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Matinee lineups

Sorry these are late. Those noon local time starts sneak up on you.

Washington:
Guzman -- 6
Milledge -- 8
Zimmerman -- 5
Johnson -- 3
Kearns -- 9
Belliard -- 4
Lopez -- 7
Flores -- 2
Chico -- 1

St. Louis:
Barton -- 7
Ankiel -- 8
Pujols -- 3
Glaus -- 5
Ludwick -- 9
Molina -- 2
Kennedy -- 4
Wainwright -- 1
Itzturis -- 6

No news yet on Dmitri Young's checkup. Will get it to you when it comes.

By Barry Svrluga  |  April 5, 2008; 1:18 PM ET
 
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Next: Sunday lineups -- and Opening Night Poster

Comments

Chico with 2k's through the 1st inning. well done!

Posted by: natsinthevalley | April 5, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Chico looks good early, just get ahead in the count and you can do damage.

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

No worries Nats fans. Soon enough the Orioles (and their delicious crabcakes) will be soaring past the Nat's in the standings and will show who the true baseball power of the Mid-Atlantic is.

Oh yeah baby!!!!!

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 1:37 PM | Report abuse

We have no starting pitching. None.

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Thats what happens when chico starts behind in the count.

Posted by: natsinthevalley | April 5, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Boy, Nats already behind.

Oh well, it's something Nats fans will get used to by seasons end.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Hey O's Exec if you couldn't have a single season with a better record than us when your whole team was juiced up why would you think you could be better now?

Posted by: ExtremeNats.com | April 5, 2008 1:59 PM | Report abuse

ouch... 7.56 era...

Posted by: natsinthevalley | April 5, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

@O's Exec

Thanx for your interest in the Nationals. You're helping our MASN (Mean Angelos Screws Nats) ratings. And judging by all of the empty seats last night at OPCY, there seem to be two teams playing in "green" stadiums in the metropolitan area.

Posted by: leetee1955 | April 5, 2008 2:07 PM | Report abuse

No need to get jealous Nats fans. Just because you know that the Orioles are a far superior team to your Nats there's not need to get upset. That's the best you can do too, is joke attendance?

I'd rather have a World Series-caliber team playing in an empty stadium (Orioles) than a completely stinky team playing in a brand new packed stadium (Nats) even though by July/August the new stadium will be empty anyway.

Boo-Yah.

Cards - 4
Nats - 1

HAHAHAHHAHAAHHAAHHAHAHAHA

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

@O's Exec,

You have the best of both worlds - a stinky team playing in an empty stadium.

Posted by: leetee1955 | April 5, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

That 3-1 call to Flores was a complete joke, that was ball 4... But, man did Kennedy rob us, great play at 2nd.

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

That 3-1 call to Flores was a complete joke, that was ball 4... But, man did Kennedy rob us, great play at 2nd.

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 02:21 PM
___________________________________________

All GOOD teams (like the Orioles) don't put themselves in positions to let the refs determine the outcome of the game. Only bad teams (like the Nats) do that.

Blame the ump, what a sad excuse.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Hey O's Exec whens the last time the Balcomore Orioles have had a better record than the Nationals?

Posted by: ExtremeNats.com | April 5, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm. I think I remember a kid in right field at Yankee Stadium and a bad call that the O's still blame for losing an entire playoff series. But yeah, O's fans never blame the umps.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Chico is really on the ropes. Good thing he picked off izturis, or we'd be even farther behind.

Posted by: leetee1955 | April 5, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

angelO's fans dont blame the umps? richie garcia got death threats from angelO's fans on the jeffrey maier catch. of course, the authorities didn't take them seriously since the messages were so poorly spelled!

Posted by: natsscribe | April 5, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Chico is really on the ropes. Good thing he picked off izturis, or we'd be even farther behind.

Posted by: leetee1955 | April 5, 2008 02:29 PM
__________________________________________

Actually the entire Nationals team is on the ropes. Their season is starting to go straight down the tubes.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 2:32 PM | Report abuse

@Os Exec,

is the reason you're pestering us is because the russell street bridge is under construction and you can't go home?

