Nationals Journal: Brushback


Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 04/23/2014

Gio Gonzalez: Mike Trout stopper?

Gio Gonzalez has had more success against Mike Trout than any big league pitcher

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 04/23/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 04/22/2014

Nationals starting pitching is slowly trending up

Starting pitching has allowed only four earned runs over the past 26 2/3 innings.

By James Wagner  |  07:00 AM ET, 04/22/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 04/21/2014

Danny Espinosa continues his re-emergence

Danny Espinosa’s reemergence has been the most pleasant development of the Nationals’ season so far.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 04/21/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:45 AM ET, 04/18/2014

Nationals players confused, upset about the ‘transfer rule’

The issue has come up twice already for the Nationals but it doesn’t mean players are happy with the new interpretation.

By James Wagner  |  07:45 AM ET, 04/18/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:45 AM ET, 04/17/2014

Defending NL champion St. Louis Cardinals come to town

The Nationals went 0-6 against the Cardinals last season, and are 6-11 since the start of the 2012 season including the playoffs.

By James Wagner  |  07:45 AM ET, 04/17/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 04/16/2014

Nationals starting pitchers have struggled early

Nationals starters have a 5.06 ERA, fifth highest in the majors. They have also averaged only 5 1/3 innings per start.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 04/16/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 04/15/2014

Nationals hope to improve early defensive miscues

The Nationals have committed 13 errors in 13 games, more than half in the weekend series in Atlanta.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 04/15/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 04/14/2014

Takeaways from a tough weekend in Atlanta

Not all was gloomy as the Nationals were swept in Atlanta. Bryce Harper and Kevin Frandsen are hitting.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 04/14/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 04/11/2014

Aaron Barrrett strikes out Giancarlo Stanton to continue unhittable start

Matt Williams has called on Aaron Barrett in big spots, and the rookie delivered again Thursday.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 04/11/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 04/10/2014

Craig Stammen and what makes comebacks happen

Reliever Craig Stammen’s 3 1/3 scoreless innings helped make the Nats’ 9-7 comeback possible

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 04/10/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 04/09/2014

The early impact of Anthony Rendon and Adam LaRoche

Both have been perhaps the best two players on the Nationals through the first week.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 04/09/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:20 AM ET, 04/08/2014

The Marlins are good? They’re off to a strong start

The Marlins are off to the hottest start in baseball and have the pitching to sustain it.

By James Wagner  |  08:20 AM ET, 04/08/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 04/07/2014

Takeaways from the first Nationals-Braves series

The first series between the Nationals and Braves left us with several impressions.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 04/07/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 04/04/2014

Nationals and Braves face off for the first of many meetings

The Nationals and Braves play Friday for the first of 19 times this season.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 04/04/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 04/03/2014

Drew Storen, the Nationals’ players union rep, on the new drug suspension rules

Storen said players in the Nationals clubhouse liked the stiffer penalties for performance-enhancing drug violations.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 04/03/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 04/02/2014

Rafael Soriano working on new pitches

The right-handed closer wouldn’t commit to using a new sinker-like fastball and a change-up during the season.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 04/02/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 04/01/2014

Bullpen catcher Sam Palace finally gets his major league opportunity with the Nats

Formerly a bullpen catcher in the minor leagues who got rare opportunities to play, Palace is now with the big league club.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 04/01/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/31/2014

Nationals 2014: The best case and the worst case

On opening day, we present our annual best case and worst scenario for each Nationals player.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/31/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback, Washington Nationals

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/27/2014

Aaron Barrett, big leaguer

Matt Williams called Aaron Barrett into his office Tuesday afternoon, and then Barrett’s dream unfolded in real life.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/27/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/26/2014

Who hits second for the Nationals?

Anthony Rendon may be a “prototypical” second hitter, but Matt Williams finds his lineup pieces fit better when Ian Desmond hits second.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/26/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 06:45 AM ET, 03/25/2014

Tanner Roark is baseball’s reigning king of the called strike

No pitcher in baseball coerced hitters to look at pitches in the strike zone with greater frequency than Tanner Roark last season.

By Adam Kilgore  |  06:45 AM ET, 03/25/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/24/2014

Bryce Harper wants his on-base percentage ‘through the roof’

With his knee healthy and his slump dissipating, Bryce Harper is ready for the season to come.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/24/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/20/2014

Matt Williams and small lineup edges

Nationals manager will change up his daily lineup based on several interesting criteria.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/20/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/19/2014

Tanner Roark, Taylor Jordan, Chris Young take aim at fifth spot in Nationals rotation

It’s a big moment for the Nationals’ fifth start competition, with Taylor Jordan pitching a day after Tanner Roark’s impressive performance.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/19/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback, Washington Nationals

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/17/2014

Don’t call Tyler Moore lackadaisical

Moore has learned to push himself at the plate with more urgency.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/17/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/14/2014

The Nationals are having a solid offensive spring

While it’s hard to take any meaning out of spring performance, the Nationals have been hitting well.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/14/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Hitting, Morning Brushback, Rick Schu

Posted at 07:15 AM ET, 03/13/2014

Do the Nationals have the easiest schedule in baseball?

