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Tonight's Lineups

Baltimore

Roberts - 4
Jones - 8
Markakis - 9
Huff - 3
Mora - 5
Reimold - 7
Moeller - 2
Izturis - 6
Hill - 1

Washington

Guzman - 6
Johnson - 3
Zimmerman - 5
Dunn - 9
Willingham - 7
Belliard - 4
Bard - 2
Maxwell - 8
Zimmermann - 1

By Chico Harlan  |  May 22, 2009; 3:35 PM ET
 
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Next: Flores, Crow, Willingham

Comments

RAR RAR RAR, look at this equal coverage of the Orioles!!! This is the WASHINGTON Post, and here's 28 words vs. 28 words!

Posted by: Section506 | May 22, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Nunof1, CiL, Periculum, Dovelevine: bad
Most other bloggers and the NJ staff: good.

Posted by: outsider6 | May 22, 2009

________________________________

On outsider6:

Rumor has it he's almost incomprehensible in person (owing to his heavily accented and alchohol-slurred speech) and this combined with his being dirt poor and ugly makes him very uncomfortable with human interaction of any kind.

Posted by: periculum | May 22, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

To all those who read the Kurkjian article,

Did this cause a little bit of a shock at all?

"...And it's difficult to depend on another center fielder, Elijah Dukes (currently on the DL), because of his disruptive nature in the clubhouse. "If he were gone," one National said, "the clubhouse would be a happier place.""

Where has anyone else been on reporting this?

Posted by: Section138 | May 22, 2009 3:49 PM | Report abuse

@ 506 - And Baltimore is ON TOP!!! OUTRAGEOUS!!!

Posted by: Section220 | May 22, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

periculum

You are right. Being poor does make people intolerable.

I had to reprimand my butler for being poor just the other day. Thrashed him quite severely.

Fortunately he has no accent.

Posted by: soundbloke | May 22, 2009 4:01 PM | Report abuse

138, can you post a link to the entire article?

Posted by: FloresFan | May 22, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

I think there was a link in the last thread, ff.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | May 22, 2009 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Haven't read it yet but I think this may be it (courtesy of leetee):

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/columns/story?columnist=kurkjian_tim&id=4198972

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | May 22, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Try
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/columns/story?columnist=kurkjian_tim&id=4198972

Posted by: HALjr | May 22, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Thanks guys.

Posted by: FloresFan | May 22, 2009 4:07 PM | Report abuse

"...And it's difficult to depend on another center fielder, Elijah Dukes (currently on the DL), because of his disruptive nature in the clubhouse. "If he were gone," one National said, "the clubhouse would be a happier place.""

Wait, Elijah Dukes isn't a great teammate? What shocking news. Who would have thought a short fused sociopath would make the clubhouse a less happy place?

I mean, I think its common knowledge Dukes is terrible teammate to Nats fans. To the people in the Mid-West, who tiny Tim wrote that piece for, its news.

I'm shocked someone actually said that about Dukes to the national media. Elijah Dukes will murder whoever said it. Seriously, he's going to murder them. Dukes attacked his roommate in Durham, because Dukes thought the roommate said stuff about him. Lets just hope it was Alex Cintron.

Posted by: BillyBeane | May 22, 2009 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Nunof1, CiL, Periculum, Dovelevine: bad
Most other bloggers and the NJ staff: good.
Posted by: outsider6

Hey what'd I do? All I said was would Ray Knight make a good manager.

Posted by: dovelevine | May 22, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Just read it. Good piece, thanks to leetee for the link.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | May 22, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

>>I mean, I think its common knowledge Dukes is terrible teammate to Nats fans.

Hmmm. I must not be a Nats fan. Cause this is the first time I eva heard that.

Posted by: dovelevine | May 22, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

@ Section138

I think that was meant for Milledge not Dukes. I could be wrong. It's very convoluted in that sentence, but with that being said if Dukes is a cancer. They must extricate themselves of this man...maybe they can find a head to go on his body.

Posted by: Berndaddy | May 22, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

You can just pour that coke through your computer's port, for me HAL.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | May 22, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Ted Williams?

---

They must extricate themselves of this man...maybe they can find a head to go on his body.

