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Barrett's solid start is making people take notice

As April winds to a close, Nationals right-hander Aaron Barrett has to be pretty pleased with his first month in the majors. There is still one game to go, but he has been able to post solid numbers. He allowed a run on two hits against the Angels on April 23 and two walks with the bases loaded against the Padres April 27. Overall, Barrett

Minor league updates: Skole, Taylor, Keyes, Solano and Fister news

Center fielder Michael Taylor announced his presence with a three home run game Sunday for Double-A Harrisburg against Bowie. He went 3-for-4 with three home runs and four RBIs, becoming the first Nationals organizational player to his three homers in one game since Danny Espinosa. Taylor is batting .250 with four doubles, five home runs and 18 RBIs in 22 games. He has struck out

McLouth's value rises as Harper goes down to injury

Outfielder Nate McLouth had a nice breakthrough late in Sunday's game when he hit a solo shot, his first homer for the Nationals. McLouth said the homer might be a signal that he is starting to feel good in each at-bat. "I felt good all day," McLouth said. "For the most part, I felt halfway decent at the plate. Just wasn't getting any results. It

Matt Williams on Jordan's fever, Espinosa's knee and his relievers

Right-hander Taylor Jordan made it through four innings Sunday but then was pulled from game. The bullpen was unable to keep the game within reach and the Padres defeated the Nationals 4-2. Manager Matt Williams said Jordan had been feeling under the weather since late last night. "He showed up this morning running a fever," Williams said. "I don't know if it was the flu

Fister pitches four innings in first rehab start for Potomac (updated with Williams, Fister comments)

Nationals right-hander Doug Fister completed his rehab assignment for the high Single-A Potomac Nationals on Sunday. Fister went four innings, as planned, and threw 59 pitches, 42 for strikes. This was Fister's initial rehab start. He is currently on the 15-day disabled list with a right lat strain. Fister told reporters afterward that he had good location and spring training velocity. A source at the

Nationals get to Ian Kennedy and Padres for early lead (Padres win 4-2)

The Nationals jumped on Padres starter Ian Kennedy in the first inning. With one out, Anthony Rendon crushed a double off the top of the right-center field wall. Jayson Werth then rocketed a double deep to left-center field and the Nationals led 1-0. Nationals starter Taylor Jordan allowed a single to Chris Denorfia but got the benefit of a 3-6-3 double play to end the

Difo making noise for Hagerstown after focused offseason training

Low Single-A Hagerstown second baseman Wilmer Difo continues to prove he can hit and get on base. Through 20 games, the 6-foot ,175-lb. Dominican switch-hitter is hitting .315. In 89 at-bats, Difo has 28 hits, 12 runs, seven doubles, two triples, nine stolen bases (caught stealing once) and 15 RBIs. Difo has a .351 on-base percentage for the Suns. Through Thursday, Difo had five multi-hit

Strasburg and Lobaton building chemistry, helping produce success on the hill

Nationals catcher Jose Lobaton said it was difficult to get to know Stephen Strasburg early in the season. But now that they have had three or four games working together, they are slowly building chemistry and trust. That bonding played an important role in Strasburg's seven innings of shutout ball in an 11-1 victory over the Padres on Friday night. "First time, it was kind Continue reading ....

Williams on offense, Desmond and Strasburg in win over Padres

Nationals manager Matt Williams said his team's strategy of working to get as many men on base as ppossible was a key an 11-1 victory over San Diego, even if they struggled with runners in scoring position in their Thursday extra-inning loss. "The theme is the same as it always is," Williams said. "We just try to give ourselves as many opportunities as we can.

