Wire Taps: Washington Nationals In Cincinnati, Chien-Ming Wang vs Dontrelle Willis Tonight.

WASHINGTON, DC - AUGUST 25: Justin Upton #10 of the Arizona Diamondbacks scores in the eighth inning ahead of the tag of Jesus Flores #26 of the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on August 25, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

• Programming Notes: The Washington Nationals look to end their three-game losing streak tonight when they play the first of three in Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati. It's a battle of the reclamation projects with Nats' right-hander Chien-Ming Wang facing Reds' lefty Dontrelle Willis. The Nationals have won Chien-Ming Wang's last three starts, with Wang (2-0) in those outings. The Reds are 0-4 in Willis' last four outings with the left-hander (0-2). Cincinnati dropped two of three to Washington when the two teams met at the start of the recently-completed Nats' homestand. Can the Nationals' snap the losing streak? Can Wang outduel Willis? MASN 2 HD, MLB.tv, 106.7 the FAN in D.C., 1500 WFED, Sirius/XM ch. 189. Who's Watching The Nationals?

• LINKS AND LINKS AND...

• NATS BEAT: 

• "If you wanted a list of all the players the Washington Nationals left on base Thursday night, you’d have been better off simply writing out the lineup." - "Nationals' offense continues lackluster stretch in 8-1 loss to Diamondbacks" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "Nationals right-handed reliever Ryan Mattheus lasted only two batters in Thursday's 8-1 setback to the Arizona Diamondbacks, leaving for what was reported as right shoulder tightness." - "Mattheus shoulder tightens again, Nationals search for answers" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com

• "Another budding young star is Yonder Alonso, the organization's top offensive prospect who replaced Jonny Gomes in left field last month and has been raking ever since." - "Series preview: Nats at Reds" - Mark Zuckerman, NatsInsider.com

• "'It was a combination of bad pitch selection and bad execution on my part,' Clippard said." - "A rare rough night for Tyler Clippard, more tightness for Ryan Mattheus" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "'Everybody that knew Flanny loved him,' the Nationals manager said. 'Whether he was the GM or in uniform or whatever, he was always a delight to be around.'" - "Davey Johnson remembers Mike Flanagan" - Ben Goessling, MASNSports.com

• "Johnson came to know Flanagan well. When Johnson managed the Orioles in the 1996 and 1997, Flanagan served as a team broadcaster." - "Davey Johnson on Mike Flanagan: ‘I just wish I had known’" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "Everyone who knew [Mike] Flanagan — and I did, although not well — understood that he was devastated when owner Peter Angelos fired him as executive vice president of baseball operations..." - "HELLER: Flanagan tragedy puts losing in perspective" - Dick Heller, Washington Times

• "I knew Mike Flanagan for the better part of the last 30 years. I never really socialized with him, but we had lots of conversations about baseball, and we did some radio together." - "No. 46" - Phil Wood, MASNSports.com

• "As news of his death rippled through the baseball community, Johnson was informed of the tragic news immediately following the Nationals’ 4-2 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks." - "Davey Johnson reflects on Baltimore bond he shared with Mike Flanagan" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "'After I saw that I wanted to go home and not watch any more TV,' Johnson said. 'And I didn't want to turn it on this morning.'" - "Johnson mourns Flanagan's sudden passing" - Steven Miller, nationals.com: News

• "Rodriguez already had a rehab assignment in early August with Double-A Harrisburg cancelled after a setback with his strained right oblique." - "Pudge to test oblique in rehab assignment" - Steven Miller, nationals.com: News

• "Two Nationals minor leaguers, first baseman Tyler Moore and starting pitcher Brad Peacock of Class AA Harrisburg, were named Eastern League all-stars today." - "Tyler Moore, Brad Peacock named Eastern League all-stars" - Adam Kilgore, Nationals Journal - The Washington Post

• "'It seems like we're a little flat,' manager Davey Johnson said. 'We usually look like we want it. I give credit to the opposing pitcher, but I think a lot of it is we just didn't go after it.'" - "Arizona Diamondbacks at Washington Nationals: Nats' offense can't cash in against D-Backs" - Steven Miller, MLB.com WSH Recap

• "'I know this part of my rehab, I was dead tired,' Mattheus remembered. 'I was exhausted. It is a long rehab and a long process. I am excited to see how (Strasburg) comes out of it.'" - "Mattheus: Strasburg heading into home stretch, but still has work to do" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com

• "[The Nationals] boarded a plane for Cincinnati on Thursday night having lost three straight to the Diamondbacks, finishing a once-promising homestand at 5-5." - "Nationals' offense comes up short again in frustrating loss to Diamondbacks" - Ben Goessling, MASNSports.com

