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Does Ivan Rodriguez throw harder than Garrett Mock?

As Garrett Mock finished speaking with reporters after his outing -- two runs on five hits in three innings -- he pointed a few lockers over, at this catcher.

"By the way," Mock said. "Pudge Rodriguez throws harder than I do."

It was hard to tell if Mock, capable of throwing in the mid-90s, was kidding or not. He was referring to the play when Rodriguez noticed Felipe Lopez was drifting a little too far off second base in the first inning. Rodriguez caught a pitch and rifled it to second, where Willie Harris slapped a tag on Lopez. Mock said the ball took less time traveling from home to second than his pitch from the mound to home.

"I couldn't do anything but laugh," Mock said. "It felt like a helicopter flying right over my ear."

Rodriguez also threw out Lopez when he tried to steal second in the third, proving two things we already knew: Lopez is a bad base runner, and Rodriguez, even in his 18th season, has a cannon for an arm.

"I'm always ready all the time to throw the ball to the bases," Rodriguez said. "The second one, it was a good throw. It's earlier in spring training. I don't want to throw hard. I moved my feet very nice, perfect. That's what I've been working on, and I put my feet in the right position there."

By Adam Kilgore  |  March 10, 2010; 3:37 PM ET
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Next: Wrapping up another spring loss for the Nationals


Atta boy, Pudge.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | March 10, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I remember when Pudge first came up and started picking unsuspecting guys off first from his knees after fishing pitches out of the dirt. It's good to have talent.

Posted by: BobLHead | March 10, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

With Jesus Flores continuing to have setbacks, the I Rod signing is looking like a much better idea.

Posted by: futbolclif | March 10, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Right on BobLHead. I'll never first seeing Pudge throwing guys out from his knees. I think he was 19. I loved watching Johnny Bench in his later years when I was young but I don't ever remember seeing Bench do that. Pudge changed the position. Can't believe he can still make those throws. Total badass.

Posted by: Avar | March 10, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

So Desmond and SS are the best players on the Nats if preseason is any indication. Neither figures to be on the opening day roster. Why is this smart?

Posted by: trezmartin | March 10, 2010 4:22 PM | Report abuse

I think Desmond will make the opening day roster... hopefully as the starting SS, but if not, as a "super utility" guy playing 4-6 games a week between middle infield and OF spots... but, hopefully even that is temporary and he is pushing for the starting gig at SS before too long.

Strasburg is destined for the minors, no doubt... but hopefully that will only before for a couple of months, too...

Posted by: Ghost7 | March 10, 2010 4:51 PM | Report abuse

This was a good news/bad news ST day. Good news: ST mailed today. Bad news ST 0-8.

Posted by: NatsFly | March 10, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

No matter how great Desmond plays, Guzman will stay at SS and bat 2nd. Why? Because he refuses to be "team first". Bat him 6th and he pouts and shuts down at the plate. Ask him to move to 2nd? He sulks and becomes an $8 million dollar clubhouse cancer. Another Bowden legacy that holds the club back. He damn well better hit .300 this season!

Posted by: 1stBaseCoach | March 10, 2010 5:35 PM | Report abuse

SS should not start on the big club because if he does there is a good chance he will throw his arm out and ruin his career like Wood and Prior.

I dont care if SS is the best rookie pitcher of all time. I want to see him retire as the best pitcher for a whole career of all time.

Starting SS in the majors is too nearsighted.

Posted by: peteywheatstraw | March 10, 2010 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Well said 1stbasecoach.
We don't have Kearns this year to block someone's progress so bring on, for another year, the Guzman.
The powers that be appear pathetically sad when it comes to evaluating talent.
Oh, wait, Desmond is a right fielder. Unrelated--weren't we near last in spring training the past two years. Nope not important, we have Marquis who gave up five runs his first time out and then there is Capps. Fortunately, they are not important to the team's success.
Jeeze, I have to stop having my two glasses of predinner wine. (and the one with the meal).

Posted by: jcampbell1 | March 10, 2010 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Heck, I just reread that. Even I had a hard time following the train of thought.

Posted by: jcampbell1 | March 10, 2010 6:30 PM | Report abuse

TY Flop for the help on the bases!

Posted by: ehay2k | March 11, 2010 8:07 AM | Report abuse

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