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Instant Analysis: Padres 4, Nats 2

Apr 27, 2014, 4:48 PM EST

Photo by the Associated Press. Photo by the Associated Press.

GAME IN A NUTSHELL: Taylor Jordan was pitching well through four innings for the Nationals, but was removed from the game after only 63 pitches. His velocity appeared down, which is concerning, but there was no immediate announcement as to why he was pulled.

Unfortunately for the Nationals, their bullpen could not pick up where Jordan left off. Ross Detwiler came in and allowed a run in the fifth inning, and was charged with another two after leaving in the sixth. Aaron Barrett inherited his baserunners and walked home the second and third run.

Despite going up 1-0 in the first inning, the Nationals went cold at the plate and saw their bullpen completely unravel to lose the game by a final score of 4-2. They are now 14-12 with 11 of their next 14 games on the road. The only home games they will play until May 16 are against the Dodgers.

HITTING LOWLIGHT: The Nationals actually began this game with back-to-back doubles by Anthony Rendon and Jayson Werth to take a 1-0 lead in the first inning. But soon after they went into a collective slump, getting only one of the next 19 batters on base. That was Danny Espinosa who took a pitch off his right knee in the second inning and was later replaced by Zach Walters in the top of the fifth.

Alex Kennedy recovered from his rough start to throw seven innings of one-run ball with three hits, no walks and nine strikeouts. He retired 16 straight at one point.

PITCHING HIGHLIGHT: Despite being pulled after just four innings, Jordan was cruising while on the mound. He got over his first inning woes – 8 ER in four games entering Sunday’s start – and got through the first three innings scoreless. He did allow one run on the fourth on a sacrifice fly by Jedd Gyorko, but all in all it was a solid outing.

The troubling part, however, is that Jordan’s velocity has continued to dip. In recent starts his fastball was topping out in the high-80s, but Sunday it wasn’t going much higher than 86. The Nats replaced him after four innings with Detwiler, despite Jordan being effective. We’ll see why they took him out so early after the game. Either way, this was likely his final start before Doug Fister returns from the disabled list.

KEY STAT: Nate McLouth hit a solo home run in the bottom of the eighth inning, his first of the season and first as a member of the Nationals. Before the at-bat he was 3-for-33 with one extra basehit in 2014 (20 games).

UP NEXT: The Nationals have Monday off before traveling to Houston, Tx. for a two-game series with the Astros. On the mound will be Gio Gonzalez (3-1, 3.00) and talented young right-hander Jarred Cosart (1-2, 6.12)

  1. David Proctor - Apr 27, 2014 at 4:51 PM

    Win the 2 in Houston and finish April at 16-12. That’s without Ramos and Fister the entire month, Zim for 3/4 of the month, Span a week and now Harper at the end. That’s also 5 games better than 2013. Relax, LOD.

    • texnat1 - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:56 PM

      I would love to see them take the two in Houston. Especially because its probably not realistic to hope for more than 500 ball out of the following 12 games given that 3 of the 4 series are on the road and two of them are against good teams (LAD and Oak).

  2. secretwasianman - Apr 27, 2014 at 4:51 PM

    5 and 6 on the home stand. Not exactly the way to win a division. Go Wizards

    • secretwasianman - Apr 27, 2014 at 4:52 PM

      Luv to relax. But 4.5 back already??? Oooh

      • David Proctor - Apr 27, 2014 at 4:55 PM

        The Cardinals are 4.5 back in their division, too. Nobody is panicking in STL.

      • Hiram Hover - Apr 27, 2014 at 5:40 PM

        DP – well, I think every fanbase has at least one secretwasianman. There’s probably some commenter on some STL blog spouting similar nonsense–and that guy doesn’t even have a hometown NBA team to root for.

        So when you think about it, our SWM is the lucky one.

  3. mauimo22 - Apr 27, 2014 at 5:02 PM

    Ian Kennedy.

