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Game 47: Nats at Cubs

May 27, 2015, 6:05 PM EST

USA Today Sports Images

We’ve seen a pair of nip-and-tuck, 1-run games so far in this series between the Nationals and Cubs, with each team winning once. And now for the series finale, we get a great pitching matchup of the two guys who got the biggest free-agent contracts last winter: Max Scherzer and Jon Lester.

Scherzer has been everything the Nats could have wanted and more so far, entering this start with a 5-3 record, 1.67 ERA, 72 strikeouts and only nine walks. Lester, meanwhile, got off to a bit of a rocky April but has been dominant in May (4-0, 1.85). Keep an eye on the Nationals’ running game tonight, because Lester does have an issue holding guys on base.

Dan Uggla and Tyler Moore get the starts tonight against the lefty, though there’s not a whole lot of history to go on there. Uggla is 2-for-8 with a homer in his career against Lester; Moore is 1-for-3.

Enjoy the game and the conversation, and please check back in the morning for some remote analysis…

WASHINGTON NATIONALS at CHICAGO CUBS
Where:
Wrigley Field, Chicago
Gametime: 8:05 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN2, MLB Network (outside D.C. market), MLB.tv
Radio: 106.7 FM, 1500 AM, XM 89/869
Weather: Partly cloudy, 71 degrees, Wind 5 mph in from CF

NATIONALS (27-19)
CF Denard Span
SS Ian Desmond
3B Yunel Escobar
RF Bryce Harper
1B Ryan Zimmerman
C Wilson Ramos
2B Dan Uggla
LF Tyler Moore
RHP Max Scherzer

CUBS (25-20)
LF Chris Coghlan
1B Anthony Rizzo
3B Kris Bryant
CF Dexter Fowler
SS Starlin Castro
RF Junior Lake
C David Ross
LHP Jon Lester
2B Addison Russell

UMPIRES
HP Hunter Wendelstedt
1B Bob Davidson (cc)
2B Ryan Blakney
3B Mike DiMuro

248 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. Eugene in Oregon - May 27, 2015 at 6:08 PM

    GYFNG!

  2. masterfishkeeper - May 27, 2015 at 6:13 PM

    Our running game will be limited with Moore and Uggla, but maybe their hitting will make up for it.

    • adcwonk - May 27, 2015 at 8:01 PM

      Well, given the running game last night . . . 😉

      • Eugene in Oregon - May 27, 2015 at 8:14 PM

        All the more reason to run…they’re not expecting it.

  3. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 6:16 PM

    Please for the love of everything you hold dear, DO NOT TELL YUNI THAT LESTER CAN’T HOLD RUNNERS!

    Other than that, GO NATS!

  4. letswin3 - May 27, 2015 at 6:17 PM

    ThreeStar game tonight with these pitchers.

    On a separate note, maybe one of you can help me out regarding Rendon possibly playing second base when he returns. I haven’t read the reasoning on that, although I’m guessing that the club feels that Escobar hasn’t had regular season seasoning at second, and is looking very good at third, while Rendon can fit interchangeably at either. Am I on the right track here?

    • natsjackinfl - May 27, 2015 at 6:30 PM

      All indications are leaving Escobar at 3rd because Rendon is experienced at both 2nd and 3rd and Escobar isn’t.

      The plan in ST was for Escobar to get all his playing time at 2nd to prepare him for regular season but Rendon’s injury changed all that.

      They don’t want to move Escobar now that he’s comfortable at 3rd.

      • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 8:14 PM

        I don’t like it. Rendon is elite at third and esco as a SS should be better at second. He has been average at 3rd defensively (eye test)

      • letswin3 - May 27, 2015 at 11:41 PM

        Thanks, that’s what I figured.

  5. Joe Seamhead - May 27, 2015 at 6:21 PM

    In his entire ML career Yunel Escobar has 32 stolen bases and has been caught 25 times!

    ’nuff said.

    • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 6:28 PM

      Wow. And he almost got himself picked off after his 7th successful SB last night!

      Stick to solid ABs and fielding, Escobar…both are a huge help all on their own.

      • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 6:31 PM

        Er, make that on his 32nd SB. For a second there I thought he had 25 CS in 32 attempts!

      • Joe Seamhead - May 27, 2015 at 6:35 PM

        Eric, including last night he has 32 steals in 57 attempts, a still bad 56% success rate.Let’s face it, he doesn’t have wheels.

      • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 6:39 PM

        And/or he’s terrible at getting jumps. I mean, he was probably a full second early when he took off for third.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:28 PM

        The pre-game with Jags and MW was very to the point on MW didn’t know what Escobar was trying to do there.

