Found April 10, 2013 on
The Nats Blog:
Chicago White Sox
It was the warmest day of the year in Washington, DC as the Nationals and White Sox started game two of their three game series. The game started 16 minutes late as the umpires arrived to the ballpark late due to DC traffic, in your fun "Only In DC" moment of the game, but there's a lot to look at from the park. It was just the preface to a 5-2 win as the Nationals improved to 6-2 on the season and a perfect 5-0 at home.
Jordan Zimmermann's performance didn't get off to the most ideal start. He gave up a run in the first inning on back to back hits by Jeff Keppinger and Alex Rios. No further damage was done in the inning, though. He cruised through the second and third, and in the fourth, he gave up two singles. The first was to Alex Rios, but he was picked off by Zimmermann after he got a huge, ill-advised jump. In each of the next two innings, he gave up a hit to the leadoff batter, but it only cost him a run in the sixth inning. It was overall an excellent outing from the great, young pitcher.
The Nats middle infield put together a couple of impressive plays during the game as well. Ian Desmond and Danny Espinosa turned a spectacular double play in the fifth inning to negate the leadoff single in that inning, and Espinosa had a couple of nice plays in shallow right field on the extreme shift against former Nationals left fielder and first baseman Adam Dunn.
The Nats offense looked to struggle through the first three innings, mustering just one hit. Bryce Harper, as has been his way this season, brought the offense to life to lead off the fourth. On the first pitch of the inning, he destroyed a baseball way up the second deck in right field for his fourth home run of the season. It appeared to come just a few feet from hitting the facing of the third deck. Desmond scored another run later in the inning after doubling and being driven in by Espinosa to give the Nats the lead.
In the fifth, Jayson Werth singled and went first-to-third on a Harper single. Then, Ryan Zimmerman singled, scoring Werth, and Harper went first-to-third, giving the Nats a 3-1 lead. In the sixth, things got off to a quick start. Desmond tripled, which brought the infield in on the grass. Espinosa hit a hard grounder down the first base line for a double, scoring Desmond. Espinosa later scored on a Denard Span single, giving the Nats a 5-2 lead.
Drew Storen pitched a nice eighth inning in relief of Zimmermann. He gave up a single to Dewayne Wise to start the inning, but it was a soft roller up the middle. He retired the next three batters in order in a pretty clean inning and a welcome sight for Nats fans. Rafael Soriano didn't have a clean inning, like Storen, but he looked just about as good. He pitched with much more accuracy and didn't give up a run for the first time in two outings.
The Nats will look to sweep their second consecutive home series to start the season on Thurday evening with Dylan Axelrod and Dan Haren looking to go for the Sox and Nats, respectively.
- I disagreed with Davey Johnson's decision to remove Zimmermann after throwing just 90 free and easy pitches through seven innings, and I think it's just one example of some interesting pitching decisions early in the season. Plan to read more about this topic on the site very soon.
- Nationals PR noted that with Zimmermann's win tonight, he is 7-0 in his last 13 Nationals Park starts with a 2.91 ERA. The last time he earned a loss at Nats Park was on May 17, 2012. Say what you will about pitcher wins, and I've said a lot, but that's impressive.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
Okay, so technically Harper's bat was already broken when he singled up the middle in the fifth inning last night against Gavin Floyd, but the bat finished breaking when it crashed into his back. GIF above, a shot of the bat first breaking on contact here:
Beats breaking a bat against your head and bleeding all over the field, I guess.
Harper and his Pompadour were...
Jordan Zimmermann smiled one time during an April 2012 postgame interview. He also may have cracked a smile in a 2013 interview after a Spring Training start. In a stunning development, Jordan Zimmermann smiled and appered to have told a joke during his postgame meet and greet with the media on Wednesday night, following his 7 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 4 K, 90 pitch performance against the...
Up above, Bryce Harper's new 34/BH logo, which he Tweeted a picture of Friday afternoon. Apparently this is how all of Harper's new Under Armour cleats, gear, etc. will be branded; here's a pic of the cleats, also Tweeted by Harper on Friday:
(Photos by @Bharper3407)
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Up above, video from MLB.com of the baseball Bryce Harper put into orbit last night at Nationals Park. Poor little baseball never stood a chance...almost made it to the third deck.
