In-Game 1st game of the Cardinals series, Yunel is back!

This series bookends the last day of August and the first days of September in St. Louis where the Nats have a crucial 3 game series.

The Cardinals bring their MLB best 84-46 record into this series, and as we know the Nats need to turn their 66-63 record into at least 68 or 69 wins before they leave St. Louis.  No pressure.

Do you want some good news or bad news? Well we already told you the Cardinals have the best record in the MLB as the bad news, and the good news is Gio has a 2-1 record against them in his career with a 1.85 record.  The Cardinals are on another run winning 7 of their last 8 games and finding consistency with rookie callups and some of their veterans.

John Lackey (RHP) pitches for the Cardinals.  The Nats have little experience against Lackey except for 1 game of data for some of the players, and the exception is Jayson Werth and Yunel Escobar.  Werth has 12 ABs with a .500 BA and Yunel Escobar has faced him 34 times with a .400 BA.  Ryan Zimmerman is 2-3, Ian Desmond 1-3, Lobaton is 1-3.

Lackey is a fastball and slider pitcher with the occassional slow curve at 78mph and a changeup that comes in at around 84mph.  Lackey has the 4-seam and sinker versions of the fastball and stays at 92mph.  His slider is his putaway pitch and has late break which gives him swing & miss on that pitch.  The key is hitting Lackey’s fastballs and finding holes if you swing over his sinker and hit it on the ground.

On 2 strikes Lackey will try to get you to chase inside, outside or below the zones as you can see and doesn’t go above the zone much.  He will throw you a “chase” slider outside the zone in 2 strikes.  The key is hitting his fastball before he can get to his slider.

By the way, Happy 80th birthday Frank Robinson!  Do you have an extra birthday wish or 2 for the Nats?

Here is the lineup:

  1. Werth LF
  2. Rendon 2B
  3. Harper RF
  4. RZ 1B
  5. Yuni 3B
  6. Desi SS
  7. Lobo C
  8. MAT CF
  9. Gio P

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364 Responses to In-Game 1st game of the Cardinals series, Yunel is back!

  1. scmargenau says:

    Absolutely horrible – as Charlie says. This is a reflection of bad managements. I’m very upset!!!😡😡😡😡😡

    Like

  2. “ELIAS: Since 1969, only 2 teams have come back to win a division after being 6.5 games back (or more) entering Sept.: ’78 Yankees, ’95 SEA”

    Might not be apples to apples with the season going into early October, but there is a chance.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. legnatsfan says:

    Last night’s loss was the most infuriating for me. I have not been as critical on MW as others until now. The loss was clearly on him. I really thought he would have learned from his mistakes last year in the playoffs but it’s clear that he has not. This was a playoff caliber game for us and he managed the same way with his best relievers and defenders sitting and watching as the ship was sinking. How can he continue managing the same way and expect different results? Rizzo will be very busy this offseason! I think we’ll see almost an entirely new BP with Pappelbon the only guarantee.

    Like

  4. I cant believe I am still so angry…

    Rizzo wont fire Matt. Pointless. As Rizzo then would be admitting that he may have made a mistake. And then that would open up the door to asking about other Rizzo ‘failures’ i.e. not acquiring another bat at the trade deadline, more BP help, etc.

    With that said – I love those people who now are saying that MW is a ‘scapegoat’ like some of his decisions (actually lack of) don’t play a part in what happens in the game. And then when you ask people, so what about ‘insert topic here’, the answer is, ‘Well, errrr, uhmmmm, he knows more about baseball than any of us combined.’ Love people like that…

    Like

  5. NatsLady says:

    Janssen didn’t have it last night. He wasn’t his usual hyper-twitchy self which says to me that, for whatever reason, he didn’t have the energy level he needs. That’s the kind of body language Williams and McCatty should be reading, along with the good contact the Cards were making.

    You have a two-run lead, a total gift from Matheny and Seagrist–who, believe it or not, “won” the game. Put up your best defense. Keep Danny (who had just pinch hit for Gio, if I recall) in the game and say “thankyouverymuch” to Escobar. Sub out Werth for den Dekker. Yes, call on Janssen, but tell the bullpen that Rivero, Storen and Treinen should all get up, walk around and stretch those rubber-band thingies.