      • rlndtln - May 27, 2015 at 8:31 PM

        He should know by now.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:33 PM

        He should.

      • rlndtln - May 27, 2015 at 8:34 PM

        Tonite was the night to use Dannny.He should play against all lefties until Rendon comes back.and we lose plenty in the field.

  6. Steady Eddie - May 27, 2015 at 6:56 PM

    Wasn’t Wendelstedt the ump who went out of his way to toss Harper from third against the Pirates in Pittsburgh a couple of years ago? A real gem, that guy.

    • npb99 - May 27, 2015 at 8:04 PM

      In no other sport does the ump get away with acting as such a jerk, especially against rising stars. NBA refereeing is often dismal, but they know what sells tickets. In the over-regulated NFL, they might throw a flag for various perceived offenses, but they won’t throw you out of a game unless you physically touch the umpire. In MLB (which I love, and these other two I mostly ignore), the umps feel free to toss a player for basically a bad attitude.

    • manassasnatsfan - May 28, 2015 at 12:48 AM

      no that was Herschbeck. I was at that game. Balking Bob Davidson was the plate ump.

  7. natsfan1a - May 27, 2015 at 7:28 PM

    It’s gonna be DVR city for me tonight, given the later starting time. Here’s hoping for a happy game results email tomorrow morning. Go, MAX! Go, NATS!!

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 8:16 PM

      U r an early bird!!

  8. mauimo22 - May 27, 2015 at 7:52 PM

    Let’s score some RUNS and win this series!
    GO NATS!

  9. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 8:19 PM

    Worst comment module ever. Get one like the post or use diqus

  10. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:21 PM

    The 96 reachback fastball on 3-2 to Coghlan was a thing of beauty.

  11. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:22 PM

    That 1-1 pitch to Bryant was the same one that Escobar was K’d on. Come on Blue.

  12. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 8:23 PM

    That was a strike

  13. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:24 PM

    Nats Strike Zone: @NationalsUmp
    Call hurts #Nationals
    Strike 3 should be ball 2
    Top 1 Lester vs Escobar
    16% call same
    2.1in from edge pic.twitter.com/xS0566X8JK

  14. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:26 PM

    I want to hear Carp call out a few times tonight “See you laaater”!

    • adcwonk - May 27, 2015 at 8:30 PM

      But wind is blowing in, no?

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:33 PM

        Right to left.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:37 PM

        Did you see what Lester just did!

      • adcwonk - May 27, 2015 at 8:39 PM

        The wind is our friend today. A lot of loud outs against Scherzer thus far.

        In the meantime, Carp & FP noted that Lester is now, lifetime, 0-for-58, the most AB before a hit of anybody in MLB.

        But, sheesh, he put some nice wood on that one! Thank, you, Spanny!

  15. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:30 PM

  16. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 8:30 PM

    Dear web admin:

    As long as you keep the report button by the reply your are asking for jumbled comments. This makes people leave. A lot have already. First you force us to open a wordpress account (not required) place a default WordPress bar on top of my browser, then insist on this awful comment mod. This is the definition of bad ux

    Less users equals less revenue from advertisers. Just fix it, it’s very simple to do.

    End rant

    • dcwx61 - May 27, 2015 at 8:37 PM

      +1

    • Joe Seamhead - May 27, 2015 at 8:39 PM

      + 1 x at least a zillion!

  17. rlndtln - May 27, 2015 at 8:32 PM

    We need Rendon and Werth back asap.Tonite gives you a taste of playoff pitching.

  18. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 8:37 PM

    Max was very lucky

  19. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 8:51 PM

    “Z”move – lol! I love it

  20. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:51 PM

    Good, the comments are back in order. Bottom of the 3rd inning. 1 out.

  21. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:53 PM

    Good, Rizzo called a strike on check swing just like Harper was. Consistency if nothing else.

  22. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 8:53 PM

    So what’s the over under on TOOTBLANS tonight? 2?

  23. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:54 PM

    If the ball was blowing out, that’s a 3 run homer by Bryant.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 8:56 PM

      *If the wind was blowing out….

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 9:02 PM

      Not even close. He missed it

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:06 PM

        If the wind was blowing out last night, that’s a HR

  24. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 8:57 PM

    Wow 97

  25. Drew - May 27, 2015 at 8:59 PM

    Wow, love to see Max bring the express.

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 9:01 PM

      Yea. He’s got some nice reach back power.

  26. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:06 PM

    Thank you Addison Russell

  27. Drew - May 27, 2015 at 9:06 PM

    Thanks very much.

