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Morris will skip start, but showing great promise

Potomac Nationals pitcher A.J. Morris has recovered from getting hit by a line drive and pitched well in late July. Now, the talented young hurler will skip a start because of a high inning count. Morris has been placed on the seven-day disabled list. Morris was supposed to start tonight but will be replaced by Adrian Alaniz in the rotation. In three starts since July

Give Leatherman time to shine in Syracuse

Nationals right-handed reliever Dan Leatherman made the rare two-level promotion from Potomac to Syracuse last week and got hit a little bit. But with the resume he had put together in Woodbridge, you really have to give the 25-year-old Frederick, MD native more than just two games at Triple-A to show the pitching prowess that was closing out games for nearly two seasons in the

Tyler Moore locked in for Potomac

Many question the depth the Washington Nationals have in their minor league system for field players. Names such as Chris Marrero, Danny Espinosa and Michael Burgess are usually mentioned. It might be time to add first baseman Tyler Moore to that list. The 2008 draftee out of Mississippi State has been scorching it at the plate. As one coach told me, Moore is “locked in

Detwiler ready for another shot

Nationals left-hander Ross Detwiler gets the start today in the final game of the series against the Milwaukee Brewers. Detwiler pitched seven scoreless innings Wednesday afternoon for the Harrisburg Senators. Detwiler thinks it will actually help him having only four days rest. “I think it will be better. It is close to my bullpen day so I think I will be better because my location

Balester thrilled to be back, even for just one day

Right-handed pitcher Collin Balester got the call back to the big leagues this weekend - for one game tonight. He joined the Nationals in Milwaukee Saturday. The 24-year-old Balester has made the transition this season from starter to reliever and he told me he has embraced the change completely. “It is all about attitude coming out of the bullpen. You have to let it all

More than just an outfielder, Harris is a teacher

Nationals outfielder Willie Harris doesn’t play as much as he would like. But he doesn’t sulk when he is not in the game. He gets up and helps coach young outfielders like Roger Bernandina. During a game last week in Cincinnati, Harris directed Bernadina where to stand off of first base and how much of a lead he needed to try to get to second

Livan gives bullpen needed rest, 7-1 over Reds

CINCINNATI, Oh. --- The Nationals took their second straight over Cincinnati, 7-1, behind a complete game seven-hitter from workhorse Livan Hernandez (7-6) and a suddenly potent offense. After scoring just six runs in their first four games out of the break, the Nats have exploded for 22 runs in the last 27 innings. Hernandez allowed just a single run, an RBI groundout by Ramon Hernandez

Atilano to DL with “floating chips” in elbow

Nationals starter Luis Atilano has floating chips in his injured right elbow and will be placed on the disabled list, effective today. He will miss at least two starts, according to general manager Mike Rizzo. Atilano will get a cortisone shot when he returns to Washington. Rizzo said they have decided on the pitcher who will start Sunday, but will not make that announcement just

Strasburg gives it to Reds and heckling fan, 8-5 Nats

The Nationals got on the board in the series with the Reds, 8-5, thanks to another solid performance by Stephen Strasburg and a big sixth inning by the offense for the second game in a row. Strasburg went 5 and 2/3rds innings allowing three runs on seven hits, walking one and striking out seven batters. All you need to know about the fire of the

Strasburg on target when the lights turn on

Fresh off his 22nd birthday, Nationals right-handed pitcher Stephen Strasburg gets the call tonight against the Reds Bronson Arroyo. With the win last Friday night in Miami, Strasburg is now the last Nats starter to post a win. He has won his last two decisions for Washington. It seems he has been counted on to stop losing streaks for the Nats in almost every outing

Morse: “we never gave up” in 8-7 loss to Reds

CINCINNATI, Oh. --- It would have been very easy for the Nats to give up in this one. Fresh off a long two and a half hour rain delay, Washington allowed three more runs and suddenly found themselves down 8-1 to the Reds in the fifth inning. Cincinnati ended up winning 8-7 but not without a battle to the end. A six run comeback in

Report: Nats agree to terms with top Cuban pitcher

CINCINNATI, Oh. --- ESPNdeportes.com reports the Nationals have agreed to terms with Cuban right handed pitcher Yunesky Maya. Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo would not confirm or deny the report but spoke in general terms about scouting Maya for some time. “He is a terrific, young and poised major league caliber pitcher. He was the number one pitcher on the Cuban National team, even ahead

Chico’s consistency can’t be ignored

Syracuse Chiefs pitcher Matt Chico has not allowed a run in two consecutive starts, a span of 14 innings in a pair of home-and-away matchups against Pawtucket. The numbers are impressive in those last two starts: 14.0 IP, 6 hits, 0 runs, 2 walks, 7 strikeouts. His shutout streak is currently 14 innings. Chico (4-3, 3.00) says the key to his recent success has been

