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  1. Segura on fan support; Roenicke on gloves

    Jul 18, 2014, 11:21 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    Milwaukee Brewers shortstop Jean Segura returned to the baseball field on Friday night for the first time since his 9-month-old son, Janniel, passed away a week ago. The former All-Star walked to the plate in the top of the second inning to an extended ovation from the 39,373 in attendance. Segura took a moment to take…

  2. 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…

  3. Nats sign Fedde, see two return to school

    Jul 18, 2014, 6:10 PM EDT

    AP

    Once again it went down to the wire on Friday, as the Nationals signed their 2014 first round pick Erick Fedde just moments before the 5 p.m. deadline. The 18th overall pick out of UNLV – a recent recipient of Tommy John surgery – inked a deal with the Nats worth approximately $2.51 million, according…

  4. Zimmermann on track to start Tuesday

    Jul 18, 2014, 5:04 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Jordan Zimmermann is on track to start Tuesday night for the Nationals in Colorado after playing catch Thursday and feeling no discomfort in his right arm. Zimmermann, who pulled himself out of his last start in Philadelphia with cramping in his biceps, took time off during the All-Star break to let the muscle rest and…

  5. Game 94: Brewers at Nats

    Jul 18, 2014, 3:30 PM EDT

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    After four long days off, the baseball season resumes tonight, with the Nationals opening a brief, 3-game homestand against the Brewers before heading out on the road. Given the opportunity to reset his rotation over the All-Star break, Matt Williams decided to give the ball to Stephen Strasburg for the second-half opener. Strasburg will be…

  6. The Baseball Show: Second half preview

    Jul 18, 2014, 12:25 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    With the second half of the 2014 MLB season set to kick off, much of this week’s episode of ‘The Baseball Show’ centered around what the Nationals need to do to secure the NL East and make the playoffs. In this first clip Mark gives his keys to the Nats’ second half, including which players need to…

  7. Second half storylines

    Jul 18, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    After four long days without baseball (at least, anything other than the exhibition variety) the Nationals are back on the field tonight, hosting the Brewers in a nice weekend showdown between first-place clubs. Thus begins the unofficial second half of the season, the final 70-game stretch that will determine whether this team returns to the…

  8. Nats minor league affiliates at the break

    Jul 17, 2014, 4:25 PM EDT

    AP

    With the MLB All-Star break occurring this week, it seems like a good time to take a look at the Nationals’ minor league affiliates. There have been some big surprises and disappointments in the Nats’ farm system in 2014, here is a breakdown of the standouts on each team: – TRIPLE-A SYRACUSE CHIEFS Best position player:…

  9. MLB Power Rankings: A’s the WS favorites

    Jul 17, 2014, 1:53 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    Here are this week’s MLB Power Rankings featuring thoughts on each team from Mark Zuckerman, Chase Hughes and myself, Steve Roney: LAUNCH PHOTO GALLERY 1. Oakland Athletics (LW: 1) – Roney: I still love the trade for the Shark and Hammel, but you have to wonder if Russell could have been better used to bring in, say,…

  10. First-half report card

    Jul 17, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Yes, I fully understand the first half of the 2014 baseball season ended more than two weeks ago and that at this point the Nationals have played 57 percent of their regular-season schedule. To which I say: So what? There weren’t a bunch of days off following Game 81 that required creative blog post ideas…

  11. ‘Baseball in the District’ – Nats top prospect Lucas Giolito

    Jul 16, 2014, 5:54 PM EDT

    Photo by The Associated Press

    On this week’s All-Star break edition of ‘Baseball in the District,’ Tim Murray of ESPN 980 and I welcomed in a very special guest. Nationals top prospect Lucas Giolito joined us to talk about his experience at the MLB Futures Game in Minnesota, as well as his 2014 season with the Hagerstown Suns. Giolito was great…

  12. A brief-but-eventful All-Star appearance for Clippard

    Jul 16, 2014, 1:32 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    MINNEAPOLIS — Tyler Clippard was minding his own business out in the visitors bullpen at Target Field, chatting with other pitchers on the NL All-Star squad, unsure if he would be appearing in this game at all. And then the call came, and the Nationals right-hander found himself warming up in a hurry, needed to…

  13. Instant analysis: AL 5, NL 3

    Jul 15, 2014, 11:32 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Everyone knew coming in what the 85th Midsummer Classic would be all about: Derek Jeter. And the Yankees shortstop didn’t disappoint in his 14th and final All-Star Game appearance. Afforded no fewer than three standing ovations, he rose to the occasion by going 2-for-2 with a double and a single, also…

  14. 2014 MLB All-Star Game

    Jul 15, 2014, 4:36 PM EDT

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    MINNEAPOLIS — It’s another cool, windy day in the Twin Cities, but thankfully there’s no rain in the forecast after last night’s already-tedious Home Run Derby was delayed. It should be a beautiful night as the baseball world converges on Target Field for the 85th All-Star Game. There are no shortage of big-name players to…

