Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Game 14: Nats at Marlins

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Nats look to make it two in a row tonight at Marlins Park.
MIAMI -- Dan Haren was better in his second start with the Nationals than he was in his first, though he still was far from what you would typically describe as "good." The right-hander gave up 10 hits in five innings against the White Sox, emerging with the win only because his teammates delivered at the plate.

Tonight, Haren gets an opportunity to again improve on his previous start. He'll have the advantage of facing a bad Marlins lineup that's still without slugger Giancarlo Stanton (shoulder), and he'll be pitching in a big ballpark that doesn't easily surrender homers. Whether that translates into a quality start remains to be seen.

Davey Johnson has a very different looking lineup card tonight. Bryce Harper and Denard Span are being given the night off, and Danny Espinosa remins out with a bruised right hand. Harper, if you haven't been paying attention, is 0-for-13 since homering against the Braves on Friday and had some really ugly swings last night. So Jayson Werth will lead off, Roger Bernadina will play center field and Tyler Moore will get a second straight start, this time in left field.

[UPDATE AT 5:30 P.M. -- Turns out both Harper and Span are dealing with flu-like symptoms. They're scheduled to see a doctor at 6 p.m. But with those two and Espinosa out, Davey Johnson is going with a 2-man bench tonight: Chad Tracy and Jhonatan Solano. He went around asking if any relievers could play the outfield in an emergency. The consensus was that Craig Stammen would be the best choice.]

Updates to come...

WASHINGTON NATIONALS at MIAMI MARLINS
Where: Marlins Park
Gametime: 7:10 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN2, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), XM 187
Weather: Indoors
NATIONALS (8-5)
RF Jayson Werth
CF Roger Bernadina
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche
SS Ian Desmond
LF Tyler Moore
2B Steve Lombardozzi
C Kurt Suzuki
RHP Dan Haren

MARLINS (2-11)
RF Chris Coghlan
LF Juan Pierre
3B Placido Polanco
1B Greg Dobbs
CF Justin Ruggiano
C Rob Brantly
SS Adeiny Hechavarria
2B Donovan Solano
RHP Alex Sanabia

UMPIRES
HP Jerry Layne (cc)
1B Greg Gibson
2B Mike Estabrook
3B Alan Porter

5:30 p.m. -- Turns out both Harper and Span are dealing with flu-like symptoms. They're scheduled to see a doctor at 6 p.m. But with those two and Espinosa out, Davey Johnson is going with a 2-man bench tonight: Chad Tracy and Jhonatan Solano. He went around asking if any relievers could play the outfield in an emergency. The consensus was that Craig Stammen would be the best choice.

7:11 p.m. -- And we are underway with a ball from Alex Sanabia to leadoff-man-for-the-day Jayson Werth.

7:19 p.m. -- A couple of baserunners for the Nats in the top of the first, with Werth delivering a leadoff single to right and Ryan Zimmerman drawing a two-out walk. But nothing came of it, mostly because Roger Bernadina hit into a 4-6-3 double play. Not entirely Bernadina's fault; he scorched a hard grounder that nearly knocked Donovan Solano (aka "The Shallot") off his feet, but Solano recovered nicely to turn the double play.

7:27 p.m. -- Solid start to Dan Haren's night. He got through the bottom of the first on 16 pitches, allowing a one-out single to Juan Pierre but nothing else. All three outs came on flyballs, which reminds me to mention this: Haren's biggest issue since joining the Nats (including spring training) has been his penchant for giving up home runs. Well, do you know how many homers the Marlins have hit as a team so far this season? Two. Yes, two. Between that fact and the size of this ballpark, this certainly feels like a better matchup for Haren than his previous two. Scoreless through one.

7:37 p.m. -- Ian Desmond delivers his seventh double of the season, tops in MLB, but it's wasted. The big problem in the bottom of the second was Tyler Moore, who followed that leadoff double by striking out on a pitch well out of the zone. That's not a professional at-bat with nobody out and a man on second.

7:44 p.m. -- Good sign from Haren so far tonight: He's keeping the ball down in the zone, a must given his lack of velocity. He retired the side in the bottom of the second, on a strikeout and two groundballs. So he's through two scoreless on 29 pitches (19 strikes).

8:05 p.m. -- More good stuff from Haren in the third as he retires the side again on a strikeout and two groundballs. He continues to keep the ball down in the zone, and he's working very quickly. Only 40 total pitches (26 strikes) through three scoreless for the right-hander. The Nats, meanwhile, have put six men on base against Sanabia but have yet to score.

8:26 p.m. -- And everything falls apart in the bottom of the fourth. It began with something we've seen to many times recently: a Zimmerman throwing error on a routine play. Zim's throw wasn't horrible, but it was enough to pull LaRoche off the bag and allow Polanco to reach safely. That's Zimmerman's fourth error of the season, his third in five games. And it was costly, because the Marlins then proceeded to get a pair of singles and ultimately a three-run homer by Adeiny Hechavarria to open up a 4-0 lead. All four runs are unearned, but Haren has to take some responsibility, too. Especially for the home run pitch: an 85-mph splitter right down the heart of the plate. The Nats have some work to do now, down four runs heading to the fifth.

