Beltway Baseball: Nats making do with injuries
CSN Washington dot com. And their folks welcome to CSN Washington dot com and beltway baseball presented by The Washington Times on chase -- here with mark Zuckerman Nationals Park. We'll catch up with the medical -- in just a minute -- going to start with an article you wrote this morning about the nationals pitchers and how. It's been kind of a change of philosophy that we haven't seen in the past they're striking out a lot of guys right now do you Gonzales and Stephen Strasburg. Are the top of the National League in strikeouts. A weren't -- is the significance of that in the team's history since moving here and I think it's maybe more sustainable. In the pitch to contact pitchers we've seen. Gamble certainly in their history they have not had to strike -- pitchers like this if you look back over out the last seven years this organization has been around. They've only had one guy whoever finished in the top ten strikeouts and actually it was John Patterson all the way back to doesn't fight night got. TO and Strasburg went into in the league and -- other three guys Zimmerman Jackson and -- -- Are not far off from that case it's a dramatic change from what they've had in the past and I think it was a point that this organization Mike Rizzo likes. Power arms and that was a big point emphasis that in trying to find these guys on time. I know the idea of pitching to contact hitting but now this -- it in -- good idea. But if you haven't gotten it matters when you miss it takes a lot of things that -- -- have to worry anymore about your defense behind. I think has made a big difference having particularly GO Strasburg the -- really extends all the way in the bottom rotation well. Talk about Bryce Harper he's been out here for a little bit a few weeks he's starting to find his power stroke I hit a few homers usually get a triple the other night. We we found -- earlier today awesome news about Michael Morse might become an accident than expected guys are gonna come back eventually is this guy here to stay even when these players do come back. -- or is not going anywhere. You know there was some question when he was first called up natives and only be for about a week until ranks and came back but the way he played -- -- -- that. Suggested that yankees ready to be up here gays in the struggle at times and we know that they know that. But he does so many things in the -- it's not just our. Which he finally in the last few games or so off. Base running. It's arm. It's just baseball instincts tell -- a system that he's shown suggest that he deserves to be up here. Maybe if Jayson Werth doesn't get hurt -- might have changed the equation a little bit but certainly would work out now probably until August. You're gonna see harper in right field and even -- does come back. I think you can see -- -- don't see -- out of Morse and harper and Werth and that is pretty potent offensive outfield that point. -- that's -- injuries the nationals that have had their fair share than this year and none of them has been so serious that it really threatens. Their entire season until Wilson Ramos went down last week with a knee injury. Casey's Flores is the starter now and they had to bring a few guys that we saw what happened that we. Can they get through the rest of the season with Jesus Flores is the primary catcher and whoever the backup or else might like resonated around finds. Analyst is going to be a big question now because obviously Jesus Flores has done this before before he hurt his shoulder he was there everyday catcher was going to be the guy long term and they liked him a lot. And there's a lot of confidence in him that he can do it but. Until he actually have to go out and play every game it's hard to say I was gonna hold up physically and I was gonna perform. I think given what they have now their comfortable moving forward with floors and at the moment Maldonado. Obviously to see though it over time. If Flores can catch 56 days a week and hold up physically and still produce at the plate I think they're fine on the -- seasonally. If on the other hand it looks like you know what. Emailing me at 34 game we catcher and I need somebody else is splitting the job with and I'm not sure they wanna put that moment were the only time he comes back. And that's right he succeeded in bringing him better and not get a start ahead of floors that we share the job or be more vote 18 is one. As a catcher had to get -- -- these you know and really gets by with. One catcher -- the especially these days that it. Yeah unless you unless you've got I mean really cream of the crop number one guy in at the moment they don't have that so yeah you you want so obvious you don't wanna find yourself in the spot now. Read -- you have to rely on him. Or one of these back ups and who has the -- record in the minors. And you really don't wanna have to suffer -- another injury -- -- overdose he's behind -- play. Right Bryce Harper no chance to not happening David Johnson things not to take that risk it would be great to see that now not. