Monday, September 3, 2012

Game 134: Cubs at Nats

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Cubs are in town for this Labor Day matinee at Nationals Park.
Happy Labor Day, everyone. It's a day off for most, and the unofficial final day of summer for many, but it's been a busy morning here at Nationals Park. If you missed any of the earlier news, be sure to read these articles on Stephen Strasburg meeting with Mike Rizzo and Davey Johnson about his shutdown, Sean Burnett dealing with elbow issues again and the Nationals promoting Zach Duke and Christian Garcia from Class AAA Syracuse.

As for today's game, Ross Detwiler gets the start against a Cubs team is serious rebuilding mode. Check out some of the names in Dale Sveum's lineup (aside from old pal Alfonso Soriano, of course). Ex-Notre Dame receiver Jeff Samardzija is on the mound for Chicago.

Plenty of updates to come, so please check back...

CHICAGO CUBS at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 1:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), XM 183
Weather: Cloudy, 82 degrees, Wind 9 mph RF to LF
NATIONALS (81-52)
RF Jayson Werth
CF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche
LF Michael Morse
SS Ian Desmond
2B Danny Espinosa
C Kurt Suzuki
LHP Ross Detwiler

CUBS (51-82)
CF Joe Mather
2B Darwin Barney
1B Anthony Rizzo
LF Alfonso Soriano
SS Starlin Castro
C Welington Castillo
3B Josh Vitters
RF Dave Sappelt
RHP Jeff Samardzija

UMPIRES
HP Bill Miller
1B Clint Fagan
2B Mike Estabrook
3B Jerry Layne (cc)

1:07 p.m. -- And we're underway. Ross Detwiler starts Joe Mather off with a fastball for strike one.

1:10 p.m. -- And 10 pitches (eight strikes) later, Detwiler is through a 1-2-3 top of the first. Good stuff from the lefty to get this one started.

1:26 p.m. -- After Jeff Samardzija retired the Nats on six pitches in the bottom of the first, Detwiler got himself into some trouble in the top of the second. Starlin Castro roped a one-out double to right to put himself in scoring position. Detwiler, though, came up big to strike out Welington Castillo and then (after issuing a two-out walk to Josh Vitters) got Dave Sappelt to ground out to kill the potential rally. Still scoreless as we move to the bottom of the second.

1:34 p.m. -- Looks like Adam LaRoche's oft-streaky bat is getting hot again. He just demolished a pitch into the second deck down the right-field line to open the bottom of the second, his team-leading 25th homer of the season and his second in three days. LaRoche gives the Nats a 1-0 lead.

1:46 p.m. -- Does any second baseman in the majors charge to his right and throw across his body better than Danny Espinosa? Seriously, he makes that play look so easy, as he just did to get Darwin Barney to end the top of the third. And there's nothing easy about that play. Still 1-0 heading to the bottom of the third.

2:08 p.m. -- Um, Roger Bernadina just pinch-hit for Michael Morse to lead off the bottom of the fourth. I have no idea what prompted that, unless Morse somehow hurt himself watching Bryce Harper catch a flyball to end the top of the inning. Stay tuned...

2:15 p.m. -- No news yet on Morse. Meanwhile, Ian Desmond got caught straying too far off first base by the heretofore unknown Welington "That's Only One L, Not Two" Castillo and was picked off. Made all the more frustrating when Danny Espinosa followed with a base hit to center. So it's still 1-0 through four as Bernadina takes over in left field.

2:38 p.m. -- We've got a Morse update at last: He came out of today's game with right thumb soreness, according to the Nationals. This is something he's dealt with before, so perhaps it's not all that serious.

2:40 p.m. -- Meanwhile, Ross Detwiler has completed six scoreless innings on 85 pitches. He's had to pitch out of the stretch much of the afternoon, but he's gotten some big outs when needed, including a 6-4-3 double play just now to end the top of the sixth. So it remains a 1-0 lead for the Nats.

3:00 p.m. -- Another big double play induced by Detwiler to end the seventh. He's at 93 pitches and still has the shutout intact. Chad Tracy, however, will hit for Detwiler in the bottom of the seventh, so the lefty's day is done. His final line: 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 3 K. He lowered his ERA to 3.15.

3:10 p.m. -- Here's Drew Storen for the top of the eighth, the Nats still clinging to a 1-0 lead. Remember: Sean Burnett is not available (and probably won't be for several days) due to a lingering elbow issue.

