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Blowout loss doesn’t spoil Turner’s debut

Aug 22, 2015, 11:00 AM EST

Associated Press

The major league debut of top prospect Trea Turner happened to come in a blowout defeat for the Nationals, but the 22-year-old shortstop didn’t let that spoil what was a day he will always remember.

Turner received a nice ovation from the welcoming Nats crowd as he trotted out on defense to replace Ian Desmond in the top of the seventh on Friday night. Matt Williams summoned Turner once he sensed the game was getting away from the Nats, as the Brewers had just pulled away to a 6-2 lead with the bases loaded.

“Every debut is good, I would like to say,” Turner said. “You can’t necessarily have a bad debut, no matter how you play or what the results. It was just fun to be out there and I’m excited to go back out there tomorrow and hopefully get a chance to play and keep doing that.”

The fans cheering him on as he ran from the dugout made for a special moment for Turner.

“It’s hard for me not to pay attention to a lot of that. I can hear it and I see stuff out of the corners of my eyes all the time. It was awesome. That was very cool for me to experience that from the fans. The fans are awesome. They’ve been really, really good to me so far. It’s been fun,” he said.

Turner ended up with two at-bats, both that ended in groundouts. The first was to shortstop Jean Segura in the bottom of the seventh. Segura made the throw to first in a play so close the umpires took a second look on replay. The call was confirmed, as the cameras showed he was just a split-second late to the bag.

The whole replay process itself was new for Turner.

“I’ve never had replay in any game I’ve ever played. So, at first when he called me out I was like ‘alright, I’m out.’ And then everyone was yelling at me to stay on the base. It was a little bit different. Obviously, you wish you could have it because you’ll take any hit you can get. It went the other way. We’ll get after it tomorrow.”

Turner also grounded out to second base in the ninth inning. He finished 0-for-2, but flashed a smooth swing and some quickness on the basepaths.

“He’s got some speed, I can see that,” Bryce Harper said. “I just want to win ballgames. If he can help us then he should be up here.”

Turner played in front of 29,916 on Friday night, a much bigger crowd than he was used to in the minor leagues. But despite the different atmosphere, Turner was surprised how calm he was when he first took the field.

“It was weird. I wasn’t that nervous. I thought I was going to be a little bit more nervous. But at the same time I felt like I was doing some uncharacteristic things. I felt like I couldn’t control my body sometimes. I guess that’s the nerves. Just try to slow it down and be more comfortable tomorrow,” he said.

  1. Doc - Aug 22, 2015 at 11:26 AM

    Like Bryce said, lets win some games—time is running out!

    • natswoobooho - Aug 22, 2015 at 12:41 PM

      Any one scene Ghost

      • NatsLady - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:58 PM

        He started his own blog.

    • mauimo22 - Aug 22, 2015 at 2:46 PM

      Where’s My Ring?

  2. Eugene in Oregon - Aug 22, 2015 at 12:14 PM

    …but it sure didn’t help.

  3. oldtownatsfan - Aug 22, 2015 at 12:47 PM

    For my first NI comment I was hoping to offer something more than an emotional reaction, but I must say I was a little disappointed in the way Turner’s debut went down yesterday. Of course, I was excited to see him. But why not use him to pinch hit for Gio?

    Bottom five, one out, we’re down four runs so it’s not looking great, but the game is far from over at that point. With Turner (and others) sitting on the bench, MW basically concedes the plate appearance by giving Scherzer the nod. Yeah, he’s been halfway decent at the plate for a pitcher, but that didn’t strike me as a win-now move, and these are all games we need to win at this point.

    Ok, I thought to myself, with Yunel out maybe we shouldn’t burn our backup infielder that early in the game. That of course gets to a bigger question, which is why are we carrying so many bullpen arms when we could clearly use another bat coming off the bench. But it is what it is.

    Then, just two innings later, in the middle of the meltdown, MW decides to give Turner his debut. I gave him a nice round of applause, but honestly it was hard to get too excited. Desmond had reached base in two of his three plate appearances so far, and we needed to score a boatload of runs if we had any hope of getting back into it at that point. Also, it felt like I was simultaneously cheering Desmond’s removal from the game, which I absolutely did not want to do. Desmond himself seemed a bit perplexed on the field as to why he was being removed, but I of course have no idea what he was thinking.

    MW’s job is to win games, not please fans. But I felt that this whole sequence of events, while admittedly probably just a minor aspect of last night’s disappointing performance, neither gave us a better chance to win nor allowed me to really enjoy Turner’s debut.

    Nevertheless, the real take away from all this should be that, even if we miss the playoffs this year, all the naysayers who claim our window is closing aren’t really familiar with our team. I expect Turner to be one of the guys who helps keep the window open.

