Jun 21, 2014, 10:00 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: After heartache last night, would this finally be the night the Nationals would get past that oh-so-pesky roadblock known better as the Atlanta Braves? In a word, yes. Doug Fister was brilliant, tossing eight scoreless innings in a big-time start by the big right-hander. And the Nationals lineup delivered three clutch…
Jun 21, 2014, 6:36 PM EDT
Updated at 8:21 p.m. Bryce Harper will begin a rehab assignment with Class A Potomac on Monday, according to a source familiar with the Nationals’ plan for their injured outfielder, and begin the final stage of recovery process that should have him back in the big leagues on or around July 2. Harper, out since…
Jun 21, 2014, 3:39 PM EDT
There are perhaps two ways to look at last night’s game from the Nationals’ perspective. On one hand, they lost to the Braves, yet again, perhaps in a fashion more excruciating than any previous loss to Atlanta this year. On the other hand, they staged a fairly epic rally in the bottom of the ninth…
Jun 21, 2014, 1:07 PM EDT
The Nationals are currently lagging in All-Star voting with just over two weeks to go until the rosters are announced on July 6. Of course they will get at least one guy on the NL team, but who will it be? In this week’s episode of The Baseball Show, Mark discussed that very topic with…
Jun 21, 2014, 1:20 AM EDT
As the ball went screaming off Anthony Rendon’s bat and soared toward the bullpen in deep left-center field, anything seemed possible, from the Nationals’ standpoint, for the first time in a long time. What’s that about this team’s mental hurdle trying to beat the Braves? How about a game-tying, 2-out, bottom-of-the-ninth homer off Craig Kimbrel…
Jun 20, 2014, 11:40 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: How do you put an end to a dominant streak by one club over yours, one that may have gotten into to your heads? How about a stunning, bottom-of-the-ninth rally against the best closer in the game? Unfortunately, that only works if you then finish things off with the winning run in…
Jun 20, 2014, 6:49 PM EDT
The Nationals announced on Friday that 24 of their 40 draft picks from the 2014 class have agreed to terms. Among the players include third round catcher Jakson Reetz, fourth round pitcher Robbie Dickey, and 15th round first baseman Ryan Ripken, son of Hall of Famer Cal Ripken, Jr. First round pick Erick Fedde, a…
Jun 20, 2014, 6:02 PM EDT
By all accounts, the experiment of putting Ryan Zimmerman in left field has been a relative success for the Nationals. Though his natural position is third base, he has shown the athletic ability to more than hold his own while working in a larger space. One thing that had eluded Zimmerman for several weeks, however,…
Jun 20, 2014, 3:32 PM EDT
There’s really not much else to say about the Nationals and the Braves. You know the drill by now. All we can do at this point is wait and see what tonight’s game brings in this lopsided rivalry. Stephen Strasburg has the ball, and he’s been very good lately (2.15 ERA over his last 10…
Jun 20, 2014, 10:02 AM EDT
Braves pitcher Gavin Floyd – an Annapolis, Md. native – was cruising through his start against the Nationals on Thursday night, enjoying his best outing of the season. The 31-year-old was facing Jayson Werth in the first at-bat of the bottom of the seventh inning, having already thrown six scoreless frames with two hits allowed…
Jun 19, 2014, 11:52 PM EDT
It’s one thing to consistently lose to a good team. It’s quite another to consistently get beaten up at a rate that suggests there is a vast talent difference between the two clubs, which nobody believes is the case when the Nationals play the Braves. But the numbers don’t lie, and the numbers at this…
Jun 19, 2014, 10:03 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: If the Nationals hoped to open a big, 4-game series against the Braves on the right foot and begin to put to rest any questions about their ability to beat their NL East rivals, this wasn’t particularly the way to do it. The Nats were shut out by Gavin Floyd, until…
Jun 19, 2014, 5:37 PM EDT
Bryce Harper took the field to take batting practice and catch outfield flyballs before the Nationals game against the Braves on Thursday. Both were firsts in his recovery from a torn ligament in his left thumb, and how he feels in the coming days could determine when he begins a minor league rehab assignment. Harper…
