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Game 86 discussion thread: Padres at Nationals

The Nationals will try for their first sweep of San Diego since 2003, when the franchise was still in Montreal. It's been nearly a month since Washington has swept a series. The last time it did was June 8-10 against Pittsburgh. A sweep against the Padres, however, would be much more impressive. The Pirates have the fewest wins (30) in the National League. The Padres, meantime, are 49-35, in first place in the NL West and trying to avoid just their second three-game losing streak this season.

The Nationals have 13 runs and 20 hits over the past two games against San Diego. Ryan Zimmerman had a pair of homers on Tuesday, including the game-ender, in a 6-5 win. In last night's 7-6 victory, Adam Dunn became the second Nationals player to hit three homers in a game. Will it be Josh Willingham's turn tonight?

Rookie Luis Atilano (6-5, 4.72 ERA) makes his 15th start of the season for the Nationals. Mat Latos (9-4, 2.62) will start for San Diego.

Talk about the game right here, and check back after the final out for updates.

By Gene Wang  |  July 8, 2010; 7:00 PM ET
Categories:  Adam Dunn , Josh Willingham , Ryan Zimmerman  
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Next: Nationals look to Stephen Strasburg for another lift


This is the 7th consecutive game the Nationals have given up at least one run in the first inning....

Something has to be done to address this..You can't start games automatically behind after the first inning and expect to win many of those games...With this being the 7th game this means every starter has had a crack at pitching a scoreless first inning but failed...Now we are into each starters' second crack at it...

Posted by: pentagon40 | July 8, 2010 7:24 PM | Report abuse

Can some one tell me if Martis, one of the starters from last year who was sent down,is still in the Nationals farm system and if so why hasn't he been called up...he did well last year I thought...

Posted by: pentagon40 | July 8, 2010 7:28 PM | Report abuse

Martis is in syracuse pitching and he is somewhere around .500 with an era around 4. I guess there were starters like atilano this year that impressed more that he did at the lower level.

Posted by: mossisoldbutstillgood | July 8, 2010 7:42 PM | Report abuse

@pentagon40: Yes, Martis is still in the Nationals system, and still on the 40-man roster. He's currently the #4SP for SYR, and Atilano is the rough equivalent for this years' Nationals team.

Posted by: BinM | July 8, 2010 7:48 PM | Report abuse

A solo HR to the opposing pitcher - WTF?

Posted by: BinM | July 8, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

I think we're going to chalk up a curly L tonight, but the little kid swapping 4 balls with the Padres pen so Latos can have his homer souvenir still reminds me why I love this sport.

Posted by: Kev29 | July 8, 2010 8:12 PM | Report abuse

I thought Strasburg was pitching every 5 days...him pitching tomorrow means he last pitched July 4 Sunday....he didn't pitch on the 4th....I thought he was due to pitch tonite instead of Attilano....

Posted by: pentagon40 | July 8, 2010 8:12 PM | Report abuse

Hope Atilano can forward his mail to Syracuse.

Posted by: SCNatsFan | July 8, 2010 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Atilano can actually get Gonzalez out - Hurray, Atilano; Hurray, Nationals; Hurray, beer (while I'm dishing out hurrays).

Posted by: BinM | July 8, 2010 8:21 PM | Report abuse

This game seems to be slowly slipping away.

Posted by: marathoner | July 8, 2010 8:34 PM | Report abuse

Terrible throw to the plate by where near close...I understand he is the future at SS but I still like Guzman there...Desmond's throws and judgment are killing the team...I realize he has to grow but at what expense...Maybe I;m missing something.....

Posted by: pentagon40 | July 8, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

Can't we get an opposing P out? I have done no looking at actual stats, but for the season I'd guess .260, 5HR, 25 RBI, 35 Rs, 20 BB; stats that put a certain CF to shame. And whoever put the scouting report together on Denorfia -- hope no drafting was done based on his analysis.

Posted by: grclarkdc1 | July 8, 2010 8:39 PM | Report abuse

The throw by Kennedy to home plate tells us why AK should be glued to the bench they had Torrelba doa at the plate and Kennedy throws the ball wide,actually almost threw it away and Riggleman trying to defend his reasoning for playing AK is just pathetic.

Posted by: dargregmag | July 8, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

Lol one person says Kennedy threw home the other says Desmond threw home. It was Kennedy and I agree with dargreg.

Posted by: amorris525 | July 8, 2010 8:49 PM | Report abuse

Terrible throw to the plate by Alberto where near close...I understand he's literally been glued to the bench.

Posted by: Sunderland | July 8, 2010 8:54 PM | Report abuse

IMO even if it was Strasburg throwing home they weren't getting the runner after going to second.

Posted by: marathoner | July 8, 2010 9:20 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: dargregmag | July 8, 2010 9:28 PM | Report abuse

We were fortunate to take the first two games...but this one could have been more competitive...We are hurting for starters...don't care who is coming up in the future...we need some consistency now...I would think one more time thru the rotation after the ALL Star game and management should have a pretty good idea what starters need to be sent elsewhere...

