Friday, May 3, 2013

Game 30: Nats at Pirates

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
The Nationals are at beautiful PNC Park for a weekend series with the Pirates.
PITTSBURGH — Hello from what, in my humble opinion, is the best ballpark in America: PNC Park. Every time I gaze out at that vista from the press box, I have to remind myself I'm looking at reality, not a painting.

The Nationals are in town for a weekend series that won't be a piece of cake. The Pirates are playing very good baseball, and tonight they'll send veteran A.J. Burnett (your current NL strikeouts leader) to the mound. The Nats will counter with a lineup bolstered by the return of Ryan Zimmerman though lacking Jayson Werth (who will likely miss several days after re-tweaking his hamstring last night in Atlanta).

Interesting lineup from Davey Johnson, with Ian Desmond bumped up to Werth's 2-spot, and with Bryce Harper in left field while Tyler Moore is in right field. My hunch on that unorthodox outfield alignment: Left field is much more spacious here than right field is, so Davey probably prefers to have Harper patrolling all that ground.

Ross Detwiler gets the start for the Nationals, looking to do what Jordan Zimmermann and Dan Haren did so effectively the last two nights. Updates to come...

WASHINGTON NATIONALS at PITTSBURGH PIRATES
Where: PNC Park
Gametime: 7:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM), WFED (1500 AM), XM 184
Weather: Clear, 68 degrees, Wind 12 mph in from LF
NATIONALS (15-14)
CF Denard Span
SS Ian Desmond
LF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche
RF Tyler Moore
2B Danny Espinosa
C Kurt Suzuki
LHP Ross Detwiler

PIRATES (16-12)
LF Starling Marte
2B Jordy Mercer
CF Andrew McCutchen
1B Gaby Sanchez
C Russell Martin
RF Brandon Inge
3B Pedro Alvarez
SS Clint Barmes
RHP A.J. Burnett

UMPIRES
HP James Hoye
1B John Hirschbeck (cc)
2B Bob Davidson
3B Jim Reynolds

7:08 p.m. — And we are underway on an absolutely gorgeous Friday night in Pittsburgh. 72 degrees as A.J. Burnett fires strike one to Denard Span.

7:16 p.m. — Burnett has been one of the biggest surprises of the season's first month, and the Nationals just found out why. He struck out both Span and Desmond to add to his NL-leading total, then got Bryce Harper to ground out to second. One bright spot: Span really worked the at-bat, fouling a couple of pitches off his foot and hanging in there until Burnett struck him out on the eighth pitch. Ross Detwiler takes the mound for the bottom of the first.

7:25 p.m. — This just in: Andrew McCutchen is good. Really good. He crushed a 2-1 fastball from Detwiler into the second deck in left field, putting the Pirates up 1-0 after one. No shame on Detwiler's part in giving up a homer to McCutchen, who seems to terrorize the Nats every time he faces them. Fortunately, nobody was on base for this one.

7:35 p.m. — Ryan Zimmerman's first at-bat back from the DL is ... a strikeout. But in better news, Adam LaRoche roped an opposite-field single in the top of the second. He certainly has seemed to be looking to go the other way for the last few days, definitely since his pow-wow with Chipper Jones. Still 1-0 Pirates as we move to the bottom of the second. Oh, for those asking, McCutchen's career numbers in 24 games against the Nats: .448 AVG, 11 HR, 22 RBI, .520 OBP, .943 SLG, 1.463 OPS. Mercy.

7:50 p.m. — Three innings in, and the Nats really haven't made solid contact off Burnett. LaRoche's opposite-field single was probably the best. Kurt Suzuki was credited with a single on a slow roller to third, with Pedro Alvarez double-clutching before he got the throw off. Otherwise, it's been weak grounders or strikeouts so far. Still 1-0 Pittsburgh heading to the bottom of the third.

7:56 p.m. — Good stuff from Detwiler since the McCutchen homer in the first. He's retired seven straight, two on strikeouts, and is through three innings on 40 pitches. We'll see if the Nats lineup can start getting something going against Burnett in the fourth.

8:06 p.m. — And the Nats do get something going against Burnett in the fourth, with LaRoche drawing a two-out walk, Tyler Moore lining a base hit to center and Danny Espinosa delivering a clutch RBI single to right, scoring the ever-speedy LaRoche from second. Moore was thrown out at third on the play, but the Nats will trade that for the run. It's 1-1 in the middle of the fourth.

