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Zimmermann: Um, Wow

Getting my first look at Cy Young ... er, I mean Jordan Zimmermann ... here at HSCS. First inning went something like this:

Flopped single into left from Cory Sullivan, hard groundball single to right from Marlon Anderson, 89-mph slider to get Rob Mackowiak looking, fly to right from Nick Evans, and three-pitch strikeout of old friend Ryan Church, who chased a high, 0-2, 93-mph fastball from Zimmermann to end the inning.

Fairly impressive. I'll likely pen a story on the young man for tomorrow's $.75 edition, so I'm not going to tip my entire hand here. But there's plenty to say about this kid, who now has allowed only those two singles in six spring innings, in which he has eight strikeouts and no walks.

Other items: Elijah Dukes just absolutely crushed one from John Maine over the bleachers in left, a two-run homer, putting the Nats up 2-0 after one.

And Dan Steinberg, a must read for any DC sports fan, has a note on the Fed chairman, forecasting, and the Nats.

By Barry Svrluga  |  March 10, 2009; 1:20 PM ET
 
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Comments

You didn't mention Milledge stealing 2nd and then getting caught stealing 3rd right before Dukes put that ball in orbit.

I'd love some analysis on what Milledge was doing...

Posted by: estuartj | March 10, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

"I'll likely pen a story on the young man for tomorrow's $.75 edition, so I'm not going to tip my entire hand here."

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

Chico, please take note.

Posted by: NatsNut | March 10, 2009 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Who is coaching third base for us this year?

Posted by: lowcountry | March 10, 2009 1:37 PM | Report abuse

Barry, it's great to have you back, even if it is just for a very short spell.

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | March 10, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Pat Listach is the Nats 3rd base coach

Posted by: Brian_ | March 10, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

"Fairly impressive. I'll likely pen a story on the young man for tomorrow's $.75 edition"

Please don't. We all remember the results of your past over-the-top gushing about Nationals players. Shawn Hill's sinker? Weapon of Mass Production? How'd those turn out?

So please, just go the hell away and don't write another word about any Nationals player. Go cover the Redskins or something.

Posted by: nunof1 | March 10, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

nunof1: are you Chico's mom or something?

Posted by: JennX_ | March 10, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Ok, maybe I'm a little behind on this but, does...

nunof1 = ABM?

Or is nunof1 someone completely different?

Just curious.

Posted by: Section505203 | March 10, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

What's going on in the game, people??? Can't listen at work. HELP.

Posted by: NatsNut | March 10, 2009 1:48 PM | Report abuse

And he can put down a bunt. The complete package.

Posted by: Juliasdad | March 10, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

@ESJ -- Milledge was caught stealing on a planned double steal.

Mackowiak just hits into a DP to end the top of the 3rd. JZimm seems to be comfortable pitching from the stretch ...

Posted by: erocks33 | March 10, 2009 1:53 PM | Report abuse

I wish someone at the Washington Post would write about the state of MASN. I can't find anything on that network about the Nats... at least O's fans have the Tom Davis Show. I emailed an inquiry to them...no response. Seems like all they show now is basketball... I know that's hot now but some spring training coverage would be nice.

Posted by: lostein | March 10, 2009 1:53 PM | Report abuse

If you'll tell me what ABM means, I could maybe answer that. But right now I have no idea what you're talking about.

But don't feel bad. It appears like most of you don't have any idea what I'm talking about either.

Posted by: nunof1 | March 10, 2009 1:53 PM | Report abuse

"nunof1: are you Chico's mom or something?"

No, I just don't want Barry Svrluga jinxing Zimmermann like he jinxed Shawn Hill and WMP. Do you?

Posted by: nunof1 | March 10, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Eldred struck out in the bottom of the second, Cintron reached on an error. Alberto Gonzalez smoked a ball off the glove of the first baseman (a hit), Cintron went to 3rd, Gonzalez ended up at 1st. Jordan Zimmermann sacrificed Gonzalez to 2nd (I wish he'd swung away with a 2-run lead), but Willie Harris fouled out to end the bottom of the 2nd.

