Sure, the Washington Nationals came up empty against the Milwaukee Brewers last night... but Stephen Strasburg had a strong start, though he received no support, and didn't want to talk about it. The Nats fell to 42-41, just a game above .500... but... They did sign seven international free agents on the first day MLB teams were allowed to do so... Here's a list and some quick descriptions of the 16-year-old international FAs the Nats signed via the team's official press release:
"The Washington Nationals today agreed to terms with international free agents right-handed pitcher Edwin Adames, catcher Jose Cabello, right-handed pitcher Angel Guillen, left-handed pitcher Jose Jimenez, outfielder Victor Robles, outfielder Dany Rojas and catcher Edwin Trejos. Nationals Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Mike Rizzo and Director of International Scouting Johnny DiPuglia made the joint announcement.
"Adames, 16, is a 6-foot-2, 190 lbs. native of the Dominican Republic with an impressive three-pitch mix.
"Cabello, 16, is a power-hitting backstop from Venezuela. He is 5-foot-11, 185 lbs and possesses a strong throwing arm from behind the plate.
"The 16 year-old Guillen, who is currently 6-foot-2 and 155 lbs., is known as a strike thrower with three pitches. He signed out of Venezuela.
"Jimenez, 16, is a 6-foot-1, 190 lbs. southpaw that projects as a hard-throwing starting pitcher with good feel for his changeup. He hails from the Dominican Republic.
"Robles sports plus speed, a strong throwing arm and the overall athleticism required to play all three outfield spots. He is currently a 16 year-old, 6-foot-0, 185 lbs. native of the Dominican Republic.
"A 5-foot-9, 160 lbs. native of the Dominican Republic, Rojas is a 16 year-old left-handed hitter who projects to hit near the top of the lineup.
"Trejos, 16, is a 6-foot-0, 160lbs. native of Panama with above-average defensive skills and a line-drive hitting stroke at the plate."
There's more on the prospects below and more on the $ the Nats have available to sign international FAs this summer. The Nationals also announced a 40-Man roster move on Tuesday. Hard-throwing right-hander Cole Kimball was removed from the Nats' 40-Man roster and outrighted to Triple-A Syracuse, which means he cleared waivers and a spot is open on the 40-Man.
The Nationals also announced that 2012 1st Round pick Lucas Giolito would make his first GCL start of the summer as he works his way back from Tommy John surgery. Giolito's expeced to take the mound against the GCL Cardinals at 12:00 pm EDT this afternoon as MASNSports.com's Byron Kerr reported. Oddly, the LA Times apparently had this start date for Giolito's first post-TJS start back on June 6th, though not many noticed at the time.
So you see, there's lots of stuff going on to distract you from the Nationals' loss last night. Including the following links, which start... RIGHT NOW!!!:
• THE BIG STORY!!!:
• "If frustration or resentment had seeped in, [Stephen] Strasburg hid it. Rather than blaming teammates, he lauded them." - "Nationals again unable to provide Stephen Strasburg with any support in 4-0 loss" - Adam Kilgore, The Washington Post
• NATS BEAT:
• "The Nationals scored 13 runs on Sunday afternoon in Gio Gonzalez’s latest outing. They scored 10 more in Jordan Zimmermann’s start on Monday." - "No support for Stephen Strasburg as Nationals fall 4-0" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times
• "For the fourth time this season, Stephen Strasburg allowed zero earned runs in a start for the Washington Nationals, lowering his ERA to a minuscule 2.24." - "Storen, slumbering bats undo Strasburg's latest gem" - Ben Standig, Comcast SportsNet Washington
• "Strasburg has needed just 65 pitches to get through five innings, and outside of a two-on, one-out situation in the fourth, he's encountered little trouble thus far tonight." - "Nationals Pastime: Brewers can't touch the Strasburg curve, Nats can't give Strasburg runs (updated)" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com