    To me, this was a case (another case) where the game moved too fast for Williams. He simply didn’t expect to be presented with a two-run lead in the seventh inning and he didn’t have his plan ready. That’s a lesson he’ll learn, but at this point, it’s very, very difficult to wait for him to catch up.

    Liked by 4 people

    • stoatva says:

      this was a case (another case) where the game moved too fast for Williams.

      This is, verbatim, what I’ve been grumbling to my section-mates at the ballpark for well over a year.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m starting to come around to that way of thinking.

        Like

        • needanatsfix says:

          I am not sure that replacing MW will create a big difference in W’s and L’s, but it would me more enjoyable to watch a team that seems to be talented AND can play good fundamental baseball. A lot of that is on MW as the manager.

          One thing that always bothers me in professional sports is when fans say “get rid of player XYZ or fire the coach/manager” without any consideration of who is available as a replacement. I think MW could be a good MLB manager some day, but am coming around to the idea that he needs to learn elsewhere. Who might be available that would be better? Bud Black is out there. He managed the Pads and has initials BB….which seems to have worked out well for the Giants with their manager. 😃

          Like

          • You’re right, is Gardenhire or Bud Black the answer. Last night seemed to be part of the bullpen strategic shortcomings that you’d hope MW had mastered where you go situation vs handing an inning to a reliever.

            Like

    • “You have a two-run lead, a total gift from Matheny and Seagrist”

      An absolute gift

      Like

  6. stoatva says:

    Astounding. Chavez Ravine looks little more than half full, maybe less, for pennant race game against Giants, of all teams. It’ll probably go in the books as a sellout anyway, but row upon row of empty seats everywhere you look.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. conatsguy says:

    On a positive note, well done RZ. Go ahead HR, and great throw to second to start that DP. A triple away from the cycle. Can’t ask for more than that!

    Ghost, I’ve been meaning to ask you, how many “questionable” commenters have you had to deal with on a daily basis.. Just wondering😎

    Like

  8. stoatva says:

    From 9/4/14 article about Bo Porter’s firing: Most GMs these days hire a “yes man” to be the manager, as managers become more of an extension of the front office and less independent thinkers.. Which is just one reason we won’t see him here either.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. stoatva says:

    Have to say, this is the one I thought we had little chance to win going in, though for completely different reasons than I expected.

    Liked by 1 person

    • NatsLady says:

      I felt the same, Gio v Lackey didn’t look good for the good guys. But Gio pitched reasonably well (a so-called Quality Start), keeping our boys in the game. Matheny, for whatever reason, didn’t manage well, and Seagrist pitched terribly. I HATE to return gifts like that!

      Like

  10. And Texas is right, how does Casey not cover 1st…

    I’m done. Later.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Fwiw, Gio did a decent job tonight… he gave what was expected, actually more.

    The win was there. Last 3 losses, the wins have been there…

    Like

  12. stoatva says:

    Eagerly awaiting tonight’s episode of Matty and the Pussycats.

    “Matt, how disappointing is this?”
    “Matt, how awesome was Zim’s home run?”
    “Matt, are you buying lunch for us tomorrow?”

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Section 222 says:

    MMN is 26. Looking bleak my friends.

    Like

  14. If I wasn’t a fan of the Nats I would think this was a great game…

    I will not rain on any parade who wants to keep hope alive but I’m looking forward to the offseason to what acquisition will happen thru out the line up and the staff.

    Of course I have my hopes.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. stoatva says:

    If you’re going to watch matt post game I’d suggest removing any heavy objects you might be tempted to throw at the TV.

    Like

  16. Section 222 says:

    I think that’s on Werth Rendon, as Ray said. Both runners needed to be cautious and the ball bounced right back to Molina. Remember, if they go to 2nd and 3rd, they take bat out of Bryce’s hands.

    Like

  17. abqnatsfan says:

    Werth hung Rendon out on that. And with the tying run, in Harper, at the plate. Werth hadn’t distinguished himself since the 7th.

    Like

  18. Ray, I disagree… think that’s on Jayson..

    Think it’s too much to ask Ryan to do it again. I expect a DP here.