8:16 p.m. — Time to update that McCutchen stat: He's now hitting .455 in his career against the Nats after singling up the middle to lead off the bottom of the fourth. Detwiler got himself into a bit of a jam when he issued a one-out walk to Russell Martin. But he humped out and struck out both Brandon Inge and Pedro Alvarez to get out of it and end the fourth inning with this game tied 1-1.

8:36 p.m. — Um, somebody named Jordy Mercer just clobbered a two-run homer off Detwiler in the bottom of the fifth. He was just called up from Class AAA today when second baseman Neil Walker was placed on the DL. The real problem in the inning was LaRoche not being able to get the ball out of his glove when Detwiler had Marte picked off. That allowed the inning to continue and set Mercer up for his big blast. Oh, by the way, McCutchen singled again. He's now hitting .461 in his career against the Nats and is 3-for-3 tonight. Sweet. Fancy. Moses. Nats now trail 3-1 after five.

8:43 p.m. — Harper finally snapped his 0-for-14 skid, beating out an infield single. But he was immediately erased on a pickoff. Not good. Even worse: Zimmerman has struck out in all three at-bats tonight.

8:56 p.m. — Hmm, Detwiler issues a leadoff walk in the sixth, and out comes Capt. Hook to take the ball from him. That was a surprisingly quick hook from Davey, but he must have seen something out of Detwiler that concerned him. His final line: 5 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 2 HR, 84 pitches. Craig Stammen entered and got three quick outs, two of them on grounders to third. Those were the first defensive chances Zimmerman has had tonight and he executed both of them well. The first was a tough play and he side-armed the throw to first. The second was a routine play. Still 3-1 Pirates as we go to the seventh.

9:04 p.m. — Nothing happening in the top of the seventh for the Nats lineup, which has managed only one run on five hits while striking out nine times against Burnett, who has cruised. They're down to their last six outs now, still trailing 3-1.

9:16 p.m. — Whoa, the Nats actually retired McCutchen! Most shocking development of the night. We move to the eighth, still 3-1.

9:30 p.m. — Big chance for Harper in the top of the eighth, with two on and two out. Clint Hurdle surprisingly stuck with right-hander Mark Melancon instead of summoning one of his two lefties in the bullpen, but that move worked. Melancon struck out Harper on a 1-2 fastball, ending the rally. So the Nats are down to their last three outs, still trailing 3-1.

9:42 p.m. — Last chance upcoming. It'll be Zimmerman, LaRoche and Moore against Jason Grilli.

9:53 p.m. — It's over. The Nats lose another frustrating one, this time 3-1 to the Bucs. They fall back to .500 (15-15).

221 comments:

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NatsJack in Florida said...

Espinosa at 2b? Espinosa Stinks!

Eric said...

Nice to see most of our starters back in place. This would be a great night for the bats to awake in force!

livernonions said...

An English to Pittsburghese translator in case you need it, Mark.

http://www.pittsburghese.com/translator.shtml

baseballswami said...

Remember what Espi said about getting back into the lineup? Will that motivate him to have smart at bats and keep his head in the game defensively? Or will he continue to press and swing for the five run homer every pitch? Errors have been down or zero lately. Is that because they are more focused or because Espi and Zim were not on the field? Hoping for good stuff from Det, smart at bats and clean defense.

EmDash said...

Interesting stat of the day: as a team, the Pirates are currently batting .193/.264/.291 vs. lefty starters. May that continue today.

Desi's on a hot streak, but I don't know about him batting second. Not a guy who's going to see a lot of pitches...

Eric said...

I suppose it depends on how Burnett works. Is he the kind of guy you want to pounce on, a la Haren (as per Carp and FP last night), because of a nasty strike out pitch?

Manassas Nats' Fan said...

Hope poor hitting against lefties happen Sunday too.
I am in section 115 all 3 gamesw

bowdenball said...

EmDash said...

"Desi's on a hot streak, but I don't know about him batting second. Not a guy who's going to see a lot of pitches..."

I hear you, but who else in that lineup do you put second? Espi hasn't been seeing a lot of pitches either this season. Moore and LaRoche have OBPs under .220 this season and can't run. Davey likes hitting the catchers 8th to reduce the physical burden on them. Would be fun to move Harper up to 2, but that ain't happening. You're kind of stuck with a middle infielder batting second on this team if Werth is out.

JD said...

' Would be fun to move Harper up to 2, but that ain't happening.'

That's exactly what I'd like to see happen.

Span, Harper, Zim, LaRoche, Desmond, Moore, Espi, Suzuki would be my lineup.

Exposremains said...

