Results tagged ‘ Livan Hernandez ’
Washington Nationals (30-21) at Philadelphia Phillies (26-24)
RHP Tanner Roark [3-4, 2.71] | RHP Jeremy Hellickson [4-3, 3.97]
Monday, May 30 l Game #52 / Road # 26 l Citizens Bank Park l Philadelphia, P.A. l 7:05 P.M.
Television: MASN l Radio: 106.7 The Fan & Nationals Radio Network
ON THE ROAD AGAIN…
The Nationals open a three-city, nine-game, 11-day road trip to Philadelphia, Cincinnati and Chicago (White Sox) on Monday night against the Phillies…The trek is the longest (by days) the Nationals will make this season, matching the final regular-season trip of the year, to Atlanta, Miami, and Pittsburgh.
- The Nationals have played to a 15-10 (.600) record on the road thus far this season, the third-best mark in the NL, behind only Chicago (17-8, .680) and San Francisco (16-9, .640).
GRAND IN A PINCH
With the bases loaded in the seventh inning on Sunday afternoon against the St. Louis Cardinals, Nationals manager Dusty Baker summoned Jayson Werth as a pinch hitter against LHP Dean Kiekhefer…Werth smashed the second pitch he saw 428 feet into straightaway center field for the first pinch-hit grand slam of his career.
- The home run was the sixth grand slam of Werth’s career and his fourth career pinch-hit home run…It was Werth’s first pinch-hit home run since Sept. 20, 2007.
- It was also just the second pinch-hit grand slam in Nationals history (2005-present), joining Justin Maxwell, who clubbed the first on Sept. 11, 2007 at the Florida Marlins.
Earning the win in the Nationals’ 10-2 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday, Nationals RHP Stephen Strasburg extended his winning streak to a franchise record (Nationals/Expos) 12 games, dating to Sept. 15, 2015…The record, which is among starting pitchers, surpassed the 11-game winning streaks of RHP Livan Hernandez (4/4-7/1/05) and RHP Dennis Martinez (5/9-7/29/89).
- In addition, Strasburg’s 9-0 record to start a season topped the 1997 8-0 start of Hall of Fame RHP Pedro Martinez (4/15-5/23/97) for a new franchise record (Nationals/Expos).
- The Nationals are 15-0 in Strasburg’s last 15 starts (also dating to Sept. 15, 2015)…The 15 straight team wins is also a franchise record (Nationals/Expos), and is the second-longest active streak in MLB (CHI RHP Jake Arrietta, 23 games).
FEELING RIGHT AT HOME
Nationals OF Bryce Harper returns to Philadelphia Monday night riding a six-game home run streak (7 HR) at Citizens Bank Park…When the Nationals visited Philly in April, Harper joined Ernie Banks (1955) as the only visiting players to homer in six straight games IN Philadelphia.
- In 31 career games at Citizens Bank Park, Harper is now hitting .325 with four doubles, three triples, 11 home runs, 23 RBI,12 walks, 21 runs scored and four stolen bases.
- Harper also tied the MLB record for any visiting player at any stadium with his sixth straight HR game at CBP…Via the Elias Sports Bureau, the most recent player with HRs six straight road games at one venue was MIA OF Giancarlo Stanton at Coors Field (2011-2012).
April 14, 2005 – In the first Major League game played in Washington D.C. since September 30, 1971, the Nationals beat the Diamondbacks at RFK Stadium, 5-3. President George W. Bush threw out the ceremonial first pitch after receiving the ball from Joe Grzenda, the former Washington Senators reliever who threw the final pitch in Senators’ history. Livan Hernandez earned the win, allowing three earned runs on three hits in 8.1 innings of work. Vinny Castilla hit his first home run of the season, a two-run shot in the sixth inning.
Let me start by stating that things could not be better here in Viera. The weather is wonderful, the workouts are crisp and the results have been encouraging. Yes, a team’s Grapefruit League winning percentage can, at times, be misleading, but winning games is always better than the alternative.
Seven wins, four losses and a tie. But what is most encouraging is how Manager Matt Williams has them playing the game. I love the aggressive base running. Taking an extra base. How fantastic was it to see Danny Espinosa score from second base on Saturday on a dribbler back to the pitcher? This brand of baseball really is infectious.
Fifteen home runs in 12 games. Only five allowed. That’s a good ratio.
Strong offensive starts from stalwarts like Ian Desmond (.286, 2 HR, 3 RBI), Adam LaRoche (2 HR, 4 RBI), Wilson Ramos (.474, HR, 10 RBI) and Ryan Zimmerman (.389, HR, 2 RBI) among others.