Harper leaves game in fifth with jammed left thumb

Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper appeared to jam his left wrist while sliding into third base on a three-run triple in the third inning against the San Diego Padres on Friday night. MASN television replays showed Harper holding his left wrist and flexing his left hand after the play. He stayed in the game for the fourth inning, but was replaced by Nate McLouth in

Nationals deliver early on scoring chances (Nats win 11-1)

The Nationals had 16 chances with runners in scoring position Thursday in the opening game against the Padres and failed each time. On Friday, the Nationals got base hits on their first two RISP opportunities to provide Stephen Strasburg an early cushion against his hometown team. After a 57-minute rain delay, Strasburg allowed a single by Everth Cabrera to lead off the game. But the

Williams on Ramos' recovery: "Structurally, everything is really good"

Nationals manager Matt Williams had an update on catcher Wilson Ramos, who has been on the 15-day disabled list since opening day with a left hamate bone fracture. "Took early BP today, looks good," Williams said. "At this point, it is pain tolerance. Structurally, everything is really good. The bone is removed. The scar is healing. It is not just a skin scar, either -

Transfer play rule adjusted (updated with player reaction)

Nationals first baseman Adam LaRoche got his wish. Major League Baseball announced today that the Playing Rules Committee has adjusted how umpires should apply the official playing rules in plays when a fielder loses possession of a ball attempting to transfer it to this throwing hand. The new interpretation of the transfer play will begin with games tonight. Here is the official announcement of how

Zimmermann felt stuff was good enough to go longer than six innings

The Nationals certainly had opportunities in their 4-3 12-inning loss to the Padres on Thursday. It ended on a hard-hit ball by catcher Jose Lobaton that doubled Bryce Harper off of second base. That play was another example of the many missed scoring chances the Nationals had. "That is the game," Lobaton said. "I was trying to do something better after that error. I was Continue reading ....

Nationals get aggressive to go up on Padres in third (San Diego wins 4-3 in 12)

The Nationals got on the board in the third inning against Padres lefty Eric Stults. Pitcher Jordan Zimmermann got it started with a single past diving shortstop Everth Cabrera and into left field. Denard Span reached on a fielder's choice, erasing Zimmermann at second. Span then stole second and Stults' pickoff throw sailed past the first baseman, allowing Span to go to third. He scored

Lobaton working on keeping swing short

Nationals catcher Jose Lobaton began Wednesday's ninth-inning rally against the Angels with his first home run of the season, a no-doubter down the right field line and into the Nationals bullpen, cutting the Angels lead to 4-2. The Nationals were able to score three more runs and come back to win 5-4. Lobaton connected on a 0-2 count after starting the night 0-for-3 at the

Williams updates Gonzalez, Fister and Hairston

Nationals manager Matt Williams updated the recovery of starting right-hander Doug Fister, who is on the 15-day disabled list with a right lat strain. Williams said Fister threw 40 pitches in a bullpen session Thursday and "felt good." This means that Fister is on track to make a rehab start Sunday for high Single-A Potomac on Sunday in Woodbridge, Va. The plan is for Fister

Werth and LaRoche recount Nationals' wild ninth-inning rally against Angels

Something about these Nationals, they know how to mount a comeback. A lot has not gone their way this season, from injuries to sloppy defense to inconsistent early innings for the pitchers. But Wednesday reminded baseball that this team never stops fighting. Down 4-1 heading into their last at-bat, the Nationals rallied for four runs and shocked the Angels 5-4. The inning got its start

Gonzalez's bat gives Nats first run against Angels (Nats rally to win 5-4)

Nationals starter Gio Gonzalez got himself out of a pair of jams early and then contributed with his bat to get his team the early advantage. In the first inning with one away, the Angels got a double from Mike Trout and a single from Albert Pujols. Howie Kendrick walked to load the bases. Gonzalez then got Erick Aybar to ground into an inning-ending double

Williams said starting infield requested more pregame defensive practice

Something has got to change. If the Nationals have any aspirations of winning the National League East or making an appearance in the postseason, they must play better defense. That means cleaner innings. That means making the play you are supposed to make and not trying to do too much. Shortstop Ian Desmond has had too many errors to begin this season. He would be

Pujols and Nationals react to historic 500th home run

Angels first baseman Albert Pujols crushed a pair of home runs to reach 500 for his career in a 7-2 win over the Nationals on Tuesday night. Pujols hit both home runs off Nationals starter Taylor Jordan. "It was a really good swing, a fastball middle up and obviously, probably the best swing I have taken this year so far," Pujols said. "It came at

