Nationals News: Homecoming Turnaround? We Hope...

ST. LOUIS - MAY 17: Adam Dunn #44 of the Washington Nationals reacts to striking out against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on May 17, 2010 in St. Louis, Missouri. The Cardinals defeated the Nationals 6-2. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

  The Nationals' plan for Strasburg is the "most closely watched pitching development plan in the history of baseball."

  Ian Desmond is really putting it together in May, posting a .306/.340/.490 line with a 14.4 UZR/150, good enough to be fourth in the majors.

  Ben Goessling spoke with Doug Harris, the Nats' player development director, and got updates on a number of minor leaguers.

  Nationals News Network points to the Nats' biggest problem -- their shrinking offense. Through the beginning of the season, they had been winning one-run games, but now their luck has turned, and they're losing them.

  Adam Dunn wasn't in St. Louis for yesterday's game because he had returned to D.C. for a "minor procedure" that we decided was probably butt surgery in last night's GameThread.

  Jim Palmer says that Tyler Clippard's fastball command has been a bit off recently, leading to his struggles.

  FJB proposes that perhaps Stan Kasten brought Drew Storen up earlier than Strasburg to stick it to Scott Boras, Stephen Strasburg's agent.

  Tim Lemke doesn't understand why the Nats used their second first round draft pick on a closer.

  Ryan Zimmerman and his 99 career home runs tie him for tenth on the Expos/Nationals all-time home run leaders list.

  If the Nationals are not in contention later in the summer, they could trade Matt Capps, bringing Drew Storen one step closer to the closing role.

  Thomas Boswell lowers expectations on Stephen Strasburg, saying he'll have some rough patches before he becomes brilliant. (HT to PerryMason)

  40 games into the season, the opening phase is over, and Ben Goessling says that now is when we really get to see what kind of team the Nationals are.

  Tyler Clippard is helping Collin Balester transition to life as a reliever. Balester is currently pitching in extended spring training in Florida.

  Stephen Strasburg's planned start last night was postponed to tonight at 7 due to the "Strasburg effect," his propensity to bring rain with him wherever he goes.

  Bill Ladson interviewed Drew Storen after his major league debut on Monday.

Around the League...

  Forbes Magazine has ranked the Yankees the most valuable brand in all of sports. Woop-dee-doo.

  The Dodgers put Andre Ethier on the DL yesterday. A shame, because he was leading the NL in batting average, RBIs and was tied for the most home runs.

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