• "There was no score until the eighth inning, when the Brewers scored all four runs against reliever Drew Storen..." - "Milwaukee Brewers at Washington Nationals - July 2, 2013" - Bill Ladson, MLB.com WSH Recap
• "In many ways, Stephen Strasburg is enjoying the best season of his career." - "Stephen Strasburg is pitching far better than his record" - James Wagner, Washington Post
• "The Milwaukee Brewers couldn't hit Stephen Strasburg's nasty curveball and lost their own starting pitcher to a hamstring injury in the sixth inning." - "Brewers outlast Strasburg, top Nationals 4-0" - Joseph White, AP/WTOP.com
• "[Stephen] Strasburg has now allowed two earned runs or fewer in last eight starts (and one earned run or fewer in seven of those eight), but it hasn't mattered." - "Nationals Pastime: Strasburg on lack of run support, Harper on the drop" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com
• "The Nationals’ belief that their bullpen could survive with one left-hander has been one of the issues plaguing the team during the first half of the season." - "Tom Gorzelanny, Michael Gonzalez return to Washington" - James Wagner, Washington Post
• "For the first time since April 14, the Nationals are as close to having their full complement of players as they will likely get all year." - "Optimism abounds in Nationals' clubhouse at midpoint" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times
• "After busting out offensively in two wins including the series opener against Milwaukee, the Nationals reverted to their season-long punchless form, at least for one night." - "Instant analysis: Brewers 4, Nats 0" - Ben Standig, CSNWashington.com/NatsInsider
• "The Nats loaded the bases off [Wily] Peralta - who came into the game with the third-worst ERA in baseball - in the first, but were unable to push anything across." - "Nationals Pastime: Johnson discusses Nats' 4-0 loss" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com
• "Ross Detwiler (2-6, 4.13 ERA) will toe the rubber for Washington. The southpaw is 0-3 with a 7.15 ERA since his last victory, which came on May 10." - "Milwaukee Brewers at Washington Nationals - July 3, 2013" - Zack Meisel, MLB.com Preview
• "'It depends on how [Dan Haren] comes through tomorrow,'" [Davey] Johnson said. 'But the ball's coming out of his hand real good, his cutter had a little better tilt.'" - "Detwiler set to make start; Haren getting healthy" - Bill Ladson and Tom Schad, nationals.com: News
• "If he comes out of the simulated game OK, [Dan] Haren will rejoin the Nats' rotation next week, possibly on July 8 or 9." - "Nationals Pastime: Detwiler good to start tomorrow, Haren could rejoin rotation next week" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com
• "A lot happened to Nationals reliever Drew Storen to make everything unravel in Tuesday's four-run eighth inning for Milwaukee." - "Storen will focus on holding runners, controlling pitches after loss" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com
• "If [Bryce] Harper makes the team, whether as a starter or reserve, the Nationals would face a decision." - "Nationals would let Bryce Harper play in All-Star Game" - Adam Kilgore, Washington Post
• "Although he missed a lot of action, [Bryce] Harper still ranks fourth among National League outfielders in All-Star balloting..." - "Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper, third baseman Ryan Zimmerman looking for boost in All-Star voting" - Bill Ladson, nationals.com: News
• Listen while you link?:
• "Despite missing 31 games with a knee injury, outfielder Bryce Harper continues to be in the top four in National League outfield voting for the All-Star Game, which is July 16 at Citi Field." - "Johnson would place no restrictions on Harper in All-Star game" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com
• "The Nationals spent $650,000 on the seven free agents, and they plan to use all $1.85 million of their bonus pool." - "Nationals sign seven international free agents" - Adam Kilgore and James Wagner, Washington Post
