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Dec 2, 2012 9:07pm
Medium lingzi 1454 posts

WASHINGTON —For their first seven years, filled with on-field losses and
off-field gaffes, the Washington Nationals merely existed, barely mattered. Troy Polamalu Jersey . Thats why so much that
happened in 2012 felt new and significant to them. All the regular-season wins
—a best-in-baseball 98—and the NL East title, the post-season highs and
lows, the intense attention to the decision to shut down Stephen Strasburg in
September. And when it ended, in as difficult-to-digest a way as possible, the
soft voices in the quiet Nationals clubhouse kept repeating the same word in the
wee hours of Saturday, saying they would “learn” from what happened. Learn from
what for nearly every member of a young roster was a debut trip to the playoffs.
Learn from a 9-7 loss to the defending World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals
in Game 5 of their NL division series—a game Washington led 6-0 early, then
7-5 with two outs in the ninth inning. So close, yet so far. No team in baseball
history had blown a lead of more than four runs en route losing a
winner-take-all post-season game. Manager Davey Johnson: “We proved our worth
and we just need to let this be a lesson and … learn from it, have more
resolve, come back and carry it a lot farther.” Closer Drew Storen, who five
times threw a pitch while one strike from a victory but each was called a ball:
“Its the best job when youre good at it. Its the worst job when you fail. Just
got to learn from it.” General manager Mike Rizzo: “Just knowing the character
and the makeup of the core guys in this clubhouse, I think well use it as a
learning tool, as a learning experience, and have a burning desire for it never
to happen again. I think in the long run itll be something that we look back on
and say, It was an experience, it was a tough experience, but its one that makes
you grow.” It was Rizzo who made perhaps the most talked-about personnel move in
all of baseball this year, leaving Strasburg off the NLDS roster after making
the prized right-hander stop pitching with about 3 1/2 weeks left in the regular
season. This was Strasburgs first full season following reconstructive surgery
on his right elbow, and Washington wanted to protect him for the future. “I
stand by my decision, and well take the criticism as it comes,” Rizzo said, “but
we have to do whats best for the Washington Nationals, and we think we did.” The
feeling around the club is its best days are on the horizon, that winning will
now become a regular occurrence. Those 100-loss seasons and worst-in-the-majors
finishes in 2008 and 2009? Long in the past, the thinking goes. With a core of
All-Stars Strasburg and Gio Gonzalez, plus Jordan Zimmermann, in the rotation,
and Bryce Harper, Jayson Werth, Ryan Zimmerman and Ian Desmond in the everyday
lineup, the Nationals like the way theyve set themselves up. “Somebody once said
to me, When you look back at years of losing, you just smile, because when it
gets to the winning, its awful sweet. I think weve reached that stage,” said
Mark Lerner, son of Nationals principal owner Ted Lerner, “and well be good for
a long, long time to come.” That very well may be. In the interim, though, there
are a string of questions facing the Nationals as they head into the off-season:
—How will Strasburg react to the way his season ended and what kind of numbers
can he produce with no restrictions at all?—Will Adam LaRoche, the first
baseman who led Washington with 33 homers and 100 RBIs, leave as a free agent?
—How much longer will the 69-year-old Johnson, whose contract as the skipper is
done, manage?—How much better can Harper get? He turns 20 on Tuesday; in Game
5, he became the only teen in baseball history with a post-season triple and one
of two with a post-season homer. —What will it take for Storen and the rest of
the group to put the meltdown against the Cardinals behind them? “Come spring
training next year, well be more battle-tested. Our young players will have
grown up and theyll be veterans,” Rizzo said. “And well know how to react to the
playoff atmosphere.” His team arrived in the playoffs a year earlier than anyone
really expected. After never finishing better than third in the NL East, the
Nationals took over first place for good in May and eventually gave the nations
capital its first taste of post-season baseball since 1933. Pretty much everyone
associated with the Nationals expect the wait for the next October journey to
last 12 months, not 79 years. “We were right there. We were one out, one strike,
away a couple of times. Weve come a long ways, and I think thats why it hurts
even more—because of what weve been through,” said Zimmerman, the third
baseman who was the clubs first draft pick after it moved from Montreal to
Washington in 2005. “Were the first team in this organization ever to be to this
level, and its hurts. We put ourselves in a great position and had a chance to
do something special, but we all should be proud of what we did this year.” Antonio Brown Jersey . The 23-year-old from
