Dec 11, 2013, 2:04 PM EDT
Nationals manager Matt Williams knows he is taking over a team with sky-high expectations. After winning 98 games in 2012 the Nats took a big step back by missing the playoffs with only 86 victories in 2013. Williams says the team hopes to reach their full potential in 2014, and make amends for what happened this…
Dec 11, 2013, 11:36 AM EDT
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Though he has remained out of sight since managing the final game of the season in Arizona, Davey Johnson remains a member of the Nationals’ organization. The 70-year-old former skipper officially is listed as a consultant in the club’s baseball operations department, and general manager Mike Rizzo has repeatedly said…
Dec 10, 2013, 6:04 PM EDT
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — On Tuesday morning, two Nationals sources downplayed trade talks involving Tyler Clippard or Drew Storen. On Tuesday afternoon, Mike Rizzo shot down the notion he’s even received a formal offer for either reliever. Or center fielder Denard Span. “We haven’t been fielding all that many calls on Clippard and Storen,”…
Dec 10, 2013, 2:57 PM EDT
The Nationals have already made what many expect to be their biggest moves of the offseason, acquiring Doug Fister to strengthen their rotation and Nate McLouth to bolster their bench. There still remains, however, a vacancy in their bullpen where the Nationals would like to add at least one left-handed relief pitcher. Mark caught up…
Dec 10, 2013, 8:41 AM EDT
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — After a strong bounce-back season in Baltimore, Nate McLouth figured to sign with a club this winter that would offer him the chance to win an everyday job. The Nationals, of course, had no such opportunity with Bryce Harper, Jayson Werth and Denard Span all entrenched in the outfield. But…
Dec 9, 2013, 7:54 PM EDT
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Conventional wisdom, entering the Winter Meetings, suggested the Nationals were in the market for a veteran backup catcher, someone who could be a reliable No. 2 behind Wilson Ramos. Mike Rizzo, though, appeared to quash that line of thinking on Monday, saying he believes Ramos can start 125 or more…
Dec 9, 2013, 6:43 PM EDT
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Though he admits he’s “actively” trying to acquire a left-handed reliever, Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo suggested he isn’t facing any urgency to make a move this week during the Winter Meetings. “I think we’re going to take our time with it and get the right fit and see where…
Dec 9, 2013, 6:00 AM EDT
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Hello from the Dolphin Resort at Walt Disney World, where the Winter Meetings officially open for business this morning. That’s assuming everyone made it out of the snow/ice up north. By all accounts, it appears everyone associated with the Nationals did make it, including your trusty beat writer, who was…
Dec 7, 2013, 9:00 AM EDT
The Nationals have already addressed their need for another starting pitcher, trading for Doug Fister on Monday night. Then they closed out the week by bolstering their bench with the signing of Nate McLouth late Friday afternoon. So, what’s left for Mike Rizzo and Co. to do once they arrive in Orlando on Sunday for…
Dec 3, 2013, 12:24 PM EDT
General manager Mike Rizzo just wrapped up a conference call with reporters a few minutes ago. Obviously, last night’s trade for Doug Fister was the primary topic of discussion, but Rizzo also addressed some other issues, including the competition for No. 5 starter, the state of things at second base and the continued desire to…
Dec 3, 2013, 9:00 AM EDT
Mike Rizzo was determined to bolster the Nationals’ rotation this winter, and he didn’t sound too keen on going back to the same free-agent well he delved into the last two offseasons. No, it became obvious early on the Nats’ general manager wanted to acquire a starter via trade, perhaps one not all that dissimilar…
Nov 21, 2013, 3:50 PM EDT
The Nationals signed reliever Daniel Stange, one of Mike Rizzo’s former draft picks in Arizona who pitched this season at Class AAA with two different franchises, to a minor-league contract. Stange, who turns 28 next month, is a husky (6-foot-2, 210 pounds) right-hander who has made seven career big-league appearances (four with the Diamondbacks in…
Nov 21, 2013, 1:09 PM EDT
The Nationals have made several alterations to their scouting and player development departments in the wake of Roy Clark’s departure for Los Angeles, announcing several front office promotions on Thursday. Clark, who had served as assistant general manager and vice president of player personnel since 2009, left the Nationals to join the Dodgers earlier this…
Nov 21, 2013, 9:00 AM EDT
