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Matt Williams

  1. On a long, up-and-down day, Strasburg stands tall

    Jun 28, 2015, 8:47 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    PHILADELPHIA — A lot happened over the course of seven hours Sunday at Citizens Bank Park, where the Nationals and Phillies engaged in 18 innings of baseball, some of it good and some of it bad and some of it painful. A doubleheader split — a 3-2 victory in the opener, then an 8-5 loss…

  2. Nats hoping Desmond’s long slump is nearing its end

    Jun 26, 2015, 8:37 AM EDT

    Washington Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond (20) celebrates with his teammates after a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves at Nationals Park, Thursday, June 25, 2015, in Washington. The Nationals won 7-0. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

    You’re not supposed to glean much from a two-game stretch, especially in the context of a full baseball season. But for Ian Desmond and the Nationals, the past 48 hours have provided hope that the three-time Silver Slugger Award winner could be on the verge of ending his prolonged slump. After notching the game-winning RBI the…

  3. Janssen, Carpenter provide experience to Nats bullpen

    Jun 24, 2015, 7:29 PM EDT

    MLB: Philadelphia Phillies at Washington Nationals

    The Nationals’ bullpen has been through its fair share of changes this season, largely due to injuries up and down their pitching staff. Those circumstances have forced the Nats to at times call on rookies to come up and fill in. They have also relied heavily on second-year pros such as Aaron Barrett – who is also…

  4. Ross has been boss for Nats

    Jun 20, 2015, 12:12 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    One morning in March, Matt Williams and Steve McCatty ventured over to the minor-league complex in Viera, Fla., to watch left-hander Felipe Rivero pitch out of the bullpen. Before Rivero took the mound, though, a young right-hander named Joe Ross pitched. Ross didn’t make an overwhelming impression on the Nationals manager and pitching coach, but…

  5. Desmond gets another day off

    Jun 19, 2015, 6:49 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Ian Desmond got his first day of the season off last week in Milwaukee, but the Nationals shortstop still spent much of his time at Miller Park in work mode, whether in the batting cage or the dugout, trying to fix what has been ailing him all year. So when he decided to give Desmond…

  6. With relievers ailing, starters being pushed too far

    Jun 12, 2015, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    On Tuesday night in New York, Max Scherzer took the mound for the bottom of the seventh in a 1-1 game, his pitch count at 100, and promptly gave up the runs that put the Yankees on top for good. On Wednesday afternoon in New York, Gio Gonzalez took the mound for the bottom of…

  7. Espinosa forcing way into lineup, possibly in left field

    Jun 11, 2015, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    NEW YORK — Has it gotten to a point, Matt Williams was asked after Wednesday’s game, where the Nationals simply need to find a way to get Danny Espinosa’s bat into the lineup on a regular basis, even if it means putting him in the outfield? “Yeah, have to try to find a space for…

  8. Streaky Nats try to find some consistency

    Jun 9, 2015, 9:30 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    There was the 7-13 start to the season, which left more than a few observers concerned. Then there was the 21-6 stretch that included nine consecutive series won, leaving more than a few observers raving about the Nationals. Now, though, there is a 2-8 slump, one that has dropped the Nats out of first place…

  9. Espinosa shows off versatility by playing in left field

    Jun 8, 2015, 8:02 AM EDT

    Washington Nationals second baseman Danny Espinosa (8) heads to the clubhouse after a baseball game against the Chicago Cubs at Nationals Park, Friday, June 5, 2015, in Washington. Espinosa had a three-run homer. The Nationals won 7-5. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

    Danny Espinosa knew there was a pretty good chance he’d come off the bench in the late innings of Sunday afternoon’s game against the Chicago Cubs. He just didn’t know it’d be like this. With Michael A. Taylor moving to centerfield after Denard Span was removed due to back spasms and other options unavailable, Nationals manager…

  10. Nats lineup still searching for answers

    Jun 7, 2015, 9:32 AM EDT

    Jun 6, 2015; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond (20) reacts after striking out to end the seventh inning against the Chicago Cubs at Nationals Park. The Chicago Cubs won 4-2. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

    When the Nationals broke out for seven runs on Friday night, the hope was certainly for that momentum to carry over on Saturday in their early afternoon bout with the Cubs. Manager Matt Williams had adjusted his lineup with Ryan Zimmerman batting second and Anthony Rendon hitting cleanup. He went with the same approach on…

  11. Harper showing he can excel at ‘the little things’

    May 25, 2015, 6:00 AM EDT

    May 24, 2015; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper (34) hits a single against the Philadelphia Phillies during the first inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

    In the midst of Bryce Harper’s torrid May that has taken the baseball world by storm, it’s been easy to forget that the skill set of the Nationals’ phenom goes well beyond hitting the long ball. Just ask the Philadelphia Phillies, who saw Harper hurt them in more ways than one in the Nats’ 4-1…

  12. Pitch, hit and run (and win)

    May 23, 2015, 12:05 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    At the end of a night in which his starting pitcher tossed eight brilliant innings, recorded a key base hit and scored the eventual game-winning run, Matt Williams summed up Max Scherzer in six words. “He loves to play the game,” the Nationals manager said. Why wouldn’t Scherzer be having the time of his life…

  13. Scherzer on his start, chocolate sauce and comparing Harper to Miggy

    May 21, 2015, 12:02 PM EDT

    May 11, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Washington Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

