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Washington Nationals

  1. “What the doctor ordered”

    Aug 20, 2014, 12:26 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    There are nights when the Nationals hope Stephen Strasburg takes the mound and does something like this, and then there are nights when the Nationals need Stephen Strasburg to take the mound and do something like this. It might sound harsh to suggest a team already on a 7-game winning streak needed eight innings of…

  2. Instant analysis: Nats 8, Diamondbacks 1

    Aug 19, 2014, 9:58 PM EDT

    AP

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: As much as they enjoyed their wild victories over the last few nights, the Nationals knew their bullpen had been taxed to extreme levels after back-to-back, extra-inning games. So the goal tonight against the Diamondbacks was simple: Try to take a sizable lead and get a bunch of innings out of…

  3. Around the NL East: Surprise contenders?

    Aug 19, 2014, 1:30 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    ATLANTA BRAVES  The good news for the Braves is that, after suffering through a brutal stretch, they’ve managed to rebound nicely by winning four straight games that included a sweep of the MLB-best Oakland Athletics. The bad news? The Nationals, the team they’re chasing in the division, have been scorching-hot and have won seven in…

  4. The state of the overworked Nationals bullpen

    Aug 19, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    As much as Matt Williams is thrilled to have seen his team win seven straight games, the last three of them in dramatic walk-off fashion, the last two of them in extra innings, the Nationals manager does realize there’s one caveat to all this recent excitement. “It doesn’t help your bullpen, for sure,” he said…

  5. LaRoche’s long-awaited walk-off moment

    Aug 19, 2014, 12:21 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    It used to cross Adam LaRoche’s mind when he stepped to the plate in the bottom of the ninth inning, or later, and realized a home run would win the game for his team. But at some point over the last 11 years, he realized it was doing him no good to worry about it.…

  6. Instant analysis: Nats 5, Diamondbacks 4 (11)

    Aug 18, 2014, 10:25 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Riding a season-high 6-game winning streak that included a weekend sweep of the contending Pirates, the Nationals opened a 4-game series against the non-contending Diamondbacks feeling mighty good about themselves. What they didn’t expect was a real battle against unknown Arizona left-hander Vidal Nuno, who went toe-to-toe with Jordan Zimmermann, and…

  7. UPDATED: Nats sign Schierholtz to minor-league deal

    Aug 18, 2014, 6:25 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Updated at 6:25 p.m. The Nationals signed Nate Schierholtz to a minor-league contract, and though the veteran outfielder will report to Class AAA Syracuse, there’s a good chance he’ll find his way to Washington in short order to bolster the club’s struggling bench for the stretch run. Schierholtz, who was designated for assignment by the…

  8. Game 123: Diamondbacks at Nats

    Aug 18, 2014, 3:31 PM EDT

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    Their season-opening Nos. 1 and 2 starters have struggled. Their young phenom outfielder hasn’t quite put it all together yet. Their face-of-the-franchise third baseman has missed most of the season due to injury. And their closer inspires confidence in few right now. … Yet the Nationals, owners of the best record in the NL, tonight…

  9. As curveball eludes him, Gonzalez’s pitch counts soar

    Aug 17, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Gio Gonzalez has never been the most efficient pitcher in the league, but his inefficiency has reached new depths this season, especially in the last month. The left-hander’s latest laborious outing: Last night’s 5-inning slog, in which he threw 102 pitches. This, on the heels of a 111-pitch, 4 2/3-inning start in Atlanta. Do the…

  10. A well-rounded rally

    Aug 17, 2014, 12:44 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    It began innocently enough, a leadoff walk drawn by rookie Michael Taylor with the Nationals trailing the Pirates by three runs in the bottom of the eighth. The sellout crowd of 41,880 applauded the effort but hardly sensed what that plate appearance was about to trigger. The vibe picked up more after Denard Span singled,…

  11. Instant analysis: Nats 4, Pirates 3

    Aug 16, 2014, 9:57 PM EDT

    AP

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Seeking only their second 5-game winning streak of the season, the Nationals took the field tonight knowing they’d need a quality start from struggling Gio Gonzalez to have a good chance. They got neither that nor much of anything at the plate against lefty Jeff Locke, putting themselves in a 3-0…

  12. Werth progressing toward Sunday return

    Aug 16, 2014, 6:33 PM EDT

    AP

    The Nationals expect to have Jayson Werth back in the lineup for Sunday’s series finale against the Pirates and might even have the veteran outfielder available off the bench tonight. Werth was due to take a full round of batting practice in the cage underneath the stands at Nationals Park this afternoon and otherwise participated…

  13. Game 121: Pirates at Nats

    Aug 16, 2014, 3:22 PM EDT

    Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER

    In their slow, mostly steady march to the top of the NL East, the Nationals have won five straight games only once this season, from June 28-July 2. Tonight they have a chance to match that streak, if they can take down the Pirates once again. They’ll need a better performance from Gio Gonzalez than…