According to FanGraphs.com, the Nationals’ opponents have the lowest average project WAR (wins above replacement).

By James Wagner  |  07:15 AM ET, 03/13/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/12/2014

Stephen Strasburg or Jordan Zimmermann: Who should start Nationals opening day?

Stephen Strasburg appears to be the safe assumption, but Matt Williams says he has not ruled out Jordan Zimmermann starting opening day.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/12/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/11/2014

Scott Hairston and the backups receive early playing time

Manager Matt Williams is playing the backups often early, but will use the regulars more as the season approaches.

By James Wagner  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/11/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback, Scott Hairston, Tyler Moore

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 03/10/2014

Matt Williams’s Nationals lineup ideas

The manager has an idea of what he wants the regular season lineup to look like to start.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 03/10/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 03/07/2014

Jayson Werth on injuries and playing time

He is the oldest regular position player on the team and has an ideal target of games played for 2014.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 03/07/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Jayson Werth, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:15 AM ET, 03/06/2014

Jamey Carroll and a potential spot on the Nationals’ bench

The 40-year-old utility man and infielder hopes to make the team when camp breaks, but will the Nationals take him north?

By James Wagner  |  07:15 AM ET, 03/06/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/05/2014

Matt Williams fills out lineup cards with coaches’ input

The Nationals new manager meets with coaches daily and decides, among other things, on a lineup.

By James Wagner  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/05/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 03/04/2014

The Nationals’ coming payroll challenge

The Nationals have developed an impressive collection of young talent. Their challenge now will be paying for it as it ages.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 03/04/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:15 AM ET, 03/03/2014

Zach Walters’s hot start to spring

The 24-year-old infield prospect is hitting and fielding well, and Nationals coaches have taken notice.

By James Wagner  |  07:15 AM ET, 03/03/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 02/28/2014

Blake Treinen impressing in Nationals camp

The 25-year-old hard-throwing right-hander’s fastball hovered in the 80s during college.

By James Wagner  |  07:00 AM ET, 02/28/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 02/27/2014

Matt Williams on Nationals camp: ‘They’ve had fun and they’ve worked really hard’

The first-year manager was nervous about his first camp, but has enjoyed it and is pleased with players’ efforts.

By James Wagner  |  07:00 AM ET, 02/27/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 02/26/2014

Leftover observations of Lucas Giolito

The 19-year-old, 6-foot-6 hard-throwing right hander was ranked no lower than No. 44 on the major top prospects lists.

By James Wagner  |  07:00 AM ET, 02/26/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 02/24/2014

A too-early guess at the Nationals’ opening day roster

It’s probably too early to venture a solid guess at the Nationals’ opening day roster, but here is one attempt, anyway.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 02/24/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  25-man roster, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 02/21/2014

How Homer Bailey’s contract extension affects Jordan Zimmermann

Homer Bailey’s contract provided a clear benchmark for Jordan Zimmermann’s future negotiations.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 02/21/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Jordan Zimmermann, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 02/19/2014

Gio Gonzalez’s contract has become ridiculously favorable for the Nationals

As Gio Gonzalez has developed into a consistent star, the Nationals’ bet on him has paid off.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 02/19/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 02/18/2014

Ryan Mattheus eager to earn back his spot in the bullpen

Ryan Mattheus’s has motivation this spring: “I’m not the guy with a 6.30 ERA who punches lockers.”

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 02/18/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 02/17/2014

Matt Williams faces the music

Matt Williams’s unique thoughts on the connection between baseball rhythm, music and dance.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 02/17/2014 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  matt williams, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 10/01/2013

Thanks for following along this season

A message from us to you, the loyal readers.

By James Wagner  |  07:00 AM ET, 10/01/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 09/30/2013

Bryce Harper plans to relax, then 'get big as a house' after first full season

Bryce Harper looks back at his season and looks forward to starting an offseason that will not require surgery.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 09/30/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Bryce Harper, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 09/27/2013

The meaning of the Nationals' strong finish

The Nationals’ run toward contention wasn’t enough, but it wasn’t worthless, either.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 09/27/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:23 AM ET, 09/26/2013

The ‘what ifs’ of the Nationals season

What could have been if the Nationals had done some things differently this season?

By James Wagner  |  08:23 AM ET, 09/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 09/25/2013

What the Nationals are playing for

Faced with the predicament of playing games with no bearing on the standings, team finds something else to play for.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 09/25/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 09/24/2013

The Nationals and what could have been

The Nationals fell short of the playoffs for a number of reasons, from the underrated enormity of the task to nine specific games.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 09/24/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:29 AM ET, 09/23/2013

Dan Haren: ‘Keep this group together’

The veteran starter and impending free agent believes the Nationals’ future is bright.

By James Wagner  |  08:29 AM ET, 09/23/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:12 AM ET, 09/20/2013

How the development of Tanner Roark, Taylor Jordan affect next season’s rotation

The next wave of Nationals’ young pitching depth is getting closer to the big leagues.

By James Wagner  |  07:12 AM ET, 09/20/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:10 AM ET, 09/19/2013

The Nationals cling to every last hope

Their magic number for playoff elimination sits at five, while they are five games behind the Reds for the second wild-card spot in the loss column with 10 games left to play.