Martin’s walks and sloppy play doom Nats

CINCINNATI, OH. --- Right fielder Willie Harris was a picture of frustration in the clubhouse after the Reds slammed the door on the Nationals 7-2 in the series opener at Great American Ball Park. Harris had one arm leaning against his locker as he recounted the second inning where the Reds scored four times. It held up because Johnny Cueto was on target, allowing only

Strasburg named baseball’s 4th most marketable player

It is readily apparent to the Nationals and their fans the immediate impact pitcher Stephen Strasburg has had on the team since he made his major league debut June 8. What is more amazing is the soon-to-be 22-year-old’s potential impact on corporate America. In today’s Sports Business Daily, Strasburg is already ranked as the number four most marketable baseball player after only eight big league

Zimmermann sees paved road back to Nats

Nationals pitcher Jordan Zimmermann has made very good progress in three rehab starts for the Potomac Nationals as he embarks on another start tonight in Woodbridge. Zimmermann is expected to pitch four innings with a pitch count capped at 65. He has been outstanding in his control and velocity. His fastball has been consistently in the mid-90s (once hitting 96 mph in hot and muggy

The view from Cincinnati

CINCINNATI, Oh. --- The Nationals arrived here in Cincinnati getting ready to face a Reds team that is feeling a little desperate themselves after falling 1-0 to the Rockies in their series finale Sunday at the Great American Ball Park. Both the Nats and the Reds lost their respective series finales, 1-0. Of course, this has been an amazing season for Cincinnati, who were knocked

Lannan allows one earned run, but H’Burg falls

Nationals pitcher John Lannan struggled in the fifth inning of the Harrisburg Senators’ 18-15 loss to the Altoona Curve. Most of the offense occurred after the left-hander exited the game. Lannan allowed just one earned run in 4 2/3 innings, leaving the game leading 4-3. The Curve scored three runs in the fifth inning to tie the game 4-4. The Curve made a dramatic comeback

Detwiler pitches well in loss

Nationals pitcher Ross Detwiler went five innings Friday night and took the loss for Harrisburg in their 3-0 setback versus Altoona. Despite the loss, Detwiler allowed only three hits, two runs (of which only one was earned), one walk and had a season high seven strikeouts. Detwiler said the start went well but he had some bad luck. He told me his mechanics were a

Strasburg leans on Livan for advice

It is pretty obvious the Nationals want to make a statement right out of the blocks to begin the mythical second half of the season by going to their best pitcher the last month and ten days, Stephen Strasburg (3-2, 2.32) tonight against Florida’s Ricky Nolasco (9-6, 4.55). How long have Nats fans waited to have an answer for Josh Johnson or Nolasco, who they

Zimmermann staying patient in rehab from Tommy John

WOODBRIDGE, Va. -- The day following his third rehab start for Potomac, Nationals pitcher Jordan Zimmermann says he was most pleased with how well his changeup was working Wednesday against Kinston. Jordan went four innings, scattering six hits, allowing one unearned run, no walks and striking out four. Jordan threw 53 pitches, 40 for strikes. “I thought it went pretty well. I threw a lot

Lannan spotting the ball more consistently

Nationals pitcher John Lannan had his best start of the four outings so far at Harrisburg July 10 against the Reading Phillies. Lannan went six innings and allowed five hits and two runs, while striking out six batters and walking only one. Pitching coach Randy Tomlin says Lannan is gaining his confidence back with each start. “John did very well in his last outing. He

Zimmermann solid in third start for Potomac

Nationals pitcher Jordan Zimmermann took another step forward with a positive rehab start for Potomac Wednesday night. Zimmermann tossed four innings, scattering six hits, allowed one unearned run, no walks and striking out four. Jordan threw 53 pitches, 40 for strikes. Team president Stan Kasten was in attendance to watch Jordan’s start. Kinston won the game 3-1, and Zimmermann got tagged with the loss. He

Zimmermann to focus on changeup tonight

Nationals right-handed pitcher Jordan Zimmermann gets another rehab start tonight in Woodbridge with the Potomac Nationals facing the Kinston Indians at 7:03 p.m.at Pfitzner Stadium. This will be the 24-year-old Zimmermann’s third rehab start and he is expecting to go four innings with a cap of 60-65 pitches. Zimmermann has worked this week primarily on his changeup. Pitching coach Paul Menhart told me he would

Bryce Harper wins 2010 Golden Spikes Award

Nationals number one overall selection Bryce Harper has won the 2010 Golden Spikes Award, which honors the nation’s top amateur baseball player. The announcement was made by USA Baseball during a presentation at All-Star FanFest today in Anaheim, California. The catcher/outfielder beat out semifinalists Chris Duffy, Yasmani Grandal, Drew Pomeranz and Chris Sale to win the honor and to match Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg,