Of course when the two in rehab now are ready that will take care of 2 slots...

Posted by: pentagon40 | July 8, 2010 9:28 PM | Report abuse

Good ol' Bill Bray is back pitching for the Reds, a vestige of one of the more (in)famous trades in Nats' history. Someone tell me who we really ended up with after it was all said and done: We traded Lopez for Bonifacio, for whom we got Olson and Willingham. There were some other guys in there, too.

BTW Kennedy, aka Desmond, had no play at the plate tonight. A tailor made double play ball was, again, not to be.

Posted by: paulkp | July 8, 2010 10:00 PM | Report abuse

If they are trying to showcase Kennedy, that didn't go too well.

Ya can't win em all. At least this was a fun series to watch. Have tix for Saturday. Will miss Strasmas :( but hope the June doldrums are gone for good and look forward to a fun time.

Posted by: NatsFly | July 8, 2010 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Completely off topic, but should have been the topic here in Washington, instead of that other guy going to Miami, was the NEED to sign Adam Dunn to an extension. The guy hits 3 home runs in one game and all I hear about ALL day is about Lebron James' whereabouts. Rizzo and Kasten need to get the job Dunn and lock Dunn AND Willingham up. They are a solid part of the core of our line-up and good character guys. The kind of guys this team needs to keep as a part of the foundation. What does it say to Nationals fans and free agents that come here and play? If Dunn and Willingham are sent elsewhere or not extended, then this organization is basically saying be prepared for you home team to look more like the KC Royals.

I was watching Dunn's 3 home run game and saw Rizzo and Lerner in the backround. It was right in front of their faces. I'm mostly ecstatic with Rizzo's performance since taking over the team, but extremely annoyed with the way these two guys have been dealt with. I've waited for baseball to come back here a long time and am not ready for such a giant step backward as far as I'm concerned. Maybe they're just seeing what they can get, and if it's an offer one couldn't refuse maybe it would be easier to swallow. But then again, leaves a gaping hole. You can't replace those two guys right now, especially Dunn. With the exception of Strasburg, we have an entirely new rotation coming back to us after the All Star break. Why not make a strong push? Why not see where this team as a whole finally is with all the pieces in place? What's going on with Wang? Are we looking at a rotation with real big leaguers and top notch prospects like Zimmermann, Detwiler, Marquis, and Wang coming back? Let's find out who's going to cut it and create a strong 5 man rotation. There should be a few leftovers that would be good trade bait. Keep a couple in case of injury. Atilano was a nice surprise at the beginning of the year, but he's been scouted and hasn't had great location in well over a month. Stammen another bubble guy, along with JD Martin, who has pitched well and finally gotten some run support. A rotation with 3 guys that are 5th spot starters at best is not a way to be competitive. Then again, neither is letting go the core of the offense.

We need a RF. Bernadina has proven he belongs, but at best should be the team's 4th outfielder. We need one more big bat and RF is where that production needs to come from. I could go on all night. My apologies for a pent up rant of well over a week, but I wanted to know if anyone at all was aware of the urgency of this as I feel is crucial for the core of your team, but your fan base. Because as long as I've followed the team since before they got here, and the days of the stadium cam... I'm not going to hang around if this team takes any more steps in the wrong direction.

Posted by: NatsFD11 | July 9, 2010 12:00 AM | Report abuse

I'm with you, NatsFD11, on the impatience. Adam Dunn is 30 year old. Why on earth would anybody say he can't be part of the Nats' future??? Is there anybody here who wouldn't like (at a minimum) three more prime years from this man?

Even if, God forbid, the Nats don't contend for the next three years, at least we'll have somebody who with one swing could be a game changer. (Gosh, even in my days in the wilderness, I had Dave Kingman!)

Yes, the second half could look better with a pitching staff that is more than what the Nats have now, but it's likely too late to hope for the playoffs this year. My goal is still for the Nats to finish above .500. Solid improvement helps build the fan base. Throwing in the towel does not.

I don't want to wait 3 years more for this team to compete. Tampa Bay, in the toughest (purportedly) division did it quickly. Nats fans should settle for no less.

Posted by: nats24 | July 9, 2010 1:07 AM | Report abuse

Well, same ol' Nats that we luv so much. Can't pitch. And when there are men on base, the usual DP. Letting a foul pop up fall behind you. Nine stikeouts with the Home Run king making three of them.
Ed Brinkman throwing wide to the plate (that was a good one! LOL).
Having opposing pitchers hit singles and home runs.
Why can't the Nats win a second series this year? They play two AWESOME games then fall flat on their collective faces.

Yes the team is better than last year. I drank the kool aid laced with bourbon in April. Now the bourbon is laced with maalox....
With the calvary coming after the All Star break, will the calvary get any run support?

Sigh....Oh, Well...GO NATS!!!! I still Luv 'em.

Posted by: M20832 | July 9, 2010 8:00 AM | Report abuse

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