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The Bench, the Lineups

* This might be self-evident, but I point it out nonetheless. Injuries, trades, etc., sure have taken a toll on Washington's bench. Remember the beginning of the year, when the Nats had Willie Harris, Josh Willingham, Bard and/or Nieves, Ronnie Belliard and Elijah Dukes on their bench? Now that was a major league bench. These days, especially with Nyjer Morgan's hand injury pulling Harris into everyday duty, the bench is pretty weak. Mike Morse. Jorge Padilla. Alberto Gonzalez (since Belliard is playing most often at second). Either Bard or Nieves. And now, Pete Orr.

* The basic explanation for the Orr decision: The Nats wanted a lefty on the bench. "That's the main thing," GM Mike Rizzo said, miming a left-handed swing. "And he gives us some versatility. He can pinch run. He can play the middle of the infield. And he can fill in in the outfield, which he did in Class AAA. But mostly it was because Maxy (Justin Maxwell -- the other consideration for promotion) is a right-handed bat and we wanted a left-handed bat. We didn't want to go Padilla, Morse and another right-handed bat. This gives Jim the flexibility of a left-handed hitter."

* Technically, by the way, Orr is not a bench player for this particular game. He's starting at second. Gonzalez is at short. Cristian Guzman was scratched from the lineup because of bunions. (This is an ongoing issue with him; not the first time he's been bunionized.) "It's pretty tender looking," Jim Riggleman said. "It's been bothering him for three or four days. But we need to let that calm down a bit."

Now, the lineups:

Washington

Harris - 8
Orr - 4
Zimmerman - 5
Dunn - 3
Willingham - 7
Dukes - 9
Bard - 2
Gonzalez - 6
Lannan - 1

St. Louis

Lugo - 4
Ryan - 6
Pujols - 3
Holliday - 7
Ludwick - 9
DeRosa - 5
Molina - 2
Rasmus - 8
Smoltz - 1

By Chico Harlan  |  August 28, 2009; 7:06 PM ET
 
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Next: Cards 3, Nats 2

Comments

former nats SS ron hansen is being interviewed on MASN. remember seeing him play at DC stadium when he was slightly over the hill.

Posted by: surly_w | August 28, 2009 7:42 PM | Report abuse

bunionized - The effect that your starting SS's snarly feet have on a teams' chances to avoid 100 losses.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 7:44 PM | Report abuse

@NN: I did not start it, I only authored the post-script. Besides, what else could I do after your "saucy" quote?

Posted by: BinM

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

No, no. I meant periculum started it. It felt like he and i were dominating the Orr arguing. Which WAS ridiculous. But I couldn't stop.

And periculum, before you get bent out of shape, I was totally kidding about you starting it. Even though you did.

Okay, really. I'm kidding.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 28, 2009 7:49 PM | Report abuse

Let us pray for Guz's bunions!

Sec 204 Row H Seat 7

Posted by: ehardwick | August 28, 2009 7:50 PM | Report abuse

we pray for his family and his feet.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 28, 2009 7:51 PM | Report abuse

I trust that he is not the sole provider for them.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 28, 2009 7:57 PM | Report abuse

surly: Was gonna be a smart guy, but just looked him up, and he actually had a couple of good years (1960 w/BAL [AL-ROY!] & 1964-65 w/CWS).

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Guess all of the Snydermen fans have migrated to watch that game.

Posted by: leetee1955 | August 28, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse

@1a1: 2-minute penalty for a bad pun. Go to the box, hang head, feel shame.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 8:04 PM | Report abuse

"And periculum, before you get bent out of shape, I was totally kidding about you starting it. Even though you did.

Okay, really. I'm kidding.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 28, 2009"

It doesn't matter ... s'imagini non fa niente.

I think Orr batting second is entirely silly ... Riggleman must like the guy or owe the guy. Left handed or not. I'd rather see Leonard Davis.

