May 18: Pirates (16-21) @ Nationals (11-25); Bucs claim RHP Jackson, Barthmaier released

Greetings from DC. I’m back on the beat, and now you’re stuck with me for 17 games in a row.

First things first, just received word from the Pirates that the club has claimed RHP Steven Jackson off waivers from the Yankees. In order to put Jackson on the 40-man roster, the Pirates gave RHP Jimmy Barthmaier, who just underwent season-ending Tommy John surgery, his unconditional release.

Jackson, who has been assigned to Triple-A Indianapolis, had a 1.88 ERA and one save in 14 1/3 innings for Triple-A Scranton Wilkes-Barre before the Yankees designated him for assignment on May 8 to clear a roster spot. Jackson was a 10th-round pick by the D-backs in 2004. The 27-year-old has never pitched above Triple-A.

As for Barthmaier, he only made one brief (two hitters) appearance this year before being shut down with an elbow injury. The Pirates claimed the right-hander off waivers before the 2008 season. Barthmaier made three appearances for the Pirates in ’08, going 0-2 with a 10.45 ERA. He fared much better as a starter in Indy (3-1 with a 3.53 ERA in 16 starts last season).

The Pirates could have placed him on the 60-day disabled list but instead decided to grant him his release.


As for the happenings in DC…

  • Nyjer Morgan, who missed both games this weekend, was in the starting lineup until he came off the field at about 4 pm and said he still felt a little discomfort in his left hamstring. Morgan did a lot of on-field sprinting this afternoon to test it and felt the slight strain only when making turns. Delwyn Young was inserted into the lineup in place of Morgan, who is expected to return to the field on Tuesday.
  • Tom Gorzelanny is still with the team, though a timetable for his duration here is still undetermined. It all depends on how the bullpen is able to recover these next few days. If the starters can pitch deep and give the bullpen time to get back in one piece, Gorzelanny will likely be gone by the end of the week.
  • Craig Hansen is down in Bradenton, Fla., to begin his rehab work, which will start with three side sessions. Hansen will throw the first session on Tuesday.
  • Manager John Russell will try to stay away from using both Evan Meek and Sean Burnett in tonight’s game. Meek threw two innings on Sunday, while Burnett was called on for three innings in Saturday’s rain-interrupted affair.


Some interesting tidbits concerning Monday’s pitching matchup of Ross Ohlendorf and Ross Detwiler (who is making his Major League debut)…. Both were drafted by Mike Rizzo, who is currently the Nationals’ active GM….And this will be the first time in baseball history that two pitchers with the first name “Ross” start against each other.


As an aside, this is my first visit to Nationals Park (I skipped the trip last year), and I have to say, it’s a nice park they have here. The press box is quite high — almost at the top of the stadium — but there is a nice view of the top of the Capitol from the view up here.


Thumbnail image for Nationals Park.jpgAlso, for anyone who may be out here for the series, or who is planning a trip to DC in the future, I highly recommend a stop at the Newseum — located off Pennsylvania Avenue, right near the Capitol. I spent my morning at the Newseum, a museum dedicated to journalism and the news, and thoroughly enjoyed my visit. Plenty to do, plenty to see even if you don’t have the same journalism background as I do. Oh, and for those of you who need a sports fix, yes, they have a 25-minute film dedicated to the history of sports reporting.


Pirates lineup:

  1. Delwyn Young (RF)
  2. Freddy Sanchez (2B)
  3. Nate McLouth (CF)
  4. Craig Monroe (LF)
  5. Adam LaRoche (1B)
  6. Robinzon Diaz (C)
  7. Andy LaRoche (3B)
  8. Jack Wilson (SS)
  9. Ross Ohlendorf (RHP)

Nationals lineup:

  1. Cristian Guzman (SS)
  2. Nick Johnson (1B)
  3. Ryan Zimmerman (3B)
  4. Adam Dunn (RF)
  5. Josh Willingham (LF)
  6. Willie Harris (CF)
  7. Anderson Hernandez (2B)
  8. Josh Bard (C)
  9. Ross Detwiler (LHP)  


Jen– Got any idea when Brandon Moss will be back in the lineup?

Hey Jen– got any idea when Brandon Moss will be back in the lineup?

Moss should be back in the lineup on Tuesday, since the Nats are starting a righty tomorrow. Moss not starting on Monday was due to there being a lefty starter on the other hand. Hence, the nod to the right-handed hitting Monroe.

Jen, welcome back! I missed your blog. Thanks for the Newseum tip. What’s the story with Capps – location, velocity, confidence?

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