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Wire Taps: Juan Soto makes everyone forget Nationals’ bad baserunning; Bryce Harper in HR Derby?

Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news before the start of tonight’s game with the Blue Jays.

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MLB: Washington Nationals at New York Yankees Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Juan Soto hitting his home runs on Wednesday, saved the Washington Nationals, who were playing a game that wasn’t very pretty, getting thrown out and picked off, giving up outs and baserunners in a way that seemed destined to cost them the game. It didn’t, but that doesn’t mean it was good baseball.

“Let me be honest with you, it was ugly,” Davey Martinez said. “It was. I’m not looking to lie.”

“We gave them five outs,” Martinez explained, “... and typically when you do that you don’t expect to win the ballgame, but you know what, I’m proud of the boys, they battled back, bullpen came in and was outstanding, [Erick] Fedde kept us in the game, and we ended up winning.”


Nats' Juan Soto emerges as unexpected phenom - (
"Juan Soto wasn't even 'The Guy' in his own camp this spring. That was Victor Robles."

National League East bounceback players - (
"When he returns from the DL, he might share time at first base with Matt Adams, but if he even comes remotely close to his career slash line of .279/.343/.475, it will be a boost to the Nationals' lineup."

Unemployed in August, Justin Miller has been MLB’s best reliever with the Nationals - (WaPost)
"Turns out, nobody wants to hit against Miller. Not at the Class AAA level, not at the major league level, not at any level."

Nationals owner Ted Lerner, 92, to cede control of club to his son, Mark - (WaPost)
“'We will never sell the Nationals,' Mark Lerner said. 'That’s what we’ve worked to get all those years. We think we do a pretty good job of it.'"

Michael Morse returns in new role with Nationals as fill-in MASN announcer - (Washington Times)
"Michael Morse was at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday night, but he was not on hand as a possible pinch-hitter for the Nationals or a scout for a major league team."

An ownership change in name, but not in intentions - (MASN)
"From the day he purchased the Nationals from Major League Baseball in 2006, Ted Lerner made it clear this would - and always would - be a family-run operation."

With Miller's surprising emergence, Nats bullpen a strength again - (MASN)
"For the record, the Nationals signed Miller to a minor league contract in January, hoping the 4.99 ERA he posted in 82 games with the Tigers and Rockies from 2014-16 wasn’t a true reflection of his ability."

Sean Doolittle has the best ideas for a Nationals Park bullpen cart - (WaPost)
"Among Doolittle’s suggestions: Katy Perry’s giant lion from the Super Bowl XLIX halftime show, a Surrey bike, Marty McFly’s hoverboard and an Atlasphere of 'American Gladiators' fame."


Is Nats star Bryce Harper a 'losing player?' That's not what the standings say - (Yahoo!Sports)
"Finding a baseball fan who thinks Harper is overrated is like finding a political meme on Facebook."

Juan Soto Is 19 And Crushing It - (Deadspin)
"Juan Soto is a boy with a man’s bat."

Who is Juan Soto? Fast facts about the Nationals' teen phenom - (Sporting News)
"So, just who is Juan Soto? Here are five fast facts about the teenager who's crushing big-league pitching."

Real or not? Juan Soto may be best of baseball's great rookie class - (ESPN)
"Yes, it's a very small sample size, but this much is already clear: This kid is going to be a big star."

Juan Soto: Why the Nationals teen-phenom is here to stay - (USA TODAY)
"Juan Soto is not yet one month into his major league career, which would seem a poor time to put any of the Washington Nationals left fielder’s accomplishments into context."

Nationals’ Ryan Zimmerman talks Capitals, D.C. as a sports town & more - (SBNation)
"I talked to Zimmerman about all of that plus how it feels to watch the Capitals bring a championship to D.C., how the Washington fanbase has grown, and the Nationals’ chances of winning a championship of their own."

Yankees manager Aaron Boone talks about Juan Soto's big night - (
"Yankees manager Aaron Boone speaks after Wednesday night's 5-4 loss to the Washington Nationals."


Ronald Acuna Jr. progressing well in rehab - (
"'We're going to be careful with him,' Braves manager Brian Snitker said. 'He's got some boxes to check before he goes out. He's going to have to run the bases more than once.'"

Kyle Barraclough quietly makes mark as Marlins closer with scoreless inning streak - (Sun Sentinel)
"The first thing Marlins closer Kyle Barraclough said to reporters after recording saves in back-to-back games this week was, 'Don’t ask about me.'"

NY Mets trade rumors: Jacob deGrom a hot topic as team struggles - (
"With each loss that pushes the Mets toward becoming sellers this summer, Jacob deGrom will continue to be discussed a potential market changer."

Rhys Hoskins has 3-hit, 3-RBI day in win - (
"The game was hanging in the balance when Rhys Hoskins stepped in the batter's box during the bottom of the seventh inning Thursday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park."