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Did Gonzo just buy some more PT?

Maybe it is time to give Gonzalez a few more games. Alberto Gonzalez went 4-4 with an RBI in Tuesday’s 7-2 win over the first place Atlanta Braves and played a solid overall game to help the Nats snap a five-game skid. Gonzalez is a quality second baseman in the field. He works hard every day in batting practice and fielding drills and that translates

Stammen’s game refined tonight versus Braves

Craig Stammen is back with the Nationals for tonight’s matchup in game two at Turner Field against the first place Atlanta Braves. Stammen talked to me recently about the demotion in early June and what he has concentrated on to get back to the big leagues. “It wasn’t like I was throwing the ball badly. I had really good stuff almost every time I went

Zimmermann to pitch July 3 for P-Nats

Nationals pitcher Jordan Zimmermann continues to rehab with no setbacks in Florida and told me today he is scheduled to pitch for the Potomac Nationals against the Wilmington Blue Rocks, July 3 at Pfitzner Stadium in Woodbridge. Zimmermann threw another simulated game today in Florida that went very well, tossing three innings and 50 pitches. “My velocity on my fastball was very good, I think

Glanville on Strasburg: “He has an aura about him”

Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg makes his fifth start of his career tonight in Atlanta before another nationally televised audience. Strasburg has been close to unstoppable in his first four outings, going 2-1 with a 1.78 ERA, and setting a major league record with 41 strikeouts. It seems that almost every pitcher he has faced in his first 20 days has brought their “A” game and

Detwiler next start pushed back

Harrisburg Senators left-hander Ross Detwiler had his next start pushed back to Thursday against Trenton. Detwiler missed his most recent opportunity to get extra treatment for back spasms but told me he is good to go for Thursday. He has not started since June 18 at Bowie when he went four innings. He expects to go longer in this upcoming start, looking to get extended

A rare off night for Clippard

It is almost amazing to think the Nats would need seven pitchers on Friday night when they led 6-0 after four innings and even 6-3 after seven full. That was the case in a stunning 7-6 loss to the Orioles that has to rank as one of the most disappointing of the season. Four huge fielding errors, two by Cristian Guzman and two in the

Detwiler next start slated for Tuesday at Portland

Lefthander Ross Detwiler told me he is scheduled to make his next start for Harrisburg Tuesday night at the Portland Sea Dogs. Ross is hoping to go 70 to 75 pitches in his 4th start in the minors. Detwiler has started two games for the Sens, going 7.2 innings, allowing 10 hits, one earned run, one walk and two strikeouts. He has a 1.17 ERA

When will the Nats go to a fifth starter?

Nationals reliever Joel Peralta is excited about the opportunity to get to pitch at the Major League level again and certainly seems ready for the challenge. While at Syracuse, Peralta dominated at throwing strikes and getting the first batter he faced out. Peralta got the first man out 20 of the 26 chances at Triple-A. It continued Tuesday night in his first Nats appearance when

Strasburg will be an All-Star for years to come, but maybe not in ‘10

Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg has made a huge impact on the 2010 season in his first three starts for Washington. He has won two games and given his team a chance to win all three. He has set a major league record for most strikeouts to start a career, surpassing J.R. Richard of the Houston Astros. So, why wouldn’t Strasburg be an All-Star or at

Chambers expects Harper to sign before deadline

Bryce Harper’s college coach, Tim Chambers, the new baseball coach at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, told me today he does not think the negotiations between Scott Boras and the Washington Nationals to sign Bryce will take all summer. Chambers told me it is his opinion that the talks “won’t drag out all summer” and that Harper wants to get started with his professional career

Jacobsen making name for himself close to home

This Potomac Nationals third baseman wears #11, and his dad is a General in the United States Air Force, but 25-year-old Robby Jacobsen is making a name for himself in Woodbridge with his outstanding play. Jacobsen is truly a homegrown talent. The 6’1”, 205-pounder was drafted by the Nats in 2006 and went to school, played baseball and is now an offseason volunteer coach at

Detwiler shows more improvement, wants to refine curve

Harrisburg Senators left-handed starter Ross Detwiler had another positive start as he continues rehab from a right hip injury. But he told me there is still some work he wants to improve on. Detwiler went 4 innings, scattering six hits, allowing no earned runs, 1 walk and two strikeouts against Bowie Friday night. He has a 1.17 ERA through two starts, 8 strikeouts, 10 hits