And many of our young players are making their marks. Zach Walters is hitting .615 with four extra-base hits and five RBI. He is as hot as anyone. Brian Goodwin and Michael A. Taylor have each made memorable catches in the outfield. Matt Skole hit .357 and four of his five hits went for extra bases before he was assigned to Minor League camp earlier this week so that he can get additional at-bats.
- I have not even mentioned the pitching. There truly are too many to name, but I’ll risk mentioning three standouts: Taylor Jordan (team-leading 11 strikeouts), Jerry Blevins (3.2 hitless innings) and A.J. Cole (6.2 scoreless innings).
- Forgive me if I think it is 2005 all over again watching Jamey Carroll and Luis Ayala perform admirably as they battle for roster spots. Jamey’s approach at the plate (.333 OBP), base running and defensive versatility are all a real plus. Meanwhile, Luis can throw a strike whenever he needs to. He has that same veteran savvy gene our friend Livan Hernandez had during his playing days.
- And Matt Williams? What’s not to like? Crisp, precise and purposeful baseball usually yields wins. I love what Matt brings to our dugout and clubhouse. I especially like how our team has taken to his aggressive nature.
- I was pleased to see President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Mike Rizzo sign Michael Gonzalez to a Minor League deal last weekend. Gonzalez was a big part of our bullpen’s success in 2012 and there are very few southpaw relievers who can match his experience in tight situations. Welcome back Michael!
- I just counted. Only three of the club’s 18 errors have been committed by players who were “regulars” in Washington last season. And one of those miscues was charged to Mr. Perfect, Denard Span! Remember, Denard did not commit an error last season. As I have said before, he should have won a Gold Glove!
- I’d like to thank all of our fans in Central Florida, but especially those from our local area on the Space Coast (Viera, Melbourne and Rockledge). The crowds for the Cardinals and Yankees games in the last week were the two largest we have ever enjoyed hosting.
- As for our fans from back home, I’ve had quite a few friends remark upon arrival in Viera about the significant pockets of Nationals fans on their flights from DC to Orlando. It’s hard to ignore all the smiles and Curly W shirts, sweaters and hats. It is great to see so many of our fans catching on to just how special Spring Training is.
Until next time …
I hope everyone is dealing well with this cold and wintry week here in the Nation’s Capital. When it gets cold like this, I usually calculate the days remaining until pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training (21 days!). This week is a bit different as we are just hours away from NatsFest.
- Just as a reminder, NatsFest is on Saturday, January 25, 2014 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center. New venue. We hope you can join us. I am so excited to welcome Matt Williams and an impressive roster of players to DC. Stephen Strasburg, Bryce Harper, Jayson Werth, Gio Gonzalez, Tyler Clippard, et al. Come early, stay warm, talk baseball.
- We are also expecting a special visit from arguably our most beloved Nationals alum, … Livan Hernandez. Livan, who threw the first pitch in the history of the Nationals, completed his 17-year big league career in 2012 with 178 wins, 44 of which came as a member of the Nationals. It will be fantastic to sit down and catch up with Livan.
- Speaking of Livan, it will be fun to have another inaugural-season National in camp with us upon arrival in Viera. In case you missed it, we signed infielder Jamey Carroll earlier this month and he’ll be competing for a spot on Matt Williams’ bench. Jamey also played for the Expos, so he should have some interesting perspective on how far this organization has come as we enter our 10th season in Washington.
- As we reach the late stages of the offseason, I think it is worth remembering that most of Mike Rizzo’s key moves came quite early: Doug Fister, Nate McLouth, Jerry Blevins. Mike and his crew are still hard at work searching for the right fits. Always looking to improve.
- We recently signed four-year Player Development Contracts with both Triple-A Syracuse and Double-A Harrisburg. Through the years, we have really valued our relationships with the Chiefs, Senators and their respective fan bases. There is a sense of organizational satisfaction in being able to establish roots in both Syracuse and Harrisburg.
- I would like to offer my deepest condolences to the family and friends of Frank Ceresi, who passed away recently. For those that are not aware, Frank played an integral role in developing the art program that we collectively enjoy at Nationals Park. He was an enormous baseball/Nationals fan and he will be sorely missed.
I hope to see everyone on Saturday at NatsFest.
Alright, alright, so we admit we’re not actually comparing Washington D.C. and Viera to London and Paris, even if Viera does sound vaguely French (it’s actually Slovak). Besides, in our scenario, it was the best of times for Nats fans in both cities. At 10:00 this morning, single game tickets went on sale for the most anticipated season in Nationals history, bringing fans out to the ballpark for the first time since last fall. Meanwhile, the Nationals played their best all-around game of the spring to date, shutting out the visiting Houston Astros by a count of 8-0.