By James Wagner  |  08:10 AM ET, 09/19/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:08 AM ET, 09/18/2013

Xavier Cede o could factor into the Nationals final weeks

Manager Davey Johnson has been impressed with the left-handed pitcher, and the team wants to evaluate all lefty relievers in the final weeks.

By James Wagner  |  08:08 AM ET, 09/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:34 AM ET, 09/17/2013

Bryce Harper playing well after hip treatment

The outfielder is 8 for 20 in the past five games, having rested, received treatment and dialed back some of his aggressiveness at the plate.

By James Wagner  |  07:34 AM ET, 09/17/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Bryce Harper, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:37 AM ET, 09/16/2013

Nationals want to send a message to the Braves

With two wins in Washington this week, the Braves could claim the NL East.

By James Wagner  |  07:37 AM ET, 09/16/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:42 AM ET, 09/13/2013

Nationals’ success at home

The Nationals have a .563 winning percentage at home and begin a 10-game homestand on Friday.

By James Wagner  |  07:42 AM ET, 09/13/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 09/12/2013

Xavier Cedeno will get his chance down the stretch

Davey Johnson wants to look at little-used Xavier Cedeno this September.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 09/12/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 01:53 AM ET, 09/11/2013

The Nationals give Wilson Ramos a chance to throw out runners, for a change

After two years of failing to hold runners close, the Nationals’ pitching showed improvement with two crucial outs.

By Adam Kilgore  |  01:53 AM ET, 09/11/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 09/10/2013

The Nationals’ offense keeps them hanging by a thread

As the Nationals win, they receive daily reminders that their best baseball of the season probably won’t matter.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 09/10/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 09/09/2013

After doubts, Ryan Zimmerman wants to stay at third base

Ryan Zimmerman still sees himself as a third baseman, but he can admit now he was "skeptical" earlier in the season.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 09/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback, Ryan Zimmerman

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 09/06/2013

The importance of the Nationals’ weekend

The Nationals will play the Marlins this weekend, while the team they're chasing, the Reds, get the Dodgers.

By James Wagner  |  07:01 AM ET, 09/06/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:18 AM ET, 09/05/2013

Nationals offense produces just enough

The offense has improved in the second half, but on Wednesday struggled with runners in scoring position again.

By James Wagner  |  08:18 AM ET, 09/05/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 09/04/2013

Corey Brown starts his call-up strong

Corey Brown drilled a huge home run in his first major league at-bat of the season.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 09/04/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:17 AM ET, 09/03/2013

The case for Danny Espinosa’s call-up

Danny Espinosa may have had a bad year, but his defense could still help the Nationals down the stretch.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:17 AM ET, 09/03/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:47 AM ET, 09/02/2013

Bryce Harper’s bunt was a good play

Bunting may have a bad name, but that doesn't mean Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper made a bad play last night.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:47 AM ET, 09/02/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 08/30/2013

On the Nationals’ offensive improvements

The Nationals lineup has been healthy since July 4 and it has made a difference.

By James Wagner  |  07:01 AM ET, 08/30/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:16 AM ET, 08/29/2013

Rafael Soriano and his missing slider

By James Wagner  |  07:16 AM ET, 08/29/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback, rafael soriano

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 08/28/2013

Ryan Mattheus returns to the Nationals

After a productive stint at Syracuse, Ryan Mattheus returned to the Nationals and left behind a mechanical glitch.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 08/28/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 08/27/2013

Ryan Zimmerman will stay at third base this year, and he should stay next year, too

Ryan Zimmerman has had a rough year at third base, but the Nationals shouldn't be ready to move him quite yet.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 08/27/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 08/26/2013

The Nationals look ahead to an easy schedule

The Nationals focused not on their ruinous eighth Sunday, but rather on a productive road trip and an easy schedule coming next.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 08/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:10 AM ET, 08/23/2013

Tanner Roark's homecoming

The right-hander and Illinois native pitched in front of his family and friends in Wrigley.

By James Wagner  |  08:10 AM ET, 08/23/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:01 AM ET, 08/22/2013

Scott Hairston on hitting left-handers, pinch-hitting

The right-handed hitter feels like he hadn't done the most with his opportunities yet as a National -- until Wednesday.

By James Wagner  |  08:01 AM ET, 08/22/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:06 AM ET, 08/21/2013

Dan Haren's second-half surge continues

Since July 1, Haren has a 2.16 ERA and become one of the sure things about this team. He hasn't thought about next season.

By James Wagner  |  08:06 AM ET, 08/21/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 09:14 AM ET, 08/20/2013

What is going on with Jordan Zimmermann?

The all-star hasn't pitched like normal over the past two months, a problem he attributes to command issues.

By James Wagner  |  09:14 AM ET, 08/20/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 06:09 AM ET, 08/19/2013

Bryce Harper's eventful weekend in Atlanta

Two hit-by-pitches, plenty of boos, a brief encounter with an unpire

By James Wagner  |  06:09 AM ET, 08/19/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 08/16/2013

Stephen Strasburg is feeling stronger as shutdown anniversary nears

Almost a year after getting shut down, Stephen Strasburg is pitching more effectively and feeling stronger despite less media glare.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 08/16/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback, Stephen Strasburg

Posted at 08:22 AM ET, 08/15/2013

The struggles of the Nationals bullpen

The starters have a 2.34 ERA during this homestand and the bullpen has a 5.50 ERA.

