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Lannan, Cordero, and leftovers

OK, it's late and I have a flight to catch in the morning, but I'll leave you with a few things.

* It seems that John Lannan might be about done for the year. His fastball was all over the place Thursday night, and he was lucky to survive five innings and get a win. I asked Lannan afterward about this being his second-to-last start, and he was surprised (though he understood). That obviously hadn't been conveyed to him. But after nearly 170 innings, when he hadn't pitched more than 145 in a year, it makes some sense. Agree or disagree?

* Zimmerman's defense. It is my plan to ask Tom Yost, the Nationals' video coordinator, to see if he can come up with a tape of Zimmerman's defensive play. I want to go through and find out how many above-average plays he made over the course of the year, plays that a regular third baseman doesn't make. Is it 40? Is it 60? My suspicion -- given that he made three tonight along, I guess is that he makes about 80 plays a year that others struggle to make. That's one every two games. I'll let you know what I come up with.

* Cordero: I went over most of his outing in the $.35 gamer, but I didn't mention his balk. After Pence's double with one out in the ninth, Cordero was facing Lance Berkman. He tried to throw a pitch, but his foot slipped off the rubber. "I had flashbacks to Anaheim," he told me after, which of course is a reference to his outing in 2005 against the Angels. I still consider that two-day period the Glory Days of the Nationals, because when Cordero fell over throwing a pitch in an inning in which he loaded the bases with no outs but got the save in a 1-0 victory, Washington was in first place, it was a day after Mike Scioscia and Frank Robinson had gone toe-to-toe, and Jose Guillen ended up calling Scioscia a "piece of garbage." Talk about some juice. Anyway, Cordero got the save even after what ended up being a balk -- and the home plate ump explained to Brian Schneider that the balk was called because he didn't make one motion to the plate, but stopped mid-"delivery" -- and then after Carlos Lee's second homer of the night. (Neither would have been a homer at RFK, but whatever.)

* Jason Bergmann: Check out previous post on Bergmann's Class AAA Columbus outing. Do you believe in him long-term?

* Shawn Hill on the bump tonight. Oh, the sinker. I can't wait to see the sinker.

* Austin Kearns: Have you seen the numbers he has put up lately? Check out the bottom of the notebook for that.

I've got to finish off the MLB Sunday page for Sheinin, who is on vacation this week, so I might not talk to you until I get to the ballpark on Friday. And I'll get another installment of our Position-by-Position series up there over the weekend. We talked about it at our Journal staff meeting in the morning, and I think we'll try to just move from catcher right around the infield after starting at catcher.

By Barry Svrluga  |  August 24, 2007; 2:05 AM ET
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Next: Position by position: First base (With lots of news tidbits now added)

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