The Washington Nationals
Established June 11, 2004
August 24, 2005 Nats lose to Reds 6-2 The Nats are now 1 1/2 games behind houston and Philly in the wild card race. ESPN's Mike Golic (on this morning's Mike & Mike radio and TV show, said that the Nationals have little chance of making the gaining wildcard playoff spot. Fortunately, we consider the source and don't worry about it. Over the remainder of the season, the Nationals play 25 games at home and only 13 on the road. Homefield does have an advantage in baseball so let's see what we can do!
September 22, 2005 Let's Celebrate a fantastic year! No one expected the Nats to do nearly as well as they did so let's rejoice that we had a game, winning team and they should be even better next year. Even more so, let's celebrate the fact that we TROUNCED the Baltimore Orioles in our battle with our local rivals. The Big Bad Orioles were a major bust. Lots of big names, very pityful results. Hey Angelos, you got what you deserved, a high priced losing team. But as you said, "there are no real baseball fans in Washington", somehow the Nats will draw around 2.7 million and that will be more than the Orioles. I love it! (PS: the wild card race is over)
September 21, 2005 Ouch! The Nats lost to San Francisco 4-3 on a Moises Alou 3-run home run in the 9th off of Livan Hernandez (15-8, 3.93 ERA). We have lost 3 in a row now and things are starting to get desperate. The Nats need a long winning streak or else it is all over. Here is hoping.
September 17, 2005 Oh Baby! These Nats refuse to die. John Patterson (9-5, 2.35 ERA) is back and is as strong as ever in the 5-1 win over NL Western Division Leading San Diego. Patterson gave up a whole 3 hits and registered a complete game. If you keep winning, only good things will happen. Hector Corrasco (4-3, 2.14 ERA) has a pretty good ERA against San Diego in the past....0.72!!! Can he keep it up? We shall see.
September 15, 2005 Here come the Nationals! They beat the Mets last night 6-3 behind Esteban Loaiza who went 7 innings giving up 3 runs and 7 hits (11-10, 3.79 ERA). You want more good news? Tonight we start Livan (15-7, 3.83 ERA). We better win tonight because who knows who will start tomorrow. Nats are down to 3 behind in the Wild card race.
September 14, 2005 The Nationals beat the Mets in NY 4-2 last night. Let's see, Hector Carrasco versus Tom Glavin....I'll take Hector! The reliever went 4 innings giving up 2 runs on 3 hits and then turned it over to his buddies in the bullpen. The relievers went 5 innings giving up no runs and 2 hits. Gary Majewski got the win (4-3 2.76 ERA). The nats are 4 games behind Florida in the wild card race.
September 9, 2005 The Marlins beat the Nats 7-4 with John Patterson (8-5, 2.75 ERA) struggling with a sinus infection. The Atlanta Braves are coming to town in another important series. Loaiza and Hernandez will pitch the first two games and we better win them both because the other starters have been awful. We need to win this series to stay in the hunt for the Wild Card.
September 8, 2005 The Marlins shelled the Nats 12-1 with Halama not getting out of the first inning. Tonight we will get back on track with John Patterson going against Josh Beckett.
September 7, 2005 The Nats lost yesterday 4-2 to the Marlins and will lose again tonight. Dontrelle Willis against John Halama? No Contest. Halama is a very bad pitcher.
September 2, 2005 The Nats lost 8-7 on a 10th inning home run by Andruw Jones off of Luis Ayala (8-7). What a shame. Well it's off to Philadelphia for some more critical games against a team that is alive in the wildcard race.
September 1, 2005 The Nats split a double header with Atlanta yesterday to give them 2 of 3 so far in this 4 game series. They really could use a win today which would place them 2 games closer to the top spot for the series. A loss would mean they made no progress in catching up to the wild card teams or Atlanta. Tonight will be difficult with Tony Armas (7-7) going against Atlanta's best, John Smoltz (13-6).
Livan Hernandez kept the Nats close giving up 3 runs in 7 1/3 innings. Mike Stanton got the win (1-1) and Chad Cordero picked up his 43rd save. I have been a big fan of ol' Livan, but you know, he is not as sharp as last year. Batters are hitting .293 against him versus about .250 in the two previous years. And, he is walking more and striking out less. However, he has cut his home runs from one every 10 innings last year to one every 12.5 innings. I guess that is a positive. I am still a believer in Livan...he puts in the innings and gives the Nats a chance to win.
August 28, 2005 After losing two games in a row to the Cardinals, both 6-0 scores, the Nats will now take on the Eastern Division Leading Atlanta Braves. We need to take at least two of the three games to keep us in the race. Fortunately we have John Patterson ready to start tonight with Livan and Loaiza to follow. That's the best we can do. Let's hope they rise to the occasion. I predict we do win 2 of 3!
