Sep 3, 2014, 12:51 AM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: It was billed as one of the best pitching matchups of the season, and it lived up to the billing for awhile. Clayton Kershaw and Doug Fister swapped zeroes into the fifth inning, leaving everyone with the sense one crucial mistake might prove the difference in the game. Turns out a…
Sep 2, 2014, 5:51 PM EDT
We’ve been anticipating this one for awhile now, ever since the pitching probables came out. It’s Doug Fister vs. Clayton Kershaw tonight in one of the premier matchups of the season, between the NL’s two best clubs. How good has Kershaw been? Well, consider that over his last 18 starts, he is 14-2 with a…
Sep 2, 2014, 1:07 PM EDT
ATLANTA BRAVES The Braves enter the regular season’s final month very much alive for a chance to play October baseball. Despite the early season injuries, the inconsistency, the losing streaks and all the other turmoil, they’ve weathered the storm with a solid late-August run to keep themselves afloat. After a 4-3 week that included back-to-back…
Sep 2, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT
The Nationals’ aren’t the best home-run-hitting team in the majors. Far from it. They didn’t even rank among MLB’s top-10 home run clubs entering play Monday. And the Nationals don’t boast one of the most-prodigious home-run hitters in baseball. Ian Desmond currently leads the way with 22 homers, and it’s unlikely anybody on the roster…
Sep 1, 2014, 4:52 PM EDT
They were swept in Philadelphia. They took 2 of 3 in Seattle. So, what does the final leg of perhaps the Nationals’ toughest road trip of the season have in store? We’ll start to find out tonight when they open a big, 3-game series at Dodger Stadium against the team directly behind them for the…
Sep 1, 2014, 4:18 PM EDT
The Nationals added six players to their roster Monday in the first round of September call-ups, promoting relievers Aaron Barrett, Xavier Cedeno and Blake Treinen, catcher Sandy Leon, first baseman/outfielder Tyler Moore and outfielder Steven Souza Jr. from Class AAA Syracuse. All six players will be active and available for Monday night’s series opener in…
Sep 1, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT
And so, August has come to an end, and what a month it was for the Nationals. It began with this team 10 games over .500, clinging to a 1 1/2-game lead over the Braves in the NL East. It ended with this team 19 games over .500, now up 6 games (though that number…
Aug 31, 2014, 7:07 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: After beating up on Felix Hernandez on Friday night and then riding Stephen Strasburg’s dominating start Saturday night, the Nationals found themselves in a fortuitous position this afternoon, with an opportunity to sweep the Mariners on the road and fully make up for the sweep they suffered in Philadelphia to begin…
Aug 31, 2014, 1:12 PM EDT
When they arrived in Seattle three days ago, reeling from a 3-game sweep in Philadelphia, who would imagined the Nationals would find themselves where they do today: With an opportunity to now sweep the Mariners after taking the first two games of this series in impressive fashion. To pull this off, the Nats will need…
Aug 28, 2014, 10:26 AM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — The Nationals arrived here late Sunday night, feeling like they could do no wrong after a 9-1 homestand catapulted them to the top of the NL standings and turned them into the talk of baseball. They left here late Wednesday night, feeling as down in the dumps as they’d been in quite some…
Aug 28, 2014, 12:43 AM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — When it happened over the weekend against the Giants, it felt like one blip on an otherwise stellar summer of pitching dominance. When it happened again Wednesday night against the Phillies, you started to wonder whether this has quickly become more than a mere blip. Doug Fister has been the Nationals’ workhorse this…
Aug 27, 2014, 10:47 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: After losing the first two games of his series in large part due to lights-out pitching performances by A.J. Burnett and Cole Hamels, the Nationals knew they needed a win tonight to avoid a sweep at the hands of the last-place Phillies. They had to feel good about their chances, with…
Aug 27, 2014, 6:30 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Adam LaRoche returned to the Nationals lineup Wednesday, confident the minor back injury that sidelined him Tuesday won’t be a major long-term problem. “I’ve had it before, and it’s not something where if I go play it can get much worse,” he said. “I know that from experience. I don’t have any fear…