Riggleman will not tinker with lineup

Despite the current five-game losing streak in which the team has managed just 11 runs, including only a single run scored in the past 19 innings, Nats manager Jim Riggleman does not think shaking up the lineup is the solution to recent offensive woes. “I have played around there with Nyjer (Morgan) in the 1 and 2, (Cristian) Guzman in the 1 and 2, (Ryan)

Stammen happy to get so close to a no-no

Syracuse Chiefs starter Craig Stammen is still remembering what could have been Friday night when he came within one out and two strikes of a no-hitter. Stammen beat the Gwinnett Braves 5-0 in a seven-inning game, allowing only a two-out base hit to Josh Anderson. “He was terrific. He got groundball outs like we have seen before and was in total control,” said Chiefs play-by-play

J.D. Martin plans to mix it up today vs. Pale Hose

Nationals starter J.D. Martin (0-2, 4.19) given the task today to snap the team’s 4-game losing skid fresh off one of his toughest outings of the season. Martin went 7 and 2/3rds at Cleveland last Saturday night, but got roughed up in the second inning, allowing four runs off five hits, including a two-run double by Carlos Santana. “When I get in trouble in games

Strasburg adds to record book, but Nats fall in extras

Despite Chicago’s 2-1 win over the Nationals in 11 innings, Stephen Strasburg continues to make his changes to the record books. Strasburg surpassed former Houston Astros pitcher J.R. Richard for most strikeouts in his first three games in the big leagues when he struck out Alexei Ramirez in the fifth inning. Richard’s record was 29 in 1971. It was Strasburg’s 30th strikeout in a span

Zimmermann hopes to rehab in Potomac early July

Nationals righthander Jordan Zimmermann pitched off the mound Friday at Nationals Park, going two innings and 35 pitches as he continues recovery from Tommy John surgery conducted last year. “It was definitely nice to get out of Florida. The heat was killing me. It felt good to get back on the mound and be in this atmosphere again is nice.” Jordan used his entire repertoire

Zimmermann sighting at Nats Park

Nats pitcher Jordan Zimmermann threw off the mound today before batting practice in his first appearance at Nats Park in quite some time. Zimmermann is recovering nicely from Tommy John surgery and is ahead of schedule for his return. He pitched a couple of dozen pitches to Nats hitters. It looked as if he was throwing at full strength with no problems. More later...

Strasburg mania reaches well outside 202

With Stephen Strasburg preparing for his third major league start tonight at Nationals Park, it is not lost on anyone outside the D.C. metro area that Strasburg mania is reaching all over the baseball world and into other sports. Kentucky guard and soon-to-be-No. 1 selection in the NBA draft, John Wall, noticed Strasburg in his visit to Washington. “I saw the debut of Strasburg; it

Wilkie closer to Nats call

Syracuse Chiefs right-hander Josh Wilkie gets another rare start tonight against Gwinnett in Georgia. He has been very impressive for the Chiefs this season. In 23 games, the George Washington University product has a 2-3 record with a 1.95 ERA, 29 strikeouts and only 11 walks, with just 7 earned runs allowed. More amazing for the 6-2, 190 pound rightie is he hasn’t allowed an

P-Nats’ Bronson makes steady progress

Potomac Nationals left handed pitcher Evan Bronson is coming off one of his best starts of the year Thursday against Lynchburg. Bronson went 5.1 innings, scattering five hits, allowing no runs, no walks and striking out three batters. 23-year old Bronson is a 6-3 195-pound lefthander out of Trinity College was selected in the 29th round of the 2009 draft. Last season, Bronson was 3-0

Rizzo “optimistic” a deal will be made with Bryce Harper

In Cleveland, I got the opportunity to speak with Nationals General Manager Mike Rizzo regarding this year’s #1 first-year player selection, catcher/outfielder Bryce Harper. Mike, having worked with agent Scott Boras while signing Stephen Strasburg last season, does that give you a leg up in the negotiations with Bryce Harper this year? “Each case with each individual and each representative is unique. We are not

Despite mound issues, Strasburg shines again; 5.1 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 8 K

Stephen Strasburg had to face adversity of a different kind Sunday and pulled through with his second professional victory. Strasburg had trouble with his landing foot on the mound at Progressive Field, the same spot where Indians starter David Huff (2-8) was also landing, Over time, and according to the grounds crew I spoke to, it happens more often during day games because of the

Carmona befuddles Nats 7-1

Fausto Carmona dominated the Nationals Saturday with his power sinker and won for the first time in exactly one month, a complete game three-hitter, 7-1 at Progressive Field. It was his second complete game in his past three starts. Willie Harris says Carmona had the sinker and changeup working to perfection. How dominant? The Nationals left no men on base. Carmona faced only one batter

