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Scherzer happy to bounce back in final first-half start

Jul 12, 2015, 6:13 PM EST

USA Today

Max Scherzer and the Nationals entered the weekend with a decision to make between him starting Sunday’s series finale against the Baltimore Orioles, or skipping his turn in interest of his availability for Tuesday’s All-Star Game.

It wasn’t a tough one in the end, they say, as Scherzer opted to face the Orioles instead of pitching in Cincinnati. He was coming off his worst outing of the 2015 season when he allowed five earned runs against the Reds and was intent on turning the page.

That goal was accomplished in convincing fashion, as Scherzer fell just one strike short of capturing his fourth complete game of the season. He finished with 8 2/3 innings of two-run ball, with seven strikeouts and no walks.

“After the start against Cincinnati where I didn’t really have it, I wanted to come out here today and pitch as well as I can. I know what I’m capable of,” he said.

The two runs Scherzer allowed came on solo homers by Adam Jones. One came in the first inning and one in the ninth, both were when Scherzer was within one strike of getting a third out.

“He was able to get it to a special place in this park. He just did a good job competing against me with two strikes and hitting my off-speed stuff. Credit to him,” Scherzer said.

Scherzer finished with no walks for the fifth straight outing, a stretch of 39 2/3 consecutive frames.

“Starting with no walks allows you to pitch efficiently and pitch deep into games. That can always help the ballclub. I’m proud of that,” he said.

Scherzer pitching on Sunday instead of the All-Star Game was noticed by his teammates as a decision to put the Nationals first and ahead of his own individual interests.

“It puts everything in perspective,” Tyler Moore said. “It makes us know that we’re more important. It’s awesome to see.”

“It’s just Max. He’s a competitor, he’s a team-guy. He’s a horse,” Dan Uggla said. “There was never a doubt that he was going to pitch today. I’m sure he wanted to pitch in the All-Star Game, but it’s team-first and then go get them after that.”

Scherzer enters the All-Star break 10-7 with a 2.12 ERA. That’s the best ERA he’s ever had at the break, but Scherzer hopes to get even better in the second half, even while on pace for a career-high in innings pitched.

“I’ve done some good things here in the first half, but it’s going to be even more important that I do better things in the second half because this is when it’s going to matter. I know what it takes to win in these situations to get to October. Hopefully as a team we’re able to play our best baseball and be able to get there,” he said.

  1. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 12, 2015 at 6:16 PM

    That was Scherzer’s best outing ever in OPACY however he was burned once again by the homers that were wall scrapers.

  2. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 12, 2015 at 6:22 PM

    “Scherzer pitching on Sunday instead of the All-Star Game was noticed by his teammates as a decision to put the Nationals first and ahead of his own individual interests.

    “It puts everything in perspective,” Tyler Moore said. “It makes us know that we’re more important. It’s awesome to see.””

    Well said Chase. I just hope in the 2nd half MW can control his innings better.

    It was the right move to pull Max but I wasn’t 100% comfortable with Storen facing a power lefty but credit to Storen, he was filthy and got the slider down. I was hoping to see Rivero, TBT but different than Game 2, this had a happy ending.

  3. rlndtln - Jul 12, 2015 at 6:29 PM

    Thought the same thing since Drew was not in the game bring in Rivero against Davis.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 12, 2015 at 6:35 PM

      I think Rivero has to move into a move into a Hi Lev LOOGY role to see what he has. Thornton got old in front of my eyes. Perfect spot to go double barrel in the bullpen for either a lefty or righty. Even though it worked out I didn’t like the move as the #1 option. If Rivero wasn’t available or a 2 run lead then ok. Again glad it worked out and Storen was filthy.

      • Section 222 - Jul 12, 2015 at 11:58 PM

        Just looking through the comments. I think you’re overmanaging Ghost. You know MW is never going to hand the ball to anyone in the 9th other than Storen (except if he’s unavailable of course). Game 2 was the same way. Sure, theoretically you can play matchups in the 9th, but it’s never going to happen.