In the top of the third, Zimmermann struck out John Maine, issued his first walk of the season to Sullivan, and Anderson got a hit off an infielders' glove, moving Sullivan to third. Zimmermann induced Mackowiak to hit into an inning-ending double play, however, and his scoreless streak for the spring was preserved.

Posted by: faNATic | March 10, 2009 1:56 PM | Report abuse

MASN = Mister Angelos's Sports Network. That's all you need to know to figure out what's up there. And sadly, the Nationals are stuck with it for 30 years or so, thanks to Bud Selig and Peter Angelos.

Posted by: nunof1 | March 10, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

"Jordan Zimmermann sacrificed Gonzalez to 2nd (I wish he'd swung away with a 2-run lead)"

I don't. I'm glad to see a Nats pitcher bunting successfully for a change. Can the others learn by watching?

Posted by: nunof1 | March 10, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

One time when I was a kid my mom got into an apparently unnecessary argument with some grumpy guy in a parking lot, which she ended by saying "What did you have for breakfast, onions?"

Suffice it to say that I think nunof1 had onions for breakfast today. Dude, you've made some contributions of late, but hold off on picking fights with CiL and Barry. They have tenure in here.

Posted by: BobLHead | March 10, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Someone asked about O'Connor's option status. I believe this is his last option year. He was added to the 40-man & 25-man in April 2006 and used his first option year the same season. He began the 2007 season on the DL (first 15-day & eventually moved to 60-day), he was optioned to the minors in June 2007, his second option year (I believe the Nats got a fourth option year because he was not up at all in 2007).

He came off the 40-man at the end of the 2007 season but was re-added in April of 2008. His third option year was used when he was sent down in May of 2008.

So, the 2009 season is his fourth and final option year.

Posted by: Brian_ | March 10, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Eldred hits an opposite-field 3-run HR, 5-0 Nats.

Two outs: Milledge, Zimmerman (K). Dukes scored runs with the Eldred HR.

Posted by: faNATic | March 10, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

ABM - An Briosca Mor - a big cookie (Gaelic). We did this last year. Will the real ABM clarify this with a post? On second thought...

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | March 10, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

I'm going to ask this again, who the bloody hell is Eldred?

Posted by: irishnat | March 10, 2009 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Brian.

Eldred the Rally Possum strikes again!

________________________________
Pat Listach is the Nats 3rd base coach

Posted by: Brian_ | March 10, 2009 1:44 PM

Posted by: lowcountry | March 10, 2009 2:04 PM | Report abuse

faNATic, Thank You! (exhales)

Posted by: NatsNut | March 10, 2009 2:04 PM | Report abuse

I only said that about Zimmermann because there was 1 out already and a runner on third, and a squeeze was unlikely. Moreover, Zimmermann is a better than decent hitter (albeit admittedly untested against MLB pitching), having been a DH for his college team when not pitching, I believe.

Posted by: faNATic | March 10, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

All this off John Maine?? Wow.

Posted by: NatsNut | March 10, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

BobLHead, glad to see that you "get" sarcasm, such as I directed toward Barry. And how long do I have to post here so that I get tenure and no one is allowed to disagree with anything I say?

Posted by: nunof1 | March 10, 2009 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Barry is getting another call-out from Charlie and Dave, both for Dave Florida and the Jaegler/Jageler misspelling.

Posted by: faNATic | March 10, 2009 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Yes, all 5 earned runs off John Maine.

In the top of the 4th, Jordan Zimmermann has allowed his second walk of the game (and spring training) to Evans, and allows a hit to Church.

Two men aboard, nobody out.