First to D.C., where fans expressed their excitement for the beginning of the 2012 season. With the home opener just 34 days away, here’s what fans were saying as they waited in line to get their tickets:
“I can’t wait to see all the talent come together.” – Andrew P.
“This is the most optimistic I’ve ever been.” – Rick P.
“This is the biggest year for D.C. baseball.” – Tommy V.
Needless to say, Nationals fans understand what is going on with this team right now. If you haven’t had a chance to pick up your tickets yet, make sure you hop online and grab them soon, especially for the big matchups with the Yankees and Phillies.
Now, back to Viera. They may have played together for a couple of seasons, but Livan Hernandez can’t be too happy with Ryan Zimmerman after today’s game. Not only did the Nationals third baseman take Livo deep in the first inning, he literally knocked him out of the game with a rocket comebacker off the veteran righty’s shin in the bottom of the third. After a short discussion with the training staff, Hernandez exited the game in favor of Lucas Harrell.
Zimmerman had a nice game, hitting the ball hard all three times at the plate. He singled home Anthony Rendon in his third and final plate appearance with a solid line drive to right field.
Meanwhile, Edwin Jackson continued to impress in his second start of the spring, allowing just two ground ball singles in four shutout innings, striking out three. He has now tossed six scoreless frames – all against the Astros – allowing just three hits over that span. Ross Detwiler followed up by retiring all nine batters he faced, also striking out three.
The offense came alive as the game wore on, plating two runs in the fifth, three in the sixth and one in the seventh. When the day was done, Washington had piled up its highest run total of the spring, while allowing just three hits in the shutout.
Off to Jupiter (the city, not the planet) tomorrow evening for our first look at the new Miami Marlins. Here are the Nationals results to date:
vs. Georgetown (exhibition) – W, 3-0
@ Houston – L, 3-1
vs. Houston – L, 10-2
@ New York (NL) – W, 3-1
@ Atlanta – W, 5-2
vs. St. Louis – T, 3-3
vs. Houston – W, 8-0
Overall Record: 3-2-1
Nationals Principal Owner Mark D. Lerner will be blogging throughout the 2012 Grapefruit League Season from Viera, bringing his own unique perspective of the goings-on at Nats Spring Training.
Bags in hand, my wife Judy and I arrived yesterday evening in Florida.
This morning, I pulled into Space Coast Stadium very early. I was struck by the obviously warmer-than-DC temps, but honestly it was the optimism in the air that set this arrival apart from all my other spring visits.
Mike Rizzo and Davey Johnson’s work began here almost two weeks ago. They officially put the pitchers and catchers through their paces for the first time on Feb. 21st. But, from all the reports I received from the ground, the vast majority of players reported to camp early and in great shape. It is obvious that their 2012 preparations had begun months earlier.
Today at Noon, we host Georgetown University at Space Coast Stadium for the second time. What a great opportunity for the young Hoyas. I bet the memories of today’s contest last a lifetime. When this opportunity was raised to host the Hoyas, we accepted immediately. It was the perfect chance to give back and help grow, in our own small way, the game of baseball at the college level in the DC area.
As a baseball nut, I have always noticed some of the MLB-NCAA matchups at the beginning of the spring. Through the years, the Red Sox have often hosted Boston College and the same with the Marlins and the Miami Hurricanes.
I’m also excited that I’ll get to see Matt Purke pitch for the first time. For those of you who do not know, Matt was our fourth overall selection in last year’s Draft. A left-handed pitcher, Purke was a first-round pick the season prior by Texas, but chose to return to TCU for his sophomore season. I am anxious to see him in action, because he is quite talented, from what I understand.
Then on Saturday, the official Grapefruit League season begins with a road game against the Astros. In a true twist of fate, we will face Livan Hernandez, who signed with Houston in late January. I wanted to make sure that I crossed paths with Livan this spring. Not only is he an obvious favorite of mine to watch perform (it’s that changeup!), but I want to find him and thank him for his two terms of service with the Nationals. I don’t think any true Nationals fan will ever forget him. Livan threw our first pitch. He won more games than anyone in team history. And he did it with flair, charisma and most importantly, a smile on his face. I will truly miss him as a member of the Nats.
Until we next blog …
John Dever is the Senior Director of Media Relations for the Washington Nationals. As a team employee in close contact with the players, coaches and front office throughout Spring Training, he will bring an inside look at the happenings in Viera in Dever’s (Almost) Daily Diary throughout February and March.