Posted by: natsscribe | April 5, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Why not abandon this pathetic display of athletic insignificance and come on up to OPACY and see the future of baseball, today? Why not try a crabcake while you're at it? Why spend your day watching a bad team? Why keep watching the Nads plays a class organization like the Cards? Be like me, and... Oh, I'm watching the game as well.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 2:37 PM | Report abuse

We KNOW why he's pestering us: he's a troll.
The question remains, why are you feeding it?

Posted by: CE | April 5, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

@O's Boy,

We may spend our days looking at a bad team. You will spend your nights viewing an even worse squad.

Posted by: leetee1955 | April 5, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

O's winning percentage - .667

Nats winning percentage - .600 (soon to be .500)


Oh yeah, Ain't the crabcakes sweet.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

O's Exec you don't judge how good a team is by how many players they have on the Mitchell Report

Posted by: ExtremeNats.com | April 5, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Even if the Nats win only 1 game this weekend, they'll come home with a .500 record, so not to worry...the season is young and we have a full season of wonderful Nationals baseball to look forward to. Now thats a beautiful thing to ponder. Besides...orange is a terrible color.

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Where's the live scoreboard today?? I've been looking all over the washingtonpost.com website, and I can't find it anywhere! WOuldn't it make sense to link to this off the main WashPost Nationals page? Or with ANY of the news stories about the Nationals? Or off the Nationals Journal blog? Or, hey, how about somewhere on the main page? Anywhere???

Posted by: SBrent | April 5, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Post of the day goes to ExtremeNats. Good one!

Posted by: Annie Savoy | April 5, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Anyone care to explain why the Washington Post covers the Baltimore Orioles yet the Baltimore Sun couldn't care less and doesn't cover the Washington Nationals?


HAHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHAHAHA

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

We need to string together some hits here, problem is the bottom of our lineup is pretty weak...

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 3:02 PM | Report abuse

We need to string together some hits here, problem is the bottom of our lineup is pretty weak...

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 03:02 PM

*****************************************

Actually the Nationals ENTIRE lineup is pretty weak.

The O's have one of the strongest lineups in all of MLB.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 3:05 PM | Report abuse

O's Exec can you explain how a team with 3X the payroll of the Nationals haven't had one season with a better record then them?

Posted by: ExtremeNats.com | April 5, 2008 3:08 PM | Report abuse

O's Exec...when is your circus leaving town?

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

I expect Colome in the bottom of the 7th here... this is going to be big, we've got to get out of this inning with no damage, and then we have Milledge, Zimmerman, Johnson due up to start the 8th, one last stand.

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

RALLY TIME

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

Just look at all those people posting now pretending to be me. I must be popular. At least for once in my life. Those imposters on this board are doing a great job of repeating the same three things I say in every post. P. Angelos hasn't given me permission to say anything. Yet. But just wait until July, when the O's at beautiful OPACY are only nineteen games out of the wild card race. Those crabcakes will be delicious as you dine in the humid, hazy baltimore smog.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Alright lets steal this win!

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

mlb.com tv package has me watching the Cardinals feed. The mad hungarian (Al Hrabosky) is the color man on the telecast.

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Go Nick!!!!!!!

Posted by: DJ 26 | April 5, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

I'm flabbergasted. I'm delighted. I'm thrilled.

I'm sitting in my seat in Nationals Park and I have decently fast free wi-fi. I had heard the rumor, now I know it is true. I'm floored.

You realize that this means I can leave work early, metro down to the park, finish my work while I watch batting practice or whatever (just to not be in the recirculated air of my cubicle), wrap it up and put my computer away when the lineups are announced.

Wow. I'm a HUGE nerd. (on at least two counts). I guess all I can do is own it. ;)

When I start getting mail to section 315, it is all over.

Posted by: i hate walks | April 5, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Colome : < ((

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Colome got hosed on consecutive batters, both of those ball 4's should have been called strikes.

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

I hate walks

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

uhoh... HTTP works, but no SSH through the GuestOutdoor wi-fi. I'll have to find a way around that. :/

Posted by: i hate walks | April 5, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

To repeat SC Nats fan: I hate walks

Posted by: Nats fan in NJ | April 5, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Why didn't we sign Livan? Why didn't we cut Lopez? I know the Lerners are cheap, but they could have had Hernandez for the price of FLop.