Espinosa gets benched for 2 days. Big deal. DJ really loves him. About sitting for the Pirates series. What happens if he looks the same tonight? Does he get benched again? If I'm Lombo, I'm really wondering what I need to do to get the respect Espinosa gets in this organization.

NatsLady said...

Welcome back, Ryan!

So, Werth did tweak his hamstring last night after everyone knew it was chancy. Go with your first instinct, Davey! Sit him as long as necessary.

IKN8wxU2 said...

I'm actually happy to see Danny back in the lineup, because he's clearly better defensively (probably even more important with Detwiler on the mound) and because the sooner he turns around his hitting the sooner the Nats start to reach their potential.

I've got to think his BABIP has to even out. He and LaRoche have had a lot of hard hit balls get caught.

NatsLady said...

The blogroll is three days (and two posts) behind. I can't figure out if there is anything I can do about it, I know Mark has tried. If you are interested, just click on the "Lady and the Nats" and you will see the most recent stuff on Opening Day Starters and a comparison between the Nats and the Twins. I've tried to get my stuff on baseball reference, but apparently they have the same problem. Luckily, I'm not making my living as a blogger. :)

I have a post ready on Jeff Locke, tomorrow's starter which I'll put up soon. I'd call him a crafty lefty (definitely NOT a fireballer)--except the "crafty" part remains to be seen.

EmDash said...

Yeah, I guess it's hard to say who to put second.

Jeff Locke's FIP is much higher than his ERA, which could indicate a certain degree of luck his going on for him so far. Of course, that's true to a lesser extent for Detwiler and Zimmermann too, so it could be he's just an extreme groundball guy that tends to get underestimated by that stat. And god knows the Nats haven't been great at hitting lefties either this season...

Another_Sam said...

Nice to see RZ back in the lineup, but . . . what a difference it was watching several games where the entire infield could make that over the top throw. I sure hope that RZ can get a handle on that throwing.

peric said...

Espinosa doesn't stink you do dude ... to high heaven.

Janus said...

Couple days late but my prediction of Desi in the 2 spot actually happened.

JD said...


NatsJack,

The trouble with you is that you are not clear with your opinions. How do you really feel about Espi?

JaneB said...

GYFNG!

sajfh.fgck.jasd.KLGV.Ksdg said...

"NatsJack in Florida said...

Espinosa at 2b? Espinosa Stinks!"

(a) He is who he is, and he'll never improve if all he does is sit on the bench. Likewise, he's not going to unlearn any bad habits by being sent down to face minor league pitching.

(b) If you've ever listened to Phil Wood's postgame call-in show, by far the majority of calls he receives are anti-Espinosa tirades. Phil says there are other teams inquiring about him all the time, yet so far Rizzo has refused to trade him. Still, Phil Wood thinks the most likely outcome for Espinosa is a trade. So perhaps you should join with Phil and change your mantra to "Trade Espinosa!"

baseballswami said...

I think Desi can hit in any spot in the lineup. He might not change how he does things or behave according to the handbook. But it 's not going to affect him or bother him. Pretty unflappable.

Eric said...

I do think NatsJack has the right approach, even if I disagree. It's *always* best to start off with a negative note.

sajfh.fgck.jasd.KLGV.Ksdg said...

"baseballswami said...

I think Desi can hit in any spot in the lineup. He might not change how he does things or behave according to the handbook. But it 's not going to affect him or bother him. Pretty unflappable."

He was a terrible leadoff hitter when Davey put him there to start the 2012 season.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Of course I stink. I just finished cutting the grass here in Florida after 9 days in DC and the past 4 days of rain.

Lawn was thick!

peric said...

And I still think PAC Bell is the best park.

NatsJack in Florida said...

I'll stop my mantra when Danny reaches .230 (which still stinks).

bowdenball said...

Exposremains said...

"If I'm Lombo, I'm really wondering what I need to do to get the respect Espinosa gets in this organization."

I agree. How do you bench a guy who is 1 for his last 22 with 1 walk and no extra base hits? Look no further, baseball fans- we've found your NL starter at second base for the 2013 All-Star game.

peric said...

I just cycled 30 miles and I still like Espinosa at 2b or short. Now ancient, slow, creaky LaRoche at first? Bad back? Not so much and from the start.

Eric said...

"I'll stop my mantra when Danny reaches .230 (which still stinks)."

Fair enough, but I'd like to point out that the last thing it is is a mantra. Mantras don't generally seek to transform via negativity. Quite the opposite, really.

baseballswami said...