Aug 27, 2014, 3:23 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — The last thing the Nationals want, on the heels of a 9-1 homestand, is to open this 9-game road trip by getting swept by the Phillies. But they’ll need a win in tonight’s series finale to prevent that from happening. The good news: Doug Fister is on the mound for the Nats, and…
Aug 27, 2014, 1:12 PM EDT
We take a look at the Nationals’ past week, at a glance: Record: 4-3 Team slash: .287/.366/.434 Team ERA: 3.34 Runs per game: 4.57 STOCK UP Asdrubal Cabrera, 2B: .300 AVG/ .417 OBP/ 2 HR How big of a pickup has Cabrera been? Ever since he arrived to Washington at the trade deadline, he’s been everything the…
Aug 27, 2014, 10:40 AM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — There was a time when a 6-inning, 3-run start would have disappointed Gio Gonzalez. But these days, the Nationals’ erratic left-hander is finding the positives in each of his outings, so his latest one Tuesday night against the Phillies left him more encouraged than discouraged. “It’s progress,” Gonzalez said. “Obviously, everyone wants to…
Aug 26, 2014, 11:52 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Off the bat, it looked like a groundout to the shortstop. Not the most routine of groundouts, but a play Ian Desmond figured to make. Leading off the bottom of the eighth of a tie game, Ben Revere rapped a sharp grounder slightly to Desmond’s right. The Nationals shortstop scooped it up and…
Aug 26, 2014, 9:32 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: After a fruitless night at the plate against A.J. Burnett on Monday, the Nationals knew they faced another stiff challenge Tuesday against longtime nemesis Cole Hamels. And for six innings, the Phillies lefty proved virtually unhittable, carrying a shutout on a scant 59 pitches. Gio Gonzalez wasn’t as effective — he…
Aug 26, 2014, 6:41 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Adam LaRoche was out of the Nationals’ lineup Tuesday night. Not because left-hander Cole Hamels was on he mound for the Phillies, but because of tightness in his back. “He’s been dealing with a tight back for three or four days,” manager Matt Williams said. “Today it’s a little worse. It’s an opportunity…
Aug 26, 2014, 3:33 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Despite the Phillies’ overall struggles this season, Cole Hamels remains as formidable as just about any other left-hander in the league. So Matt Williams is playing the percentages tonight, stacking his lineup with right-handed hitters. Out is Bryce Harper. Out is Adam LaRoche. In are Scott Hairston and Kevin Frandsen. Hairston has feasted…
Aug 26, 2014, 1:33 PM EDT
ATLANTA BRAVES With the way the Nationals have played the last two weeks, it’s pretty established they’re the cream of the NL East crop. Trailing Washington by 7.5 games, hopes of a division title seem slim if you’re the Braves. However, Atlanta is still in pretty good position for a wild card berth, sitting just…
Aug 26, 2014, 10:36 AM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Matt Williams is loathe to look ahead, certainly as far ahead as October when the calendar still reads August. We here at the Insider, on the other hand, don’t worry about such things. Especially with a very important date fast approaching. We’re five days away from baseball’s August 31 deadline to set postseason…
Aug 25, 2014, 11:50 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — The way things have been going lately, the Nationals weren’t surprised in the least to mount a last-ditch rally against Jonathan Papelbon with two outs in the ninth Monday night. The only surprise was that they couldn’t quite finish it off and wound up losing for only the second time in 14 days.…
Aug 25, 2014, 9:55 PM EDT
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: The Nationals arrived in Philadelphia sky-high after a 9-1 homestand that left them the hottest team in the majors. Now they faced the opener of a tough, 3-city, 9-game road trip, hoping to carry over some of the positive momentum from D.C. That proved more difficult than anticipated tonight, thanks to…
Aug 25, 2014, 6:29 PM EDT
PHILADELPHIA — Though he was out of the Nationals’ lineup Monday night against the Phillies, Asdrubal Cabrera insists the injury he sustained to his right side Sunday isn’t serious and he could play if absolutely needed. Cabrera hurt himself hitting a grounder to short during the sixth inning of Sunday’s win over the Giants, feeling…
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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.
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