Posted by: Berndaddy | May 22, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | May 22, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

If I were Manny, I would switch JMax and Belly, the saavy vet with more off-speed hitting accumen.

Posted by: dclifer97 | May 22, 2009 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Manny's comments about having to bat Flores and Milledge in the middle of the lineup didn't even make sense. If Milledge was so bad why did he think he should bat him leadoff. And if he was so good, it would have been a luxury to bat him there. So that makes no sense. Same with Flores. Even on this team he should be in the middle of the lineup--at 5th or 6th--exactly where he was last year. So what the freak is Manny yapping abut?

Posted by: dovelevine | May 22, 2009 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm. I must not be a Nats fan. Cause this is the first time I eva heard that.

Posted by: dovelevine | May 22, 2009

__________________________________________

My understanding is that the guy is very competitive. He doesn't like to lose and it doesn't sit well with him. Other than that, given his legal trials and travails, and the fact that he is constantly under the supervision of a mentor-cum-social-skills-advisor who is an ex-cop?? Because of those legal issues?

Sheesh, the guy has to pay all of his salary out to pay alimony because his ex-wife found a really good shark of a lawyer.

Again, case-in-point, a reporter voicing an "opinion" without revealing any sources, without any experience as a professional ballplayer, no actual presence in that locker room. Are these facts that can be corroborated by a number of sources? My god working for ESPN must be like laissez faire. Even and especially RI has to corroborate with multiple sources or feel the ire of one Daniel M Snyder.

Posted by: periculum | May 22, 2009 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Natsfan1a1,
Congrats on being the only person ever to compare Dukes to Ted Williams. Unless Dukes joins the army and his a homerun in his first AB back, yours might last as the only comparison.

Posted by: dclifer97 | May 22, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

"So what the freak is Manny yapping abut?
Posted by: dovelevine | May 22, 2009"

Are we even sure Manny said that?

Posted by: periculum | May 22, 2009 4:19 PM | Report abuse

I missed it, where is this Dukes quotation coming from?

Posted by: Section506 | May 22, 2009 4:19 PM | Report abuse

I'm not comparing them, dclifer. I'm suggesting Ted Williams head to go on his body, as somebody had suggested finding one.

Also, as a public service, I must report that the Zimmerman/Markakis post on the Baseball Insider now has a poll embedded in it. Vote early and vote often.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | May 22, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

506, see the ESPN links.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | May 22, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse

506, there's an article by Kurkjian on ESPN's site. Link is above, as is the pulled quote about Dukes.

Posted by: Scooter_ | May 22, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

"Same with Flores. Even on this team he should be in the middle of the lineup--at 5th or 6th--exactly where he was last year."

It also made little sense for Manny to depricate his first-string catcher (and any of his players for that matter). But yeah, Manny is a perplexing guy...Milledge not good enough to bat in the middle of the order, yet batting him in the leadoff spot where he was clearly ill-suited. Sometimes I think Manny is being misquoted.

Posted by: dclifer97 | May 22, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

"Unless Dukes joins the army and his a homerun in his first AB back, yours might last as the only comparison.

Posted by: dclifer97 | May 22, 2009"

Williams joined the army-airforce, later just the airforce under duress. Because many felt he was a draft dodger (only son) an older Williams was "drafted" to fly fighters in the Koran War. He was famous for having 20-10 vision. One of the things that made him a great hitter also helped to make him a reasonable pilot.

Ted Williams was the very last .400 hitter in baseball. Achieving the feat at an unbelievably advanced age of almost 40 at the beginning of the modern baseball era. Following that with a .388 year I think?

I don't think there is any comparison?

Posted by: periculum | May 22, 2009 4:23 PM | Report abuse

I just read the piece on ESPN. I was very interested in the line about Dukes because I was always opposed to having him on the team.

I won't repeat why, I've already written 2 or 3 comments on the subject. I will repeat that I wish the Nats would trade him away.

I realize there is a worry about who would play RF next year. At one time I thought they might put Dunn there and start Willingham in left but I'm not sure Dunn can handle the position. (If we keep Dunn, I'd argue they should leave him alone in left and play anyone else at 1st if they trade Nick J.)

