Jun 30, 2014, 10:04 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: For the first time in three months, the Nationals took the field tonight feeling like a complete ballclub again. With Bryce Harper off the disabled list, the entire lineup was together again. And boy did it have to feel good for this team and an energetic crowd of 33,660 that made…
Jun 30, 2014, 3:17 PM EDT
Well, here it is. The moment you’ve all been waiting for. Has there ever been a more-anticipated starting lineup reveal in Nationals history? And the answer is … Ryan Zimmerman is back at third base for the first time since he fractured his thumb way back on April 11. Bryce Harper is back in left…
Jun 30, 2014, 12:00 AM EDT
For more than two months, Matt Williams has been waiting to fill out a lineup card that includes Bryce Harper in it. And for several weeks, the Nationals’ first-time manager has been contemplating just how much he wants to shake up the rest of his lineup as a result of Harper’s return. The time has…
Jun 29, 2014, 2:02 PM EDT
Here are this week’s MLB Power Rankings featuring thoughts on each team from Mark Zuckerman, Chase Hughes and myself, Steve Roney: 1. Athletics (LW: 1) — Roney: Sean Doolittle is the latest Baseball’s Unhittable Closer. Still wondering why Beane went out and got Jim Johnson. 2. Brewers (LW: 3) — Hughes: They can certainly hit, but it might be…
Jun 29, 2014, 10:50 AM EDT
CHICAGO — The optimist will look at the fact the Nationals are tied for first place, with the best pitching staff in baseball, sporting a +39 run differential despite the fact they had their full, Opening Day lineup together for all of seven innings … on Opening Day. The pessimist will look at the fact…
Jun 29, 2014, 12:33 AM EDT
CHICAGO — Forget who you’re playing or what the circumstances suggest, a doubleheader sweep is no sure thing. Now play that doubleheader at the end of a 7-game road trip, in sweltering humidity interrupted only by a 55-minute downpour, needing to win both ends of the twinbill to salvage a series split and maintain your…
Jun 28, 2014, 10:55 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: If you’re going to spend the entire day and night at the ballpark, might as well win two ballgames. The Nationals will leave Chicago exhausted but happy to have taken both ends of their doubleheader with the Cubs, salvaging a 4-game series split at Wrigley Field. And few will be happier…
Jun 28, 2014, 5:48 PM EDT
CHICAGO — And we’re back for our second game of the day here at Wrigley, the final game of this series. The Nationals need another win to salvage a 4-game split, and to do that they’ll need to beat Jeff Samardzija and finally provide some run support for Blake Treinen. Treinen returns from Syracuse as…
Jun 28, 2014, 3:46 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: With a long day of baseball staring them in the face, the Nationals knew they needed to pour everything they had into the opener of today’s doubleheader at Wrigley Field, lest they drop their third straight to the Cubs (fourth straight overall) and face the daunting task of needing to beat…
Jun 28, 2014, 12:44 PM EDT
CHICAGO — Matt Williams today acknowledged, for the first time, that he knows what he’s going to do with the Nationals’ starting lineup once Bryce Harper returns. He’s just not ready to tell everyone what exactly that plan is. “Yeah, I’m not going to share it just yet,” the rookie manager said prior to Saturday’s…
Jun 28, 2014, 11:12 AM EDT
CHICAGO — Ernie Banks, as far as I know, isn’t here today. So I’ll just go ahead and say it: Let’s play two! Yes, the Nationals and Cubs have a day-night doubleheader on the docket, beginning with a 1:05 p.m. EDT opener and concluding with a 7:15 p.m. EDT nightcap (on Fox, FYI). If you…
Jun 27, 2014, 8:35 PM EDT
CHICAGO — It was still very early in a long ballgame, and there was plenty of time left for plenty more to develop at Wrigley Field. But when Ryan Zimmerman was thrown out at the plate in the top of the second inning Friday afternoon, and certainly when Danny Espinosa struck out with two men…
Jun 27, 2014, 6:57 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On the heels of a frustrating loss in the fog, the Nationals returned to Wrigley Field today hoping that blue skies would produce a happier result. Instead, they dropped another game to the last-place Cubs, this time in unsightly fashion. The Nats were held to two runs by Jason Hammel, who…