• "For his part, Mattheus said there was no pain and his shoulder felt completely normal, especially after having thrown Wednesday night as well." - "Mattheus pulled again with right shoulder issue" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "Over their past three games, they have gone 1 for 29 with runners in scoring position and stranded 26 base runners." - "Nationals vs. Diamondbacks: Washington extends offensive drought in loss" - Adam Kilgore, The Washington Post

• "Opposing [Dontrelle] Willis in the opener of a three-game set in Cincinnati is another comeback story in Nationals right-hander Chien-Ming Wang." - "Washington Nationals at Cincinnati Reds: Comeback kids Wilis, Wang face off" - Anthony Fenech, MLB.com Preview

• "Nationals director of player development Doug Harris said while Moore's numbers have been off the charts he has also worked very hard on his fielding at first base." - "Tyler Moore and Brad Peacock named Eastern League postseason All-Stars" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com

• "Nationals catcher Ivan Rodriguez will take a big step in his lengthy rehab from a strained right oblique when he begins a rehab assignment this weekend with Single-A Potomac." - "Pudge to begin rehab assignment this weekend with Single-A Potomac" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times

• "Ryan Mattheus left an outing with right shoulder tightness for the second time in a week on Thursday, but the right-hander downplayed the soreness." - "Mattheus dealing with right shoulder tightness" - Steven Miller, nationals.com: News

• Your Daily Message From The Dalai Lama On Twitter (@DalaiLama): "I feel that a sense of compassion is the most precious thing there is." - 

• NATS MINOR LEAGUE UPDATES: 

• Class-A Auburn: "The Auburn Doubledays used a pair of long balls, one by Hendry Jimenez and the other by Justin Miller, to lead them to a series win over Mahoning Valley in a 4-1 decision at Eastwood Field on Thursday night." - "Long Ball Powers Auburn to Series Win" - Auburn Doubledays News

• Class-A Hagerstown: "Suns RHP Matt Swynenberg (6-3), the losing pitcher, narrowly missed a quality start after tossing 6.0 stanzas and allowing four earned runs on seven hits, while walking one and fanning four." - "RHP Cody Buckel Wins 8th to Propel Crawdads to Series Victory" - Hagerstown Suns News

Double-A Harrisburg: "Erik Arnesen started for the Sens and pitched 6.1 innings, striking out seven. He left with the Sens up 4-2 in the ballgame." - "Senators Go Extras to Beat NH 6-4" - Harrisburg Senators News

• Triple-A Syracuse: "[Roger] Bernadina crushed a home run in the bottom of the ninth to put the score at 12-4, but the game was already well out of reach." - "PawSox knock off Chiefs 12-4" - Syracuse Chiefs News

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

• NATSTOWN: 

• "As always, questions are edited for levity/clarity and I write my answer before reading his." - "My Answers to Boswell’s Chat Questions 8/22/11 edition" - Nationals Arm Race

• "Considering how Fielder is being paid $15.5 million this season and likely wants to get more on the free agent market, it’s a much better deal for the Nats to keep Morse..." - "Nationals Won’t Pursue Prince Fielder" - Ballpark Banter

• "Popping up along the third base line was 'Air Screech,' an inflated, dancing, oversize costumed version of the Nationals official mascot." - "Video: 'Air Screech' introduced at Nationals Park" - Presidents Race Fan, Let Teddy Win!

• NL EAST UPDATES: 

Phillies"They have four aces, two former MVPs and a roster stacked with guys who’ve made numerous All-Star teams and earned plenty of awards." - "First-place Phillies have depth beyond their four aces and All-Stars" - AP/The Washington Post

Marlins"With ace Josh Johnson out since May with shoulder inflammation, Marlins starters have slipped to 14th in the National League with an ERA of 4.52. They rank ahead of only the Astros and Cubs." - "Florida Marlins: Starting rotation loaded with concerns" - Craig Davis, South Florida Sun-Sentinel.com

Mets"In the first of three planned rehabilitation games with Double-A Binghamton, Jose Reyes went 0-for-1 with a walk and a run and played five innings at shortstop..." - "Mets' Jose Reyes goes 0-for-1 with walk and run in first rehab start with Double-A Binghamton" - Andy Martino, NY Daily News

Braves"Garza felt that it was more about balls finding holes than the Braves hitters beating him." - "Garza 'dumb-founded' by loss to Braves" - Sahadev Sharma, Chicago Cubs Blog - ESPN Chicago

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