Of course I think Harris at second and Norris Hopper in center would be ideal ... but that's just me. Hopper looks like the closest thing to a one-to-one replacement for Morgan. Yes he has a right handed bat but with Harris at second ...

I don't know what they are thinking but I guess they are going to make some mistakes ... like promising Dmitri Young the 40-man.

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 8:04 PM | Report abuse

BinM

hansen had a bad back by the time the senators traded tim cullen to the white sox for him. ironically, he was traded back to chicago for cullen about a week after he pulled an unassisted TP against the indians and hiot a grand slam against detroit. the '68 nats were a mess on the field (last in the 10-team AL at 65-96) and in the front office (the team was sold to bob short that winter)>

Posted by: surly_w | August 28, 2009 8:05 PM | Report abuse

BTW, NN, BinM,

As I recall one of Hemingway's greatest classics centered on a very detail oriented baseball fan who happened to be a Cuban fisherman.

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 8:08 PM | Report abuse

Five solid minutes of Justin Maxwell highlights on MASN pre-game show tonight. I can just imagine the main posters on this board (I'm talking about you, periculum, but you're hardly alone) hyperventilating right now.

Posted by: jdschulz50 | August 28, 2009 8:12 PM | Report abuse

surly:

I remember reading about the unassisted TP, and also recall the sale of the team to Short (the beginning of the end for the Senators ver 2.0). I was just a pup living in Utah, but loving & living for baseball.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 8:14 PM | Report abuse

No mORRe.

ORR Else?

Very mean reporting. But I hope he doesn't come up in an important situation, say bases loaded, one out.

August 2, 2008 “When Pete Orr is asked to pinch hit with the bases loaded and the game tied in the seventh inning, it can only mean one thing: The manager has run out of options. Orr's four years in the majors can best be described as RBI-challenged. "We were short," Acta said. "It was him and Nieves, and Nieves is the last catcher, so we didn't want to take a chance." 2B Brandon Phillips, who booted a groundball for one of Cincinnati's three errors, called the Nationals Park infield "the worst in the National League." LF Elijah Dukes was scratched from the Nationals lineup after arriving late for pregame. He entered in the sixth inning and hit himself in the leg with the bat while grounding out in the eighth.”

Posted by: nova_g_man | August 28, 2009 8:15 PM | Report abuse

Hitting for the cycle!!!

Posted by: nova_g_man | August 28, 2009 8:17 PM | Report abuse

nova

Orr not?

Posted by: leetee1955 | August 28, 2009 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Hm. Orr stole second and reached third on the error.

I'm just saying.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 28, 2009 8:20 PM | Report abuse

Single by Orr - Welcome back to the majors for the Nationals' favorite Canadien.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 8:21 PM | Report abuse

okay, seriously. I'll stop. I don't really care one way or another about Orr. I just liked the guy last year.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 28, 2009 8:21 PM | Report abuse

If Guzman were in they would have 5 lefties and 3 righties against Smoltz. As it is because of Guz's big toe issues there are 4.

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 8:24 PM | Report abuse

@nova_g: Assessed a double-minor for back-to-back word play. 1a1, you're out of the box - nova, take a seat, hang head, feel shame.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 8:26 PM | Report abuse

@NN: I respect Orr, because he sacrificed a chance to play for Canada in the WBC to try & make the Nationals' 25-man roster. At the time, I questioned his choice - this might be his "pay it forward" moment.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 8:33 PM | Report abuse

Not a good start for Lannan. A double and a walk ...

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Here comes the bullpen ...

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 8:43 PM | Report abuse

Nice comeback by Lannan. But I'm afraid we're swinging at blanks from Smoltz all night.

Posted by: jdschulz50 | August 28, 2009 8:44 PM | Report abuse

So do you not get an RBI if you hit into a double play or fielder's choice, even if it scores a run?

Posted by: cdstej | August 28, 2009 8:45 PM | Report abuse

If our pitcher fields a bunt and Orr is covering first, I bet he tries to catch the throw.