• "The largest bonus, which was six figures, went to center fielder Victor Robles from the Dominican Republic, according to a source." - "Nationals sign seven international free agents as July 2 signing period opens" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times
• "The international free agent signing period started today, and the Nationals have made a handful of moves within the first 24 hours, agreeing to terms with seven 16-year-olds." - "Nationals Pastime: Nats sign seven international free agents" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com
• "For a stretch through May and June, [Denard] Span fouled multiple balls off his right foot — a painful result of what he felt was some of that discomfort at the plate." - "Denard Span finding comfort at the plate of late" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times
• "Statistically speaking, center fielder Denard Span is having the worst season of his six-year Major League career." - "Span’s swing showing signs of improvement" Tom Schad, All Nats All the Time
• "[Davey] Johnson offered a technical explanation for [Denard] Span's struggles in his first year with the Nationals." - "Span getting swing of things" - Ben Standig, CSNWashington.com/NatsInsider
• "The Nats now have 39 players on the 40-man roster. That does not include reliever Christian Garcia, who is on the 60-day disabled list and is currently on a rehab assignment with Syracuse." - "Nationals Pastime: Nats outright Cole Kimball to Triple-A" - Dan Kolko, MASNSports.com
• "The Nationals outrighted right-hander Cole Kimball to Class AAA Syracuse, taking the once-promising, now-rehabbing reliever off their 40-man roster." - "Nationals remove Cole Kimball from 40-man roster" - Adam Kilgore, Washington Post
• "Lefty relievers Tom Gorzelanny and Michael Gonzalez were two reasons the Nationals won the National League East in 2012..." - "Former Nats Gonzalez, Gorzelanny back in DC" - Bill Ladson and Tom Schad, nationals.com: News
• Your Daily Message From The Dalai Lama On Twitter (@DalaiLama):
Despite the superficial differences between us, we need to have a sense that all 7 billion human beings belong to one human family.— Dalai Lama (@DalaiLama) July 2, 2013
• NATIONAL(S) BEAT:
• "Nationals scouts have been tied to starting pitchers, such as the Cubs’ Matt Garza." - "Trade Talk: The Washington Nationals" - John Bonnes, StarTribune.com
• "The 'Eat Face' movement dates to June 20, when heartily bearded Washington outfielder Jayson Werth offered this nugget on how to stop the team's long losing streak..." - "Washington Nationals Steal the Miami Zombie as a Rally Cheer" - Tim Elfrink, Miami New Times
• "'We wanted to snap that losing streak, to do whatever we needed to do to figure it out,' [Martin] Maldonado said. 'We are grown men here. We know what we have to do to win games.'" - "Milwaukee Brewers at Washington Nationals - July 2, 2013" - Adam McCalvy, MLB.com MIL Recap
• "Nationals’ Fan Ready to Fight Any Pitcher Who May Throw at Bryce Harper [GIF]" - Stephen Douglas, The Big Lead
• NATS MINORS:
• GCL Nats: "'The 6-foot-6, 225 lb., Giolito "has thrown the ball well,' [Doug] Harris said. "'Ball is coming out of his hand with good life and his curveball has shown very good depth.'" - "Top 2012 pick Giolito to make season debut Wednesday for GCL Nats" - Byron Kerr, MASNSports.com
• Class-A Auburn: "The Doubledays (6-8) won in spectacular fashion as Bryan Lippincott's 3-run home run capped Auburn's comeback win against the Batavia Muckdogs (6-7) Tuesday night." - "Exciting Ending in Falcon Park" - Auburn Doubledays News
• Class-A Auburn: "With two on and two out in the bottom of the ninth, Bryan Lippincott looked down the third base line to Auburn Doubledays manager Gary Cathcart for some guidance." - "Lippincott's three-run homer lifts Auburn Doubledays to win over Batavia" - Jeremy Houghtaling, Auburn Citizen
• Class-A Hagerstown: "The Suns raced out to a 3-0 lead in the first inning. With one out 2B Tony Renda walked. First baseman Shawn Pleffner then belted a two-run home run to right-center field, his third of the season." - "Hagerstown downs West Virginia for third straight win" - Jeff Clark, Hagerstown Suns News