    We gotta win these games. Probably used up our bats last 2 nights with 16+ hits. Shoulda saved some cheese doodles for Grandma!

  4. dcwx61 - Apr 27, 2014 at 5:06 PM

    Hard to beat Ian Kennedy any day. Could have won Thursday though

    • David Proctor - Apr 27, 2014 at 5:22 PM

      Yes, Thursday’s loss hurts more than this one. Today, you just tip your cap to a great pitching performance. They happen and it’s not always offensive ineptitude.

      • Eric - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:01 PM

        I mean….we walked home the difference…otherwisebwe would’ve had extra innings…

  5. Another Tyler - Apr 27, 2014 at 5:23 PM

    Wouldn’t it be ironic of Robbie Ray pitches for the Tigers before Fister pitches for the Nats?

    • Another Tyler - Apr 27, 2014 at 5:23 PM


  6. David Proctor - Apr 27, 2014 at 5:30 PM

    Chase Hughes ‏@chasehughesCSN now
    Espinosa said he’ll take tomorrow off and see how he feels Tue. If #Nats were playing tomorrow, he’s not sure he’d be able to go.

    Good grief, we can’t afford more losses.

    • Eric - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:03 PM


  7. secretwasianman - Apr 27, 2014 at 5:39 PM

    Steve Lambordozzi would have been nice

    • texnat1 - Apr 27, 2014 at 11:14 PM

      Are you honestly complaining that the Nats packaged Lombo for Fister?

  8. Candide - Apr 27, 2014 at 5:56 PM

    Apart from the game itself, here’s what went right:

    1) We got our bobbleheads.
    2) The Army chorus did the best Star-Spangled Banner I’ve ever heard.

    Here’s what went wrong:

    1) The usher in our section regularly let people go to their seats between pitches.
    2) The lady behind me kept kicking my butt in the narrow space between my seat back and seat bottom, until I told her what she was doing. She was very embarrassed and apologized profusely. Then she kicked me a couple of times a few innings later.
    3) Six year-old kid to our right kept getting up. The fifth (or was it sixth? I lost count) time was around the 6th inning and I told Cunegonde that when he came back, we were going to have a little discussion.

    They were gone for quite a while, making us think they’d decided to watch the game from some vantage point where Precious Q. Snowflake could run around all he wanted. Well, he came back during the 7th inning stretch, and got past me without any discussion. Then, two minutes later – I am not exaggerating – he got up again. I stopped him.

    Me: “Okay, you’re done with this up and down business, right?”
    Him, smiling: (Shakes head “no.”)
    Me (pointing my finger in his face): “You need to sit down and stay down; you’re becoming annoying.”

    He didn’t say a word (and neither did his parents, fortunately for them), but sat down and stayed down until he and his parents left during the 8th inning.

    You want to get up every five minutes? Stay home and watch the game on TV. Cunegonde didn’t want me to say anything, but I paid a lot more for those tickets than that kid did, and it’s my game, too.

    I hate Precious Little Snowflakes, and their parents who won’t control them.

    • natsfan1a - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:43 PM

      I got my bobble, too. Yay.

      I feel your pain on the usher. Our guy today was really good about holding people until opportune moments arose.

    • natsfan1a - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:49 PM

      On another note, we were once at a game where a tyke kept walking over and standing against the glass at the front of the section. Each time this happened, those who were sitting in rows behind him (including me) could not see the batter. I finally said to his mom, “Would you mind having him sit down? We can’t see the batter when he’s standing there.” She didn’t say anything but I think she took offense, as they left not long after.

      • Candide - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:52 PM

        She took offense that you complained that you objected to her Precious Little Snowflake’s obstructing your view of the game?

        She can go piss up a rope. You paid to see a game, not her kids.

    • secretwasianman - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:18 PM


    • secretwasianman - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:21 PM

      I get adults that do this a t Redskins games because God forbid the go 13 minutes without a beer.

    • dcwx61 - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:39 PM

      But who controls the grumpy adults ?

