Sunday, August 8, 2010

Game 112: Nats at Dodgers

Photo courtesy Los Angeles Dodgers
The Nats wrap up a three-game series today at Dodger Stadium.
When last we saw Jason Marquis, he was suffering through the worst start of his (or most any pitcher's) career. On April 18, the veteran right-hander faced seven Brewers. He didn't retire any of them. This, after struggling big-time in his previous two starts, leaving him with the lopsided ERA of 20.52.

Nearly four months later, Marquis finally returns to a big-league mound today. His elbow is healthy, having had bone chips removed. He pitched well in his last rehab start with Class AAA Syracuse. And now he's determined to pitch the way he expected to all along after signing a two-year, $15 million contract last winter.

Because of that contract, the Nationals pretty much have no choice but to make Marquis a part of their rotation the rest of this season and into 2011. It would be nice, though, if he could at least pitch with some effectiveness and earn some of that money over the next seven weeks.

Ted Lilly, another veteran with a solid track record who missed a good chunk of time earlier this season due to injury, starts today's series finale for the Dodgers. The Nats, who lost a heartbreaker in 10 innings last night, need a win today to finish this road trip with a 4-3 record.

As you know by now, I wasn't in Los Angeles this weekend for the series. I'm flying home today from Phoenix to Washington, but I'm due to arrive before this game starts, so I should be able to post lineups before things get underway...

Where: Dodger Stadium
Gametime: 4:10 p.m.
TV: Ch. 50, MASN2
Radio: WFED-1500 AM, WWFD-820 AM
Weather: Sunny, 68 degrees, Wind 8 mph out to CF
2B Alberto Gonzalez
SS Ian Desmond
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam Dunn
LF Josh Willingham
RF Michael Morse
CF Justin Maxwell
C Wil Nieves
P Jason Marquis

DODGERS (57-54)
LF Scott Podsednik
2B Ryan Theriot
RF Andre Ethier
1B Jones Loney
CF Matt Kemp
3B Ronnie Belliard
SS Jamey Carroll
C A.J. Ellis
P Ted Lilly

3:45 p.m. -- If you haven't heard yet, the Nationals have placed Ross Detwiler on the 15-day DL with a right hip strain, the roster move necessary to bring Marquis back. Detwiler, who of course had hip surgery in February, apparently felt some soreness after his last start. He's due to undergo an MRI tomorrow after the team returns to D.C. Meanwhile, Craig Stammen has been moved to the bullpen, which will open the spot for Stephen Strasburg to rejoin the rotation on Tuesday. The Nats still will have to remove someone from the 25-man roster before activating Strasburg. Collin Balester would seem the obvious choice. So, the five-man rotation moving forward this week will be: Strasburg, Olsen, Hernandez, Lannan, Marquis.


Doc said...

Go MarkMeister! Best blog in MLG--even when you're not at the game!

Les in NC said...

I hope Marquis pitches well enough to keep us in the game. The Nats have a terrible track record on Sunday games, losing the last 6 on Sunday. So for Jason's sake and the team's sake we need him to prove that he is a viable pitcher again.

JaneB said...

We were at that last game he pitched and the whole stadium felt for him. I hope he is the Jason Marquis he wants to be, and we all want him to be. Go Jason!

Anonymous said...

If he's not you could see Stammen as he has now been moved into the bullpen.

JayB said...

Good for the Nats for seeing the facts with Ross Detwiler....he was not ready, they did not get him ready and now he is on the DL....He needs a heavy duty off season strength and conditioning program and early start to Spring be in camp in mid January.

OlneyNat said...

I really like this lineup. It should be the everyday lineup with the exception of Nieves and Bernadina in CF. Kennedy should be done except as a backup/pinch hitter after another awful play last night, which may have been the worst of many this season. This lineup with Bernadina and Pudge, plus the return of Strasburg and Marquis could give us a realistic chance of playing .500 ball over the last 50 games.

kevin rusch, section 406 said...

well, Marquis doesn't look any better than he did in April, so far.

Bzl. said...

two outs now, so no more earned runs in the first. This means that there will only be one earned run in the first inning, so Marquis' ERA just dropped!

Dryw Loves the Nats said...

and the Nats' chances of winning this game just dropped, too. Wow that was an ugly half inning.

Anonymous said...

OK. Turned off the TV already. Absolute Little League level of play. Guess I'll go cut the grass.

Dryw Loves the Nats said...

Michael Morse, I love you. J-Max, way to go blind squirrel!

Arlington Big Fish said...

According to GameDay stats, Wil Nieves is batting .176 -- .009 better than Jason Marquis. Why is this guy still in the majors, when we supposedly have a "major-league ready" catcher on the payroll?

Anonymous8 said...

JMax, actually swung with his head on the ball. Still has a long swing which still will cost him and thats where I don't get it with him. Hits well in AAA, comes to the bigs and looks lost.

Anonymous8 said...