        Given what happened in Game 2, I was worried too. But if Max is coming out, bringing in the closer is the #1, #2, and #3 option.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 13, 2015 at 7:41 AM

        Of course you’re right in the Cult of the Closer. Storen got the job done and that’s what matters so my 2nd guessing was simply matchup baseball. Nats got the W.

  4. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 12, 2015 at 6:30 PM

    “#Nationals prospect @treavturner with his Team USA autographed baseball #FuturesGame http://t.co/1YHRR5anZ0

    • npb99 - Jul 12, 2015 at 6:52 PM

      Gosh, the guy looks 16. That darn youth thing we all used to have.

      • Drew - Jul 12, 2015 at 7:15 PM

        It might not be as bad as the Hons dealing Schilling, Finley and Harnisch for Glenn “Glass Jaw” Davis, but San Diego’s decision to trade Turner and Ross looks crazy.

      • adcwonk - Jul 12, 2015 at 11:00 PM

        Gosh, the guy looks 16.

        True, that. But he does look older than MAT 😉

    • laddieblahblah - Jul 13, 2015 at 7:41 AM

      Interesting take from CBS sports on Trea Turner:

      http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/eye-on-baseball/25239177/futures-game-prospect-watch-conforto-could-help-mets-in-second-half

      “Most likely to be an All-Star in 2016: SS Trea Turner, Nationals

      “Only one player from the 2014 Futures Game is a 2015 MLB All-Star: Cubs wunderkind Kris Bryant. Others like Jose Fernandez, Jean Segura, Mike Trout, Bryce Harper and Manny Machado have made the jump from Futures Game one year to All-Star the next in recent seasons, so it’s hardly unprecedented.

      “Turner was traded twice this offseason — from the Padres to the Rays as part of the package for Wil Myers, then from the Rays to the Nats for Steven Souza — and is currently hitting .318/.368/.472 with 17 doubles, seven home runs and 17 steals this year. He’s played most of his 84 games at Double-A but was recently promoted to Triple-A.

      “The Nationals figure to let Ian Desmond walk a free agent this offseason — that was likely even before his disastrous 2015 campaign — and Turner is their long-term solution at short. He’s a classic speedy leadoff type who could steal a ton of bases and hit for a high average next year, then coast into the All-Star Game thanks in part to the generally weak crop of shortstops around MLB”

      Also, Rafael Bautista finally returned from the DL after almost 3 months. He’s on rehab at Auburn.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 13, 2015 at 7:50 AM

        I like the optimism and I hope we get to see TVT in September as a callup.

      • tcostant - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:46 AM

        He hit a triple off a guy throw 100 MPH, I was impressed.

  5. Theophilus T.S. - Jul 12, 2015 at 6:33 PM

    I’m not certain Scherzer had a choice about pitching today. Rizzo said he and Wms had “a long discussion with Max” — which implies, to me, there was not instant unanimity. On the other hand I can’t imagine Scherzer putting up much of a fuss.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 12, 2015 at 6:37 PM

      Could have been Scherzer saying he wanted to pitch today and MW saying he wanted to go with Fister.

    • Theophilus T.S. - Jul 12, 2015 at 6:37 PM

      To reply to myself, I note that Scherzer will be on regular rest next Friday, which would not necessarily have been the case if he pitched in the AS game. So it’s really a two-fer so far as the team is concerned.

      • letswin3 - Jul 12, 2015 at 10:39 PM

        Good point.

  6. veejh - Jul 12, 2015 at 7:32 PM

    Great way to go into the ASB. Scherzer kicks total a**. Sometimes MW just needs to put the ball in Storen’s hand for those 9th innings. Max was at around 100, I think. No need to burn him up more than necessary, imho.

  7. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 12, 2015 at 7:36 PM

    Houston Astros enter the ASG in 2nd place on a 6 game losing streak. How quickly things change.

    • NatsLady - Jul 13, 2015 at 12:15 AM

      I don’t think anyone thought it would last, but it was fun. They (and the Cubbies) will be something to see next year.

