Aug 8, 2014, 4:13 PM EST
ATLANTA — Hello from Turner Field, which doesn’t exactly look ready for baseball at this moment. It has been absolutely pouring here for the last hour, and there’s no let-up in sight. Really, the whole weekend looks bad, so who knows what that means for this crucial, 3-game series between the Nationals and Braves. If…
Aug 7, 2014, 11:25 AM EST
After bouncing back on Wednesday night with a 7-1 win over the Mets, the Nationals have a chance to end their homestand with two straight victories before heading to Atlanta to face the Braves. Jordan Zimmermann (7-5, 3.00) will take the mound in his 23rd start of the season. The right-hander is coming off one of…
Aug 7, 2014, 12:07 AM EST
Debate all you want whether he’s the ace of the Nationals’ staff, the stopper, the best starter, whatever designation comes to mind. Doug Fister doesn’t care what title he holds right now. The only thing that matters to the right-hander is that he keeps winning games for his team. And that’s something Fister’s teammates notice,…
Aug 6, 2014, 9:37 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On the heels of a tough loss, who do the Nationals give the ball to? Doug Fister. The formula has worked all season, and it worked again tonight. Fister was dominant yet again, shutting out the Mets into the eighth inning without so much as breaking a sweat before getting charged…
Aug 6, 2014, 6:09 PM EST
Matt Williams quashed any speculation the Nationals would consider demoting the struggling Bryce Harper to the minors on Wednesday afternoon, criticizing reporters who may have thought his words on the subject during an earlier radio interview suggested it was a possibility. “I will caution everybody in this room: The minute you think you can read…
Aug 6, 2014, 3:21 PM EST
There’s nobody the Nationals would rather have on the mound right now after a loss than Doug Fister, who has developed into something of their stopper over the course of this season. The big right-hander is 6-2 when starting a game following a Nationals loss, so he’s the right man for the job tonight as…
Aug 6, 2014, 11:00 AM EST
Bryce Harper is searching at the plate, this much is obvious. Every time it appears the young slugger is headed on the right track, he falls back into a mini-slump and starts flailing at pitches he has little chance of hitting with authority. Harper now has stepped to the plate 205 times this season, a…
Aug 5, 2014, 11:57 PM EST
Here is the current state of the Nationals, summed up in one inning of baseball played Tuesday night during a 6-1 loss to the Mets: They scored a run without producing a hit. Then their first hit of the game actually prevented a run from scoring. Something’s just not adding up at the moment for…
Aug 5, 2014, 10:18 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Stuck in a disappointing stretch of baseball, the Nationals hoped to get back on track against a Mets club they have owned since late last season, winning 10 of their last 11 head-to-head meetings. Instead, they squandered a bunch of early opportunities against right-hander Zack Wheeler and couldn’t overcome Gio Gonzalez’s…
Aug 5, 2014, 6:43 PM EST
Erick Fedde heads to Viera, Fla., Wednesday to begin the long, slow rehab from Tommy John surgery, but before embarking on that monotonous journey, the Nationals’ top draft pick got to enjoy a whirlwind day in the District. Fedde, the 16th overall pick in the June draft out of UNLV, toured Washington and then spent…
Aug 5, 2014, 5:15 PM EST
Updated at 5:15 p.m. Trying to bolster a talented bullpen that has appeared worn down in recent weeks, the Nationals acquired veteran left-hander Matt Thornton off waivers from the Yankees. The Nationals aren’t giving up a player in a trade for Thornton; they simply were awarded a waiver claim and thus are responsible only for…
Aug 5, 2014, 3:35 PM EST
After a quick, makeup game with the Orioles, the Nationals now wrap up their homestand with a 3-game series against a Mets club they’ve beaten 12 of their last 13 meetings. They’ll be without Wilson Ramos, who was placed on the paternity leave list in anticipation of the birth of his first child. Jose Lobaton…
Aug 5, 2014, 2:02 PM EST
The Nationals placed Wilson Ramos on the paternity leave list and recalled fellow catcher Sandy Leon from Class AAA Syracuse to take a roster spot after Ramos’ wife gave birth to the couple’s first child. Ramos’ wife, Yeli, gave birth Tuesday morning to a baby girl in the Washington area. Her husband left Nationals Park…
Aug 5, 2014, 1:07 PM EST
ATLANTA BRAVES What has happened to the Braves? After a stretch where it looked like the race for the division title would be neck-and-neck with Washington, Atlanta has suddenly fallen on hard times. The Braves are in the midst of a six-game losing streak and currently sit three games back of first place. Getting swept…
Aug 5, 2014, 12:38 AM EST
A manager has a split-second to make an in-game decision, and he must consider all sorts of factors in that split-second afforded him before somebody has to step to the plate or throw a pitch. As soon as Wilson Ramos singled to right-center in the bottom of the sixth Monday night, Matt Williams had a…
Aug 4, 2014, 10:17 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Thanks to a rainout last month, the final chapter of this year’s Battle of the Beltways was bumped to tonight, a 1-game makeup to decide whether this would end up a 4-game split or a 3-1 series victory for the Orioles. By night’s end, this series had turned as orange as…
Aug 4, 2014, 5:19 PM EST
There’s something about July that seems to bring the best out of Jayson Werth. The Nationals right fielder was named NL Player of the Month on Monday, the second consecutive July he has earned the award. Werth hit .337 with 11 doubles, six homers, 24 RBI and a 1.133 OPS while also leading the league…
Aug 4, 2014, 3:09 PM EST
Though they faced each other three times last month, the Nationals and Orioles knew their annual Battle of the Beltways wouldn’t be completed until tonight, when the two clubs could play their makeup game required from a rainout at Nationals Park. Baltimore took two of those first three games, so the Nats need a win…
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…
Aug 2, 2014, 11:58 PM EST
By the fourth inning, the Nationals led by 11 runs, turning the Phillies pitching staff into mincemeat and allowing everyone to breathe a sigh of relief and just play out the string under no pressure. But when Saturday night’s game was only two batters into the bottom of the first, when the outcome was still…
Aug 2, 2014, 10:25 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: How about we just do “Game in a word” tonight? The answer is: Rout. OK, a few more details than that. The Nationals annihilated the Phillies pitching staff, starting with A.J. Burnett, who let six of the 11 batters he faced reach safely, capped by Anthony Rendon’s 3-run homer in the…
Aug 2, 2014, 6:15 PM EST
Though he has begun to see success again since the All-Star break, hitting .304 with an .820 OPS over his last 14 games, Bryce Harper’s swing remains something of a work-in-progress. Harper continues to tinker with his batting stance on a nightly basis, often making tweaks from one at-bat to the next. And as he…
Aug 2, 2014, 3:30 PM EST
The bad news: The Nationals have lost six of their last nine. The good news: The Braves also have lost six of their last nine. So the Nats’ lead in the NL East remains 1 1/2 games, despite their recent struggles. They’ll try to get back on track tonight after dropping the first two games…
Aug 1, 2014, 11:24 PM EST
There are nights when a manager will explain a loss away by claiming his guys hit the ball hard, but everyone knows it’s mere lip service for an otherwise lackluster performance at the plate. And then there are nights when a manager will say it, and there isn’t a soul in the building who could…
Aug 1, 2014, 9:36 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: The Nationals, to the surprise of nobody, got another strong start from Doug Fister. They got some quality defense from a host of players, including Jayson Werth and the just-acquired Asdrubal Cabrera. And they consistently hit the ball hard against Philadelphia right-hander Roberto Hernandez. Sounds like the formula for a win,…
FINAL NL EAST STANDINGS
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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