Jun 15, 2014, 6:00 AM EST
Remember when the Nationals were baseball’s hottest team? Well, that was three whole days ago, and you’d be surprised how much can change in only three days. After a 4-1 loss to the Cardinals last night, the Nats now find themselves in a 3-game funk. And make no mistake, it qualifies as a funk, at…
Jun 14, 2014, 3:32 PM EST
There was a point back in April when Stephen Strasburg looked out of whack. He sported a 6.00 ERA, was surrendering more hits than he had at any previous time in his career and seemed to have trouble deciding when and how to use all four of his pitches. Then Strasburg faced the Cardinals on…
Jun 14, 2014, 6:00 AM EST
On the heels of what was — at least by one statistical measure — the best-pitched game in Nationals history, Jordan Zimmermann faced a daunting challenge trying to come anywhere close to duplicating his effort from five nights prior. Yet the right-hander very nearly did it last night in St. Louis, tossing his second straight…
Jun 13, 2014, 4:22 PM EST
Fresh off their impressive 3-of-4 series in San Francisco, the Nationals now conclude their 10-game road trip with a weekend series in St. Louis. The challenge is no easier over the next three days against a Cardinals club that has won 9 of the last 11 head-to-head meetings between these two teams, beginning with that…
Jun 13, 2014, 1:03 PM EST
Here are this week’s MLB Power Rankings featuring thoughts on each team from Mark Zuckerman, Chase Hughes and myself, Steve Roney: 1. Oakland Athletics (LW: 2) – Hughes: The Athletics host the Orioles right after the All-Star break. I’m sure their fans will be happy to see Manny Machado. 2. San Francisco Giants (LW: 1) – Hughes: They may…
Jun 13, 2014, 6:00 AM EST
The Nationals’ just-completed week out west wound up as successful as anyone could have realistically imagined beforehand. In taking 2 of 3 from the Padres, then taking 3 of 4 from the Giants, the Nats catapulted themselves into first place in the NL East and for the first time in 2014 looked very much like…
Jun 12, 2014, 6:45 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Considering they had already taken the first three games of a road series against a Giants club that had been baseball’s hottest team only a few days ago, anything the Nationals did today at AT&T Park would have been the cherry atop a very large, gooey sundae. So it’s tough to…
Jun 11, 2014, 8:32 PM EST
Wilson Ramos is headed back to the disabled list, once again sidelined with a leg injury. The Nationals catcher will be placed on the 15-day DL with a Grade 1 strained right hamstring, manager Matt Williams told reporters in San Francisco prior to Wednesday night’s game against the Giants, after hurting himself in the ninth…
Jun 11, 2014, 6:52 PM EST
In their quest to win their third straight in San Francisco and their 10th in 12 games overall, the Nationals will be short-handed tonight. Wilson Ramos, who tweaked his right hamstring stretching a base hit into a double in the ninth inning last night, is out of the lineup tonight. Whether Ramos, who has dealt…
Jun 11, 2014, 2:16 PM EST
We take a look at the Nationals’ past week, at a glance: Record: 6-1 Team slash: .273/.337/.457 Team ERA: 1.34 Runs per game: 6.42 STOCK UP Ian Desmond, SS: .333 AVG/2 HR/9 RBI/.750 SLG The Nationals’ offense continues to hit its stride, as different members of the lineup are taking turns getting hot, and this week it was…
Jun 11, 2014, 6:00 AM EST
The Nationals’ most-dominant stretch of baseball in some time had been notable for the number of blowout victories this club had been stringing together over the last two weeks. Last night’s 2-1 win in San Francisco, then, was the outlier of the group. This was no cakewalk. This was a nip-and-tuck ballgame the likes of…
Jun 10, 2014, 6:49 PM EST
We’ve said plenty about this remarkable run the Nationals are currently on, citing all the stats that have accompanied it, but the real question all along has been how long this run can continue. Especially against a tough opponent like the Giants and an opposing pitcher like Madison Bumgarner. The 24-year-old lefty has been among…
Jun 10, 2014, 6:00 AM EST