Jun 19, 2014, 3:29 PM EDT
It’s been two long months since the Nationals and Braves squared off, as they each played six of their first 12 games of the season against each other. Now they go at it in a midseason, four-game series that could vault either team into a commanding lead in the National League East. Jordan Zimmermann (5-3, 2.98) will…
Jun 19, 2014, 10:46 AM EDT
They weathered an up-and-down first two months to the season, treading water while a host of key players overcame injuries, and have since gone on their first sustained run of the year, winning 12 of 18 and taking over first place in the NL East. And now, the Nationals really find out where they stand…
Jun 19, 2014, 12:57 AM EDT
From the day he took over as Nationals manager, Matt Williams preached aggression on the bases. But rarely has this team put that philosophy into practice over the season’s first 2 1/2 months. Then came Wednesday night’s series finale against the Astros, a 6-5, come-from-behind victory keyed by an Anthony Rendon homer, a Nate McLouth…
Jun 18, 2014, 10:49 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On a sweltering night on South Capitol Street, the Nationals made everyone sweat a little more with their play on the field. Gio Gonzalez labored through five innings in his return from a month-long stint on the DL. The lineup failed to capitalize on several early opportunities to knock out Scott…
Jun 18, 2014, 6:49 PM EDT
Matt Williams shed some more light on his plan once Bryce Harper returns from the disabled list in a few weeks, a plan that could see several regular members of the lineup bounce around from position to position on a daily basis to maximize everyone’s playing time. Harper’s return from surgery to repair a torn…
Jun 18, 2014, 3:13 PM EDT
Gio Gonzalez last started a game for the Nationals on May 17, and the results weren’t pretty. On the heels of an even uglier start in Oakland, the left-hander allowed five runs and seven hits in only three innings against the Mets, saw his ERA spike to 4.62 and then admitted afterward he had shoulder…
Jun 18, 2014, 1:01 PM EDT
In the outpour of Tony Gwynn remembrances since his untimely death at the age of 54 on Monday, you may have noticed a lot of people mentioning the 5.5 hole, also known as the space between the third baseman and the shortstop on a baseball diamond. As a left-handed hitter who could spray baseballs all over a…
Jun 18, 2014, 11:02 AM EDT
This week on ‘Baseball in the District,’ Tim Murray of ESPN 980 and I brought in two excellent guests, one of the Nationals’ top prospects and CSN’s very own Mark Zuckerman. Harrisburg Senators outfielder Michael Taylor joined us first to talk about his breakout year in the minor leagues. The former sixth round pick is…
Jun 18, 2014, 12:50 AM EDT
Any fears that the weekend slump that befuddled the Nationals would carry over into arguably their most-important homestand of the season to date were erased five batters into the bottom of the first inning Tuesday night. Three hits off talented Astros lefty Dallas Keuchel, two of them RBI doubles, gave the Nats an early 2-0…
Jun 17, 2014, 11:55 PM EDT
Needing a roster spot for the return of Gio Gonzalez on Wednesday, the Nationals optioned lefty reliever Xavier Cedeno to Triple-A Syracuse late Tuesday night. Cedeno, 27, made just one appearance in his recent stint with the big league club, a scoreless inning against the St. Louis Cardinals on June 14. He was called up…
Jun 17, 2014, 10:47 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On the heels of a long — and quite eventful — road trip, the Nationals came home an enigma of sorts. Was this a team starting to put everything together for the long haul, or was a weekend sweep in St. Louis a harbinger of more struggles to come? We don’t…
Jun 17, 2014, 5:21 PM EDT
Stephen Strasburg addressed the media in front of his locker at Nationals Park on Tuesday, holding back tears as he spoke fondly of his college coach, Tony Gwynn, a man he grew up admiring as a child in San Diego before later working with him on a daily basis for three years of his life. Gwynn passed…
NL EAST STANDINGS
x-Clinched division title
THU: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
FRI: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Marlins, 1:10 p.m.
TUE: Mets at Nats, 7:05 p.m.
WED: Mets at Nats, 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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