Pujols hits his 500th career home run, Nats fall 7-2

The first inning did not start off well for the Nationals and Taylor Jordan. And again, the defense added to the early deficit. Jordan allowed a double to J.B. Shuck to lead off the game. Mike Trout reached on a throwing error by third baseman Anthony Rendon. With two men on, Albert Pujols stepped to the plate. On a 1-1 pitch, Pujols launched a mammoth

Williams offers updates on Fister, Storen; Barrett returns to majors

Manager Matt Williams reported that right-hander Doug Fister had another quality simulated game in Florida and could be 15 days away from making his first start for the Nationals. Fister went three innings and tossed 44 pitches. "He felt good with everything," Williams said. "Lots of grounders and reported he felt really good with it. The next step for him is work out down there

Roark did his job Monday, left with the lead

Right-hander Tanner Roark did everything he could possibly do to keep the Nationals in the game and continue his home dominance. Roark went 6 2/3 innings and scattered seven hits, allowing no runs with two walks, one intentional, and five strikeouts. He was a workhorse with 105 pitches, 63 for strikes. There is something about Roark at Nationals Park. He has allowed one earned run

Desmond and Clippard on what went wrong in the eighth inning

Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond committed two errors in the Angels' decisive four-run rally in the eighth inning, leading to a 4-2 loss Monday night. Desmond's first error occurred when he bobbled a grounder near the bag at second which allowed Albert Pujols to reach base. With two outs, pinch-hitter Raul Ibanez slapped a game-changing three-run double, and Desmond picked up another error on an errant

Starting pitchers controlling game early (Angels win 4-2)

The Nationals' Tanner Roark struck out three of the first four batters he faced in tonight's opening game of their three-game set with the Los Angeles Angels. The Angels got a pair of hits in the second and a walk, but Roark worked out of that with a strikeout of Angels starter Garrett Richards to end the inning. In the third, J.B. Shuck was originally

Harper and Trout understand hyped matchup, but focus is on winning

With the arrival of the Los Angeles Angels in D.C. comes the much anticipated matchup between 22-year-old Mike Trout and 21-year-old Bryce Harper. Trout was the 25th overall selection in 2009, while Harper arrived as the first overall pick in 2010. They have been linked because they are both considered power-hitting phenoms and are the faces of the next batch of young superstars to play

McLouth walk a key at-bat in walk-off winner for Nationals

Outfielder Nate McLouth came up in the bottom of the ninth with two men on and one out against Cardinals reliever Seth Maness on Sunday. The Cardinals and Nationals were tied at 2-2. He played a key role in the series, salvaging a 3-2 walk-off winner for D.C. Maness started with three straight sinkers against McLouth, hoping to get him to bite. But McLouth hung

Span, Strasburg, Harper and Werth react after walk-off win over Cardinals

The Nationals' comeback to beat the Cardinals 3-2 on a Denard Span sacrifice fly in the ninth gave them their sixth come-from-behind win this season. They split the four-game set with St. Louis, improving to 5-1 in series finales. The Nats left 17 men on base, but managed to come away with the victory. Span spoke about his at-bat against right-hander Seth Maness in the

Cardinals get to Nats in second inning again (Nats walk off with 3-2 win)

The Cardinals' hottest hitter connected with a big hit to start the second inning against Nationals right-hander Stephen Strasburg to open the scoring. Matt Adams' double led off the second frame, and was followed by a Yadier Molina single. Strasburg got back in the inning by getting Jhonny Peralta to ground into a double play, but Adams scored from third to give the Cardinals a

Harper, teammates react to Williams' decision to pull him from game

A somber Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper reacted to manager Matt Williams' decision to take him out of the game for not running to first base on a grounder back to the pitcher. "I respect what he did and it is part of the game," Harper said after the Nats' 4-3 loss to the Cardinals. Harper led off the sixth inning with a comebacker to

Early throwing error opens door for Cardinals rally (Nats fall 4-3)

An early fielding mistake hurt the Nationals again. In the top of the second with one out, Allen Craig walked. Jhonny Peralta grounded to third base and Anthony Rendon attempted to get Craig at second and start a double play. But his throw to second baseman Danny Espinosa was offline and both runners were safe. Rendon was charged with his first error of the season.