    Through his first eight games as a Washington National, Max Scherzer is off to the best start of his career by several measures. His ERA is a pristine 1.75, good for fourth in the National League. His strikeout-to-walk ratio is 8.25, over double his career average of 3.49. He’s tied for third in the majors…

  14. Harper, Williams strongly disagree with ejections

    May 20, 2015, 10:53 PM EDT

    May 20, 2015; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper (34) looks on after being thrown out of the game in the third inning against the New York Yankees at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

    Hours after they were tossed from Wednesday night’s win over the Yankees by home plate umpire Marvin Hudson, both Nationals manager Matt Williams and right fielder Bryce Harper remained fired up about their third inning ejections. Harper and Williams were still confused as to why they were ejected in the first place. “I’m really not…

  15. Harper, Williams ejected vs. Yankees

    May 20, 2015, 8:06 PM EDT

    May 20, 2015; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper (right) and manager Matt Williams (center) react after being thrown out of the game by home plate umpire Marvin Hudson (left) in the third inning against the New York Yankees at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

    Bryce Harper and Matt Williams were both ejected in the bottom of the third inning against the New York Yankees on Wednesday night in a bizarre sequence sparked by a called first strike. Home plate umpire Marvin Hudson called a strike on the first offering from pitcher Adam Warren to Harper and the Nationals right fielder…

  16. Rendon works out at Nats Park; Williams on ‘clutch’

    May 20, 2015, 6:14 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    Anthony Rendon continued his slow recovery from a left oblique strain on Wednesday at Nationals Park, as he rejoined the team after training for several days at extended spring training in Viera, Fla. Rendon took groundballs at second base, did some running and took swings in the batting cage. Though it’s a small step, the 2014…

  17. After solid series, Zimmerman hoping to get back on track

    May 11, 2015, 9:16 AM EDT

    May 9, 2015; Washington, DC, USA;  Washington Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman (11) hits a three run home run during the fifth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

    When the Nationals were scuffling at the plate for the majority of April, the club remained confident that most of its veterans would soon begin performing up to the level of their track records. And if this past weekend is any indication, the hope is that might be the case with Ryan Zimmerman. During the…

  18. Strasburg cleared to start Tuesday

    May 10, 2015, 5:12 PM EDT

    AP

    Stephen Strasburg has been cleared by the Nationals’ medical staff to rejoin the rotation and start on Tuesday in Arizona after several days of testing his back and ankle in pregame throwing sessions at Nats Park. Max Scherzer was originally scheduled to pitch Tuesday, but he will now start the first game of the three-game…

  19. Lobaton making the most of his limited opportunities

    May 10, 2015, 7:00 AM EDT

    Apr 18, 2015; Washington, DC, USA;  Washington Nationals catcher Jose Lobaton (59) hits an RBI double during the fourth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

    While Saturday’s walk-off win will be remembered for Bryce Harper’s heroics, it was the performance of a part-time bat that underscored the true depth of the Nationals’ lineup. Backup catcher Jose Lobaton, who Matt Williams inserted into the lineup because of his previous success against Braves starter Julio Teheran, justified his manager’s faith in him…

  20. Strasburg’s status for Monday still undetermined

    May 8, 2015, 5:17 PM EDT

    AP

    Stephen Strasburg reported to Nationals Park on Friday feeling strong, his right shoulder blade having responded to chiropractic treatment, but won’t know if he’ll be able to make his next scheduled start until he first throws off a bullpen mound with no problems. Strasburg, who departed from his last start after only three innings due…

  21. UPDATE: Rendon has oblique strain; updates on Janssen & Johnson

    May 4, 2015, 10:48 PM EDT

    Rendon learns from first MLB stint

    [Updated 10:49 p.m.] Anthony Rendon has been diagnosed with an oblique strain after meeting with Nationals orthopedist Dr. Wiemi Douoguih on Monday, an injury that will end his minor league rehab assignment on terms that are anything but ideal. The 24 year old came to Washington on Monday after sitting out of games with the Double-A Harrisburg…

  22. Barrett seizing setup role while trying to manage workload

    May 4, 2015, 6:16 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    After a month spent tinkering and trying out different candidates, the Nationals may have found a reliable setup man at last in Aaron Barrett. Now, they just have to make sure they don’t run the right-hander into the ground from too much use. Barrett has become among the Nationals’ effective relievers, sporting a 1.59 ERA…

  23. Still searching for answers

    Apr 26, 2015, 5:56 PM EDT

    AP

    MIAMI — You’re never as bad as you look during a long losing streak, and you’re never as good as you look during a long winning streak, but at what point does the losing start becoming an actual reflection of what you are as a ballclub? Not after a mere 19 games, the Nationals insist.…

  24. 3 weeks in, Nats staring at 7-game division deficit

    Apr 25, 2015, 8:27 PM EDT

    AP

    MIAMI — It would be one thing if there was an obvious lack of effort, if players’ heads didn’t seem to be in the game. But that’s not the case right now for the Nationals. They’re simply not playing well. Which, in some ways, could cause frustration levels to rise even higher. “The intent is…

  25. It’s not intentional, but Harper is leading MLB in walks

    Apr 24, 2015, 6:49 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    MIAMI — From the day he was drafted, Bryce Harper seemed like a strong candidate to lead the majors in something before long, whether home runs, slugging percentage, outfield assists or something along those lines. It may come as a bit of a surprise, though, that Harper currently leads all MLB hitters in a stat…

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NL EAST STANDINGS

WLGB
WASHINGTON4234
NEW YORK40372.5
ATLANTA36406.0
MIAMI314611.5
PHILADELPHIA275015.5
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