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  1. Fister throws off bullpen mound, reports no problems

    Apr 11, 2014, 6:35 PM EST

    AP

    ATLANTA — Doug Fister took another key step toward his eventual return from a strained lat muscle on Friday, throwing 35 pitches in a bullpen session at Turner Field and reporting no problems with either his side or his elbow. “Really impressive,” manager Matt Williams said. “Threw it where he wanted to, had good life,…

  2. Game 10: Nats at Braves

    Apr 11, 2014, 3:56 PM EST

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    ATLANTA — Hello from Turner Field, where tonight the Nationals (owners of a best-in-baseball 7-2 record) open a big, three-game series with the Braves (who after losing two of three to the Mets sit at 5-4 overall). As has been noted, the Nats found themselves with the exact same record one year ago, facing the…

  3. Nationals hope Games 10-12 vs. Braves go better this time around

    Apr 11, 2014, 12:01 PM EST

    Photo by USA Today

    After beating the Miami Marlins on Thursday to secure their second series sweep of this young season, the Nationals moved to 7-2 through nine games on the year. That’s a .778 winning percentage, and a pretty good start, right? Well, what if you were told the Nationals started each of the last two seasons with…

  4. Barrett passes yet another test with Stanton strikeout in Nats’ win

    Apr 11, 2014, 9:58 AM EST

    USA Today Sports Images

    This time last year, Aaron Barrett was one week into the job as closer of the Harrisburg Senators. He was still searching for his first career save at the Double-A level. Fast forward 12 months and Barrett is a budding star in the Washington Nationals’ bullpen. He’s yet to allow a run through five career…

  5. Werth, Desmond homer as Nats continue offensive surge

    Apr 10, 2014, 10:27 PM EST

    Photo by USA Today

    The Nationals completed their sweep of the Miami Marlins on Thursday in what ended up a 7-1 blowout in the box score. But for much of the game the Nationals were hanging on to a one-run lead thanks to an efficient start by Stephen Strasburg, and another big hit by Jayson Werth. Werth gave the…

  6. Strasburg brilliant in Nats’ 7-1 win over Marlins

    Apr 10, 2014, 9:16 PM EST

    Photo by USA Today

    Stephen Strasburg entered Thursday’s matinee against the Marlins with a 6.10 ERA after two starts, and just a day after the Nationals’ bullpen was needed for over seven innings. He was also facing a Marlins team who, even in their lowest moments, seem to give him trouble. Fortunately for the Nationals – as they head into a…

  7. Instant Analysis: Nats 7, Marlins 1

    Apr 10, 2014, 7:00 PM EST

    Photo by USA Today

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Stephen Strasburg overcame his two poor starts to begin the season with a dominant performance against the upstart Miami Marlins on Thursday afternoon. The right-hander dazzled through 6 2/3 innings of one-run ball, putting on an efficient display through 98 pitches. Strasburg allowed only three hits to the Marlins and struck out 12. He…

  8. Williams shares good news on Fister; talks arguing with umpires

    Apr 10, 2014, 3:04 PM EST

    Photo by USA Today

    Matt Williams’ pregame session on Thursday covered a wide array of subjects involving the Nationals including some good news on Doug Fister and the skipper’s early impressions of MLB’s system of manager’s challenges. First, the Fister part. The right-hander played catch before Thursday’s game and is now slated to throw a bullpen within the next two…

  9. Game 9: Marlins at Nats

    Apr 10, 2014, 12:30 PM EST

    def9f-nationalspark806mz

    Checking in here at Nationals Park where it is absolutely perfect in terms of weather. The temperature is at about 65 degrees and it should warm up to about 70 before game time. Today Stephen Strasburg (0-1, 6.10) will make his third start of the 2014 season. It’s been a mixed bag for the right-hander…

  10. Podcast: Baseball in the District – MLB.com’s Richard Justice

    Apr 10, 2014, 10:49 AM EST

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    The first week of the 2014 season gave us plenty to talk about on this edition of ‘Baseball in the District.’ Tim Murray of ESPN 980 and I first talked about Ryan Zimmerman’s shoulder troubles, and the effect they could have on the future of the Nationals’ infield. We then went into Anthony Rendon’s hot…

  11. Kings of the comeback

    Apr 10, 2014, 1:02 AM EST

    AP

    It took 62 tries, not until a June 9 doubleheader against the Twins, before the 2013 Nationals came from three runs down to win a ballgame. Only eight games into the 2014 season, the Nationals have already done it twice. And after Wednesday’s dramatic, back-and-forth, plucked-out-of-thin-air, 10-7 victory over the Marlins, it was perhaps fair…

  12. Instant analysis: Nats 10, Marlins 7

    Apr 9, 2014, 11:03 PM EST

    AP

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Where to begin? We’ll start with Jordan Zimmermann, who was downright awful in getting roughed up for five runs in only 1 2/3 innings, putting his teammates in a quick 5-0 hole. Slowly but surely, though, the Nationals got themselves back into it. Craig Stammen was brilliant out of the bullpen,…