      • nats128 - Jul 13, 2015 at 7:28 AM

        Houston hasnt been the same since the George Springer injury. They lack depth.

  8. Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 12, 2015 at 8:46 PM

    This wasn’t written by an Oreos LoD member, rather was written by their MASN beat reporter Roch Kubatko.

    “The Orioles enter the All-Star break on the decline, losing again today 3-2 to the Nationals…They’ve lost 10 of their last 13 games and will be four back in the division if the Yankees win today. That’s not limping into the break, that’s crawling on your elbows.”

    • nattygoats - Jul 12, 2015 at 9:07 PM

      Let’s hope they keep crawling on the elbows. Love to play them in Sept with there season already over.

      • natsguy - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:01 AM

        Their

    • adcwonk - Jul 12, 2015 at 11:08 PM

      Oreos batting .215 as a team in July (!!)

      Oreos 1 for 26 in RISP over last six games. Oh my!

      • nats128 - Jul 13, 2015 at 7:32 AM

        You would never know they were struggling from the broadcast. FP did alot of talking about how good Machado is and his platinum glove and in the 1st inning on his throws to 1st he lollipoped them over and Escobar on a bad tire still beat it out and no mention of the lazy throw from FP after all the compliments. The Oreos played with a lack of energy and care from what I saw.

    • rayvil01 - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:05 AM

      The two non-moves they made last winter are biting them: Markakis was getting on base at a good clip and Cruz was eating up that pop-fly power alley in left field. Markakis scored 81 runs from the leadoff spot and Cruz drove in 108. That’s a lot of production to lose all at once.

      Teams from Band Box parks tend to be built for HRs. Baltimore is 14th out of 15 in the AL for stolen bases. It’s a station to station team. Only 13 Sac Bunts all year. Lite’s good when the boppers are on a roll. But, it dries up quickly when it doesn’t. Live by the band box, die by it.

      • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:10 AM

        They let their best offensive player go (Cruz) and their 4th best offensive player (Markakis) who also provided solid defense. Now they have Machado in leadoff, really? Adam Jones is their best offensive player but I am not impressed by his defense.

        The Nats best all-time hitter in Baltimore wasn’t available for the series as Ryan Zimmerman has the perfected Camden swing.

      • therealjohnc - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:24 AM

        Well, they did let those guys go … but their problems this year are not offense. Last year, with Markakis and Cruz, the O’s scored 4.35 runs per game. This year, without Markakis and Cruz, the O’s are scoring … 4.40 runs per game. Yep, it’s gone up slightly.

        Their problem has actually been pitching.

      • adcwonk - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:08 AM

        but their problems this year are not offense. Last year, with Markakis and Cruz, the O’s scored 4.35 runs per game. This year, without Markakis and Cruz, the O’s are scoring … 4.40 runs per game.

        Hmm, indeed that’s correct. Their team ERA (and/or runs allowed per game) has gone up by 0.30, which is not trivial.

        On the other, other, hand, their swoon in July this year is due to hitting. Granted, only 11 games, but in July this year, they are batting .215 and scoring only 2.91 runs/game — adding up to a 3-8 record (they also lost their last two games in June). When July started, they were tied for first place (and then _on_ July 1 won, and they were a 1/2 game in first place) — now they are 4 games behind.

      • nats128 - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:37 AM

        Not so fast THEREALJOHNC. Your comparing there runs in the year 2014 to a 1/2 year in 2015 and when you dive into the numbers you will find that the Oreos have had 2 monsterous run scoring games that have skewed the numbers in a small sample size.

        The Oreos have already had games in the 1st half where they scored 19 runs in a game and 18 runs in a game and that skews the numbers up considerably in a 88 game sample size compared to the 1st half last year where there 2 highest scoring games were 14 and 11 runs and thats +12 to the total over 88 games is .14 runs so if you consider just that factor they are less on every other game 4.35 vs. 4.26.

