The Washington Nationals’ season charged onward on Wednesday night when their thrilling 3-2 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies pushed one more breath of life into them. And then they stared at the television screens in the clubhouse hoping a Cincinnati Reds loss might give them another.
Amanda Comak covers the Washington Nationals for The Washington Times.
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Tanner Roark will make the first start of his major league career on Saturday when the rookie right-hander takes the ball for the Nationals against the Marlins.
There were times, earlier this season, when Denard Span drove himself crazy trying to figure out what was wrong. That has not been an issue for the Washington Nationals' center fielder of late. Span is hitting .313 with a .349 on-base percentage with a .431 slugging percentage since the All-Star break. And during his current 16-game hitting streak that dates back to Aug. 17, Span is hitting .415 with a .457 on-base percentage and a .569 slugging percentage.
Bryce Harper has started every game since Aug. 17, and he has not missed an entire game since July 24. He has battled injury, however, pretty much throughout the season, including missing 31 games on the disabled list with bursitis in his left knee.
By the time it was over, the box score was ugly enough to at least marginally describe what had transpired in the previous three hours and 38 minutes between the Washington Nationals and Philadelphia Phillies. It had the usual important facts, like the final score, which marked a 9-6 Nationals victory -- their 70th of the 2013 season. And then it had the rest. Thirteen walks, four errors, four homers, one balk and five wild pitches between the two teams in one of the sloppiest games of the season.
The Washington Nationals had indicated for a few weeks that they did not plan to call second baseman Danny Espinosa back up to the major leagues when rosters expanded in September. That became somewhat official on Tuesday when they added five more players to their roster and Espinosa was not among them.
The Washington Nationals added five more players to their active roster on Tuesday, calling up infielder Zach Walters, outfielders Corey Brown and Eury Perez, utility man Jeff Kobernus and left-hander Xavier Cedeno in their second round of September additions.
Bryce Harper was in the Washington Nationals' lineup on Tuesday, but head trainer Lee Kuntz confirmed that the outfielder is dealing with "soreness," in his left hip and has been receiving treatment on it. Kuntz declined to say how long Harper has been getting treatment on his hip, and he did not know what originally caused the pain. But he indicated it was not an uncommon thing at this point in the year, with 137 games in the rearview mirror.
Monday night, after the Nationals' 3-2 loss, manager Davey Johnson revealed he'd recently learned Bryce Harper has been receiving treatment on one of his hips.
When the bullpen doors opened and he descended the steps that lead to the right center field entrance at Citizens Bank Park, the Nationals handed the ever-reliable Tyler Clippard a newly-acquired one-run lead. By the time manager Davey Johnson reluctantly came to take the ball from him six batters later, they trailed 3-2.
The Washington Nationals shut Taylor Jordan down for the season just more than two weeks ago, but it wasn't until Monday that they sent him home to Florida to begin a throwing program.
The Washington Nationals will see a familiar face in a strange uniform on Tuesday night when Roger Bernadina, previously one of the longest-tenured members of the Nationals organization, heads out to right field for the Philadelphia Phillies.
The Washington Nationals will add four or five more players to their major league roster on Tuesday, manager Davey Johnson said, plucking a pitcher and a few more position players from the Triple-A Syracuse roster.
About two weeks ago, Jayson Werth sat in the clubhouse at Wrigley Field and evaluated the Washington Nationals' chances to make a late-season run at the playoffs. He said then that, in his estimation, his team could maybe afford to lose about 10 more games. Maybe. And he acknowledged that even if they did that they'd still need a lot of help. Since then, the Nationals have lost just three times, meaning if Werth's calculation is correct their margin for error is down to seven more losses before the end of the season.
Jayson Werth helped get the Washington Nationals a little bit closer in the wild-card race. Werth's two-out RBI double in the eighth inning capped a late rally and the Nationals avoided a series sweep with a 6-5 win over the New York Mets on Sunday night.