Strasburg II: Cleveland expects close to 30K

The Indians media relations report they have sold more than 10,000 tickets than usual for Sunday’s series finale with Nats rookie pitcher Stephen Strasburg taking on David Huff. The Tribe are expecting 28,000 to 30,000 for Sunday’s game at Progressive Field, which would almost double their normal gate. Indians are averaging a little over 15,000 per game at home. There also has been an additional

Another Kennedy error early against the Tribe

Cleveland, OH -- Nats 2B Adam Kennedy made a bad throw to second base and Cristian Guzman in the bottom of the 1st inning for his 2nd error of the series and 8th error of the season in 58 games. The Indians scored a batter later on a sacrifice fly to take the lead 1-0 in the 1st. Jim Riggleman had said before the game

Kearns’ payback - Indians drop Nats 7-2

The Indians beat the Nationals 7-2 Friday night at Progressive Field behind a dramatic 2 home run 4 RBI performance by their former teammate. Austin Kearns blasted a 3-run shot in the 1st inning that quickly erased an early Nats lead. Then in his second at-bat, Kearns lauched another Luis Atilano (5-3) pitch over the left center field wall for a 4-1 Tribe advantage. Jake

Kearns stings former team early on with 2 HRs

Former Nationals outfielder Austin Kearns is getting some early revenge against his old mates. Kearns smacked a 3-run HR off of Luis Atilano in the 1st inning, giving the Tribe a 3-1 advantage. Then, in the 4th inning, Kearns got a hold of another one, a solo shot to deep left center and the Indians led 4-1. It was home run #s 6 and 7

Riggleman puts Pudge in the 2 hole vs. Indians

Cleveland, OH -- Nats manager Jim Riggleman puts Ivan Rodriguez in the 2 hole for Game 1 vs. Cleveland. Riggleman said he wanted the 9, 1 and 2 spots to be mixed up a little bit and not all left handed hitters. Riggs also said they thought about putting Rodriguez in the 2 hole as early as spring training. He also said they can hit

Burnett’s effort helps bullpen rest, finish off Bucs

Nats pitcher Sean Burnett was thrilled to get a shot at his former team and help the Nats sweep the Bucs 4-2. Burnett allowed a couple of hits, but struck out Jason Jamarillo and bridged the gap from the sixth to the ninth inning, allowing Tyler Clippard to come on in the ninth for his first save of his major league career. “Yeah, its always

Detwiler looks good in Woodbridge, ready for Sens

A solid start for Ross Detwiler in Woodbridge Wednesday night. The southpaw pitched three innings, scattered four hits, allowed no runs, walked one and struck two on 40 pitches with 28 for strikes. Ross did not factor into the decision as Frederick beat the Potomac Nationals 4-3. His fastball was clocked between 88 and 92 miles per hour, change at 81 MPH and curveball at

Lannan on getting ready, Strasburg and Bryce

Nationals left-hander John Lannan gets the call tonight in Game 2 against the Pirates. I caught up with Lannan as he prepared his game plan for Pittsburgh and asked him how he prepares for each game. “I like to go out there and know what I am going to do beforehand. That is why I like to do scouting reports. I like to use the

Big bats save Strasburg debut

The storybook ending that was almost all for naught. The Pirates had a good shot of ruining the Stephen Strasburg party before it got started, even with an outstanding pitching performance by the much hyped top selection from San Diego State. Pittsburgh led 2-1 heading into the bottom of the sixth inning of a soldout game at a rocking Nats Park. Strasburg had pitched very

Lannan on Strasburg and what a major league debut feels like

Nats starting pitcher John Lannan remembers his major league debut in Philadelphia in 2007. He admits he was a little nervous in part from all the waiting around for the game to start. Lannan knows how Stephen Strasburg felt in his first major league start. “It was the anticipation that got to me a little bit, you know, the sitting around. Got there pretty early,

Watch out for Strasburg in 2011

So how will Stephen Strasburg do in his first major league start tonight at sold out Nats Park? Should we expect a win, 15 strikeouts and only one earned run? Will he struggle against major league hitters and lose? Jim Callis of Baseball America says let’s not put too much pressure on the rookie, but he does give his prediction for what might happen with

Callis: Harper “best power prospect I have ever seen”

Nationals selection of Bryce Harper as the top pick in the amateur draft could be one for the ages. In Bryce’s only season at the junior college level, he set almost every major school record at the College of Southern Nevada, batting .443, including 31 homers and 98 RBI. The Coyotes hit 17 homers AS A TEAM in 2009. How good will Bryce Harper be