        They are 12-14 in 1 run games vs last year where they were 32-23 in 1 run games. Pitching is the problem altho losing a 40 HR man with 108 RBIs was a big loss when Nelson Cruz left.

      • therealjohnc - Jul 13, 2015 at 12:17 PM

        Even counting numbers the way you slice them, nats128, shows a less than a tenth of a run per game difference between last year and this year. Yes, it’s hurt them to not have those two bats in the lineup – but they’re getting a lot more out of Machado this year than they did last year, among others. It would have been nice to have Machado AND Cruz + Markakis, simply because that would have given them MORE offense than last year and could have offset the weaker pitching they have this season.

        But I think another number you post links to a much more significant difference from last year to this year: luck. Winning one run games is essentially random – even with the same team with largely the same roster it doesn’t sustain from year to year. Last year the O’s were lucky (32-21) in 1 run games, this year they’re pretty close to dead even (12-14). That’s much of the difference right there. It’s part of the reason that they are underperforming their “Pythagorean” record (44-44, where run differential suggests they should e 48-40) where last year they slightly overperformed (96-66, where their run differential suggests they should have been 94-68).

        But humans hate the concepts of luck or coincidence – we’re trained to see patterns even if none exist.

  9. adcwonk - Jul 12, 2015 at 11:10 PM

    I was telling my daughter the Wonkling, right after the ugly Cincy game: I’ll bet that Scherzer will be more determined than ever to pitch like all heck on Sunday.

  10. Section 222 - Jul 12, 2015 at 11:53 PM

    Holy crap. Pirates just walked off the Cardinals in extras for the second night in a row. They were down 5-3 in the 10th. Got five hits in the inning against Trevor Rosenthal. Wow.

    • NatsLady - Jul 13, 2015 at 1:20 AM

      I was watching. Couldn’t believe Matheny left him in to lose that game. Didn’t even have anyone warming up until after it was tied. Rosenthal threw like 27 pitches the night before, and he was clearly not on his game. BUT, the Closer is everything, it was “his inning.”

      • Section 222 - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:57 AM

        Cult of the closer, baby! Live by it, die by it.

    • ehay2k - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:02 AM

      At Nats park, when he is pitching, I always heckle Trevor and tell him he pitches like Ken Rosenthal.

    • Ghost of Steve M. - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:08 AM

      Impressive comebacks from the Pirates.

  11. natsjackinfl - Jul 13, 2015 at 7:01 AM

    So I’m getting grumpy all ready due to the rotten all star break. At least I can look forward to next weekend and my trip to DC for the Nats / Dodgers series.

  12. NatsLady - Jul 13, 2015 at 7:32 AM

    Coped with the All-Star break by scheduled my vacation for this week. Will have to miss Friday’s game due to travel schedules, but that’s the price you pay. That’s why they invented mobile devices and the MLB At-Bat app…

    Didn’t want to ask my sis to get up at 2 a.m. to drive me to the airport (three-hour drive) so I could make a 6 a.m. flight and MAYBE get back in time for, um, a baseball game–assuming no delays (which is not a good assumption on a summer Friday).

    I hope our guys rest and heal up. Looking forward to Rendon and Zim coming off the DL. I don’t know about Span, I doubt we know the full story, they probably don’t either. For all the folks who mourn the loss of Blevins for den Dekker, bear in mind Blevins is injured and shows no sign of a return–and den Dekker is helping out our Motley Crew.

    • veejh - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:49 AM

      Except for that atrocious jumping attempt he made at that HR. That was horrible. That ball was catchable.

      • natsjackinfl - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:31 AM

        That may have been catchable by an NBA leaping power forward but that’s it. None the less, it was a pretty weak effort.

      • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:47 AM

        veejh would have had it.

      • veejh - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:11 AM

        I am 6′ 3″, so, you’re probably right.

      • texnat1 - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:36 AM

        I thought it was catchable at first as well, but the replay showed it was well over his head. He had an awkward jump that made it look like a mistake, but really if he had just turned and watched it, nobody would be on his case.