• Class-A Potomac: "Right-hander Dan Haren is slated to throw a simulated game on Wednesday afternoon at Nationals Park." - "Wilson Ramos continues rehab, Dan Haren to throw sim game & Lucas Giolito to pitch Wednesday in GCL" - Amanda Comak, Washington Times
• Class-A Potomac: "The rehab process for [Wilson] Ramos has been longer than it was for Bryce Harper..." - "Wilson Ramos runs well in rehab for Potomac, due back to Nats on Thursday" - Roman Stubbs, Washington Post
• Class-A Potomac: "[The] Potomac Nationals (49-30, 7-3) received a two-run blast from C Adrian Nieto in the bottom of the 7th inning to down the Winston-Salem Dash (45-37, 7-5) by the final score of 5-3." - "Nieto Carries P-Nats to 5-3 Victory Over Dash" - Potomac Nationals News
• Double-A Harrisburg: "The Senators tied the game in the sixth when Sandy Leon drew a leadoff walk and eventually came around to score on an RBI double from Brian Goodwin." - "Four Errors Sink Sens 2-1 in Erie" - Marshall Kelner, Harrisburg Senators News
• Double-A Harrisburg: "Mighty good for the second straight start since arriving in Harrisburg on June 25 from Class A Potomac, Taylor Hill (1-1) surrendered six hits, walked one and fanned three before leaving after seven innings." - "Taylor Hill deals for second straight start; offensive struggles continue; schedule update; Harrisburg Senators game notebook" - Michael Bullock, PennLive.com
• Triple-A Syracuse: "The Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Washington Nationals, split a Tuesday evening doubleheader with the Rochester Red Wings." - "Chiefs split doubleheader in Rochester" - Syracuse Chiefs News
• via Twitter:
INF Zach Walters has been selected to the 2013 International League All-Star team.— Nationals PR (@NationalsPR) July 3, 2013
• "3B Anthony Rendon, .310/.360/.431, 1 HR, 1 SB in 30 games with the Washington Nationals. MLB Debut: April 21, 2013." - "Wells On Baseball Prospect Watch: National League" - Kevin J. Wells, Washington Times Communities
• "In truth, the New Times author — Managing Editor Tim Elfrink — doesn’t object to face-eating zombie imagery in sports; it’s just that he thinks Miami should have first dibs." - "Miami writer objects to Nats ‘EatFace’ movement" - Dan Steinberg, D.C. Sports Bog
• "Much to the Nationals’ dismay, Wily Peralta (ND, 5-9) also looked sharp. The 24-year-old right-hander allowed just three hits in 5.1 innings pitched and walked only two Nationals during his stint." - "Washington Nationals Game 83 Review: Strasburg short-changed by Nats bullpen in 4-0 loss to Brewers" - Alyssa Wolice, District Sports Page
• "Whatever you do, just don't ask Stephen Strasburg about run support" - Nats Enquirer
• "Seriously, stop what you’re doing and Vote Bryce Harper for the All-Star Game" - Half Street Heart Attack
• "WFY: How do you feel about the overall direction of the franchise? Did they max out with a couple of playoff appearances during Prince Fielder’s time with the team? @LeavittDC:These questions are depressing me." - "2013 Nats vs. Brewers Q&A and prediction with @LeavittDC" - William F. Yurasko, William World News
• NL EAST UPDATES:
• Marlins: "'We were sloppy in all aspects of the game, it seemed,' Marlins manager Mike Redmond said." - "ATLANTA: Relievers get rocked as Miami Marlins fall to Atlanta Braves" - Andre C. Fernandez, MiamiHerald.com
• Braves: "[Chris] Johnson, Justin Upton and Brian McCann had three hits apiece, and Kris Medlen (6-7) got his fifth win in six starts..." - "Braves get 16 hits, without homer, in rout of Marlins" - David O'Brien, www.ajc.com
• Phillies: "The Philies had been so sorry for so long that it really seemed their forever fate. Ryan Howard intervened." - "In defense of Ryan Howard" - Dick Jerardi, Philadelphia Daily News
• Mets: "As it turns out, the key to the Mets’ plate success wasn’t David Wright, Daniel Murphy or even the streaking Josh Satin. It was a nearly two-hour rain delay." - "Mets bats wake up for Jeremy Hefner after rain delay in 9-1 rout over Diamondbacks" - Stephen Lorenzo, NY Daily News