(Screencap via MLB.com)
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Bryce Harper has joined Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods and Tom Brady on at least one list already. The 20-year-old has his own logo. Harper, who is off to a scorching start in his second big league season with the Nationals, tweeted a photo of his Under Armour logo on Friday. The logo features both the outfielder’s initials and his No. 34, and it’s actually pretty clever. So what’s...
Bryce Harper continued his torrid hot streak to start off the 2013 season on Wednesday as the Washington Nationals handled the visiting Chicago White Sox, winning by a score of 5-2 at Nationals Park. The 20-year-old Harper went 2-4, improving his batting average to .394 on the season. He now has 4 homer runs and 6 RBI in only 8 games in his second big league season and it appears...
There is no denying that Washington Nationals young superstar Bryce Harper plays the game with a youthful exuberance and a relentless aggressiveness befitting of his age. At 20, it shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone that Harper, while supremely talented and potential perhaps not yet realized, is still prone to making mistakes typical of an inexperienced baseball player with...
Cherry blossom! Very cool thing to see! #DC twitter.com/Bharper3407/st…
— Bryce Harper (@Bharper3407) April 10, 2013
Since arriving back in D.C. for the summer, several Nats players have Tweeted their displeasure with DC traffic; this week Denard Span Tweeted his complaints while stuck in a traffic jam on his way to Nationals Park. And of course, Wednesday night's...
We'd be remiss if we didn't say *something* about Ryan Zimmerman playing in game #1000 for the Nationals tonight. Through all the ups and downs (and for a while, mostly downs) Zim has been there. And what better way to mark 1,000 games than with a picture of Zim's babyfaced 2005 Topps Rookie Card. Congrats, Zim. Here's to 1000 more.
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On a night when Gavin Floyd had great stuff to start with (he had allowed only an Ian Desmond double to this point), Bryce Harper was waiting in the weeds.
What follows in the video is his fourth home run of the season, and 26th of his career. It tied the game at 1-1 in a game the Nationals would eventually win 5-2.
When you look at Harper, he doesn’t look like a guy who has...
Bryce Harper homered, Ian Desmond had three extra-base hits, Danny Espinosa provided his first two RBIs of the season, and the Washington Nationals beat the Chicago White Sox 5-2 Wednesday night to stay unbeaten at home.
In a game that began 16 minutes late because, the Nationals explained, the umpires got stuck in traffic, Washington starter Jordan Zimmermann (2-0) limited Chicago...
In the Washington Nationals' Wednesday night matchup against the Chicago White Sox, Jordan Zimmermann gave up a run in the first inning but was otherwise extremely sharp. He was able to keep his pitches down in the zone after the first inning, he didn't walk anyone, and he averaged just one hit per inning. As he finished the seventh inning getting Tyler Flowers to pop up...
Ryan Zimmerman delivered a two-run double after Bryce Harper was intentionally walked in the fourth inning, and the Washington Nationals beat the Chicago White Sox 7-4 on a windy Thursday night to cap a three-game sweep.
Dan Haren (1-1) got the win despite allowing 10 hits in five innings.
With the score tied at 3 in the fourth, Haren helped himself by doubling off Dylan Axelrod...
KEEP YOUR FRIENDS CLOSE AND YOUR ENEMIES CLOSER!
Team News and Notes
Atlanta Braves (6-1)
The Braves currently sit in first place in the NL East, and new addition Justin Upton is a major reason why. The 25-year-old has batted .423/.448/1.192 to start the season, with six bombs and eight RBI. The other half of the Upton brothers, B.J., has struggled to hit himself out of a barn batting...
We are now approximately nine games into the young MLB season and there are some interesting statistics developing around the league.
1. Washington Nationals face of the franchise Bryce Harper has yet to walk in 8 games. The young slugger had 4 home runs in 33 at bats but no one base on balls.
2. Rookie pitchers Jose Fernandez and Nick Tepesch both had impressive major league debuts...