Apr 17, 2014, 6:00 AM EST
We begin with a caveat that should be included in just about any analysis written about a major-league ballclub before the calendar shifts to May: It’s early, so it’s entirely possible this trend won’t sustain itself over the full season. But it has become the defining quality of the 2014 Nationals, at least to date:…
Apr 16, 2014, 9:48 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Desperate to close out a rough road trip on a high note, the Nationals found themselves in a familiar position tonight: Trailing early. Derek Dietrich’s fourth-inning homer off Tanner Roark left the Nationals in a 3-0 hole and surely left some wondering whether this would continue to spiral downward as several…
Apr 16, 2014, 3:40 PM EST
On the heels of a blowout loss last night, which came on the heels of a sweep in Atlanta last weekend, the Nationals wrap up their road trip tonight facing quite a stiff challenge: Jose Fernandez. The reigning NL Rookie of the Year is on the mound for the Marlins, having thoroughly dominated the Nats…
Apr 14, 2014, 6:00 AM EST
ATLANTA — Ever since declaring himself “pretty lost right now” at the plate nine days ago, Bryce Harper has been reluctant to say much of anything about himself. Even though the results of the last week suggest he’s anything but lost anymore. “I feel pretty good,” was the extent of Harper’s self-evaluation Sunday evening after…
Apr 13, 2014, 6:33 PM EST
ATLANTA — It would be one thing if the Nationals’ struggles against the Braves were limited to one bad weekend, as was the case the last three days at Turner Field. Or a couple of bad series, as has been case the last 10 days. But the lopsided nature of this NL East rivalry has…
Apr 13, 2014, 4:32 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: The Nationals arrived at Turner Field today reeling from injuries to Ryan Zimmerman and Denard Span and from back-to-back losses to a Braves club that has completely owned them the last two seasons. Could they find a way to salvage one weekend victory against their division rivals, as they did last…
Apr 13, 2014, 1:11 PM EST
ATLANTA — Ryan Zimmerman and Denard Span provided updates on their respective injuries Sunday morning, each maintaining upbeat spirits after getting hurt on freak plays over the weekend. Zimmerman, who fractured his right thumb diving back into second base while getting picked off Saturday night, was wearing a splint and will be examined Monday by…
Apr 13, 2014, 11:46 AM EST
ATLANTA — The Nationals are a beaten-up bunch right now. Both in the physical sense, given the mounting injuries that culminated last night with Ryan Zimmerman fracturing his right thumb. And in the pure baseball sense, too, given two straight losses to the Braves to begin this weekend and four losses in five head-to-head games…
Apr 13, 2014, 9:00 AM EST
ATLANTA — Matt Williams sat back in his office chair at Turner Field and contemplated yet another question about yet another injury to yet another key member of his starting lineup. “It is what it is,” the first-year Nationals manager said. “Nobody’s going to feel sorry for us. Gotta play.” That’s all Williams and anybody…
Apr 13, 2014, 12:06 AM EST
Updated at 12:06 a.m. ATLANTA — A Nationals club already reeling from several injuries to key players now will be without another lineup stalwart for an extended period of time after Ryan Zimmerman fractured his right thumb during Saturday night’s loss to the Braves. Zimmerman, who hurt himself while getting picked off second base in…
Apr 12, 2014, 10:43 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: It’s a Nats-Braves game in Atlanta, so of course something strange was going to happen. Like Nate McLouth dropping a routine flyball while trying to transfer the ball to his throwing hand. Or Adam LaRoche cleanly catching a low line drive but having no ability to question the call of a…
Apr 12, 2014, 6:56 PM EST
ATLANTA — A Nationals club that already has had to deal with injuries to several key regulars in the season’s first two weeks has added another name to the fray, placing Denard Span on the 7-day concussion disabled list after the outfielder’s scary collision with Atlanta’s Dan Uggla during Friday night’s game at Turner Field.…
Apr 12, 2014, 3:36 PM EST
ATLANTA — So, what do the Nationals and Braves have in store for us tonight? If I were a betting man — and I’m not — I would take the odds on this being another close ballgame, likely requiring more than nine innings to be decided. Why? Because of the last seven games played between…
Apr 12, 2014, 10:48 AM EST
ATLANTA — There were no shortage of storylines to emerge from last night’s wild, 7-6, 10-inning loss at Turner Field. I focused more on the big picture in my game story, about the Nationals’ penchant for losing these kind of games to the Braves, but there were plenty more nuggets worth revisiting. Here’s a run-through…