  15. In search of a Nationals All-Star

    Jul 15, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT

    AP

    MINNEAPOLIS — Maybe I’m just a softie, but the All-Star Game has always held a special place in my heart. Where else can you find this kind of assemblage of baseball talent, outside of perhaps Cooperstown for one summer weekend, the sport’s best and brightest stars all gathered together in one place for 48 hours?…

  16. Former Nats catchers blossom into All-Stars

    Jul 14, 2014, 10:04 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    MINNEAPOLIS — The Nationals always liked Kurt Suzuki and Derek Norris. They just liked Wilson Ramos better, which is why they were willing to trade away both catchers to the Athletics. Little could the Nationals — or anybody else, for that matter — have foreseen both guys blossoming into All-Stars this season. Yes, stroll through…

  17. 2014 Home Run Derby

    Jul 14, 2014, 7:59 PM EDT

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    MINNEAPOLIS — Hello from Target Field, where the Home Run Derby is about to begin. The weather conditions aren’t ideal; it has been raining on and all since mid-afternoon. But the skies are clear for the moment and they’re ready to get this annual event going. There are some changes from past years. For the…

  18. All-Star lineups announced

    Jul 14, 2014, 1:29 PM EDT

    AP

    MINNEAPOLIS — Mike Matheny, as Nationals fans surely know at this point, likes his guys. So it perhaps wasn’t surprising when the Cardinals manager chose one of his own to start Tuesday night’s All-Star Game. Matheny named Adam Wainwright as starting pitcher for the NL squad, selecting the veteran St. Louis ace over Dodgers ace…

  19. State of the Nats: All-Star break

    Jul 14, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    Top storylines: All-Star Game – This week is the 2014 All-Star break, giving the Nationals four days off before they begin the final 2 1/2 months of the season. Despite sitting tied for first place at the moment, the Nationals will not be well-represented in Minnesota. None of their players will be in the Home Run Derby on…

  20. Werth heating up at familiar time

    Jul 14, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    Jayson Werth capped off his 2014 first half with another solid game on Sunday, a four-RBI performance in the Nationals’ 10-3 win over the Phillies. Werth notched two hits and a walk, and blasted his 12th home run of the season. The veteran’s recent surge is coming at a great time for the Nats, as…

  21. Game 93: Nats at Phillies

    Jul 13, 2014, 12:01 PM EDT

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    Today the Nationals play their final game before the All-Star break with a chance to take two of three against the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Tanner Roark (7-6, 3.12) will take the mound after skipping his previous start due to last Tuesday’s postponement. Roark last pitched on July 4, a stretch of nine days. He’ll…

  22. Zimmerman delivers when Nats need it most

    Jul 13, 2014, 12:45 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    PHILADELPHIA — Ryan Zimmerman has often talked about his ability to stay relaxed in critical moments at the plate, understanding that the pressure in those situations is not on himself but on the opposing pitcher. He’s been able to thrive so many times with the game on the line, though, not only by taking pressure…

  23. Zimmermann likely will avoid DL with biceps strain

    Jul 13, 2014, 12:15 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Updated at 12:15 a.m. PHILADELPHIA —The Nationals don’t believe Jordan Zimmermann will need to spend any time on the disabled list after an MRI of his right arm taken Saturday revealed only a biceps strain, no structural damage. Manager Matt Williams dispersed results of the MRI following the Nationals’ 5-3, 10-inning win over the Phillies,…

  24. Instant analysis: Nats 5, Phillies 3 (10)

    Jul 12, 2014, 11:18 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: A high-profile pitching matchup produced a low-scoring game, though neither Stephen Strasburg nor Cole Hamels would likely have called this one of their best outings of the season. Strasburg carried a shutout into the sixth but couldn’t finish that inning after his pitch count skyrocketed to 117. Hamels, meanwhile, gave up…

  25. Game 92: Nats at Phillies

    Jul 12, 2014, 3:33 PM EDT

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    PHILADELPHIA — While we await the update on Jordan Zimmermann’s MRI, and debate his replacement on the All-Star roster, there is in fact another game taking place tonight at Citizens Bank Park. Featuring a star-studded pitching matchup: Stephen Strasburg vs. Cole Hamels. The Nationals will have Ian Desmond back in the lineup after he sat…

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
x-WASHINGTON 88 64 --
ATLANTA 76 76 12.0
MIAMI 74 78 14.0
NEW YORK 73 80 15.5
PHILADELPHIA 70 83 18.5
x-Clinched NL East title

NL PLAYOFFS STANDINGS

W L GB WCGB
x-WASHINGTON 88 64 --
LOS ANGELES 87 66 1.5
ST. LOUIS 85 68 3.5
-----------------------
SAN FRANCISCO 84 68 4.0 +2.0
PITTSBURGH 82 70 6.0 --
MILWAUKEE 79 74 9.5 3.5
x-Clinched division title

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
FRI: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Marlins, 1:10 p.m.
MON: OFF
TUE: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
THU: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
Full season schedule

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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