    Like

  19. stoatva says:

    /cue Twilight Zone music

    Like

  20. texnat1 says:

    Don’t tell me this is a well managed team

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Gonats says:

    Do the Nats have the greatest 9th inning comeback in their history for tonight?

    Like

  22. abqnatsfan says:

    Unless the Nats come back in the 9th, they will be 2-19 in their last 21 at Busch. Their 7th was bad enough to lose to anybody, but still, wow.

    Like

  23. Playing the best team in baseball… while your post season hopes are going down the drain…

    And play it like you always do.

    #FireMattWilliams

    Liked by 1 person

  24. stoatva says:

    Not to pick on Turner, but that shows the arm he doesn’t have to play SS, I’d say.

    Like

  25. stoatva says:

    Maybe Matt needs to get back on the roids. His depressive affect is rubbing off on the team.

    They don’t test managers, do they? Go for it!

    Liked by 1 person

  26. abqnatsfan says:

    5 runs in the 7th. All scored with two outs. Nats had the lead. How does that happen? Bad managing.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. texnat1 says:

    My hope is that the Nats get a new manager with substantial experience from outside of rizzo’s comfort zone. As good as he has been at building the roster, he has been about that bad in picking managers.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. stoatva says:

    Cishek and Rosenthal. End of story.

    Like

  29. This now looks like a clinic by the Cardinals. Wong annoys me.

    Like

  30. stoatva says:

    What will you do with the money you’re saving on postseason tickets?

    Like

  31. stoatva says:

    Maybe the better double switch was in left.

    I think I just lost my twenty five bucks.

    Like

  32. None of this happens…. none of it… if the lefties were in there earlier….

    Like

  33. Section 222 says:

    Wow. Bullpen meltdown. Sad.

    Like

  34. texnat1 says:

    Williams should be fired for this. It’s the same thing over and over. Just brain dead.

    Liked by 1 person

  35. natslive says:

    Janssen couldn’t get it done….gives up a hit to Mr PED

    Liked by 1 person

  36. Just unbelievable. That broken bat nubber cost him 2 runs.

    Like

  37. And Matt sits right there with his dumb a$$… I hate him. I absolutely hate him.

    This Team deserves to fail as long as his inept ass is the manager.

    Liked by 1 person

  38. stoatva says:

    You get the feeling that Matt knows he won’t get fired for losing as long as he pushes the buttons Rizzo has given him to punch.

    Like

  39. I am so livid right now… I HATE HATE HATE pitchers owning innings…

    This should have been match up baseball here… if nats lose this game, I am blaming MW and this inning.

    Livid.

    Liked by 1 person

  40. texnat1 says:

    Werth in no doubles when a single scores a run. Williams continually inept at bullpen management.

    Like

  41. conatsguy says:

    Boy that was a reach “hit”

    Like

  42. stoatva says:

    cardinals baseball. They bring up these kids right.

    Like

  43. My heart is in this game like it’s October….

    Like

  44. I’m going to lose it if Jansen gives up a hit….

    Like

  45. natslive says:

    Throw strikes

    Like

  46. texnat1 says:

    Cardinals announcers surprised that Nats not bringing in a lefty to face carpenter

    Liked by 1 person

  47. Nats need a doubleplay here.

    Like

  48. conatsguy says:

    Glad for Gio. Off the hook & chance for the W.
    Janssen has to make that play.
    Blue still stiffing our pitchers

    Like

  49. stoatva says:

    Busch league umpiring.

    Like

  50. Why in the hell is Thornton or Rivero not in here… like seriously… why….

    Matt, what are you doing…

    Liked by 1 person

  51. texnat1 says:

    Goodness this cardinal team gets some breaks

    Like

  52. stoatva says:

    That. Cannot. Happen.

    Like

  53. stoatva says:

    Our three closers need to step up.

    Like

  54. Where is Rivero and Thornton for these lefties?

    Like

  55. natslive says:

    Need Casey to have a clean inning here

    Like

  56. stoatva says:

    Like

  57. Gonats says:

    Even Carp didn’t immediately go into his SEE YOU LATER on RZ’s blast. The way Heyward went back I thought he had a play on that.