Posted by: poncedeleroy | August 28, 2009 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Strange to see Smolz as anything but a Brave.

Posted by: poncedeleroy | August 28, 2009 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Man, I'm excited that Rauch is in town!

It'd be nice to see him spark a good homestand for the Twinkies.

Posted by: JohninMpls | August 28, 2009 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Attaboy, Pete! Sac fly and an RBI.

Posted by: JohninMpls | August 28, 2009 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Tony Plush would've been safe.

Posted by: JohninMpls | August 28, 2009 8:57 PM | Report abuse

hehe, thanks for taking over for me, nova.

JiM, how do you manage to keep getting ex-Nats to your town?

---

@1a1: 2-minute penalty for a bad pun. Go to the box, hang head, feel shame.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 8:04 PM

@nova_g: Assessed a double-minor for back-to-back word play. 1a1, you're out of the box - nova, take a seat, hang head, feel shame.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 8:26 PM

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 28, 2009 9:00 PM | Report abuse

John: Good luck with the Wookie in MIN. No, really.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Dukes:

This pitch is called a slider. Get used to it. You're going to be seeing it the rest of your big league career. Which, if you cannot learn to hit it, will not last much longer.

Posted by: jdschulz50 | August 28, 2009 9:11 PM | Report abuse

That is a Johnson-worthy 'stache at short, my friends. That is all.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 28, 2009 9:14 PM | Report abuse

Let us pray for Guz's bunions!

Sec 204 Row H Seat 7

Don't we need to know the patron saint of bunions?

Posted by: baltova1 | August 28, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

From the sin bin:

I'm shORR he's a great guy.

Was just bummed about losing mORRgan.

Game misconduct?

Posted by: nova_g_man | August 28, 2009 9:25 PM | Report abuse

JiM, how do you manage to keep getting ex-Nats to your town?
Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 28, 2009 9:00 PM
------------------------
Notice how they pass through AZ first? It's called player laundering.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 9:26 PM | Report abuse

@nova: Yup - yORR outta here! Sorry, couldn't resist - 10 minute major, called on myself. Going to box, hanging head (to cover snicker), feeling shame.

Posted by: BinM | August 28, 2009 9:31 PM | Report abuse

WHere is Rob Dibble tonight? Did they mention why he is absent at the beginning of the broadcast?

Posted by: benbohn | August 28, 2009 9:33 PM | Report abuse

benbohn, just sounded like a vacation when they mentioned it the other night.

Posted by: baltova1 | August 28, 2009 9:35 PM | Report abuse

Bill Raftery on Christian Guzman...

-Bunions!

Posted by: cabraman | August 28, 2009 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Knight is so much easier to listen to than Rob "All they have to do is bear down and throw inside and concentrate and everything will work out fine. There is a lot of talent on this team. This is not a last place team. They are playing like a last place team but they aren't trying hard enough" Dibble.

Tonight is like the feeling you get when you stop banging your head against the wall. It feels so good.

Posted by: jdschulz50 | August 28, 2009 10:21 PM | Report abuse

Dukes looks pretty hot tonight.

Posted by: twinbrook | August 28, 2009 10:22 PM | Report abuse

wow, this is a great game.

baseball must be like giving birth because i don't really remember the pain of the first half.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 28, 2009 10:27 PM | Report abuse

FWIWOf course Carpy made two mistakes earlier talking about Red Schoendienst. 1) He did not win multiple world series as a Milwaukee Brave. They only won one in 1957. 2) Managing the Cardinals he likewise only won one series, 1967. Carpy said he won it in 1964, but he didn't start managing the Cardinals until 1965. Johnny Keane won it in 1964 (and was promptly fired).

Posted by: twinbrook | August 28, 2009 10:28 PM | Report abuse

crap. i had to say something, didn't i?

Posted by: NatsNut | August 28, 2009 10:28 PM | Report abuse

S**T!