Catching up with some highlights from the last two nights on my DVR. The vaunted Barves hitters showed lots of emotion. They were clearly frustrated and ticked off. Quite amusing. Also- I am going to harp on Lombo 's baseball IQ. In the first inning last night, Span on second, he had a very head's up at bat. Started out as a bunt to move Span, then avoided getting hit by a Henry- like wild pitch, but stayed enough in the way to make things complex, then immediately switched into RBI mode, noticed the 3b was playing too shallow and scooted the ball past him for the run. Danny would never, ever have handled that at bat so intelligently. He would have thought 2 run homer and made quick work of getting out without moving the runner or scoring that run.

peric said...

The more Moore plays with Harper, Zim, and Desmond the better chance the offense has if developing. The rest can be plug-in replacements ...

JD said...


.230 doesn't necesarily stink. In 2011 Espi hit .236 but had an OBP of .323 which is ok. This year it's .173 .212 which does in fact stink.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Hence you get my point.

Eric said...

"The vaunted Barves hitters showed lots of emotion. They were clearly frustrated and ticked off. Quite amusing."

That was about the best thing about the last 2 nights. They also seemed to be making a lot of the same kinds of errors we made in our home series against them.

All around those 2 games were a great way to end the visit.

baseballswami said...

And yes, Desi stunk at leading off over a year ago for a short time. That doesn't mean he always would. His maturity as a hitter since then is off the charts. Not saying he should at all, but I bet he could.

Eric said...

2 things I would love to see, in order of prefrence: 1) For Espinosa improve at the plate. 2) For people to stop talking about Espinosa for one week.

JD said...


Swami,

I love Desi but at the top of the order I want OBP guys and Desi is not an OBP guy. I think Harper always gives us a chance to score in the 1st inning and the higher leverage you put him in (less outs) the better.

Rich P. said...

Espi is the Feel of the Nats lineup. People talk about how much they hate him whether he's there or he's not there.

EmDash said...

LaRoche has looked better the last few games, though. I'm thinking/hoping this is the series where he starts to break out.

baseballswami said...

J'D-- agreed , just happened to make a statement that Desi is so adaptable he could bat anywhere. Thought it was just a casual remark about a player, but.......

baseballswami said...

EmDash-- in Pittsburgh? Where for some reason they boo him unmercifully? Oh, well, maybe he will! That stadium has been the scene of his spring slumps a few times.

NatsJack in Florida said...

LaRoche really loves the warm welcome he gets in Pittsburgh.

Candide said...

Apropos of nothing... Cunegonde and I are in upstate New York, and spent the day at the baseball hall of fame.

Eat your hearts out, NIers. : -)

Also, GYFNG!!!

Eric said...

What better way to respond to boos from the opponent than to give them more reason to boo ya?

Rich P. said...

Does the Nats display locker at the HoF still contain Mike Bacsik/Bonds 756th memorabilia?

Another_Sam said...

Candide - Was this your first trip to the Hof? What did you like? To my amazment, I really liked the hall itself, with the plaques.

Exposremains said...

Bowden

Espinosa had 2 years to make adjustments and has made none. Give Lombo at least a week and then you can quote me his stats.

baseballswami said...

Candide- been there many times. Love it!

MicheleS said...

OOO Candide, I am jealous...

I think Roche breaks out this weekend. He loves hitting in the Burgh - especially when the crowd is booing him. Det is going to bounce back after 1 rough start. He will answer the bell.

GYFNG!!!!

Another_Sam said...

Swami -it's very cool, I agree. I think we've been three times.

sjm308 said...

Really hope Espinosa learned a little by sitting. I can't imagine if he goes 0-4 that Davey will yank him but if he has two games of 0fer we might see Lombo back. There is more to this game then just hitting (duh) and if we can keep winning and Danny plays his usual excellent defense, we should be ok.

I had to skip a few posts but I am sure someone is happy Moore is back in the lineup as well.

Hope we start a nice winning streak before heading back home. Manassas Nats Fan - please do not start the wave even if we are winning big.

Go Nats!!

sjm308 said...

Another Sam - so did I!! It was great fun to walk around and look for all the old Senators. My mom also loved Duke Snider so I took a picture of that as well. For some reason, I could not find Eddie Yost's plaque. Must have been out being polished or something.


Go Nats!!

sjm308 said...

One last post - I am hopeful of being alive when it occurs, but I wonder who the first Washington National will be? The obvious hope would be Harper. I just don't see Zimmerman having a career that puts him in the Hall. Desmond actually might at least earn votes if he continues to improve, and my dark horse is Jordan Zimmermann.

baseballswami said...