Before the offseason really heats up — I mean, heats up here in D.C. Based on last night’s earth-shattering trade, I’d say the offseason is now in full swing in both Detroit and Texas — it’s perhaps worth one final look back at last offseason. The Nationals didn’t conduct many transactions during the 2012-13 winter,…
Nov 18, 2013, 1:56 PM EDT
Age on Opening Day 2014: 26 How acquired: Draft (3rd round), June 2008 MLB service time: 2 years, 113 days 2013 salary+bonuses: $526,250 Contract status: Arbitration-eligible in 2014, free agent in 2017 2013 Stats: 44 G, 167 PA, 158 AB, 11 R, 25 H, 9 2B, 3 HR, 12 RBI, SB, 4 BB, 47 SO, .158 BA, .465 OPS, 27 OPS+,…
Nov 14, 2013, 6:00 AM EDT
If you’ve ventured outside the last couple of days and felt the shock of a cold, sustained wind strike your face, you know we’ve been getting a early taste of winter here in the D.C. area. And if you’ve been following news out of the baseball world the last week or so, you also know…
Nov 13, 2013, 6:00 AM EDT
It’s no secret Mike Rizzo would like to acquire another starting pitcher this winter, and it’s clear the Nationals general manager is willing (if not eager) to explore the trade market for such a pitcher. And there are two legitimately elite starters out there right now who could be dealt: David Price and Max Scherzer.…
Nov 12, 2013, 6:00 AM EDT
The Nationals can’t begrudge Trent Jewett for leaving the organization and accepting a job as the Mariners’ new bench coach. Jewett has longstanding ties to Lloyd McClendon and wanted to become the new Seattle manager’s right-hand man, giving up his third base coaching job in D.C. There’s nothing wrong with that, and the Nationals won’t…
Nov 5, 2013, 4:48 PM EDT
Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo conducted a thorough search to replace Davey Johnson in the Nats’ dugout, and in the end went with a man he has a long history with. In comes Matt Williams who has been on Rizzo’s radar for years as a potential skipper. Mark caught up with Rizzo at last Friday’s…
Nov 5, 2013, 6:00 AM EDT
There is much we already know about Matt Williams. We know he was an intense competitor during his 17 big-league seasons. We know he is an excellent communicator based on his post-playing career as a broadcaster and coach. And we know he believes in the importance of defense based on his own track record (four…
Nov 3, 2013, 9:20 AM EDT
On Friday Mark was able to get the Nationals’ new manager, Matt Williams, for a one-on-one interview at Nats Park. The new skipper talked about the talent on the team and managing for the first time. He understands the expectations the team will have in 2014 and seems to be genuinely excited to get started.…
Nov 2, 2013, 4:01 PM EDT
Yesterday the Nationals introduced Matt Williams, the team’s new manager, at Nats Park by pulling out all the stops. They had the Lerner family and other members of the ownership group, dozens of team employees, and tons of media in attendance. Even Jayson Werth, Ian Desmond and Tanner Roark were there. It was a very…
Nov 2, 2013, 9:00 AM EDT
The Nationals will keep most of their coaching staff intact despite a change in managers, a decision both Mike Rizzo and Matt Williams agreed upon, but they will have two new coaches in uniform next season, including one who will hold a brand-new position. Matt LeCroy, who played for the Nationals in 2006 and has…
Nov 1, 2013, 6:34 PM EDT
Rarely does any manager — let alone a first-time manager with only four years of big-league coaching experience — take over a club with few obvious roster holes and the expectation of immediate success. So as Matt Williams, on his first official day as manager of the Nationals, contemplated what needs to be fixed on…
Nov 1, 2013, 5:19 PM EDT
The Nationals introduced their fifth manager in team history on Friday afternoon at Nats Park, hosting a question and answer session with general manager Mike Rizzo and the newest member of the organization, Matt Williams. Rizzo and Williams held court for over half an hour, taking questions from the media on why the latter was…
NL EAST STANDINGS
WED: Nats at Phillies, 7:35 p.m.
FRI: Nats at Mariners, 10:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Mariners, 9:10 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Mariners, 4:10 p.m.
MON: Nats at Dodgers, 8:10 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Dodgers, 10:10 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.
Follow us on Twitter
- Nationals lament close call in loss to Phillies
- Nats struggle early, lose in controversial fashion to Phillies
- LaRoche gets rare night off with tight back
- Gonzalez faces Hamels in showdown of southpaws
- Nats' Triple-A affiliate Syracuse raking in postseason awards
- A primer on postseason roster eligibility rules
- Around the NL East: Stanton making strong push for NL MVP
- Nationals can't pull off dramatic rally this time
- Nats' momentum stalls vs. Phillies in first game of long road trip
- Cabrera out of lineup, but not seriously injured