Nationals News: Winning Hearts and Minds

WASHINGTON - MAY 04: Adam Dunn #44 of the Washington Nationals celebrates with teammates after hitting a home run in the sixth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Nationals Park on May 4, 2010 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

  Thomas Boswell rightly points out that the Nats have been given the opportunity to capture the hearts of DC sports fans. The Caps have collapsed, the Wizards are in shambles, DC United is awful and the Redskins don't start playing for months. The time is now.

  MASN will televise Stephen Strasburg's first AAA start, showing it on tape delay at 10:30 pm Friday, May 7th.

  Chien-Ming Wang will throw live batting practice sometime in the near future, and Jordan Zimmermann is "well ahead of schedule" in terms of his recovery from Tommy John surgery.

  Jim Riggleman wasn't concerned about Livan Hernandez's high pitch count -- 123 total, including 41 in the first inning.

  The Nationals have had to reach a number of times to cobble together a starting rotation, but have still managed to win.

  Mike Rizzo answered some questions about Stephen Strasburg's promotion to AAA.

  Ian Desmond worked through some issues with his swing with the help of Rick Eckstein and AA hitting coach Troy Gingrich.

  Frank Robinson returned to Nats Park to talk about diversity, and says he has gotten over his hard feelings toward the Nationals.

  The scoreboard (and all secondary scoreboards) went dark a number of times yesterday, but was fixed in time for Matt Capps' 11th save of the season.

  Tim Chambers, Bryce Harper's coach, says that Harper is very coachable. The Nationals are trying to hire Chambers as a scout.

  Jason Marquis will start throwing off of a mound today.

  John Lannan will miss his next start with left elbow discomfort. An MRI revealed a swollen flexor tendon, but no structural damage.

  June 4-6 appears to be the most logical timeframe for Stephen Strasburg's first major league start.

Around the League...

  Legendary Tigers broadcaster Ernie Harwell died yesterday after a battle with cancer. Nationals Journal has collected some thoughts from Steve McCatty, who worked with the Tigers after his playing career ended.

  A day after a Phillies fan was Tasered for running onto the field, another fan ran onto to the field -- but was not Tasered. A police investigation has determined that that Tasering was a justified use of force.

  Breaking news: Milton Bradley is upset. Again.

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