Posted by: faNATic | March 10, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Eldred at one time was considered a high level hitting prospect. He mashed in Charlotte, but that is a homer-friendly environment. Maybe he's this year's Nelson Cruz and finally puts it together, and gets a call when (if) Nick is traded.

At this point, would anyone be surprised if the rotation eventually (say, by 2010/11) shakes out with Strasburg - Zimmermann - A lefty hard thrower among Detwiler / McGeary / our #10 pick - one of Balester or Martis - Lannan?

Also - do the Nats consider shifting Detwiler to the pen at some pointthis year? A hard throwing LH reliever has value.

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | March 10, 2009 2:11 PM | Report abuse

In 2004, EVERYBODY was gushing over Ian Desmond's spring performance... Let's not get our hopes up too high.

Posted by: charley42 | March 10, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Six years to tenure, nunoff (provide you publish enough). And at that point, people don't stop disagreeing - they just stop listening.

Posted by: lowcountry | March 10, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Zimmermann hits his pitch count with a slightly tougher 4th inning. First two get aboard, as mentioned, he gets Green out after an 8-pitch at-bat, and Acta comes to get him.

3.1 innings, 62 pitches (not too efficient), responsible for the 2 runners on board. Gustavo Chacin is on in relief, which may not be a good sign for Zimmermann's spring ERA.

Posted by: faNATic | March 10, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

faNATic, you're my new best friend.

Let's see how J-Zimm does when they've figured him out.

Posted by: NatsNut | March 10, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

At this point Eldred is a two-outcome guy, a home run or a strikeout. From his career numbres, 157 of his 594 career minor league hits are home runs (26%). But unfortunately, he has struck out 698 times in 2,257 minor league at-bats (31%).

Posted by: Brian_ | March 10, 2009 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Aw, c'mon Natscan - he'd be a link to the 1994 best team in baseball.

I say we put up a 1994 flag and force MLB to tell us to take it down.

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | March 10, 2009 1:52 PM

~~~~~~~

... now there's a flag I'd salute!!

Posted by: natscanreduxit | March 10, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

nunof1, I don't think I'm the only one who didn't read your anti-Barry post as sarcasm (or snark, to use the NJ-approved term). I'll put on my reading glasses if you will sharpen your pencil. Deal?

Posted by: BobLHead | March 10, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of Barry, he has a new post up.

Also, for NatsNut, Charlie and Dave said that not all of Maine's pitches are working for him yet, so he has a limited arsenal today.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | March 10, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, BobLHead, not following your snark here. Am I supposed to be insulted?

Posted by: nunof1 | March 10, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Also, re. the fishwrap edition, according to the coverage item alluded to in today's Bog, all sports content will be appearing on the web (for free) many hours before the paper hits the street. It's a Post decision, not a Chico decision.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | March 10, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Brian - 2 true outcomes. If only he'd add a 3d (BB). Looks like he became untracked in 2006 (injury)? Before he had a .350+ OBP. K/BB ratio of 5:1 at AAA. Wow.

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | March 10, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

I was about to be happy about the 6 shutout innings by Zimmermann and Chacin, but then I looked at that Mets line-up again and while it's always nice to see your guys do well, it doesn't mean much against the Mets C team...

Posted by: estuartj | March 10, 2009 3:00 PM | Report abuse

>Also - do the Nats consider shifting Detwiler to the pen at some pointthis year? A hard throwing LH reliever has value.

They probably wouldn't do that until they were convinced that he was completely mental like Bergmann or something. Might help him regain his control if he only has to work on two pitches, and doesn't have 4 days to ponder each start.

Posted by: Brue | March 10, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

>while it's always nice to see your guys do well, it doesn't mean much against the Mets C team...

He threw 60+ pitches and it's still early in ST. That would bode well for his endurance since he's already 2/3 of the way there on his pitch count. That, and he wasn't walking a bunch of people, which means he was around the plate. It's still early. Got almost a month before the season starts.

Posted by: Brue | March 10, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

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