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Bard Has Day Off

UPDATE | 5:49 p.m. Catcher Josh Bard's right groin injury has not limited his time in the starting lineup.

Bard is out of tonight's game, but not as a result of the injury. Wil Nieves is listed as the starter in his place. Jim Riggleman, the Washington Nationals' interim manager, said he intended to give Bard the time off, and to insert Nieves to face Ted Lilly, the Cubs' originally scheduled starter.

Bard has been nagged by the injury since June 29, but has battled through it. He has been slowed on the base paths because of it, even though he is able to squat and hit fine. That has proven true in his numbers: Bard hit .370 and batted in nine runs in 14 games before the All-Star Game. Because of Bard's production, Riggleman said recently that he would receive most of the playing time behind home plate.

Chicago Cubs
1. Fukudome, CF
2. Theriot, SS
3. Lee, 1B
4. Ramirez, 3B
5. Bradley, RF
6. Soriano, LF
7. Fontenot, 2B
8. Hill, C
9. Wells, P

Washington Nationals
1. Morgan, CF
2. Johnson, 1B
3. Zimmerman, 3B
4. Dunn, LF
5. Willingham, RF
6. Harris, 2B
7. Gonzalez, SS
8. Nieves, C
9. Zimmermann, P

By Mark Viera  |  July 18, 2009; 4:04 PM ET
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Is this back to back games out for Guzman? Not sad to see him out of the lineup, but I'm a bit surprised. AGonz has really been hitting as of late and deserves the playing time.

Posted by: souldrummer | July 18, 2009 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Even if the reason for keeping Bard out tonight is the injury, I gotta think that the man deserves a rest. Playing hurt is very difficult, and catching is the toughest position there is. He should spend a few days in the whirlpool and come back energized. Just my 2 cents...

Posted by: glennpc | July 18, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

I hope it's nothing more than that they want Bard to catch Mock tomorrow.

Posted by: gengreen17 | July 18, 2009 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Nieves got 4 hits in his last game; should have gotten the start on Thursday! Bard needs time to rest.

OK, we keep doing the same thing thinking the results will be different (see Einstein). Time to shake-up the batting 'bout Gonzales hitting second, Johnson 3rd, Willingham 4th, then Dunn and Zimimmerman...before you scoff, check out the 21 hit line-up.

Posted by: Bill-CH | July 18, 2009 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Very true, Scooter. Few now remember that the spread of Christianity was due in large part to Nero's unwillingness to open his wallet for the big free agent lions. They had some good young prospects but . . . well, you know. Coincidentally, Nero was a real estate developer as well.
2. At least since Roman times, it has been part of the fans' job to think their favorite team's owners are cheap or idiotic, preferably both.
Posted by: Scooter_ | July 18, 2009 12:28 PM

Posted by: lowcountry | July 18, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Bill-CH, I am in agreement with you. Off to the ballpark on a gorgeous night. Didn't give the Lerners any money though - bought the tix on craigslist...

Posted by: mo_dc | July 18, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Flynnie - I like the kid from Fairfax but everyone's heart as got to be with Tom tomorrow. I thought he was tearing-up on 18 today.

Posted by: lowcountry | July 18, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Bill-CH: I'm with you on a lineup shakeup. Based on either a LHSP or a RHSP, I wouldn't mind seeing the following lineups...
1) Morgan -CF
2) Gonzalez or Guzman -SS
3) Johnson -1B
4) R.Zimmerman -3B
5) Dunn -LF
6) Willingham -RF
7) Bard -C
8) Hernandez -2B
9) Pitcher

1) Morgan -CF
2) Johnson -1B
3) Guzman -SS
4) Dunn -LF
5) R.Zimmerman -3B
6) Willingham -RF
7) Harris -2B
8) Nieves or Bard -C
9) Pitcher

Posted by: BinM | July 18, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Jesus Flores is the catcher on this club only a freak injury has kept him out of the lineup and why Zimmerman is still batting third is goofy the pressure keeps mounting and not a coach has a clue, take the pressure off the kid and drop him to sixth or seventh and lets see how it goes.I'm not going to comment about JR's moves last night but a call to Syracuse is in order not for this year but for next season, two words Mr.Rizzo Tim Foli.

Posted by: dargregmag | July 18, 2009 5:59 PM | Report abuse

That's what I'm sayin', lowcountry. Finally, someone who pays attention.

Posted by: Scooter_ | July 18, 2009 6:02 PM | Report abuse

@dargreg: As much as we all (& the FO) like Flores, he's looking a little fragile (probable season-ending injuries in each if the last two years). Bard has been a nice cover for 2009, but the FO needs to be aware that Bard is at his best in a #1 or platoon role. Nieves is a #2, but with declining numbers. A Flores / Bard platoon in 2010 would'nt be a bad thing, while the kids (Rooney / Peacock / Norris) mature.
Discussion on a new MGR is best left until October - By then, the FO will have a better view of who's available & what might be the best fit.

Posted by: BinM | July 18, 2009 6:23 PM | Report abuse

They could have shut down Bard after the all-star break in order to speed his healing since he'd already had 3 days off without missing a game. It was stoopid to interrupt that groin injury. I know. I've had one since '73 when I was pitching and I couldn't get my left lead leg around, and I hit two batters in a row, and the kid in the on-deck circle was crying before he even came up. The ump tells my coach to take me out, my coach shakes him off, and I end up hitting that punk too.

Posted by: Brue | July 18, 2009 6:54 PM | Report abuse

Direct quote from Sunshine Bobby in the first inning: "Where is that ball going?"

In the centerfielder's glove. Short of the warning track. It's called a sacrifice fly, Sunshine. Happens all the time.

Couldn't help noticing Sunshine and Dribs ripping Soriano for his defense in left. Considering our leftfielder is Dunn, that does that nerve.

Posted by: jdschulz50 | July 18, 2009 7:18 PM | Report abuse

knew post.

Posted by: leetee1955 | July 18, 2009 7:47 PM | Report abuse

dave just mentioned that jimbow courted milton bradley last offseason and that bradley signed a comparable offer from the cubs. i guess jimbow wanted the first "all head case" outfield of bradley-milledge-dukes. but they all have tools.

Posted by: surly_w | July 18, 2009 8:10 PM | Report abuse

I think I like the new shortstop - keep Gonzalez in the line up !!!!

Posted by: JT2009 | July 18, 2009 8:24 PM | Report abuse

sleepless again...

Posted by: cokedispatch | July 18, 2009 10:22 PM | Report abuse

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