Span says "it feels good" to be back, returns to lineup after concussion

Nationals center fielder Denard Span returns to the lineup today against the St. Louis Cardinals. He was activated off the seven-day disabled list after suffering a concussion in a game against the Atlanta Braves on April 11. Span played two rehab games for low Single-A Hagerstown and suffered no setbacks. "It feels good," Span said. "A couple of days in Hagerstown definitely gets my appreciation

Hearing from Rendon, Storen, Desmond and Gonzalez after win over Cardinals

Several Nationals played key roles in Friday's 3-1 win over the Cardinals. Third baseman Anthony Rendon hit a solo shot to give the Nationals an early 1-0 lead. He talked about the win and the curveball that Michael Wacha threw him, which resulted in the first run of the game. "It was a good win. Obviously, they are a tremendous team. They got the best

Rendon's solo blast gives Nationals early advantage (Span update, Nats win 3-1)

Third baseman Anthony Rendon gave the Nationals their first lead and first run of the series with a solo homer in the third inning. Rendon went after the first pitch, a curveball, from Cardinals right-hander Michael Wacha and launched it into the St. Louis bullpen, well over the wall in left-center. It was Rendon's third homer of the season and the Nationals lead 1-0. Nats

Ramos takes five swings, hits five balls as recovery continues

Catcher Wilson Ramos met with reporters pregame Friday to give an update on the rehab process for his hamate fracture in his left hand. Ramos had surgery and got the stitches taken out last Monday. He has begun an intensive strengthening regimen to build the left wrist and hand back to full strength. He has been on the disabled list since April 1 after feeling

Williams and Jordan react after 8-0 loss to Cardinals

Manager Matt Williams declined to comment on what he told the Nationals following their 8-0 loss to the Cardinals on Thursday night at Nationals Park. "I am not answering that question. That is for me and my team and no one else's business," Williams said. But Williams left no doubt as to his impressions of his team's sloppy play. The Nats committed four errors and

Rough start for Nats in opener vs. Cards (St. Louis wins 8-0)

It's been a shaky start for the Nationals, who trail 3-0. Matt Carpenter reached first base in the top of the first when shortstop Ian Desmond bobbled a grounder right to him. Kolten Wong was safe with a single when Taylor Jordan could not get the ball out of his glove in time for the toss to first baseman Adam LaRoche. With two men on,

Williams and Espinosa respect Cardinals, but it's more about the Nats

Nationals manager Matt Williams has respect for the Cardinals as they begin a four-game series at Nationals Park, with both teams at 9-6. They have a lot in common, with great starting pitching and timely hitting. But is Williams intimidated by playing them because the Nats' record early this season against better teams? Not necessarily. "They play the game really well," Williams said. "They do

Williams updates Fister's simulated game and Harper's quad

Manager Matt Williams had some positive news on the recovery of right-hander Doug Fister, who has been on the disabled list with a right lat strain since the beginning of the season Williams reported Fister tossed two innings and 28 pitches today in a simulated game in extended spring training in Viera, Fla. "Felt good about it," Williams said. "Reports are his second inning was

Walters delivers game's biggest hit against familiar foe

Baseball is a small world. With apologies to Kevin Bacon, call it six degrees of separation on the diamond. Nationals pinch-hitter Zach Walters crushed a slider off of Marlins reliever Mike Dunn to give the Nats their first lead of Wednesday's game. The Nationals end up winning 6-3 after trailing 3-0. Dunn and Walters attended the same high school, Cimarron Memorial High School in Las

Rendon staying healthy and delivering big hits for Nationals

Remember during draft time when all the naysayers complained about Anthony Rendon and his ability to stay healthy? I do too, and I asked a professional who was there. He recollected what the apprehension was for Rendon when the Nationals selected him in 2011. Jim Callis was the executive editor for Baseball America back then. He is now the senior writer for MLBpipeline.com "He had

