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Astros hurler Brad Peacock began career with Nats (plus AFL update)

Right-hander Brad Peacock made a big splash in the World Series in Game 3, recording a save with 3 2/3 scoreless innings. He also appeared in the dramatic Game 5 last night, allowing two runs on three hits in 1 1/3 innings. If the name sounded familiar, you are correct. Peacock was a 41st-round draft pick of the Nationals in 2006. He pitched for the

Nats prospects head for winter league play

It is winter league time of year, even as the World Series heads toward Game 3. Winter league ball has always been a very important part of a baseball player’s continued evolution and a valued experience that can sometimes be that step a player needs to complete his game. Several Nationals prospects are hoping this experience now will help secure spots for 2018. Michael A.

Single-A Hagerstown recaps: Perkins, Sharp, Noll, Kieboom, Soto

Center fielder Blake Perkins made nice strides in 2017. The 21-year-old hit .297 down the stretch for low Single-A Hagerstown. His slash line was .255/.354/.378. His 31 steals were sixth overall in the South Atlantic League. In 129 games, Perkins collected 27 doubles, four triples, eight homers and 48 RBIs. “Blake Perkins is a guy that sets up well for me,” said Hagerstown manager Patrick

Nats AFL prospect: 3B Kelvin Gutierrez

The Nationals have been pleased with the progress of third baseman Kelvin Gutierrez. Despite an injury in 2017, they thought so much of him they placed him on their Arizona Fall League entrant, the Mesa Solar Sox. 3B Kelvin Gutierrez Age: 23 6-3, 185 lbs. Bats: Right Throws: Right Pimentel, Dominican Republic Round 5 (2016) 2017 season: POT, GCL Gutierrez played well for the Rookie-level

Murphy undergoes successful knee surgery

The Nationals announced this afternoon that second baseman Daniel Murphy underwent successful surgery to repair cartilage damage in his right knee. The club said Murphy’s rehabilitation will begin immediately and “progress throughout the offseason.” Specifically, Murphy underwent a debridement and microfracture surgery to repair damage to the articular cartilage in his right knee. Dr. Timothy Kremchek performed the procedure. The 32-year-old Murphy had another outstanding

Contracts of entire Nats coaching staff won’t be renewed

It’s not just manager Dusty Baker who will not return to the Nationals next season. The contracts of his entire coaching staff will not be renewed, allowing for whoever replaces Baker to choose his own coaches. Pitching coach Mike Maddux, hitting coach Rick Schu, bench coach Chris Speier, first base coach Davey Lopes, third base coach Bobby Henley, bullpen coach Dan Firova and assistant hitting

Nats AFL prospect: CF Daniel Johnson

The Nationals have another excellent crop of players playing for their Arizona Fall League affiliate for the 2017 season. I will be checking in with their progress and give you some background on a few of them throughout the offseason. CF Daniel JohnsonAge: 22 5-10, 185 lbs. Bats: Left Throws: Left New Mexico State Round 5 (2016) 2017 season: HAG, POT Johnson slashed .298/.356/.505 for

Reflecting on Werth with the Nats and where he might be next season

A few days have passed since the difficult Game 5 National League Division Series loss and reflection continues on the impact of left fielder Jayson Werth and whether or not 2017 was his final year in a Nationals uniform. Werth played seven seasons with the Nats from 2011-2017, the longest tenure for him with one team in his career. The Nats won 95 or more

Taylor solidifies place in outfield with powerful NLDS performance

Every Nationals player would be the first to admit personal accolades can never replace the accomplishment of moving on to the National League Championship Series, a prize the Nats have been unable to reach in four trips to the postseason since 2012. But one thing is for sure following Thursday’s Game 5 loss to the Cubs: Michael A. Taylor is a budding star. Taylor’s grand

Zimmerman takes some solace in club’s recent winning ways

The Nats players were pretty emotional after the loss to the Cubs knocked them out of the playoffs, as one could imagine. First baseman Ryan Zimmerman, the longest-tenured National, reflected on what felt like an abrupt end to a winning campaign. The Cubs came back from a 4-1 deficit to beat the Nats 9-8 in Game 5 of the National League Division Series Thursday night,

Scherzer on a bewildering fifth inning that changed the game

With the Nationals leading 4-3 in Game 5 of the National League Division Series against the Cubs, the fifth inning started off well for Max Scherzer in his first relief appearance of the postseason. Scherzer recorded a pair of outs. But then the trouble started. The Cubs’ Willson Contreras singled. Then Albert Almora Jr. singled. The hit that changed the game came next from Addison