  4. micksback1 - Aug 22, 2015 at 12:52 PM

    what a beautiful day and I can’t wait to go to the ball park tonight, if for anything else, the weather.

    OK, so here is how I see things after last night, post game, both AM 980 and Grant Paulson and of course Phil and CueBall head:

    On the benefit of the doubt side, yes, jet lag is real, case and point, the first game verse Dodgers when the Nats blew them out. La did not return until 6AM PST. The Nats did not return yesterday until 4:40 AM….I Mick will give a mulligan on that as the team looked tired, lazy and mentally out of it verse the worst team in MLB

    I agree with Ray Knight that Nats MUST win 8 of 12 going back to the Rockies’ series. Right now Nats have won 2 of 4. The next 16 of 19 games are at Nats Park of which I will probably attend about 10 of them. Some one pointed out that if Nats go 14-4 and Mets go 10-9. that would create a tie in the East. This is why the margin for error is very very thin at this point.

    The oped in the Post today is SPOT ON!!! Only a blind foolish homer would take exception to it. basically, the oped echoed what I posted yesterday…no more excuses, no more “its baseball” start winning now or MW needs to get his ass out of DC!!!

    I love Trea!!! Why not trade Desi by 9/1 for the simple reason that the Nats need to get a player, any player instead of getting nothing when he is a free agent. Hell, go with Trea at short, and danny can fill in for either Rendon (who is cleary out of shape, sophmore slump, etc…) or Yunel. I know the homers will say but look at Desi now and my response is this…if it is going to take Desi 4 and one half months every year to get going after hitting at 200 and setting league records in fielding errors…what are you smoking????

    All the experts who predicted the Nats success and that the Nats have the best starting pitching in baseball are a joke. Nats may now have one of the bottom half dozen starting pitching in the MLB

    I still say 76-86, MW gone (THAN GOODNESS) and Mike Rizzo needs to fill in the holes which are now glaring!!

    • Section 222 - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:10 PM

      I’m not a blind foolish homer, but I will take exception to the Jerry Brewer column’s listing supposed team chemistry issues because of the Papelbon acquisition as an issue to be explored if the Nats fail to make the playoffs. That’s complete bunk and there’s no evidence for it whatsoever.

      Who’s Jerry Brewer anyway? Why don’t I recognize that name? Oh, maybe because the last time he wrote about the Nats was July 23, and since then he’s written 11 columns about the Washington football team and one about Tom Brady. I don’t read (or care) about football in July and August.

      • micksback1 - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:17 PM

        Jerry Brewer I believe is from seattle and he covered Seahaks, Mariners, etc.. for the Pot – Intelligenceer the past 5 seasons. He is more of an NFL reporter and he of course is experiencing a cultural shock covering the number one class organization of the NFL to now covering perhaps the worst organization in any sport, of course I mean Dan Snyder’s team.

        I know Jerry cover the nats daily and I would not rule out his theory on the Pap acqusition just yet. I think other posters in here have noted that the Nats bedside manner in dealing with player morale is questoinable at best

      • naterialguy - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:58 PM

        “Who’s Jerry brewer” Ann import from Washington state brought over top be a part of the new Washington Amazon post. He’s only there to sell.

    • soonernat - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:17 PM

      Mick – I’ll take that bet. The Nats will not go 15-25 over the remainder of the season. What should we wager? Also what is the timeline for MW’s firing? I believe that Matt Williams will be our Manager come Spring Training 2016….again what should we wager? Let’s start backing up our talk….

      • micksback1 - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:20 PM

        same wager as I have with Bowden, a Corona Light for me and a beer of you choice if you win at opening day in 2016.

        Of course MW is here for the duration of the season and I will bet whatever you like if Nats finish under 500 he is gone period

      • micksback1 - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:22 PM

        actually my bet with Bowden was nats would not win 82 games

      • soonernat - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:43 PM

        Mick – Beer it is! One for me when the Nats win more than 76 games this season and one more for me when Matt Williams is our manager on the first day of Spring Training 2016. 😉

  5. micksback1 - Aug 22, 2015 at 12:54 PM

    to add to why Desi should be traded for any player, maybe that player or future player is another Ross? regradless, a team needs to get something

  6. ArVAFan - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:01 PM

    Well, if a team ever looked as if it were playing under the influence of sleep deprivation, that was last night. Seriously, some of them looked as if they were unfamiliar with what to do with that little white thing rolling around the infield. Let’s see what they have after a decent night’s sleep in their own beds (the exception being Turner–if he got any sleep at all! But he’s young, and should bounce back more quickly than some of the other “slightly older” players).