Posted by: PowerBoater69 | April 5, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Ok, other than the HR in Cincy last year, has FLop had any big situation hits for us??

Posted by: Nats fan in NJ | April 5, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Ok, is Flores defense so much of a shortfall that he shouldn't be starting up here??

Posted by: Nats fan in NJ | April 5, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

thank you Jesus

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

JESUS BIG DADDY FLORES


oh man does that passed ball hurt!

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Man, I can't get over that passed ball now, it's going to haunt me.

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

It all started with Colome and his 2 out walks...just a killer.

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Colome shouldn't have walked them, youre right, but I will still contend that those ball 4's should have been called strikes. Regardless, there is no excuse for walking those batters, though.

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully Guzzie can get on base here and Milledge will put one in the bleachers.

Posted by: Jason | April 5, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Oh well...good thing about it is...always tomorrow, just try to avoid the sweep.

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 4:08 PM | Report abuse

At least the Phillies lost also.

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

New rule for this blog:
All posters must ignore O's Exec.
Like all **** it will just go away.

Posted by: Tom | April 5, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

I know that a number of you are down on Harris and, in a fairness, I haven't seen him at the plate except duirng the opener. But I will note the following at this point:

Nats record w/o FLopes in the lineup: 3-0
Nats record w FLopes in the lineup: 0-3

I know that FLopes has not been terrible and he even made a nice play today. Maybe I'm just superstitious but I'd sure like to see Harris in LF tomorrow.

Posted by: lowcountry | April 5, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

I'll say this about Harris...most of the time I've seen him, he hit the ball hard, just at somebody. He had a 6 hit game last year against the Cardinals for the Braves...go figure?

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | April 5, 2008 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, but I'm not ready to give Colome the benefit of the doubt. He's a major league pitcher who can't rely on the umpire for things to go his way.

Posted by: Juan-John | April 5, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

How bout those Nats, eh boys and girls?

Nice 3-game LOSING streak the team is on huh?

Now, those O's, they're red hot on a 2-game (soon to be 3) tear.

Oh yeah. Crabcakes, Boogs BBQ, and sweet delicious OPACY booze 4 life baby.

Posted by: O's Exec | April 5, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile Livo is 2-0 for the Twins, going 7 innings each time.

Hey O's Exec, after you brush your tooth tonight, here's something to ponder. The lady Terps averaged 11,400/home game . . . that would be about 1,000 more than showed to see Angelo's Angels the other night. Nice try.

Posted by: Johnny Baconbitz | April 5, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Okay, folks. Let's all chill out. The truth of the matter is that this is a team that, if things break right, folks get/stay healthy, and have some luck, can play .500 this year. And now they're at .500. As we learned in 2005, over the course of a long season, 1-run games will usually break something like 50/50. So losing a few close ones, after winning a few, shouldn't change anyone's view of the team. Who knows what the last few days would have looked like w/ WMP or Dukes in the lineup. No reason to lose faith. Still heading in the right direction. And after all, with a few more good bounces, a .500 team is within a stone's throw of wild-card contention in September...

Posted by: BELIEVER | April 5, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

Redding and Bergmann should be at the front of our rotation. I have so much more faith in those two. And when Lannan comes up he should be 3rd.

Posted by: NatsNut | April 5, 2008 6:42 PM | Report abuse

Hey Johnny,

Is Baconbitz your real name?

Posted by: Need to Know | April 5, 2008 7:03 PM | Report abuse

go caps.

Posted by: natsinthevalley | April 5, 2008 7:06 PM | Report abuse

let me ask this question again: which is more pitiful, a troll or someone who continues to feed a troll?

Posted by: 231 | April 5, 2008 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Hate to see us lose, but we still have not lost by more than one run this season so that is something to be happy about. I feel like we are one or two players away from being a very good team!

Posted by: ExtremeNats.com | April 5, 2008 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Another one-run game, which will even out to 50/50 over the course of the season, so we will be paid back with a sweet, one run victory like the opening days here and in Philly. Manny came strong to defend Jesus Flores at the presser. "What passed ball? That ball wasn't in the dirt!" He's fed up with pitchers throwing two feet wide of the plate with a man on 3rd. And, "Colome doesn't have Greg Maddux accuracy. He throws the ball 100 mph - that's why he's in there." My favorite memory of the game was Ray King blocking the plate after he threw the wild pitch - he almost tagged the Cardinal runner out and the guy bounced off of Ray like he'd run into a wall. Comrade NatsFans, we have a 3rd catcher!

