Jul 2, 2014, 12:34 AM EDT
In the wake of one of the worst performances of his career, Stephen Strasburg mentioned a mechanical glitch he needed to fix, a small tweak he felt would lead to fewer pitches left over the heart of the plate. Just as important, though, may have been the mental adjustment Strasburg was able to make and…
Jul 1, 2014, 10:27 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: With the hubbub (and a dash of controversy) of Monday night behind them, the Nationals got down to business tonight and resumed the grind of the season with their healthy lineup still intact. On a sweltering night at the ballpark, they picked up right where they left off Monday, pounding the…
Jul 1, 2014, 6:07 PM EDT
Matt Williams met with Bryce Harper today and then made a concerted effort to diffuse any notion of perceived animosity between the Nationals manager and his 21-year-old star. “I’ve got to let you guys know something: I’ve got Bryce’s back, in every way,” Williams said prior to the Nationals’ game against the Rockies. “And that…
Jul 1, 2014, 3:24 PM EDT
Matt Williams could have made changes to his starting lineup tonight, choosing to move guys around the diamond as the Nationals manager has suggested he’ll do now that he has a fully healthy roster again. Or Williams could look at last night’s 7-3 thumping of the Rockies and conclude: Hey, if it ain’t broke, don’t…
Jul 1, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT
This week’s episode of ‘Baseball in the District’ happened to fall right at the halfway point of the 2014 season. With that in mind, Tim Murray of ESPN 980 and I evaluated where they are right now and made predictions for the second half. We also welcomed in two guests. The first was radio voice of the…
Jul 1, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT
Ryan Zimmerman had taken his position at third base 1,119 previous times in the big leagues, so his trot from the Nationals dugout across the infield Monday evening should have been the epitome of routine. This, however, wasn’t like any of the previous occasions. This was the first time Zimmerman played third base since leaving…
Jul 1, 2014, 12:24 AM EDT
It had been 80 games since the Nationals last had their full lineup together and healthy, the group Mike Rizzo assembled for this season before injuries struck almost immediately on Opening Day. Half a season where the Nats patched together lineup cards just hoping to stay afloat in the NL East. On Monday, Bryce Harper…
Jun 30, 2014, 10:04 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: For the first time in three months, the Nationals took the field tonight feeling like a complete ballclub again. With Bryce Harper off the disabled list, the entire lineup was together again. And boy did it have to feel good for this team and an energetic crowd of 33,660 that made…
Jun 30, 2014, 5:48 PM EDT
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…
Jun 30, 2014, 3:17 PM EDT
Well, here it is. The moment you’ve all been waiting for. Has there ever been a more-anticipated starting lineup reveal in Nationals history? And the answer is … Ryan Zimmerman is back at third base for the first time since he fractured his thumb way back on April 11. Bryce Harper is back in left…
Jun 30, 2014, 2:49 PM EDT
The Nationals made official on Monday the activation of Bryce Harper from the disabled list, setting up his expected return to the lineup after missing more than two months with a torn ligament in his left thumb. Reliever Xavier Cedeno was sent down to Triple-A Syracuse as the corresponding move. Harper has been out since April…
Jun 30, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT
Top storylines: Harper’s return – It’s been over two months since Bryce Harper last took the field with the Nationals, but his long recovery from a torn ligament in his left thumb is just about over. Barring something unforeseen, Harper is expected to be in the Nats’ lineup to face the Colorado Rockies on Monday night. Harper…
Jun 30, 2014, 12:00 AM EDT
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…
Jun 29, 2014, 10:50 AM EDT
CHICAGO — The optimist will look at the fact the Nationals are tied for first place, with the best pitching staff in baseball, sporting a +39 run differential despite the fact they had their full, Opening Day lineup together for all of seven innings … on Opening Day. The pessimist will look at the fact…
Jun 29, 2014, 12:33 AM EDT
CHICAGO — Forget who you’re playing or what the circumstances suggest, a doubleheader sweep is no sure thing. Now play that doubleheader at the end of a 7-game road trip, in sweltering humidity interrupted only by a 55-minute downpour, needing to win both ends of the twinbill to salvage a series split and maintain your…
Jun 28, 2014, 10:55 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: If you’re going to spend the entire day and night at the ballpark, might as well win two ballgames. The Nationals will leave Chicago exhausted but happy to have taken both ends of their doubleheader with the Cubs, salvaging a 4-game series split at Wrigley Field. And few will be happier…
Jun 28, 2014, 5:48 PM EDT
CHICAGO — And we’re back for our second game of the day here at Wrigley, the final game of this series. The Nationals need another win to salvage a 4-game split, and to do that they’ll need to beat Jeff Samardzija and finally provide some run support for Blake Treinen. Treinen returns from Syracuse as…
Jun 28, 2014, 3:46 PM EDT
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…
Jun 28, 2014, 12:44 PM EDT
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…
Jun 28, 2014, 11:12 AM EDT
CHICAGO — Ernie Banks, as far as I know, isn’t here today. So I’ll just go ahead and say it: Let’s play two! Yes, the Nationals and Cubs have a day-night doubleheader on the docket, beginning with a 1:05 p.m. EDT opener and concluding with a 7:15 p.m. EDT nightcap (on Fox, FYI). If you…
Jun 27, 2014, 8:35 PM EDT
CHICAGO — It was still very early in a long ballgame, and there was plenty of time left for plenty more to develop at Wrigley Field. But when Ryan Zimmerman was thrown out at the plate in the top of the second inning Friday afternoon, and certainly when Danny Espinosa struck out with two men…
Jun 27, 2014, 6:57 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On the heels of a frustrating loss in the fog, the Nationals returned to Wrigley Field today hoping that blue skies would produce a happier result. Instead, they dropped another game to the last-place Cubs, this time in unsightly fashion. The Nats were held to two runs by Jason Hammel, who…
Jun 27, 2014, 4:50 PM EDT
Nationals pitching prospect A.J. Cole was promoted from Harrisburg to Triple-A Syracuse on Friday, as he continues his development as one of the Nats’ most promising minor leaguers. Cole, 22, is considered the team’s second best prospect after fellow right-hander Lucas Giolito and was ranked 69th among all MLB prospects by Baseball America prior to…
Jun 27, 2014, 3:28 PM EDT
CHICAGO — Way back on Sunday, as the Nationals wrapped up their homestand, Matt Williams mentioned that Ian Desmond and Jayson Werth were very much in need of a day off. Well, five days later, Werth has taken his break, sitting out the Nats’ series finale in Milwaukee on Wednesday afternoon. Desmond, though, has remained…
Jun 27, 2014, 12:45 PM EDT
CHICAGO — Hey, we can actually see the rooftops here today! There’s still some fog lingering way off in the distance, closer to Lake Michigan, but the skies are mostly clear directly over Wrigley Field, a pleasant change from last night’s surreal scene. It’s Tanner Roark on the mound today for the Nationals, and just…
NL EAST STANDINGS
THU: Diamondbacks at Nats, 4:05 p.m.
FRI: Giants at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
SAT: Giants at Nats, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Giants at Nats, 1:35 p.m.
MON: Nats at Phillies, 7:05 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Phillies, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Nats at Phillies, 7:05 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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