By James Wagner  |  08:22 AM ET, 08/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 12:56 AM ET, 08/14/2013

The Nationals' focus on the Reds

With the Braves out of reach, Washington has slim odds of claiming a wild-card spot from Cincinnati.

By James Wagner  |  12:56 AM ET, 08/14/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:45 AM ET, 08/13/2013

Ian Desmond comes to play

Shortstop plays hard every day he's in the Nationals' lineup, which is almost every game each season.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:45 AM ET, 08/13/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 08/12/2013

The Nationals' offense shows promising signs

The Nats have a chance to make September interesting. If they do, it will start not with clutch hits, but with base runners.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 08/12/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:33 AM ET, 08/09/2013

The Nationals' chances in the wild-card race

By James Wagner  |  07:33 AM ET, 08/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 08/08/2013

Tanner Roark debuts

Much of his neighborhood back in Illinois watching, the right-handed tosses two scoreless innings with only 15 pitches.

By James Wagner  |  07:01 AM ET, 08/08/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 08/07/2013

Davey Johnson on Ryan Zimmerman possibly moving to first base

Davey Johnson did not the dismiss the idea of Ryan Zimmerman one day -- maybe one day soon -- shifting across the diamond.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 08/07/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback, Ryan Zimmerman

Posted at 07:33 AM ET, 08/06/2013

With Ross Ohlendorf out, who could the Nationals use in the rotation?

Ross Ohlendorf could still return in time before Taylor Jordan is shut down. If not, Washington feels confident turning to the minor leagues.

By James Wagner  |  07:33 AM ET, 08/06/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 08/05/2013

As the Braves come to Washington, the Nationals focus on themselves first

The Nationals have a chance to make up ground in a division race that's currently a blowout, but they know playing better matters most.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 08/05/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 08/02/2013

Danny Espinosa tweaks swing, continues to grind at Syracuse

The infielder is hitting .200 after nearly six weeks back in the minor leagues with a shortened swing and new hitting approach.

By James Wagner  |  07:01 AM ET, 08/02/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Danny Espinosa, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 08/01/2013

Adam LaRoche trying to pull out of slump

Adam LaRoche is always a streaky hitter, but the slumps have outweighed the hot streaks this season.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 08/01/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 07/31/2013

Jayson Werth's best month as a National

Jayson Werth has been perhaps the Nationals' best hitter and a rare bright spot in an offensively challenged season.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 07/31/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:23 AM ET, 07/30/2013

When will Ryan Zimmerman hit his hot streak?

The Nationals' third baseman has yet to his his trademark summer hot streak, which could help propel the team's offense.

By James Wagner  |  07:23 AM ET, 07/30/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 07/29/2013

Why the Nationals are still alive

Just because the Nationals have underperformed so far does not mean they can or should be written off.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 07/29/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 07/26/2013

Steve Lombardozzi makes the most of his chance

Receiving a rare start, Steve Lombardozzi sparked the Nationals' 9-7 victory yesterday.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 07/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 07/25/2013

The Nationals' struggles limiting base stealers

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 07/25/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:02 AM ET, 07/24/2013

Taylor Jordan learning well on the fly

Jordan has a 3.68 ERA and has pitched better than many of his numbers would suggest.

By James Wagner  |  08:02 AM ET, 07/24/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 07/23/2013

Can a hitting coach change make a difference?

Nationals players felt and took the blame for Rick Eckstein's firing. In doing so, some offered differing views of a hitting coach's impact.

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 07/23/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:01 AM ET, 07/22/2013

Some numbers behind the Nationals' season

The Nationals have underperformed in many ways so far this season and they've posted some wacky numbers because of it.

By James Wagner  |  08:01 AM ET, 07/22/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:04 AM ET, 07/19/2013

Story lines to watch in the Nationals' second half

Nationals begin the 67-game final leg of the season tonight at home vs. the Dodgers.

By James Wagner  |  08:04 AM ET, 07/19/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 07/18/2013

Jordan Zimmermann's non-existent two-seam fastball

Pitch tracking technology suggests Jordan Zimmermann throws an occasional two-seam fastball, but that's not actually the case.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 07/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 07/17/2013

Bryce Harper and Jordan Zimmermann soak in the All-Star Game

"It's something I've always wanted to do," Zimmermann said.

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 07/17/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 07/16/2013

That time the Nationals were interested in Chris Davis

In 2011, the Nationals were interested in Chris Davis. He was traded to the Rangers and, well, the rest is history.

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 07/16/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 07/15/2013

A prediction for the Home Run Derby

Drew Storen has called two of Bryce Harper's most memorable home runs of the season. Now, he takes a stab at the Home Run Derby.

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 07/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 07/12/2013

Should the Nationals trade for a starter? It's complicated

The Nationals will have to consider many factors before they decide on their trade deadline strategy, but they should not rule out a rental.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 07/12/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:46 AM ET, 07/11/2013

Anthony Rendon and Wilson Ramos producing at the bottom of the lineup

The seventh and eighth spots in the Nationals order have proven to be tough and productive outs.

