Apr 17, 2015, 10:20 AM EDT
It may have been a little in-game redemption, but Michael Taylor sure didn’t see it that way. Despite delivering the game’s decisive blow — a fifth inning solo shot off Cole Hamels to break a 2-2 tie — the talented 24-year-old rookie centerfielder was still lamenting a fourth inning gaffe that could have cost the…
Apr 15, 2015, 12:03 AM EDT
BOSTON — This was the night. This was the night the Nationals were going to snap out of their early season funk, using a 6-run rally that was as stunning as it was sudden to catapult them back into the team they’re supposed to be and put this awful week of baseball behind them once…
Apr 13, 2015, 8:28 PM EDT
BOSTON — Matt Williams, perhaps as agitated by his team’s play as he has been since becoming Nationals manager 18 months ago, was asked if Monday’s debacle of a loss to the Red Sox — officially 9-4 but not nearly as competitive as that score would suggest — might serve as a wake-up call to…
Apr 12, 2015, 12:20 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Danny Espinosa spent the entire spring hitting right-handed against right-handed pitching, acknowledging his long-term struggles from the left side of the plate, recognizing his best (and possibly only) hope of sticking in the big leagues was to give up switch-hitting. But when given his first opportunity of the season to face a right-handed…
Apr 12, 2015, 12:32 AM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — The theme inside the Nationals’ clubhouse following Saturday night’s 3-2, 10-inning loss to the Phillies — a loss that left this team a surprising 1-4 to begin a season of sky-high expectations — was universal. “I think we’ll be fine,” manager Matt Williams said. “That’s all I’m going to say about it. I…
Apr 11, 2015, 11:00 AM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Had Matt Williams, on April 10, 2014, found himself in the exact same situation he found himself in during the seventh inning on April 10, 2015 — bases loaded, one out, the Nationals clinging to a 1-run lead — he wouldn’t have needed to think much about which member of his bullpen to…
Apr 8, 2015, 5:22 PM EDT
Wednesday’s pregame press conference with Nationals manager Matt Williams brought good news for both Jayson Werth and Denard Span, two outfielders who remain out of the Nats’ lineup as they recover from surgeries. Werth, who is coming back from Jan. 9 surgery to repair the AC joint in his right shoulder, will head to Potomac…
Apr 7, 2015, 3:44 PM EDT
If the preseason predictions are to be believed, the Washington Nationals are supposed to waltz through the National League East without much resistance. After all, they have what is widely considered to be the best starting rotation in the game to go along with a balanced lineup that, when healthy, should be able to score…
Apr 6, 2015, 2:52 PM EDT
Jayson Werth remains sidelined as the Nationals open their 2015 season Monday against the New York Mets, though he was apparently close to making the Opening Day lineup. Manager Matt Williams said he and Werth had a discussion in recent days about him potentially being in the lineup. As Monday approached, however, they decided to…
Apr 6, 2015, 1:50 PM EDT
Center fielder Denard Span will play in a simulated game at Nationals Park on Tuesday with plans to take swings against live pitching for the first time since undergoing core muscle surgery on March 9. Span, 31, has played in two minor league exhibition games on defense. He played three innings on both Saturday and…
Apr 5, 2015, 8:00 PM EDT
After three months of hype and praise, and five spring training starts, Monday will afford Max Scherzer his first opportunity to show the Nationals what they paid for this offseason. The 30-year-old right-hander was given a record $210 million contract, further cementing the Nationals as 2015 World Series favorites. But before they prove all the…
Apr 5, 2015, 10:58 AM EDT
Clint Robinson, 30 years old and a veteran of eight seasons in minor league baseball, has appeared in just 13 MLB games since getting drafted in the 25th round by the Kansas City Royals back in 2007. He has just 14 career plate appearances in the majors and has spent most of the last decade in…
Apr 4, 2015, 6:40 PM EDT