Posted by: flynnie | April 5, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

The Best Blog Name Ever, whom I revere, is a Red Sox Fan who calls himself "The Piehole of David Wells."

Posted by: flynnie | April 5, 2008 8:48 PM | Report abuse

The Best Blog Name Ever, whom I revere, is a Red Sox Fan who calls himself "The Piehole of David Wells."

Posted by: flynnie | April 5, 2008 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Ok, we're on for tomorrow. Let's end this slide.

Posted by: 6th and D | April 5, 2008 9:03 PM | Report abuse

Again, sorry for the double post. Computer hijacked by daughter, but "The Piehole of David Wells" deserves a double homage. The team is hitting so much better now. A healthy Guzman, Nick (also sparkly in the field), Zimm, Kearns, Felipe - it seems, as Barry says, that there's more pop in the lineup. Jesus Flores crushed that home run. I love that kid. These guys are easy to root for. I'm looking forward to some great baseball tomorrow! If Adam Kennedy hadn't been temporarily possessed by the ghost of Honus Wagner, we'd have won.

Posted by: flynnie | April 5, 2008 9:13 PM | Report abuse

caps are in the playoffs!!

Posted by: natsinthevalley | April 5, 2008 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Top shelf peanut butter! Go Caps!

Posted by: flynnie | April 5, 2008 9:36 PM | Report abuse

I'm excited to see Lannan tomorrow. I think he's performance will have a significant impact on both Odalis or Chico.

But, for tonight, I'm most excited about:

LETS GO CAPS!!!

Posted by: Nats (and Caps) fan in NJ | April 5, 2008 10:12 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, Flores had a passed balled. Might have cost the game. LoDuca had a passed ball the other night and we won. The difference-Flores has contributed big time offensively. But somehow Flores is getting flack, more than did LoDuca.
These blogs, lately, seem to be intent upon talking about the Redskins, O's executive, politics,(Canadian flag, Bush, etc.)and sundry things that only seem remotely related to baseball.
And, while I'm at it, flynnie, I've still not figured out whether your last post to me was sarcastic or you were commiserating. You appeared to be questioning my intelligence, but, when I think about it, I suppose that's reasonable.

Posted by: Jeeves | April 5, 2008 10:22 PM | Report abuse

OK, Caps and Wizards both in the playoffs for the first time in 20 years. The Mystics were in the playoffs. The football team, even, IIRC, also got in a back door playoff before getting bounced. SO we have every civic omen going our way.
PLAYOFFS, baby. Wildcard or bust. 83 more wins ought to do it.

Now get hacking! We trust Manny.

Posted by: MIB | April 5, 2008 10:27 PM | Report abuse

I'm just wondering-can King make it through one game without giving up a run, and is Colome the flavor of the week?

Posted by: Jeeves | April 5, 2008 10:40 PM | Report abuse

As long as we were discussing the marketing, in fairness I have to add that keeping the cameras on is a really nice touch, subtle and long-term, but good.

Posted by: CE | April 5, 2008 11:22 PM | Report abuse

Anyone know anything about the Post and maybe a poster tomorrow from OD?

Posted by: svxcountry | April 5, 2008 11:47 PM | Report abuse

Jeeves, neither I nor Bertie Wooster do sarcasm. At least not then. I like your posts and I like Jeeves, who, according to Bertie, "virtually lives on fish," thus the superb brainpower of "the old headpiece." Chase the darkness of defeat away and revel in a sincere compliment. I was in an apartment in Prague with the flu which kept me up at night, and was reading Jeeves, which would set me coughing, which would reverberate off the high ceilings, waking others up. I remember one of my daughters saying, "Are you reading Jeeves? Don't you dare read Jeeves!" It's not a good idea to internally spoil compliments - it's a habit of thought that increases sadness, and the world is sad enough. "Our meddling intellect, We murder to dissect. Wordsworth That's why we're here talking baseball and the successes of our underdog team, a subject drenched in sunshine. Tally ho, Jeeves!

