Aug 3, 2014, 10:17 AM EST
The Nationals enter Sunday looking to split their four-game series with Philadelphia, thanks to an 11-0 beatdown of the Phillies on Saturday night. Runs, however, could be a little harder to come by on this particular day. It’s a marquee pitching matchup at Nationals Park with Stephen Strasburg (7-9, 3.55) going up against Cole Hamels…
Jul 29, 2014, 11:55 PM EST
MIAMI — When healthy, the Nationals lineup is something to behold, an 8-deep consortium of power, patience and potency that proved to be as effective an offensive group as there is in baseball. But the moment one key guy goes down — or even worse, when two key guys go down as was the case…
Jul 29, 2014, 10:18 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On the heels of a gut-punch loss Monday night, the Nationals took the field tonight hoping a big-time performance from Stephen Strasburg would help them put the previous 24 hours well behind them. Strasburg did his part, tossing seven inning of 1-run ball, allowing only Giancarlo Stanton’s RBI double in the…
Jul 29, 2014, 3:42 PM EST
MIAMI — Was last night’s meltdown a blip on the radar or the beginning of a downward trend? The man who may have the most to say about that is Stephen Strasburg, who tonight gets the ball for the middle game of this series. Strasburg has his own Marlins Park demons to exorcise. In five…
Jul 24, 2014, 1:33 PM EST
We take a look at the Nationals’ past week, at a glance: Record: 4-2 Team slash: .318/.361/.444 Team ERA: 3.74 Runs per game: 5.5 STOCK UP Ian Desmond, SS: .440 AVG/ .462 OBP/ .640 SLG This past week was a pretty good reminder that when he’s right, Desmond is one of the best hitting shortstops in the…
Jul 24, 2014, 10:14 AM EST
On this week’s episode, Tim Murray of ESPN 980 and I brought in two excellent guests in USA Today national baseball writer Bob Nightengale and Harrisburg Senators infielder Matt Skole, one of the Nationals’ top prospects. Nightengale gave us a preview of the 2014 trade deadline and what he thinks both the Nationals and their rivals…
Jul 23, 2014, 6:30 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: With an opportunity to sweep the foundering Rockies and get their 9-game road off to a stellar start, the Nationals knew they’d need to compensate for the absences of Ryan Zimmerman (who was placed on the 15-day DL with a hamstring strain), Jayson Werth (given a day off to rest his…
Jul 23, 2014, 12:58 PM EST
First up, the news we all knew was coming: Ryan Zimmerman is headed to the disabled list with a strained right hamstring. The only question at this point is how long the Nationals’ third baseman will be out. It’ll be at least 15 days, obviously, and for now Zimmerman is being replaced on the active…
Jul 19, 2014, 12:20 AM EST
If you wanted to pick one start that seemed to epitomize Stephen Strasburg’s season, this might well have been it. Strasburg was dominant at times Friday night, striking out nine Brewers while walking only one. Yet he was done in by a couple of home runs and a key, 2-out, 2-run single that ultimately left…
Jul 18, 2014, 10:07 PM EST
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…
Jul 18, 2014, 3:30 PM EST
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…
Jul 14, 2014, 12:00 PM EST
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…
Jul 13, 2014, 12:45 AM EST
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…
Jul 12, 2014, 11:18 PM EST
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…
Jul 12, 2014, 3:33 PM EST
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…
Jul 7, 2014, 10:48 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: If the opener of this 4-game Battle of the Beltways is a sign of things to come, get ready for an entertaining, tense week of baseball between two very good teams in front of rabid fans supporting both clubs. A crowd of 35,126 decked out both in red and orange was…
Jul 7, 2014, 3:18 PM EST
Hello and welcome to the opener of the Battle of the Beltways, the annual showdown between Washington and Baltimore that means very much to the fan bases of both clubs and, quite honestly, means very little to players on both sides. Much as we’d like to believe this is a real rivalry, the players just…
Jul 2, 2014, 1:17 PM EST
We take a look at the Nationals’ past week, at a glance: Record: 4-2 Team slash: .229/.304/.358 Team ERA: 3.43 Runs per game: 4.83 STOCK UP Gio Gonzalez, SP: 1-0 / 7.0 IP/ 0.00 ERA It might be too early to make any grand proclamations, but perhaps we’re in the midst of witnessing a midseason rebound for Gonzalez. He…
Jul 2, 2014, 12:34 AM EST
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 EST
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, 3:24 PM EST
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…
Jun 30, 2014, 11:00 AM EST
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 26, 2014, 1:09 PM EST
We take a look at the Nationals’ past week, at a glance: Record: 4-3 Team slash: .211/.272/.219 Team ERA: 2.85 Runs per game: 2.85 STOCK UP Tanner Roark, SP: 1-0/5.1 IP/1.69 ERA Roark showed great moxie during his start in the weekend series against the Braves, limiting them to just one earned run in 5.1 innings and earned the…
Jun 25, 2014, 12:22 PM EST
Just over 12 hours after the longest game in Nationals history was completed, the Nats will pick right back up in Milwaukee for the final game of their series with the Brewers. Stephen Strasburg (6-5, 3.24) will take the mound in a 2:10 p.m. start, as the Nationals look for the three-game sweep. Strasburg will…
Jun 20, 2014, 11:40 PM EST
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…
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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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