Detwiler looking to smooth out mechanics

Harrisburg Senators left-hander Ross Detwiler notched his first win of the season Sunday with a 7-3 decision at the Reading Phillies. Detwiler went five innings, allowed seven hits, two runs, one homer, one walk and three strikeouts. He had a dramatic three-run double to seal the game for the offense but said he just caught a break on the hit. “It was my third or

Clippard trying to fight through “mental wall”

Nationals reliever Tyler Clippard met with the media before Sunday’s game against the Giants after allowing four runs on two hits, one a home run, two walks and just one strikeout in 1/3 of an inning in Saturday’s loss. It was his third setback in the last ten games in which his ERA has exploded to 11.00. “I think the bottom line is I am

Riggleman on second half and player updates

The Nationals are getting ready for the second half of the season with 73 games remaining on the schedule. The team can still make a move in the National League East, unlike last year when they reached the All-Star break 22 1/2 games out of first place and had already lost 61 games. Manager Jim Riggleman is confident the clubhouse is filled with the players

Zimmermann next start Wednesday vs. Kinston

Nationals pitcher Jordan Zimmermann says he will pitch Wednesday, July 14 in his third rehab start against the Kinston Indians at Pfitzner Stadium in Woodbridge. Zimmermann is expected to go four inning and 65 pitches. He was outstanding in his second start Thursday in Frederick, hitting 96 miles per hour on the fastball, striking out five over three innings, allowing a 1st inning double as

Hernandez confident Nats on the verge

Nationals starter Livan Hernandez faces his former team in the first half finale as the Nats wrap up a 10-game home stand versus Madison Bumgarner and the San Francisco Giants. Hernandez is (6-4, 3.12) in 17 starts and has been the Nats most durable pitcher since opening day, hurling 112 and 2/3rds innings. The Giants 2002 opening day starter was impressive in his last few

Two outs at third base ended Nats chances for insurance

The Nats offense connected early against Jonathan Sanchez, scoring five runs and sending the Giants starter to the showers in the fourth inning. With a 5-3 lead, the Nats had to like their chances with a normally reliable bullpen waiting for the opportunity to go. But in the fifth and sixth frames, the Nats had opportunities to add to their lead, but were unable to

Morgan, Bernie catalysts to get offense rolling at home

The Nationals have now won five of their first eight games in this 10-game homestand, taking down Matt Cain and the San Francisco Giants 8-1 Friday night at Nationals Park. The Nats did it behind the arm of Stephen Strasburg, but it was also the offense that has ignited this recent spark in D.C. The Nationals are 25-19 at home and are one win away

Strasburg, Zimmermann could dominate for years to come

As I sat there watching Jordan Zimmermann dominate Frederick with his fastball hitting 94, 95 and 96 miles per hour Thursday, I wondered how strong the Nationals pitching staff will be with today’s starter Stephen Strasburg and Jordan Zimmermann as the one-two punch for 2011 and beyond? It’s similar to the core that Ryan Zimmerman wants to keep intact at 3-4-5 in the hitting order.

Zimmermann dominates second rehab start, hits 96 MPH

FREDERICK, Md. -- Nationals right-hander Jordan Zimmermann dominated his second rehab start following recovery from Tommy John surgery. Zimmermann went the scheduled three innings Thursday afternoon against the Frederick Keys in the sweltering heat at Harry Grove Stadium before 3,824. Potomac defeated Frederick 7-4. Jordan allowed just one hit, no runs, no walks and struck out five Keys batters, including the side in the first

Zimmermann Bottom of the 3rd

Zimmermann bottom of the 3rd Potomac at Frederick Britton, P. 3U Avery K Hudson 5-3 POT 5, FRED 0. END 3RD Michael Burgess 3-run HR top 3rd for PNats IP 3 R 0 ER 0 H 1 BB 0 K 5 PITCHES 49 STRIKES 34

Zimmermann Bottom of the 2nd

Julius F7 Hoes HP Britton, B. 3-1 Stevens K POT 2, FRED 0. END 2ND IP 2 R 0 ER 0 H 1 BB 0 K 4 37 PITCHES 26 STRIKES

Zimmermann Bottom of 1st; strikes out the side

Jordan Zimmermann Btm of 1st Avery K Hudson double off SS Welty K Mahoney K 18 pitches 13 strikes IP 1 R 0 ER 0 H 1 BB 0 K 3 AFTER 1 POTOMAC 2, FREDERICK 0.