      • Hiram Hover - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:40 AM

        Given its arc, that ball was not easily catchable. den Dekker could have tried harder, but he still would have come up with an empty glove.

        To catch it, you’d need both the height and leaping ability of an NBA power forward or center, AND the flexibility of Gumby.

    • dcwx61 - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:58 AM

      Wasn’t it ultimately, Billy Burns for den Decker ?

  13. Theophilus T.S. - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:03 AM

    According to Wikipedia, “Motley refers to the traditional costume of the court jester, fool, or the harlequin character in commedia dell’arte. The latter wears a patchwork of red, green and blue diamonds that is still a fashion motif.”

    It seems a bit unkind to use the term to describe the Nats’ earnest bench players who are performing with noteworthy professionalism..

    • ehay2k - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:06 AM

      Besides which only the Marlins wear Motley unis.

      • NatsLady - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:33 AM

        From the Urban Dictionalry:

        motley crew
        An odd and often mismatched assortment of people/ a group of friends or teammates who don’t seem like they’d work well together, but somehow they do.

        Everyone in my group of friends is really different from one another, but we all get along really well; we’re quite a motley crew.

      • ehay2k - Jul 14, 2015 at 1:36 PM

        Yes, Motley means patchwork, and refers to the clothing worn by court jesters and harlequins, not the foolery of those persons. So, referring to the Nats as a motley crew is in no way insulting, and is actually quite appropriate given their injury situation. I was attempting to poke fun at the Marlins and apparently my attempt was unsuccessful.

    • Hiram Hover - Jul 13, 2015 at 8:19 AM

      Picking apart the word choice of other commenters?

      Sigh. it’s going to be a long All Star break….

    • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:50 AM

      It’s a figurative expression. The idea isn’t that the players are wearing motley colors; they ARE the mis-matched spots, figuratively, put together in a garish ensemble that somehow works in spite of their disparate appearances.

    • Bruxtun - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:22 AM

      Yeah Theo she was literally calling our players court jesters. Good one!!!

  14. laddieblahblah - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:23 AM

    Rizzo talks trade deadline with WaPo’s Chelsea:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/nationals-journal/wp/2015/07/12/mike-rizzo-on-the-nationals-trade-deadline-plans/

    Of course, Rizzo never spills the beans on what he actually intends to do. I think he enjoys the misdirection. It’s like watching a con man play a mark.

    • jd - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:56 AM

      I think that for the most part the team is OK given health. I wouldn’t pay the asking price for a Chapman or a Clippard but I would kick the tires on Adam Lind.

      Another approach and it’s a bit unorthodox but certainly not original is the concept of trading pending free agents. If you can get a top level prospect specifically a power hitting (left handed) corner outfielder or 1st baseman I may consider moving Zimmermann and promoting Ross. I would throw in Desmond in the mix as well.

      I have been giving the SS situation some thought and I am coming around to the idea that Trae Turner may be our best SS right now and may give us our best shot at winning this year. Could we potentially give away service time and start the Turner era in 2015? I didn’t think it likely until recently but the more I see Desi the more I become convinced that this can’t continue. Of course the other option is to put him on the bench and play Rendon, Espi and Escobar.

      • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:08 AM

        What is the situation with Turner’s service time? Do they lose a year of control if they bring him up now? I don’t think using up an option year would matter much — if he needs 3 more years off up and down, he’s not the guy they (and we) are hoping he would be. But letting him get to free agency a year early is a BFD.

      • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:11 AM

        If I were a not-Rizzo GM and giving up a top prospect, I’d let you keep your 2 months of Znn, who I can’t re-sign early and don’t get a comp pick for, and take Ross.

        But I’m not.

      • Hiram Hover - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:29 AM

        Sofa

        A good, brief run down of service time as it applies to team control and Super 2 status is:

        http://www.fangraphs.com/library/principles/contract-details/service-time-super-two/

        Basically, if Turner accumulates 172 days or more of MLB service time between 2015-16, the Nats control him only thru 2021. If he accumulates 171 days or less, they control him thru 2022. (This assumes, in both cases, that he spends more time in the minors after that.)