Sjm- not even looking at the line score, but at the approach with Danny. If he goes 0 fer but is being smart out there and plays good D, that's one thing. If he just goes out there and it 's same stuff, different day , that will not sit well. They will have to see that he is doing what they have asked him to do.

Another_Sam said...

sjm308 - My first trip, I made a beeline for Killebrew's plaque. I he knew the impact that he, Lemon, Pascual, and the rest had on me as a child . . .

baseballswami said...

First person in the HOF as a Nat? Davey?

baseballswami said...

Anyone ever go to an induction weekend? What an event!

Eric said...

"If he goes 0 fer but is being smart out there and plays good D, that's one thing."

Yeah, Danny's only sure way to remain in the starting rotation at the moment is to resume his tight D. That's really his ace in the hole, and it was disappointing when he slipped up on that front.

Candide said...

Rich P. - Nats display has Alfonso Soriano's Jersey from when he stole his 40th base. Nothing for the current Nats, except for an 8x10 color glossy photo of Bryce Harper. But that will change soon, I'm sure.

Third or fourth visit. Cunegonde's first. When we were done looking at the Hank Aaron shrine (that's the only suitable description), she asked, He's in the Hall of Fame, right?"

Yes, there are still amusing gaps in her baseball knowledge...

baseballswami said...

Anyone who is out of the area, our game is the MLB TV free game today. So - any predictions on Mets/ Barves?? Go Mets??

IKN8wxU2 said...

If Danny is playing his usual excellent D and making hard contact, that's all you can ask.

Ghost Of Steve M. said...

Espinosa needs to make Rizzo look good. All I have to say is Espinosa has Boras as HIS agent.

bowdenball said...

Exposremains said...


"Espinosa had 2 years to make adjustments and has made none. Give Lombo at least a week and then you can quote me his stats."

A week? How about 500 career plate appearances? Can I quote you those stats? Here they are: .304 career OBP, .338 career slugging, 5 career steals, average to below-average on all advanced fielding measures.

Nothing against Lombardozzi who is a great asset on the 25 man roster, just not a starter. This is a textbook case of "grass is greener" syndrome.

Rich P. said...

"One last post - I am hopeful of being alive when it occurs, but I wonder who the first Washington National will be?"

Davey Johnson. Or Pudge Rodriguez. But neither one would go into the HoF as a Nat. Okay, Davey might. But a Met would be more likely.

IKN8wxU2 said...

bowdenball said:

"Nothing against Lombardozzi who is a great asset on the 25 man roster, just not a starter. This is a textbook case of "grass is greener" syndrome."

In pointy ball, it's the backup quarterball syndrome.

Exposremains said...

Before rendon takes over, i want to see lombo. That is all. I don't think this team is better with espi.

baseballswami said...

But in all fairness, those career starts and at bats are mostly scattered or in smaller bunches.

SonnyG10 said...

baseballswami said...
Anyone ever go to an induction weekend? What an event!
May 03, 2013 5:03 PM


I was there at Len Dawson's induction, quite by accident. My wife and I were camping in the area and I wanted to visit the HOF and it just happened to be the weekend Dawson was inducted.

JD said...

'Before rendon takes over, i want to see lombo. That is all. I don't think this team is better with espi.'

This is as subjective a comment as I have seen. The numbers say otherwise.

SonnyG10 said...

My bad memory. It was Andre Dawson inducted along with Doug Harvey and Whitey Herzog.

Wasn't Len Dawson an old KC Chiefs quarterback?

Exposremains said...

I dont think i need to pull a page of numbers to prove my point that Espi hasn't been good. Its been done already. You can call that subjective if that makes you happy. I like the approach of Lombo yesterday and I wanted to ply again today.

Exposremains said...

I actually think that Espi could be really good but everything has been handed to him to easily and he should earn is spot back.

baseballswami said...

Went to Nolan Ryan's . Two other big names, I forget. My son turned 16, that was his favorite player as a kid.

JD said...


Exposremains,

I watch the games like you and I often scream at the TV when Espi is hitting or more accurately swinging and missing often. But when making a determination on who should play you have to look at the overall landscape which in baseball is best represented by reasonably agreed upon numbers.

At the end of the day Espi contributes to more Nats wins than Lombo based on a series of objective measures not feelings. Admittedly, Espi's performance this year so far has been awful but given last year's performance for example he is the better player.

MicheleS said...

Swami..