  28. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:10 PM

    Nice to see Jon Lester getting rattled by the error.

  29. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 9:12 PM

    UGH! I HATE it when a ball is called strike 3.

  30. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:12 PM

    Should be bases loaded and 1 out right now

  31. texnat1 - May 27, 2015 at 9:13 PM

    Awful call against Uggla. Good at bat though. Love that they are getting Lester’s pitch count up this inning.

    • rlndtln - May 27, 2015 at 9:21 PM

      Good at bat.?How can MW play Uggla over Danny against left handed pitching.Danny is a 300 hitter righty.and a much much better defender.Use Uggla occasionally when a righty pitches.

  32. Joe Seamhead - May 27, 2015 at 9:14 PM

    Surprise, surprise…Hunter Wendelstedt is all over the place with the strike zone.

  33. Steady Eddie - May 27, 2015 at 9:21 PM

    And Moore only had to swing on that 3-2 outside pitch from Lester because of Wendelstedt’s disgraceful wide strike zone on which he punched out Uggla. Should be 2-0 now with bases loaded and one out.

    Give us the d*** ball and strike robots!

    I wrote before the game started that Wendelstedt stunk.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:23 PM

      I don’t want robots but I will say it again, you should be able to use your challenge once for a ball/strike call. That was a huge one in this game.

    • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 9:33 PM

      And Escobar got robbed in the exact same location as Uggla.

    • knoxvillenat - May 27, 2015 at 9:38 PM

      Eddie, you asked earlier if Wendelstedt was the ump who threw Harper out of the game in Pittsburgh a couple years ago…..the answer is no, it was John Hirschbeck (sp?)……and it was a totally classless move by Hirschbeck as Harper didn’t do anything that warranted being tossed from that game. And if I recall correctly, it was in the first inning. I’m pretty sure 35,000 people didn’t go to the game that afternoon to watch John Hirschbeck (sp?) umpire at third base.

      • Steady Eddie - May 27, 2015 at 9:56 PM

        Thanks — I keep getting the two confused.

        But I’m sure this wasn’t the first time Wendelstedt has been a jerk vs the Nats generally.

        Meanwhile, Max says, “Expanded strike zone? I don’t need no stinkin’ expanded strike zone!”

  34. AlexandriaNatFan - May 27, 2015 at 9:30 PM

    i’ll say it again – I have not been impressed with the umps this year. And yeah, W-stedt has always been a wild card of sorts.

    But I do love our pitchers getting base hits.

    • Joe Seamhead - May 27, 2015 at 9:48 PM

      In all my years I have never heard anybody say that they thought that the umps had a good year. Personally, I hate all of the replay reviews and it’s the last thing that I want more of. If you get an automated strike zone the game will be changed in ways that none of us can even grok. Think about how batters would prepare and how pitchers that live by throwing out of the zone wouldn’t stand a prayer.It’s a bad idea, I tell you.

      • AlexandriaNatFan - May 27, 2015 at 10:38 PM

        Actually this is the first year I’ve ever really thought this to a consistent extent. Do some games have bad calls etc in other seasons? Sure. But I’m saying across the board, not just Nats games etc.

  35. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:33 PM

    Desi doubles and now you wonder if he does that if Scherzer was called safe at 2nd.

    • rlndtln - May 27, 2015 at 9:35 PM

      I wonder why we do not play small ball up 1-0 with scherzer on the mound.Span should have bunted and you never know what happens when you put it in play.2-0 would have been huge.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:36 PM

        Generally you don’t play small ball with your pitcher as the lead runner but with Scherzer, who knows, he likes to run.

      • rlndtln - May 27, 2015 at 9:44 PM

        Why?He had to run the same when Span hit the grounder.

  36. TimDz - May 27, 2015 at 9:34 PM

    Blue just dorked the Nats out of a run….don’t care what FP says..

  37. exposremains - May 27, 2015 at 9:35 PM

    Why is it not reviewable?

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:37 PM

      They told him he was out on the “neighborhood play” which isn’t reviewable

      • knoxvillenat - May 27, 2015 at 9:40 PM

        So why isn’t the “neighborhood play” reviewable? Seems to me that should be reviewable.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:45 PM

        Then it wouldn’t be a neighborhood play as in the neighborhood play you don’t have to physically touch the bag. They said they were keeping that sacred due to safety, but I hear what you’re saying as I’ve seen timing plays like that reviewed.