      • Candide - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:55 PM

        They can grump all they want. I have a right to see the game I paid for. You don’t want me to dress down your kids, all you need to do is control them yourself.

        I noticed that they had the text number to complain about someone interfering with your enjoyment of the game on display out near the Red Porch All Game Long. If a parent won’t control his kids and my talking to the kids has no effect, I wouldn’t hesitate to call.

        Again, I PAID for my ticket; the kids did not.

      • dcwx61 - Apr 29, 2014 at 5:33 PM

        Talk to the adults…Kids are kids

  9. idus1926 - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:20 PM

    It is clear now that we are exactly in the same situation as we were last year. Offensibly, even with the good addition of Rendon, we are no better and Mitch Williams is a bust. A manager has two important responsibilities: keepeng the team on even keel and handling the late inning pitching changes. Everything else is secondary.
    Like Davey, Williams has no idea about handling the pitchers and has the same, stupid, old baseball mentality: “you created your mess, you clean it up”. The ultimate responsibility is, of course, Rizzo’s.

    • Nats Amore - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:39 PM

      I’m assuming you meant *Matt* Willians, although Mitch Williams was definitely the kind of player who could fire up a team.

      • idus1926 - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:33 PM

        Of corse, Matt, sorry.

    • Eric - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:04 PM

      Pretty sure we’re leaps and bounds better offensively than we were this time last year; it’s our pitching that’s fallen way off.

      And, yeah, Matt Williams.

      But, these are just meaningless facts…

      • David Proctor - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:24 PM

        We’re near the top of the league in OBP, SLG, Runs and just about every offensive category.

      • Eric - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:47 PM

        Gratzie for the deets

    • NatsLady - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:52 PM

      Were you watching the same game I was at?

      (1) Matty took Jordan out after he only gave up ONE run, after it was clear he was struggling and his velocity was down. He did NOT let Jordan stay in a tie game for another inning “to get a chance at a win.” No sir, he did not.

      (2) Matty put in Detwiler who is SUPPOSED to be a long reliever. Detwiler also faltered, and Matty had Aaron Barrett warm up as soon as he could. He removed Detwiler as soon as Barrett was ready, in the middle of an inning, and did not leave Detwiler to clean up his own mess, he put Barrett in to clean up Detwiler’s mess.

      (3) Barrett has been pretty much lights out, but he UNEXPECTEDLY lost his control point. Maybe he should have gotten Blevins up ONE batter sooner, but he got him up pretty promptly and removed Barrett ASAP, and brought Blevins in to clean up Barrett’s mess.

      You tell me exactly WHICH pitcher was left in to “clean up his own mess”???????? Jordan, Detwiler and Barrett were all removed as soon as it was apparent they didn’t have “it.” None of the other three (Blevins, Storen, Clippard made any mess to clean up,, though Clip got lucky after walking the lead-off batter.

      • letswin3 - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:26 PM

        Thanks, NL. I didn’t want to take the time to make it clear that Matt Williams did everything he could, and that this poster was obviously watching another game where Miller Huggins was managing the Yankees.

      • dcwx61 - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:38 PM

        Miller Huggins died the day Larapin Lou hit 4 dingers

  10. unterp - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:36 PM

    looking forward to seeing Nationals coming back from 9-11 games back by June 1st…

    • secretwasianman - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:28 PM

      Lol. Careful though those negative predictions will win you no friends here.

  11. secretwasianman - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:28 PM

    Just not in the standings.

  12. idus1926 - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:40 PM

    Plus, we can hit occasionally against relief pitchers or against fourt or fifth starters. It seems that we are not prepared against the opposing pitchers but everybody simply follows his own hitting philosophy. Desmond swings at the first pitch, Werth never does.. Clearly there is no game plan.

    • David Proctor - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:51 PM

      “Plus, we can hit occasionally against relief pitchers or against fourt or fifth starters”

      Andrew Cashner was the Padres ace, their undisputed #1. We beat him yesterday. Kennedy is their #2. We also beat Fernandez and Wacha.