3:16 p.m. -- And Storen retires the side on nine pitches, including a devastating slider to strike out Brett Jackson. We head to the bottom of the eighth, the Nats still up 1-0 and Tyler Clippard limbering up in the pen.

3:24 p.m. -- And there's the insurance run the Nats have been seeking all afternoon. Harper leads off the bottom of the eighth with a single to right, then comes all the way around to score on Zimmerman's double into the left-field corner. It's 2-0 now.

3:32 p.m. -- OK, onto the ninth. Here's Tyler Clippard in search of his 30th save (not to mention the Nats' 82nd win of the season).

3:49 p.m. -- Not over yet. Clippard gives up a two-out RBI single to Castillo, cutting the lead to 2-1.

3:52 p.m. -- Now it's over. Congrats, D.C.: You've officially got yourselves a winning ballclub for the first time in 43 years.

121 comments:

djinFl. said...

There you go NJ. Just the way you like a first inning to go.

Gonat said...

Got to love that Top 1st!

Eugene in Oregon said...

Morning coffee and a baseball game; what could be finer?

Keep the pressure on, Nats; don't let up a bit.

Steady Eddie said...

Looks like as busy a morning for you as anyone, Mark -- I wondered when you were going to have time to post a game thread!

Mark, I want to give you a note of thanks for so tirelessly keeping us up on so many important developments during the most exciting time for Washington baseball in probably living memory, especially when you've got a growing young 'un at home. It certainly is for me, and I became a Senators fan in 1963!

GYFNG!

NatsJack in Florida said...

yep dj.....10-12 pitches per inning is perfect.

Gonat said...

Ross barely had time to catch his breath. 6 pitch inning by Cubs starter (can't spell his name)

Another_Sam said...

Steady Eddie -- ditto here. I've been following the local team since the '50s. This is the most exciting season I can recall.

Gonat said...

Pretty bad when a starter gets through an inning throwing less pitches than his warmup. Samardzija with only 6 pitches thrown in the 1st to retire the Nats 1-2-3

peric said...

Samardzija with only 6 pitches thrown in the 1st to retire the Nats 1-2-3

This guy is really good ... be lucky to get many hits off him if he is anything at all like he was earlier.

Gonat said...

Ross wasn't as sharp there in the 2nd after getting Soriano out.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Det was fine in first. Second ok but what is walking an ,085 hitter on 4 pitches. Please stay focused.

Eugene in Oregon said...

Let's try to make him throw a few more pitches this inning, okay?

Swift Eagle said...

Deja Vu...

Swift Eagle said...

How about just hitting the 8th pitch out?

Eugene in Oregon said...

Nice, but a second-pitch HR doesn't build up the pitch count...he wrote with a snark.

Gonat said...

Peric, in Samardzija's last 4 games + 1 inning he has given up 7 HRs.

peric said...

Nice Wrigley field redux for LaRoche!

peric said...

Peric, in Samardzija's last 4 games + 1 inning he has given up 7 HRs.

Maybe they burned out his arm a bit ... they did push him pretty hard innings and pitch count wise early on. But now he's pitching against a first place best record team with a 98+ mph heater? I fear he'll bring out his best.

peric said...

Stay hot Danny Espinosa!

Steady Eddie said...

Very nice AB by Danny -- not trying to hit everything out, he went down and got that low fastball and got the solid line single out of it he could.

Swift Eagle said...

20 pitches, and 2 throws to first this inning...is that better? Lol...

Gonat said...

Peric, he had a dead arm in June but bounced back nicely and recently almost all RBIs have come from HRs.

Gonat said...

24 pitches that inning for Samardzija

Steady Eddie said...

LaRoche is a very streaky hitter and seems to have picked a perfect time to start heating up again, especially joined by Werth, Harper, and Espi.

I think we're ready for the home stretch, and hopefully can sustain it through October.

Steady Eddie said...

Nice basket catch by Werth there, looked like he was going to run it in for 6 (especially against former tight end Samardzjia.

Gonat said...

Werth caught that in the palm of his glove. Again, hate to see the Nats burned by a pitcher because the OFs play so shallow.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

How many people want Classic plush in their tree house.

Werth looked like Samaria on that hit.

Gonat said...

Eddie - Wide Receiver I think.

Swift Eagle said...