8:34 p.m. -- Just when it looked like Roger Bernadina had finally recorded his first hit of the season ... he gets called out by plate ump Jerry Layne for running inside the baseline and interfering with Sanabia's throw to first base. On replay, it definitely looked like the right call. Roger was running on the grass, not even the dirt path in fair territory.

8:53 p.m. -- Yikes, this one really got ugly in a hurry. Haren gave up three more hits in the fifth, then picked the absolute worst possible time to issue his first walk of the season: with the bases loaded. That was all Davey could bear to watch. He strolled to the mound and took the ball from his veteran starter, who in three starts this year has yet to make it to the sixth inning. Not what they paid him $13 million to do. Not at all. Craig Stammen entered in relief and exacerbated the problem by surrendering a two-run double to Justin Ruggiano. So it's now 7-0 Marlins through five innings. Not pretty. Not pretty at all.

9:04 p.m. -- Well, maybe it's not over quite yet. The Nats managed to finally score off Sanabia in the sixth, getting three doubles from LaRoche, Moore and Lombardozzi to trim the lead to 7-2. They're running out of time, but they haven't completely thrown in the towel quite yet.

9:20 p.m. -- Doesn't look like a major rally is in the works. The Nats went down quietly in the seventh, with Bernadina striking out to fall to 0-for-8 for the season. They're down to their last six outs, and Henry Rodriguez is taking the mound for the bottom of the seventh, still trailing 7-2.

9:32 p.m. -- Make it 8-2 as Henry Rodriguez gives up a run in the seventh, that run scoring in large part because H-Rod essentially let Juan Pierre steal both second and third bases.

9:39 p.m. -- They're playing "Sweet Caroline" here in the eighth inning in honor of Boston. It appears this is happening across MLB tonight. Cool tribute.

9:46 p.m. -- We go to the ninth, Nats down 6.

9:55 p.m. -- It's over. The Nats lose, 8-2. It's their fourth loss in five games.

173 comments:

Unknown said...

I'm surprised Davy didn't go with Lombo at lead-off.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Sanabia tougher on left handers than right handers. Go figure?

SonnyG10 said...

I'm glad to see Tyler Moore getting another start. Hope he goes on a hitting streak to earn some more play time.

baseballswami said...

I would have thought Lombo at lead off also, but he is showing surprising power this season and also makes contact so well that he is good at moving runners over. This should be interesting with the line up. I think it's fun to have the line up shaken up. Also -- you can't get through the season if your bench players are covered in rust. We usually don't get a big let down with them, either. Bernie, Lombo , Moore can be good offensively and defensively. Love to see one of them hit the ugly sculpture tonight. Time for Haren to get it together.

Section 222 said...

For the first time this year, we can have lineup second guessing. Woo hoo!

A DC Wonk said...

This start is tailor made for Haren. Hope he can take advantage of it.

Tcostant said...

For the record I second guessed when Davey just dropped Tracy in ALR lineup spot when he missed those few games vs. the Reds.

I also think Lombo should at the top of the lineup.

realdealnats said...

Do we know what was ailing Zimm as he ran the bases last night? Was it a cramp? Or a pulled hammy?

Laddie Blah Blah said...

Agree Lombo should lead off, or bat 2nd. He is swinging a more potent bat than Bernie right now.

I am also glad to see TyMo back in the lineup, but not in LF. That OF loses a lot on defense without Harper in LF and Span in CF. I hope it doesn't come back to bite Davey and the Nats. That's a BIG OF to cover, and Span made it look easy. With Haren pitching, they might see a lot of action out there, tonight.

Laddie Blah Blah said...

"Was it a cramp? Or a pulled hammy?"

Hamstring cramp, according to WaPo.

biggoose said...

Lombo should be leading off and playing everyday. ALSO, HE LED OUR TEAM IN b.a. with runners in scoring position last year. I hope Danny's hand takes a while to heal properly.

Rabbit34 said...

A suitable lineup for Haren.

realdealnats said...

Laddie--Agreed on lots of ground to cover for TyMo. I've been calling for TyMo and Lombo and Shark to play, but all at once behind Haren makes this a ball game and not a gimme. Should be fun to watch. Hopefully the goon squad can rack up some runs and help put it away early. I really hope Haren comes around to be the clutch and wily pitcher we need for a #5. Pitches #4, but #5 in my book.

baseballswami said...

Not hating on Danny, but what I see is that Lombo continues to improve while he stays mostly the same. You can't reach that famous ceiling if you don't take any steps.

realdealnats said...

Thanks Laddie.

realdealnats said...