I have been to induction weekend:

Nolan Ryan/George Brett/Robin Yount/orlando cepeda

Ryne Sanberg

Cal/Tony

Ron Santo/Barry Larkin

I love going induction weekend, the next one I go to will be Maddux. Then Pudge

baseballswami said...

When my parents were alive they lived only 45 minutes from Coopetstown so we went often. Great memories. Haven't been in a long time.

Another_Sam said...

On the recent lineup - I'm glad that someone else is hitting behing Harper. BTW, what will they do when LaRoche dips below the double Mendoza line? [Or is that the half Mendoza line?]

baseballswami said...

Maybe it 's the Mendoza abyss.

Gonat said...

Danny shouldn't sit on the bench for several games in a row. Let's see what he learned while sitting on the bench sulking.

Play like it's your birthday!

NatsJack in Florida said...

Just let me know when he reaches .230.

Gonat said...

NatsJack, Danny is at a .212 OBP, is the .230 for his BA or OBP?

NatsJack in Florida said...

'cause otherwise......he stinks.

NatsJack in Florida said...

You've got to be kidding......BA.

Gonat said...

NatsJack, All Danny has to do is go 11 for 29 to get to .230

NatsJack in Florida said...

See.....I'm not asking much.

Gonat said...

McCutcheon circled the Nats on his calendar. Ugh.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Uhh.....Ross.....it's about location.

Ghost Of Steve M. said...

I'd suggest working McCutheon away Ross.

Gonat said...

3 pitches to Ryan Zimmerman and he can sit back down.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Second time through, the Nats are going to tag Burnett.

Sj said...

ALR coming out of super slump?

NatsJack in Florida said...

It's Tyler time.

Gonat said...

It's Danny time!

baseballswami said...

It's hitting time - whoever you are.

Rich P. said...

So all it took to get LaRoche going was a little booing? Why didn't WE think of that?

NatsJack in Florida said...

Espinosa..best two takes I've seen but....he stonks.

phil dunton said...

Espinosa stinks!

David Proctor said...

Mark Zuckerman ‏@ZuckermanCSN 1m
For those asking, McCutchen's career stats in 24 G vs. #Nats: .448 AVG, 11 HR, 22 RBI, 1.463 OPS. Mercy. #Pirates

Yikes.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Stinks

Sj said...

Oh, rest assured I did Rich!

Gonat said...

Lombo could catch that popup.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Remember what I said....second time through the Nats are gonna beat Burnett like a drum.

MicheleS said...

Det needs to learn how to handle the bat. GEESH.. take a hack.

Ghost Of Steve M. said...

There's the failure to execute a bunt.

Gonat said...

If Detwiler gets the bunt down, Suzuki holds at 2nd and Desmond has an infield hit with Harper coming up.

Gonat said...

SteveM, I saw your comments earlier that you believe Espi doesn't want to dive for balls in the field because of his shoulder. Interesting to keep an eye on.

Exposremains said...

Its amazing how a 1-0 deficit seems huge these days

NatsJack in Florida said...

Gonat....I told Mark Z that exact same thing in Spring Training that I thought the only issue with the injury would be just that.

Gonat said...

Zim couldn't reach that outside pitch if he had a 40 inch bat.

Exposremains said...

He's really far in the box

phil dunton said...

Bring Rendon back!

NatsJack in Florida said...

I'm sorry...did I say second time through? I meant third.

Gonat said...

NatsJack in Florida said...
Gonat....I told Mark Z that exact same thing in Spring Training that I thought the only issue with the injury would be just that.

May 03, 2013 7:59 PM
_______________________________

Yah, I was reading through the morning and afternoon's posts on Espinosa. He's dropped down a few notches on the UZR.

That's interesting that you thought that early on and SteveM mentioned it as an issue.

Gonat said...

NatsLady thought it was the camera angle on how far RZ stood from the plate and Bob Carpenter made it clear, it's not an optical illusion.

Rich P. said...

Third game, right?

Gonat said...

TyMo now up to .200 with that hit!

NatsJack in Florida said...

Uh oh....Danny.

Gonat said...

Espinosa finds open grass and a clutch RBI! Put bat on ball and you never know.

Exposremains said...

Good job Espi. Keep it up. You don't need to hit homeruns.

Jerry said...

Es-pin-o-sa!

NatsJack in Florida said...

Sweet. But since he's not at .230 yet....Espinosa Stinks.

UnkyD said...

TWO OUT RALLY!! My favorite kind!

Gonat said...

Dead red fastball and lucky that didn't go over the centerfield wall.