August 26, 2005 Nats lose to a rejuvinated Ken Griffey and the Reds, 5-3. Griffey hit his 30th home run of the year and my man, Livan Hernandez lost (14-6, 3.87 ERA) giving up 4 runs on 10 hits in 6 innings. He hasn't quite had it since the All Star break. In August, his ERA is 7.48 versus 3.27 prior to August. He is averaging 5 2/3 innings versus 7 2/3. Yesterday, Vinnie Castilla and Jamie Carroll lead the Nats with 2 hits each. Now the Nats take on the National League's best team, the St. Louis Cardinals in a series in DC. That will be followed by the Atlanta Braves. Two very big series...they need to hold their own here or their playoff hopes will slip further away.
August 25, 2005 Nats beat Reds 5-3 John Patterson (7-4, 2.38 ERA) again provided a high quality start and the Nats got back on track. Patterson has not given up more than 3 runs in an outing since June. Batters are hitting .224 against him this year. Today, we get Livan to pitch!
August 19, 2005 Nats split against the Phillies Tony Armas (7-6, 4.29 ERA) went a strong 5 innings in the first game (2 runs on 5 hits) but the Nats lost 2-1. Ryan Drese did not fare as well giving up 4 runs on 5 hits in 5 innings, but the Nats came back from a 4 run deficit to win 5-4. And one common factor in both games....the Nats relievers gave up ZERO runs. This sounds like the beginning of the season when the relievers were especially tough. Have they found the magic again? Let's hope so. The relievers went 8 innings giving up no runs on 5 hits. You can't get much better than that. Ayala (8-6, 2.63 ERA) was the winner. Today it is John Patterson (7-3, 2.44 ERA) against the Met's Seo (4-1, 1.35 ERA).
August 18, 2005 Nats lose 4-3 to the Phillies, remain 1/2 games behind Houston in the chase for the wild card. Esteban Loaiza (7-9, 3.64 ERA) was the losing pitcher giving up 10 hits and 4 runs in 5 2/3 innings. The Nats only had 6 hits against John Lieber (12-10). Tony Armas (7-5, 4.33) and Ryan Dreese (7-12, 5.67) will pitch in a double header against the Phillies today. Unusual event of the day.....Christian Guzman got a hit today to raise his average to .190.
August 16, 2005 You gotta Love Livan! Livan Hernandez beat the Phillies 5-2 last night picking up his 14th win (against 5 losses) in another strong effort (2 runs, 5 hits in 8 innings). This guy is such a strong consistent fixture in the Nats rotation. You can pencil him in for 6+ to 8 innings every time he takes the mound, and he will give up 2-4 runs. Rarely does he get bombed. He always keeps you in the game with a chance to win. His era of 3.45 ERA is only .15 below last year's 3.60 ERA when he went 11-15. What a difference a year makes. I saw Hernandez pitch against the Blue Jays back at the end of June and thought he was a bit on the hefty side (supposedly 245 lbs.) and was not much of an athlete or hitter. It looked like running was a major effort only to be attempted as a last resort. So then a few weeks ago he gets 3 hits in a game including a homerun. Yeah, you gotta love Livan! Last nights win give the Nats 4 wins in a row!
August 15, 2005 Tough times for our Nats. But remember where we came from and what our expectations were...they werer LOW! You know all of these one-run games we are now losing but were winning? Last year, we rarely saw one run wins or losses. We were blown out on a regular basis. Check out some of the Summer scores from last year and you will appreciate what we have accomplished already this year.
And if you want to feel even batter about the Nats, remember that they have a better record than the Orioles and are drawing more fans!
go to last year's Washington Nationals page
July 28, 2005 OK, we are losing some games now and are out of first place. We have had quite a run and it has been great. But, face it, the lineups of all the other teams in the NL East are just plain better than the Nats. Our pitching is the glue holding this jalopy together. Let's just enjoy having this team and encourage them to continue to overachieve.
June 16, 2005 Drese (5-6) went 8 innings giving up only 2 hits and Chad Cordero registered his 21st save while lowering his ERA to 1.06. Drese gave up 4 walks but was effectively wild in picking up his first career shutout. He was making his first start for the Nats since he was released by Texas last week. Brian Schneider's 4th home run off of Bartolo Colon was the only run the Nats needed to win.
June 15, 2005
Nationals get back on winning track with 6-3 win over the Angels. Levon Hernandez pitched 5 2/3 innings giving up 3 runs and the bullpen was rock solid the rest of the way. Luis Ayala and Chad Cordero pitched the 8th and 9th saving the win for Gary Majewski (2-0). Cordero picked up his league leading 20th save. Check out MLB for the game wrap-up.