      • exposremains - May 27, 2015 at 9:42 PM

        Oh I thought it was now. Thanks! I dont think it was a neighborhood play because Scherzer was no where close and he was off the bag because of the bad feed.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:52 PM

        Exactly. That’s why it was a BS call.

      • knoxvillenat - May 27, 2015 at 9:51 PM

        Steve,

        They review bang bang plays at first, they review close plays at the plate, they review check swings……all of which happen in a split second. So why not review the “neighborhood play”? I’m willing to bet that most neighborhood plays don’t involve the middle infielder actually touching the bag.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:54 PM

        Basically you’re saying there should be no neighborhood play any more and I agree. Players now are careful to touch 2nd base so they aren’t subject to a video challenge.

        That shouldn’t have been a “neighborhood play” with Scherzer running.

        It was just a poor call and the umps covering each other.

      • manassasnatsfan - May 28, 2015 at 12:53 AM

        i thought that was one of the rule changes, that the neighborhood play was now reviewable.

  38. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:45 PM

    See, there’s a “See you laaater” from Carp!

  39. knoxvillenat - May 27, 2015 at 9:47 PM

    Oppo boppo!

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:49 PM

      Yes sir. Classic Oppo Boppo!!!! The boy is hitterish!!!!

  40. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:47 PM

    Wow, Harper changed bats in that AB to his “Utley” and he hit that HR!

  41. TimDz - May 27, 2015 at 9:49 PM

    Bryce: I got yer breeze blowin’ in right here….

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:51 PM

      It’s not blowing in as far as I could tell. It’s been a slight RF to LF breeze.

      • manassasnatsfan - May 28, 2015 at 12:57 AM

        according to the flags from left to the Nats dugout.

  42. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:50 PM

    That’s not an error on that Uggla grounder. Tough backhand.

  43. Drew - May 27, 2015 at 9:50 PM

    Astonishing.
    27 to reach 100 at age 22.
    682 from Henry Aaron.

    • rlndtln - May 27, 2015 at 9:52 PM

      imagine how many Harp would hit if he played 81 games here.

      • Eugene in Oregon - May 27, 2015 at 9:55 PM

        Imagine if he played at Coors.

  44. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 9:54 PM

    Nats Strike Zone @NationalsUmp · 4m 4 minutes ago
    Call hurts #Nationals
    Strike 2 should be ball 2
    Top 6 Lester vs Ramos
    18% call same
    1.6in from edge

  45. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:01 PM

    I ❤ Max Scherzer, and I'm proud to admit it.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:02 PM

      I respect that.

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:15 PM

      I. Getting a contact in one eye to be more like him

      • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:25 PM

        Lol, nice.

      • npb99 - May 27, 2015 at 10:28 PM

        +1

  46. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:02 PM

    Re: the zone, seems Scherzer is getting some pretty decent leeway, too, and he’s working it.

    • Steady Eddie - May 27, 2015 at 10:14 PM

      Per NationalsUmp, just against Fowler for some reason. Max did get a couple of generous calls in that one AB, and one against Fowler earlier. But also got a ball called n an earlier Bryant AB on a pitch almost 3 inches inside the zone.

  47. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:03 PM

    Scherzer learned many things from Verlander. I wish Strasburg would have done the same. When you use that reachback fastball as an extra pitch, it’s just one more weapon in the repertoire.

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:17 PM

      Love that u used past tense there

  48. Danny - May 27, 2015 at 10:08 PM

    Dez looking. Span ever going to steal this year?

  49. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:08 PM

    Why does FP keep saying Lester can’t throw to first?

  50. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:10 PM

    Max is sick

  51. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:11 PM

    Escobar a split second from perfectly executing that hit.

  52. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:17 PM

    I would like to express my deepest gratitude to Mike Rizzo and the Lerner family for bringing Max Scherzer to this team. He is an absolute joy to watch.

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:20 PM

      A true ace. We never reLly had one.

    • tcostant - May 27, 2015 at 10:24 PM

      Ditto there. Just for fun today, I re-read the Boswell article when we sign Max, he said it makes much better, he was right. Wasn’t a huge fan of the signing at the time, but I am now.

  53. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:19 PM

    Strikeout leader max!!!

  54. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:22 PM

    Not grace!!! Nooooo!!

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:40 PM

      Yeah, a little surprising to put the kid in a leverage spot.

  55. TimDz - May 27, 2015 at 10:22 PM

    Whoever sponsors the Strikeout promo (Blue Cross/Blue Shield?) should request that Max change his jersey number to 38…win/win…..
    Sorry SS……

  56. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:22 PM

    I enjoy games when Scherz and JZim pitch and then those night’s where Gio Gonzalez is attacking. It’s something about pitchers with the letter Z in their name. Does Fizter spell his name with a Z? Strazburg?

