Saturday, August 11, 2012

Instant analysis: Nats 6, D'backs 5

US Presswire photo
Michael Morse ... uh, I'm not sure how to finish this caption.
Game in a nutshell: What could have been a nice pitchers' duel between Edwin Jackson and Wade Miley instead turned into a slugfest almost from the moment each guy toed the rubber in the first inning. Jackson gave up four early runs and looked to be in serious trouble, only to right his ship for a little while and reach the sixth inning. That bought some time for the Nationals' lineup to figure out Miley and torch the NL Rookie of the Year candidate for six runs (five in the top of the fifth alone). Perhaps the most credit for this victory, though, goes to Washington's bullpen, which managed to strand runners in scoring position in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings before Tyler Clippard closed it out for his 24th save. Thus, the Nationals extended their winning streak to a season-high eight games. At at 71-43, they continue to hold baseball's best record by three full games.

Hitting highlight: It's amazing what a difference some depth has done for the Nationals lineup. With Jayson Werth back healthy and just about everyone contributing in some way, the Nats are capable of exploding for a big inning at any moment. Which they did in the top of the fifth, plating five runs on five hits: a Steve Lombardozzi bunt single, a Werth RBI double, a Ryan Zimmerman two-run single, a Michael Morse RBI double and a Jesus Flores RBI single. Remember when it looked like this team was seriously lacking in offensive ability? Yeah, not so much anymore.

Pitching lowlight: This was a laborious outing for Jackson, who gave up runs in the first, second and third innings, gave up five extra-base hits and needed 111 pitches to navigate his way through 5 2/3 innings. Not that the start was entirely negative for the right-hander. He faced the minimum in the fourth and fifth innings and struck out three batters in a row at one point. It wasn't a high-quality start, but Jackson did manage to get past his early struggles and actually depart with the Nationals holding a lead.

Key stat: Jackson recorded the 51st win by a Nationals starter this season. That's only one shy of the team record for an ENTIRE season, set by the 2005 rotation.

Up next: The series concludes with a Sunday matinee inside Chase Field. Left-handers Ross Detwiler and Patrick Corbin square off at 4:10 p.m. EDT.

56 comments:

Ghost Of Steve M. said...

Another signature win! Kardiac Kids

MicheleS said...

Mark, that is the best picture EVER!!!

WOOOOO HOOOOOO!! 71 wins and the Barves gain no ground!!!

MicheleS said...

Also, i would like to comment that since Werth has been back, when he has started or appeared in a game, the Nats are 10-0. Just Sayin..

Drew said...

My goodness, what a team. They just keep on coming.

Even down 4-1 you just had a feeling that this was far from over.

mayhemnsuz said...

I second that Woooo hoooo! Was working tonight and followed this one on twitter. Which was fairly unbelievable at times...

A DC Wonk said...

- I'm worried about Clip
- He needs another pitch
- When was the last time he had a clean 123 inning in a close game?

Oh wait. Never mind ;-)

NatsLady said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Swift Eagle said...

Down 4-1, on the road, no problem..A comeback win, and of the 4 All-Stars, only Harper even made an appearance (as a late inning sub)

T-E-A-M

rogieshan said...

71-43. .500 ball the rest of the way will still produce 95 wins. Yep, it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

ehay2k said...

Mark Z, this amazed me: "Key stat: Jackson recorded the 51st win by a Nationals starter this season. That's only one shy of the team record for an ENTIRE season, set by the 2005 rotation."

OK, can we all agree to officially ban any comparisons to the 2005 team and their second half collapse? (Those are RSox/Cubs thoughts, bro.)

Dryw Loves the Nats said...

I feel a lot like Mikey Mo looks up there!! GYFNG!!!

baseballswami said...

Raise your hand if you had your doubts when it was 4-1. Why do we doubt them? They just amaze me every single day.Clip used like 5 pitches?

Theophilus T. S. said...

If I were Johnson, Jackson would watch the playoffs sitting next to Henry Rodriguez.

Tcostant said...

