Drew Storen reacted to the news that Tyler Clippard may remain the team's closer even after Storen is fully ready to return to the bullpen.
Amanda Comak covers the Washington Nationals for The Washington Times.
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It was after his second straight 0-for-4 evening that Ryan Zimmerman and Nationals manager Davey Johnson both admitted the third baseman's shoulder is not right. The possibility of a cortisone injection exists, as does a possible disabled list stint centered on the All-Star break. But for now, Zimmerman will continue to gut it out, playing third base and hitting third for the Nationals.
For the first two months of the season, Washington Nationals manager Davey Johnson tried not to move Tyler Clippard out of his eighth-inning role. Too valuable there, Johnson felt, he didn't want to begin shifting him into a part-time closers role in Drew Storen's absence. Clippard has been so good since moving into that role at the end of May, though, that Johnson is now considering leaving him there even when Storen returns healthy around the All-Star break. In converting his 12th of 12 save opportunities Saturday night, Clippard continued a streak in which he has allowed just one hit in the last 14 1/3 innings -- all of them spanning his time as the closer.
Ryan Zimmerman went 0-for-4 Saturday night -- his second straight hitless night and an outing that made him 5-for-his-last-50. Then he admitted something, indeed, is still significantly amiss with his right shoulder. After the Nationals' 3-1 victory over the Orioles, manager Davey Johnson used the word "concerned" three times regarding Zimmerman and the inflammation in his right AC joint that already forced him to the disabled list once this season. Another disabled list stint is a consideration, as is a possible cortisone injection in the coming days.
At this point it seems relatively clear that the Nationals have one lineup for when they're facing right-handers and another for when they're facing left-handers. With left-hander Wei-Yin Chen on the mound today for the Baltimore Orioles, they'll be using their lineup against left-handers -- and that means Tyler Moore will be in it.
Davey Johnson holds a soft spot for Baltimore in his heart. He always will. He talks often -- and fondly -- about his days in Baltimore both as a player and as a manager. The second part didn't end well. But it hasn't hardened his feelings toward the team or the city. In his first visit (in an official capacity) in 15 years, Johnson looked out at the field at Camden Yards Friday afternoon and talked Baltimore, one more time.
As far as big steps go for Drew Storen in his rehab from April 11 surgery to remove a bone chip in his right elbow, he took one on Friday. For the first time since he shut things down in early April, Storen faced hitters.
The Nationals ticked off one more of their top 10 draft picks on Friday when they signed third-rounder Brett Mooneyham, a left-handed pitcher out of Stanford, for $428,500.
Coming to you live from Baltimore for the second round of the Battle of the Beltways and, if history is any guide, this one might feature a couple of home runs. Camden Yards is certainly a hitter's ballpark and when it's hot (my car said it was 97 degrees in Baltimore) like it is today, the ball flies.
Nationals manager Davey Johnson had seen enough of Chien-Ming Wang's struggles Tuesday night to know, one day later, that it was time to make a change in the rotation. Ross Detwiler will start Sunday in Baltimore and Wang will be moved to the bullpen to work on his delivery and mechanics.
Roughly an hour after Nationals manager Davey Johnson addressed Tuesday night's pine tar incident, Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon fired back. Johnson called the Ray's skipper a "guru" and suggested that he read the rulebook. Maddon responded to those remarks, and elaborated on his thoughts from the night before, in the Ray's dugout before Wednesday's game.
In his post-game press conference Tuesday night, Rays manager Joe Maddon said, among other things, that Nationals manager Davey Johnson checking reliever Joel Peralta's glove for what turned out to be "a significant amount" of pine tar was a "real cowardly move." You can read Maddon's full comments here. Johnson got his chance to respond to Maddon's comments this afternoon. Here's what he had to say:
After what turned into a pretty interesting 5-4 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday night, the Nationals have to win today to salvage the series against the Rays and avoid losing their second straight three-game set.
The eighth inning turned wild Tuesday night when Nationals manager Davey Johnson asked home plate umpire Tim Tschida to check on the glove of Tampa Bay reliever Joel Peralta. Peralta's glove was found to have a "significant amount" of pine tar on it, according to Tschida, and Peralta now faces an automatic suspension of an undetermined length. You can read about the whole incident right here, but I wanted to pass along some of the straight quotes from the post-game as well to get a feel for how heated this thing got, particularly on the Rays' side.
For much of the first two months of the season it seemed Nationals manager Davey Johnson's pre-game sessions with reporters would consist of exclusively injury updates. If it wasn't Michael Morse it was Drew Storen. If it wasn't Ryan Zimmerman it was Jayson Werth. If it wasn't Wilson Ramos it was Sandy Leon. If it wasn't Mark DeRosa it was Chad Tracy.