Tonight's Top 5:
5. Stephen Strasburg Scratched: As a Washington Nationals fan I haven't felt this way since Nick Johnson broke his leg in the outfield of old Shea Stadium back in September of 2006 in a collision with ex-Nats' outfielder Austin Kearns. That sick feeling that something's not right sunk in when I saw Miguel Batista warming as the game broadcast came on the television this evening and the announcement was made that 22-year-old right-hander Stephen Strasburg had been scratched from his scheduled start. MASN's broadcast showed footage from the bullpen of Pitching Coach Steve McCatty watching closely during Strasburg's pregame bullpen session, and then cut to shots of Pudge and Cat consoling the Nats' '09 no.1 overall pick before he left the bullpen alone with a look on his face that made it clear something was wrong...
DC GM Mike RIzzo appeared on the broadcast about a half-an-hour later to inform fans of the fact that he himself had made the ultimate decision to keep Strasburg off the mound in spite of the pitcher's protestations and the Nats' general manager informed everyone that Strasburg would be having an X-ray and an MRI on his shoulder this evening....
• Postgame Strasburg Report: Dave Nichols from the Nats News Network is at the game and was in the post game press conference with the Nats' general manager, and he just sent out the following messages via Twitter -
"Post-game Rizzo: MRI on #Strasburg showed no labral or capsule damage in shoulder. Mild inflammation, will be re-examined tomorrow."
"More Rizzo: No answer on next start, wouldn't speculate about shutting #Strasburg down."
4. Tony Plush Is Back In The First:
Sure both of the throws from Braves' catcher Brian McCann sailed high, but that's just because he had to rush them when Nyjer Morgan stole second and then third and scored on an errant throw from the Braves' backstop that took off into left after Morgan had led off with a single over the mound and up the middle in the top of the first tonight. 1-0 Nats early right when they need a lift. Morgan collects his 26th and 27 stolen bases of the year...
3. Ian Desmond Does It All: Nats' shortstop Ian Desmond was perfectly positioned to the left of the second base bag to catch a seeing-eye line drive headed to center off Brian McCann's bat and end the top of the first, and when the Nats' 24-year-old infielder came up to bat for the first time tonight in the bottom of the second, he drove in both Roger Bernadina, who had singled, and Pudge Rodriguez, who had reached on a Chipper Jones' error with a line drive single on a first-pitch fastball to put the Nationals up 3-0 on Atlanta after two. Desmond ends the night 2 for 3 with 2 RBI's, just his second multi-hit game this month. Desmond gets help from first baseman Adam Dunn on a throw he bounces to first in the fifth and then Desi makes a DIY double play in the sixth look easy, fielding a chopper to second, stepping on the bag and throwing to first to get Brian McCann after Chipper had singled off Nats' lefty Sean Burnett to start the frame. Desi's RBI's only pad the lead, however, as Morgan's run fromis all the Nats need...Nats win 3-0.
2. Thank You, Miguel Batista: Called upon to make an emergency start when Strasburg was scratched, the Nats' rubber-armed reliever Miguel Batista tosses 5.0 scoreless striking out six, walking one and saving the Nationals from a second disaster after Strasburg's scratch. Batista thrills the 40,000+ in attendance, and combines with Burnett, 2.0 1 K, Drew Storen, (ed. note - "Who was angry and filthy in a bounce-back performance...") 1.0, 2 K, and Matt Capps, 1.0, 1 K, 25 saves.
"Adam Dunn: 'I stay where I want to stay, or I go and probably get a chance to play for a World Series.'
MLB.com's Bill Ladson published a story entitled, "Dunn pushing to remain with Nats long term", in which the Nats' big middle-of-the-order bat is quoted stating that he'd, "...like a four-year deal, but would listen if the team made a three-year offer..."
• Federal Baseball.com Recommends: 3-years/$40-$45M, bang. Done. In Rizzo We Trust.
• Miss The Game? The DC Faithful Were Scared At First, Then Elated:
|Num||Name - Comments|
|1||rachel216 - 129|
|2||sweetpearacer - 91|
|3||Jorgath - 83|
|4||wxguy - 60|
|5||Whiter Mage - 47|
|6||Doncosmic - 40|
|7||RoscoeNats - 35|
|8||Expos4 - 34|
|9||i12swim - 31|
|10||d_c_guy - 30|
|11||Princess Jazzy - 25|
Final Score: Nats 3, Braves 0.
Nationals now 43-57.
