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MLB Team Report - Washington Nationals - INSIDE PITCH
It was a special moment for reliever Tanner Roark. After being called up early in the week, the right-hander made his major league debut in the fifth inning of a critical game against the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday in D.C.
Roark tossed two shutout innings, allowing just one run. He admitted to feeling the jitters pitching for the first time in front of such a big crowd and, of course, in the majors.
"(The nerves) were up there," Roark said. "As soon as the (Jayson Werth) home run went out, I was up in the bullpen and they came even more, you know? Nerves were high. First big league debut. It was great. It's exciting, very nerve-wracking. All in all, I'll take it."
Right next to his locker was right-handed reliever Ryan Mattheus, who gave up two runs in one inning, on one hit, one walk and one strikeout. The Braves won the game 6-3, his first loss of the season. His ERA is 9.31 in his last 10 outings.
"All three of those games were tough, but the way we lost that one (Wednesday), especially when I was out there, it's tough to swallow," Mattheus said. "We came back and tied the game, Jayson (Werth) scoring that run there, I'd have loved to go out there and hold them at 3-3. But I made a bad pitch to (Andrelton) Simmons, actually a bad decision to throw the pitch. You know that's my third-best pitch.
"If I had to do it again, I wouldn't throw a slider right there. But you live and you learn, but that's going to be a tough one to swallow."
It is never easy to pitch in the big leagues. Mattheus knows that. Roark did very well in his debut, but it was the first time major league hitters had seen him. They will adapt to his stuff.
Now, sitting right next to each other in the clubhouse, Mattheus can tell Roark what to expect down the road and how to get ready.
MLB Team Report - Washington Nationals - NOTES, QUOTES
STREAK: Won one
PAST 10 GAMES: 4-6
NEXT: Phillies (Cliff Lee, 10-5, 3.13) at Nationals (Taylor Jordan, 1-3, 3.76)
--RHP Dan Haren (7-11) continued his resurgence; pitching seven innings in a 9-2 win over Philadelphia. He improved to 3-2 with a 2.43 earned run average in six starts since coming off the disabled list July 8. Prior to his stint on the DL, he'd given up 19 homers in 15 starts. He's allowed just two in his last six. "On the mound I've been reminding myself pre-pitch to keep the ball down, especially in certain situations, where before it seemed like I was getting burned trying to be a little bit too aggressive in the zone," Haren said.
--RHP Ross Ohlendorf (shoulder inflammation) will make a minor league rehab start Saturday at Triple-A Syracuse. Manager Davey Johnson said Ohlendorf, eligible to come off the disabled list Aug. 16, will be limited to four innings, 65 pitches.
--1B Adam LaRoche was slated for a night off according to manager Davey Johnson, but Chad Tracy was scratched with a stiff neck. LaRoche, who came in 0-for-15 against Phillies left-hander John Lannon, struck out in the first, but then singled in a run and doubled and scored in his next two at-bats in the 9-2 win. "I knew I didn't see him well, then today I heard somebody say I was 0-for-20 or something against him," LaRoche said. "So I figured the odds were in my favor. I was due for something." He's now hit safely in six straight games.
--RHP Taylor Jordan (1-3, 3.76) opposes Philadelphia on Saturday. The rookie pitched at Philadelphia July 9, taking the loss. He went 5 2/3 innings, allowing four runs, three earned, on eight hits. Jordan is coming off his first major league win, a six-inning effort against the Mets in which he allowed one run on five hits and struck out seven without walking a batter.
--2B Anthony Rendon homered, walked and scored twice in Washington's 9-2 win over Philadelphia. Rendon has hit in seven of his last eight games (.308, 8-for-26, two home runs HR, five RBIs) after batting .163 (17-for-104, three home runs, eight RBIs) in his previous 27. Rendon also made a nice diving stop and turned a Dominic Brown grounder up the middle from a single into a fielder's choice in the seventh.
--CF Denard Span snapped an 0-for-20 skid with a two-run single in the fifth inning of Friday's 9-2 win against Philadelphia. Hitting just .259 overall for the season, the single improved Span's average with two outs to .303 (37-for-122), according to the Nationals. Both his home runs have come with two outs.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "On the mound I've been reminding myself prepitch to keep the ball down, especially in certain situations, where before it seemed like I was getting burned trying to be a little bit too aggressive in the zone." -- RHP Dan Haren, who surrendered 19 homers before his stint on the disabled list and just two since his return, including none in a 9-2 win over Philadelphia on Friday.
MLB Team Report - Washington Nationals - ROSTER REPORT
--RHP Ross Ohlendorf (right shoulder inflammation) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to Aug. 1. Manager Davey Johnson reported Ohlendorf looked good throwing in side sessions Aug. 6 and Aug. 8. He will begin a rehab assignment Aug. 10.
--LHP Ross Detwiler (lower back strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to July 4, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on Aug. 6. A specialist discovered a disk problem during an examination in Los Angeles on July 24. Detwiler received an injection to help with the problem, but it is possible he won't return this season.
--RHP Christian Garcia (partial tear in forearm tendon) was hurt Feb. 21. He went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 22. He began a rehab assignment with Double-A Harrisburg on May 31, and he moved his rehab assignment to Triple-A Syracuse on June 8. His rehab was shut down June 14 due to shoulder soreness. He returned to rehab games for Syracuse in July before injuring his hamstring. There is no timetable for his return.
RHP Stephen Strasburg
LHP Gio Gonzalez
RHP Jordan Zimmermann
RHP Dan Haren
RHP Taylor Jordan
RHP Rafael Soriano (closer)
RHP Ryan Mattheus
RHP Tyler Clippard
RHP Craig Stammen
LHP Fernando Abad
LHP Ian Krol
RHP Tanner Roark
1B Adam LaRoche
2B Anthony Rendon
SS Ian Desmond
3B Ryan Zimmerman
INF Chad Tracy
INF Steve Lombardozzi
LF Bryce Harper
CF Denard Span
RF Jayson Werth
OF Roger Bernadina
OF Scott Hairston