May 6, 2014, 6:52 PM EDT
Wilson Ramos was back at Nationals Park on Tuesday, his injured left hand feeling so strong, he expects to come off the disabled list and start behind the plate Wednesday afternoon against the Dodgers. “I think so,” he said. “I think that’s the plan for now.” So, no more rehab for Ramos, who has been…
May 6, 2014, 3:26 PM EDT
And we’re all back at Nationals Park, a mere 14 hours after the conclusion of last night’s rain-delay-o-rama, which saw the Nats pull off a 4-0 victory over Zack Greinke and the Dodgers and move into first place in the NL East. So, forgive everybody here for being a bit tired and cranky right now.…
May 6, 2014, 12:21 PM EDT
ATLANTA BRAVES It was just a week ago the Braves were riding high with the second-best record in baseball at 17-7 and the best starting rotation in the majors. Since Atlanta has dropped seven consecutive games, including sweeps at Miami and against San Francisco. Last year, when they won the NL East, they’re longest losing streak…
May 6, 2014, 3:21 AM EDT
With a 3-hour, 17-minute rain delay taking starter Jordan Zimmermann out of the game, the Nationals laid out a plan for their bullpen on Monday that could have very easily come back to bite them. Instead of going with one of his long relievers, Matt Williams opted to instead patch together the final five innings of…
May 6, 2014, 1:21 AM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: This was supposed to be a big-time pitchers’ duel between two of the NL’s best right-handers: Zack Greinke and Jordan Zimmermann. Mother Nature, though, had something very different in mind. A 3-hour, 17-minute rain delay in the middle of the fourth inning prevented two starting pitchers from going deep into the…
May 5, 2014, 5:48 PM EDT
The Nationals activated outfielder Scott Hairston off the 15-day disabled list on Monday in the first move of what should be a week full of getting players back from injury. Hairston was sidelined by a left oblique strain and is now ready to step in, while in the coming days both catcher Wilson Ramos (broken…
May 5, 2014, 3:26 PM EDT
After a bit of a frustrating weekend in Philadelphia, the Nationals are back home ever so briefly this week for a three-game series with the Dodgers, who are sending their best to the mound each day. It begins tonight with Zack Greinke, who has opened the season 5-0 with a 2.04 ERA. The right-hander has…
May 5, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT
Despite injuries to three key members of their lineup, their biggest offseason acquisition and a trusted veteran off the bench, the Nationals have managed to keep their heads above water through the season’s first five weeks. So even though the mood inside the visitors’ clubhouse at Citizens Bank Park yesterday was down following a frustrating,…
May 4, 2014, 7:51 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Though they’ve managed to be more productive at the plate than most would have thought given the prolonged absence of three key lineup regulars, the Nationals still aren’t taking full advantage of the mountains of opportunities they keep giving themselves. Take Sunday’s 1-0 loss at Citizens Bank Park, a game in which Gio…
May 4, 2014, 5:53 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: When the Phillies had to scratch Cole Hamels from today’s start due to flu-like symptoms, the Nationals figured they were catching a break. Not exactly. Replacement starter Roberto Hernandez was downright dominant, carrying a shutout into the eighth inning. Gio Gonzalez was equally dominant, but the Nationals left-hander gave up one…
May 4, 2014, 2:22 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Craig Stammen joined one of the rarest of fraternities on Sunday: Major-league ballplayers with college degrees. After passing his final exams from the University of Dayton, where he first enrolled in 2002, Stammen officially was among the Class of 2014 honored at Sunday’s graduation ceremony. The right-hander wasn’t there to receive his diploma…
May 4, 2014, 1:24 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — It’s a cool, windy, cloudy Sunday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park, which hosts a rare, 3:05 p.m. Sunday game today. The reason: There was a massive 10-mile race in the area this morning, the traffic from which is only just now starting to dissipate. Once they get going today, it’ll be Gio Gonzalez…
May 3, 2014, 11:40 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — The Nationals’ coaching staff has analyzed the club’s first-inning woes, a recurring problem for this team through the season’s month-plus, trying to find a common theme or solution to the issue. And in the end, they can’t find anything to explain why they keep digging themselves into these kind of early holes. “No.…
