Nats reverse trends, pick up win in St. Louis

NATS 8 CARDINALS 3Nats Start Fast, Stop Their Slide At FiveThe Post
The Nationals reversed their typical start of late, by going up by a handful of runs instead of giving up a handful of runs. Nick Johnson get a two run shot and so did ¡Dutch!, both in the first inning. Everything after that was just gravy. Tony Armas, Jr. pitched well again, going six innings and to raise his record to 2-2 with a 2.76 ERA. With John Patterson headed to the DL (The Post), Armas is the Nats best pitcher. if he can maintain this, the Nats will have three decent starters when Patterson gets off the DL and Livan Hernandez starts pitching like ¡LIVAN! (because he will, right?) again.

By the way, Busch Stadium III does not look like anything special at night on TV.

More from The Wash. Times: Nats jump out early in win over Cardinals

BoxscoreESPN


D.C. Tries to Force Comcast’s HandThe Post
As much as I like Ward 2 council member Jack Evans (file photo) I cannot help but think he is playing into the hands of evil by trying to force Comcast to carry MASN. I am resigned to the fact that the Nats will not be available for Comcast customers this year, so I would rather see Peter Angelo$ suffer and lose more and more money. I think Evans is doing Angelos$’ dirty work.

Va. Congressman Fuming Over Nationals TV DealWRC-TV
Rep. Tom Davis is also making threats to Comcast.

New owner will face minor complicationsThe Wash. Times
An unusually strong lede from Loverro:
Whoever buys the Washington Nationals will pay $450 million for the right to, in essence, be a minor league owner this season.

Building on that premise, Loverro suggests the new owner embrace that fact and bring out minor league entertainment. If only Al Schacht was still alive…


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Different pitcher, same story

Rookie Gets No SupportThe Post
The Nats must be the worst first inning team in all of baseball. They went down 3 and never recovered, losing 6-2 in St. Louis. Mike O’Conner gave up three runs in five innings in his MLB debut.

More from The Wash. Times: Nats’ skid reaches five games

BoxscoreESPN


City to Break Ground With OwnerThe Post
A bit of a misleading headline since there are is gurantee that MLB will have an owner named by Thursday’s ballpark groundbreaking. However, Mayor Anthony Williams went on the radio and said he expected this to happen, a nice reminder to MLB to get it figured out. Of course, MLB is usually tonedeaf in such matters, so there is no telling.

The announcement could come any day and the approval vote is “expected” to be at the May 17-18 owners meetings, with the sale becoming final around June 15.


No second thoughts for Soriano in left fieldPost-Dispatch
Out of town article about Alfonso Soriano’s switch to left.

It’s a New Page as Coach Returns to St. LouisThe Post
Mitchell Page, the Nats hitting coach, made his return to St. Louis yestreday. He was their hitting instructor in 2004 when they won the pennant. He left that job to confront alcoholism.
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Nats: shutout, swept, and still ownerless; rendering them down to little more than a one legged puppy named Lil’ Brother

REDS 4 NATIONALS 0

Nats Go Quietly As Reds SweepThe Post
The Nats wore those stupid red jerseys for another day game. Ugh, no wonder they only got a single hit. Fix the uniforms, boys!

More from The Wash. Times: Arroyo finishes off sweep at RFK

BoxscoreESPN


The big news yesterday was Brett Haber of W*USA-TV claiming that the Lerners had been awarded the team, using Jeff Smulyan as a source. MLB denies the report and Barry Svrluga was constantly imploring us to only believe what Thomas Heath was reporting. Here are the rest of the ownership articles and columns:

  • Impending Nats Sale Arouses SpeculationThe Post
  • MLB: No owner yetThe Wash. Times
  • T(H)OM LOVERROStill looking for an owner in CrazyvilleThe Wash. Times
  • Rick Snider: Nats waiting game almost overThe Wash. Examiner
  • Owning Up: Q & A on the Nats OwnershipWTOP
  • Black Executives Seek Stake in Nats’ FutureThe Post

    Nats Play to Empty Seats at RFKThe Post
    The attendance woes of the Nationals are looked at again.

    Nats make moves to improve pitchingThe Wash. Times
    Zach Day, tight shoulder and all, was claimed off waivers from Colorado. Billy Traber was sent back to N’awlins, while Jason Bergman is back in D.C. GW grad Michael O’conner is expected to have his contract purchased by the parent club so that he can start tonight. Oh yeah, John Patterson does not expect to pitch on Sunday either.

    More from The Post: Team Needs A Hand and A Few Arms


    Jim Bowden: Different ways to make your pitchThe Wash. Examiner
    I post this out of obligation, but I don’t read it.
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  • Somebody pinch me, I must be dreaming!

    New Nationals Owner To Be NamedWUSA9.com
    Ladies and gentlemen, to paraphrase former president Gerald Ford, I think our long Nationals nightmare may soon be over! If I read correctly, Cadillac Bud may declare the Lerner group as the new owners of our Washington Nationals!!! Bud, of course, is denying such a decision has been made (what else is new?), but sources say a decision is only days away. I’m keeping my fingers crossed, and saying a few dozen Hail Marys just to be on the safe side.