Gonat, I think they play shallow v. the pitchers to prevent the cheap flairs, especially to the opp. field...It's a calculated risk, but I'm sure they use the hitting charts to make those decisions...

Steady Eddie said...

Eh, Gonat, I'm a Michigan man, all those ND guys look the same to me.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

37 Pitches through 3. Now more runs.

Gonat said...

Swift, you are correct but just like Cliff Lee burned them last week it is probably better to play it more conservative in my opinion.

Gonat said...

Only a single Jayson? LOL

djinFl. said...

Gonat, nobody gets on the highlite reel catching a ball hit right to them. All those shots are of guys racing back to catch it over their shoulder. Guess we can blame it on Willie Mays

Gonat said...

Vitters has a .085 BA for a reason.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Boys lets get some run.

Gonat said...

djinFL, yah, I am a "slow & steady wins the race type of guy".

djinFl. said...

Gonat, I agree. One of the reasons I quit watching the NBA. It is only about creating highlites.

Gonat said...

Desmond got Pudge'd there.

Swift Eagle said...

Guess this umpiring crew has a different opinion of the neighborhood play, b/c they still haven't tagged Ian...

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Morse news?

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Lead off walks are bad. in front of the pitcher even worse. Come play smart.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Walk the #8 hitter to lead off an inning. Never, ever ends well.Never.

Gonat said...

Swift, yep, except Castillo had already shown his snap throw earlier in the game behind Werth so the Nats runners should have been aware of taking their secondary lead.

Swift Eagle said...

Kurt gave a look to the Cubs dugout there..I don't think he liked the bat-toss/obstruction thing by the pitcher...

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

BareBack I have watch baseball almost as long as you. Batting number 8 batter in the No as a leadoff hitter has been a recipe for disaster.

Gonat said...

What a dumb play to tag there even though he was safe.

Swift Eagle said...

You're right Gonat, Ian needed to be more careful, and with his hamstring he's not going anywhere...In his defense, he may have thought there was a chance that was going to be a wild pitch...

NatsJack in Florida said...

Bernie did not position himself well for that throw to third.

Gonat said...

Manassas Nats' Fan said...
BareBack I have watch baseball almost as long as you. Batting number 8 batter in the No as a leadoff hitter has been a recipe for disaster.

September 03, 2012 2:23 PM
________________________________

Is BareBack a new nickname for NatsJack?

Joe Seamhead said...

Happy ending this time,Jack, but the stats for a lead off walk scoring is staggering.

Eugene in Oregon said...

Okay, I went to Wrigley in late June and Mr. Samardzija was pitching against the Mets. He looked pretty good through four, having given up one run. In the fifth, he gave up eight. Can we have a repeat, please?

NatsJack in Florida said...

So now I guess I can eliminate "never" to "almost never".

Scott Margenau said...

Morse ???!

NatsJack in Florida said...

Gonat..... I think he has a wierd auto correct.

Joe Seamhead said...

Werth's hurt.

Swift Eagle said...

Morse out, Werth looks like he's hurt...Eury better be ready

Eugene in Oregon said...

Guess not.

Scott Margenau said...

Werth looked like he pulled something.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

I have a terrible spell check it corrects things when I don't ask

Scott Margenau said...

Is it just me or does ALR seem to make "poses" all the time? Lol

Gonat said...

NatsJack, that could be a new Seminole nickname for you Chief BareBack.

Swift Eagle said...

Ross better get these sinking fastballs down a little, or it could be trouble...

Gonat said...

Pitchers best friend. Doubleplay

Swift Eagle said...

Tailor-made off a sinker way down and in...Very nice pitch there from Ross

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

There is bad managing. thanks. Soriano should have been running

NatsJack in Florida said...

Gonat.....I'm a Florida Gator guy.

Medlen has given up 3 hits and no runs on 50 pitches through 5 innings.

Scott Margenau said...

Swift! Knock on wood quickly!!

Scott Margenau said...

How bout a steal Davey.

Swift Eagle said...

Lol, It's all good Scott.

This guy is really mixing up his pitches...I don't think he's doubled up on anything today...

Swift Eagle said...

Wow that's pretty when it works!

Scott Margenau said...

Ok. Bourbon time.

Scott Margenau said...

See !!! He poses! (ALR)

NatsJack in Florida said...

Wow...Christian Garcia warming up.

Gonat said...

NatsJack, I was just thinking of an Indian tribe in Florida, sorry for any reference to Bobby Bowden's old team. LOL

NatsJack in Florida said...