Swammi--Lombo looks the best he's ever looked to me. Small sample but still.

A DC Wonk said...

Lombo looks the best he's ever looked to me.

He also looked like he gained 30 pounds since last year, and not one ounce of it in fat.

realdealnats said...

Wonk--
Yeah, I think we all see it.

I predicted a break out year for Danny--a la Desi--right before his shoulder injury was announced. I'm not woofing if Danny takes all the time he needs to let that hand heal either. Playing both is a healthy way to go--a 2B version of Ramozuki. I'd like to see TyMo rotate more often at 1B with ALR--and I love Adam. Keeps things fresh. And hungry.

Candide said...

Harper being benched: I suppose the official reason is his 0-13 slump. But I wonder if Davey isn't also trying to tell him, "You should have learned in Little League that you don't make the first out of an inning at third base. Why don't you sit on the bench and think about that a little?"

A DC Wonk said...

NatsJack in Florida said...

Sanabia tougher on left handers than right handers. Go figure?

Huh. That is, indeed, weird.

Lifetime (only about 400 plate appearances) righties bat about .100 points better than lefties against him!

See http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/split.cgi?id=sanabal01&year=Career&t=p

A DC Wonk said...

Harper being benched: I suppose the official reason is his 0-13 slump. But I wonder if Davey isn't also trying to tell him, "You should have learned in Little League that you don't make the first out of an inning at third base. Why don't you sit on the bench and think about that a little?"

Good point. Actually, I'd speculate: both. As others have mentioned, he's 0-13 in part because his right shoulder is flying out. He needs to chill -- i.e., to stop playing at 120% and dial it down to 110% ;-)

(since 110% is probably the lowest you can get from that 20-year old! ;-) )

Section 222 said...

Maybe Davey just thinks it's better to get as many guys some rest vs. the Marlins as he can rather than vs. the Mets. He'd like to have his top guys rested and ready for the Cardinals and Reds coming up next week. Hence Span and Harp tonight, maybe Zim and Werth tomorrow, assuming a righty is pitching? That would leave Desi as the only regular who hasn't had a day off. With Espi hurt, he'll have to wait.

As for the lineup, if Harp is out, Davey wants Zim batting third, and ALR 4th. That means he wants a RH leadoff guy to maintain the L,R,L,R top of the order. He could use Lombo to lead off, but that would mean moving Werth down in the order to the 5-7 spot. I'd rather have him lead off.

This is just my effort to figure out how Davey is thinking. I really don't think it matters that much.

Laddie Blah Blah said...

"You can't reach that famous ceiling if you don't take any steps."

Especially if the steps you are taking are backwards. Danny has been regressing ever since his remarkable first half of 2011, when he hit 15 HRs before the All-Star break and was then odds-on favorite for ROY.

Last year his HR total, OBP, SLG, OPS and walks were all down from 2011, but his strikeouts were way up, leading the NL. He only hit about .220 left-handed, and about .247 overall.

Maybe that torn rotator cuff is giving him more problems than we realize, this year, since he has been hovering between .160 and .200 this season.

I really do not see a valid reason for not giving Lombo a legitimate shot at that position, all things considered. He is the guy who is taking steps in the right direction.

JD said...


Candide,

I don't buy that. You can't have your cake and eat it too. Everyone was excited last year when Harper often took extra bases with his hustle. Well, you have to take the good with the bad. Sometimes being aggressive gets you thrown out and you know what? it's not the end of the world.

JD said...


I don't agree with Lombo at leadoff. Not until he shows that he can get on base at a better than .312 OBP clip. I also don't think he needs the extra at bats to stay sharp and so do the others especially Bernie.

JD said...


I meant he does need regular at bats to stay sharp.

Candide said...

Oh, wow. Look at what the Yankees tweeted.

Class.

natsfan1a said...

That is classy.

Candide said...

JD said...You can't have your cake and eat it too. Everyone was excited last year when Harper often took extra bases with his hustle. Well, you have to take the good with the bad.

That wasn't bad; that was stupid. There was NO reason for him to try to take third with no outs, the Marlins' pitcher on the ropes, and sluggers coming up behind him.

I love Harper's hustle, but you have to play smart, not just hard.

JD said...


What's wrong with Werth leading off?

He sees a lot of pitches, is not afraid to hit with 2 strikes and he gets on base. He did pretty well in that role last year. no?

peric said...

He's not going with Lombo at lead-off because if you remove Span Werth leads off in the normal lineup ... ( unless Danny goes off and gets that rotator cuff repaired) ... and Tyler Moore eventually ends up in the 3 4 or 5 spot.

Just like I keep telling you ...

Candide said...

And then there's this, too.

NatsLady said...

Brought a tear to my eye, Candide.

peric said...

Werth RHB RF
Harper LHB CF
Moore RHB LF
LaRoche LHB 1B
Zimmerman RHB 3B
Espinosa/Lombardozzi S 2B
Desmond RHB SS
Suzuki / Ramos / Solano RHB C

JD said...


