fielder’s streak of reaching base to 29 games, the longest active streak in the majors. He would later add…

  2. Instant Analysis: Nats 4, Phillies 0

    Aug 3, 2014, 4:25 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: With Stephen Strasburg and Cole Hamels on the mound, this game was billed as a pitchers duel. It did not disappoint. Both starters were sharp all afternoon, briskly mowing down their opposing lineup. The Nationals beat the Phillies 4-0, but neither starting pitcher yielded an earned run. Strasburg began the game by retiring seven…

  3. Early rally sets the tone for an 11-0 rout

    Aug 2, 2014, 11:58 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    By the fourth inning, the Nationals led by 11 runs, turning the Phillies pitching staff into mincemeat and allowing everyone to breathe a sigh of relief and just play out the string under no pressure. But when Saturday night’s game was only two batters into the bottom of the first, when the outcome was still…

  4. Instant analysis: Nats 11, Phillies 0

    Aug 2, 2014, 10:25 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: How about we just do “Game in a word” tonight? The answer is: Rout. OK, a few more details than that. The Nationals annihilated the Phillies pitching staff, starting with A.J. Burnett, who let six of the 11 batters he faced reach safely, capped by Anthony Rendon’s 3-run homer in the…

  5. Nationals Stock Watch: Roark leading rotation

    Jul 31, 2014, 1:51 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    We take a look at the Nationals’ past week, at a glance: Record: 3-3 Team slash: .231/.326/.265 Team ERA:  3.32 Runs per game: 3 STOCK UP Tanner Roark, SP: 2-0/ 1.29 ERA/ 0.64 WHIP Roark’s season thus far has been nothing short of a cinderella story. Despite the 27-year-old righty’s stigma of being a supposed “back of…

  6. Span on another second-half surge

    Jul 28, 2014, 6:35 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    MIAMI — Denard Span has done this before, bounced back from a slow start to a season to finish on a sustained tear at the plate. So even when things weren’t going as well earlier this summer as the hoped they would, prompting some public questioning of his place in the Nationals’ lineup, he used…

  7. 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…

  8. Span leading the way

    Jul 26, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    The Nationals offense has been among the best in the majors in the month of July, and lately we’ve seen exactly how integral Denard Span can be in keying their success. The Nats center fielder went 4-for-5 in the team’s 4-1 win over the Reds on Friday night, again setting the table for a lineup…

  9. Nationals Stock Watch: Strasburg’s road struggles continue

    Jul 24, 2014, 1:33 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    We take a look at the Nationals’ past week, at a glance: Record: 4-2 Team slash: .318/.361/.444 Team ERA:  3.74 Runs per game: 5.5 STOCK UP Ian Desmond, SS: .440 AVG/ .462 OBP/ .640 SLG This past week was a pretty good reminder that when he’s right, Desmond is one of the best hitting shortstops in the…

  10. 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…

  11. 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…

  12. Instant analysis: Nats 2, Cubs 1

    Jul 6, 2014, 4:49 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Needing a win to avoid their first series loss in three weeks, the Nationals looked a big sluggish. Jordan Zimmermann was effective, tossing six scoreless innings, but wasn’t especially sharp and had to be pulled due to a high pitch count. The lineup, meanwhile, scratched out a quick run off Jake…

  13. Harper, Williams give thoughts on lineup

    Jun 30, 2014, 5:48 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    Finally having Bryce Harper back in the mix on Monday, Matt Williams’ lineup card looked much like it did on Opening Day, the last time he had a roster at full health to choose from. Harper is back in left field with Ryan Zimmerman at third base, Anthony Rendon is back at second. Denard Span remains…

  14. Decision time

    Jun 30, 2014, 12:00 AM EDT

    AP

    For more than two months, Matt Williams has been waiting to fill out a lineup card that includes Bryce Harper in it. And for several weeks, the Nationals’ first-time manager has been contemplating just how much he wants to shake up the rest of his lineup as a result of Harper’s return. The time has…

  15. Instant analysis: Nats 3, Cubs 0

    Jun 28, 2014, 3:46 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: With a long day of baseball staring them in the face, the Nationals knew they needed to pour everything they had into the opener of today’s doubleheader at Wrigley Field, lest they drop their third straight to the Cubs (fourth straight overall) and face the daunting task of needing to beat…