June 11, 2005 Today marks one year that we have been covering the Washington Nationals and what a difference a year makes. One year ago, the Nationals swept a double header against the Kansas City Royals. In the second game, Sun Woo Kim releived Toma Ohka and pitched 4 1/3 innings of scoreless ball to raise his record to 3-2. One year later, Toma Ohka is traded away and Sun Woo Kim starts for him and pitches a solid 5 innings in another Nationals win.
June 9, 2005 The Nationals are now 1 1/2 games ahead of the Phillies and have won 9 out of the last 10 games. Nick Johnson is playing up to his capabilities right now. I have watched him bat when he was with the Yankees and he really makes a pitcher work hard. He fights and scraps in every at-bat and has a good eye for the strike zone. That is why his on-base percentage is second in the NL at .453. Nick has arrived. Now let's just keep him healthly.
June 6, 2005 How Sweet is This - First Place!
Your Washington Nationals are now sitting alone in first place of the NL East. Yesterday's 6-3 win over the Florida Marlins drove the latter into last place, a whole 1-1/2 games out of first place. The competitiveness of the NL East is amazing with all teams having winning records. The Nationals are proving to be a durable team after suffering numerous injuries to key players. They just keep winning. The ace of the pitching staff, Levon Hernandez has an 8-2 record and leads the league in innings pitched with 91, about 9 more than the next best. This guy is a horse. He just keeps providing solid outings and this year he actually has run support.
Check back later this week to see the 1 year anniversary of Oh Wow Look at This.com's coverage of the Washington Nationals. We will give a comparison of where they were last year.
April 16, 2005 Nats are not Offensively Challenged Anymore!
After beating Arizona on Thursday night, the Nats are tied with Atlanta for first place in the National League East. Last year, only 1 Expo was listed as a leader in any offensive category, Wilkerson with runs scored. Now, it is early in the season, but look at all of the players who are stepping up and playing well on offense. Vinnie Castilla is hitting .393, Guillen is at .333 and leading the NL in home runs with 5 and total bases with 32, Wilkerson is at .333 and leading with 2 triples, Schneider leads with 5 doubles, Vidro is hitting .297 and Caroll is hitting .364. It won't last, but it's a start.
April 13, 2005 Nats beat Atlanta 11-4 in Atlanta!
Can you believe it? The Nats have not yet had a home game and they are 5-4 having just beaten the Braves IN ATLANTA 2 out of 3 games...and without a start from Hernandez! That is incredible! Today they won 11-4 with Jose Guillen hitting two home runs to give him a league leading 5 for the year. The Washington Bombers! Amazing! Tomo Ohka (1-1) pitched six innings and gave up three runs on four hits. He struck two and walked six. Not a brilliant outing, but when you keep the Nationals close, they have a chance. This was the first time this team won a series against Atlanta since April 2003. Just for a laugh, check out how the former Expo's did last Summer and you will see how they had pretty little pitching and hitting support but were not uncompetitive. So this year will be fun. Follow the team and enjoy their progress. Check out game results on the MLB web site.
April 4, 2005
This is it! Today is the beginning of the Washington Nationals first season. My message to Washinton baseball fans is to embrase the team, take them in as your own and don't get delusions of grandeaur thinking that they MUST WIN THE DIVISION! You finally have a team and you deserve to have one. Rejoice in your good fortune and enjoy it. Who knows, we may get lucky some day and win something, but don't count on it. The fact that you have a team of your very own is the important thing.
March 26, 2005
We have had the Expos here in Washington since June 11th, 2004. Need proof? Check out the National's box scores and highlights.
March 2, 2005 - Your Washington Nationals are unbeaten. Today they beat the Mets 5-3. TJ Tucker was the winning pitcher for the Nationals pitching 1 shutout inning, striking out one and giving up no hits. Jose Guillen hit a two-run home run off Aaron Heilman. Chad Cordero struck out the sides to pick up the save.
The Washington media is doing a good job of talking-up the Nationals although originally they were very negative on the quality of the players. If you scan the game summaries below from a two month period of time, you will see where the strengths and weaknesses were. The Nationals have definitely improved with the pickup of Jose Guillen Christian Guzman, and Vinnie Castilla. Watch out for Nick Johnson, Wilkerson, Jose Vidro, Chad Cordero, Luis Ayala, and Tony Armas. But, the best player by far is Livan Hernandez. He lead the league in innings pitched (255) and complete games (9) and kept his ERA under 4. He is the guy to watch.
The main problem last year was starting pitching. Most of the time, the weaker starting pitchers would get shelled early and it was "game-over". The Expos were not good at coming from behind because they were not a good hitting team. However, if the starters kept it close, they had a very good chance because of Ayala and Cordero.
This is going to be an interesting season. I look for the Nationals to have a better record than the Baltimore Orioles! Wouldn't that be OUTSTANDING!