    Like

  58. scmargenau says:

    Zimmerman!!!huge!

    Liked by 1 person

  59. stoatva says:

    Hope the bullpen boys are feeling it tonight.

    Like

  60. veejh says:

    hOLY moly. that was so massive. I just went apeshit in my living room. wow.

    Like

  61. Glory, glory…. that was awesome!?!?!?!?!?

    Liked by 2 people

  62. natslive says:

    Clutch RZ!

    Liked by 1 person

  63. YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSZZZZZZZZZZZSSSSSS

    Liked by 1 person

  64. stoatva says:

    Double Jaysus!!!

    Like

  65. veejh says:

    Huge moments in this season right now.

    THAT WAS INSIDE!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  66. I will admit… I feel like this is an October game….

    Like

  67. Do you let RZim swing 3-0

    Like

  68. stoatva says:

    Six walks by the Cards. Did you ever?

    Like

  69. Gonats says:

    Ryan Zimmerman has the perfect matchup.

    Liked by 1 person

  70. That looked like an intentional walk. Like they wanted no parts of Bryce….

    Like

  71. Situational hitting is a fail… Jayson and Anthony have to move him over….

    Why no steal call….

    Like

  72. veejh says:

    The time is now. If this team has the balls to win this division it starts right now. No more excuses. This is it. Get it done. I only expect base hits and RBIs for the rest of the game.

    Like

  73. Hope Danny is looking to steal here….

    Like

  74. conatsguy says:

    Nice AB Danny 😎

    Like

  75. Gonats says:

    Nats must capitalize on the leadoff walk.

    Like

  76. stoatva says:

    At 93 Siegrist the easy thrower of the bunch.

    Like

  77. texnat1 says:

    Pretty good performance from gio. Bad luck in the 4th. Bryce should have had the fly ball, and then two hard luck ground balls.

    Like

  78. texnat1 says:

    Lackey has no control at the moment and both desi and Taylor first pitch swinging. Could have been a big inning.

    Like

  79. WHY IN THE *BLEEP* DO YOU ALL KEEP SWINGING AT THIS FIRST PITCH WHEN LACKEY HAS SHOWN THAT HE IS WILLING TO WALK YOU… ARE YOU FRICKIN PAYING ATTENTION.

    Liked by 1 person

  80. Arghhhhhhhhhhhhh….. why desi…. why…

    Like

  81. stoatva says:

    I’ll take that run, frankly.

    Like

  82. senators69 says:

    Others may have certainly noted/said this (pardon me if this is so), but Gio is obviously on a slow move down. A look at his yearly stats shows it (even though he was good in July of this year). His last 4 games (which include this one) have been just real ugly.

    According to Baseball-Reference, he is signed through next year, with a team option for 2017 and a 2018 vesting option if he pitched 180 innings in 2017.

    Not sure what his issue is, but I certainly think/hope the Nats know. At this rate, I’m just hoping he’s serviceable in 2016, if he is still with the Nats. Although serviceable is not the level a contending team needs.

    Like

  83. nats128 says:

    Not sure the Nats will have many better opportunities than last inning with 2 on with Brcye up and Lackey missing spots.

    Like

  84. natslive says:

    Good play Gio on that throw from Rendon

    Liked by 1 person

  85. I don’t remember Bryce last home run…

    Like

  86. stoatva says:

    I understand that Taylor wasn’t even supposed to be in the majors until tomorrow, but he has to get a clue on those breaking pitches.

    Like

  87. Nats bats were going to have to score more than 1 anyway….

    Come on guys, pick Gio up…

    Like

  88. stoatva says:

    Fortunate to get out of that with three.

    Like

  89. stoatva says:

    single single single single single single single
    Where have we seen this before?

    Like

  90. legnatsfan says:

    Curse of the 4th inning for Gio.

    Like

  91. Another terrible terrible Terrible pitch…. what in the hell….

    Like

  92. texnat1 says:

    Harper was positioned too deep for Molina, and then took a bad route.

    Like

  93. stoatva says:

    Don’t see the Cardinals leave many runs on the table.