Posted by: flynnie | April 6, 2008 4:08 AM | Report abuse

To brighten the day: The Nats nearly won on a clutch home run from their young catcher. (I agree with Manny - Ray King's pitch was two foot wide, passing Flores in the air, and was not a passed ball.) And at least we didn't lose like the Phillies (as pointed out by S.C. Nats Fan) on a wild throw to first by our MVP shortstop, Jimmy Rollins.

Posted by: flynnie | April 6, 2008 4:26 AM | Report abuse

S.C. Natsfan, did you like the St. Louis broadcast? The Mad Hungarian and whoever does the play-by-play were dreadful when I heard them last year, and made me all the more grateful for Bob Carpenter, who calls such a light, sweet game. The Nats came out way ahead in that trade.

Posted by: flynnie | April 6, 2008 4:31 AM | Report abuse

The Tigers would trade places with the Nats right now. The Tigers are 0-5, and only 2 teams have made the playoffs startin 0-5: the 72 Mets and Mr. Bowden's 95 Reds. Jim Leyland did not see this coming with the addition of Dontrelle and Orlando. So Let's Go Nats! Give us a win today, and happy up the Natosphere and Monday morning, both of which could use some brightening.

Posted by: flynnie | April 6, 2008 4:47 AM | Report abuse

Thanks flynnie, for the explanation and the kind words. Have to admit(guess that's obvious) I didn't know the reference. I was thinking more on the line of Jeeves, the valet, servant to the gods of baseball. Sounds kind of dumb when I put it like that. Liked your reference much better.

Posted by: Jeeves | April 6, 2008 6:30 AM | Report abuse

Before the game, begin reading the stories of your exploits by P.G. Wodehouse, Jeeves. The ones with Bertie's nephew, "a young man steeped in sin," are particularly riotous. Even George Orwell, a lovable but gloomy gus, loved and defended Wodehouse. Nothing better than settling in after a Nats win with "What Ho, Jeeves!" or "Jeeves and the Wrath of God."

Posted by: flynnie | April 6, 2008 6:57 AM | Report abuse

Opening Day Poster:

Just got one from Safeway. They're large, neatly rolled and in their own container at the newspaper display. The color is a little off, but for $1.50, pretty nice.
____________________

Anyone know anything about the Post and maybe a poster tomorrow from OD?

Posted by: svxcountry | April 5, 2008 11:47 PM

Posted by: NatsNut | April 6, 2008 7:57 AM | Report abuse

Thanks, I'm about to go pick up one right now...I assume there are plenty of them out right now.

Posted by: svxcountry | April 6, 2008 9:32 AM | Report abuse

St. Clair needs to set up a 5 gallon bucket on a stool about knee high at home plate. Next, grab Colome and see if he can hit the darn thing twice in a row. If he can't he needs to vacate the major leagues. Obviously, I am getting freaking tired of watching him walk batters.

Redding and Bergmann should be at the front of our rotation. I have so much more faith in those two. And when Lannan comes up he should be 3rd.

Posted by: NatsNut | April 5, 2008 06:42 PM

I totally agree, Natsnut. Perez shocked me by his performance on opening night but I fear that may be an anomaly. Friday's game may be more like his pitching level from last year. Bergman actually pitched much better than the line score would indicate since the runs were the result of a strange barrage of ground ball singles. Redding was near perfect. I am hoping that Lannan can hold the Cards to 3 runs for 7 innings. Now if we can just get one of our RBI men to smack a hit with two runners on base.

Posted by: Dale | April 6, 2008 9:42 AM | Report abuse

I personally can't believe how many times we've had the bases loaded in the last three games and didn't come through. Is Lenny Harris still playing cards with the players?

Posted by: NatsNut | April 6, 2008 10:10 AM | Report abuse

In case any of you don't have the print edition of today's paper, the Post sports editors would like you all to know that for the second day in a row, today's game to watch is the Mets-Braves game, and not the Nats-Cards game. Shows what they think of the Nats.

And how to watch a game being played in Atlanta anyway? I guess they think we all subscribe to mlb.tv or the Extra Innings package.

