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Ivan Rodriguez's bad throw the result of a bad back

During their decisive, five-run rally in the fifth inning Monday, the Phillies took advantage of a poor throw by catcher Ivan Rodriguez. With one out, pitcher Cole Hamels put down a bunt that dribbled a few feet in front of the plate. Rodriguez pounced on the ball and rifled it to second base.

As Rodriguez threw, he felt a spasm on the right side of his upper back. He had felt a twinge before the game, but "I'm a guy, it's hard for me to take myself out of the lineup," Rodriguez said. The discomfort caused a low throw, and it skipped past shortstop Ian Desmond and into center field.

The back issue will not likely become a major problem; Rodriguez expects to play again Wednesday after getting a massage Monday night. In the course of the game, though, the play hurt the Nationals and Jason Marquis significantly.

Had Rodriguez opted to throw to first and get Hamels, the Phillies would have had a man on second with two outs. Instead, they had had two on with one out. Marquis would not record another out, and after the bunt the Phillies scored five runs off of him. Rodriguez believed the problem was not his decision, but rather the execution.

"I think I got a play at second base," Rodriguez said. "It could be a good thing, I go to first base, get two outs. But when you grow up in the American League, those things come instant - you got to go to second base in the American League. That's my mentality. I was ready to go to second base. If I threw the ball in the air, right there, it was an easy out. My arm was stiff and tight. It made that ball low."

By Adam Kilgore  |  April 12, 2010; 8:11 PM ET
 
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Comments

Seems to me you don't second guess the greatest defensive catcher in history about something like that. Even he makes an error sometimes, and it sounds like it was a mechanical thing. If we're lucky, we'll have the pleasure of seeing him do that play another dozen times this year and at least a couple of times it'll save a run.

Posted by: jonb5 | April 12, 2010 8:36 PM | Report abuse

38 year old catcher gets back spasms. First week of the season. Gonna be a problem all year.

Posted by: Brue | April 12, 2010 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Its chilly in April and May ... less of a problem later in the summer. Then its heat ... they need to be working with that man in Gaithersburg in his gym.

Posted by: periculum | April 12, 2010 9:03 PM | Report abuse

Jason Marquis is a very fragile pitcher. He gets rattled and boom, runs come in torrents.
Someday he will get it together but I have yet to see it while he has been in a Nationals uniform from March on.

We see as well that the Nats are a one punch team. They may get one or two scoring innings and hope that that is enough to carry them for the game.

Posted by: driley | April 12, 2010 9:05 PM | Report abuse

The back issue will not likely become a major problem; Rodriguez expects to play again Wednesday after getting a massage Monday night.

Hey...it worked for Da meat hook...

Something about a "release...."

Followed by a whole lot of "happy ending" jokes....

Ah, memories...

Posted by: TimDz | April 12, 2010 9:17 PM | Report abuse

It was a bad throw period i don't wanna hear about no back spasm's,you go to first and get the sure out, take the pressure off everybody including Marquis now,there's two out and Marquis is back in control. Lannan is supposed to pitch one of the two remaining games and his record is putrid against the Phils if i'm Riggleman i skip him and send Olsen to the hill and oh yeah give Bernadina a shot in RF let's win these next two, i'm sick of those smug-ass Phily fans.

Posted by: dargregmag | April 12, 2010 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Wish I could get a back massage after that game . . .

Posted by: lowcountry | April 12, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Is Pudge throwing out some not so subtle hints about the quality of play in the NL versus the AL? News flash: the Nats are severely overpaying you, so let's keep it to a minimum. Thanks.

Posted by: nervousnatsfan | April 12, 2010 9:58 PM | Report abuse

The story of Dmitri's magical release:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/05/01/AR2008050103267.html

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 12, 2010 10:29 PM | Report abuse

1a1: Thanks for the memories....signed, Bob Hope (I have OFFICIALLY dated myself..)

Posted by: TimDz | April 12, 2010 10:47 PM | Report abuse

Ah the joys of baseball, in less then 24 hours the faithful go from the cup being half to the cup being half empty. Here's to Wednesday cause we don't have top wait 7 days like that other sport to get refills!

Posted by: TippyCanoe | April 12, 2010 10:52 PM | Report abuse

Ah the joys of baseball, in less then 24 hours the faithful go from the cup being half to the cup being half empty. Here's to Wednesday cause we don't have top wait 7 days like that other sport to get refills!

Posted by: TippyCanoe | April 12, 2010 10:52 PM
_______________________________

If you're waitin' 7 days for refills, you're at the wrong friggin' bar...

Posted by: TimDz | April 12, 2010 11:00 PM | Report abuse

Ah the memories, JimBo, Meat-Hook, Cordero, Paul "I'm-Vaguely-Sorry" Lo Duca . . .

Posted by: Juan-John | April 12, 2010 11:07 PM | Report abuse

Glass still half full here. The umps basically took Marquis' game away by not calling strikes at the bottom of the zone--the sweet spot for any sinker ball pitcher. So when you have to throw down the middle to get strikes, guys like Utley (and Howard, etc.) will sit on those pitches. Had the home plate ump called a half-way decent game, Marquis goes much farther into this and the Nats win. I hope Nats fans give Schrieber (or whatever the Hell his name is) a load of cr@p next time he shows his Ugly Mug at Nats Stadium. What joke tonight's game was.

Posted by: thelonghaul | April 13, 2010 12:57 AM | Report abuse

You're welcome, TimDz. :-)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | April 13, 2010 8:07 AM | Report abuse

Marquis is a journeyman. That '09 All-Star hype is a disservice to him. He is a decent number 3 starter. Unfortunately the Nats have to bump him up to #2 where the opposition's pitchers will be (and have been) tougher to battle.

The bigger disappointment to me is not having Jesus Flores back. Pudge is 38. It is a long hot summer wearing the tools of ignorance.

Posted by: pryorcommitments | April 13, 2010 8:07 AM | Report abuse

It is easy to try to cast blame away from where it belongs and in this case the blame is squarely on the shoulders of one person, Jason Marquis, and his inability to get hitters out...don't try to blame Pudge, he made the right play which is an aggressive play, I wish others would play as aggeressively as he does.

Posted by: markfd | April 13, 2010 8:38 AM | Report abuse

Is Pudge throwing out some not so subtle hints about the quality of play in the NL versus the AL? News flash: the Nats are severely overpaying you, so let's keep it to a minimum. Thanks.

Posted by: nervousnatsfan | April 12, 2010 9:58 PM

What? A) He's contrasting the styles of play between the two leagues -and saying that it's customary to make the more aggressive move when facing a tougher lineup 1 through 9. B) He makes the league average for two seasons, big whoop. The Lerners don't overpay anyone - that's how they end up with the 24th 'highest' payroll in baseball. C) Congratulations on the Overreaction of the Day Award.

Posted by: Kev29 | April 13, 2010 8:59 AM | Report abuse

When the Nats win, the haters disappear. Not a word... When they lose, they're back in full swing--old catchers, mediocre pitchers, yada, yada, yada. Here is an old and true saying updated for you: If you don't have anything nice to say, stay off the computer.

Posted by: fpcsteve | April 13, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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