Mar 31, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT
The day has arrived at last. In a mere seven hours, Denard Span will step to the plate to face Dillon Gee, and the 10th season in Nationals history will be underway. As was the case last year, the Nationals have lofty expectations. They can only hope to actually live up to those expectations this…
Mar 31, 2014, 1:26 AM EDT
The Nationals made Stephen Strasburg available to media on Saturday, despite the team’s exhibition game with the Detroit Tigers being canceled due to rain. Strasburg held court at the podium for about 10 minutes, looking both back and forward on his career. I went in-depth on his expectations for Monday in New York in this…
Mar 30, 2014, 5:30 PM EDT
After an eight-year effort led by Washington Nationals Dream Foundation chair Marla Lerner Tanenbaum, the Nationals Youth Baseball Academy officially opened on Saturday with a ribbon cutting ceremony that featured D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, and even Wolf Blitzer. On hand to introduce the new baseball and educational facilities were the entire…
Mar 30, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT
Entering his fifth season in Major League Baseball, Stephen Strasburg will take the mound on Monday afternoon in New York to start yet another Opening Day for the Nationals. This will be his third season opener, and having been through it before, he knows exactly what to expect. “You just have to treat it like…
Mar 29, 2014, 7:16 PM EDT
After Saturday’s exhibition game was canceled, the Washington Nationals officially announced their Opening Day roster. There were no surprises this time around, as after Doug Fister was looking primed for a DL stint on Thursday, it became clear the Nats were going to keep both Tanner Roark and Taylor Jordan. Aaron Barrett has made the…
Mar 29, 2014, 3:59 PM EDT
After competing with each other for six weeks for the Nationals’ fifth starter job, it turns out both Tanner Roark and Taylor Jordan have made the team’s Opening Day roster. It happened because of an injury to starter Doug Fister, but both Roark and Jordan are excited for the opportunity no matter the circumstances. “It…
Mar 29, 2014, 12:28 PM EDT
**Today’s game has been cancelled due to inclement weather at Nationals Park** Checking in here at Nationals Park where the tarp is down and the rain is falling. If you saw my post earlier on the forecast, it is not looking great for the afternoon. There is a lot of precipitation expected. The Nats have…
Mar 28, 2014, 4:55 PM EDT
In the latest episode of ‘Baseball in The District,’ Tim Murray of ESPN 980 and I welcomed Mets’ beat writer Adam Rubin of ESPN New York. Rubin gave us an update on Mets spring training and looked forward to Opening Day when the Nationals travel to New York to play at Citi Field. Off the…
Mar 25, 2014, 4:57 PM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — Stephen Strasburg took the mound today with two, somewhat dueling objectives. On one hand, the Nationals ace wanted to finish his spring on a high note and position himself as best he could for Opening Day. On the other hand, he didn’t want to tip his hand too much to the same…
Mar 25, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — We’ve reached the home stretch at last, and that means a couple of things: 1) Guys are absolutely itching to get out of here and get this thing started, and 2) Exhibition games start bearing more resemblance to regular-season games. That’s the case today, with Stephen Strasburg and nearly every member of…
Mar 20, 2014, 5:45 PM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — The Stephen Strasburg who took the mound Thursday afternoon and shut out the Tigers for five innings certainly looked a guy ready to take the mound on Opening Day for the Nationals. In scattering three hits and a walk, Strasburg cruised through his fourth start of the spring and lowered his Grapefruit…
Mar 20, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — As far as spring training matchups go, it doesn’t get a whole lot better than this: Stephen Strasburg vs. Max Scherzer, with a bunch of regulars in both the Nationals and Tigers lineups. Strasburg, who last night was officially named the Nats’ Opening Day starter, makes his fourth appearance of the spring…
Mar 19, 2014, 9:35 PM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — Matt Williams gave it consideration, waited as long as he could before making an announcement. In the end, though, the answer was obvious: Stephen Strasburg will start Opening Day for the Nationals again. Williams finally made that official Wednesday night, naming Strasburg his No. 1 starter for the Nationals’ season opener March…