FULL GAME REPORT:
1 - Martin Prado sends a grounder to third for Ryan Zimmerman's Gold Glove to handle, but emergency starter Miguel Batista hits the second batter, Jason Heyward. Chipper Jones' groundout moves Heyward up, but Ian Desmond's got Brian McCann scouted perfectly when he lines toward center and into Desi's glove...Nyjer Morgan's leading off against the Braves' Tommy Hanson and he singles over the mound and up the middle. Morgan steals second on a high throw from McCann. Cristian Guzman's up, Morgan breaks for third and takes home when McCann's throw sails into left, 1-0 Nats. Guzman K's looking. Ryan Zimmerman hits a ground-rule double over the wall in center field, and takes third when Adam Dunn grounds into the shift. Josh Willingham flies out to right field to end the Nats' first.
2 - Eric Hinske K's swinging to start the Braves' second. Batista walks Troy Glaus. Ryan Zimmerman catches a pop fly from Alex Gonzalez. Melky Cabrera hits a two-out single to left to put two on. Tommy Hanson K's swinging at a full-count fastball...Roger Bernadina singles to center off Hanson and Pudge Rodriguez reaches safely on a throwing error by Chipper Jones. Pudge and Roger Bernadina both score when Ian Desmond lines to center on a first-pitch fastball from Tommy Hanson and a two-out run single. 3-0 Nats. Miguel Batista goes down swinging. Nyjer Morgan pops out to Chipper foul of third and though Desi steals second, Guzman K's to end the Nats' second.
3 - Martin Prado takes a two-strike bender inside for a called strike three for Batista. Jayson Heyward K's swinging at a changeup. Josh Willingham catches a liner to left off Chipper Jones' bat...Ryan Zimmerman grounds out to his counterpart at third. Adam Dunn K's swinging at a 95mph 1-2 fastball that keeps moving away. Josh Willingham flies out to Jayson Heyward in right to end a quick third, still 3-0 DC.
4 - Brian McCann K's swinging and sends his bat soaring into the seats. Eric Hinske singles to right with one down. Batista's sixth K comes on a breaking ball inside to Troy Glaus. Ryan Zimmerman throws to second for the force on a groundout by Alex Gonzalez...Roger Bernadina flies out to Hinske in left. Pudge Rodriguez goes down chasing a nasty bender that dives away for strike three. Ian Desmond is 2 for 2 with a grounder through short. Miguel Batista up with two outs and he grounds out to Gonzalez at short to end the inning.
5 - Miguel Cabrera singles to left off Batista and takes second on a sac bunt by Hanson. Ian Desmond throws low to first on a grounder by Martin Prado, Dunn scoops it. Jason Heyward grounds out to short, Desi's throw is true and the Nats are up 3-0 after four and a half...Nyjer Morgan tries to sneak around Troy Glaus but gets tagged out on a bunt toward first. Cristian Guzman's called out on strikes for out no.2. Ryan Zimmerman gets down 0-2 and K's looking at a fastball outside.
6 - Sean Burnett gives up a leadoff single to Chipper Jones who sends an arching liner to right. Ian Desmond fields a grounder by McCann behind second, steps on the the bag and throws to first, in time, double play. A two-out double to right by Eric Hinske gets Troy Glaus up, and Burnett throws a 93mph 2-2 fastball by Glaus to end the Braves' sixth...Adam Dunn grounds out to second in the Nats' half. Josh Willingham rips a liner off Martin Prado's backhand and beats the throw to first when Prado makes a nice play to stay with it. Roger Bernadina K's swinging for the second out. Josh Willingham steals second with Pudge up. Groundout to third ends the frame.
7 - Alex Gonzalez grounds out to short, Melky Cabrera grounds to second. Sean Burnett pops Matt Diaz up to short right and Guzman goes back to make the grab...Jonny Venters gets a fly ball to center from Ian Desmond for the first out of the Nats' seventh. Michael Morse grounds out to Chipper Jones. Nyjer Morgan grounds to short to end the seventh.
8 - Drew Storen comes on and gets a called strike three with a high 0-2 slider inside to Martin Prado. Jason Heyward drops his bat after another called strike three on a slider outside. Chipper Jones flies to left, Willingham makes the catch a little too close to Morgan...Cristian Guzman vs Venters. Chipper Jones makes a backhand stab and throw to first. ZImmerman and Dunn both K swinging. 3-0 Nats after eight.
9 - Matt Capps comes on to close it. Brian McCannn flies out to left. Eric Hinske flies to center. Troy Glaus takes a two-strike fastball for the third and final out. Nats win, 3-0 final.