By James Wagner  |  07:46 AM ET, 07/11/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 07/10/2013

Taylor Jordan proving his mettle

The Nationals may need to count on the 24-year-old rookie in the second half and he has shown his poise.

By James Wagner  |  07:01 AM ET, 07/10/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 07/09/2013

Meet the new guy: Scott Hairston

After Monday's game, Hairston met with reporters for the first time and shared his thoughts on the trade, his season and role.

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 07/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback, Scott Hairston

Posted at 07:31 AM ET, 07/08/2013

Nationals have gained some ground and are hoping for more

A month ago, the Nationals trailed the Braves by eight games. Entering a four-game series against the Phillies, the lead is down to four.

By James Wagner  |  07:31 AM ET, 07/08/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:32 AM ET, 07/05/2013

Ian Desmond has been the Nationals' best player

Ian Desmond excelled after Davey Johnson moved him up in the lineup, but he has been excellent all season.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:32 AM ET, 07/05/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 07/04/2013

Davey Johnson on Danny Espinosa's struggles at Syracuse

The second baseman is hitting .094 at Class AAA Syracuse and the Davey Johnson had some pointed comments about his hitting woes.

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 07/04/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:42 AM ET, 07/03/2013

Stephen Strasburg is pitching far better than his record

The right-hander's stats rank among the game's best but he's betrayed by a 4-6 record.

By James Wagner  |  07:42 AM ET, 07/03/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 07/02/2013

Denard Span: 'I'm getting closer to where I need to be'

The leadoff hitter has strung together two strong days of at-bats and performances at the plate.

By Roman Stubbs  |  07:02 AM ET, 07/02/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:03 AM ET, 07/01/2013

Stephen Strasburg, Jordan Zimmermann and Gio Gonzalez are still the Nationals' key

Like last year, the best piece of the Nationals is their top three starters.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:03 AM ET, 07/01/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 06/28/2013

Stephen Strasburg finding confidence in arm despite lack of run support

Right-hander ranks last in the MLB in run support per start.

By Brandon Parker  |  07:02 AM ET, 06/28/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback, Stephen Strasburg

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 06/27/2013

Tyler Moore homers in first start since call-up from Class AAA

Despite struggles in Class AAA, Moore hopes Wednesday's blast will yield more positive results

By Brandon Parker  |  07:02 AM ET, 06/27/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 06/26/2013

Jayson Werth plays through the pain during key stretch for Nationals

Jayson Werth's decision to play through a groin injury helped the Nationals win Tuesday night.

By Brandon Parker  |  07:02 AM ET, 06/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:31 AM ET, 06/25/2013

Nationals' best chance to improve could be now

The Nationals have a favorable stretch of opponents, home games and the division have been mediocre of late.

By James Wagner  |  07:31 AM ET, 06/25/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 06/24/2013

Danny Espinosa playing shortstop at Syracuse

The Nationals have started playing Danny Espinosa at shortstop, which some have taken as a sign the Nats could be looking to trade him.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 06/24/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:44 AM ET, 06/21/2013

Jordan Zimmermann's all-star worthy resume

The Nats pitcher’s ERA ranks fifth in the National League and is tied for the major league lead in wins.

By James Wagner  |  07:44 AM ET, 06/21/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 06/20/2013

Gio Gonzalez helps deliver a comeback victory after rocky start

Gio Gonzalez fell behind 2-0 after two batters, then didn't allow a hit for seven innings.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 06/20/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:46 AM ET, 06/19/2013

Jayson Werth: 'You've got to show up tomorrow ready to eat somebody's face'

After yet another Nationals loss, the outfielder offers his thoughts on their position, their struggles and how to recover.

By James Wagner  |  07:46 AM ET, 06/19/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:20 AM ET, 06/18/2013

As Danny Espinosa rehabs, Anthony Rendon hits

Rendon is hitting well in the majors while Espinosa rehabs in Syracuse. What could happen next?

By James Wagner  |  08:20 AM ET, 06/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:31 AM ET, 06/17/2013

Nationals face old friend John Lannan

The Nationals face an old friend in the opening game of a crucial series.

By James Wagner  |  07:31 AM ET, 06/17/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:42 AM ET, 06/14/2013

Does Ian Desmond deserve to be in the All-Star Game?

As he continues his recent tear, the Nationals shortstop is making a case to be considered an all-star.

By James Wagner  |  07:42 AM ET, 06/14/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:05 AM ET, 06/13/2013

Observations from a memorable win: Ross Ohlendorf, Ian Desmond, Anthony Rendon

Ross Ohlendorf shines, Ian Desmond continues his recent surge and Anthony Rendon makes a case to move up in the batting order.

By James Wagner  |  08:05 AM ET, 06/13/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:36 AM ET, 06/12/2013

Nate Karns returns to Harrisburg with major league exprience

Karns returns to Class AA Harrisburg after three starts.

By James Wagner  |  07:36 AM ET, 06/12/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 06/11/2013

The Nationals' road ahead

A look at the remaining schedule, the wild card race and why a strong showing against the Rockies would help the Nationals' chances.

