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Updates: Nationals at Cardinals

I'll provide periodic updates. ...

3:50: The Nationals are 0-8 in the Grapefruit League. The Cardinals beat them, 6-4. Jason Bergmann threw a scoreless eighth. Eric Bruntlett and Chris Duncan struck out to end it.

3:27: For the third time in his first three appearances, Matt Capps could not execute a clean inning. He allowed two runs after John Jay led off with a triple and Allen Craig followed with a double. Capps has allowed five earned runs in three innings. In the eighth, Justin Maxwell blasted his first homer of the spring on an 0-2 pitch. It's 6-4 Cardinals.

3:09: Just back from speaking with Garrett Mock. The Nationals trail, 4-3, after Chris Duncan struck out with runners on first and third to end the top of the seventh. Mock, who threw 48 pitches in three innings, felt like he needs to get ahead of more batters. The home run pitch was a 2-0 changeup, which he "babied" a little bit. "His eyes lit up like a Christmas tree," Mock said.

2:36: The Nationals have scored three runs in the sixth off Ryan Franklin to close the gap to 4-3. Pete Orr led off with a single. Willie Harris followed with a triple into the rightfield corner, and Ian Desmond followed that triple with a triple of his own to left-center. Man, he is exciting. He slid under a tag to beat a relay throw. After a Chris Duncan RBI groundout, Adam Dunn is batting with the bases empty.

2:14: J.D. Martin got touched for two runs in his first inning. He allowed back-to-back doubles to Nick Stavinoha and Colby Rasmus for one run. Ryan Ludwick reached on a throwing error by Pete Orr. Yadier Molina grounded into a 4-6-3 double play, which scored Rasmus. The Nationals trail 4-0 after four innings.

2:06: The Nationals remain scoreless after a 1-2-3 three fourth against Brad Penny, who allowed only the single to Adam Dunn in four innings. Garrett Mock got through the third with minimal damage, allowing only a single to Skip Schumaker. Felipe Lopez helped him by getting picked off at second base in the first and, in the third, being caught stealing second by Ivan Rodriguez. Mock is done after three having allowed two runs on five hits and struck out three. J.D. Martin is taking over. Through 3 1/2 innings, the Nationals trail 2-0.

1:43: Through two innings, the Nationals trail, 2-0. Garrett Mock has allowed four hits, one of them an infield swinging bunt by old friend Felipe Lopez and one a two-run home run by Allen Craig. Against Brad Penny, the Nationals have one hit, a single by Adam Dunn. Mike Morse and Justin Maxwell each struck out.

By Adam Kilgore  |  March 10, 2010; 1:43 PM ET
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Next: Does Ivan Rodriguez throw harder than Garrett Mock?


Adam, seems like the Nats are making *much* less fundamental mistakes than other teams, let alone in past years.

Posted by: AnonymousSources | March 10, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Darn, even the Cardinals station isn't broadcasting this one, so I can't even get it on

Posted by: nats24 | March 10, 2010 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Ugh! Pre-season optimism slowly ... fading ... away ...

Posted by: tailwagger | March 10, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Is Strasburg available today? I'm as "it's only spring training" as the next guy, but I don't think the Nats have even had a lead this year since the first game.

Posted by: Bethesdangit | March 10, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

You're right, they are looking much better fundamentally as they look to go 0-8, remaining the only winless team in Spring Training.

I am 100% behind the idea that spring wins and losses are meaningless, but c'mon, our pitchers aren't this bad. At some point, they have to start getting batters out.

Posted by: rushfari | March 10, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

I agree with the other comments and I hope the pitchers inhale some of that optimism.

Thanks for the updates.

Posted by: samantha7 | March 10, 2010 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Well, Lannan and Marquis aren't this bad. The rest, it's hard to be sure. We're all hoping for the young guys to take the next step, but on paper we still have arguably the worst starting five in the league.

Posted by: BobLHead | March 10, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

* Rizzo could care less about the Nationals poor spring start. "Spring training is spring training," he said. "We shouldn't even keep score or keep stats, as far as I'm concerned. I'm not concerned whatsoever with our won-loss record or with the performance of our players."

Umm... the won-loss record SHOULD be concerning because it reflects on the POOR performance of our players. How can you not be concerned that you've lost EVERY game by substantial margins?

Posted by: trezmartin | March 10, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Methinks Mr. Desmond is not at all interested in seeing Syracuse again, no matter what it takes.

Posted by: natinbeantown | March 10, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

The FLop hat trick:

1 hit, 1 caught stealing, 1 pickoff.

Posted by: BobLHead | March 10, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Right, it's not the W/L record. If the Nats had scored 20 runs each game, they would be undefeated so far. But the pitching would still be cause for concern.

It is only March, but if they were pitching well, the team would be touting it as meaningful.

Posted by: KenNat | March 10, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Funny BobL.

Posted by: PattyinSJ | March 10, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Good to see FLop finally helping out the Nats. Maybe he could strike out with runners on and the game on the line for old time sakes.

Posted by: lj1126 | March 10, 2010 3:35 PM | Report abuse

panic button <>

Posted by: cokedispatch | March 10, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

I am bumming about Capps so far.

Posted by: DKSW | March 10, 2010 3:56 PM | Report abuse

so storen and strasburg probably are the two best pitchers we have starting and relieving. i don't think anyone is surprised.

Posted by: longterm | March 10, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

I know I may have missed a similar question/answer, but does anyone know what the record for either consecutive losses and losses to start the preseason are? Has an MLB team ever gone winless in spring training?

Posted by: mvm2 | March 10, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

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