Bryce Harper’s coach Tim Chambers live Monday

Join me tomorrow as we talk with Bryce Harper’s college coach Tim Chambers as the Nats prepare to take Harper with the No. 1 overall pick in the draft. Also joining me will be Nationals relief pitcher Drew Storen, Baseball America’s Jim Callis talking Harper and Stephen Strasburg; we’ll have Mike Rizzo’s comments on what the Nats are looking for after Harper; and stay tuned

Detwiler rehab start Wednesday at Potomac

The Nationals have scheduled Ross Detwiler for a rehabilitation start for Potomac Wednesday night against the Frederick Keys at Pfitzner Stadium. Detwiler, who has been recovering from a hip injury, is schedule to make one start in Potomac Wednesday and then on to Harrisburg. It has not been decided how many starts he will get with the Senators. Manager Jim Riggleman is pleased with

Rizzo: “We have made our decision” on first pick

Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo met with the media before Sunday’s game against the Reds and did not confirm the team will select Bryce Harper with the number one overall selection in Monday’s First-Year Player Draft. But it was pretty obvious they have been confident in their selection for quite some time and there is little suspense in who they will draft 1.1. “We have

Stammen determined to get through first inning

Nationals wrap up series with Reds Sunday at 1:35 p.m. from Nationals Park. RHP Craig Stammen (1-2, 5.88) faces Cincinnati RHP Bronson Arroyo (5-3, 4.92). Stammen has had a tough time in the early innings in his recent starts and has been hit hard with at least nine hits allowed in two of his last three games. He also has had some control issues with

Get to Nats Park early Tuesday

The Nationals are advising fans to arrive early for Tuesday’s major league debut of #1 selection Stephen Strasburg versus the Pittsburgh Pirates. Gates and the Miller Lite Scoreboard Walk open at 4:30 p.m. Fans are also urged to pick up their tickets for Tuesdays game early. Will Call windows are open Sunday at 9 a.m. until 30 minutes after the game, Monday, 10 a.m. to

Clippard then Storen still works, then Capps it off

Manager Jim Riggleman decided to go with Tyler Clippard in the seventh inning and then Drew Storen in the eighth of the Nationals 4-2 losing streak ending win over the hot Cincinnati Reds at Nationals Park. Similar to Cristian Guzman leading off and Nyjer Morgan batting second, this change paid dividends for the Nats quickly. Riggleman said he thought he might use Clippard for two

Hagerstown’s Smoker has promising outing

The 21-year-old left-hander Josh Smoker did well for Hagerstown on Wednesday, pitching five scoreless innings and allowing only four hits while striking out three and walking three. Smoker induced eight flyouts of the 19 Lakewood batters he faced. The Blue Claws won the game 5-3 over the Suns, but it was a step in the right direction for Smoker. Hagerstown manager Matt LeCroy says Josh

Lannan battles, but offense sputters in 5-1 setback

The Nationals had a chance for a .500 road trip with two wins in the final two games of the series in Houston. They had to feel pretty good as well, with John Lannan on the hill to take care of that first game. Houston had their own ideas with Wandy Rodriguez (3-7) pitching five solid innings and a bullpen that held its ground, add

Hagerstown’s Rosenbaum settles in after rough start

HAGERSTOWN, Md. -- Lakewood BlueClaws jumped on Hagerstown lefthander Daniel Rosenbaum early, scoring three runs off four hits in the opening frame of the Lakewood 3-0 win over the Suns at Hagerstown Municipal Stadium Tuesday. After that rough first inning, Rosenbaum settled in and retired 11 of the next 13 Lakewood hitters. He finished with 5 innings, 6 hits, 3 runs, 1 walk and 4

Bryce Harper lone freshman semifinalist for Golden Spikes Award

USA Baseball announced Tuesday the names of the 30 semifinalists for the 2010 USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award (GSA). This year will mark the 33rd consecutive year that the award has been presented to the nation’s top amateur baseball player. College of Southern Nevada catcher Bryce Harper was the lone freshman semifinalist, joining 29 other Division I nominees. Harper has hit 29 homers and 89

P-Nats Derek Norris back in lineup; Peacock update

Potomac Nationals catcher Derek Norris back behind the plate tonight for the P-Nats. Norris was hit in the head by a 95 mile per hour fastball 11 days ago and was cleared to play tonight. Norris told me last week that the helmet saved him from serious injury. Similar to Norris, teammate and catcher Brian Peacock is recovering from also getting hit in the batting

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