Candide,

In a classic sense you are right. But a big part of Harper's game is reckless aggression and sec 222 pointed out in great detail how many games he influenced positively last year with just such an all out style. It's how he plays the game and it works more often than not.

I am just amazed how quickly fans/posters turn on one of our players; just last week we were all gushing about Harper's greatness. All of a sudden he's a bum?

peric said...

At some point this season Rizzo will likely knuckle under and let Davey put in his lineup ...

peric said...

.. kind of like the one that won 98 games ...

realdealnats said...

Really cool what the Yankees did. Re: yesterday's tragedy, just like 9/11 it is uplifting to see how heroic and unselfish human beings are in dire times of tragedy. Everyone pulling together is where it's at.

baseballswami said...

I am good with Werth leading off. I also think it makes sense for Danny and Lombo to semi- platoon. Especially with Danny's shoulder. In the NL it just makes your team better if every starter gets regular breathers and every sub gets playing time. The Nats were at their best last season when all 25 guys were important .

peric said...

Nor can you look back to 1982 to an insane start and give it all back during the year.

BUT, if it continues then the Braves would be taking a page right of Davey's and Earl Weaver's book ... once you get a 20-30 game lead its almost impossible to run them down. Then you get to manage a team and prepare for the playoffs well in advance ... that's how its done.

The Nat's job is to not worry about what the Braves are doing until they meet them ... to string together wins, win or sweep series consistently. Maintain a close margin between they and the Braves.

JD said...


Peric,

Which lineup from last year are you referring to?

1) The one with Ankiel and DeRosa?
2) the one with Lombo leading off and playing left field? (that's what it was for most of the year).


The Nats are averaging 4.5 runs a game. The offense hasn't been a problem.

peric said...

I am just amazed how quickly fans/posters turn on one of our players; just last week we were all gushing about Harper's greatness. All of a sudden he's a bum?

He's going to make mistakes his natural position is catcher remember? As long as the mistakes are aggressive mistakes. His 'style' of play more than makes up for any of his baseball peccadilloes ... you'll never hear me complain about him ...

Candide said...

JD said...But a big part of Harper's game is reckless aggression and sec 222 pointed out in great detail how many games he influenced positively last year with just such an all out style. It's how he plays the game and it works more often than not.

There's aggression, smart aggression, and reckless aggression. That was not a smart play, given the situation. If it had been the bottom of the ninth with one out, or even two outs, and a tie game, the payoff might have been worth the risk.

But he took a risk of getting thrown out - and DID get thrown out - for what? To get an extra base that, the way the Nats were lighting up the Marlins' pitcher, would have ended up being meaningless, because he was going to likely score anyway - my cat could see that and she's an idiot. They could have been into Miami's bullpen in the first inning.

I am just amazed how quickly fans/posters turn on one of our players; just last week we were all gushing about Harper's greatness. All of a sudden he's a bum?

Who said he's a bum? I love him. If he never gets better than he is today, I'll consider myself blessed to have seen him play.

So imagine how I'll feel when he learns to harness his aggression, use it more intelligently.

Imagine Pete Rose with power.

JD said...


Peric,

Harper being a catcher is not even an issue. He's playing outfield defense at all star caliber. As you say he makes some 'aggressive' mistakes but at the same time he stretches doubles into triples, forces bad throws etc. I'll take it any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

peric said...

1) The one with Ankiel and DeRosa?
2) the one with Lombo leading off and playing left field? (that's what it was for most of the year).


You mean the ones with the weak offense? The one's where Zim was a hole in the 3 spot until the cortisone spot?

Or the one I listed which replaces Morse with Moore that went on to demolish the National League and maintain and increase the lead over those tenacious Braves after Werth came back from the broken wrist? With Harper finally going on a tear after floundering a bit when he first came up/

That one dude and don't tell me that isn't what won it because I was there and watched it both with eyes and stats ...

sheesh, they'll never learn

peric said...

I'll take it any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

I think I said that, but using my power vocabulary ...

MicheleS said...

From Amanda.. a little of the mystery is solved

Amanda Comak‏@acomak
Bryce Harper & Denard Span were hit w/stomach flu last night. Lively debate in clubhouse over which reliever would be 4th OF if necessary

peric said...

Natslady now your post is 3 weeks old. Chase mustn't like you?

Section 222 said...

Wait, peric, you were there at Nats Park and you didn't tell us? :-)

I doubt Harper was benched because of yesterday's baserunning miscue. That would be Davey cutting off our nose to spite our face, or something. Just a day's rest for a slumping guy, which he has to do sooner or later.

Having looked closely at Harper's hustle, I wouldn't push him to hard to control his aggression. Mistakes are going to happen, and with experience he'll get better at judging when he can take the extra base. He's already pretty amazing at it.

JD said...