This is fun. No sleep for me mext week with late games. Another nice win!

John C. said...

Since leaving DC on July 22, the Braves are a really impressive 13-4. During that run, they have … fallen one additional game behind the Nationals, who despite having to playing 19 games in 19 days (part of their string of 35 games in 34 days), have done 15-4.

15-4!

No wonder Braves fans are grinding their teeth.

A DC Wonk said...

Swami, I had doubts. My daughter made fun of me, "there's plenty of time", and after the fifth inning gave me a big "told you so."

She has no idea how special this team is!

Eagle, you are so right: T-E-A-M

peric said...

They're on a roll Swami. Just like FP has described from his Oakland A's.

They need to keep it up for this road trip and into September if they can. Then Rizzo will bring up reinforcements for the relievers and at least 3 starting pitchers. Plus I expect we'll see Brown, Rivero, and Rendon before he gets sent to the Arizona Fall League. I suppose they might send Rivero as well.

Tcostant said...

Theo I like Jackson, let's just keep him at sea level!

ehay2k said...

We are in a 101 win pace, and that is the source of pure joy! (Philthies will be lucky to win 80. Enjoy the next few years of mediocrity Colbert!)

Barves get the Dodgers soon, so their winning ways will end.

After the bombs we hit in Houston (how is a 425 foot drive to CF - Werth's - not a HR?), why won't we send balls into McCovey cove all night in SF? But first, let's get a solid outing from Det and a Statement Sweep of the Douc.., er, D-Backs.

GYFNG!

peric said...

If I were Johnson, Jackson would watch the playoffs sitting next to Henry Rodriguez.

You'll need 4 starters. I'm not sure I would go with Lannan over Jackson. The playoff roster and who is on it will be interesting to see.

BTW, Natslady, Marquis just pitched a nine inning shutout for the Padres. He's 6-6 not that different from Jackson I guess?

peric said...

I don't think we'll see Werth in CF again. Its Harper, Bernadina or Brown (when he gets recalled) from here on out I 'm betting.

Tcostant said...

I do not thin you'll see Rendon this year

ehay2k said...

Looking at Davey's presser - what happened to his head? Looks like he cut it? Bat in tunnel? Razor in Cap?

baseballswami said...

I feel that this Nats team presses the issue all the time in every way. Always taking the extra base, alert, on their toes. Even in innings where they don 't score, they just seem to wear down the other team's pitching and defense. Then they start making mistakes, which the nats capitalize on. They have a very energetic vibe that has to be tiring. They are relentless, as someone said earlier.

peric said...

The Braves are better than the Dodgers. The Braves are probably the 2nd best team in the NL after the Nats ... not Cincinnati w/out Votto. Winning the division is not going to be easy ...

Theophilus T. S. said...

Other than between the play-in game and the NLDS, there are days off. And the more games they win the more rest between series. If they can get by with three starters on normal rest they should do it. Another night or two like this and Jackson sits.

nats guy said...

Peric,

Don't get so worked up about Rivero. He could make you look as silly as your issues with Bynum, Antonelli, and JD Martin. The Phillies didn't give him away because of his hitting. He is a terrible fielder and they couldn't figure out where to hide him in the field. No DH in the NL.

Theophilus T. S. said...

Rivero should be showcased in the AZ Fall League as trade bait. He has no future in Washington.

Theophilus T. S. said...

If Rivero had a future, Phillies would have kept him because they needed to groom a successor to Polanco. (And they knew before this year Polanco was headed downhill.) Now they're stuck w/ a career scrubini.

Swift Eagle said...

Haha..A New Plan of Attack from the Legion of Doom!

Since the big league team is red hot, they've decided to start bashing the guys in the minors!

Pretty bad that you guys have to Google Minor League stats to find something to b**tch about...

peric said...

Don't get so worked up about Rivero. He could make you look as silly as your issues with Bynum, Antonelli, and JD Martin. The Phillies didn't give him away because of his hitting. He is a terrible fielder and they couldn't figure out where to hide him in the field. No DH in the NL.

