Author Archives: Mark Zuckerman

Video: The streak, Morse and Trader Jack

Should we have seen the Nationals’ recent winning streak coming? Has Michael Morse been the best hitter in baseball over the last month? Can the Cardinals survive without Albert Pujols? And what are the Marlins thinking bringing back 80-year-old Jack McKeon to manage?

I tackled all these questions today on CSN’s SportsNet Central with anchor Michael Jenkins. Enjoy… Continue reading

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A minor trade that paid major dividends

US Presswire photoMichael Morse is establishing himself as a major offensive force.
In late June 2009, the Seattle Mariners were hovering just above the .500 mark, trying to keep themselves in the AL wild-card race. First-year general manager Jack Zduriencik, feeling the need to add a reserve outfielder to the roster, zeroed in on the Nationals’ Ryan Langerhans.

Langerhans had bounced back and Continue reading

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Video: John Wall’s terrible first pitch

John Wall has the ability to do a lot of things with a basketball in his hands. With a baseball? Not so much.

The Wizards point guard threw out the ceremonial first pitch before Friday night’s game at Nationals Park, and as you can see, it required a spectacular effort from Drew Storen merely to snag the errant throw.

In case you missed it, here’s video of Wall’s terrible pitch from Continue reading

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Video: Catching up with Jerry Hairston

Jerry Hairston and I go back a ways. Ten years ago, he was a young, starting second baseman for the Orioles. And I was a young beat writer covering him in Baltimore.

Plenty has changed, for both of us, over the last decade. Hairston has become something of a super-utility man, versatile enough to play just about anywhere on the field while also being able to settle in at one position for an Continue reading

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A sloppy end to a sparkling streak

Associated Press photoRyan Zimmerman is thrown out trying to stretch a single into a double.
The ball bounced right to Ryan Zimmerman, and as he turned to throw to second base, everyone in the crowd of 35,439 at Nationals Park must have had the same thought: Tailor-made double play. He always makes that play.

And then the ball came out of Zimmerman’s hand, sailed past a lunging Danny Espinosa Continue reading

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Rizzo on streak, trade deadline, Potomac

Mike Rizzo, obviously, is pleased with the eight-game winning streak the Nationals carried into today’s series finale against the Orioles. But the general manager isn’t necessarily surprised by this sudden success, given what he had seen in the weeks leading up to it.

Nor does he believe the winning streak will change his approach to roster-shaping at the July 31 trade deadline.

"No, it doesn’t Continue reading

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Game 72: Orioles at Nats

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDERThe Nats are looking for their third straight sweep and ninth straight win today.
Let’s see, it’s Father’s Day. The Nationals are on an eight-game winning streak. They’re one game under .500. And they should be playing in front of a near-full house this afternoon at Nationals Park. Yes, life is good right now.

In their quest for consecutive victory No. 9 Continue reading

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Ankiel placed on DL

Updated at 1:05 p.m.

The Nationals placed outfielder Rick Ankiel on the 15-day disabled list with a strained intercostal muscle this morning, a move that cleared roster space for left-hander Tom Gorzelanny to be activated off the DL and start the series finale against the Orioles.

Ankiel hadn’t played since Tuesday, when he felt a twinge in his ribcage tracking down Ryan Theriot’s base hit to Continue reading

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A winning streak that matters

Associated Press photoRyan Zimmerman and Michael Morse each homered in the Nationals’ 4-2 victory.
Ryan Zimmerman has been a part of winning streaks with the Nationals before. He’s even experienced an eighth-game surge in the big leagues, back in August 2009.

That streak, though, merely brought the Nats to within 32 games of the .500 mark. Not exactly a meaningful stretch, in the grand scheme Continue reading

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Game 71: Orioles at Nats

Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDERThe Nats look to make it eight in a row today at Nationals Park.
How do you keep a winning streak going? By not tinkering with success. Jim Riggleman never intended to make his pitcher-hitting-eighth idea a permanent one. But the Nationals haven’t lost since the manager used the unconventional lineup for the first time last weekend in San Diego.

So, no Continue reading

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