Peric,

The point is that the Nats lineup as it's currently constituted is scoring at a sufficient pace. The only reason we are 8-5 and not 10-3 is spotty starting pitching and downright brutal bullpen work so far.

MicheleS said...

I wonder what Henry would be like in the OF?

Joe Seamhead said...

As most of you know, I trust Davey Johnson, but, [you knew there had to be a "but" here didn't you?], Dan Haren is a pitch to contact, trust your defense pitcher. My first reaction is: i don't really like that OF very much defensively, but in Davey I trust. I'm thrilled to see him using all of the bench and making sure that everybody feeling like they are contributing.
Relax, we got this!

Section 222 said...

So much for that debate. Thanks Michele, and Amanda.

MicheleS said...

So Stammen is the backup/emergency OF and all we have on the bench tonight is Solano and Tracy.

Section 222 said...

I wonder what Henry would be like in the OF?

I'd worry about his throws on base hits or sacrifice flies.

MicheleS said...

222..

At least we know why Span/Harper not playing. Hope they feel better. Remember when they all started getting sick at the end of last year.

JD said...


Joe S.

I am a big Davie fan too but I also think he's had a so so April thus far.

IMO he stayed too long with a struggling STras in Cinci, he took out Detwiler who was in perfect control in Cinci and the bullpen almost blew that game, he took out JZimm too early in his start against the White Sox and Detwiler against the Braves. The last move eventually cost us the game.

Section 222 said...

Wouldn't they use Espi in the field before a pitcher?

NatsJack in Florida said...

Don't worry. Rizzo will tell Davey what to do.

MicheleS said...

222.. Amanda said Espi is unavailable tonight as well.. still has swelling

A DC Wonk said...

Agreed with Candide here. Nobody's turning on Harper. But, still, he made a stupid play.

We all love his aggression on the basepaths, and, yes, sometimes he'll make outs.

But there are certain times you are *not* supposed to be aggressive, and that was one of them. You don't need to be at third with zero outs, being at second with zero outs is 99% as good, without any risk.

This was excusable last year -- but he should have learned it by now.

Hey, everybody makes mistakes. No biggie. I hope he learned big time from that one, because I hope not to see that one again.

SonnyG10 said...

I bet Jordan Zimmermann could do a good job in the outfield. He is athletic and pretty fast. We might need Stammen to pitch.

Section 222 said...

Don't worry. Rizzo will tell Davey what to do.

Huh?

baseballswami said...

Hope it's not contagious!

waddu eye no said...

PUT BABE IN?

(lets see who else is old enougj to have yelled that)

But seriously, as always,
GYFNG!!

Joe Seamhead said...

I've said it before, but it's worth repeating:
Two things everybody seems to think that they can do better is A; Run a restaurant, and B: Manage a baseball team. Fact is Davey Johnson has the second highest winning percentage of any living manager. [ and he has had some very crappy teams when he got there]. Do you really think that any one of us could possibly do better? Really? In what bizzarro land reality?
JD, no disrespect meant towards your opinion, but I think that there was method behind the madness of every one of those decisions.
Relax, We got this. GYFNG!!!


Secret wasian man said...

Any lineup we have should beat the Stanton less fish. With the exception of one guy. Ànd hes pitching tonight.

baseballswami said...

Must admit, Haren concerns me. But- hey!! The entire bullpen is fresh as a daisy. They can pitch tonight then tomorrow night Det can pitch 9.

MicheleS said...

Uhhh.. this could get interesting tonight

F.P. Santangelo‏@FightinHydrant
Strasburg and Jordan Zimmerman taking BP with positions players right now because of the shortage of players

baseballswami said...

I also think if Stammen was needed, he would play and do well. These guys are athletes.

baseballswami said...

Stras and Jordan are taking BP!!!!

JaneB said...

Yikes! Imagine putting Stras and Jordan in as pinch hitters!

GYFNG!

baseballswami said...

Stras had the silver slugger! Both can get a bunt down. They are probably both planning on hitting a walk off home run.

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

"Lively debate in clubhouse over which reliever would be 4th OF if necessary"

Oh to have been a fly on that wall...

MicheleS said...

Mark has a new post up about the 4th OF. Davey's last line is pretty hilarious

Joe Seamhead said...

Maybe Davey could activate Davey Johnson. I'd feel more comfortable with him then any of the bullpen guys.

[I had already posed this on the next post. Brought it back here.].

Candide said...

Man, that's the emptiest park I've seen since forever.

Scott Margenau said...

Larry lead off looks pretty good --

Lombo looks like he hit the weights offseason. Anyone notice?

Candide said...

Lombo's definitely bigger and stronger... been a topic of conversation here much of today.

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

Lombardozzi added a lot of mass last off-season, and probably kept that regimen or something like it this past winter, I'd imagine.

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

There you go. Another third baseman throwing to second with the runner nowhere near first yet. Maybe Polanco is not confident in his arm.

Scott Margenau said...