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Who wants note does Bo Porter worked regularly with Bryce Harper on outfield skills yet he absolutely does that Bo Porter for those who don't know in addition to being third base coach. It's also the outfield instructor I've worked very hard -- with all the guys a particularly important harper on all sorts of stuff it's. Both reading fly balls off the -- -- -- different positions you know let's remember harper -- play all three. Outfield positions them here in the majors without having a lot of experience and it. -- So there's that. Let's also not decision making and you know when to cut loose with that arm went to make Irwin knocked. How to position yourself properly. For different and the -- so there's a lot of stuff that goes on and -- it working with. Harper and also especially Tyler Moore who's really has very little. Outfield experience and you every afternoon -- -- take batting practice goes out there and work this past. Our next reader question is pretty fun one in my opinion from that stand one day wants to know about the all star game. It's coming and it's it's still a little bit awaits the winner of the ballots out there it's our talent out there you never know who could go to -- -- more than honestly but. Who is -- not all star pick this year or could they actually have more than one for the first time since 2000. I think they are gonna have more than one for the first time since -- -- it is more than acrid air and maybe more than two. At this point -- -- DNS. I think that Stephen Strasburg is gonna find -- way in that game both. Because I was performed obviously and the attention and the spotlight. You know. Major League Baseball would love to have Stephen Strasburg all star game so I think you see that. If you -- structure of the team Gio Gonzales has certainly made his case we're talking about that early lead Strasburg in strikeouts is and wins. I would not be surprised if this keeps up CTO Gonzales in there as well so that's too. Adam -- -- look at what he's done for this team this year he's never been an all star he's always been slow starter for easily. He's among the top ten almost every offensive category now you have to consider him as a possibility. -- has gotten off to a slow start in the injury happened. He's got to make up some ground I think to get there but there's still time to let that happen. And then what if the kid keeps playing. Really well and again Major League Baseball would love to have Bryce Harper on that stage especially in the home run derby. And I think harper would absolutely embrace that idea he loves batting practice he's been home run -- in the past I think you would love that. He's still got to produce a little bit more I think before you can would -- put on a team but. That's a lot of candidates to be discussing I think at least to those guys not more than -- -- -- going to be Kansas City one more guy could have an outside chance right what about Ian Desmond. Yeah yeah it's good point forgot about him at the numbers I know we focus sometimes too much and on base percentage which is slow. His slugging percentage is better than any other shortstop and actually you know for now. But very good defense. And just the attention and all these guys get playing out of first place team for the first time yeah I would actually put him especially if it's kind of fun to think about this. All these years where they had this round come up with who's gonna represent the nationals note that I. There are more than enough worthy candidates and in the end we may be talking about somebody who deserve to be there that doesn't get to. Yeah yeah absolutely. On the topic of the all star game just recently the Mets were awarded the 2013 all star game. Any development or any any thoughts on the nationals -- -- well I think it is gonna come here before too long they've applied. The 2015 game. Along with a couple other cities and the Marlins and reds. Looking for that one and the B likes to try to staggered -- actually one year there in the evening here. So the front runner for 2014 exposed in Minnesota which just opened its new park. The issue I think MLB wants to come here and not to have that game here. The issue is the area around baseball are. Not just what's here they want to have a showcase event like that where there is other there are other things to do in the neighborhood at the moment that this isn't that much. It was the plan all along in the ballpark -- economy -- Lot of these projects are just I'm getting right now so and that's -- get done between fifteen. Maybe if so I think they need to see it and not me and wait another two years at that point. Seventeen. I do you think is gonna come here that might not -- it. Well to be exciting to have it here. We finally have some exciting baseball both here and up and Baltimore which is something new and Amanda we'll talk about. Just a moment along with some other things will be right back with a man -- mark. Are right back here Nationals Park and now joined by him and how much of The Washington Times and Amanda seems like. Since the middle of spring training almost everyday and ask about Michael. What's the update yet setback -- looked like he might combat the latest is now it looks like he -- back sooner. We all thought they were targeting June 8 for the Red Sox series you might we actually see him on the homestand before them. Line that's been chasing I did and gave us today that you know. Morse -- on him you know he we're leaving. On Monday that air guard and thinking that pat him on actually start playing down there and he told -- you got back on the road I'm I'll be ready which is eighteenth that they had initially targeted. You know you don't might. Might is very hard to up and down and and keep it down and I feel like he's trying to accelerate that -- Well yeah I think they need to be careful here obviously -- return would be huge for this team and help them out by. As