Posted by: twinbrook | August 28, 2009 10:29 PM | Report abuse

Bergmann won't make it to Viera. He's going to get traded ... you watch.

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 10:30 PM | Report abuse

well, if you're going to hang a slider in the bottom of the ninth of a 2-2 game, it might as well be to Albert Pujols, I guess.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 28, 2009 10:31 PM | Report abuse

Peri, I'll give you even money they cut him.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 28, 2009 10:32 PM | Report abuse

Well, let's see how they rag on the pitchers for their bad pitch selection. They never mention that maybe the catchers are calling the wrong pitches. They never mention that when your pitchers and catchers consistently call the wrong pitches, then it's up to the manager or the pitching coach to do it from the dugout. Other teams do it that way. All season long the on air personalities have just lit into the pitchers for poor pitch selection. No responsibility for the catcher, the manager, or the pitching coach.

Posted by: poncedeleroy | August 28, 2009 10:32 PM | Report abuse

Sorry to say that I called that one after Bergmann's first pitch to Pooholes. Nice to see Lannan back in good form, anyway.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 28, 2009 10:33 PM | Report abuse

I miss Dibbs.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 28, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

LOL @NatsNut

Sob/cry at the ending of this game.

Posted by: JennX_ | August 28, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Seriously, two pitches up in his face, like Albert Effing Pujols is going to be intimidated?? by Jason Bergmann? I don't THINK SO. If you're going to be afraid to pitch to anyone, this is the guy.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 28, 2009 10:36 PM | Report abuse

Ponce, WADR, what, are you kidding me?? Dibble has been ranting all year about the pitchers calling their game, not the catchers. Paraphrasing: It ain't the *catcher* who's going to Syracuse if they light you up, so if you don't want to throw it, shake him off!

**********
Well, let's see how they rag on the pitchers for their bad pitch selection. They never mention that maybe the catchers are calling the wrong pitches. They never mention that when your pitchers and catchers consistently call the wrong pitches, then it's up to the manager or the pitching coach to do it from the dugout. Other teams do it that way. All season long the on air personalities have just lit into the pitchers for poor pitch selection. No responsibility for the catcher, the manager, or the pitching coach.

Posted by: poncedeleroy | August 28, 2009 10:32 PM

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 28, 2009 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Yeah,yeah,yeah i know you never put the winning run on base but in this case.........hindsight is.......... we miss Nyjer already and oh yeah if you fans remember it was Khalil Greene's grand slam off of the Chief in 05 late in the season in San Diego to snuff out any playoff hopes, yeah you know i hate that kid.

Posted by: dargregmag | August 28, 2009 10:41 PM | Report abuse

Yeah,yeah,yeah i know you never put the winning run on base but in this case.........hindsight is.......... we miss Nyjer already and oh yeah if you fans remember it was Khalil Greene's grand slam off of the Chief in 05 late in the season in San Diego to snuff out any playoff hopes, yeah you know i hate that kid.

Posted by: dargregmag | August 28, 2009 10:41 PM | Report abuse

and NN, if you don't quit this putting the mickey on the team stuff, we're going to make you buy the first Bryce Harper jersey.

And WEAR it. With shoes that don't match.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 28, 2009 10:41 PM | Report abuse

ahhh grampsmag don't remind me I had almost forgotten I was holding onto the sweet memories of June.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 28, 2009 10:43 PM | Report abuse

Does Pujols have to leave a tip for that room service home run pitch Bergy served up? Same old 2-and-11 Bergy, just the abbreviated bullpen version. Tell you what, Bergy is NOT in the 2010 plans.

Posted by: jdschulz50 | August 28, 2009 10:43 PM | Report abuse

I will say, however, that St. Louis does have the best fans, no contest, in MLB.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 28, 2009 10:44 PM | Report abuse

Bergmann's wife had better get the kids all packed up and ready to go ... wonder if Bergmann got a degree / training for when his baseball hobby was over?