    But Gio did remember to field his position, Byrce hit a homer, the weather and sunset were awesome, and we saw Trea debut. And it was watching baseball with my friends & fellow blog-mates (hi, Joe & B Seamhead!) , which beats pretty much all the alternatives.

    See you there tonight, back in 313.

    • natsjackinfl - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:13 PM

      Wish I could have been there, ArVaFan. See you in March, right?

      • ArVAFan - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:30 PM

        NatsJack: we’re planning to be in Florida for Spring Training, for sure! Dates to be determined, since we won “lunch or breakfast with an umpire at Spring Training” in a charity auction. So we’ll work around that date once that’s set. We like to see the workouts (and let’s face it: Florida beats DC in February for oh-so-many reasons), but we may need to come later next year. But we wouldn’t miss the possible “last year in Viera” for anything short of a family emergency. (And, by the way, I am always skeptical of construction deadlines, especially when building on landfill. I wouldn’t put any money on a “2017 in WPB” Spring Training).

      • natsjackinfl - Aug 22, 2015 at 2:01 PM

        Great point. This now makes 6 “major” announcements without the 1st bit of earth being moved that signifies the start of construction. Makes me think they may be scrambling for backup plans.

      • Another_Sam - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:17 PM

        arVAFan — Have you been to spring Training before? You’ll love it and you’ll be back every year. Jack, we’ll see you and GJ in March. Dates TBD. Is 2016 or 2017 the last year in Viera before the move to Vero Beach? [Or is it West Palm Beach or Greater Jupiter? I forget the details but my brother told me he saw that it’s reported as a done deal. Is that correct?]

        But enough about next year. Plenty more baseball this year. Play ball.

  7. coolhandbane - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:26 PM

    I didnt think of the jet lag and lack of good sleep for these guys.

    I am going to Wednesdays game and I hope to see Trea shine.

  8. Candide - Aug 22, 2015 at 1:46 PM

    We have three games next week. I know you don’t anoint someone a team’s savior his first week in the bigs, but I’m hoping Turner’s hustle turns out to be contagious. Remember how excited we all were a couple of years ago when Harper first came up and came within a whisker of beating out a routine infield grounder by running like all the demons of Hell were after him?

    Looking forward to seeing him develop; it will be nice to see some bat discipline from one of our middle infielders, for a change.

    • Section 222 - Aug 22, 2015 at 2:36 PM

      I remember that, and I think it was a comebacker to the mound that he almost beat out. He was electric.

      I doubt Turner will get that much playing time his first time up, and he may even be the guy to leave if Span returns soon. But it was fun to see him make an impact, albeit minor, in his first game.

      • Candide - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:06 PM

        Thanks – I googled the hell out of it, couldn’t find it. But you had the key word – “comebacker” – that found it for me. Against Chad Billingsley. Video is pretty choppy, and it wasn’t quite as close as I’d remembered, but he was only out by about a step on a play that he should have been out on by at least ten feet..

        http://m.mlb.com/video/v21007779/wshlad-harper-makes-major-league-debut-with-nats/?game_pk=318047

      • Section 222 - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:12 PM

        Ah, those were the days. Thanks for finding that recap. Great to see.

      • Section 222 - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:13 PM

        Remember how we trashed Jerry Hairston, Jr. for knocking the ball away from Ramos?

      • Candide - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:28 PM

        Remember how we trashed Jerry Hairston, Jr. for knocking the ball away from Ramos?

        Yeah… in fairness, back in those days, no one knew you didn’t HAVE to knock the ball out of Wilson’s mitt to make him drop it.

        Good times, good times…

    • rlndtln - Aug 22, 2015 at 2:40 PM

      Really hard to understand why we did not trade Fister for an OF.I have been saying since then and the move to a 4 man bench we needed at least a good defensive OF to replace Jason or Robinson whoever is playing LF late in a game when we are up a run or2 although that never seems to happen.Bye getting a trade for Fister you solve 2 problems.One you get something now for him as you will not give him an offer and two you go back to a 4 man bench with a LF at worst defensive player.

      • NatsLady - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:11 PM

        And what defensive outfielder exactly were you getting for Fister, who had been on the DL already this season, was demoted to the bullpen and is a “rental”? Were you getting one better than den Dekker, who is already on the (40-man) roster? No contending team needs a guy like that (and if they did, you’d only get prospects, not a major-league guy), and no rebuilding team wants a guy like that.

        Rizzo took the best choice of not-good choices, put him in the bullpen and hope he can either work out his problems or get injured enough so that he has to go back to the DL.

  9. NatsLady - Aug 22, 2015 at 2:59 PM

    Stayed for the entire game last night because the weather was so lovely. A fair number of people left early but think they all just stayed on Half Street to listen to the brass band. Really, for a 10-3 loss, it was a pretty good-natured crowd, I was impressed by everyone knowing who Trea Turner is.