May 3, 2014, 10:28 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: The Nationals have shown an ability to come from behind this season, but they can’t count on doing it every single night. They definitely weren’t up to the task tonight, falling into an early hole and never digging their way out of it. Tanner Roark took the brunt of the punishment,…
May 3, 2014, 6:19 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Doug Fister is healthy and ready to make his Nationals debut Wednesday against the Dodgers, but the club may push the right-hander back to Friday night’s game in Oakland in order to keep Stephen Strasburg on normal rest. “He’s good to go,” manager Matt Williams said. “There’s no issues. He got through his…
May 3, 2014, 3:31 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Though there weren’t any actual fireworks here last night, there were two incidents that clearly didn’t sit well with the Nationals: Cliff Lee’s quick-pitch up-and-in to Denard Span in the fifth, and Carlos Ruiz’s high-and-hard non-slide into Ian Desmond in the ninth. How upset were the Nats with those two events? I guess…
May 3, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — It has happened nine times now, nine times in 29 games. And every time it happens, the Nationals give themselves even more reason to believe they can do it again. Trailing a ballgame late, they rallied to win in dramatic fashion. Friday night’s 5-3 victory over the Phillies was merely the latest example…
May 3, 2014, 12:07 AM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Benches and bullpens emptied in the fifth inning at Citizens Bank Park on Friday night, and though no punches were thrown between the Nationals and Phillies, Denard Span and Cliff Lee did exchange some verbal barbs about an incident sparked by Lee’s up-and-in quick-pitch to an unsuspecting Span. “I don’t think he was…
May 2, 2014, 10:18 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: It was billed as a stellar pitching matchup between Stephen Strasburg and Cliff Lee, but this game was decided well after both starting hurlers were out of the game. The Phillies jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first after Jayson Werth dropped a foul ball that…
May 2, 2014, 8:49 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Doug Fister threw 76 pitches over 3 2/3 innings Friday night in what is expected to be the right-hander’s final rehab start before joining the Nationals’ rotation next week. Pitching for Class AA Harrisburg at Reading, Fister allowed two runs and two hits, walking three while striking out five. He cruised through three…
May 2, 2014, 6:22 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Wilson Ramos made his return to the field earlier Friday at extended spring training and immediately gave the Nationals reason to believe it won’t be much longer before their starting catcher returns from a broken bone in his left hand. Ramos caught three innings in Viera, getting three at-bats in which he homered…
May 2, 2014, 3:41 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Hello from Citizens Bank Park, where tonight the Nationals open a three-game weekend series against the Phillies, with a star-studded pitching matchup on tap: Stephen Strasburg vs. Cliff Lee. Strasburg returns to the scene of his worst moment in baseball: The mound where his elbow blew out in 2010, requiring Tommy John surgery.…
May 2, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT
We touched on a bunch of Nats-related subjects on this week’s episode of The Baseball Show. Rob Carlin, Joe Orsulak and I looked at just how good Tanner Roark has been since debuting late last summer, comparing his stats to a fellow rotation mate who arrived with just a bit more hype than he did.…
May 2, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT
A hodgepodge of Friday morning thoughts before I hop on I-95 and head up to Philadelphia for the weekend… — The Nationals about to face a major, week-long test going up against six quality, veteran pitchers against the Phillies and Dodgers. It begins tonight with Cliff Lee, whose 40-to-4 strikeout-to-walk ratio so far this season…
May 1, 2014, 11:38 AM EDT
This week Tim Murray of ESPN 980 and I welcomed a very special guest to ‘Baseball in the District.’ ESPN national baseball writer and Bethesda, Md.-native Tim Kurkjian called in to discuss a variety of topics regarding the Nationals. We asked Kurkjian about his thoughts on Bryce Harper’s durability, Matt Williams’ first month as manager,…
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