Lol untucked. U r persistent in your stance! That play was not comparable.

Lombo looks gold glove out there. I'll be bummed if espi comes back and bumps him.

Scott Margenau said...

Larry lead off!

309 Ba as lead off last year btw according to FP

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

Scott, not comparable at all. Just being a wise guy.

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

OK, so Haren's first start was horrible, but nobody loses 15-0 all by themselves. The next start was a W, so that's good. If, and I mean iff, he has a good day today, I think you have to say "so far, so good."

NatsJack in Florida said...

The Royals have taken a 2-1 lead over the Mighty Atlanta Braves.

Steady Eddie said...

OK, and with theMets 8-4 loss to the streaking Rockies, the Nats are back in second place.

And theRoyals' go-ahead run was scored by a runner who reached on, wait for it, third baseman Juan Francisco's throwing error.

This stuff all even out over the season.

Steady Eddie said...

Oy, WHAT to do about Zim's arm?

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

Dang. Harper would have thrown Polanco out on that, if he'd even tried to score.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

another unearned run. Plus the wind seem to come out of Haren.

jeffwx said...

E5

Drew said...

For goodness' sake. If the man can't throw, Peric might get his way.

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

Zim didn't exactly throw over the top on that. His upper arm was more or less parallel to the ground, and his forearm was around 12-1 o'clock. Is that the "new" way he's been throwing?

NatsJack in Florida said...

Zim needs a psychiatrist.

Wendell said...

My wife blames Zimms errant throws on newlywed problems.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

all rins this inning will be unrarned.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Thanks Zim

Drew said...

Another Zimmerman throwing error kills the Nats.

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

Holy Crap. I am sure that guy wasn't expecting to catch a fly ball tonight.

SCNatsFan said...

I'm already tired of seeing Haren on the mound for the Nats. Way to pick up Zim.

Exposremains said...

Zim throws have been a problem for years but it has cost the team big time this year...and Haren really hasn't been any good, no matter how you twist it.

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

Wendell said...
My wife blames Zimms errant throws on newlywed problems.


Well, Desmond's whole career turned around when his kid was born.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

This three games in ,5 a run that tied or cause the Nats to falk behind were unearned.

Not sure when it becomes a concern to Davey. To me it is already concern.

Who knows how many extra pitches caused by Zim

Wendell said...

4 unearned runs!

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

It's all about discipline.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Haren looked fine until the error. The rhythm got screwed up. no reason to keep having errors. Nats 15th in league in fielding

Steve J, Alexandria said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

Davey is probably miffed, but he knows it's a rough patch, for Zim at least.

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

And ... all together now ... "It's still early."

Wendell said...

When we were first married I don't remember having problems throwing to first

Drew said...

Steve J.:

No one agrees with you. We're talking about his future position, not sitting him down.

P.S. It's Sasser. Stop embarrassing yourself.

SCNatsFan said...

Manassas Haren is supposed to be a vet who doesn't get rattled, an error shouldn't shake him to give up a bomb to a punch hitter. In my opinion of course.

Depot Master said...

Not understanding the Haren haters. Zimm clearly is having issues with throws, but what would you have them do? Who sits? Who takes his place? He either builds up arm strength (which we have to wait out) or goes to the DL and you bring up Rendon. For now, we stand by the guys wearing the uniform!

Drew said...

Steve J:

Maybe you should stop chewing gum while you type.

It's Sasser.

Candide said...

Didn't they have a blurb up earlier about how Rosenbaum has an ERA of 0.82?

Yeah, Haren got thrown off his rhythm by RZimm's error. So what? You're supposed to be a professional, to shake it off and get back to business.

This is starting to look like the Brad Lidge gamble.

Lipty P said...

Y cant Zim throw like he did two yrs ago? Surgery should have healed his shoulder. Rizzo's offseason not looking good

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

Discipline and teamwork. Everybody on the same page. That's what it takes.

Ghost Of Steve M. said...

For those who questioned Advanced Scouting, Gattis 0-2 with 2 K's.

Candide said...

SCNatsFan, going to NIDO to owe you a drink. BRB.

Lipty P said...

Candide, Lidge didn't cost 13mil

Secret wasian man said...

I gotta do a little LOD. What a boring, sad MEDIOCRE!!! baseball team. Yes they can turn things around. But right now UGHHHHHHH. I will never quit but they are not good.

Sec. 3, My Untucked Sofa said...

Think I'll get one myself.

Ivan Tuski said...

why couldn't we move Desmond to third, Danny to short, Lombo to 2nd?
And Haren to Syracuse

Ivan Tuski said...

and maybe SJA to Syracuse too

Secret wasian man said...

Steve, for once I agree with you. This team is a mere shell of what it was in October. Baseball is only fun if your team is in the race. I fear the interest may be over by All Star break if not sooner.

David Proctor said...

You guys are comical. Davey gone by Labor Day. Are you insane?