Pair of walk off winners down on the Nats farm

There was plenty of walk-off excitement in Woodbridge. Recently called up third baseman Khayyan Norfork scored the winning run on a Carolina double play attempt as the P-Nats downed Carolina 6-5. With the game knotted at 5-5, Norfork was hit by a pitch to start the rally. He went to second on Oscar Tejeda's groundout. Kevin Keyes was then intentionally walked by Carolina's Louis Head

Giolito and Johansen shine in weekend series for Hagerstown

The low Single-A Hagerstown Suns continue to roll, and are now 9-2 to start the season after a 6-1 disptach of Lakewood on Sunday, completing a four-game sweep of the BlueClaws. Center fielder Isaac Ballou and shortstop Wilmer Difo had back-to-back doubles to highlight a four-run third inning. Right-hander Jake Johansen (1-0) pitched five innings, allowing one earned run on two hits with four walks

Potomac outfielder Miller ready to display power again

Outfielder Brandon Miller displayed impressive power number last season for low Single-A Hagerstown, and hopes to continue that trend as he graduates this season to high Single-A Potomac.Coming into Saturday's game, Miller had hit home runs in two of his last three games with the P-Nats. While with the Suns, Miller slammed 18 home runs in 103 games. He also had 26 doubles and two

Barrett perfect addition as Nationals prepare to take on Braves' stingy bullpen

Nationals right-handed reliever Aaron Barrett is right in the middle of quite a run. Let's begin with spring training. Barrett played in 10 games and finished 10 2/3 innings without allowing a run. He gave up only five hits, struck out eight and walked none. Opposing hitters batted .147 against him. Now nine games into the 2014 regular season, teams are befuddled by Barrett and

Strasburg delivers on pregame plan he told Desmond

Shortstop Ian Desmond was able to put the game away with a grand slam in the eighth inning Thursday as the Nationals beat the Marlins 7-1 to sweep the three-game set. "I had been scuffling all day," Desmond said. "I knew that going in, they had been putting some quality at bats off of us late in the games. They made it interesting yesterday, back

Strasburg off to good start, Werth homers (Desmond hits grand slam in 7-1 win)

Right-hander Stephen Strasburg allowed a single to begin the game by Marlins left fielder Christian Yelich, who promptly stole second and went to third on an error by Nate McLouth. Yelich tried to come home when Derek Dietrich hit a comebacker that Strasburg fielded. He threw home and got Yelich in a rundown to record the first out of the inning. The Marlins did not

Roark available if needed today, other bullpen news, Fister update

Manager Matt Williams said Thursday that right-hander Tanner Roark is available out of the bullpen if Stephen Strasburg can't make it through six innings against the Marlins today in the series finale. "Well, if we have to, we have the ability to go to Tanner (Roark), if we have to," Williams said. "We hope that that is not the case. If we do, he would

Stammen a great example of Nationals' "versatile" bullpen

Facing a 5-0 deficit in the fourth inning might have many teams thinking about how they can get ready for the final game of the series and just try to win two out of three. Last season, down 5-0 that late in the game might have been too much to overcome for the Nationals. But eight games into the season, the Nationals now have five

Intentional walk to get to Jayson Werth backfires on Marlins

It is a strategic move. But you don't see a team walk a batter to get to a clutch hitter like Jayson Werth too many times. It set up a possible double play. Instead it turned into a game-changing grand slam. Nationals reliever Craig Stammen, who kept the Marlins off the board for three and 1/3 innings, said it doesn't take too much to get

Marlins strike first against Zimmermann (Werth slam lifts Nats to 10-7 win)

The Marlins were quick out of the gates against Nationals starter Jordan Zimmermann. The first three batters reached base. Christian Yelich led off the game with a single and stole second base. After a Derek Dietrich walk, Giancarlo Stanton connected on an RBI single and the Marlins led 1-0. Garrett Jones' sacrifice fly brought Dietrich home and extended the Marlins' lead to 2-0. Left-hander Brad