we've seen we already have one major setback but maybe rushing try to get back to you soon on the rehab assignment in Hagerstown again you really care what this. -- -- -- -- Seem to make a lot of sense that you have a week of interleague games in DH and not have to play it healed and sort of like Avant back and not all the way back brilliantly in. If he's ready sure bring him back it would be great but again you really care what they need him over the second half season. Absolutely and I think that you know in order for them to be so careful I think that they definitely need to get them there and and I -- sonogram or something. He showed to look at out muscled look directly at that up until then we are completely healed and here it's okay now and you know you hope that they would take that next step. After having RD talent that got him once before so we'll we'll see how this played out play. You know Mike is obviously very. Yeah it's been driving him nuts that's it on the sidelines watching all this. Now one guy who has taken advantage of the opportunity. To hit clean up this whole time and -- gross to. I mean I don't know where this team be without him the moment offensively at least. Yet the great game last night with a home run at the rerun double for his 1000 -- the -- Also we're talking about a guy who could be in -- that's all star. A gold glove because he's hitting finally and maybe it really early but I think it's a guy who you voted on and be here right now would be somewhere in. The discussion. Can't ask Max and the thing about picking up his option for next hair I would just something I think at the end of last season ever and think it was a foregone conclusion. They keep them for -- part ways. Until Thursday's you know how -- thought it internally so I mean there's a lot of things that he's doing this time. Yeah it's pretty remarkable what he's done so now let's look ahead and if worse comes back when he comes back. He had been just as clean up -- you know 331. Homers 95 RBIs. You're -- him on the afternoon cleanup spot or maybe would you. I think -- a chance that actually went when Michael Morse was back he actually hit and it and number of reasons first I'll. At LaRoche is hitting so well I mean he's. I just had to Mark DeRosa and the club doesn't mean that much thought to bringing mark stop what you think that lets talk about this -- I mean he just they are not there means and what he's been able to do this season so that's the first thing. The you know like likes -- line left right left right. It hit him it here a lot you're able to have Ryan Zimmerman wrote it Martin's pretty. Pretty good middle of new York and throw Bryce Harper and next don't forget about him you don't price average numbers it's been pretty pretty get tired the tired so I would be surprised if he hit it. You know I don't know that might take it lightly yeah he's -- -- nice to lighten the load. On a lot of -- on them offensively he's basically carried them from us here but he also Lleyton emblem on might be gaps. Now outs -- they won't have Morse this weekend it will happen roads there and harper. For the first of the two. Out battle of the beltway series and this is beltway baseball team makes and I discussed. The upcoming series now we both have some previous experience covering another franchise on the road. In much worse times and they're experiencing right now that's. How big -- deal is this that these two teams are gonna play potentially both of them in first place. Yeah. It I think -- Buck Showalter said earlier this week that it's a big deal for the Indy I think that's really what it would be great I think for this area is actually became a rivalry you know these teams played really competitive game six year. It would be really great but I do you think that this is an important weekend for the and he is because they've all come and able kind of talk about -- You know both teams in first place and I anyway and not you know -- is going to be really good spot coming into that series and it's didn't lead to some pretty competitive game. Yet even when they were both not doing so well in the standings they've usually been some fairly competitive games and -- in games that fans have gotten in. Yeah there's always gonna have some of the visiting side here I think it's been a great environment I think. The timing of it's it's good for the nationals and that there's -- The draw a little bit more anyways getting a little more attention locally they're the only team playing in town right now but the caps getting eliminated with him -- You know media attention and management team. I'm a different is it pretty exciting series. Whether it's a real rivalry I don't know anything that happened until you have something on the field. Really. Dictate the like without the Phillies but if nothing else I think it took me -- seniors. I think that this game. And you know -- funny listening to Davey you obviously -- that -- Baltimore -- today you know I really hope we don't hear that darn -- during the anthem. Because you know that's gonna tell you how many Orioles and they're here and I mean castles and there are here and at the Nationals Park I think there and hoping it. They get there atmosphere and not just Alex what a great names in the beltway it's the national you know kind of cleaning. Yes absolutely should be a fun battle of the beltway is series this weekend and that will wrap up this episode of beltway. Baseball think you do Amanda thank you to chase talk against him. CSN Washington dot com.