    Like

  94. Gio gets his groundball but hit to where Rendon was not.

    Like

  95. Terrible pitch to Molina….

    Like

  96. Thought Anthony would have charged that.
    .
    But im still pissed at the walk…

    Liked by 1 person

  97. nats128 says:

    Gio throws a good pitch to Heyward and gets a nubber single on him. Hold them down Gio. Stay in control.

    Like

  98. Gonats says:

    Important for Gio to go after these guys in 0-2 counts.

    Like

  99. texnat1 says:

    Cards tv guys talking about how they are skipping martinez’s start tomorrow. Good break for the Nats.

    Like

  100. stoatva says:

    Oh yeah. They were ready for that one. Nice DP.

    Liked by 1 person

  101. NICEEEEEEEE….. that was a great throw by Ryan…. no panic by Desi…

    Nice DP….

    Like

  102. nats128 says:

    Leadoff walks cant happen Gio and to a lefty really cant happen. Guy hitting .217

    Liked by 1 person

  103. natslive says:

    Let’s go Zim

    Like

  104. Gio with the old saying “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again”. Kept trying that curveball on Wong and finally got him.

    Like

  105. unkyd59 says:

    I’d love to hang here… miss you guys… But it’s too much like work, reading up from the bottom, with replies on comments… I’ll be over there…

    Like

    • stoatva says:

      See, I love the most recent first sorting. When you arrive late you have to scroll through, regardless, if you want to read all the comments. But once you’re up to date, not having to scroll all the way down every time you refresh is great. As far as new comments nested as replies… no difference.

      Liked by 2 people

    • I agree, it’s a little cumbersome. The new site will have the comment box at top and sort features to your liking on newest or oldest and I think the other choice is most popular.

      Like

  106. Gonats says:

    Jonny Gomes to the Royals. I wonder if he is going there as a pitcher (snark)

    Like

  107. Yeah…. I thought Desi would have crushed that fat pitch too.

    Like

  108. Can I get 5 more innings of that, Gio, please?

    Liked by 1 person

  109. scmargenau says:

    wow, that was close! i was sure they had, but teplay showed safe. 🙂

    Like

  110. Btw – I wouldn’t mind if the Nats somehow got Jayson Heyward….

    Like

  111. nats128 says:

    Great camera work and slide by Bryce and the ump got it right.

    Like

  112. Strikes Gio…. strikes….

    Liked by 1 person

  113. A quick unearned run to give the Nats the lead. We will take it and I know MrsB didn’t like first ball swinging by Escobar.

    Like

  114. natslive says:

    Didn’t like the send but it worked out thanks to Harper

    Like

  115. OMG…. I don’t know that he is safe… but dang….

    Like

  116. What was on that baseball that Bryce just hit to Wong. Wong was wrong. E4

    Like

  117. I cant imagine the post season without the Giants…

    Like

  118. conatsguy says:

    Nice picture for this thread Ghost!

    This series is huge. Hope coaches and clubhouse leaders have this team hungry tonite! GYFNG!

    Like

  119. Sup party people…. was wayyyyy too busy today to get on…. hope everyone had a productive day…

    So, I’m crazy, becuz I got a feeling, we win 2 of 3… and no this has nothing to do with post season aspirations but just a feeling.

    Think Gio will be effective today in 5. Here’s to the Nats Bats going.

    Like

  120. Gonats says:

    I hope we see good Gio tonight. Phil Wood used the term “pitch efficient”.

    Like

  121. Steady Eddie says:

    I like Yunel hitting fifth. Zim is far more of a power threat but Yunel is a classic dependable keep the line moving kind of hitter, so if the top of the order gets on a roll in any inning, he’s the least likely guy to deflate it other than Bryce.

    Like

  122. NatsLady says:

    Like

  123. soonernat says:

    So with 33 games left…how many do we need to win? 20? 23? And how many do we need to take from the Mets?

    Like

  124. nats128 says:

    Lackey is having another good year and somehow has the best ERA of his entire career. It seems like you can get 2 runs against him, maybe 3 if you can put together a few hits in a row.

    Gio really needs to be on top of his game.

    Like

  125. stoatva says:

    That Gio stat must not include postseason.

    Like

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