Wire Taps: Bryce Harper At The All-Star Futures Game, Washington Nationals At The All-Star Break.

PHOENIX, AZ - JULY 10: U.S. Futures All-Star Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals is interviewed by Peter Gammons of the MLB Network prior to the 2011 XM All-Star Futures Game at Chase Field on July 10, 2011 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

• Programming Notes: No baseball today. What to do, what to do? Tyler Clippard's out in Arizona waiting to pitch in the All-Star Game, having flown out there with Troy Tulowitzki after the Nats beat the Rockies Sunday afternoon. Bryce Harper went 0 for 4, showed off his arm and heard some boos. Why boo Harper? The first-half ended a few weeks back, the "second-half" starts with a series in Atlanta. All I can think about is enjoying Jordan Zimmermann's work on the mound while we can this season. No baseball today, what to do, what to do?

• LINKS AND LINKS AND...

• Bryce Harper Beat: 

• "Regarding his fruitless night at the plate, he said, 'You’re facing all-stars, and that’s what’s going to happen. I ... got blown away a little bit. I’ve got to hang with it and keep my chin up.'" - "Futures Game live-blog: The Bryce Harper show moves west" - Dave Sheinin, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "Harper saw four pitches in his first at-bat, a battle against Atlanta Braves top prospect Julio Teheran, who made his major league debut this season." - "Hitless night isn't a downer for Harper" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "The scenes around Bryce Harper and Brad Peacock after Sunday's All-Star Futures Game were about as different as their paths to this point." - "Bryce Harper takes the headlines, but Brad Peacock outshines him" - Ben Goessling, MASNSports.com

• "He recalled going 0-for-5 with four strikeouts in his last such game. And when was that? "Sophomore year of high school,' [Harper] said. 'So, like last year.'" - "Harper soaks in All-Star experience" - Mark Zuckerman, CSNWashington.com

• Twitter: SI.com's Jerry Crasnick @jcrasnick: "Bryce Harper with an amazing display of arm strength, to no practical purpose." -

• Twitter: SI.com's Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick): "Hey, If I'm 18 and I can throw the ball from the LF wall to the plate on the fly on national TV, I'd probably do it just for fun, too."  

• Brad Peacock Break:

• "'It's nice to have them here,' Peacock said Saturday. 'My dad is retired. He comes up five out of the six months of the year to watch me throw. I like that -- I like that a lot.'" - "Nationals top pitching prospect Brad Peacock excited to play in XM All-Star Futures Game" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com

• "In the past, Peacock had thrown from a three-quarters arm slot away from his body, allowing hitters to see his grip on the ball and have an easier time identifying what he would throw." - "Brad Peacock riding improved delivery to elite prospect status" - Ben Goessling, MASNSports.com

• "A small change this spring to help him improve his deception has paid huge dividends for Peacock, ranked the No. 42 prospect in baseball in Baseball America's mid-season report." - "Improved deception nets immediate returns for Peacock" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

Back To The Harper Beat: 

• "He went 0-for-4, he struck out twice, he was the recipient of a smattering of boos, and he's still the best prospect in baseball." - "Future Shock: Futures Game Stars" - Kevin Goldstein, Baseball Prospectus

• Twitter: New York Daily News' Ken Davidoff (@KenDavidoff): "#Nationals are so protective of Bryce Harper, I'm surprised they let him step into batter's box at #FuturesGame without a security escort." 

• "When Washington Nationals minor league player Bryce Harper heard the Angels had called up Mike Trout last week, you couldn't blame him if his first thought had been, 'Hey, what about me?'" - "Bryce Harper shows off polite side at All-Star Futures game" - Kevin Baxter, baltimoresun.com

• "While playing for Hagerstown, Harper was playing right and center field. He is now playing left field for Harrisburg and has looked like he has played the position for years." - "Double-A coach Tony Beasley in awe of Bryce Harper's talent" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com: News

Bryce Harper Post Game: 

• via cnati'sTV on YouTube.

• NATS BEAT:

• "Entering today, Zimmerman’s run support of 2.98 per game was the third lowest in the National League, and in five of his losses, the Nationals scored two runs or fewer." - "Jordan Zimmermann not fretting over exit in seventh" - Gene Wang, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "We have to seek out coaches and managers for this information because Werth, it seems, has been rendered utterly speechless by his struggles." - "DALY: Werth's struggles followed by silence" - Dan Daly, Washington Times

• "Maybe Rockies manager Jim Tracy shouldn’t have pulled his starting pitcher. Maybe closer Matt Reynolds shouldn’t have thrown a curveball." - "Ankiel came through in close encounter" - Nick Ellerson, Washington Times

• "'When you're in a close game, you never really are too sure what's going to happen, but Jordan was phenomenal,' said Washington reliever Tyler Clippard..." - "Colorado Rockies at Washington Nationals: Zimmermann sharp as Nats blank Rockies" - Steven Miller, MLB.com WSH Recap

• "Perhaps the 4 days off for the All-Star Game will re-charge his batteries. I hope so. I've had scouts tell me they think he's hurt, and is playing through the pain to justify his contract, which would be mistake." - Phil Wood on Jayson Werth"Body language can easily be misinterpreted" - Phil Wood, MASNSports.com

• "Their $126 million right fielder has a broken swing. Their franchise third baseman has played only 34 games. Their .235 team batting average is better than just three team." - "Nationals get even vs. Rockies" - Ryan O'Halloran, CSN Washington.com

• "Jerry Hairston Jr. is eligible to come off the 15-day disabled list during the All-Star break, but the Nationals' utility player is targeting a July 18 return in the series opener in Houston." - "Hairston eyeing July 18 return to Nats' lineup" - Steven Miller, nationals.com

• "By standing exactly at .500 exiting the All-Star break, the Nationals have emerged as the surprise story of the season in the National League East and beyond." - "Washington Nationals at Atlanta Braves: Nats to be tested out of second-half gate" - John Schlegel, MLB.com Preview

• "'Jayon and I haven’t done crap,' Zimmerman said." - "Nationals head into break on positive note" - Gene Wang, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• Your Daily Message From The Dalai Lama On Twitter (@DalaiLama): "Whether we like it or not, we're all connected, and it is unthinkable to be happy all by oneself." 