Ivan Tuski said...

omg, this is a nightmare.
The Nats have lost their resilience. I just do not get it.

Secret wasian man said...

8 and 6 record. played the fish 5 times. awful. Bet the bullpen wishes it was at verizon center watching the Caps and drinking beer. AGAIN!!!

Depot Master said...

OK. Now it's tougher to believe they'll come back at 7-0. I still believe in Dan Haren. I still believe in Zimmerman. But if either is hurt they need to let some other guys play for awhile. Both have too long a history for us to be dismissing them in April.

Wendell said...

Hmm. It's clear that Zimm can't throw to first base. It's either recovering from surgery and slow to get into form; continuing physical problems - surgery did't fix; head case; anything else.

His errors have clearly cost games & thrown off pitchers.

What to do? If it's not in form or confidence, Davey's pattern is to let him play through it. If it's physical, he should go on DL & rehab.

What do you think?

Secret wasian man said...

What history does Dan Harren have with the Nats? Zimm I can say ok cause he was here in the bad years.

ehay2k said...

Steve J, you are clearly trying to rile people up and really are not contributing to the game thread.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

a 5-4-3 double play.

Where are the hitters from last night.

this game os winnable if we just hit like last night.

Candide said...

ehay, don't feed the troll.

EmDash said...

Haren starts, oh boy. When that guy melts down, he doesn't mess around. Have to think that's mental - he was cruising until the error, and then lost his control. And everything went too high. Even the Marlins know what to do with those.

It'd be interesting to know how many games they plan to give him to turn it around.

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Real problem is of the 12 pitchers only 2 have pitched well. That is not a good sign at all.

Secret wasian man said...

Haren is here for the CHECK. John Lannan did everything this team wanted last season. He was herioc after Stras was done. And how do we repay him? Inactive for post season. Ba humbug. Haren is a loss every five days.

Depot Master said...

Wendell, thanks for your intelligent commentary. I agree with all of it and it is written by a fan of the team, not someone who likes to hear themselves talk. Movie critics have some of the most depressing, loneliest lives... need I say more?

ehay2k said...

Steve, by your previous post it is clear that YOU are not rooting for the Nats. If that is the case, why post here?

Secret wasian man said...

Steve why dont you man up and admit your rooting for the Nats and just p------ed off right now. Its ok to vent. But if you not a Nats fan, go away. Why not go bother some Cubs fans are something. COWARD

mick said...

I would like to see us get a few runs tonight and then try to win tomorrow. The idea is to win each series.

Does Haren have a history of starting slow and getting in a groove as the season goes? If not, I hate to say this, but he is a bust. i have seen enough of him. It is not the end of the world, but the sooner the Nats part ways with him the better.

For what they are paying him, i expected better.

mick said...

I have no problem with our offense. i think a player like Haren hurts the morale of the team when they are at bat. The mind set is that no matter how many runs we score, Haren will give up more. i would just like to know what he did to prepare during Spring training? i am sure Davey and Cat would like to know as well.

Ivan Tuski said...

Zims back!

Secret wasian man said...

Mick, GREAT point.

Ivan Tuski said...

Well Mick Haren gave up nothing through 4 a
While the squandered opps

Lipty P said...

The idea is ti win series but against doubleA teams, idea is to sweep

ehay2k said...

Mick, Haren pitched really well until the fourth. Then Zimm's error, and TyMo's inability to get to that blooper (Harper would have had it), caused him to run out of gas. He has been a control pitcher his whole career, so 30+ pitches in an inning, this early in the year, was probably too much. And the Nats did not exactly give him a long rest before he came out for the fifth.

One thing I noticed Sunday at the game, was that when Gio needed a rest, Span was moving at half speed. He could off a pitch down the 1st base line, and it took him at least 20 seconds just to get back to the box. Harden didn't get that, in part perhaps because Span is out, but more likely because Haren had been cruising and the errors distracted the other guys from the fact that he needed a break.

mick said...

thanks Wasian man. I am not being negative, i am just pointing out what I feel is the one glaring weakness that can be corrected. Nats are going to be very good

Ivan Tuski said...

3 not 4, (giving him more credit than he deserved)

mick said...

ehay2K... I hope you are right, i would love for Haren o have a great year.

ehay2k said...

...he fouled off a pitch...
Dang auto correct

do1teach1 said...

Before this series started, I wrote this on this site:

A few thoughts before we start the Marlins series:

A caller to the pre-game radio show on Sunday asked about Zimm’s throwing. Dave and Charlie were full of happiness and assurance that Zimm wasn’t going anywhere, and it was all about the shoulder. Post-game, cheery Phil Wood kept all the focus on the shoulder, and said the problem Friday night was that Espi got to the bag too late—total nonsense. I have heard no commentary on the very real possibility that the problem is in Zimm’s head and appears to be getting worse. I hate the thought of Zimm going through the yips, but it looks like that may be where we’re headed.