Posted by: Covergae is Lacking | April 6, 2008 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Re. today's paper - nice to see the MLB Sunday feature return!

On another note, I just looked at the stadium centerfield cam to see whether I could spot myself in the plaza yesterday. Couldn't do so, but there *are* some nice shots of some of the Rushmores in the plaza area at various points yesterday afternoon.

Posted by: natsfan1a | April 6, 2008 10:49 AM | Report abuse

CIL-

The "game to watch" is on the generic NL and/or AL standings page. There is no problem being interested in baseball in general as well as the Nats. There is information on the Nats' matchup on the Nationals page.

I like getting the low-down on a prime matchup that day. I am sure it is not meant to slight the local team. Maybe in a few years our pitching staff will be so good that it wouldn't make sense to exclude the Nats game as the "game to watch".

As it turns out, you are right- the Braves are not on TBS today, apparently. Keep the passion, pal- the team needs devoted fans.

Posted by: Positively Half St. | April 6, 2008 11:07 AM | Report abuse

"Thanks, I'm about to go pick up one right now...I assume there are plenty of them out right now."

Don't count on that. I just got back from an excursion to my local Safeway, just outside the Beltway in Fairfax, a huge store with a bank and a Starbucks inside the store. I walk in, and right inside the store is a stack of a hundred or so Sunday papers, with a big sign saying "Buy a paper, pick up a poster." There's even a lady at a table right in front of this display who tries to hawk me a paper as soon as I approach. She practically shoves it up my nose. I say "Where's the poster?" "Oh, we don't have those. Maybe next week."

Ten in the morning on a Sunday, and they either never got any or they're out already? I tell you, before the Post ever writes another word critical of the Nationals for missing a deadline or running out of something or not delivering on their customer service promises, they need to do a review of their own operation first. It ain't pretty.

I drove to a nearby 7-11 and got a poster. There were about eight left in the box by the stack of papers, which was maybe 20 high.

Posted by: Section 419+1 | April 6, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

To anyone with the inclination, memory, and data ...

What would the likely outcome of these last three losses have been if our bullpen had walked just half as many opposing batters?

And if you've got the data, what happens if the four-pitch unintentional walks become groundouts or flyouts?


Sure, it is a long season, and I'm not nearly as despondent after a 3-loss streak as I was elated after a 3-win streak, but I think I see a pattern here that is costing us games.


It isn't a rash of errors. It isn't a failure to score. It isn't really even the passed balls or failure to cover the bag or the failure to swing at a called strike three (although those things are, for sure, hurting our chances too). But this bullpen's affinity for walking batters is going to become cause for concern real, real soon.

Posted by: i hate walks | April 6, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

+.5, there is much less information about the Nats' matchup on the Nats page than there is about the Mets-Braves matchup. If they gave us the same information--and gave us that info for every Nats game--then I wouldn't have a problem with the paper spotlighting an additional NL game (though I still think it would be wrong to refer to an out-of-town game as the "game to watch"). But they give us less about the Nats, which I think is a wrong and insulting approach.

I am highly interested in baseball in general, and agree with you that there's nothing wrong with that. There are tons of resources that people have at their disposal to follow baseball in general. But the Post should be focused on the home team first.

Posted by: Coverage is Lacking | April 6, 2008 11:22 AM | Report abuse

419+1- I take the paper and didn't see a poster in the ones delivered to my driveway, but my son-in-law is a Phillies fan, and the darkest suspicions arise. When he gave my grandson (his son) a Phillies hat, I pleaded with him that there are some family traditions best not passed on to the next generation. But, as Philip Larkin, the working class English poet said: "They f you up,Your mom and dad; they may not mean to, but they do. They fill you with the faults they had, And add some extra, just for you." From "This Be the Verse."

Posted by: flynnie | April 6, 2008 11:57 AM | Report abuse

I'm almost positive that those "Today's Game to Watch" things aren't even produced by the Post itself. They're synicated things that probably come from the same provider as the standings, league leaders, etc. The Post sets up its standard graphic layout to display the information, and then the syndicated data is fed every day and populates the display. The biggest chunk of work in the whole operation for the Post is cutting the check to pay the syndicator. (BTW, this is also the reason the Post would give if pressed on why they don't show Washington and, God forbid, Baltimore in bold in the daily standings. They're not producing that data.)

