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Livan Hernandez's high pitch count not a major concern

Among the first questions for Manager Jim Riggleman after a 6-3 victory over Atlanta tonight at Nationals Park had to do with Livan Hernandez's high pitch count.

Riggleman didn't seem particularly bothered Hernandez threw 123 pitches, including 41 in the first inning. The important number was Hernandez's fourth victory in five decisions that improved the Nationals to 14-12, one game out of first place in the NL East.

Hernandez worked 5 1/3 innings and gave up five hits, two runs -- one earned -- and walked five. He threw 71 pitches for strikes.

"Yeah, he was using up a lot of pitches, but Livan pitches like that," Riggleman said. "It's how he wants to approach a hitter, maybe somebody he wants to pitch around and go get the next guy, tries to find out what's working in and out and was just missing a little bit tonight. It caused the pitch count to go up.

"We made things a little tough for him in the first inning. We put him in a situation where he had to throw a few more than we would have liked. He rebounded though. He's the one guy on the staff that I'm not too concerned about the pitch count. Believe it or not he barely broke a sweat in that, whatever it was, 200 pitches he threw there."

By Gene Wang  |  May 4, 2010; 11:10 PM ET
Categories:  Livan Hernandez  
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Worrying about Livan Hernandez throwing too many pitches is like worrying the Atlantic Ocean is going to run out of water.

Posted by: Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me | May 5, 2010 12:00 AM | Report abuse

And yet I worry when Riggleman doesn't worry about pitch counts...

Posted by: SorenKierkegaard | May 5, 2010 12:05 AM | Report abuse

I think that it is unlikely that the Nats are worried about Livo's future, even with this great start. I know he wants to pitch another 5 years, but his history suggests he isn't likely to get that chance. Of course I would like him to be an ace for the staff the next 5 seasons, but it is more likely that he will have his great start, and then fade the rest of the year.

Prove me wrong, Livo. Win at least 15 this year.


Posted by: kevincostello | May 5, 2010 5:21 AM | Report abuse

Worry about Livo? Not at all.

I'm worried about Lannan's sore elbow (and dumb pitch selections) and the threat that Marquis could return.

Posted by: JohnRDC | May 5, 2010 8:47 AM | Report abuse

JohnRDC; Be very afraid, Marquis claims to be on the fast track to coming back. He has been throwing off the mound the past few days. He claims he rather know now if he needs surgery to repair what ails him or get back in there now.

Jason please take your time, no need to rush things. Team is doing fine and you are still scheduled to get paid.

Posted by: TippyCanoe | May 5, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Jason should have taken cue from Stammen and gotten his elbow surgically cleaned out immediately. He'd be way ahead of the curve for returning and redeeming himself from his 20+ ERA

Posted by: burnedonce | May 5, 2010 11:03 AM | Report abuse

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