Exposremains said...

I know Mccutchen is good but come on they need to get him out once in a while

NatsJack in Florida said...

If anybody doesn't appreciate what D-Span means to this club, well.....I don't want to go there

Gonat said...

NatsJack in Florida said...
If anybody doesn't appreciate what D-Span means to this club, well.....I don't want to go there


May 03, 2013 8:12 PM
______________________________

I think even Peric jumped on the bandwagon and now is back on the bench Werth mantra.

Gonat said...

I will start the next controversy. Ryan Zimmerman looks lost at the plate. Any reason why he wouldn't have played yesterday in another rehab game and maybe a few more? With Rendon manning 3rd, I can't see the huge rush to get RZ back before he's bashing. Besides the one mistake pitch he hit into the Clevelander in Miami, he was scuffling.

6 pitches, 6 strikes, 2 K's. Painting the outside with a red target saying HIT IT!

Gonat said...

Next inning is 3rd time around for the Nats on Burnett.

RickH said...

DENARD SPAN!!!

Gonat said...

WEB GEM! DSPAN!!!

Gonat said...

That's a gut punch.

mick said...

This is a good game, but Ross just pissed me off. That should NEVER happen with a left handed pitcher and now he gets rattled and throws a gopher ball. I do not think I have ever seen a base runner steal like that from first to second on a left hander?

NatsJack in Florida said...

Hey Ross.....why don't you throw one down the middle?

Gonat said...

Can Zuk go out to talk to Ross? Help him out.

mick said...

I'm sorry but Cat and Davey better lay into his ass

Exposremains said...

Seems like teams have started to figure out Det. Wasn't so great against the Reds in his last starts.

mick said...

#4, if you are here, you and I both know what Coach Buddy would be thinking about now to say to Det, lol

Gonat said...

Ross isn't fooling anybody. They are just sitting fastball.

NatsJack in Florida said...

And I don't like Suzuki moving his glove after the catch to frame. Umps hate that.

Exposremains said...

Why would anybody throw inside to Zim

Gonat said...

Expos, only by mistake.

Gonat said...

....like that pitch and still swung through it.

mick said...

stupid baseball!

Gonat said...

oh Bryce. oh Byce. Say it ain't so Bryce.

NatsJack in Florida said...

More dumb baseball.

mick said...

We can not hit are way out of a paper bag gang!

NatsJack in Florida said...

I owe you one mick.

Exposremains said...

Zim really could have waited out this serie in rehab.

phil dunton said...

Zim has been a sucker for the low outside pitch his whole career.

mick said...

Burnett is damn good, Nats don't need to help him out jeezh!

mick said...

drinks on me Nats Jack, lol

mick said...

Matty Alou, that was the Pirate I forgot from 69!

Secret wasian man said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
NatsJack in Florida said...

Ross didn't pitch bad....he just didn't measure up to Zimnn and Haren.

Secret wasian man said...

Mick. we cant hit out of a WET paper bag.

NatsJack in Florida said...

SWM.....this place will pound you for that kind of language.

Ghost Of Steve M. said...

Ghost Of Steve M. said...
http://www.masnsports.com/byron_kerr/2013/05/nationals.html

When is one rehab start enough to declare you are ready after going 0-3 against some "A" ball pitching?

We know RZim was supposed to play 2 games and the weather was poor on Tuesday but why not play last night somewhere or even delay coming off of the DL a few more days to make sure you can hit the Minor Leaguers.

Zimmerman played third base for the Potomac Nationals in his lone rehab start to test the recovery of a sore hamstring, and despite an 0-for-3 performance, he felt his swing and timing are back.

"Everything feels good," Zimmerman said. "I think seeing some live pitching was good. I saw pretty much every pitch, fastball, slider, change up. It is always nice to get some of that before you get right back into it."

I am in wait and see mode also. Come on Ryan, let's see it!
May 03, 2013 10:03 AM


O-3 and 3 K's tonight. 8 K's in his last 15 ABs. What was the rush to get him back?

I was hoping I was wrong. Just another poor decision by management to get him back before he was really ready to hit.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Thank God Zim was throwing on the run.

Secret wasian man said...

And what is ALRs excuse?

NatsJack in Florida said...

WOW! Thay throw looked almost routine!

Eric said...

Yes, well done Zim!

A'ight claw yer way back boys.

Ghost Of Steve M. said...