I think I said Seth Bynum should get his cup of coffee. Lots of folks here were pretty excited about Josh Wilkie from GWU. What about you?

Actually it was more about his hitting. That's where he needed the improvement Beasley seems to think he is doing pretty well. He can play shortstop, he has good hands the arm all the requisite tools, just the bat wasn't there. His fielding has improved significantly from when he was with Cleveland.

Hopefully, he'll get them something in a trade but the only way that happens is if they showcase him at the major league level. And the Nats do need prospects the cupboard is emptying out again.

They are going to call him up on September 1st. Hope it isn't too disappointing to you.

Byron Kerr on Rivero

Phuture Phillies on Rivero

368 AB/ 428 PA .308/.358/.795 .354 wOBA. 24 2B/8 HR ...

Drew said...

I like the minor league stats, but I'm not looking to bite anyone in the asterisk.

Fun stat of the day: Anthony Rendon has three triples at Potomac -- in seven games.

I still don't know where he's going to play, but he is going to mash.

ehay2k said...

OK, I figured out the caption for this post's photo: Doing his best James T. Kirk in "The Wrath of Khan", Morse is yelling "COLE!!!!"

peric said...

If they can get by with three starters on normal rest they should do it.

Go with Gio, JZimm, and Detwiler? Rizzo is all about having insurance. EJax will be there unless he completely implodes like Henry. They'll look at Ryan Perry for sure ... plus Lannan ... and yes Nats guy Maya will be there in September as well. Maya is definitely trade bait with only 2 million left on his contract.

Ghost Of Steve M. said...

A signature win by the Kardiac Kids!

ehay2k said...

Or maybe "TORRE!!!!"

ehay2k said...

Peric, do you really think Rizzo will showcase Maya as trade bait during a pennant race? Seems unlikely. That is the Nats of years past.

peric said...

I still don't know where he's going to play, but he is going to mash.

He's on the 40-man. When the minor league season end they bring him up. Get him ready for the Arizona Fall League. Next season he likely makes the majors barring injury. That's when the great debate will begin: moving Zim to first base and Rendon to third base.

Davey is going to want to look at both guys now to evaluate them together. So, I do suspect Rendon might see playing time in September.

Ghost Of Steve M. said...

Jason Marquis killed the Pirates coming close to a complete game no-hitter giving up only 2 hits with the shutout.

peric said...

Peric, do you really think Rizzo will showcase Maya as trade bait during a pennant race? Seems unlikely. That is the Nats of years past.

yeah, with the Braves breathing down their neck ... Lannan is also trade bait and we know he is going to get starts in place of Stras but when does Stras get shutdown? It might be after the minor league season ends? Rivero is trade bait.

It'll be interesting as Ladson's interview with Davey today attests: Davey is all about the future and leaving the best possible roster when he retires. Davey will be thinking along these lines you can bet on it.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

I was sure the caption was TORRE but someone took that.

Morse now on what I still call a 20 game hitting streak. He and JRo need to go whine to Torre like Cole did.

Gonat said...

Peric, do you really believe the stuff you write? Showcasing Maya? No way. He may certainly get a September call-up and sit and wait.

This is a fight to the finish. Any callups will play on merit and need.

Swift Eagle said...

The Nats have scored 2 or fewer runs in 7 of EJax starts...The team is 9-6 when they give him 3 or more runs...Not sure you can ask for more than that from a #4 starter

With his playoff experience, he would have to really tank to be replaced...Doubt it

Swift Eagle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
peric said...

Showcasing Maya? No way.

Again, it depends on where they are ... where Atlanta is. Think about it. They now only need to win 30 games to reach 100 wins. That's a record of 30 and 20.

Davey is going to want to rest some folks in the bullpen. He sounded pretty concerned about Clippard and Storen. It seems almost a foregone conclusion that they will use Christian Garcia he would be another Mattheus type of pitcher. They could probably use him.

Maya would be a mop-up guy I guess ... but yeah this may be the last chance to get some value for Maya.