St-Ferreol-les-Neiges, Que., crossed the finish line just 4.2 seconds back of
winner Dario Cologna of Switzerland. “It was a good race today for me. Jack Lambert Jersey . Lewis gave up three
hits and walked one while striking out 10 in seven innings, Ian Kinsler had a
three-run triple and Adrian Beltre hit a two-run homer in a seven-run sixth
inning, and the Rangers beat the Houston Astros 9-3 on Sunday. http://www.pittsburghsteelersforsale.com/terry-bradshaw-jerseys
. Fielder got to jog around the bases after a go-ahead three-run home run for
the Tigers, an inning before Jackson raced home for his first career
inside-the-park homer in Detroits 6-2 victory over the AL West-leading Texas
Rangers on Friday night. Ziggy Hood Jersey . For the Miami Heat
forward, just being back on the floor is enough these days. After two
injury-filled seasons, Miller insists hes feeling better and stronger these
days, as the reigning NBA champion Heat settle into the opening days of training
camp. James Harrison Youth Jersey .C. —At first
Dale Earnhardt Jr.SAN DIEGO —Will Venable made the most of one of the few
at-bats he had over the weekend, and Everth Cabreras aggressiveness paid off
again for the San Diego Padres. Venable drove in the go-ahead run in the seventh
inning and Cabrera had two hits and twice beat throws to the plate as the Padres
beat the Colorado Rockies 3-2 on Sunday. “Its tough for me because its not
something Ive been accustomed to or learned how to do yet,” Venable said of
substituting late in games. “It was nice to have that opportunity to get a big
knock there.” Venable has mostly face right-handers this season, having only 55
at-bats and a .213 batting average against lefties. “That was big for Will,”
Padres manager Bud Black said. “Will got a big knock, the biggest knock of the
day. Will against (Matt) Reynolds, whos tough on lefties, got it done.”
Dale Thayer (2-2) pitched 1 1-3 innings of scoreless relief to earn the victory
for the Padres, who have won seven of nine and three straight series for the
first time this season. Huston Street retired the side in order in the ninth to
convert his 16th save in as many chances. Cabrera, who stole home a week ago to
tie a game in Los Angeles, singled to lead off the seventh against Adam Ottavino
(2-1) before Colorado manager Jim Tracy brought in the left-handed Reynolds to
face John Baker and Venable, both left-handed hitters. Baker sacrificed Cabrera
to second and Venable, who had only three at-bats in the series and entered in
the top of the inning as part of a double switch, singled to right as Cabrera
beat Tyler Colvins throw home to put San Diego on top 3-2. Cabrera also scored
the tying run in the fourth on a single by Baker and crashed into catcher
Jordan Pacheco, who dropped the ball before the collision. Pacheco made his
first start at catcher this season since Wilin Rosario was unavailable due to an
ankle injury and backup Ramon Hernandez had caught two straight games. “Weve
tallked about Cabby since we acquired him,” Black said. Brett Keisel Jersey. “There is an inherent
aggressiveness to his game, especially on the basepaths. He is fearless. Good
baserunners, good base-stealers, have that in them. Hes not tentative. He doesnt
scare off. Hes not afraid of getting thrown out. He pushes it.” Eric Young
opened the game with a triple against Ross Ohlendorf and scored on
Marco Scutaros single. San Diego answered in the bottom of the inning when
Alexi Amarista scored on Chase Headleys sacrifice fly against
Christian Friedrich. “They shut us down offensively today, thats what it boils
down to,” Tracy said. “We had four hits in the first two innings of the game and
over the course of the next seven. When your (Nos.) 3, 4, 5 and 6 hitters dont
get anything going, its going to make for a tough day offensively.” Friedrich
gave up two runs on three hits in five innings while striking out two and
walking three. “I got a lot of 2-1 outs and 3-1 outs, which usually dont
happen,” Friedrich said. “But our plan was to go inside today and we stuck to
it, but I just couldnt make adjustments to get back over the plate a little
more.” Ohlendorf yielded two runs and five hits over a season-high 6 2-3
innings. He struck out six and walked two. DJ LeMahieu had two hits and an RBI
for the Rockies, who have lost four of five, and have dropped three consecutive
series. NOTES: Tracy said Rosario is day-to-day and will likely avoid the
disabled list. ... Rockies RHP Drew Pomeranz will miss his next start with
soreness in his right arm. No decision has been made on who will start in
Pomeranzs spot on Tuesday, according to Tracy. ... Newly acquired LHP
Jonathan Sanchez will make his first start for the Rockies on Monday in Arizona
against Ian Kennedy (7-8, 4.33). ... Clayton Richard (7-10, 3.86) will face
Ryan Vogelsong (7-4, 2.31) when San Diego opens a three-game series in San
Francisco. ’ ’ ’ 

Dec 4, 2012 7:54pm
User_img_not_found_03_med shanggu 469 posts

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