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Wire Taps: Nationals’ new relievers debut, Nats hit homers as usual, beat Angels, 4-3

Ryan Madson and Sean Doolittle handled the eighth and ninth innings, respectively, and Bryce Harper homered in a 4 for 4 series opener against the Angels...

MLB: Washington Nationals at Los Angeles Angels Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

If Bryce Harper didn’t get thrown out at second in the third, his eighth inning triple would have given him the cycle in the series opener against the LA Angels.

A 4 for 4 night is pretty good though, cycle or not. Harper homered in his first at bat, then tripled, and scored the go-ahead run in the eighth.

Adam Lind’s home run in the ninth ended up being the winning run in the Nats’ 4-3 victory.

Oh, and the Nationals’ new relievers debuted. Ryan Madson threw a 1-2-3 eighth, and Sean Doolittle (who gave up a run) earned the save in the ninth.

Oh, and Edwin Jackson gave up two runs on three hits in seven innings. E-Jax is back... for now.

Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news below...


Ryan Madson and Sean Doolittle report for Nationals duty
"A couple days before Ryan Madson and Sean Doolitte got word they had been traded to the Nationals, a rumor spread across the Oakland Athletics clubhouse."

Jayson Werth likely out a few more weeks
"Nationals left fielder Jayson Werth provided some clarity on the left foot injury that has sidelined him since he a pitch off the foot June [3]."

Nationals’ Jayson Werth has a fracture in his foot — and has known for some time
"Werth has a fracture in the first metatarsal of his left foot, something he knew from the beginning, but that neither he nor the Nationals ever shared."

Fracture and bone bruise keeping Werth out (Nats win 4-3)
“'It’s doing better,' Werth said this afternoon. 'It’s just frustrating because this injury, the bone that’s injured is crucial for running.'"

No designated closer (yet) between Madson and Doolittle
"What roles exactly will those be? Well, the answer for now is a simple-yet-unsatisfying one: Baker doesn’t know."

"That time Jose Guillen called Mike Scioscia a piece of garbage after the Nats beat the Angels
"Robinson, tipped off by Guillen, came out of the dugout and asked the umpires to check Donnelly’s glove — before he made a pitch. The umps did, and found globs of pine tar."

Nats Still Want Bullpen Help? 5 Names to Watch
"The Nats were rumored to be hot for [Justin]Wilson before the deal to land Sean Doolittle and Ryan Madson was completed."

MLB trade deadline sellers worth keeping an eye on
"Orioles closer Zach Britton will be a target across the league, and the Nationals would be justified in their interest in him. Britton has a 1.93 ERA this season in 13 appearances, while dealing with injuries throughout the year."


Bryce Harper and Mike Trout amazingly trade home runs in first inning of Nationals-Angels
"It’s always fun when two of a sport’s biggest stars put on a show to start a game."

MLB - Fantasy Baseball Daily Notes for July 19
"With a 13-for-26 stretch in his last nine games that includes eight walks, two stolen bases and nine runs, Difo is trying to pull away from Stephen Drew..."

A Buyer’s (And Seller’s) Guide To The MLB Trade Deadline
"A few years ago, my colleague Nate Silver and I developed a statistical framework for trade-deadline strategy: the Doyle Number (named for a certain pitcher the Detroit Tigers mortgaged their future to acquire at the 1987 deadline)."

Dusty Baker - not that one - returns to the ocean in Juno Beach
"A teenage loggerhead turtle later named after the Washington Nationals manager was starving when he was plucked from the sea a mile off St. Lucie’s coast in February."