Another beautiful day today, highs in the low 80s. Potentially 88 on Saturday for the Grapefruit League opener at Houston.
Busy day, so let’s get started …
*Davey Johnson has been asked many times in the last months months to list some similarities between Ryan Zimmerman and his former teammate, Hall-of-Famer Brooks Robinson. Davey’s answer ALWAYS starts with “they both have soft hands.”
*Enjoyed having Danny Knobler from CBSsports.com visit us this week. He wrote a piece yesterday about Bryce Harper and the Nationals eye toward winning. You can read the piece here.
To me the best part of the article is when Knobler, who covered the Tigers for years, asks Bryce about Al Kaline. Bryce then proceeds to ace his history test, letting Knobler in on a “secret” that I’d bet no current player in any camp outside of perhaps Lakeland knew. Kaline won a batting title at the age of 20! Bryce’s reverence for the game of baseball and its history is remarkable and rare, especially among modern players, many of which remember watching Cal Ripken as a kid playing third base for the Orioles.
*I had dinner with Davey, Mike Rizzo, Harolyn Cardozo and Mike Gazda on Sunday night at Amici’s, which is located only about 2-3 miles from Space Coast Stadium. Great authentic Italian food, excellent hospitality and the company was even better. Around the middle of the meal, Mike Rizzo really got Davey going, so we all were privy to various stories about his ’86 Mets, Sadaharu Oh, Ted Williams and even John Havlicek, who is a good fishing buddy of his. Davey can spin a tale like few I have ever met, he has just a fantastic cadence that really draws the listener in. I wish I had that skill.
*On Saturday, the Nationals trek to Kissimmee for their Grapefruit League opener and will face the club’s all-time leader in wins (44) … our buddy and yours … Livan Hernandez! While it will be a tad strange to be on the other side of Livo’s arsenal of changeups, slurves and swingback fastballs, we cannot pretend this has not happened before. Between his two stints in DC, Livo pitched against the Nationals while repping the D-Backs, Rockies, Twins and Mets.
We are all excited for Livan and know that he will be an excellent resource, both on the rubber and in the clubhouse, for a young Astros ballclub.
*Well, MASN and our fans will see Stephen Strasburg and lefthander J.A. Happ square off on Sunday. After a long off-season, it’ll be great to see Bob Carpenter and F.P. Santangelo back in Viera for MASN’s debut telecast of the season.
*Other pitching probables for the Nationals: Mon. at NYM (LHP John Lannan), Tue. at ATL (LHP Gio Gonzalez).
After taking the series with last night’s win over Chicago, the Nationals have the opportunity to sweep the Cubs tonight. Matt Garza, a big offseason acquisition for the Cubs, will trade blows with veteran Livan Hernandez in what could be a pitcher’s duel.
Kosuke Fukudome – RF
Starlin Castro – SS
Aramis Ramirez – 3B
Carlos Pena – 1B
Geovany Soto – C
Marlon Byrd – CF
Alfonso Soriano – LF
Darwin Barney – 2B
Matt Garza – P
Roger Bernadina – LF
Danny Espinosa – 2B
Ryan Zimmerman – 3B
Michael Morse – 1B
Jayson Werth – RF
Rick Ankiel – CF
Wilson Ramos – C
Ian Desmond – SS
Livan Hernandez – P
*Against the Cubs, Livo is 11-7 with a 4.16 ERA and 93 strikeouts in 22 games started.
*In his one career outing against the Nationals, Garza pitched 5.2 innings and allowed three earned runs over seven hits and four walks.
Jimmy Rollins – SS
Placido Polanco – 3B
Chase Utley – 2B
Ryan Howard – 1B
Raul Ibanez – LF
Carlos Ruiz – C
Domonic Brown – RF
John Mayberry – CF
Roy Halladay – P
Rick Ankiel – CF
Danny Espinosa – 2B
Jayson Werth – RF
Laynce Nix – LF
Michael Morse – 1B
Wilson Ramos – C
Jerry Hairston – 3B
Alex Cora – SS
Livan Hernandez – P
*Against the Phillies, Livan Hernandez is 12-11 with a 3.59 ERA and 136 strikeouts in 29 games started. Roy Halladay has, so far in his career, handled the Nats well—today’s matchup could easily turn into a pitcher’s duel.
*Former Phillies outfielder Jayson Werth knows how to handle his old team: he’s batted .279 with a .407 on-base percentage and .628 slugging percentage against them. He’s also hit four home runs off of Philly.