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Wire Taps: Washington Nationals' Opening Day revisited; All-Star Game in D.C.

The Washington Nationals dropped the season-opener to the New York Mets, and since they always schedule an off day after Opening Day in case of a rainout, Nats fans (and players) have to wait until 7:00 PM tomorrow to get past this one. Links might help...

H.Darr Beiser-USA TODAY Sports

NatsTown is coming down hard on Ian Desmond after the first of his two errors yesterday led to two runs scoring which eventually ended up providing the margin of victory for the New York Mets.

Unfortunately, there's no game today, so it looks like there will be another 24 hours of lamenting what Nats' skipper Matt Williams described as an "overzealous" attempt to make a play far away from Desmond's position at short.

We talked about the error, the Nats' season-opening loss to the Mets and more on Nats Nightly last night. If you didn't see it in yesterday's "How to FBB" post, Nats Nightly is the post-game podcast we do on most nights after Nationals' games with Doghouse and The District Sports Page's Dave Nichols.

We fired the show up once or twice this winter to discuss the Max Scherzer deal and the Nationals' winter moves, but now that the season is underway, we'll hopefully be doing a show every day.

Take a listen to the first episode of the season while you go back through the last twenty-four hours of links and relive Opening Day.

Check Out Baseball Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with District Sports Page Nats Nightly on BlogTalkRadio

And now on to the links...


Desmond's overzealous attempt to catch a pop-up:

• "Desmond had a chance to watch the replay of his first error after the game and was shaking his head." - "Desmond, Uggla and Williams react to dropped pop-up in loss to Mets" - Byron Kerr,

• "Second baseman Dan Uggla backed up and called for the ball, only to see Desmond charge across the infield thinking he had a chance at it." - "Desmond’s errors loom large in Nats’ season-opening loss to Mets" - Chase Hughes, Nats Insider

• "The Nats threatened in the first after center fielder Michael A. Taylor singled and third baseman Yunel Escobar reached on an error." - "Nationals Pastime: Desmond's errors cost Scherzer lead (Nats fall 3-1)" - Chris Johnson,

• "Nats shortstop Ian Desmond came all the way over and bizarrely called off second baseman Dan Uggla, who was camped under the descending ball." - "Nationals Pastime: Errors undo Scherzer's spectacular debut" - Chris Johnson,

• "But a routine popup to second turned into a ghastly error by Ian Desmond and set the stage for disaster..." - "Mets 3, Nats 1: Desmond errors spoil Scherzer’s debut" - Mark Zuckerman, Nats Insider

Max Scherzer's Nationals debut:

• "Even though the team made errors behind him, Scherzer felt he should have picked up his team and get the key outs, especially the four-pitch walk to Granderson." - "Scherzer undeterred by hiccup in Nationals debut" - Bill Ladson,

• "The 30-year-old righty was so dominant, so in control in the early going that he had many among the 42,295 in attendance daring to dream about a 'no-no'". - "Despite loss, Max Scherzer ‘as advertised’ in Nats debut'" - Daniel Shiferaw, Nats Insider

Bryce Harper's HR + more

• "Yet here was Harper, stepping to the plate in the fourth inning Monday at Nationals Park to 'The Best is Yet to Come.'" - "Bryce Harper walks up to Frank Sinatra’s ‘The Best is Yet to Come,’ hits homer" - Scott Allen, The Washington Post

• "Oh sure, Bryce Harper may have mashed a home run in the Nats' Opening Day loss to the Mets, but it his post-home run hair flip was even more impressive..." - "About Bryce Harper's home run hair flip" - Nats Enquirer

• "Bryce Harper stared out at the mound in the bottom of the ninth inning Monday evening and saw a familiar face..." - "Bryce Harper is going to see a lot of Jerry Blevins" - Adam Kilgore, The Washington Post

• "Bryce Harper knows drama, you have to give him that. He doesn’t shy away from pivotal moments..." - "Bryce Harper has the most Bryce Harper of opening days, Max Scherzer shows his stuff" - Chelsea Janes, The Washington Post

Opening Day in D.C.:

• "Five innings later with Colon still on the mound, the Nationals had runners on first and second with two outs when Ramos struck out to end the threat." - "Nats' RISP struggles carry over in season opener" - Bill Ladson,

• "Nationals manager Matt Williams preached the need for situational hitting throughout the spring. The offense though was fairly anemic most of the Grapefruit League season." - "Nationals Pastime: Nationals offense still wasting stellar pitching" - Chris Johnson,

• "Their guys, right now, aren’t available, and it colored everything Monday." - "As Nationals celebrate 10 years, early-season lineup looks like a relic" - Barry Svrluga, The Washington Post

• "Opening Day isn’t Christmas, but for baseball fans, it might be even better. And at Nationals Park on Monday, it was a celebration in every way but one." - "Nationals' Opening Day loss to Mets tempers excitement over season" - Tom Schad, Washington Times

• "It was particularly disappointing, then, that the Nationals were anything but efficient when presented scoring opportunities during Monday’s season-opening, 3-1 loss to the Mets." - "Depleted lineup squanders rare opportunities in opener" - Mark Zuckerman, Nats Insider