Nonetheless, it'll be a happy day for me when Dukes is off the team. My hope is the Nats will end the experment with Dukes before the trading deadline. We gave up an "A" level pitcher to get him, if we could get a major league or even AAA reliever for him, it would be a nice return on our investment and he could become another team's problem.

Posted by: grforbes | May 22, 2009 4:23 PM | Report abuse

"I'm not comparing them, dclifer. I'm suggesting Ted Williams head to go on his body, as somebody had suggested finding one."

Oh, thought you were comparing them in that Williams was completely self-absorbed. My comment was aimed at humor and in no way meant as a slight.

Posted by: dclifer97 | May 22, 2009 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Hope you're thirsty, 1a. Cola product headed your way ... now.

Posted by: Scooter_ | May 22, 2009 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Are we even sure Manny said that? Posted by: periculum

From Tim Kurkjian's ESPN.com article posted now:
"Last year, I'd come to the park hoping we didn't get shut out," Acta said. "We had to hit [outfielder Lastings] Milledge and [catcher Jesus] Flores in the middle of the order. That was pretty weak. Now, when we're at full throttle, I can hit Flores seventh or eighth."

Posted by: dovelevine | May 22, 2009 4:25 PM | Report abuse

No worries, dclifer. I didn't take it as a slight but rather thought that I hadn't been clear.

And cheers, Scooter.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | May 22, 2009 4:27 PM | Report abuse

It was deliriously good. I got the chance to watch most of it at a bar (skipped out on a company meeting - shhhhh!), and it was just incredible.

So many folks found a way to complain about it - "why couldn't they find a way to spread this out over the last week?" - but I don't care. You don't get many chances to see something like that.

And this is something that's been percolating for the past two years, but I do miss Brendan Harris as a Nat. He's the one part of that trade that worked out for someone. He's Jamey Carroll, v. 2.0.

-----

Oh, and confidential to JiM: that was some game in Chicago last night. Was just reading the gamer, 20 runs on 20 hits, eh?

Posted by: JohninMpls | May 22, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Looks like Shenin was reading our little diatribe and pulled out some decent research in the end. And he picks Zimmerman as any good B-more fan who knew Brooksie and Cal should.


Posted by: periculum | May 22, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Sounds like it was worth skipping out to see, JiM. Good thing you went to a bar instead of Burger King...

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | May 22, 2009 4:31 PM | Report abuse

dclifer sez: "It also made little sense for Manny to depricate his first-string catcher (and any of his players for that matter)."

I dunno, man. I hardly think it's slanderous to say that Lastings Milledge and Jesus Flores were not ready, at 23, to bat 4th and 5th for a major-league ball club. It's not the nicest thing you can say about a person, but it's hardly an insult to call someone not-a-major-league-cleanup-hitter, is it?

Posted by: Scooter_ | May 22, 2009 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Dukes is a valuable piece on this team and his bat in the 5 hole makes this a much much tougher lineup. To date, Elijah hasn't caused any public trouble, and until he proves otherwise, I believe this teams offense should be built around Zimm, Elijah, Flores and Dunn.

Posted by: kingtutts | May 22, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

A couple of the players wives are clients of a friend of mine. In regard to Dukes, the word from their husbands confirms Kurkjian's comments in the article. Apparently he is a huge distraction, has attitude problems and really causes more problems than his talent is worth.

I read a quote about last year's team with regard to how p*ssed Acta was with Bowden for loading up his team with problem children. Looking at 2008's roster; Lo Duco, Estrada, FLopez, OPerez, Dukes, Milledge, Mackowiak and Ayala all had rumors of clubhouse issues, tantrums, unprofessionalism or other things for Acta to deal with. Man, its a miracle they won 59.

Posted by: tboss | May 22, 2009 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Williams would have rather hit .400 than win the pennant, which is why he couldn't carry DiMaggio's jock, despite his gaudy stats. I don't have the sense that Dukes, sociopath or not, would rather put up personal stats than be a winner.

Oh, and Williams hit .406 at age 23, not almost 40. He hit .388 at 39.

Posted by: chiefwj | May 22, 2009 4:34 PM | Report abuse

>>A couple of the players wives are clients of a friend of mine.