    Today’s surprise posting is brought to you by Deputy Editor Fritz Hamme.
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    Another night, another loss

    REDS 6 NATIONALS 5

    Traber Digs a Hole And the Nats Fall InThe Post
    P Billy Traber gave up four runs in the first and did not make it through the second. For the most part, the bullpen kept the Nats in it, but Felix Rodriguez’s allowed two runs and that was the difference. The Nats did come back and score five runs, but it was too much to overcome. LF Alfonso Soriano and 3B Ryan Zimmerman homered.

    You know, for a team that was unhappy with their schedule was mostly on the road the Nats have been pretty awful at home, winning only once in seven tries.

    More from The Wash. Times: Traber’s rough start hurts Nats in loss

    BoxscoreESPN


    Patterson to miss next startThe Wash. Times
    P John Patterson is skipping his next start due to a strained flexor muscle. Also, Robert Fick, currently rehabbing in AA, has had a setback.

    More of the same from The Post: Patterson Will Miss His Next Start


    Malek and Zients Travel to Meet With SeligThe Post
    The Washington Baseball Club flew out to Milwaukee to meet with Bud Selig. The day before, Bob DuPuy came to Washington to meet with the Lerner group.

    More from The Wash. Times: Malek, Zients meet with Selig


    ALBERT CHENDistrict of apathySports Illustrated
    Chen writes five paragraphs about the Nats. The first three are about all that has and is going wrong with the team, while the fourth is about why the could be interesting to watch. The fifth is about Soriano wanting to move back to second base next season.
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    Will Baltimorons finally get over Jeffrey Maier?

    Student exorcises O’s demon in filmThe Sun
    Remember Jeffrey Maier, the kid who caught a fly ball in game 1 of the ’96 ALCS? Baltimore does. So do Yankees fans, but they remember him only as a footnote. Fans in Balmer blame him for costing the O’s the pennant, which of course is nonsense. If I recall correctly, the Orioles came back and won the following game, before getting beaten by the superior team from the Bronx.

    A Baltimore area native at the same college as folk hero Maier has made a short film about him called “I Hate Jeffrey Maier.” Being a good sport, Maier agreed to appear in the film as himself. The filmmaker is hoping it will provide closure for Baltimore fans. The film may even be shown at Baltimore’s Senator Theatre. I just wonder if the screenings will be filled with Yankees fans.

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    Call him Livan Hernandez now

    REDS 4 NATIONALS 2

    Poor Start Dooms NatsThe Post
    Until further notice, the Nats former ace will be known as Livan Hernandez, not that other name with the “¡” and the “!” He gave up three runs in the first and another in the second, and that was it for the Nationals. Thomas Boswell has more details on the ace’s situation.

    More from The Wash. Times: Repeat performance

    BoxscoreESPN


    MLB President Pays a Visit to the Lerner FamilyThe Post
    Get out your tea leaves! Maybe this means the Lerner bid will finally be accepted; but really, I don’t know either.

    Phil Wood writes in The Wash. Examiner that he does not care where the owner comes from which is my position as well. My primary objection to the non-local Jeff Smulyan is that he proved to be a pretty craptacular owner in Seattle.

    More from The Wash. Times: Bidders tout minority involvementThe Wash. Times


    Losing faceThe Wash. Times
    Another anti-Jim Bowden column. I loved these lines:
    Bowden is a charlatan who can’t outrun the evidence against him. He couldn’t find big time with a road map.

    That’s going up in next month’s rotating quotes.


    Patterson’s Next Start Pushed BackThe Post
    P John Patterson is going to be pushed back a day in the rotation because of arm stiffness. More from The Wash. Times: Tight arm to delay Patterson’s start

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    Nats split abbreviated series with Atlanta

    I’m going to be really quick today – I’m exhausted from the weekend. Don’t forget Barry Svrluga will be signing copies of National Pastime at Olsson’s Lansburgh location tonight.

    BRAVES 3 NATIONALS 1

    Nationals’ Fortunes Change QuicklyThe Post
    P Gary Majewski blew the game last night. P Tony Armas, Jr. had another solid start.

    More from The Wash. Times: Bullpen blows lead


    Patterson part of waiting gameThe Wash. Times
    John Patterson gets everything but decisions, with Friday night being the latest example.

    Smulyan Promises Black President for NatsThe Post
    Jeff Smulyan is really playing the diversity card as the ownership sweepstakes come to a close.

    City Officials Leery of Nats Bidder’s SilenceThe Post
    The District government is put off by the lack of communication from the Lerners, nothing new there.

    A Conciliator Caught Off Base
    Speaking of the District government, Linda Cropp, now running for mayor is learning that trying to have it both ways has a price.

    Soriano making news with playThe Wash. Times
    Alfonso Soriano is playing rather well and already has one more homer at RFK (in about 20 AB) than Jose Vidro does in nearly 300 AB. Of course, Soriano is almost certainly a rent-a-player and probably won’t be here on August 1.

    Debate Over RFK Fences ContinuesThe Post
    Apparently, Jim Bowden studied spray charts to determine that Soriano’s swing could work well at RFK.
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