Love me some double play stuff!

Swift Eagle said...

Plays like that more than make up for the throwing issues...Great pitch, great pick, great turn...

Gonat said...

Pitcher's 2nd best friend: the 2nd doubleplay of the game.

Eugene in Oregon said...

NatsJack, Get him (Christian Garcia) in quickly; don't let him think too much about having been called up.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Cubs are not real good but in position with a Nats mistake they could win.

Gonat said...

This will be Samardjia's last inning if he makes it through the 7th.

Swift Eagle said...

Close pitch, but that was ball 4 to Tracy per Pitch F/X...

Gonat said...

Samardjia's high pitch count this year was 113. Approaching that now.

Swift Eagle said...

He sure looks good to me...He's had 3 or 4 different pitches working great today. Impressive

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Maloox time.

Swift Eagle said...

Can O Corn....Lol

Eugene in Oregon said...

Call me old fashioned, but could we get one or two more runs here?

Gonat said...

Manassas, nice of Drew on that 1st batter to give us a Kardiac Kids moment as Bryce made a great catch.

If you are the outfield wall, Bryce Harper just left an impression on you too!

Gonat said...

There's the add-on run!

Joe Seamhead said...

Dat boy's got wheels!

Eugene in Oregon said...

Exactly.

Swift Eagle said...

There's the Prudential Insurance Run of the game...Not much of jump from Soriano, seen that before...

Gonat said...

Not sure why the 3rd baseman was just about playing in the 5.5 hole. LOL

Swift Eagle said...

Probably b/c Ryan hasn't pulled a ball like that in a long time, his spray chart probably looks like LaRoche's....

Swift Eagle said...

Davey mad b/c they announced Moore before the Cubs made the pitching change, I think...Maybe he was trying to bluff

Eugene in Oregon said...

Swift: Say what you will about Mr. Soriano's defense, but he made that one season in Washington exciting (and I mean that positively) when not much else was happening.

Swift Eagle said...

Very true Eugene! I remember many days sitting in RFK in 2006 when he was the only thing worth watching...

Gonat said...

Swift, you are correct once again.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Derek.....that's how it works. You don't make the pitching change until the hitter is anounced. I don't think it was that.

Probably more about the Cubs sending 2 guys out to center field to start the inning.

Swift Eagle said...

Oh OK Jack, something certainly had Davey annoyed...

Gonat said...

http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20120903&content_id=37812098&vkey=news_mlb&c_id=mlb

Tough decisions never come easy. Hah.

Gonat said...

Medlen gives up a run, just not an earned run.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Maloox administered. Rizzo he was ahead of now Soriano

NatsJack in Florida said...

Just getting ready to post that, Gonat.

I do think the boy is for real. This will be 18-0 in games started.

Gonat said...

Another heart thumper.

Gonat said...

Soriano missed that by an inch.

Gonat said...

It is a game of inches.

NatsJack in Florida said...

That was 1/4 inch from going out (Soriano).

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Gonat he missed by even lrss

Gonat said...

Milimeters!

Gonat said...

That's why I hate defensive indifference.

Swift Eagle said...

Another runner allowed to take 2nd scores...

Gonat said...

Can't do anything easy.......

Joe Seamhead said...

Clippard is trying to kill me!
30 games over .500. Magic # = 22!
GYFNG!!!

Swift Eagle said...

Another gem by Ross, the bullpen, and the defense...A proven winning formula for about 100 years..

Gonat said...

Did you see Davey tapping his heart. Kardiac Kids!

Eugene in Oregon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Eugene in Oregon said...

Thirty saves. How many heart-stopping moments? GYFNG!

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Rarely easy.

when up by 2 and runner on first why not throw down in fade runner slides by.

ehay2k said...

We have a WINNER!!!!

Congrats to all the long-suffering baseball fans in D.C. !

natsfan1a said...

Now, *that* was fun. Happy trains home are so much better. Dang, do I love watching Harper run the bases. That boy just outran his helmet today.

Also so happy for clinching the first winning season in early September. Can't wait to see how the rest of the season plays out.

btw, my husband and I are now 7-2 at in-person games (but with baseball buddies I'm 0-2 with a rainout). Good news is that I talked him into picking up another game with me, later this month. Come on, happy train! :-)

Was so excited that I forgot about Morse being taken out. Wondered at the time whether it might be his hand. Hope he's okay.

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