If the race is close right to the end it will be reflected in who gets called up and who plays. If it is close I suspect they will play Brown, Rendon, and Garcia.

When Stras is shutdown I expect at least one start will go to Ryan Perry. Think about it, both he and Rivero have no options remaining. Perry appears to have earned a shot at starting to show what he can do. He's never started in the minors or majors before this year. He is still young. He may have more value in a trade than Lannan. But both pitchers will have to be showcased IMO.

As far as the next tier: Maya and Rivero we'll have to see ... but you're right it seems unlikely at this point. I suppose they could send Rivero to the AFL but without options what do they do with him? What do they do with Maya?

However, Maya they can keep one more year as major league depth in AAA. The problem with that is Maya is now over 30. Not even close to prospect age. They have to give him some hope or they might lose him next season. So, I can see Maya coming in for middle relief for a appearance or two.

So, I'll be interested in seeing how Davey handles it.

Drew said...

Speaking of pitching depth, Zach Duke is putting together a nice season in Syracuse. He threw nine shutout innings Friday. He's 13-5 with an ERA just over 3.50.

Rosenbaum's continued struggles are disappointing, but there's still a rainy-day fund of pitching down on the farm.

It will be good to have Solis back in the fold.

peric said...

Speaking of pitching depth, Zach Duke is putting together a nice season in Syracuse. He threw nine shutout innings Friday. He's 13-5 with an ERA just over 3.50.

He's probably gone after this season ... but he probably has been the best pitcher in AAA over the entire season. But he's not on the 40-man. He was unfortunately always just additional depth after Lannan and Maya. Another former Pirates ace like Tom Gorzelanny. Both left handers.

i suspect Rosenbaum has been hiding an injury. That seems to be the only plausible explanation. Hopefully, the Nats will get to the bottom of things before he damages his arm as Cole Kimball did when he hid that injury that began in spring training.

Gonat said...

If a player isn't on the 40 man, it will be difficult to add them.

Zach Duke and Christian Garcia are not on the 40 man.

Not sure it makes sense to call up Rendon who is on the 40 man.

Lannan, Perry and Maya are on the 40 man as is Rivero and Eury Perez and Leon and Solano and Corey Brown.

A 3rd catcher always makes sense in September. I think it will be Lannan and Corey Brown and Leon and Solano and Eury Perez and Perry and Maya as callups plus bringing back Wang and HenRod and DeRosa.

Not sure about Rivero or Rendon.

That would be a total of 35 men.

Scott Margenau said...

Settle down boys! Peric...I needed bookmarks to read your last post :-)

Scott Margenau said...

How would u really order starters at this point? Current order aside. Reality says:

- jzim
--Stras
- Gio
- det
-EJ

Theophilus T. S. said...

Nats should find a way to cobble Maya and Jackson together once September rolls around. Maya could work the first three innings -- after which he always folds up. Jackson could throw three simulated innings in the BP and come in in the fourth when he's finally ready to pitch.

natsfan1a said...

Nice comeback and win, and I watched the whole thing (yawn). Well, I may have dozed off a time or two in the late innings (yawn). Will be out and about for today's game, but recording it to watch later.

baseballswami said...

Ok, so it wasn't a dream.

m20832 said...

Reality is Suhwwweeeettttt!!! 71-43 and more to come!

GYFNG!!!

zregime said...

Oh boy do I love this team!

Possibe soundtrack to the final out last night:

(Crack)

Werth: Mine.

Harper: (Silence)

Werth: Mine.

Harper: (Silence)

Harper: I got this!

(Thwop)

Wewrth (running back in): Are you hard of hearing, Meat?

Harper (running back in): I...I...

Werth (playfully pushing him): No worries, rook. Let's grab a burger.

GYFNG!

Kevin Rusch said...

"BTW, Natslady, Marquis just pitched a nine inning shutout for the Padres. He's 6-6 not that different from Jackson I guess? "

It depends - I think Jackson would have a somewhat better record if he were playing in the most extreme pitcher's park in baseball.

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