Injury updates on Solis, Pleffner, Estevez and Ward

Double-A Harrisburg left-hander Sammy Solis is dealing with a back injury. "He is doing well," assistant general manager and vice president player development Doug Harris said. "He is feeling well and he is beginning to progress. We will put together a return to the mound progression. Hopefully we can go forward with that." They hope to have a better picture of when Solis will return

Zimmerman going back to three-quarter angle throwing motion to protect shoulder

After a couple of days of rest, third baseman Ryan Zimmerman returned to the starting lineup and will debut for the first time this season a new three-quarter throwing motion. "It feels good," Zimmerman said. "I think that is one of the reasons why we decided to go ahead and try it. It is not as stressful as the arm angle that is higher. So,

LaRoche, Rendon find several ways to beat the Marlins

A veteran not known for his speed getting that extra base. A young player returning to his collegiate position making a big defensive play. Both combine for big hits. All are a part of the Nationals' 5-0 victory over the Marlins on Tuesday night. First baseman Adam LaRoche was able to slide safely into second base in the sixth inning, thanks to Marlins second baseman

LaRoche gives Nats early advantage against Fish (Nats win 5-0)

The Nationals plated a run in the bottom of the first. Jayson Werth hit a two-out double against Marlins starter Henderson Alvarez. Adam LaRoche brought Werth in with a run-scoring single, but was tagged out in a rundown between first and second to end the inning. It's 1-0 after one inning. Lefty Gio Gonzalez is starting for the Nationals. He's dominated the Fish on South

Ramos on latest injury: "Hopefully, that was the last one"

Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos spoke Tuesday for the first time about undergoing surgery to remove the fractured hamate bone in his left hand. He recounted when he first felt soreness during the last week of spring training and then when he felt the severe pain during an at-bat against the Mets on opening day. "It was the last week of spring. I was feeling something

Nationals have highest recent success rate employing Arizona Fall League participants

The Nationals' opening day roster is chock full of Arizona Fall League participants. According to an Arizona Fall League news release, 53 percent of MLB opening day rosters (including disabled lists) played in the AFL. That is, 452 of the 854 players listed on the the 30 Major League Baseball opening day rosters played in the AFL. The Nationals and Padres have the most, with

No panic in Nats right before the untuck

It takes some work to get to the untuck. Nationals closer Rafael Soriano made it interesting in the ninth inning, especially in a one-run game on Sunday against the Braves. He struck out Dan Uggla to begin the frame. And then a pop-up to first by Gerard Laird had him looking good with two outs and no one on. But back-to-back singles by Andrelton Simmons

Desmond and Jordan talk after 2-1 dispatch of rival Braves

Right-hander Taylor Jordan showed poise and resiliency on the mound Sunday as the Nationals got their first win of the season against the Braves, 2-1. Shortstop Ian Desmond said Jordan and catcher Sandy Leon did a nice job against a veteran and big hitting Braves lineup. "I thought Taylor and Sandy (Leon) didn't an unbelievable job," Desmond said. "That is a young battery right there

Nationals again score first against the Braves (Nats win 2-1)

The Nationals and Braves wrap up their first matchup of the season on Sunday with right-hander Taylor Jordan facing left-hander Alex Wood. The Braves have won 15 of the last 21 games against the Nationals and are 9-2 in that span at Nationals Park. The Nationals scored first and took a 1-0 lead in the first inning on a base hit by Jayson Werth. Third

Harper on struggles: "I am pretty lost right now"

Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper's frustrations early this season at the plate reached a boiling point after striking out to lead off the eighth inning of a 6-2 Braves win Saturday night. One video replay appeared to show him throwing his batting helmet as he walked down the steps into the dugout and then toward the clubhouse after the strikeout. On Saturday, he went 0-for-4

Braves chase Strasburg after early LaRoche homer (Nats lose 6-2)

As the Nationals and Braves tangle in the second game of their initial three-game set of 2014 on Saturday night in Washington, D.C., right-hander Stephen Strasburg is facing Braves right-hander Julio Teheran. The Nationals opened the scoring with a two-run homer by Adam LaRoche in the first inning. The mammoth shot by LaRoche came on a 2-2 pitch off of Teheran and reached the upper