The Nationals have all but decided their Opening Day roster, though the team plans to make an official announcement on Sunday. And despite their unwillingness to confirm it, veteran Dan Uggla is almost certain to make the team. Uggla himself has not been told either way, but is simply happy with the way the last few…
Apr 4, 2015, 5:05 PM EDT
Within minutes of their final exhibition game of 2015 spring training, the Nationals informed 30-year-old Clint Robinson he had made the Opening Day roster. Veterans Mike Carp and Rich Hill, on the other hand, have been reassigned to Triple-A Syracuse. The Nationals will not announce officially their 25-man roster until Sunday, but choosing to send…
Apr 4, 2015, 1:07 PM EDT
Just 48 hours before the Nationals open their 2015 season against the New York Mets, manager Matt Williams sounded optimistic about the progress of Jayson Werth’s recovery. Werth had surgery on January 9 to repair the A/C joint in his right shoulder. Since he has slowly moved forward in his rehab, which will almost certainly…
Mar 28, 2015, 6:00 AM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — Two more observations from Friday’s 1-1 tie against the Cardinals, unrelated to each other… — Drew Storen made his return to the mound, exactly two weeks removed from surgery to remove the broken hamate bone from his left hand. What looked like it could be a quick and tidy top of the…
Mar 25, 2015, 6:00 AM EDT
JUPITER, Fla. — We have officially reached the home stretch of spring training, with 10 remaining exhibition games (nine in Florida, one in D.C.) over the next 12 days before the 2015 season begins for real at Nationals Park. Which means it’s finally time to start trying to figure out who exactly is going to…
Mar 3, 2015, 4:27 PM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — The Nationals’ final two workouts of the spring before the Grapefruit League gets underway Thursday are fairly light affairs. Pitchers aren’t throwing off mounds. There are some defensive fundamental drills early on, then casual rounds of batting practice that keep everybody loose. And nobody was looser Tuesday during BP than Bryce Harper…
Mar 2, 2015, 10:30 AM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — There is no more prevailing trend in baseball right now than the use of more defensive shifts, a tactical maneuver that has been deployed by teams for a century but has exploded in the last couple of years. Except in Washington. Despite their use of analytics in plenty of other areas, the…
Feb 28, 2015, 1:05 PM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — The Nationals had managed to avoid Mother Nature’s worst since opening camp last week, squeezing a couple of workouts in between storms and intense wind, but their luck ran out Saturday. Heavy and persistent rain forced the team to essentially call off its planned daily workout. Pitchers did still play catch in…
Feb 27, 2015, 10:18 AM EDT
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…
Feb 24, 2015, 5:48 PM EDT
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,…
Feb 23, 2015, 8:24 PM EDT
Ryan Zimmerman showed up early to Nationals spring training ready to get started for the 2015 season. This is, of course, not a normal camp for Zimmerman, who now transitions across the diamond to first base. This spring will give him his first extensive stretch getting experience at his new position. Manager Matt Williams gave…
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…
Feb 23, 2015, 1:08 PM EDT
In Mark’s latest report from Nationals spring training in Viera, Fla., he looks at who could be the odd-man out of their star-studded rotation. Right now there are six players vying for five spots, meaning someone will likely get bumped to the bullpen within the next few weeks. In this video Mark has reaction from Max…
NL EAST STANDINGS
THE BASEBALL SHOW
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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- Impressive Scherzer giving Nats lots of innings
- Nats 7, Phillies 2: Harper homers, Scherzer cruises
- Escobar leaves Nats game with strained groin
- Stammen on season-ending surgery: "Bring it on"
- Marlins catcher not happy after getting benched: 'Yeah I’m mad'
- Nats hope to keep bats rolling vs. Phillies
- MLB Power Rankings: Red Sox, Dodgers flying high
- Nats' offense continues to roll in win vs. Phillies
- Michael Taylor showing Nats glimpses of his potential
- Fister gets the better of Hamels in 5-2 win in Philadelphia