The grease boards, as he calls them, are stored in Washington Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo's office. The markers he uses on them have been worn out, replaced, and worn out again.
When the St. Louis Cardinals rolled into town Thursday they brought with them a reputation for offensive firepower. The only team in the National League the Washington Nationals had yet to face were supposed to bring a stiff test at the start of their longest homestand of the season.
Inside the comfort of the clubhouse, the Washington Nationals insist they know it won't last forever, that eventually they'll lose a game or two again. They stress that thinking they won't isn't an option because it can only lead to a complacency they show no signs of developing.
It was just after 11 a.m. Friday on the West Coast when Kurt Suzuki got the news. His time with the Oakland A's, the only professional organization he'd ever known, was over. The Washington Nationals were calling and they had a starting catching job waiting for him.
The Washington Nationals have done a lot of things right this season. But if they needed any clearer indication that the word is out on their inability to hold base runners, they got it with two outs in the fourth inning Tuesday night when Phillies pitcher Cliff Lee stole second base on Stephen Strasburg.
These are the nights Stephen Strasburg will probably most like to forget. Over the course of what's expected to be an illustrious career filled with jaw-dropping highlights, these won't be the games the Washington Nationals' ace looks back at to remember.
The pitcher that Jordan Zimmermann is now, the one he was Wednesday night at Nationals Park, is the one the Nationals have seen in him since the beginning.
Nine miles from Marlins Park is the working-class town of Hialeah where Gio Gonzalez grew up. So deep is the connection that the town's name is embroidered on his glove.
Andrelton Simmons gave Atlanta a chance. Michael Morse had a quick answer for Washington. Morse had four hits, including the go-ahead homer in the eighth inning after Washington had blown a four-run lead, and the Nationals beat the Braves 5-4 on Friday night.
For three days, the Washington Nationals reveled in all that Coors Field and Colorado's beleaguered pitching staff had to offer. They banged the ball all over the park, exploited the Rockies' strict pitch counts and showed that they could indeed be the offensive team they've been promising for much of the season's first half.
The sound it made off of Jesus Flores' bat was so clean. It was flush, and loud, and pure. One crack of the bat like that, it seemed, and the Washington Nationals' night of offensive misery at Camden Yards against Jason Hammel was over.
In the dugout, in the 12th inning Tuesday night at Nationals Park, as the clock crept toward midnight, Bryce Harper watched. He'd had a front-row seat an inning earlier when Elvin Ramirez, a one-time Washington Nationals' Rule 5 draftee, struck him out on four pitches — and more than one outside the zone.
Late Tuesday night, Washington Nationals bullpen coach Jim Lett looked to his left, and to his right, and saw only rows of empty chairs. In a 7-6, 12-inning win over the New York Mets that saw the Nationals empty their bullpen down to long reliever Ross Detwiler, Lett was a lonely man.