Yea well my 2nd cousins first uncles twin brothers wifes daughter.......

Posted by: dovelevine | May 22, 2009 4:36 PM | Report abuse

I read the Kurkjian piece a few minutes ago, before I signed onto NJ, and was surprised by the same quote about Dukes some of you were.

First of all, despite Dukes's personal problems being common knowledge, I had not seen any reporting about friction with teammates. And I follow the Nats pretty closely.

Second, even if it's true (and it certainly wouldn't surprise me if it is), it is a pretty dumb thing for anyone on the team to say, because it will become Topic 1 in the clubhouse and everyone will be taking sides, trying to figure out who said it, etc.

Third, what does it mean for the long term? Many of us have been figuring Dukes to be a major piece of the long-term puzzle, either in CF or more likely, eventually in RF. Does this mean the situation is deteriorating to the point where they might be looking to trade? And if so, it can't be good for his trade value to have this out there.

An ominous note in an otherwise positive article.

Posted by: Meridian1 | May 22, 2009 4:38 PM | Report abuse

>>which is why he couldn't carry DiMaggio's jock,

Oh and BTW, Joe DiMaggio dunked.

Posted by: dovelevine | May 22, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Why is Bard playing again instead of Nieves?

Posted by: nervousnatsfan | May 22, 2009 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and Williams hit .406 at age 23, not almost 40. He hit .388 at 39.

Posted by: chiefwj | May 22, 2009

________________________________________

He also hit .407 in 52 and 53. I think those were the "partial years" in which he was "drafted".

In 1960, his last year he hit .316 with 29 home runs and a slugging percentage of .634. He only had 15 doubles and 72 RBI though. WE ONLY WISH WE HAD ONE OUTFIELDER who could match that gaudy stat in their early 20's!!?

That opinion about the "gaudy stats" over winning was originally drafted by Dimaggio. The guy the Yankees tried to trade for Williams. Boston got greedy and asked for their catcher as well. Williams must have had some value ... even over a DiMaggio. DiMaggio liked to "dis" people in public, everyone from Sinatra, to Peter Lorre. He seemed very vindictive if you ask me.

Posted by: periculum | May 22, 2009 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Why is Bard playing again instead of Nieves?
Posted by: nervousnatsfan | May 22, 2009

______________________________________

Defensive reasons. He appears to call a much better game than Nieves. Plus he seems more comfortable with the younger pitchers brought up from the minors.

Posted by: periculum | May 22, 2009 4:51 PM | Report abuse

"I dunno, man. I hardly think it's slanderous to say that Lastings Milledge and Jesus Flores were not ready, at 23, to bat 4th and 5th for a major-league ball club. It's not the nicest thing you can say about a person, but it's hardly an insult to call someone not-a-major-league-cleanup-hitter, is it?"
---------------------------------------
Scooter, I think you said it far more eloquently than Manny did.

Manny: "We had to hit [outfielder Lastings] Milledge and [catcher Jesus] Flores in the middle of the order. That was pretty weak. Now, when we're at full throttle, I can hit Flores seventh or eighth."

Posted by: dclifer97 | May 22, 2009 4:53 PM | Report abuse

dovelevine, you need to take a chill pill and tune down the hate.

Sounds like tboss' connection is relevant enough to consider. If you've got your evidence to offer, then bring it, instead of that snotty comment.

As for attacking Manny over batting Milledge cleanup last year and leading him off for a while this year, you're making no sense. One has got nothing to do with the other.

Milledge at his best (I know, that made me chuckle a little, too) has a combination of speed and a little power, that could qualify him for a number of spots in the lineup. At the worst points of last year, that power made him acceptable in an emergency situation to bat cleanup. Flores went in that spot because he's a pretty good RBI man as compared to the other options at the time. Neither one of those guys is a normal cleanup hitter and I think they know that better than we do.

They decided to try Milledge in the leadoff spot, because of the speed factor (and having a little power in that spot didn't hurt). There's nothing illogical about that decision. It just didn't work and it lasted about a week. Get over it, already.