        This is why, notwithstanding all the howls from the fans and pundits, the Cubs waited til mid-April to call up Kris Bryant–to make sure he gets no more than 171 days of service time this year.

      • Hiram Hover - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:30 AM

        Edit: spend NO more time in the minors after that

      • jd - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:39 AM

        Sofa,

        The issue is simply starting the clock early. If you assume that Turner is the long term answer at SS then you want to have him under team control and pre FA for as long as possible. Now, if you think he gives you the best chance of winning in 2015 that too has to be a prime consideration, I don’t know that to be a fact but I can tell you with a fair degree of certainty that Ian Desmond doesn’t give us the best chance of winning.

        I expect at the very least that Desi goes to bench once all of our infielders are healthy.

      • natsnatsnatswoo - Jul 13, 2015 at 11:25 AM

        They get 6.0 years of MLB service time out of Turner before he becomes a FA. If he hits 6.0 years in the middle of a season they can keep him until the end of that season. So yes, if they bring him up now he would become a FA at the end of the 2021 season. But if they wait until next season and bring him up in late April/early May he wouldn’t be a FA until 2022.

      • Hiram Hover - Jul 13, 2015 at 12:23 PM

        Congrats to woo for making the point more succinctly than I did.

        I would add one clarification–technically, as I understand it, they could bring Turner up this year and still control him thru 2022.

        If they call him up this year and he earns 30 (or 60 or however many) days of service time, they’d have to tack that on to the # of days they would already need to keep him in the minors in 2016. So, instead of a mid-April call up at the earliest, mid-May (or mid-June, or whatever).

        He would still end 2016 without hitting the magic 172 days, and thus would be under team control thru 2022. And it’s not that usual for a Sept. call up to begin the next season in the minors.

        On the other hand, if they call him up and he performs well and is part of a post-season run in 2015, sending him back to the minors for several months of 2016 would be pretty awkward, and might be challenged as a violation of the CBA.

  15. jd - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:25 AM

    My 1st chance to comment since Friday. I really thought the Friday loss was on MW.

    1) I had zero problem letting Gio start the 7th. He cruised through the 6th, was at 100 pitches so there’s no reason to think he was gassed. The bullpen was also ready to step in as soon as a runner got on. So far so good.

    2) I didn’t like MW’s choice of Jansen to pitch the 8th but to be fair he (Jansen) did nothing wrong, an infield single and an out.

    3) I hated turning Weiters around. He already had 2 hits right handed on Friday, I would have left Jansen in to face Weiters. Thornton is no longer an effective reliable late inning guy, his 94 MPH straight fastball looks like a beach ball to many right handed hitters.

    4) I think none of the moves above were terrible, what I question most is the use of Roark in a tie game in the 9th. I think I may be in the minority but the way I would approach tie games from the 9th on is by using my best reliever (Storen) 1st and then going down the line to the 2nd best option etc. I hate to lose a game not having used my best reliever. Old school thinking says that on the road you keep your closer in case you have a save situation. I think that’s bunk.

    • nats128 - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:44 AM

      #4, you would advocate bringing in your closer on the road in a tie game? That goes against longstanding baseball logic. Roark threw a hanger and thats on Roark. He didnt do his job.

      #2, that infield hit off Janssen was a swinging bunt and it happens.

      #3, yes, Thornton looks to be at the end of his road. That was a BP pitch and that was the difference in the ballgame as that tied it. If the Nats get out of the 8th with the lead then Roark doesnt come in.

      In conclusion, Thornton and Roark have not been good and thats a problem going forward. Those postgame interviews after Roark gets another loss (4th on the season) is becoming groundhog day. He was smiling nervously as he faced the inquisition once again.

      • jd - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:59 AM

        nats128,

        I know its longstanding baseball custom. I wouldn’t call it logic because it’s illogical. The reason to use your closer is because he is the best option at the time and you are trying to prolong the game until your offense can score.

      • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:02 AM

        BTW, off-topic, but as long as we’re on motley time for a few days, I’ve been wondering something. 128, do you do the “there” thing on purpose? You’re really consistent with it, so I figured it might be deliberate. Just wondering.

      • nats128 - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:16 AM

        As in pointing a finger at someone?

      • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:30 AM

        No, seriously. I was wondering if you are doing it on purpose.

      • nats128 - Jul 13, 2015 at 11:18 AM

        Im lost on what your saying. To early.

      • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 13, 2015 at 11:26 AM

        Doesn’t matter. Wasn’t important anyway. Just looking at a four-day drought, here.

      • nats128 - Jul 13, 2015 at 11:43 AM

        Wont get easy opening the 2nd half against the Dodgers. Will face Greinke and Kershaw and thats tough.

    • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 13, 2015 at 9:59 AM

      I figured he was hoping he’d get multiple innings out of Roark, if it went that long, rather than burn more bullpen. Didn’t work out the way he’d hoped, but that’s all a manager has in the end–hope that the guy he uses does the job. Matty hasn’t personally hung a curve ball in years.

      Thornton may be done or he may not. One thing for sure: when you’re 38, and have a few bad games, plenty of people will say you are.

      Still, it does happen. Some guys do just lose it all at once. I thought I’d heard good things about Thornton’s workout regimen, which should help keep that from happening so fast, but I don’t recall the details.

      • jd - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:25 AM

        Sofa,

        I understand about Roark going multiple innings but I would do that later after having used Storen and even Treinen for 1 inning each in the meantime hoping that we can push a run across.

        Thornton threw in the high 90’s last year, this year he is sitting at 94, his fast ball is pretty straight and he doesn’t really have any other great weapons. He can still retire most left handers but I cringe when he comes in to face tough righties. Barrett and Treinen make you crazy with their lack of control vut they both have swing and miss stuff. Thornton doesn’t.

    • adcwonk - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:06 AM

      Roark struck out the first two guys and had two strikes on the third guy, right?

      Further, Roark can go multiple innings.

      • adcwonk - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:08 AM

        Oh, and I mean to add:

        I really thought the Friday loss was on MW.

        When a team scores only two runs, I’d tend to think that the loss is mostly on the hitters.

      • jd - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:28 AM

        wonk,

        They scored 2 runs but were ahead going into the 8th and tied going into the 9th. I don’t think MW manages these situations well. I don’t think MW is a terrible manager but I don’t think he is a value added manager either.

      • jd - Jul 13, 2015 at 10:51 AM

        In order to go multiple innings you 1st have to survive the inning you are in and Storen gives you the best chance of doing that, then you go for the next best reliever available etc. I understand that at some point you have to go to your long man and let the chips fall where they may but I wouldn’t do that in the 9th inning.

      • adcwonk - Jul 13, 2015 at 11:06 AM

        I hear you.

        That said, however, I think the choice of Roark is defensible, and I don’t blame MW for making a bad choice, even if I would have made a different one.

      • Soul Possession, My Sofa - Jul 13, 2015 at 11:18 AM

        In order to go multiple innings you 1st have to survive the inning you are in and Storen gives you the best chance of doing that, then you go for the next best reliever available etc. I understand that at some point you have to go to your long man and let the chips fall where they may but I wouldn’t do that in the 9th inning.

        I’m inclined to agree, personally, and if I were managing in the majors I might be inclined to do that. But if I were managing in the majors, I’d know a great deal more than I do now, so I’m not sure it matters much what I would do now.

      • zmunchkin - Jul 13, 2015 at 12:04 PM

        Bringing in a pitcher who can go multiple innings is, IMO, the right choice. Using up your one inning guys at the beginning of a 3 game series is typically a bad idea. And especially in a band-box like OPACY.

        it was the right choice. It simply did not work out.

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As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2015 schedule (subject to change)...

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