  14. Nats pounce early, hang on late to beat Pirates

    Aug 16, 2014, 12:05 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    One by one, they stepped to the plate in the bottom of the first, hoping to put together quality at-bats but fully aware the percentages said more of them would make outs than didn’t. But then Denard Span beat out an infield single to get things started. And then Asdrubal Cabrera drew a walk to…

  15. Instant analysis: Nats 5, Pirates 4

    Aug 15, 2014, 10:11 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: After a sweep of the Mets that catapulted them to a 6-game lead in the NL East, the Nationals returned home for the first of 10 games in 10 days on South Capitol Street. They faced a Pirates club that holds the NL’s best record since May 2, but they quickly…

  16. Strasburg, Harper lead the way as Nats sweep Mets

    Aug 15, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    AP

    That the Nationals just swept the Mets in New York isn’t a major surprise. This is a team, in case you didn’t realize, that has now won 11 consecutive games at Citi Field. A loss in Flushing, that would have constituted a surprise. But the manner in which the Nationals won the last three nights,…

  17. It may not be easy this time, but that’s OK

    Aug 14, 2014, 6:00 AM EDT

    AP

    There was Kevin Frandsen’s complete mishandling of a routine fly ball, letting the game’s first run score. There were two more errors by Adam LaRoche and Wilson Ramos. There was a mini-meltdown of sorts by Jordan Zimmermann in the bottom of the seventh. And there was, of course, a heart attack of a ninth inning…

  18. Werth gets cortisone shot, out couple more days

    Aug 13, 2014, 5:40 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Jayson Werth was given a cortisone shot in his ailing right shoulder and will miss a couple more days, but the Nationals say an MRI revealed no structural damage and that the veteran outfielder shouldn’t need to spend any time on the disabled list. The MRI, performed in New York, showed only inflammation of the…

  19. Game 118: Nats at Mets

    Aug 13, 2014, 3:27 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    Two of the Nationals’ three regular outfielders are not in tonight’s lineup, for very different reasons. Denard Span, who streak of consecutive games reaching base came to an end last night at 36, gets a well-deserved and highly rare day off. How rare? Well, since returning from the 7-day concussion DL in mid-April, Span had…

  20. Nationals Stock Watch: Fister the ace

    Aug 13, 2014, 1:01 PM EDT

    Photo by USA Today

    We take a look at the Nationals’ past week, at a glance: Record: 4-2 Team slash: .257/.313/.462 Team ERA:  2.82 Runs per game:  5 STOCK UP Doug Fister, SP: 2-0/ 14.1 IP/ 0.00 ERA As he has for most of this season, Fister continues to be the rock of the Nationals’ rotation. In fact, it might be…

  21. Missed, but not squandered, opportunity

    Aug 11, 2014, 10:09 AM EDT

    AP

    ATLANTA — In the wake of yet another series loss at Turner Field, it’s easy to look at the Nationals and declare that they squandered an opportunity to step on the reeling Braves’ throats and create some major distance between themselves and their NL East rivals. And, to be sure, the Nats would have loved…

  22. Brain cramp

    Aug 11, 2014, 1:16 AM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    ATLANTA — He had been alternately dominant and maddening, striking out some batters at will yet unable to put away others, fighting for his life to get through the fifth inning with only one run on the scoreboard despite a massively high pitch count. And when he got Jason Heyward to tap a grounder to…

  23. Instant analysis: Braves 3, Nats 1

    Aug 10, 2014, 11:16 PM EDT

    USA Today Sports Images

    GAME IN A NUTSHELL: On the heels of their marathon, rain-delayed, 11-inning win early Sunday morning, the Nationals were grateful for a nationally televised Sunday night appearance at Turner Field. But they showed up a bit sluggish, especially at the plate against a very tough young Braves left-hander. Alex Wood dominated the Nationals’ lineup, allowing…

  24. Werth playing through AC joint inflammation

    Aug 10, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT

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    USA Today Sports Images

    ATLANTA — Jayson Werth returned to the Nationals’ lineup Sunday night, but the veteran right fielder will be trying to play through an inflammation in the AC joint of his right shoulder that has bothered him more than a week. Werth was unable to start either of the first two games of the Nationals’ series…

  25. Taylor called up, Souza placed on DL

    Aug 10, 2014, 7:01 PM EDT

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    AP

    ATLANTA — The Nationals, as expected, promoted Michael Taylor from Class AAA on Sunday, clearing a roster spot for their top outfield prospect by placing Steven Souza Jr. on the 15-day disabled list with a left shoulder contusion. Taylor was summoned by the Nationals on Saturday evening, pulled from Syracuse’s starting lineup at the last…

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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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