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 06/11/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 06:52 PM ET, 06/09/2013

How Rick Eckstein expects the Nationals' offense to come around

The Nats’ offensive woes may not be cured, but Sunday’s offensive output was a good start.

By Adam Kilgore  |  06:52 PM ET, 06/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:12 AM ET, 06/07/2013

The Nationals need Denard Span to get on base more

The Nationals have the worst on-base percentage and second lowest scoring offense, and more baserunners, especially atop the order, would help.

By James Wagner  |  08:12 AM ET, 06/07/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 06/06/2013

Ian Krol dazzles in nerve-wracking major league debut

The left-handed reliever, who had never pitched about Class AA, completed his unusual and relatively quick path to majors on Wednesday.

By James Wagner  |  07:01 AM ET, 06/06/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 06/05/2013

Jayson Werth returns: 'It's good to have him back'

After a day of moves that rearranged part of the composition of the Nationals roster, Jayson Werth was one of the faces the brought back stability.

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 06/05/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:31 AM ET, 06/04/2013

The trouble at the edges of the Nationals roster

Along with the Nationals' neon-light failings of injury and impotent hitting, many roster decisions have let them down.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:31 AM ET, 06/04/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 06/03/2013

Adam LaRoche knows what Danny Espinosa is going through

Adam LaRoche knows what it's like to have an injury produce no pain, but is clearly affecting you at the plate.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 06/03/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 05/31/2013

Stephen Strasburg taking improved mental outlook into Braves showdown

Stephen Strasburg has pitched like an ace since he refreshed his mental outlook.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 05/31/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 05/30/2013

Dan Haren's turn to face the hot-hitting Orioles in Camden Yards

The veteran right-hander will face the challenge of a top offense in their hitter-friendly stadium.

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 05/30/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:47 AM ET, 05/29/2013

The offense, and the bench, come to life but Davey Johnson keeps his beard

The offense, and the bench, produced the largest offensive outburst in nearly a month and a half -- but the manager keeps the beard.

By James Wagner  |  07:47 AM ET, 05/29/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 05/28/2013

Nationals' bats can't sustain momentum

Washington has had few sustained winning streaks as its offense has lagged.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 05/28/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback, offense

Posted at 08:03 AM ET, 05/24/2013

Here come the Phillies

The Washington Nationals and the Philadelphia Phillies will finally meet on the field this weekend.

By James Wagner  |  08:03 AM ET, 05/24/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 05/23/2013

Bryce Harper conquers the wall, at least for one day

Bryce Harper said he's still thinking about the fence when he drifts back for a fly ball, but it didn't prevent him from making a great catch Wednesday afternoon.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 05/23/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 05/22/2013

Stephen Strasburg pitches like an ace, for naught

Even if the Nationals collapsed late, Stephen Strasburg stepped up when the Nationals needed him.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 05/22/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 03:39 AM ET, 05/21/2013

Ryan Mattheus breaks throwing hand punching a locker, adds to bullpen disarray

Ryan Matteus broke his throwing hand after he punched a locker Sunday afternoon, further depleting the Nats' bullpen.

By Adam Kilgore  |  03:39 AM ET, 05/21/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 05/20/2013

The Nationals' bullpen is out of whack

The Nationals bullpen could use some minor tweaks to operate at full capacity.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 05/20/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 05/17/2013

Nationals take a step in the right direction

Led by Ryan Zimmerman and Adam LaRoche, the Nationals' offense showed signs of improvement.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 05/17/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:36 AM ET, 05/16/2013

Bryce Harper feeling 'terrible' after at-bat, could play Thursday

Bryce Harper’s status for Thursday’s game in San Diego is up in the air.

By Adam Kilgore  |  08:36 AM ET, 05/16/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Bryce Harper, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 05/15/2013

Nationals still waiting on Danny Espinosa to come around

Danny Espinosa is the Nationals' best option at second on paper, but how much longer can they wait for him to come around?

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 05/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 05/14/2013

Bryce Harper gives the Nationals another scare

Bryce Harper's mentality and hustle make him great, but could it also have a negative impact on his longevity?

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 05/14/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:59 AM ET, 05/13/2013

The Nationals head west

The Nationals head to the West Coast for a 10-game trip, the beginning of a stretch in which they play 20 games in 21 days.

By James Wagner  |  07:59 AM ET, 05/13/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:00 AM ET, 05/10/2013

On the Nationals bullpen's recent lack of work

Because of strong starting pitching in the past week or more, the bullpen has seen little work.

By James Wagner  |  08:00 AM ET, 05/10/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 05/09/2013

Should Stephen Strasburg have a personal catcher?