    That’s three rookies we have now (Turner, Ross, Taylor) who can bring young energy to the team. Plus Bryce always has energy–unless he’s hurt, which he doesn’t seem to be. FP said Papelbon is “a lot of fun” in the clubhouse. Of course, he doesn’t know what happens behind closed doors, but I’ve yet to hear anything negative about Paps as a Nat. Same for Yunel, about whom we had doubts based on reputation.

    – For whatever reason, Gio matches with Lobaton. Gio was not the same after he got hit, but he insisted he was OK. Fister was only good for an inning before he blew up. As for using a pitcher to hit for Gio, that’s not that uncommon when a guy is lifted after only five innings, I’ve seen plenty of teams do it, short bench or not. (Bear in mind AL teams play with a “short bench” for every interleague game.)

    I thought we’d drop a reliever when we got back to DC, but who would you drop besides Fister? And if he won’t accept a DL stint you can’t force him too. I can see why he won’t. He’s a free-agent-to-be, he doesn’t want questions about his health hanging over him.

    – After a couple of good days at the plate, Werth is back to looking lost. He’s really poor in the field, and he MUST play deeper. Too many balls are going over his head. Playing shallow with the confidence you can break back is a speedy young man’s game–and he ain’t that.
    – Hard to diagnose what’s going on with Rendon but he’s not hitting the ball hard even when his bat touches it. He looked rusty and slow at 3B.
    – Yunel getting hurt in the first inning didn’t help, of course.

  10. Section 222 - Aug 22, 2015 at 2:59 PM

    Chase, if you’re reading, the call on Turner’s first AB was not “confirmed” as you said. Rather, the ruling was that the “call on the field stands,” which is what they say when there isn’t enough evidence to overturn the call. If the ump had called Turner safe that call would have stood too. This wasn’t a bang-bang play, it was a bang play, too close to tell conclusively in the video.
    http://m.mlb.com/video/topic/63817564/v394811883/milwsh-out-call-at-first-stands-in-the-7th-inning/?c_id=mlb

    If you skip to 2:35 or so of the video, you see the call, which was correctly explained by the Brewers’ announcers. And here are the official replay rules. The key language is in Paragraph J(3).
    http://m.mlb.com/official_rules/replay_review

    Finally, just for JoeS, here’s another call on the field that the replay officials didn’t have enough evidence to overturn, and it features a great one hop by Granderson and nifty pickup by the catcher Travis D’Arnaud:
    http://m.mlb.com/video/topic/63817564/v395099583/nymcol-grandy-nabs-hundley-at-home-call-confirmed/?c_id=mlb

    • Joe Seamhead - Aug 23, 2015 at 12:13 AM

      Just the way they practice it. Sort of.LOL!

  11. NatsLady - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:05 PM

    One other point. We may have our Aroldis Chapman already on the team. If Rivero can get righties consistently, he could be a closer, let’s say in 2017 when Paps and Storen are gone (Storen may be gone in 2016). Granted, he doesn’t hit 103, but he’s got a terrific arm and good composure.

    • rlndtln - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:09 PM

      Chapman comparison?

  12. Theophilus T.S. - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:08 PM

    Either Fister or Roark could stand a trip to the DL. The Nats need another bench player, badly, and it seems to me Reed Johnson is finished with his rehab trip. He’s not on the roster of any of the minor league teams. And he’s got a resume as a pinch-hitter.

    • NatsLady - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:17 PM

      As I said above, I doubt Fister will take a trip to the DL unless he is really hurt. Roark, of course, would do whatever the team needed, but you are taking your chances if Treinen or Rivero has to work more than one inning. Rivero’s been used a lot, hopefully not overused.

    • NatsLady - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:20 PM

      Upon thought, the guy who could probably stand a trip to the DL is Drew Storen.

  13. rlndtln - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:10 PM

    Too late.I said that weeks ago.nobody is listening.

    • NatsLady - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:13 PM

      You got that right.

    • Section 222 - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:18 PM

      You’re a broken record. No one who reads this blog doesn’t know your position on the short bench. We’re listening, we’re just not impressed with a one trick pony.

      • natsjackinfl - Aug 22, 2015 at 4:13 PM

        Just wait till Denard Span starts a game for the Nats. Can’t wait to hear rintintin’s explanation on that one.

  14. natsjackinfl - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:26 PM

    With Clint Robinson starting in left field over Werth, it pains me to say, what’s the difference?

    • Section 222 - Aug 22, 2015 at 3:48 PM

      C-Rob is a better hitter. 🙂

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