Sometimes teams try things, just to see how it might work out. It's kind of what you do in a long season. The Orioles once used Eddie Murray at 3B for a three-game series to start the 1978 season. So I guess Earl Weaver should be removed from the Hall of Fame for that dumb move?

Posted by: baltova1 | May 22, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

>>"I dunno, man. I hardly think it's slanderous to say that Lastings Milledge and Jesus Flores were not ready, at 23, to bat 4th and 5th for a major-league ball club.

It's not slanderous. It just makes no sense since he then moved Milledge a half year later to leadoff and Flores still belongs in that spot and not in the 7th or 8th hole like he said.
i guess it's just Mannyspeak.

Posted by: dovelevine | May 22, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

In any case if Maxwell plays well problem solved. The outfield would probably be better fielding wise with Bernadina and Maxwell.

Posted by: periculum | May 22, 2009 4:57 PM | Report abuse

I understand the Yankees, Red Sox, Rays, Blue Jaye, Mets, Phillies, Braves, Marlins, .... [fill in other 29 teams] Giants, Dodgers, Rockies, D'backs, and Padres also have some clubhouse problems. Hell, there are attitude problems in my own house. Things would be more harmonious if one of them were not here too. I've got problems, you've got problems, we've all got problems.....Give me a break.

Posted by: natbiscuits | May 22, 2009 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Elijah Dukes is a game changer when he is on his breaking pitches as he will hit with power and for average.

In the field, he has the best arm on the team and has above average speed and good range.

We should be supporting the Nats players, not tearing them apart.

I am sure Rizzo and Acta have this under control.

Posted by: dmacman88 | May 22, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

What makes no sense is naming names in a negative way. What Manny could have said:
1. Nick Johnson is healthy and hitting well.
2. Dunn adds power to the lineup.
3. Z'man has been on a tear.
4. We have more OF depth.
5. Guzman...good stuff.

Posted by: dclifer97 | May 22, 2009 5:06 PM | Report abuse

well said biscuit...utopia, unavailable.

Posted by: cokedispatch | May 22, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

I like Dukes and think we are a better team (on the field) with him than without him. That said, I have no doubt about the Kurkjian quote. Just like things have "clicked" for Zimm on the field this year, I hope that things will "click" for Dukes off the field so that he can realize his potential.

Posted by: dclifer97 | May 22, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse

The Dukes thing is really troubling to me, not because I think everyone in the clubhouse needs to be friends, but because I've been very appreciative of the way Dukes has been kept under control.

It's also a very generic statement. Does he pick fights with people? Is he miserable about losing so much? Does he have a different style than some of the other Nats?

We know so little, but it's just thrown out there. Irresponsible? I don't know enough to even know.

Posted by: Section506 | May 22, 2009 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Not to change the discussion, but this is the third straight night where the opposing SP has really good numbers against Dunn; Hope it's not an 0-fer with 3 k's waiting to happen.

Posted by: BinM | May 22, 2009 6:32 PM | Report abuse

So Tim K. writes an article that basically calls Dukes a clubhouse cancer even though he's not the beat writer and neither beat writer(Post/Times) have issued anything close to that but yet we've got so called nats fans piling on and ready to ship a talented player out of here yeah gotta love that support,that being said i didn't like what Dukes did with his ex-wife either but that issue was dealt with and as far as i'm concerned he's got a clean slate until he demonstrates otherwise.

Posted by: dargregmag | May 22, 2009 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Well said, dargregmag.

Folks, we have no idea what goes on in that clubhouse. Let's not jump to any conclusions here.

Man, I hope the Nats beat down the team with the Halloween colors this weekend.

GO NATS!!

Posted by: Section505203 | May 22, 2009 6:40 PM | Report abuse

Ted Williams hit 400 when he was very young not at the end of his career.

Posted by: natsguy | May 22, 2009 6:53 PM | Report abuse

nupost, if anyone cares.

Posted by: BinM | May 22, 2009 8:04 PM | Report abuse

I am so uninterested in the Nats' (and their wives, for crying out loud), complaining about Dukes. A distraction? From what? Their card games? Let's get professional, guys, and try to make your teammates better and stop complaining.

Posted by: paulkp | May 22, 2009 9:50 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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