Williams believes Harper not too far off from getting going

Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper is scuffling just a bit to begin the season. Manager Matt Williams is not worried about Harper, saying his 21-year-old left fielder has seemed just a "tick off" at the plate the last few days. Williams said Harper might be bit frustrated with the slow start at the plate, as he's just 3-for-17 (.176) with no homers and no RBIs

Williams: Fister set to throw Sunday, Gonzalez under the weather

This afternoon, manager Matt Williams said right-hander Doug Fister is doing well in his rehabilitation from a right lat strain. Fister has been on the disabled list since March 23. Williams said Fister did "heavy exercise" today and felt no issues with the lat. The Nationals manager expects Fister to get back to baseball-related activities as early as Sunday. "We look to get him out

Catching prospect Severino more comfortable and assured

Twenty-year-old catcher Pedro Severino continues to progress well in the Nationals system with his promotion to high Single-A Potomac this spring. There is a lot of buzz surrounding the young Dominican backstop, primarily for his solid defense and great hands. The 6-foot-1, 180-lb. Severino started his first game with the P-Nats on Thursday at Carolina. He expects to get a ton of at-bats with Potomac

Nats focus on aggressive baserunning mistakes in loss to Braves

The Nationals were aggressive on the basepaths Friday in their 2-1 loss to the Atlanta Braves in the home opener. Unfortunately, they came up short on three critical plays: a pair of caught stealings and another runner thrown out at the plate. Left fielder Bryce Harper was caught in a rundown in the second inning on a pitchout when he tried to swipe second. Shortstop

Lerner: Nats will not seek temporary spring training site prior to next move

Nationals principal owner Mark Lerner said before Friday's home opener against the Atlanta Braves that his team will not seek a temporary home for spring training while the club tries to work out a deal with the Houston Astros on a possible future joint facility in Florida. "No, I don't think that is the right move," Lerner said. "I think you do it, we do Continue reading ....

Williams says home opening day might be even more special than season opener

Manager Matt Williams said opening day in Washington, D.C., is just as special - or even more so - because it is the team's home opener in front of Nationals fans. Monday in New York was the season opener, of course, and Williams said because the team played so well in a series sweep, it makes today even more distinctive for the players. "It is

Hagerstown sets 25-man roster, ready for opening night

The low Single-A Hagerstown Suns make their season debut tonight against the Rome Braves under new manager Patrick Anderson with game time at 6:35 p.m. from Municipal Stadium in Hagerstown, Md. Tonight's pitching matchup is right-hander Nick Pivetta against right-hander Frank Lafreniere. Pivetta was 1-1 with a 2.91 ERA in nine games for the rookie-level GCL Nats and short-season Single-A Auburn. He was the Nationals'

LaRoche's health carries significant weight in Nats' chances this season

First baseman Adam LaRoche battled through 152 games in 2013 for the Nationals, but would be the first to admit he wasn't 100 percent healthy the entire season. Whether it was his elbow or attempting to maintain his weight, LaRoche struggled with his consistency at the plate. His .237 batting average was the lowest in his career in a season where he played at least

P-Nats' Mooneyham irons out mechanical issue, is confident to start 2014

WOODBRIDGE, Va. - Left-hander Brett Mooneyham cruised to an outstanding start last season for low Single-A Hagerstown. But when he got called up to high Single-A Potomac late in the season, he struggled a bit with his mechanics. With the Suns, Mooneyham was 10-3 with a 1.94 ERA in 17 starts with 79 strikeouts in 93 innings, and 41 walks. For the P-Nats, the 6-foot-5,

Espinosa's at-bat signal of renewed confidence at plate

It was not a start for Danny Espinosa, but his ninth-inning at-bat turned into a positive beginning for a veteran coming off a rough season. With the Nationals down 5-4, two out and Ian Desmond at first base, Espinosa strode to the plate to face Mets closer Bobby Parnell. Espinosa fought off several two-seam fastballs in an eight-pitch at-bat. "I am taking at-bats as they

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