NATS MINOR LEAGUE UPDATES: 

Class-A Auburn: "The obscure ten-run frame was even too much for the scoreboard at Falcon Park, which only allows space for one-digit." - "Ten-Run Sixth Stuns the Jammers in Doubledays Win" - Auburn Doubledays News

• Class-A Hagerstown: "Suns LHP Paul Applebee, although not factoring into the decision, tossed 5.0 innings and allowed two earned runs on four hits without walking a batter and fanning three." - "Hagerstown Sweeps West Virginia" - Hagerstown Suns News

• Class-A Potomac: "Sammy Solis shut down the Lynchburg Hillcats for seven innings and got just enough run support as the Potomac Nationals leveled the series with a 2-0 win at City Stadium on Sunday night." - "SOLIS SO GOOD: PITCHES NATS TO 2-0 WIN" - Potomac Nationals News

• "Ramirez wasn't hitting this way in the first half of the season, so he got with the coaching staff and put in the extra work to figure out what was going wrong." - "Prospect Ramirez sees bat wake up just in time for Potomac to get going" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com

Double-A Harrisburg: "Erik Arnesen and Eric Surkamp hooked up in a pitcher's duel with the Senators breaking through first in a big way." - "Senators fall to Richmond 4-3 in walk-off fashion" - Terry Byrom, Harrisburg Senators News

• "What also makes the Senators' run stand out is young players , including prospects like Derek Norris, Brad Peacock, Patrick McCoy and Harper." - "VanAllen is major part of first-place Senators' relief corps" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com

Triple-A Syracuse: "The Chiefs finally came up to the plate down 2-0 but didn't take long to cut into the lead. Matt Antonelli crushed a one-out home run over the left field fence to pull Syracuse within 2-1 just two batters in." - "Chiefs lose third straight" - Syracuse Chiefs News

• "Monday’s News & Notes" - NationalsProspects.com

SHARKNATSTOWN: 

• "Shark must have been inspired by all the Shark fans in attendance including myself and some fierce Mini-Sharks..." - "Shark Breaks Up Pitcher's Duel" - Sharkadina: Roger Bernadina's Unofficial Blog

NATSTOWN:

• "Using what the pitcher called his best slider all season, Zimmermann dominated the Rockies for 6 1/3 innings, shutting them out and allowing just four hits, walking none and striking out six." - "GAME 92 REVIEW: Nats End First Half on Winning Note" - Dave Nichols, Nats News Network

• "The sell-out crowd 45,259 that included President Richard M. Nixon witnessed some of the hardest hit home runs in All Star game history." - "Remembering the Last All-Star Game played in the Nation's Capital" - Mark Hornbaker, History's Perspective | Washington Nationals Daily News

• "Roster expansion, dozens of pitching changes, and yanking the starters after 3 innings have completely devalued the game itself." - "All Star Game opinions/Nats all-star review" - Nationals Arm Race

• "There have been a few dark spots, but the Nats season has generally been a pleasant surprise for the team and fans alike." - "State of the Nats at the All-Star Break" - Keara Dowd, Win for Teddy

• "Of particular interest, around the 25 second mark, Harper explains his impressive yet ill-advised display of arm strength on a 325ish ft." - "Bryce Harper talks about showing off his arm in the Futures Game" - Nats Enquirer

• "We’ve reached the point where the dimensions of a championship contending Nationals team are starting to take shape." - "Envisioning the 2013 Nationals (Part one – the pitchers)" - Nat Anacostia, Nats Noodles

• "So what were the surprises that helped (and hindered) the Nats progress to this point? Let's go over our top 5." - "Nats at the Break: First-Half Surprises" - Joe Drugan, Capitol Baseball

NL EAST UPDATES: 

Marlins: "With injuries decimating the Marlins’ staff last July, then-manager Edwin Rodriguez summoned Marinez from the farm system, hoping he could bolster a struggling bullpen that had blown four consecutive saves." - "Jhan Marinez offers a glimpse into the future" - Matt Forman, MiamiHerald.com

• Mets: "Beltran has proved the doubters wrong this season. While he may no longer be a threat to steal bases, he’s actually been alright on the base paths this season — posting a positive Bsr this season." - "A Tale of Two Citi Fielders" - Chris Cwik, FanGraphs Fantasy Baseball

Braves: "Atlanta starting pitcher Tommy Hanson deserved to be on the All-Star team. And here's some proof from The Atlanta Baseball Show's Bill Shanks." - "Scout.com: The Case for Tommy Hanson" - Bill Shanks, TheAtlantaBaseballShow.com

Phillies/Braves: "It was easy to get worked up over this series, but in the grand scheme of things, it wasn't nearly as significant as our emotions may have had us believe." - "Atlanta Braves vs. Philadelphia Phillies Series Recap" - moorebraves, Talking Chop

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