The Washington Times - May 11, 2012, 11:18AM

Friday

It’s a shame when the opposing hurler would rather pitch to your $126-million cleanup guy than your 19-year-old No. 3 hitter. #Nats

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Words I never thought I’d type (at this stage): The #Nats need to give Bryce Harper some protection in that lineup. Too easy to walk him.

With Joe West out, the umpiring crew has obviously decided it’s OK to do three-fourths of a good job tonight. #Nats #Phillies #MLB

The #Caps and #Rangers went 3 OTs the other night. Let’s hope the #Nats and #Phillies don’t feel like they’ve been challenged. #MLB

My rule of thumb has always been: No sporting event should last longer than it takes to read Robert Caro’s biography of LBJ. #Nats #Phillies

If you combine #Caps‘ 10 playoff games w/ #Nats‘ 26 RS games, you get 23 (of 36) 1-run/goal games, 11 of which have gone into extras/OT.

Saturday

If every sporting event started at 12:30 p.m., I’d be a much younger man today. #Caps #Rangers #NHL

In keeping with the spirit of the weekend — and because they lost Game 3 — I’m looking for the #Caps to be Avengers today. #NHL

We’ve seen young goalies (e.g. Dryden) join a team late + be a big factor in playoffs, but what about a skater like Kreider? #Rangers #Caps

I can remember, ages ago, Ken Morrow coming off ‘80 U.S. Olympic team + helping #Islanders win the Cup. Other examples? #Rangers #Caps

@ryanohalloran informs me RW Trent Klatt left U. of Minnesota in ‘92 and played in 6 playoff games for #NorthStars#Caps #Rangers

I couldn’t tell if Ovie threw his splitter or his four-seamer there, but Lundqvist couldn’t glove it. 1-0, #Caps#Rangers #NHL

I’d say the #Caps need to play Knuble more, but for some reason it sounds like: More cowbell! #Rangers #NHL

It’s real easy to avoid the kind of penalty Ovie just got: leaving his feet to deliver hit. Just tell ‘em: This ain’t figure skating. #Caps

#Rangers scored 1:10 into 2nd period + with 3:17 left. In other words, #Caps came late to the dance + checked out early. Bad habit. #NHL

Trying to remember the last time I knew what I was going to write about the #Caps before the 3rd period started. #Rangers #NHL

Let me just say there would be carnage in this country if judges were at all receptive to the “playoff hockey” line of defense. #Caps #NHL

I’ll Have Another won the #KentuckyDerby. Breathalyzer, I think, was second.

Sunday

Amare Stoudemire is the #NBA’s version of Fire Marshall Bill. #Knicks #Heat

The #Kings have taken out the top two seeds in the West in a mere nine games. Gotta be a record, doesn’t it? #JustAskin #NHL #Blues #Canucks

They’re in the 17th inning at Fenway Park. In situations like this, I think Buck Showalter should have Bud Selig close. #Orioles #RedSox

The #Phillies pitched Bryce Harper more carefully than the #Nats did Hunter Pence in this series. Bizarre. #MLB

The #Nats are down 9-1 on Sunday Night Baseball? That’s OK. We’re tough. We can take it. We lived through #Eagles 59, #Redskins 28 on #MNF.

Monday

The #Rangers and #Caps have taken turns scoring — one for me, one for you — for 12 goals now. It’s the #Bruins series all over again. #NHL

Remember when the #Caps came from 3 goals down in the 3rd period vs. the #Rangers last year? Unimaginable now — the lead AND the comeback.

A triple-OT loss and THIS loss in the space of three games. Be fascinating to see if the #Caps can regroup and force a 7th game. #Rangers

I’ve been so inoculated by the #Caps, I don’t even blink anymore when something like that happens. At a certain point, you become insensate.

Tuesday

More “old-school” baseball research: 1. A-Rod, 18 as a rookie, didn’t get hit by a pitch until he was 20 (471st PA). #Nats #Phillies #MLB

2. Pudge Rodriguez, 19 as a rookie, didn’t get hit by a pitch until he was 20 (308th PA). #Nats #Phillies #MLB

3. Johnny Bench, 19 as a rookie, didn’t get hit by a pitch until he was 20 (494th PA). What tradition? #Nats #Phillies #MLB

Here’s a goodie: 4. Mel Ott, 17 as a rookie (in 1926), didn’t get hit by a pitch until he was 19. It was his 225th #MLB game. #Nats #Phillies

Research suggests the youngest #MLB hitter to get plunked was this  #Phillies 18-year-old, Fred Van Dusen. http://bit.ly/Ju0WTz #Nats

So that explains everything. Cole Hamels was just trying to get even for Fred Van Dusen. #Nats  #MLBVan Dusen was a bonus baby who had exactly one #MLB at bat — in late 1955. And he got drilled. #Nats #Phillies

