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By Steve King
Topic - Chien-Ming Wang
Ramon Santiago singled home a run, stole second and scored on a wild pitch to help the Cincinnati Reds beat the Colorado Rockies 3-2 on Saturday.
Chien-Ming Wang, who couldn't resurrect his career with the Nationals or Blue Jays, will get another shot after signing with the Reds.
If there was one image the Washington Nationals may remember from a game they would surely love to forget, it was of Carlos Beltran. Standing on the top step of the St. Louis Cardinals' dugout after his second two-run homer of the game, Beltran reveled in a curtain call while Chien-Ming Wang stood emotionless on the mound.
Michael Gonzalez was a member of the Washington Nationals for just more than two weeks when he got Ross Detwiler's ear in the bullpen. Detwiler had made four appearances out of the bullpen after Chien-Ming Wang had bumped him from the rotation, and he'd gotten mixed results.
Hitting Chien-Ming Wang's sinker used to be like taking a swipe at a bowling ball.
Maybe it's a cruel fact for Chien-Ming Wang that he has the misfortune of struggling in one of the best rotations in the major leagues. Maybe it's by contrast that Wang, the most veteran of the staff and its second-highest-paid member, has his issues magnified because of the four who come before him.
A sinker, when thrown with the velocity and weight that Chien-Ming Wang can throw it, is a devastating pitch. Hitters compare it to a bowling ball, they find it impossible to lift and they pound their bats into the ground on the way back to the dugout almost as hard as the balls they roll over hit the infield.
It won't be until Tuesday or Wednesday, but at some point this week, Ross Detwiler will take the walk from the Washington Nationals' dugout to their bullpen. After nine starts, six exceptional and three mediocre, Detwiler's current stay in the starting rotation is over.
Davey Johnson's gait Friday night was a bit slower than usual, the Washington Nationals manager dealing with a lingering toe injury. For Ross Detwiler, it just meant he had longer to stare at the man who came to end his night.
Ross Detwiler just stood on the back of the mound and stared. His mouth slightly agape, his jaw askew, he seethed. For almost the entirety of Nick Markakis' home run trot, Detwiler glared at the right center field seats.
The Washington Nationals have figured out, at least for now, the place for Chien-Ming Wang. When the right-hander is ready to come off the disabled list and return to the active roster on or before May 27, the Nationals will pitch him out of the bullpen, allowing their major league-best rotation to remain intact.
Chien-Ming Wang stood on the bullpen mound at Nationals Park on Wednesday afternoon, going through his methodical motion under the supervision of Washington Nationals pitching coach Steve McCatty.
At one of the Washington Nationals' minor league affiliates on Monday, right-hander Chien-Ming Wang will take the mound and begin a rehab assignment. Wang, who strained his left hamstring mid-way through spring training, will be allowed 30 days to make rehab starts before the Nationals have to add him to the active roster. They don't anticipate him needing that long.
Nationals manager Davey Johnson confirmed Monday what was assumed since Chien-Ming Wang tumbled over first base 11 days ago and strained his left hamstring: John Lannan is his No. 5 starter.
With Jordan Zimmermann's four scoreless innings Saturday afternoon, the Washington Nationals completed their third full turn through their starting rotation this spring.
"I am very happy to be in the major league camp," Wang said. "I mixed in more changeups and change of speeds. The whole spring I've been working on the changeup and curveball."
"I don't try to put my best foot forward when we're down," he said, acknowledging as much.