Mar 132011
 

Former prospect Jordan Zimmermann threw five scoreless innings as the Nationals pitchers, save for one, stifled the Marlins for a 5-1 win on Sunday afternoon.

Danny Espinosa was the sole prospect to start, but was once again hitless in three at-bats with a strikeout. He was also hit by a pitch, taking a spun-away shot to the helmet but remained in the game. Wilson Ramos came off the bench but struck out in his only at-bat.

Other notable prospects…

  • Eury Perez was 0-for-1 and got two putouts in the bottom of the ninth.
  • Chris Marrero was caught looking in his lone at-bat and played three error-free innings at first base.
  • Brian Broderick came on in relief of Henry Rodriguez (more later) and pitched 1⅔ innings with no hits, walks or strikeouts.
  • Steve Lombardozzi played the last two innings at 2B and had an assist.
  • Cole Kimball pitched a 1-2-3 ninth with two flyouts and a groundout to second base.

As aforementioned, Rodriguez came on in relief of Zimmermann and had trouble finding the plate, walking three in ⅓ of an inning and was charged for the sole Marlin run. He threw 23 pitches during the outing, and 15 were balls. The velocity was there but the command was not, as the pitches off the plate were in the high 90s while the pitches over the plate were in the low 90s.

With the loss, the Nats improve to 10-5 for the Spring. They return to Viera to host the Tigers tomorrow afternoon, a game which will only be “seen” via MLB Gameday.

  9 Responses to “Z-Dub Sharp As Nats Cruise To 5-1 Win”

  1. Its a re-run but this posting from Ben Goessling’s site seems apropos as worthy of a link here:

    After that play, one scout turned and repeated something he’d said about Espinosa earlier in the day: “Multiple All-Star Games.” The same scout predicted Espinosa would be the NL rookie of the year.

    http://www.masnsports.com/the_goessling_game/2011/03/a-nationals-marlins-update-with-thoughts-from-a-few-scouts.html

    • Thanks Peric. I know their not listening, but count me as someone who’s baffled by Espinosa STILL not at SS.
      I mean, c’mon!

      • I think that part of our culture is that we’re going to be loyal to veterans and established players. Desmond had a good enough season last year that the organization wants to be loyal to him and likes his leadership. I’m growing on the notion that Espinosa is likely to be the better defender. Also, they may be interested in solving this problem by moving Desmond at some point. (Wasn’t he a possible piece in earlier trades?) Desmond’s value is probably higher if he shows he can stick at short. Hoping Lombardozzi continues to prove the doubters wrong so that it’s easier to have the flexibility to move one of the shortstops and that the organization can retain guys like Cora in the minors for roster flexibility to help bridge between a veteran and some of the younger middle infielders that Rizzo likes to draft.

        I believe that Desmond gets the right to show that he can stick at short for now, but just like I’m warming to the notion of somebody other than Nyjer at center, I’m warming to the notion of moving Desmond. Personally, I’m almost at the point where I’d consider moving Desmond to center next year. He seems to track balls well and his arm would still be utilized. Seems like a waste of his arm to move him to second.

  2. Rodriguez’ outing was extremely discouraging for me. I feel he’s the centerpiece of the Willingham deal, and he doesn’t have options. We have too many guys at this point that are “stash” guys like the Rule 5ers and Rodriguez. Broderick seems to be pitching well. Do you keep Broderick and risk exposing Rodriguez to a DFA where he’d likely be picked up. If Rodriguez turns out to be this year’s Brian Bruney, Rizzo deserves to be roundly criticized for giving up Willingham for potential and not production.

    • SD, couldn’t agree more. I wish I was wrong, but the Willingham trade just looks more & more like a salary dump. Especially galling after Ted Lerner was just named the richest owner in baseball last week!

  3. I have no illusions that the swap will ever happen because it will be a tacit admission that the organization was wrong all along about Desmond. It just frustrates me because I’ve seen what both can do on defense and it’s a misuse of personnel, in my opinion.

    Part of what complicates things is actually Zimmerman. Desmond might actually be better suited at third because he’s quite good at making the “instinctive” play but that’s clearly not an option, and that’s how most organizations would solve the problem.

    I strongly suspect H-Rod will be put on the DL with a phantom injury so he can “rehab” at Syracuse. Broderick could conceivably make the club at the expense of Craig Stammen, but that’s an upcoming post for an off day or rainout.

    • Excellent thought on H-Rod. I always forget about the DL stash option when these situations come about. Yeah, I’ve thought for awhile that Stammen’s been in trouble. You look at the innings they’re giving in the spring, and you’ve got to believe his clock has about run out in this organization. Wish that there was some kind of Langerhans for Morse deal we could make on him.

    • Wow, is it Sue Dinem or Cynic, Al today. Riggleman said last year he felt Desmond could be a centerfielder. The situation there is still playing out so switching him there now would be a surprise. I also think that Lombardozzi may be the 2B in their future plans so next year may be the best time to switch Espinoza to SS.

      • Actually, Brian Oliver floated that idea (move Desmond to CF) at least a year or two before the ill-fated RF experiment. Desmond may just be this generation’s answer to Jose Offerman — or at least we can hope that he’ll get that good on offense.

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