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Wire Taps: Updates on Kurt Suzuki, Roenis Elías; Jonny Venters’ long rehab journey; Nationals can’t solve Twins’ pitching

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Catch up on the last 24 hours in Nationals news before the start of the second of three with the Twins (weather permitting)...

Washington Nationals v Minnesota Twins Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Presented without comment:

Nationals 2019 record with Will writing Wire Taps on weekdays: 76-58

Nationals 2019 record without Will writing Wire Taps on weekdays: 3-6

As an aside, if you had any interest in where the normal Wire Tapper has been, I took some time off to move. This season is going to be my last doing Wire Taps (I’ll last as long as the Nationals do, no matter if that’s September 29th or the day of a World Series parade), so if you have interest in taking over/if you know someone who you think would be good for the job, please reach out to Patrick or me to inquire.

Here’s what’s trending in the Twin Cities:

Nationals' injury updates: Suzuki, Elias (
"Washington manager Dave Martinez called [Kurt] Suzuki day to day, and the hope is anti-inflammatory medication will help Suzuki return soon."

Nationals-Twins: Bats fall flat as Nats lose, 5-0 (WaPo)
"The Nationals arrived in Minnesota in full control of their postseason destiny."

Nationals’ playoff picture: Closing schedule does Washington no favors (WaPo)
The Nats have had their worst stretch at the worst possible time, essentially locking themselves out of the NL East title and forcing themselves to knock off some of baseball's best teams — which looked like a struggle all year and looked like it would pose a problem yet again last night. Also: if the Cardinals crater and the Cubs skyrocket, the Nats-Cards series towards the end of the month could well have league-wide ramifications.

Gomes prepped for heavy workload til Suzuki returns (MASN)
Kurt Suzuki will be okay, but he's got a few more days before he's able to throw again, meaning that Yan Gomes and potentially either Raudy Read or Tres Barrera will get some time. (Also, Roenis Elías will get re-evaluated in Washington.)

Sánchez loses pitchers' duel, Nats lose again on road (MASN)
"It doesn’t matter how well the Nationals’ starters pitch right now. If their teammates can’t score any runs off opposing starters, it’ll all be wasted."

Nationals reliever Jonny Venters can’t stay on the mound, but he can’t walk away, either (WaPo)
Venters has had four elbow procedures; he's quit to flip houses; he's been resilient year after year, unable to find his way back on to a major league mound consistently and yet still pushing ahead — he knows it's the best shot he's got, financially and in terms of what he wants to do.

Nationals-Twins: Bats fall flat as Nats lose, 5-0 (WaPo)
Aníbal Sánchez made one mistake all night, and while the bullpen faltered, the one mistake was all that really mattered: unable to do damage off a starting pitcher yet again, the result was all but predetermined.

Anibal takes tough-luck loss as Nats blanked - (
"The Interleague battle between two teams in playoff position was a show of pitching as Minnesota All-Star José Berríos matched [Aníbal] Sánchez."