Amanda Comak covers the Washington Nationals for The Washington Times.
Ryan Zimmerman hit a double in his first at-bat on Monday, a home run in his second and struck out in his third. He explains why the third at-bat was his best one of the day.
The Nationals made their first round of cuts Monday morning, sending nine players out of major league camp and over to the minor league side. Anthony Rendon and Matt Purke, two of the Nationals' top 2011 draft picks, were among those cut. Outfielder Corey Brown, who Nationals manager Davey Johnson singled out as "the guy that impressed me most," was also sent to minor league camp, along with fellow outfielder Xavier Paul and catcher Sandy Leon. Infielders Jarrett Hoffpauir and Carlos Rivero, along with pitchers Rafael Martin and Austin Bibens-Dirkx were also cut.
Nationals manager Davey Johnson said Monday morning that Chien-Ming Wang and John Lannan, the two pitchers competing for the fifth spot in the Nationals' rotation, will both pitch Thursday when the New York Yankees visit Space Coast Stadium.
Nationals outfielder Michael Morse was back in the lineup for the first time in a week on Monday, hitting cleanup as the team's designated hitter against the St. Louis Cardinals. Bryce Harper said Monday morning that his left calf was feeling better. He tested it with a little running on Sunday and was hopeful he'd be able to get back into the lineup on Tuesday.
The reviews of Chien-Ming Wang's start Saturday were extremely positive. Wang was making his first start of the spring after throwing in a simulated game last Monday and he was clocked 88-91 mph with his fastball and had great sink. When the ball is sinking like that, one coach said, you know it's going to be a good day.
Gio Gonzalez stood on the mound as sheets of rain came pouring through Roger Dean Stadium Sunday afternoon. He thrust his arms out to his sides, wondering how much rain was enough for the umpires to decide he didn't need to face Yadier Molina with two outs in the fourth inning.
Injury updates on Michael Morse, Bryce Harper and Rick Ankiel, and why Xavier Paul has been absent from Nationals camp.
Corey Brown started and stopped so many times in 2011, looking back, it was basically a lost year. Brown was traded to the Nationals as part of the deal that sent Josh Willingham to Oakland, but hurt his ankle early in spring training and wasn't able to make an impact. He got out of the gate slow at Triple-A and never found his rhythm (he finished the year with a .235 average) but had a torrid month of August (he hit .351) to earn a September call-up. He arrived in Washington, had one major league at-bat, and went down with a staph infection in his right knee that required surgery.
John Lannan felt good about his outing in the Nationals' 5-5 tie with the Tigers, plus other notes from the split-squad.
In hopes of battling the inconsistency that has plagued him during his big league career, Ian Desmond revamped his batting stance this offseason to find more balance. But Nationals manager Davey Johnson hasn't been thrilled with the adjustments thus far this spring.
Prince Fielder on if he could have seen himself in D.C.: "Definitely. Why not?"
The Nationals just wrapped up their 3-0 loss to the Miami Marlins here in Jupiter. Stephen Strasburg was pleased with his three-inning stint. He felt he gave up really just one hard-hit ball, a triple to Jose Reyes, and had a fielding miscue to open the third inning that likely extended his time on the mound that frame. As a result, he threw the final 14 of his allotted 60 pitches in the bullpen. Next start out he'll be able to go up to 70-75 pitches, Nationals manager Davey Johnson said.
Chris Marrero took batting practice for the first time since November surgery to repair a torn hamstring and is extremely encouraged by his progress.
The Nationals who are not traveling to Jupiter for tonight's 7:05 p.m. game against the Miami Marlins just took the field for today's workout. Michael Morse and Adam LaRoche are among them.
Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper said Friday morning that the left calf tightness that scratched him from Thursday's game was feeling better but the 19-year-old had only hit and not tested the calf with running, which is when it bothers him. Harper took batting practice in the indoor batting cage Friday morning and planned to test the calf with running later during the team's workout. If he continues to feel good, Harper said he'd lobby to get back on the Nationals' trip to Lakeland on Saturday for a split-squad matchup with the Detroit Tigers.
By Rand Paul
Obama acts as though we no longer have a Constitution