Wire Taps: Washington Nationals' Weekend With Milwaukee, Bryce Harper's Confidence.

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 17: Prince Fielder #28 of the Milwaukee Brewers (R) walks off the field as Ivan Rodriguez #7 of the Washington Nationals celebrates with pitcher Tyler Clippard #36 after defeating the Brewers 8-4 during the first game of a doubleheader at Nationals Park on April 17, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

• Programming Note: Another Monday with no baseball. The Washington Nationals will be off til Tuesday night at 8:15 pm EDT when they take on the St. Louis Cardinals with John Lannan on the mound for the Nats against the Cards' Jake Westbrook. The Nationals head out on the road on a three-game win streak after sweeping the Brewers. Can the Nats keep winning outside of Nats Park? Does the offensive outburst in Sunday's doubleheader have the Nats' offense "firing on all cylinders"? What will happen the first time someone gets hit by a pitch in St. Louis? Will the Spring Training heat between the Nats and Cards carry into the 2011 season?

• LINKS AND LINKS AND...

• NATS BEAT:

• Twitter: @NationalsPR: "Including Marquis and Hernandez today, #Nationals starting pitchers have posted 7 straight quality starts."

• "'We know what he can do from right side,' Manager Jim Riggleman said, 'but he’s just getting better and better from the left side.'" - Riggleman on Danny Espinosa -"Danny Espinosa makes his impact felt — from the left side" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "'It's not about who's got the more good-looking names,' Hernandez said. 'We're working hard, and trying to be the best.'" - Livan Hernandez - "Nationals winning because opponents aren't walking" - Ben Goessling MASNSports.com

• "Yewri Guillen, an 18-year-old shortstop in the Nationals Dominican Republic academy in Boca Chica, died Thursday morning of bacterial meningitis..." - "Nationals prospect Guillen dies of bacterial meningitis" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "'When I try to do too much is when I'm not successful. None of us were concerned about our offense.'" - Danny Espinosa - "Milwaukee Brewers at Washington Nationals: Livan, Espinosa propel Nats to twin-bill sweep" - Todd Karpovich - MLB.com

• "Last winter there was some hand-wringing and oh no-ing when the Nationals failed to ink either Brandon Webb or Justin Duchscherer..." - "These misses are hits, so far" - Phil Wood, MASNSports.com 

• Your Daily Message From The Dalai Lama On Twitter (@DalaiLama): "When we are open to others and ready to show them our friendship and affection, this immediately creates a good environment."

• "'Fifteen games is nothing. We've got a long way to go, and a lot can happen,' first baseman Adam LaRoche said." - "Nats' lineup breaks out during doubleheader sweep" - Mark Zuckerman, CSN Washington

• "'My focus has changed this year a lot, to just pounding the strike zone as much as possible..." - Jason Marquis -"Jason Marquis bounces back" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "'It felt it like a cramp,' [Todd] Coffey said. 'The doc looked at it a couple of times, everything checked out. It's just a small strain.'" - "Coffey heads to disabled list with left calf strain" - Tom Karphovich - 

• "'I feel a lot more relaxed with that mindset, knowing that I’m just trying to throw strikes and let my defense help me out,'" - Jason Marquis - "Marquis and Hernandez heed call to arms as Nationals take two" - Nathan Fenno - Washington Times

• "'I am not a huge average numbers (guy) especially on April 17. If you just have good at-bats then over the course of the season everything will work out.'" - Jerry Hairston - "Hairston example of bench importance to Nats run" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com

• NATSTOWN: 

• "What's wrong with Bryce Harper?...NOTHING! - The Nationals Enquirer

• "Who would have thought that this band of baseball misfits and snot-nosed rookies would be 8-7 three weeks into the season and flirting within the top three spots in the division?" - "Washington Nationals Need To 'Error' On Side Of Caution To Win Games" - Andrew Kinback, SB Nation DC

• "Great starting pitching is probably the biggest headline, but on Sunday, the Nats offense exploded as the weather warmed up..." - "Nats Sweep Brewers; Move Above .500" - Joe Drugan, Capitol Baseball

• "Teddy takes out his frustrations on Milwaukee’s sausages" - Presidents Race Fan, Let Teddy Win!

• "Sunday's game saw just about every Nationals player who was in a slump, break out of it." - "Nationals Today: Screech Has A Birthday, Nats Sweep Brewers, Rodriguez Is Short...But Good" - Will Yoder, The Nats Blog

• "Does getting so much playing time come as a surprise to Nix? 'Not at all,' says Nix. 'You expect to come out and be ready to play every day.'" - "Laynce Nix steps up in Nats' early going" - Mike Henderson, Hendo's Hutch | Washington Nationals Daily News

• "Nats need to put Phils in rear-view mirror" - Rachel Levitin, MASNSports.com, Nationals Buzz

• SHARKNATSTOWN:

• "The Shark did get even when the IronPig's mascot ran on the field for a dance in the middle of the 8th." - "News on the Shark Front" - Sharkadina, Street Shark: Roger Bernadina's Unofficial Blog

• Nats Minor League News: 

• Triple-A Chiefs: "IronPigs' six-run eighth dooms Chiefs" - Syracuse Chiefs News - "Chiefs 1B Chris Marrero went 3-for-3 on the day, highlighted by a two-run homer in the third and a solo homer to lead off the fifth." 

• Double-A Senators - Brad Peacock: 5.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 9 K's - Harrisburg Senators Scoreboard

Class-A P-Nats: "P-NATS SWEPT IN WILMINGTON" | Potomac Nationals News "The Potomac Nationals lost both games in a Sunday doubleheader in Wilmington to conclude a series sweep at the hands of the Northern Division-leading Blue Rocks."

• Class-A Suns: "'I don’t think it’s a slump at all,' said Harper, the top overall pick of the 2010 draft. 'I’m not stressed out about it at all.'" - Bryce Harper - "Bryce Harper makes home debut for Hagerstown Suns in hitting slump" - Dave Sheinin, The Washington Post

• NL EAST UPDATES: 

Phillies: "Jose Contreras made a ninth-inning mess." - "Contreras adds drama to win" - Randy Miller, phillyBurbs.com : Phillies

Mets: "Face it, the Mets aren’t going anywhere this season. Daniel Murphy isn’t the answer, even as a stop-gap option. If the Mets did the unthinkable and attempted to demote Emaus, the team would have to offer him back to the Blue Jays..."  -  "Stop Toying With Emaus’ Playing Time" Eric Seidman, FanGraphs Baseball

Marlins: "1. They have the National League’s best bullpen ERA (1.89). The starters have a 4.65 ERA and are averaging 5 2/3 innings per outing." - "Florida Marlins: Five reasons why 8-6 is easy, hard to believe" – Juan C. Rodriguez, Sun-Sentinel

Braves: "Offensive Explosions By Gwinnett And Mississippi Highlight Sunday's Atlanta Braves Minor League Action" - cbwilk, Talking Chop

• Twitter: SI.com's Joe Posnanski (@JPosnanski): "I honestly do not think I could shut out the Mariners. But a quality start is not out of the question." 

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