Wait, I’ve found another: Danny Murphy of the ‘60 #Cubs was 17 years, 10 months (roughly) when he was hit by a pitch. #Nats #Phillies #MLB

Murphy started out as an OF and became a P later on. Here’s the box of the game: http://bit.ly/IWQ0vO #Nats #Phillies #MLB

The #NHL has decided the #Rangers‘ equalizer Monday night came with 7.6 seconds left, not 6.6. That lessens the pain 15.2 percent. #Caps

#MLB’s fining of Mike Rizzo is another of baseball’s You Can’t Handle the Truth moments. #Nats #Phillies

Jacoby Jones had one of worst games I’ve ever seen a PR have vs. #Ravens in playoffs (FUM, muff + returns of -6 and -2). Now a Raven. #NFL 

If Will Middlebrooks has made Kevin Youkilis tradeable in Boston, #Nats might want to kick the tires on Youk. Can play 1B-3B-OF, good OBP.

Youkilis ain’t cheap ($12M), but he has $1M buyout for next season, so #Nats wouldn’t be on the hook long term. They could use another bat.

The judge in the #Clemens trial has told the lawyers to speed it up. Said something like: “This is becoming too much like a baseball game.”

The #Nats‘ next HR will be the 1,000th in their history (‘05-12). FYI, Bryce: Burnett’s next HBP will be the 100th in HIS history. #Pirates

Burnett, btw, is tied for #MLB lead in hit batsmen since ‘06 (68). Anybody else find that amusing, in the wake of the Bryce-Cole thing? #Nats

Among #MLB’s chuck-and-duck leaders since ‘06 is old friend Jason Marquis (55 HBP, tied for 8th). #Nats #Pirates

When somebody told me Hamilton had 4 HRs tonight up in Baltimore, I thought he was just joshing me. #Rangers #Orioles #MLB

Wednesday

I don’t blame Davey Johnson for being concerned about Danny Espinosa. 778 AB into his career, Espi’s hitting .226 with 233 Ks. #Nats

Switch-hitters who have hit under .230 in 1st 3 seasons (500 AB): Ramon Santiago, Gary Mathews Jr., Luis Alicea, Omar Vizquel … #Nats

… Stan Jefferson, Al Newman, Mark Bailey, Jose Uribe, Paul Householder. That’s it in the last 30 years. Not a sterling lineup. #Nats

Espinosa’s numbers (.226 BA, 28 HR, 233 Ks, .706 OPS) are remarkably similar to Justin Smoak’s (.221, 31, 223, .677). #Nats #Mariners

@royhelujr29 just tweeted #NFL is going to let him add Jr. to his jersey. He’s already the only Helu in league’s 93-year history. #Redskins

Thinking of taking the term “skill set,” duct-taping a stick of dynamite to it and lighting the fuse. Anybody got a match?

Here at Verizon Center, where the #Caps will try to force the #Rangersto a 7th game. And who (outside of NY) doesn’t want that? #NHL

I’ve decided the Guy on Stilts outside of Verizon Center should be wearing a Chara jersey. #Caps #Rangers #Bruins

#Caps face elimination, #Rangers don’t. Different dynamic from Games 6 and 7 of #Bruins series. How will the home team respond? #NHL

There’s your answer to the question: How will the #Caps respond? Ovie with a PP goal just 1:28 in. Game on. #Rangers #NHL

The #Rangers have bled in this series more than Chuck Wepner. Halpern to the box. Double minor. 4-minute PK for #Caps#NHL

Thursday

At Kettler Iceplex where, any moment now, Dale Hunter is expected to clear his throat. #Caps

The #Caps actually allowed me to make 2nd edition today with a quoteless column. Hurray for Wins In Regulation.

So many columns/stories get junked because of a late goal that sends a game into OT. Somebody should archive them. Make fun reading. #Caps

You could call it: The Series That Almost Was. Or: What Might Have Been. #Caps

Who said: I think it helps the great athlete to be very stubborn + about 1/2-dumb. That way he doesn’t think anything is totally impossible.

Answer: Dan Jenkins, who was just inducted into the World Golf HOF. Read his speech: http://golfdig.st/KqQRc2 #PGATour

The only way this “prison email” business could be more interesting, #Bountygate-wise … #NFL #Saints

… is if the inmate finished 2nd to Obama in a presidential primary.#NFL #Saints #Bountygate

13 Ks for Strasburg in 6 innings. Nobody’s had more in that short a stint since this guy: http://bit.ly/Lu1uKG #Nats #Tigers #MLB

Friday

Today we answer the question: Who’s had a worse week on the golf course, #TigerWoods or Josh Beckett? #RedSox #MLB #PGATour