Murphy, Taylor go deep in second (Cubs win 9-8)

That wasn’t the first inning Gio Gonzalez would have wanted to begin Game 5 of the National League Division Series. Jon Jay led off with a double and went to third on wild pitch. After Kris Bryant struck out, Jay came home on an Anthony Rizzo grounder to Daniel Murphy. It marked Rizzo’s sixth RBI of the series. Albert Almora Jr. singled and Addison Russell

Baker on Gonzalez as starter and where that leaves Scherzer, Roark

Left-hander Gio Gonzalez gets the nod for the Nationals’ most important game in 2017 and, really, in their franchise history to date. Gonzalez will be on the hill tonight for Game 5 of the National League Division Series against the Cubs. Manager Dusty Baker could have easily given the start to right-hander Tanner Roark, who until late Wednesday morning appeared to be the planned Game

NLDS Game 5 lineups: Nats vs. Cubs

The Nationals will hand the ball to left-hander Gio Gonzalez for tonight’s deciding Game 5 against the Cubs in the National League Division Series at Nationals Park. Gonzalez got a no-decision in Game 2, going five innings, allowing three runs on three hits with two walks and six strikeouts. The Nats used a five-run eighth inning to come back and beat the Cubs 6-3. “Bottom

Mets agree to purchase Triple-A Syracuse, Nats will need new affiliate in 2019

The Nationals will need a new Triple-A affiliate in 2019 because the Mets have reportedly reached an agreement to purchase the Triple-A Syracuse Chiefs, according to Syracuse.com. The Nats have played their Triple-A games in Syracuse since 2009. The Chiefs have operated at a loss every season since 2006, except in 2010. This means the Nationals will have one more season in Syracuse, through the

No panic for Turner with slow offensive start, but Game 2 win helps

The Nats made a dramatic comeback in Game 2 of the National League Division Series, thanks to home runs by Bryce Harper and Ryan Zimmerman, to beat the Cubs 6-3. The series is even at game apiece. But to really get the offense going in these playoffs, the Nationals have to figure out what is going on with shortstop Trea Turner, who has yet to

Nats bullpen finishes off Cubs in Game 2 with masterful four innings

It takes the offense, pitching and defense to win a playoff game. In Game 1 of the National League Division Series, the Nationals got the starting pitching they needed, but the offense and defense didn’t have a great game in a 3-0 loss to the Cubs. In Game 2, Nats starter Gio Gonzalez allowed three runs in five innings of work. In order for the

Ball carrying early in Game 2 (Nats win 6-3)

The National League Division Series Game 2 scoring began with Anthony Rendon crushing a 1-1 offering from Jon Lester just inside the right field foul pole in the bottom of the first to give the Nationals a 1-0 lead. It was the first run and first lead in the series for the Nats. Willson Contreras countered with a solo homer off of Gio Gonzalez over

Baker, Harper not in panic mode as they ready for Game 2

Losing the first game of a five-game National League Division Series on their home field puts the Nationals in a very difficult position. But it is not insurmountable. In 2016, the Nats fell in their first game of the series at home to the Dodgers in the NLDS. They went on to win the next two games to go up two games to one. Obviously,

Gonzalez got into nice groove in 2017, earns Game 2 start

Left-hander Gio Gonzalez gets the nod as the Game 2 starter for the National League Division Series between the Nationals and the Cubs. The Cubs will counter with southpaw Jon Lester, who went 13-8 with a 4.33 ERA in 32 starts this season. Gonzalez went 15-9 with a 2.96 ERA in 32 starts. He struck out 188 in 201 innings. The 15 wins were the

Strasburg “outstanding,” but comes up short in 3-0 Game 1 loss

Nationals right-hander Stephen Strasburg came out early and set the tone for Game 1 of the National League Division Series. In the first five innings, the Cubs mustered zero runs on no hits. They had one baserunner - a walk to Addison Russell in the second - to show for 16 at-bats. Strasburg racked up eight strikeouts to set a new franchise postseason single-game record.