His numbers have been better with Wilson Ramos behind the plate but Davey Johnson doesn't want to use personal catchers for any Nationals starter.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 05/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:48 AM ET, 05/08/2013

Jordan Zimmermann and his struggles with extra rest

The

By James Wagner  |  07:48 AM ET, 05/08/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 05/07/2013

After World Series predictions, Nationals and Tigers meet on the field

Many predicted a Nationals-Tigers World Series, and now they'll meet in the regular season.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 05/07/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 05/06/2013

The Nationals' offense may be coming alive

Washington’s lineup showed many positive signs this weekend, especially Adam LaRoche and Danny Espinosa

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 05/06/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:05 AM ET, 05/03/2013

Anthony Rendon returns to the minors, already a major leaguer

By James Wagner  |  08:05 AM ET, 05/03/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:53 AM ET, 05/02/2013

Rafael Soriano's improvement

By James Wagner  |  07:53 AM ET, 05/02/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 05/01/2013

Jordan Zimmermann to the rescue

The Nationals will turn to Jordan Zimmermann, who's coming off the best start of his career.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 05/01/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:58 AM ET, 04/30/2013

The Nationals' early struggles against the Braves

By James Wagner  |  07:58 AM ET, 04/30/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:31 AM ET, 04/29/2013

The Nationals' next crack at the now-reeling Braves starts tonight

The Nationals will face a Braves team that has struggled since it left Washington on a tear.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:31 AM ET, 04/29/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:54 AM ET, 04/26/2013

Gio Gonzalez improves with aggressiveness

It was a simple and obvious adjustment, but Gio Gonzalez fired fastballs and first-pitch strikes and it worked.

By James Wagner  |  07:54 AM ET, 04/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:02 AM ET, 04/25/2013

Is there hope for the Nationals offense?

Davey Johnson will tweak the lineup again on Thursday. But, yes, there are several reasons to believe the offense will snap its streak.

By James Wagner  |  08:02 AM ET, 04/25/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 04/24/2013

A closer look at the Nationals lineup

Davey Johnson called for some changes to Wednesday's lineup. We look at the players who are hitting well and the others who are scuffling.

By James Wagner  |  07:02 AM ET, 04/24/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 04/23/2013

Dan Haren improved, but not enough: 'I'm going to be better'

Davey Johnson thinks Haren took a positive step forward in Monday's loss but the veteran right-hander still isn't completely pleased with his results.

By James Wagner  |  07:01 AM ET, 04/23/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 04/19/2013

Stephen Strasburg vs. Matt Harvey highlights Nationals-Mets series

For tonight, Matt Harvey will provide a challenge for a Nationals team that righted itself with a series win in Miami.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 04/19/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:56 AM ET, 04/18/2013

Kurt Suzuki's steady presence in Wilson Ramos's absence

Suzuki has started every day since Ramos hurt his hamstring and the Nationals haven't lost a step.

By James Wagner  |  07:56 AM ET, 04/18/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:56 AM ET, 04/17/2013

What's behind Ryan Zimmerman's throwing errors?

Nationals third baseman has made four throwing errors since Friday, including a costly one Tuesday.

By James Wagner  |  07:56 AM ET, 04/17/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:42 AM ET, 04/16/2013

Davey Johnson's difficult balance of finding playing time for the bench

It's a difficult task but the veterans players understand his reasoning even if they don't like to sit.

By James Wagner  |  07:42 AM ET, 04/16/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 04/15/2013

Denard Span isn't so sure about the whole double-switch thing

After playing his entire career in the American League, Denard Span was left wondering why he was coming out of the game in a standard double-switch.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 04/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:52 AM ET, 04/12/2013

The Braves are coming to Washington

The new-look rivals face off in a marquee three-game series for the first time this season.

By James Wagner  |  07:52 AM ET, 04/12/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 04/11/2013

Danny Espinosa's new attitude, Ian Desmond's hot streak lift the Nationals

The bottom half of the Nationals lineup carried them to a second straight victory, namely Danny Espinosa and Ian Desmond.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 04/11/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Bryce Harper, Danny Espinosa, Ian Desmond, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:03 AM ET, 04/10/2013

Denard Span, Jayson Werth and the effect of seeing pitches

Denard Span's arrival has given the Nationals a new kind of offensive identity.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:03 AM ET, 04/10/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:02 AM ET, 04/09/2013

What did we learn in the Nationals' first week?

What did we learn in the Nationals' first week?

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:02 AM ET, 04/09/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:01 AM ET, 04/08/2013

The Reds take Round 1 from the Nationals

Takeaways from the Nationals' challenging series in Cincinnati, plus minor league updates and more.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:01 AM ET, 04/08/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:32 AM ET, 04/05/2013

Now the Nationals face a stiffer challenge: the Reds

After a season-opening series against the lowly Marlins, the Nationals get a true test of their talent.

By James Wagner  |  07:32 AM ET, 04/05/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:32 AM ET, 04/04/2013

How Davey Johnson will use the reconfigured bullpen

Drew Storen made his season debut in the eighth inning on Wednesday and Rafael Soriano closed out his second straight game.

By James Wagner  |  07:32 AM ET, 04/04/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:42 AM ET, 04/03/2013

An interesting look at Gio Gonzalez's season

Did actually the left-hander actually improve last season? What can he improve on this year?

By James Wagner  |  07:42 AM ET, 04/03/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:14 AM ET, 04/02/2013

Denard Span debuts as a National

The new center fielder debuts, goes 1 for 4 and is still learning the confines of Nationals Park.

By James Wagner  |  07:14 AM ET, 04/02/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:52 AM ET, 03/29/2013

Nationals closer Rafael Soriano on pitching

The Nationals' new closer discusses his velocity, control and pitches.