• "It's been 46 years since the nation's capital last hosted the Midsummer Classic, which was held in 1969 at RFK Stadium." - "Nationals Pastime: 2018 All-Star Game is coming to Nationals Park" - Chris Johnson,

• "Funny thing about Opening Days. Sometimes odd things happen. Routine plays wind up not looking so routine. Nothing comes easy." - "Nats find out how other half lives in season opener" - RIchard Justice,

2018 All-Star Game in D.C.:

• "All eyes in Griffith Stadium were on him, including the eyes of 11-year-old Ted Lerner, who kept score in a program with President Franklin D. Roosevelt on the cover." - "For Nationals’ Ted Lerner, hosting the 2018 All-Star Game is the opportunity of a lifetime" - Thomas Boswell, The Washington Post

• "Principal owner Mark Lerner acknowledged that he was emotional after learning that DC was getting the Midsummer Classic." - "Nationals awarded 2018 All-Star Game" - Bill Ladson,


• "When Terry Collins announced two weeks ago baseball fossil Bartolo Colon would be the Mets Opening Day starter, and not Jacob deGrom or Harvey, there was no panic from the Mets." - "Bartolo Colon’s Opening Day perfectly summed up by Matt Harvey" - Kevin Kernan, New York Post

• "For five innings, a panoply of misfortune and overpowering force bundled together against the Mets." - "After 'tough talk' Mets beat Washington Nationals to make strong first impression" - Mike Vorkunov,

• "Shortstop Ian Desmond took the blame for the dropped popup that ultimately upended the Washington Nationals on Opening Day." - "Ian Desmond: 'Pretty embarrassing' drop gives New York Mets win" - Adam Rubin, Mets Blog - ESPN

• "The 41-year-old veteran who got the Opening Day nod over the team’s young guns, a decision that irritated plenty of Met fans, shut down the Nationals..." - "Colon, Mets take care of business in season opener vs. Nats" - Kristie Ackert, NY Daily News

• "The Washington Nationals are the World Series favorites, sporting the No.3 payroll. They gave Max Scherzer a $210 million contract in the offseason, making him the highest-paid free agent." - "MLB Payrolls 2015: Dodgers, Yankees, Nationals Are Baseball's Biggest Spenders" - Anthony Riccobono, International Business Times

• "'You guys are wrong with your expectations all the time anyway,' Zimmerman said. 'So why should we worry about it?'" - "Ryan Zimmerman makes shift to first base" - Paul Woody, Roanoke Times: Sports

• "In 2014, Washington fell in the 'quick and painless quadrant'—the Nats played relatively quick games, and won a lot." - "Baseball to Players: Hurry the Heck Up" - Sean Gregory, Emily Barone, TIME

• "'Everything looks good,' he said. 'The Nationals are still working on their lease, but it looks like they will get that resolved. Reports on the soil and the trash dump area have come back pretty good.'" - "Owner Jim Crane enjoys more spending options with this year’s TV deal" - David Barron, Ultimate Astros

• "'I've always loved Opening Day,' Manfred said at Nationals Park on a gorgeous day before Washington hosted the Mets." - "Rob Manfred enjoys his first Opening Day as commissioner" - Anthony Rieber, Newsday

NATSTOWN: The Anarchist of Summer?; Bunny vs Teddy; The Fairgrounds

• "As it stands now, it appears we could be in the last season of the venue that’s become synonymous with game day on Half Street." - "The Fairgrounds is a dying breed of the Nats fan experience" - Clinton Yates, The Washington Post

• "The 4th inning presidents race brought a similar feeling of deja vu for longtime Nationals fans." - "GIF: The Easter Bunny tackles Teddy Roosevelt on Opening Day" - Presidents Race Fan, Let Teddy Win!

• "Eidinger has never been to Nationals Park before. His greatest fame as a serial opponent of the establishment came in trying to ensure that that stadium wasn’t even constructed." - "The Anarchist Of Summer: A D.C. Rabble Rouser Returns To Baseball" - Dave McKenna, Deadspin

• "As any die-hard D.C. baseball fan can tell you, at one point success wasn’t a given for the nation’s capital on the baseball diamond, nor was even having a team!" - "Opening Day Wasn't Always a Given in D.C." - Jason Dick, Roll Call After Dark

NL EAST UPDATES: Braves over Marlins; Hamels' tough outing; Grilli replaces Kimbrel?

Phillies: "Cole Hamels, as expected, got the honor of starting on Opening Day, but it went poorly." - "Phillies Start 2015 Off with a Whimper" - Bill Baer, Crashburn Alley

Marlins: "Gordon found himself the victim of the elements a couple of times in the Marlins' 2-1 loss to the Braves." - "Slick surface slows down speedy Gordon" - Joe Frisaro,

Braves: "Fortunately for Hart, Grilli displayed great courage and poise as he recorded a pair of strikeouts during a perfect ninth inning..." - "Grilli, revamped Braves bullpen step up in first chance" - Mark Bowman,