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 10:46 PM | Report abuse

okay, sec3. (hanging head)

Posted by: NatsNut | August 28, 2009 10:47 PM | Report abuse

Why Bergy is going to love SYR next year:

Bergmann has allowed seven runs in 2 1-3 innings in his last five appearances.

Posted by: jdschulz50 | August 28, 2009 10:55 PM | Report abuse

Wow, sec3 is a harda$$ tonite.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 28, 2009 10:56 PM | Report abuse

Oops, did I just type that out loud?

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 28, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Turtles. Well, at least the right pitcher got the loss.

Posted by: Nats_Lady | August 28, 2009 11:04 PM | Report abuse

Bergy won't be in Syracuse ... he's joining gascanrahan in Pittsburgh.

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 11:04 PM | Report abuse

I'm sure they will accommodate us with yet another trade.

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 11:06 PM | Report abuse

Easy second guess here, and I know conventional wisdom is to save the closer until you get the lead, but didn't it feel like the game was going to be decided by Pujols? I'd rather see MacDougal face Pujols there than hope he'll have a chance to get a save in extra innings. Oh well.

Posted by: baltova1 | August 28, 2009 11:07 PM | Report abuse

Do they have another Nyjer?

Posted by: Nats_Lady | August 28, 2009 11:10 PM | Report abuse

"Easy second guess here, and I know conventional wisdom is to save the closer "

He pitched a 5 out save the night before. Clippard pitched, Rivera. Only other option probably was Burnett. Sosa, Villone: Inouye.

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 11:13 PM | Report abuse

"Do they have another Nyjer?

Posted by: Nats_Lady | August 28, 2009"

They have a McCutheon. Potential to be a prototypical DiMaggio/Mantle CF versus the prototypical Tris Speaker CF or Nyjer Morgan.

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Yeah. In my dreams we are getting McCutcheon for Bergmann.

Posted by: Nats_Lady | August 28, 2009 11:16 PM | Report abuse

"Yeah. In my dreams we are getting McCutcheon for Bergmann.

Posted by: Nats_Lady | August 28, 2009"

You'd be surprised what the Nats have to offer. A Dukes along with a Bergmann and say a Balester just might be enough. Even the Pirates fans who frequent this blog admit that Pirate's management might go for it.

Posted by: periculum | August 28, 2009 11:20 PM | Report abuse

Ok, hardass it is. no more mr. nice guy.

although, yanno, I think I'd make that 3-for-1. Heck, I'd even throw in Pete Orr.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 28, 2009 11:25 PM | Report abuse

McCutcheon, Morgan, Willingham --- I could live with that.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 28, 2009 11:29 PM | Report abuse

letterman's swing analyzed:

http://tinyurl.com/mf42ww

Posted by: NatsNut | August 28, 2009 11:30 PM | Report abuse

Elijah looked great tonight--fielding and hitting. He looked as good as he probably ever could, and he is STILL no McCutcheon.

Dream on, perc, and let me have some of whatever you are smoking.

Posted by: Nats_Lady | August 28, 2009 11:32 PM | Report abuse

Sofa, that's why it's called *fantasy* baseball.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
McCutcheon, Morgan, Willingham --- I could live with that.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 28, 2009 11:29 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Nats_Lady | August 28, 2009 11:39 PM | Report abuse

Dukes, Gooziem, Bally Star and Bergy for McCutchen.

If Rizzo can pull that one off, he beats GM Tom Jefferson and his swap for the Louisiana Purchase.

Posted by: jdschulz50 | August 28, 2009 11:53 PM | Report abuse

Wow, you weren't kidding. Trade Pete Orr, and so soon after our loss of TP? Too cruel.

---

Ok, hardass it is. no more mr. nice guy.

although, yanno, I think I'd make that 3-for-1. Heck, I'd even throw in Pete Orr.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | A

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 29, 2009 6:42 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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