  57. Eugene in Oregon - May 27, 2015 at 10:23 PM

    Off topic, but uring the pitching change…best opening sentences of a NYTimes editorial I’ve seen in a long time…

    “FIFA, soccer’s global governing body, has always hoped to get America more involved in their sport. Well, they’ve succeeded…”

    • mnmindc - May 27, 2015 at 11:03 PM

      That’s fabulous! And what a story. Makes Deflategate seem so trivial! (Well I guess it was always trivial but I for one loved seeing Brady squirm).

  58. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:24 PM

    Harper’s so hot they bring in a LOOGY just to walk him.

    • knoxvillenat - May 27, 2015 at 10:28 PM

      Now that is sick….

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:33 PM

      That is funny! Good one!

      • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:49 PM

        Thanks 🙂

  59. TimDz - May 27, 2015 at 10:24 PM

    Time to change your handle to Schlep Rock….

    • chrisrw109nats - May 27, 2015 at 11:04 PM

      Hey Natty? He is a top 10 in terms NL in RBI. Hush.

  60. tcostant - May 27, 2015 at 10:28 PM

    Let’s see how much MW has learned, the correct move is double swith and get Uggla out of the game for Desi, while getting Danny in the pitchers slot (Assuming the pitcher doesn’t hit here).

    • knoxvillenat - May 27, 2015 at 10:29 PM

      +1

      • tcostant - May 27, 2015 at 10:39 PM

        He just realized his error and did it now.

  61. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:32 PM

    Matt Grace will start the 8th. Interesting.

    • TimDz - May 27, 2015 at 10:33 PM

      He’ll go 1 2 3 here …..

      • TimDz - May 27, 2015 at 10:34 PM

        or not…..

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:34 PM

        Unfortunately not.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:38 PM

        Too much faith going back to a young pitcher who struggled the night before. I would have brought him in for a Low Lev spot not a Med to Hi Lev spot.

        Now he’s created a bit of a tough spot here. 2 on and nobody out.

  62. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:33 PM

    That is some filthy swing & miss tonight from Scherzer.

    • chrisrw109nats - May 27, 2015 at 11:25 PM

      Fun fact 13 strikeouts and only one was looking.

      Filthy compilation on Nats Xtra.

      Fbs at 92 and 98. Slider at 86 and curve at 87.

      • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:39 PM

        That mash up of Scherzer’s swinging Ks was amazing.

  63. Danny - May 27, 2015 at 10:34 PM

    Hated Grace vs. Soler matchup.

  64. NatsLady - May 27, 2015 at 10:35 PM

    I don’t understand why MW didn’t trust Janssen with the full 8th inning. Why bother with Grace?

  65. exposremains - May 27, 2015 at 10:35 PM

    Didnt Grace lose it last night…

    • NatsLady - May 27, 2015 at 10:36 PM

      Yes. And I’m all for getting back on the horse. Just–another day.

      • chrisrw109nats - May 27, 2015 at 11:24 PM

        I actually think that bringing in Grace was the right decision. You need to show him you have faith in all sorts of situations and, honestly, you need to see if he can be that guy or not.

        His results were bad tonight, he was throwing and gripping too tightly. But he has great stuff and he will become a high leverage guy for us.

        Tonight? Matt gave him exactly the right amount of rope… and he also got to see what Jansen can do in a high leverage spot. Which is pretty good information to get right there.

  66. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:35 PM

    I said noooo grace!

  67. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:37 PM

    I suck grace!!!!!😡😡😡

  68. Nats Fan Zee - May 27, 2015 at 10:37 PM

    WTF happened to our BP?

  69. Danny - May 27, 2015 at 10:37 PM

    That’s awful.

  70. exposremains - May 27, 2015 at 10:37 PM

    Not ready..AAA

  71. NatsLady - May 27, 2015 at 10:37 PM

    Janssen is a closer for chrissake. He can handle a lefty. Now he has to come in with runners on base.

    • Nats Fan Zee - May 27, 2015 at 10:39 PM

      And no outs

    • AlexandriaNatFan - May 27, 2015 at 10:41 PM

      Yeah I was gonna ask too why they didn’t bring in the 8th inning guy for the 8th inning.

  72. Drew - May 27, 2015 at 10:38 PM

    Danger, Will Robinson …

  73. lplipty - May 27, 2015 at 10:38 PM

    Thats y u need 3 leftys in pen

  74. ogremj - May 27, 2015 at 10:38 PM

    Wow. How do you put Grace in there?