Mar 18, 2014, 2:02 PM EDT
On Monday Nationals manager Matt Williams made the surprise announcement that Ross Detwiler will begin the season in the team’s bullpen. Though Detwiler was pitching poorly through three spring starts, he was the favorite heading into the fifth starter competition, and was only given three outings to prove his case. So, now that Detwiler is…
Mar 15, 2014, 3:23 PM EDT
Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright joined Brian Mitchell for a one-on-one interview on SportsTalk Live this week to talk about the new season and his partnership with Mizuno gloves. The first three minutes or so are about the Cardinals and his expectations for them this year, but he then gets into some Nationals subjects. On Stephen…
Mar 15, 2014, 10:50 AM EDT
Today the Nationals and Marlins will send their aces to the mound as both Stephen Strasburg and Jose Fernandez are nearing the home stretch towards Opening Day. The game is not on television unfortunately, but you will be able to listen to the Marlins’ broadcast through MLB.com. The Nats have sent a decent amount of…
Mar 14, 2014, 8:45 AM EDT
Last night was this year’s first episode of ‘The Baseball Show,’ a spring training special to get you ready for the new season. Mark joined Rob Carlin and Brent Harris in the Comcast SportsNet studio to discuss the biggest topics surrounding the Nats as Opening Day sits just two weeks away. In this first clip…
Mar 9, 2014, 12:30 PM EDT
Stephen Strasburg makes his second start of the spring this afternoon, looking to build up his arm a bit more, likely slated for three innings of work against the Cardinals. The right-hander, who tossed two scoreless frames against the Braves on Tuesday, will again look to use his newly developed slider on occasion. Several regulars…
Mar 5, 2014, 4:30 PM EDT
In the third installment of ‘Baseball in The District,’ Tim Murray and I are joined by Carroll Rogers of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution to get a peak behind enemy lines at Braves spring training. After entering last season a bit under the radar, the Braves now have a target on their backs as the reigning champions…
Mar 4, 2014, 7:16 PM EDT
In Mark’s latest feature from Nationals’ spring training he talks with the team’s rotation about the expectations they face heading into this year. Two seasons ago they were arguably the best group of starters in baseball, but took a step back in 2013. Now Doug Fister joins an already talented mix looking to take them…
Mar 4, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT
Yes, it’s the Grapefruit League, and it’s March 4, but today’s game in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., is about as good as exhibition baseball is going to get. The Nationals and Braves meet for the second time in four days, and each lineup is stocked with big names. Bryce Harper, Ryan Zimmerman, Ian Desmond, Adam…
Feb 26, 2014, 3:30 PM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — You always have to be careful not to read too much into what happens in spring training, especially when the calendar shows it’s still February, so read the following with a bushel full of grains of salt… Jordan Zimmermann is currently on a five-day schedule that would line him up to start…
Feb 23, 2014, 4:11 PM EDT
VIERA, Fla. — There’s no rhyme or reason why certain batters face certain pitchers during live BP at Nationals camp. Matt Williams and his staff don’t try to set up particular matchups; they simply instruct a group of three outfielders or infielders to head over to an adjacent field and take their hacks against whatever…
Feb 18, 2014, 11:25 AM EDT
Doug Fister sat down with Mark at Nationals spring training yesterday in Viera, Fla. to talk about his early impressions of the team. He’s been with the Nats just a few days, but is liking what he sees both from the players and manager Matt Williams. Fister has played on some great teams in the…
Feb 17, 2014, 12:51 PM EDT
Stephen Strasburg has learned a thing or two over the past several years when it comes to attention from media and fans. He entered the league with as much hype as any pitcher in recent memory, and he played on the Nationals last season who began the year as a World Series favorite. Strasburg is…
COUNTDOWN TO OPENING DAY
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2015 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: 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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