This, along with the increasing use of reader-generated content, reprints of blog postings and the like, is just another example of how the print Post is just phoning it in on the way to its inevitable demise. I suppose we should be grateful there's enough Nats-specific as there is in the paper.

At least the Washington Star fought all the way until its last breath before it went down like the Titanic in 1981. I'm afraid we won't be able to say the same thing about the Post. It will go not with a bang, but a whimper.

Posted by: Section 419+1 | April 6, 2008 12:00 PM | Report abuse

flynnie, the poster is a promotion that the Post is running if you buy the Sunday paper at certain outlets (Safeway, Giant, 7-11, maybe others). It's not included with home-delivered papers. My point is that if the Post is going to run a promotion for itself that promises a poster if you buy the Sunday paper at those places, and if they run ads in their own paper all week announcing the promotion and have big signs in the stores where the posters are supposed to be available, and then don't have any posters available at 10:00 am on the day of the promotion, that's downright piss poor operation on their part. They've crucified the Nationals over less.

Posted by: Section 419+1 | April 6, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

419+1- Thank you. You have gotten my son-in-law off the hook. I'm off to the 7-11. With all the buyouts at the Post, I'm glad that there's still enough folk in circulation to get the paper to my driveway. And all of you NJ readers, here's a plea to buy a subscription to support the paper that gives us so much pleasure.

Posted by: flynnie | April 6, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

the posters were actually out yesterday with the early sunday editions. i picked mine up them. i'm guessing a lot of people may have done that, leading to a lot less available today.

Posted by: 231 | April 6, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

I hate walks, I even hate 3-1, and, if memory serves, the end of the dismal 9-25 streak of last April and May was the result of the pitchers finally throwing strikes. Maybe they're used to getting minor league batters out with that off-the-plate garbage, or maybe they remember Mike Bacsik, who threw strikes, or, more recently, the criticism heaped on various pitchers by Don Sutton - did you hear him blaming yesterday's loss on "fat pitches" and "throwing down Broadway" by Chico and others? But Sutton is Stan Kasten's friend and favorite commentator-whom Stan calls "matchless in his understanding and ability to convey the mano-a-mano confrontation between pitcher and batter that is baseball." Or maybe, as Diamond Mind Projections stated after 6000 computer simulations, they're just not that good, and are headed to a 72-90 record.

Posted by: flynnie | April 6, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

But then I remember how the Yankees were pressing and swinging at everything C. C. Sabathia (Bill James' favorite pitcher) threw, and how the Indians destroyed them in the playoffs. Then, down three games, the Red Sox kept their bats on their shoulders. Everything Sabathia threw was in the 90's with lots of action and in the dirt. I don't think he lasted three innings against the Sawx. I hate walks, but they plague even the best pitchers, and the Nats are still easy and a lot of fun to root for. Let's watch Lannan get a big win today!

Posted by: flynnie | April 6, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

there should be one poster for every paper, plain and simple -- including the home delivery editions. that i pay $3.60/week for my daily paper, have been a subscriber for years and don't get a poster is complete CRAP. way to put your casual readers above your daily subscribers, WaPo. please send that to your ed board, Barry!

Posted by: The Borg | April 6, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse

I'm wearing my #24 tee today, so they have to win, right? ;-) Lets go Nats!!

Posted by: natsfan1a | April 6, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

From the first, I've said, Nats better than 500 this year. I've been a little shaken these last three games, not because they lost, but rather by the manner in which they lost. But, still, there have been a few positive developments that are keeping me optimistic. So Nats are still going to beat 500.
One thing that's bothering me though and I'm wondering if it is just me. I'm a major fan of Manny's but I've really questioned some of his moves lately.

Posted by: Jeeves | April 6, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Jeeves,

When Manny did the 3 lineup changes for the start of the third Philly game I was puzzled. He seems to leave some pitchers in for way too long (Perez, 94 pitches) and yank others when all they have done is give up ground ball singles (Bergmann). And for the life of me I can not figure out his affection for Colome. Maybe he is managing for the 160 game season and not so much to sweep series.

Posted by: Dale | April 6, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

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