OMG, Bob Crapenter doesn't even no the Infield Fly rule. It was men on 1st and 3rd Bob and it has to be men on 1st and 2nd or bases loaded with less than 2 outs for Infield Fly.

Bob made that call in the bottom of the 6th with the Dodgers up.

Mark said...

A8 - You have to kNOw that Dribble didn't even corrct him. I TiVod back to listen to Bobby Carp and he is lost so often.

Maybe Mark Z. can help him with rule 6.05e.

Dryw Loves the Nats said...

Why can't there be a mercy rule in MLB???

Les in NC said...

Yeah, a mercy rule that says the Nationals shouldn't have to play on Sundays. This one makes 7 Sunday losses in a row.

Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me said...

@Les: No wonder I've been in such lousy moods for the last month of Sundays.

Jesus will save the day on Tuesday ... and then pitch again next Sunday. HOORAY!

Anonymous said...

Nice move, a fake injury for Detweiler to create a spot for Marquis and Stammen hits the bullpen to make room for Little Stephen....FAIL!

Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me said...

Bally Star back to SYR. Helmet manufacturers, adjust your production accordingly.

Bote Man said...

- High-dollar starting pitcher...check

- Bone chips removed from pitching elbow...check

- Same blah performance as indicated by his 10-year career pitching record...check

Yep, it's the Natinals. Whaddaya expect???

LoveDaNats said...

Darn! I have tickets for Sunday. I hate knowing we'll lose before I even get there.

NatsJack in Florida said...

Jason Marquis has been an absolute bust from the moment we signed him, Mike Rizzo needs to own up to the mistake and move on.

Everyone of his Spring Training performances was atrocious and every start he's made during the season has been worse. And this all started BEFORE he became a free agent back when Colorado realized he was washed up and did not include him on their play off roster.

Craig Stammen has been a solid rock of consistency compared to Marquis!

Richard said...

This is a Monday after a particularly ugly Sunday loss. I can vent, again. So, here goes. Looks like it's that time of year again: tryout time. Put Morgan on the DL so Gonzo and Maxwell can try leading off. Start Maxwell twice in LA so he can try playing with the big boys; maybe he'll feel better. Try various pitchers -- starting pitchers and bean-balling relievers. Use the DL as a taxi squad. (What's up with all the pitchers on the DL?. Are they actually hurt? Every pitcher has had some kind of injury this year or so the Nats say. But, really, how many Marquises does a GM get?) Try infielders in right field. We don't mind watching them learn a new position at the supposedly highest level of baseball. No urgency replacing an obviously under-performing Nieves. He's part of the family. They've "sold" the vets they had to swap for prospects and now it's tryout time. This after two long, long months when they tortured hopeless (hapless?) Nats' fans like me with the prospect of trading one of their most popular and productive players for yet more prospects without ever explaining what the heck their plans are, e.g., do they want to re-sign Dunn or not, are they having a problem with Dunn's contract demands and don't think they'll be able to afford him? Anyway, winning? That's nice but not a priority. Deja vu all over again.

Ernie said...

Is it tacky to point out that I called the Detwiler-to-DL story when the Nats were still in AZ? It probably is.

Section 222 said...

Hope you're enjoying your break Mark. You deserve it. Ok, can we discuss this statement: "Because of that contract, the Nationals pretty much have no choice but to make Marquis a part of their rotation the rest of this season and into 2011." I hear this over and over from sportswriters and commenters. It's the very definition of conventional wisdom. But I don't really get it. The money is spent. Where is the rule that you have to play someone who is terrible because you are paying him alot of money?

I understand that you can't send him to the minors (out of options and won't accept an assignment), but there has to be a point where you cut bait on a disaster right? I'm not saying it's now -- he still is coming back from an injury and I would want him to get a start or two more. But if he's healthy, at some point he has to produce, or the best move is to DFA him, right? If he's not really healthy, then put him on the disabled list and be done with it for the season. Or maybe do that if he's healthy and put off the day of reckoning. There seems to be a low threshold for the DL these days anyway. (See Detwiler, R and Morgan, N.)

What am I missing here?

Anonymous said...

Marquis is our Oliver Perez?

Mr Baseball said...

It seems everyone keeps stats on everything that happens in baseball. Would someone please let me know the percent of success of the DOUBLE-SWITCHS made by DOUBLE-SWITCH RIGGLEMAN. He even took his genius a step farther yesterday when he pinch hitted, in the middle of a bat, Mench for Bernadina. Great move Mench pops up to end the game. He like a kid with tinker-toys! Why couldn't we have gotten someone like Showalter? I know there is someone out there better than Riggleman. And, we have to watch this guy for the rest of 2010 and 2011. He maybe a MLB Coach but not a MLB Manager. FRANK ROBINSON was the only good Manager we've had since baseball returned to Washington. And, he had lesser talent to work with than the team today. Riggleman's stupid changing of pitchers, is why they are always ineffective or on the DL. Even though they are only pitching one inning or less a day it still effects your arm loosing up everday!!

The players all act like they are happy and content, but I would like to know what the are thinking under their breath.

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