Jun 27, 2014, 3:28 PM EDT
CHICAGO — Way back on Sunday, as the Nationals wrapped up their homestand, Matt Williams mentioned that Ian Desmond and Jayson Werth were very much in need of a day off. Well, five days later, Werth has taken his break, sitting out the Nats’ series finale in Milwaukee on Wednesday afternoon. Desmond, though, has remained…
Jun 27, 2014, 12:45 PM EDT
CHICAGO — Hey, we can actually see the rooftops here today! There’s still some fog lingering way off in the distance, closer to Lake Michigan, but the skies are mostly clear directly over Wrigley Field, a pleasant change from last night’s surreal scene. It’s Tanner Roark on the mound today for the Nationals, and just…
Jun 27, 2014, 12:20 AM EDT
CHICAGO — Denard Span saw the ball go off Luis Valbuena’s bat, looked up to the sky and saw nothing but a cool fog that had enveloped Wrigley Field in the bottom of the sixth inning Thursday night. So the Nationals center fielder did the only thing he could in that moment: Throw his arms…
Jun 26, 2014, 10:46 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On a strangely fog-filled June evening at Wrigley Field, it wasn’t always easy to see things clearly. This much was clear, though: The Nationals weren’t in top form in their series opener against the last-place Cubs. Doug Fister labored, especially during a 3-run fourth inning, and allowed way more balls to…
Jun 26, 2014, 7:34 PM EDT
CHICAGO — Bryce Harper could be back in the Nationals’ lineup as soon as Monday, manager Matt Williams said. Harper, out since April 26 when he tore a ligament in his left thumb, is continuing his rehab assignment tonight, playing seven innings in right field for Class AA Harrisburg at Akron. He’s scheduled to play…
Jun 26, 2014, 4:39 PM EDT
CHICAGO — Hello from the one and only Windy City, where it’s a very pleasant late-June afternoon along Lake Michigan. The Nationals made the short drive down from Milwaukee after yesterday’s loss and now face an unusual, 4-games-in-3-days series against the Cubs. The schedule refresher: Night game today, mid-afternoon game tomorrow, day-night doubleheader Saturday, off…
Jun 26, 2014, 3:28 PM EDT
CHICAGO — Wilson Ramos, as planned, was activated off the 15-day disabled list today and will be behind the plate when the Nationals open a 4-game series with the Cubs tonight at Wrigley Field. The oft-injured catcher missed the last two weeks with a hamstring strain — his third in two seasons — but emerged…
Jun 26, 2014, 1:09 PM EDT
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, 6:00 AM EDT
If you couldn’t stay up til the final out was recorded at 1:34 a.m. EDT — or if you simply gave up after your TV inexplicably switched to a tummy tuck infomercial in the 14th inning — you missed a heck of a ballgame in Milwaukee last night/this morning. There were highlight-reel catches all over…
Jun 24, 2014, 4:49 PM EDT
Jordan Zimmermann grew up in tiny Auburndale, Wisc., about 180 miles northwest of Milwaukee. And tonight when the right-hander pitches for the Nationals at Miller Park, it’s believed the vast majority of his hometown will be there to watch in person. If history holds true, they’re in for a treat, because in two previous starts…
Jun 24, 2014, 3:51 PM EDT
Outfielder Michael A. Taylor and right-hander Lucas Giolito were selected as the Nationals’ representatives at next month’s All-Star Futures Game, confirmation of both prospects’ development and performance this season in the minor leagues. Taylor, who plays at Class AA Harrisburg, and Giolito, who plays at low-Class A Hagerstown, were named to the U.S. team that…
Jun 24, 2014, 12:34 PM EDT
ATLANTA BRAVES Much to the delight of local fans, the Braves are in the middle of a tough stretch. They went 2-4 against division rivals Philadelphia and Washington this past week, dropping them down to second place in the division. After losing eight out of the last 12 games, you wonder if the wheels are…
NL EAST STANDINGS
x-Clinched division title
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.
THU: 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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