  13. Zim back in lineup, hoping new throwing motion works

    Apr 9, 2014, 6:32 PM EST

    AP

    Having successfully made it through two days of rest and then two days of limited throwing with a new sidearm motion, Ryan Zimmerman returned to the Nationals lineup Wednesday night, plugged back into his usual spot at third base and hoping he can make it through the season with no more disruptions. “It’s a constant…

  14. Game 8: Marlins at Nats

    Apr 9, 2014, 3:27 PM EST

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    Ryan Zimmerman, as promised, is back in the Nationals’ lineup. And he’s back at third base, hoping to battle his way through a bad shoulder by altering his throwing motion, dipping down to go sidearm all the time after committing two painful errors throwing overhand last week. Whether this experiment works remains to be seen.…

  15. Nationals Stock Watch: Rendon on the rise

    Apr 9, 2014, 12:49 PM EST

    Photo by USA Today

    Record: 5-2 Team slash: .253/.319/.409 Team ERA: 2.25 Runs per game: 4.57 STOCK UP Anthony Rendon, 2B/3B – 7 G, .407 BA, 11 H, 4 R, 3 2B, HR, 8 RBI, 1.037 OPS If the season’s first week is any indication, the Nationals’ 23-year-old infielder might be starting to show why the team drafted him sixth overall in 2011…

  16. Rendon impresses at plate, in field

    Apr 9, 2014, 10:42 AM EST

    AP

    Though he had seen occasional action at third base from time to time, Anthony Rendon had made the mental switch to second base last summer, once he arrived in Washington and found himself with an opportunity to play every day at an unfamiliar position. His defensive work has paid dividends; he has become a quality…

  17. This time, aggressive baserunning pays off

    Apr 8, 2014, 11:57 PM EST

    AP

    We’ve already seen in this young season the Nationals run themselves out of a potential victory with some over-aggressiveness on the bases. Painful as their 2-1 loss to the Braves in Friday’s home opener was, players insisted they’ll benefit in the long run if they keep applying pressure the way new manager Matt Williams has…

  18. Instant analysis: Nats 5, Marlins 0

    Apr 8, 2014, 10:06 PM EST

    AP

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On a chilly April evening, the pitchers figured to be ahead of the hitters. And sure enough, that was true for Gio Gonzalez and Henderson Alvarez. The two young starters combined to allow only one run through 5 1/2 innings. That’s not to say Gonzalez was in top form; he racked…

  19. Zimmermann to start Wednesday, Strasburg on Thursday

    Apr 8, 2014, 6:20 PM EST

    USA Today Sports Images

    The Nationals are tweaking the order of their rotation, bumping Jordan Zimmermann and Stephen Strasburg up to face the Marlins the next two days while pushing Tanner Roark back to face the Braves on Friday night. Using Monday’s day off as an opportunity to reconfigure things, manager Matt Williams decided to push his top two…

  20. Zimmerman altering motion, hopes to play Wednesday

    Apr 8, 2014, 6:03 PM EST

    USA Today Sports Images

    Ryan Zimmerman wants to play and help the Nationals as best he can. The Nationals want Zimmerman to play and help them as best he can. At the moment, the best place for him to do that is at third base. So Zimmerman, dealing with significant pain in his right shoulder that is unlikely to…

  21. Game 7: Marlins at Nats

    Apr 8, 2014, 3:23 PM EST

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    Some four hours before tonight’s scheduled first pitch, Ryan Zimmerman was out on the field, making sidearm throws across the diamond from third base to first base. He then huddled up with Matt Williams, Nationals coaches and head athletic trainer Lee Kuntz for several minutes before heading back down the dugout tunnel. The verdict: Zimmerman,…

  22. Around the NL East: Marlins see Nats as early season test

    Apr 8, 2014, 12:11 PM EST

    MLB: Washington Nationals at Miami Marlins

    ATLANTA BRAVES Despite a rash of pitching injuries during spring training, the Braves have opened the 2014 season looking like they haven’t skipped a beat. They took two of three against both the Brewers and Nationals this past week, and now head back home to face the Mets with free agent signing Ervin Santana set…

  23. Now what?

    Apr 8, 2014, 6:00 AM EST

    AP

    It’s been three days since Ryan Zimmerman last took his position in the field for the Nationals, departing abruptly after his latest attempt to throw the ball across the diamond sailed over Adam LaRoche’s head with minimal velocity and maximum awkwardness. Since then, Zimmerman has had a chance to rest. He has had his right…

  24. Soriano earns first save of 2014 season, though it wasn’t easy

    Apr 7, 2014, 5:01 PM EST

    Photo by USA Today

    Nationals closer Rafael Soriano earned his first save of the 2014 season on Sunday after closing out the team’s 2-1 win over the Atlanta Braves. Though he sealed the win, however, it took him 22 pitches to record three outs and featured two basehits by the Braves. Soriano even capped it off with a dramatic…

  25. State of the Nats: Impressions from the first week

    Apr 7, 2014, 11:59 AM EST

    Photo by USA Today

    Top storylines: Injuries mounting - The Nationals avoided the sweep on Sunday, but moving forward there are plenty of injury situations to watch. For one, Ryan Zimmerman is expected to be reevaluated on Tuesday as the team looks for a solution to his shoulder soreness. An MRI showed no structural damage, only inflammation, which is good. Matt Williams said…

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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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