  75. Steady Eddie - May 27, 2015 at 10:39 PM

    Now this just flat-out stinks — “ball” 2 to Rizzo, 6.1 inches INSIDE the zone:

    @NationalsUmp: Call hurts #Nationals
    Ball 2 should be strike 1
    Bot 8 Grace vs Rizzo
    2% call same
    6.1in from edge http://t.co/GSQMGFNOQl

  76. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:39 PM

    Ugh. HBP was weak sauce, but Grace got pinched on ball 3. That was way more of a strike than a lot of other pitches tonight.

  77. Joe Seamhead - May 27, 2015 at 10:39 PM

    Well, that didn’t go well. I wonder how Casey Janssen is coming in with runners on base?

    • knoxvillenat - May 27, 2015 at 10:42 PM

      Going to find out,aren’t we?

    • unkyd59 - May 27, 2015 at 10:49 PM

      Ho hum… 😉

  78. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:41 PM

    Ump has made the strike zone smaller all of a sudden.

  79. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:42 PM

    Look how badly the ump missed this one. 6.1 inches within the strike zone:

    Nats Strike Zone @NationalsUmp ·
    Call hurts #Nationals
    Ball 2 should be strike 1
    Bot 8 Grace vs Rizzo
    2% call same
    6.1in from edge

  80. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:42 PM

    scmargenau – May 27, 2015 at 10:22 PM
    Not grace!!! Nooooo!!

    24. Min ago! Damn it MW read this blog 😱

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:46 PM

      MW has been managing a good game but he head thumped on putting Matt Grace the Rookie back in a Leverage situation.

      • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:48 PM

        Dumb. I hope he learns

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:50 PM

        I think I’m fair when it comes to calling out MW and he’s been flawless until then. In his defense, was Thornton not available?

      • Steady Eddie - May 27, 2015 at 10:54 PM

        Thornton had pitched the last two games, though only 3 pitches on Monday (but 12 yesterday).

  81. AlexandriaNatFan - May 27, 2015 at 10:43 PM

    Actually, the only thing we’re wondering is why you’re still talking.

  82. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:45 PM

    What a play by Janssen and Ryan Zimmerman!!!

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:45 PM

      Unreal. It’s almost unfair having zim at first

  83. kgwcoach - May 27, 2015 at 10:46 PM

    Yeah baby!! A save in the eighth!

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:48 PM

      Technically a Hold but it feels like a Save.

      • kgwcoach - May 27, 2015 at 10:58 PM

        Yeah I know. But I am a believer that the eighth is the real save inning for most games.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 11:00 PM

        Tom Boswell agrees with you. It’s what made Tyler Clippard so valuable.

  84. Danny - May 27, 2015 at 10:47 PM

    Heck of a job by Janssen. Throws 87, bit well located.

  85. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:47 PM

    Janssen is THE MAN!

  86. lplipty - May 27, 2015 at 10:47 PM

    Please send Grace back to farm and trade fir Adrois

  87. Drew - May 27, 2015 at 10:47 PM

    Dude’s got guts.

    Next time let him start the 8th.

  88. exposremains - May 27, 2015 at 10:48 PM

    Thats a guy that is not scared. Now do it again! The rookies are just so inconsistent.

    • adcwonk - May 27, 2015 at 11:04 PM

      … The rookies are just so inconsistent.

      Well, one way to give them experience is . . .

  89. Eugene in Oregon - May 27, 2015 at 10:48 PM

    Wait. I’m confused. I understood the game was ‘flushed away’ at 10:41? But the score still reads 2-0. What am I missing?

  90. Steady Eddie - May 27, 2015 at 10:48 PM

    And that’s why Rizzo got Casey Janssen. CJ made a lot of fans just there.

  91. Joe Seamhead - May 27, 2015 at 10:48 PM

    WOW! Great job, fellows! Three good, very good defensive plays on two batters.

  92. curlydub34 - May 27, 2015 at 10:50 PM

    As for Grace starting the inning, I think MW should have foreseen Soler pinch hitting there and gone with Thornton instead of Grace. However, Grace has been pitching pretty well and gotten some big outs. Not sure where all this Grace hate is coming from.

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:53 PM

      Did u not watch last night?

      • curlydub34 - May 27, 2015 at 10:54 PM

        so one bad game, that arguably(by a lot here) was due to a poor decision by Desmond that cost them the game and Grace should be sent down with a sub 2.5 era?