And I want to apologize for sounding like the Legion of Doom but I will no longer rely on much of what Ryan Zimmerman says. I'm in show me mode with him. 1 rehab start going 0-3 against a 23 year old journeyman still stuck in A ball didn't give me a great feeling. When I heard he was going to skip Thursday's game, I wondered why Ryan didn't stay for another game. Now he is doing his rehab start in the cleanup spot and his timing is way off. Will it take 1 more AB or 10 more?

Gonat said...

Yep, Legion of Doom.

Secret wasian man said...

Ghost I agree. What scares me is that if Davey gives him as much time as he has ALR we are really in trouble. We had a little something going that last 2 games. Albeit mostly pitching. But he should have left it alone. HOW LONG DOES ECKSTEIN LAST????

NatsJack in Florida said...

I kind of agree with you Ghost. But I've seen Ryan walk in to Spring Training and starr crushing from day one.

I do agree he's so far off the plate that he'll never see an inside pitch to turn on so until he's driving the ball to right, he stinks.

baseballswami said...

Det gave up three. On two home runs. Not like he got shelled. Davey needed a game for relievers to work . On the other hand , pitcher has the highest K total in the league. Of course. Game is theoretically still within reach.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Oh yes....Espinosa Stinks.

Secret wasian man said...

when was the last time the nats came from behind to win??

David Proctor said...

That call on Espinosa was awful. I don't even blame him for that one, it was Ball 4.

baseballswami said...

Have we come from behind this season? And by the way, I hear Chipper is open to a hitting coach job . You know, that last throw by Zim was nice looking.

Gonat said...

FP has to be reading NatsInsider with that comment about mental errors. I read that earlier here also.

NatsJack in Florida said...

That's enough. Base stealer on base and Espinosa doesn't know he's got coverage? Inexcuseable!!!!

baseballswami said...

Could be. He tweets a lot so he is pretty wired in.

David Proctor said...

For as bad as our bullpen has been, Craig Stammen has been great. He's really overlooked.

Gonat said...

Time for a come from behind Win!!!!

Exposremains said...

Didn't Burnett do the same thing to the Nats last year.

NatsJack in Florida said...

WOW! Another normal throw from Zim!

Secret wasian man said...

There is something more here than guys being hurt, trouble gettting going, pressing... There is a virus or cancer somewhere around this team. Maybe not a player but something. And that is a managers job to find out what it is and fix it. too many of the same types of mistakes. nothing ever changes. Its been to long now!!

NatsJack in Florida said...

I've always said that these are the toughest 6 outs in baseball. The Nats have to produce.

David Proctor said...

Huh. Stammen apparently balked.

Gonat said...

I wouldn't be surprised if Bob and FP spent some time reading all the Blogs and especially here. Why not get the pulse of what the fans that watch are thinking.

NatsJack in Florida said...

I apologize to Espinosa and the Nats. Balking Bob Davidson at his stupid self.

Gonat said...

Need baserunners!

Secret wasian man said...

Not tough 6 outs with the NATS BATS.

baseballswami said...

Bad combination of a pitcher on top of his game and a lineup with huge holes. The guys who should be producing are hitting in the low two hundreds and below. And one veteran hitter can't play. Bryce is dinged up. Where is this offense you seek supposed to come from?

NatsJack in Florida said...

Re: Alverez.....never trust a guy who has to tuck his ears under their caps.

Gonat said...

swami, Ian Desmond

Gonat said...

Nats need some May magic!

Exposremains said...

Come on Harper, time to be the man

Secret wasian man said...

CMON Bryce

baseballswami said...

Ian can go yard, but it sure would be nice if he had some help out there. Bryce would be hitting if he was not hurt.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Too many people watch numbers instead of the actual games.

baseballswami said...

Some ugly numbers on twitter . We are 0-13 when trailing after seven. So no, we have not come from behind.

Exposremains said...

Harper is hurting and so are the Nats

baseballswami said...

I know he wants to be on there, but playing like this could cause him to develop some bad mechanics.

Gonat said...

Ian did his job and the Buco's decide to pitch to Harper instead of going after Ryan Zimmerman. That surprised me. It worked out for them.

Secret wasian man said...

ITS BASEBALL Nats Jack. Numbers dont lie. I watch the games and watch the numbers. And both say the NATS STINK!! But we will be fine. Mr October (sports illustated)pitches tommorow

baseballswami said...

Aroldis Chapman totally melted down today. I will take charity if someone 's closer is due for a rough outing.

Scott Margenau said...

I agree

NatsJack in Florida said...

There's an old baseball saying, SWM....numbers are figures....figures lie and liars figure.

The games are meant to be watched, not figured.

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