When Ian Desmond launched a 3-run homer off Texas’ Colby Lewis in the bottom of the fourth back on May 30, it was immediately wondered whether that sorely needed blast would serve as the catapult that finally got the Nationals going on a prolonged hot streak. But even the most optimistic of Nationals faithful couldn’t…
Jun 9, 2014, 6:21 PM EST
The Nationals are playing their best baseball of the season right now, having won seven of nine to propel themselves into a three-way tie for first place in the NL East with the Braves and Marlins. The one caveat: This hot streak has come against the struggling Rangers, Phillies and Padres. Tonight, the real test…
Jun 9, 2014, 4:03 PM EST
After one of the worst months of his career, Jordan Zimmermann turned in a week so dominant, the Nationals right-hander was deemed the best player in his league over the last seven days. Zimmermann has been named NL Player of the Week after a pair of electric pitching performances in which he tossed 17 scoreless…
Jun 8, 2014, 6:00 AM EST
First things first: Rafael Soriano threw a bad pitch to Yonder Alonso with two outs in the bottom of the ninth late last night in San Diego. A 1-0 fastball up in the zone and over the plate to Alonso, who sent it flying over the right-field fence at Petco Park, sending the game into…
Jun 7, 2014, 6:20 PM EST
The last time Blake Treinen started a game, the Nationals rotation was still trying to get itself on track. But in 12 games since then, Nats starters have been nothing short of fantastic, posting an MLB-best 2.38 ERA since May 23. Treinen has been out of the rotation since then, due to a rainout and…
Jun 7, 2014, 6:00 AM EST
There’s nothing like a long, coast-to-coast flight followed by a late-night game on the other side of the country to throw a ballclub out of rhythm. So it wouldn’t have been all that surprising had the Nationals taken the field last night in San Diego and looked a bit sluggish in the opener of their…
Jun 6, 2014, 6:50 PM EST
The Nationals just completed their best week of the season, winning 5 of 6 from the Rangers and Phillies. Now they face a more significant test: a 10-game road trip through San Diego, San Francisco and St. Louis, beginning tonight against the Padres. Can the Nats’ suddenly healthy and productive lineup remain potent in the…
Jun 6, 2014, 3:57 PM EST
On April 25, Erick Fedde took the mound in Las Vegas for the top of the seventh inning against New Mexico, his UNLV ballclub holding an 8-1 lead against their Mountain West Conference rivals. The tall right-hander threw a pitch and felt a sudden pain in his elbow. Fedde, as most 21-year-olds would, didn’t say…
Jun 5, 2014, 9:53 PM EST
Updated at 12:07 a.m. The story of the Nationals’ latest first-round draft pick should sound quite familiar to those who have followed this franchise over the last five years. Right-hander Erick Fedde, taken with the 18th overall pick in Thursday night’s MLB Draft, comes from Las Vegas, where he was high school teammates with none…
Jun 5, 2014, 1:28 AM EST
It’s only five games. That qualifier needs to be made. Five days from now, the storyline could be completely reversed. But over these last five games — four of them wins, including Wednesday night’s 8-4 victory over the Phillies — the Nationals haven’t merely looked like a team having a nice week. After two months…
Jun 4, 2014, 11:56 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: The Nationals have been waiting for weeks to go on a sustained run, a stretch where they’re firing on all cylinders, at the plate and on the mound. It may be too early to declare this the run they’ve been seeking, but they’re certainly on the right track. With yet another…
Jun 4, 2014, 6:38 PM EST
They got Wilson Ramos back from a broken bone in his hand. They got Adam LaRoche back from a strained quad muscle. And Tuesday night they got Ryan Zimmerman back from a fractured thumb. The only member of the Nationals’ Opening Day lineup still on the disabled list is Bryce Harper, and team officials are…
Jun 4, 2014, 3:25 PM EST
And so we officially move beyond Ryan Zimmerman Left Field Debut Day and into Ryan Zimmerman Regular Left Fielder Month. After last night’s successful return following 7 1/2 weeks on the DL, Zim is right back out there again, batting fifth and again starting in left field. Will he actually be tested defensively tonight? We…
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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