  13. Natsfool - Apr 27, 2014 at 7:55 PM

    The question I had after 2013 was whether the Nats underperformed or were just an average team. I think we can conclude now that they are just an average team that is over-hyped. Looking like the Wiz are a better organization now. Never thought I would say that.

    • secretwasianman - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:15 PM

      I concur

    • David Proctor - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:05 PM


  14. NatsLady - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:04 PM

    I’m not sure what the “game plan” was supposed to be against Kennedy and the Padres’ bullpen. This is not a case where you try to run up the starter’s pitch count to get to the bullpen, because the Pads’ bullpen is excellent. So you do the best you can against the starter, and Kennedy was on his game. Also, Werth got robbed, as did Lobaton (of course, Rendon & co committed some robbery themselves).

    Looking at the game overall, really, it was clean and well-played on both sides.

    The difference was, their starter pitched well. Our starter (who isn’t even our fifth starter, but more like our sixth) gave four innings when he had a low-grade fever.Two relievers were terrible, but MW limited the damage by removing them as soon as possible. Defence was sharp, very sharp in fact, except for Desi’s almost error in the 9th that turned into a double play. They didn’t make any mistakes, except perhaps that one baserunning mistake. ALR, Desi and Rendon made highlight reel plays. Sometimes you just get beat. I’m not worrying about this one.

    • NatsLady - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:10 PM

      What I am worried about is the number of regulars we are doing without.

      And Span appears to be in another slump. I’ve noticed that he hits hard fouls to the left side, so he’s clearly trying to get away from those weak grounders and popups to the 2nd baseman. As yet, he hasn’t been able to straighten out the fouls and turn them into singles or doubles but if that approach starts to work for him, it will be great.

    • Hiram Hover - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:42 PM


      Love the insight, and the research you bring to your comments here and at your blog. Keep it up!

    • texnat1 - Apr 27, 2014 at 11:09 PM

      They actually did do a good job of running up his pitch count to get to the bullpen. He was at 100, but they still brought him out to pitch the 7th. Can’t do anything about that. And it’s actually a minor victory to get a guy that dominant out of the game after 7.

  15. Drew - Apr 27, 2014 at 8:05 PM

    While Robbie Ray is doing well at AAA for Detroit, Nate Karns is really struggling at AAA for Tampa.

    Through five starts Karns is 2-2, but he has an eye-popping 8.02 ERA. He’s allowed 19 earned runs in 21.3 innings.

    That team must really hit. Otherwise, how’d he win two games?

    • David Proctor - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:04 PM

      Ray is probably going to replace Anibal Sanchez in Detroit’s rotation. He could pitch in the majors before Doug Fister. Ironic, I suppose. But I’ll still take our end of that deal.

    • Hiram Hover - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:36 PM

      Karns had one very good start (7IP, 0 runs), one ok start (only 1 ER, but only last 5 IP), and several complete stinkers, inc. 2 in which he didnt make it make it thru 3 innings.

      I was happy with that deal for Lobaton when it was made, and even happier now.

      Funny about Ray starting a big league game this season before Fister, I suppose. Let’s see how much each one contributes to his team over the season and see who’s smiling come the fall.

      Of course, even if Rizzo hadn’t made the deal for Fister, Ray wouldn’t have been starting for the Nats in April/May anyway. So good for him, and good for us. For Detroit, not so much.

  16. Drew - Apr 27, 2014 at 9:55 PM

    Lou Gehrig hit four homers in a game in 1932. Miller Huggins had died in 1929.

    The New York managerial news that stole Lou’s thunder was Giants skipper John McGraw announcing his retirement.

  17. idus1926 - Apr 27, 2014 at 10:58 PM

    We beat some good pitchers because our pitching was good in these games and our overall run production is meaningless because we scored a lot of meaningless run.

  18. Sec 3 My Sofa - Apr 28, 2014 at 9:18 AM

    Testy testy 123 …





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