      • Hiram Hover - May 27, 2015 at 11:12 PM

        Grace has a role to play, but don’t be fooled by the ERA. It’s not a stat that means much for a reliever. He has a 1.75 WHIP and has let 3 of 7 inherited runners score.

    • NatsLady - May 27, 2015 at 10:53 PM

      i don’t hate Grace. He’s been terrific mostly. I just don’t understand making it complicated. You have an 8th inning guy, he’s available. Just start the inning with him, bases clean. That’s his JOB.

  93. Danny - May 27, 2015 at 10:50 PM

    Not expecting anything from Taylor ABs these days.

  94. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:51 PM

    Ghost!! There’s 2 SYL

  95. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 10:52 PM

    ESPI!

  96. conatsguy - May 27, 2015 at 10:52 PM

    Atta boy Danny!

  97. exposremains - May 27, 2015 at 10:52 PM

    Was just about to say what has Espinosa done recently

  98. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:52 PM

    “Ghost of Steve M. – May 27, 2015 at 8:26 PM
    I want to hear Carp call out a few times tonight “See you laaater”!”

    That’s TWO!!!!

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:54 PM

      Look up turtle. Allready tagged u 🙂

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:57 PM

        You’re awesome! I had in mind 3 Nats dingers!

      • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:03 PM

        Let’s hope you don’t have a chance to be right ;).

  99. Joe Seamhead - May 27, 2015 at 10:53 PM

    How about that!
    Reverse hex by Bob C!

  100. adcwonk - May 27, 2015 at 10:54 PM

    BP is 5th in league in ERA.

    But don’t let facts get in the way….

  101. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:55 PM

    3 hit night for Desi!

  102. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:55 PM

    Insurance plz

  103. npb99 - May 27, 2015 at 10:55 PM

    How about Espi! None of us saw his rebound coming.

    • Eugene in Oregon - May 27, 2015 at 10:59 PM

      Very fair point.

  104. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:55 PM

    I wanted a bunt here by Esco!

  105. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:56 PM

    TOOTBLAN 1

    • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 10:59 PM

      Yah, sort of kind of, have to make sure it clears the pitcher.

  106. exposremains - May 27, 2015 at 10:58 PM

    Span look like he could have been safe if he ran hard home once he got caught.

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:59 PM

      A better chance

  107. AlexandriaNatFan - May 27, 2015 at 10:58 PM

    Glad to see us execute a hit and run here!

  108. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 10:58 PM

    One more toot n ghost owes me a craft beer

    • rlndtln - May 27, 2015 at 11:02 PM

      been saying all night Danny must play against lefties.he is hitting almost 400

      • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 11:04 PM

        Lol, TOOTBLAN – I set over under at 2

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 11:04 PM

        Still need to get Uggla some game time and Danny some rest. That insurance run was huge.

  109. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:00 PM

    What’s sick about that?

  110. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 11:06 PM

    “scmargenau – May 27, 2015 at 11:04 PM
    Lol, TOOTBLAN – I set over under at 2”

    I would give you a 1/2 for Span. Personally I thought it was a doubleplay ball.

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 11:07 PM

      Hmmm. Can’t win anyways unless we pick runner off

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 11:09 PM

        LOL. After last night, I think both managers warned their teams against stupidity on the bases.

  111. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 11:06 PM

    Drew leads in saves! Great game boys!

    SWM – u stink

  112. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:06 PM

    Way to hold the ball there Desi

  113. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 11:07 PM

    Carp just said Nats 1 strike away from their 8th straight series win. I thought it would be the 9th. OK, he just corrected himself.

  114. chrisrw109nats - May 27, 2015 at 11:07 PM

    Yep…. totally flushed away that shut out there when they…

    … oh that’s right. Gave up 0 runs

  115. kgwcoach - May 27, 2015 at 11:08 PM

    On to Cinc looking for 10.

  116. adcwonk - May 27, 2015 at 11:08 PM

    Is that eight straight series wins now?!

    • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:08 PM

      I think 9?

      • adcwonk - May 27, 2015 at 11:09 PM

        I’ll happily owe you a beer!

      • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:30 PM

        I’ll happily drink it!

        What an amazing month of ball.

    • adcwonk - May 27, 2015 at 11:09 PM

      OK, nine?

    • scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 11:09 PM

      👍👍👍

  117. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:08 PM

    Unbelievable. Nats rock!!!

  118. scmargenau - May 27, 2015 at 11:08 PM

    Lock all stars

    – max
    – storen
    – harp

    Maybe esco

  119. Ghost of Steve M. - May 27, 2015 at 11:12 PM

    That was one great game! PItching both ways was spectacular. Janssen saves that game (technically a Hold). Bryce and Espi go deep. Defense was solid but only had to make 14 defensive outs and none bigger than Janssen fielding that bunt and RZim scooping the throw.