  16. Williams has plan ready for Harper’s return

    Jun 28, 2014, 12:44 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    CHICAGO — Matt Williams today acknowledged, for the first time, that he knows what he’s going to do with the Nationals’ starting lineup once Bryce Harper returns. He’s just not ready to tell everyone what exactly that plan is. “Yeah, I’m not going to share it just yet,” the rookie manager said prior to Saturday’s…

  17. Caught in a fog

    Jun 27, 2014, 12:20 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    CHICAGO — Denard Span saw the ball go off Luis Valbuena’s bat, looked up to the sky and saw nothing but a cool fog that had enveloped Wrigley Field in the bottom of the sixth inning Thursday night. So the Nationals center fielder did the only thing he could in that moment: Throw his arms…

  18. Instant analysis: Cubs 5, Nats 3

    Jun 26, 2014, 10:46 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On a strangely fog-filled June evening at Wrigley Field, it wasn’t always easy to see things clearly. This much was clear, though: The Nationals weren’t in top form in their series opener against the last-place Cubs. Doug Fister labored, especially during a 3-run fourth inning, and allowed way more balls to…

  19. ZZZZZZZZZZimmerman saves the day for Nats in 16th

    Jun 25, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    If you couldn’t stay up til the final out was recorded at 1:34 a.m. EDT — or if you simply gave up after your TV inexplicably switched to a tummy tuck infomercial in the 14th inning — you missed a heck of a ballgame in Milwaukee last night/this morning. There were highlight-reel catches all over…

  20. Instant Analysis: Nats 4, Braves 1

    Jun 22, 2014, 4:29 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: In a season of 162 games, it’s not often a team experiences ups and downs as dramatic as the Nats have over the last four days. Entering their four-game series with the rival Braves, the Nationals lost their first two in frustrating fashion, briefly losing their grip on first place in the…

  21. Agressive baserunning pays off in Nats win

    Jun 19, 2014, 12:57 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    From the day he took over as Nationals manager, Matt Williams preached aggression on the bases. But rarely has this team put that philosophy into practice over the season’s first 2 1/2 months. Then came Wednesday night’s series finale against the Astros, a 6-5, come-from-behind victory keyed by an Anthony Rendon homer, a Nate McLouth…

  22. Observations of the Nats’ 4-1 loss in St. Louis

    Jun 15, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Remember when the Nationals were baseball’s hottest team? Well, that was three whole days ago, and you’d be surprised how much can change in only three days. After a 4-1 loss to the Cardinals last night, the Nats now find themselves in a 3-game funk. And make no mistake, it qualifies as a funk, at…

  23. Nats in midst of historic run of dominance

    Jun 10, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    When Ian Desmond launched a 3-run homer off Texas’ Colby Lewis in the bottom of the fourth back on May 30, it was immediately wondered whether that sorely needed blast would serve as the catapult that finally got the Nationals going on a prolonged hot streak. But even the most optimistic of Nationals faithful couldn’t…

  24. West Coast can’t slow down red-hot Nationals

    Jun 7, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    There’s nothing like a long, coast-to-coast flight followed by a late-night game on the other side of the country to throw a ballclub out of rhythm. So it wouldn’t have been all that surprising had the Nationals taken the field last night in San Diego and looked a bit sluggish in the opener of their…

  25. Nationals Stock Watch

    Jun 6, 2014, 11:25 AM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    We take a look at the Nationals’ past week, at a glance: Record: 5-1 Team slash: .303/.367/.498 Team ERA:  1.33 Runs per game: 6.3 STOCK UP  Ryan Zimmerman, LF: .364 AVG/2 XBH in three games (Return from thumb injury) The Nationals got a much needed boost to their lineup this week as Zimmerman made his long awaited return…

Archives

FINAL NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
x-WASHINGTON 96 66 --
ATLANTA 79 83 17.0
NEW YORK 79 83 17.0
MIAMI 77 85 19.0
PHILADELPHIA 73 89 23.0

NL POSTSEASON SCHEDULE

NL WILD CARD GAME
WED: Giants at Pirates, 8:07 p.m. (ESPN)

NLDS
FRI: Game 1, Pirates at Nats, 12:07 p.m.,
OR Giants at Nats, 3:07 p.m. (FS1)
SAT: Game 2, PIT/SF at Nats, 5:37 p.m. (FS1)
MON: Game 3, Nats at PIT/SF, TBA (MLBN)
OCT. 7: Game 4, Nats at PIT/SF, TBA (FS1)*
OCT. 9: Game 5, PIT/SF at Nats, TBA (FS1)*
*if necessary

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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