End of excerpt.

I was chided on this site for such thoughts.

It is very important to remember that when we listen to our TV and radio teams, and to Phil Wood, that we are listening to Nats' employees. They are paid to give us the company line.

Since 2008, I have not seen Zimmerman make an overhand throw the same way twice. In that time, I have not seen any of the other starting 29 MLB third baseman make an overhead throw differently twice. They just throw. Bam, bam, bam.

This is a sad, tough situation. Zimm can tell us he "didn't set his feet." Phil Wood can say "Espinosa got there late." DJ can tell us Zimm's throwing is more free and natural than ever. But it is all PR.

This thing is in Zimm's head and I've never seen a baseball player get it out of his head, once it gets in there and starts screwing things up.

EmDash said...

Haren's history is unfortunately not necessarily relevant to how he'll be this year. The 2012 guy was almost entirely different from the guy that he was before because of injury struggles.

ehay2k said...

Mick, I'm happy to lose one out of every five games, just saying... :-)

Secret wasian man said...

Its ok to be a little negative right now. Team is very inconsistent right now. But we will keep watching and keep rooting. ALR not hitting, Zimm 4 errors in 5 games. Gio melting down. Not good baseball by the Vets.

Candide said...

Awesome Henry or Awful Henry tonight?

mick said...

I enjoyed Ray Knight talking about Pee wee Reese last evening. Reese was a class act and I am glad Ray brought u all he did to help Jackie Robinson face the nonsense that he did. It was uplifting to hear after sucha horrible day

Scott Margenau said...

Wow. First of all IVAN... Good idea on desi to third, he has a cannon arm. 2nd - Steve is kinda funny the way he riles ev1 up...he's my fav semi troll / O's fan.

He's also correct bout a lot of things.

zim to first. rendon or desi to third. Lombo 2nd. Fire harren. Call up some BP help. Release Henry.

That's a step in right direction.

phil dunton said...

Henry never disappoints. His consistency is truly amazing.

do1teach1 said...

When Pierre stole second, FP said he would guarantee that never happens again--meaning our coaching staff would ensure our bullpen starts holding runners this year. Then Pierre stole third, without a throw.

Memories of Molina taking second, jogging, with two outs in Game 5. Catastrophic.

Larry Bird said, "Never read your own clippings." We really have to be wary of the Nats PR machine.

Whynat said...

Well, at least the shark made a nice catch

Scott Margenau said...

Go caps!!!

DJB said...

Feels like the bad old days. What happened? Did they just put together one magical year? Are they so scarred from the Game 5 loss? We'll be dissecting the causes for years I'm afraid.

Scooter said...

Okay, this doesn't matter, and I hate the balk rule anyway, but does Henry Rodriguez balk on almost every pitch? He never comes set. I saw this (or thought I did) in his last appearance too. I wonder what others think.

Secret wasian man said...

Braves win again. 4.5 games back already. The curse of sports illustrated.

NatsLady said...

Barry Zito, who was so good in his first two starts, just got plastered for 9 runs, 1 in the 2nd inning, 8 in the 3rd inning... by Milwaukee, a team that was 3-8 going into this game.

Secret wasian man said...

Our 2nd best pitcher goes tommor. We will win the series.

Scott Margenau said...

I cringe when he throws,. (zimm) Kinda like I did when rg3 took off running with that brace....

It's red wine time.

Joe Seamhead said...

Win tomorrow, win the series. Relax. We got this. GYFNG!!!

Dan Strong said...

It's definitely early, but there are serious issues with this team that I don't think anyone can ignore. To me, the bullpen is the most glaring problem. I have no confidence in their ability to not surrender runs at all. Also, it feels like if we ever fall behind early, the offense just gives up. There is no fight to try and chip away at a lead.. Just trying to hit every single ball out of the park when base runners are what we need. Haren is making all the naysayers look like geniuses at this point, Ryan is single-handedly loosing games and I'm guessing that Davey does absolutely nothing to try to break out of this funk besides saying "everything is fine" and "it's early". I'm hoping that they're just all going through a funk together, but Atl isn't going to be waiting around for us to start playing good ball forever.

Faraz Shaikh said...

is the game over?

DJB said...

They lose tomorrow. I don't know why, but I don't sense any resilience with this team. Maybe having played for a losing franchise for so long, Zimm isn't mentally prepared to lead the team when the pressure rises. We definitely have a group of head cases on this team.

D'Gourds said...

anyone who continues to say zimmerman doesn't have a throwing issue, pull your head out of your @$$. the whole game changed on that error. a more resilient pitcher than haren might have been able to get through that. but Danny isn't there. the question is what do you do with this problem? can you bench the face of the franchise? at some point you have to face reality. zim is the worst 3rd baseman in baseball right now. will he get better with time, maybe. but if he doesn't improve his throwing, he'll continue to single handedly lose games for us. tough problem with no easy answer.

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