By James Wagner  |  07:52 AM ET, 03/29/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:36 AM ET, 03/15/2013

Nationals pacing themselves through long spring training

Nationals pacing themselves through long spring

By James Wagner  |  07:36 AM ET, 03/15/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:40 AM ET, 03/14/2013

More on the shape of the Nationals bullpen

The shape of the Nationals bullpen

By James Wagner  |  07:40 AM ET, 03/14/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:32 AM ET, 03/13/2013

What Gio Gonzalez, Ross Detwiler learned from the WBC

The

By James Wagner  |  07:32 AM ET, 03/13/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:53 AM ET, 03/12/2013

Matt Skole drawing attention in Nationals camp

The Nationals infielder has impressed Manager Davey Johnson with his athleticism and bat.

By James Wagner  |  07:53 AM ET, 03/12/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 02/26/2013

Ryan Mattheus's focus this spring: work on facing left-handed hitters

Ryan Mattheus's focus this spring: work on facing left-handed hitters

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 02/26/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:00 AM ET, 10/15/2012

Thanks for following along this season

Our weekday morning post will go on hiatus until spring training but keep following along here for offseason Nationals news.

By James Wagner  |  08:00 AM ET, 10/15/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 08:00 AM ET, 10/11/2012

How Nationals veterans will approach NLDS Game 4

The mostly young Nationals are in a situation they have never experienced before, and veterans like Mark DeRosa, think they treat Thursday no differently than before.

By James Wagner  |  08:00 AM ET, 10/11/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:15 AM ET, 10/10/2012

What makes the St. Louis Cardinals hitters so good

Nationals explain what makes the Cardinals lineup and its hitters so potent.

By James Wagner  |  07:15 AM ET, 10/10/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 10/02/2012

Mike Rizzo, architect of the Nationals, enjoys the NL East title

The general manager, who worked his way up from a scout to assistant GM to head man, savors the moment, a product of the hard work and patience through the tough years.

By James Wagner  |  07:00 AM ET, 10/02/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 09/27/2012

John Lannan defies his history in Philadelphia, pitches Nationals a step closer

Manager Davey Johnson ignored history when he lined up John Lannan to pitch against the Phillies, and then Lannan defied it when he took the mound.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 09/27/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  John Lannan, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 09/26/2012

The Nationals still don’t need to panic about the National League East

We don’t need to discuss the Nationals’ doom scenarios, not just yet, not after their 6-3 loss to the Phillies last night.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 09/26/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 09/20/2012

Sorting out the Nationals’ doubleheader and all that happened

The Nationals played 18 eventful innings, key players returned from injuries and showed progress, Bryce Harper made history and more on that blown call.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 09/20/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 09/19/2012

With wins Wednesday, Nationals could claim first postseason berth for Washington since 1933

If the Nationals beat the Dodgers twice, they could pad their division lead and claim first postseason appearance for Washington baseball team since 1933.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 09/19/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:34 AM ET, 09/18/2012

Nationals still in firm control of playoff fate despite sweep

It would take an epic collapse for the Nationals to miss the playoffs, and a large one for them to lose the division title, with 16 games remaining.

By James Wagner  |  07:34 AM ET, 09/18/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 09/14/2012

Ryan Zimmerman continues to erase slow, painful beginning: ‘that was a trying time’

Short summary of story

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 09/14/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:30 AM ET, 09/11/2012

Gio Gonzalez: a leading Cy Young Award candidate?

The left-hander was the first to 19 wins in the majors, his ERA is below 3.00 and has nearly 200 strikeouts.

By James Wagner  |  07:30 AM ET, 09/11/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 09/10/2012

The importance of this week for the Nationals

Dropping two games to the Marlins hurt a little but it's not alarming. The Nationals can control the importance of the Braves series with their upcoming play against the Mets.

By James Wagner  |  07:00 AM ET, 09/10/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 09/06/2012

Danny Espinosa key to the Nationals’ offensive outburst

Danny Espinosa has put his first half behind him and become one of the top two-way second basemen in the league.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 09/06/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Danny Espinosa, danny espinosa; ian desmond; morning brushback; washington nationals; nationals beat cubs;, Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 09/04/2012

Nationals lead the majors in another category: the fewest ejections

Even with Bryce Harper's ejection, the Nationals lead the majors with the fewest ejections this season.

By James Wagner  |  07:00 AM ET, 09/04/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Morning Brushback

Posted at 07:00 AM ET, 08/31/2012

Jayson Werth, Bryce Harper give Nationals a dynamic 1-2 punch

Johnson did not envision Werth as a leadoff hitter this season, but he has been a perfect fit as the Nationals have played with a full complement for the first time all year.

By Adam Kilgore  |  07:00 AM ET, 08/31/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  bryce harper, jayson werth, leadoff hitter, Morning Brushback, washington nationals

Posted at 06:00 AM ET, 05/20/2011

Few big league starters receive less run support than Livan Hernandez

Only three starting pitchers in the major leagues have garnered a worse run support average than Hernandez this season.

By Steve Yanda  |  06:00 AM ET, 05/20/2011 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
Tags:  Brushback