    An amazing 9 straight series wins!

  120. conatsguy - May 27, 2015 at 11:12 PM

    Nats win 3-0. Cubs were flushed. You gave up on your team. shame on you. GYFNG!!

  121. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:19 PM

    So what’s the record for consecutive series wins? I think I heard or read that it’s 9, but it spanned two seasons (e.g., won 8 series straight to end the season, won the opening series of the next season)?

  122. #4 - May 27, 2015 at 11:23 PM

    1. Big boy pitching by Jansen.
    2. I like using Grace to start the 8th with two lefties due up. He’s been effective. It just didn’t work this time.
    3. Definitely not a TOOTBLAN by Span. With 1st and 3rd, the infield back, and one out, you always go from 3rd on any ground ball to stay out of the double play. You go and then get in a rundown. You still have a runner in scoring position that way with two outs.
    4. Another game where the Nats cannot move a lead-off baserunner around, at least without benefit of an error. I’m assuming somebody keeps that stat – how many lead-off baserunners a team pushes across. The Nats seem to struggle with that.

  123. adcwonk - May 27, 2015 at 11:30 PM

    Here’s the definitive count:

    1. 2 of 3 from Braves
    2. 2 of 3 from Mets
    3. 2 of 3 from Marlins
    4. 3 of 3 from Braves
    5. 2 of 3 from D-Backs
    6. 3 of 4 from Padres
    7. 2 of 2 from Yanks
    8. 2 of 3 from Phils
    9. 2 of 3 from Cubs

    !!

    🙂

    • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:32 PM

      Isn’t #2 3 of 4 from the Mets?

      • adcwonk - May 27, 2015 at 11:33 PM

        You’re right!

      • Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:35 PM

        I remember because it’s impressive that the streak includes two four-game series. Pretty amazing.

      • chrisrw109nats - May 27, 2015 at 11:37 PM

        I think that is right 21-7 (21 and 6 since the COMEBACK)

  124. chrisrw109nats - May 27, 2015 at 11:33 PM

    Can we give credit for that to Grace?

    I am fine with people who honestly critique the team, though I don’t always agree with what they say.

    Natty was NOT that.

  125. David Proctor - May 27, 2015 at 11:44 PM

    I think that MW sometimes can’t win. He has been routinely bashed for being too rigid and not playing matchups. He played matchups today instead of just blindly going to his 8th inning guy. I’d have preferred Thornton over Grace, but Thornton was probably unavailable today. He has pitched a lot lately.

    If Janssen gets beat by the two lefties atop the order (because they obviously wouldn’t have pinch hit with a righty if Janssen came in), MW would be vilified here.

    As a general rule, I would prefer he continue to play matchups and if it doesn’t work, so be it. I would prefer a better second lefty than Grace. Maybe Rizzo can go out and get one.

    • virginiascopist - May 28, 2015 at 6:10 AM

      ” I would prefer a better second lefty than Grace.”

      Don’t we still have Rich Hill around somewhere? IIRC, he looked great in spring training.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - May 28, 2015 at 7:35 AM

        Rich Hill hasn’t had a good week. Felipe Rivero and Sammy Solis are additional options. Grace was also royally screwed on a ball/strike call by the ump in the Rizzo at-bat. The ball was 6 inches in the zone.

  126. Eric - May 27, 2015 at 11:47 PM

    Chelsea Jane’s pointed out that Harper’s homer tonight is his 13th in May, most ever in a month for the Nats.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/nationals/2015/05/27/daee2c08-04b7-11e5-8bda-c7b4e9a8f7ac_story.html

  127. manassasnatsfan - May 28, 2015 at 12:46 AM

    just back to the hotel after eating after tonight’s game.

    Have not read comments.

    A few of my own now 19-0 when Escobar scores.

    Scherzer was safe at second why did MW not ask for a review? Even Cubs fans at the game asked me why MW let it slide?

    • Eric - May 28, 2015 at 12:52 AM

      Umps shut it down: “neighborhood play” not reviewable.

  128. manassasnatsfan - May 28, 2015 at 9:47 AM

    MLB rules says if throws pull fielders off the bag the neighborhood play is reviewable.

    That throw was hide and wide, thus that play was reversable. The umps gather decide if throw was on target and decided it was. Did look from seat in aisle 120 . Didnt look good when I watched the replay.

    Bad call.

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