Zimmermann 2nd rehab start underway in Frederick

FREDERICK, Md. -- Jordan Zimmermann expected to go 3 innings today here in a hot and steamy Harry Grove Stadium on Kids day at the ball park. Zimmermann went 2 innings last Saturday in Potomac, allowing two hits and no runs.

Zimmerman wants Dunn to stay put

With home run after home run by Adam Dunn splashing down over the outfield walls of Nationals Park, the joke on the chat line was a pretend phone call placed to Mike Rizzo that said “Kenny Williams is on line One!” A reference to a rumor that the Chicago White Sox general manager has a strong interest in acquiring Dunn. The Nationals’ home run display

Maxwell figures out way to prosper in Syracuse

Syracuse Chiefs and former University of Maryland center fielder Justin Maxwell has been on a tear hitting the ball well at the Triple-A level. Last week, during a 7-game span, Maxwell went 8 for 27 (.296) with two doubles, two homers, three RBI and five runs scored. With 53 hits, he is averaging a hit per game for Syracuse. He is batting .282 with 5

Zimmermann set for 2nd rehab start Thursday in Frederick

Nationals starter Jordan Zimmermann gets his second rehab start of the summer for the Potomac Nationals at the Frederick Keys Thursday afternoon at 12 noon from Harry Grove Stadium. Zimmermann is expecting to pitch three innings as he makes gradual steps to returning to the majors since Tommy John surgery repaired his right elbow in August of last season. He hurled two scoreless innings Saturday

Martin still looking for elusive first win of 2010

Game two tonight features Nationals right-hander J.D. Martin searching for his initial win of 2010 against right-hander Jon Garland of the San Diego Padres (8-5, 3.24). It is Martin’s seventh start of the season, and he is looking for his first win since September 18, 2009 against the Mets in New York. Despite his last loss in Atlanta, Martin will not change his strategy to

Ian Desmond: The Good, the Bad and the Tremendous

Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond was bounding through the clubhouse pregame with a skip in his step and a smile on his face, ready to go for the first game of the series against the San Diego Padres. That boundless energy and enthusiasm is all a part of the full package you get from Desmond. It is what the Nationals loved about Desmond last year and

Nats hope to be California dreamin’ by Sunday

The Nationals have six games remaining before the All-Star break against the N.L. West’s first-place San Diego Padres and the San Francisco Giants. The Padres roll into town with the best ERA in the National League (3.05) and yet do not have a single pitcher on the N.L. roster for the All-Star game in Anaheim. They also lead the league in shutouts (12), innings pitched

Chico: “Most confidence I have felt in four years”

Chiefs left-hander Matt Chico (3-4, 4.24) looking to bounce back from one of the rougher outings of his season tonight for Syracuse as they play host to Buffalo. He will get a chance to face the same Buffalo lineup that tagged him for a season-high six runs last week. The loss was a reversal from the previous two starts, both wins, where Chico allowed only

Stammen looks to repeat last start today against Mets

Nationals starter Craig Stammen is searching for two wins in a row today as he faces the New York Mets in the series finale on the Fourth of July at Nats Park. Stammen (2-2) had a tremendous return to the hill Tuesday in Atlanta, going 7 1/3 innings, allowing five hits, two runs, two walks and striking out four batters. He also allowed only three

Zimmermann strong in first rehab start

WOODBRIDGE, Va. -- Nationals righthander Jordan Zimmermann looked strong in his first rehab start for the Potomac Nationals since Tommy John surgery 318 days ago before a packed house at Pfitzner Stadium in Woodbridge, Virginia. Zimmermann donned the home white jersey with the dark blue and red trimmed numerals and the #29 instead his usual #27. He threw 25 pitches, 16 for strikes in two

All eyes in San Diego watching Strasburg; Live on FOX 4:10pm

Just because Nationals starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg has switched oceans, that does not prevent fans of his native San Diego from keeping up with the young pitching phenom. Today, Strasburg makes his sixth big league start, first time against the New York Mets, once again before a nationally televised audience. (Programming Note: The game has been selected to be televised by Fox, as part of

Atilano’s fourth a game changer

Nationals starter Luis Atilano got to the fourth inning Friday pretty much unscathed. He allowed a first inning hit batter and then a single. A ground out by Ike Davis scored the Mets first run and they led 1-0. But in the fourth, trouble brewed as the first three men got on base. David Wright led off the inning with a double and Atilano struggled

Harris pinch at-bat key to Nats comeback

Nationals utility man Willie Harris has not had that many chances to play after battling out of an 0-for-20 slump last Friday against the Orioles. He was a defensive replacement in just one game in Atlanta and came up Thursday against the Mets as a pinch hitter with one out in the ninth. Harris, who is a free agent at the end of the 2010,

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