Strasburg strong to start in Game 1 (Cubs win 3-0)

Right-hander Stephen Strasburg came out strong to begin National League Division Series Game 1 against the Chicago Cubs. The Nationals starter struck out two in the first inning, getting both Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo swinging. Strasburg began the second by catching Willson Contreras looking at a third strike. With two outs, he walked Addison Russell, but then induced a towering fly ball to right

Baker’s insight on Harper in No. 2 spot in Game 1 lineup

The Nationals lineup is set for Game 1 of the National League Division Series and right-fielder Bryce Harper remains in the two-hole. For most of the season, Harper hit third. Harper returned last week after missing 42 games due to a hyperextended knee and strained calf. Baker decided to ease Harper back in the lineup by placing him in the No. 2 spot because he

Baker seeks World Series ring to add to his complete life

Facing the Chicago Cubs in the post season is a big deal for Dusty Baker. But he countered, then again, he has history with a lot of teams the Nationals could play in the 2017 playoffs. Baker managed the Cubs from 2003 to 2006. The first two seasons they won 88 and 89 games. The last season they finished 30 games under .500. “What comes

Strasburg’s early-career “soul searching” prepared him for this Game 1 start

Manager Dusty Baker announced right-hander Stephen Strasburg will be the Nationals’ Game 1 starter Friday night in the National League Division Series against the Cubs. “I kind of had an idea of what was going to happen a couple days ago,” Strasburg said. “You know, they told me to throw a bullpen on the first workout day. “I’m excited for the opportunity to pitch in

Turner’s speed was a factor in last Cubs series before he left with broken wrist

The last time the Nationals faced off against the Cubs, shortstop Trea Turner stole seven bases in a three-game span. In one of those games, he stole four bases. Turner was hit by a pitch in the June 29 game and left with a broken wrist. Pedro Strop hit him with a pitch in the seventh inning. The Cubs won that game 5-4. Up 4-2

Goodwin on returning to Nats: “I think I’m in a good place”

Outfielder Brian Goodwin was again a full participant in the Nationals’ second day of workouts and batting practice on Wednesday as they prepare for the Chicago Cubs in the National League Division Series starting Friday. Showing no ill effects from the groin strain that sidelined him for over a month, Goodwin made his case for inclusion on the postseason roster. General manager Mike Rizzo said

Doolittle’s talent and attitude invigorate Nationals

Sean Doolittle had a pretty eventful Monday. Hanging out in D.C., Doolittle and girlfriend Eireann Dolan got married. Dolan and Doolittle eloped and now are husband and wife, just in time for the National League Division Series. We had the afternoon off so we eloped and we’ve never been happier ✨✨✨ pic.twitter.com/NrVB7Klf3R -- ScarinDolanBoolittle (@EireannDolan) October 3, 2017 “It was something we had been thinking

Goodwin returns, now will he make postseason roster?

The first day of workouts at Nationals Park revealed a welcome sight as outfielder Brian Goodwin returned to the Nationals. Goodwin went through the entire 3 1/2-hour workout without a hitch: running, fielding, catching fly balls and spending extra time in the batter’s box. Goodwin has been out since Aug. 14 with a left groin strain. Recently, he has returned to games and built at-bats

Nats align workout schedule as they prepare for postseason opener

The game times for the National League Division Series games against the Chicago Cubs are locked in. Game 1 Friday will begin at 7:31 p.m. Eastern time and Game 2 is set for first pitch Saturday at 5:38 p.m. Eastern time in D.C. The games will be broadcast nationally by TBS. MASN will broadcast exclusive one-hour pregame and postgame shows during each game of the

Gonzalez under the weather, but says no excuse in 11-8 loss

Left-hander Gio Gonzalez got off to a rough start that set the tone for 11-8 Nationals loss to the Pirates that ended the regular season. Gonzalez allowed five runs on three hits with two walks and a hit by pitch in a forgettable first inning. “Before this start I felt great,” Gonzalez said. “This was awesome. I felt like I actually did something. Then today’s

Gonzalez struggling with command early (Pirates win 11-8)

The Pirates got to Gio Gonzalez with a big first inning, scoring five runs on three hits. Gonzalez walked two batters and hit another with a pitch. Max Moroff’s three-run double was the highlight. The Nationals came back quickly in the bottom of the first. Trea Turner doubled and Bryce Harper walked. They pulled off another double steal, Turner to third and Harper to second.

Johnson, Suero and Read appreciative of organizational honors

The Nationals honored their minor league players of the year before Sunday’s regular season finale against the Pirates. Daniel Johnson and Wander Suero took home honors as the organizational player and pitcher of the year, respectively. Raudy Read was the Bob Boone Award recipient for the 2017 season. Center fielder Johnson, 22, was a fifth-round selection in the 2016 draft out of New Mexico State.

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