Apr 12, 2014, 1:19 AM EST
ATLANTA — There’s something about these games between the Nationals and Braves, something that elevates them from mere afterthoughts in a 162-game season into epic clashes with twists and turns and oddities that just don’t seem to happen against any other opponent. There’s also something about the most-common result of these nip-and-tuck games: The Braves…
Apr 11, 2014, 11:30 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Not even Tolstoy would have enough ink to cram every detail of this ballgame into one leather-bound book, but we’ll try to present the Cliff Notes’ version… Tanner Roark was beaten around for four early runs, putting the Nationals in another early hole. Ryan Zimmerman’s bomb off Julio Teheran in the…
Apr 11, 2014, 6:35 PM EST
ATLANTA — Doug Fister took another key step toward his eventual return from a strained lat muscle on Friday, throwing 35 pitches in a bullpen session at Turner Field and reporting no problems with either his side or his elbow. “Really impressive,” manager Matt Williams said. “Threw it where he wanted to, had good life,…
Apr 11, 2014, 3:56 PM EST
ATLANTA — Hello from Turner Field, where tonight the Nationals (owners of a best-in-baseball 7-2 record) open a big, three-game series with the Braves (who after losing two of three to the Mets sit at 5-4 overall). As has been noted, the Nats found themselves with the exact same record one year ago, facing the…
Apr 10, 2014, 1:02 AM EST
It took 62 tries, not until a June 9 doubleheader against the Twins, before the 2013 Nationals came from three runs down to win a ballgame. Only eight games into the 2014 season, the Nationals have already done it twice. And after Wednesday’s dramatic, back-and-forth, plucked-out-of-thin-air, 10-7 victory over the Marlins, it was perhaps fair…
Apr 9, 2014, 11:03 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Where to begin? We’ll start with Jordan Zimmermann, who was downright awful in getting roughed up for five runs in only 1 2/3 innings, putting his teammates in a quick 5-0 hole. Slowly but surely, though, the Nationals got themselves back into it. Craig Stammen was brilliant out of the bullpen,…
Apr 9, 2014, 6:32 PM EST
Having successfully made it through two days of rest and then two days of limited throwing with a new sidearm motion, Ryan Zimmerman returned to the Nationals lineup Wednesday night, plugged back into his usual spot at third base and hoping he can make it through the season with no more disruptions. “It’s a constant…
Apr 9, 2014, 3:27 PM EST
Ryan Zimmerman, as promised, is back in the Nationals’ lineup. And he’s back at third base, hoping to battle his way through a bad shoulder by altering his throwing motion, dipping down to go sidearm all the time after committing two painful errors throwing overhand last week. Whether this experiment works remains to be seen.…
Apr 9, 2014, 10:42 AM EST
Though he had seen occasional action at third base from time to time, Anthony Rendon had made the mental switch to second base last summer, once he arrived in Washington and found himself with an opportunity to play every day at an unfamiliar position. His defensive work has paid dividends; he has become a quality…
Apr 8, 2014, 11:57 PM EST
We’ve already seen in this young season the Nationals run themselves out of a potential victory with some over-aggressiveness on the bases. Painful as their 2-1 loss to the Braves in Friday’s home opener was, players insisted they’ll benefit in the long run if they keep applying pressure the way new manager Matt Williams has…
Apr 8, 2014, 10:06 PM EST
GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On a chilly April evening, the pitchers figured to be ahead of the hitters. And sure enough, that was true for Gio Gonzalez and Henderson Alvarez. The two young starters combined to allow only one run through 5 1/2 innings. That’s not to say Gonzalez was in top form; he racked…
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 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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- Werth shooting for opener but will be cautious
- Escobar '100 percent committed' to new position
- Why Harper's confidence is a good sign for Nats
- A year older, Rendon ready for the long grind
- Nats' minor league affiliate gets new ownership
- Harper on Nats signing Scherzer: 'Where's my ring?'
- Report: Ichiro happy to be away from Yankees' manager Girardi
- Full roster has reported, but Werth still rehabbing
- Wilson Ramos talks Nats' stacked rotation, personal goals
- After whirlwind debut, Treinen finds comfort zone