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NLDS 2017: Nationals vs. Cubs Game 5 Live Blog

NLDS 2017: Nationals vs. Cubs Game 5 Live Blog

It's time for yet another terrifying tradition on the D.C. sports calendar: an elimination game at home! 

All eyes are on Nats Park tonight as the Nationals, who are playing in Game 5 thanks to Stephen Strasburg and Michael A. Taylor, look to win their first playoff series since moving to D.C. 

Don't forget to follow along on Twitter as we bring you live updates from the stadium. 

NATIONALS-CUBS LIVE UPDATES:

12:45 AM - Cubs 9, Nats 8: It's over. Davis strikes out Harper to get the final out, the Nationals drop Game 5 to the Cubs and their season is done. 

12:35 AM - YOU DON'T MAKE CHUCK TODD ANGRY:

12:30: Top 9: Cubs 9, Nats 8: This has been one of the most absurd baseball games in Nats history. Do they have one more inning of magic left?

12:26 AM - Jose Lobaton gets picked off first, and after an excrutiatingly long reply to prove it, the Nats' inning is over. 

12:20 AM - 

12:17 AM - Cubs 9, Nats 8: Michael A. Taylor answers yet again. RBI single and it's a one-run game. 

12:01 AM - We'll just leave this here:

12:00 AM - Important WMATA information, because it wouldn't be a DC playoff game without it:

11:47 PM - Cubs 9, Nats 7: Harper with an RBI flyout and it's a two-run game again. 

11:30 PM - Bottom 7: Cubs 9, Nats 6: Cubs add an extra run after Kris Bryant beats out a double play, scoring Jon Jay. 

11:11 PM - Top 7: Cubs 8, Nats 6: It ain't over yet! Murphy adds an RBI double and the Nats have life. 

11:05 PM - Cubs 8, Nats 5: Werth scores on a passed ball, and the Nats aren't dead yet. 

10:49 PM - Great!:

10:47 PM - Bottom 6th: Cubs 8, Nats 4: Jayson Werth misplays the final out in left field and the Cubs add another run. 

Don't click this. 

10:34 PM: Top 6 - Cubs 7, Nats 4: Scherzer won't come back out. Brandon Kintzler gets the 6th inning. 

10:24 PM - uhhhhhhhh:

10:22 PM - 

10:05 PM - Bottom 5: Cubs 7, Nats 4: The Cubs rough up Scherzer for four runs and take the lead. It's happening ... 

10:00 PM - 

BAH GAWD THAT'S MAX SCHERZER'S MUSIC. 

The Cy Young winner comes in in relief. Elimination baseball is the best baseball. 

9:30 PM - Top 4th: Nats 4, Cubs 3: That'll be it for Gio. Matt Albers takes over on the mound. Gonzalez's final line is 3 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 4 BB and 5 Ks. 

9:25 PM - THIS BUNT:

9:20 PM - Bottom 3rd: Nats 4, Cubs 3: Control issues come back to bite Gonzalez. Cubs get two across - one on a wild pitch - to make it a one-run game. 

Meanwhile, at the stadium:

9:10 PM - Here are your Statcast numbers for both those homers:

9:07 PM - TOP 3rd: Nats 4, Cubs 1: Well, that was fun. Now we just have to get through 6 innings of 2015 NLDS references! 

8:55 PM - MICHAEL. A. TAYLOR. It's a 3-run homer and now the Nats are up 4-1:

8:48 PM - DANIEL MURPHY DINGER. It's 1-1. 

8:38 PM - Javy Baez, man:

8:30 PM - Bottom 1st: Cubs 1, Nats 0: Nats get a leadoff single from Turner but can't do anything with it. 

8:15 PM - Top 1st - Cubs 1, Nats 0: Cubs plate one run in the top of the first. Gonzalez escapes a bases-loaded jam. Control's not looking strong to start. 

7:58 PM - Before we get started, take a look back at how everyone at NBC Sports Washington saw this series playing out. Shoutout to Rich Tandler for coming in *hot* that a Nats in 3 prediction. 

7:55 PM - 

7:45 PM - I wonder what very insightful opinion Marlins Man will have about the Nationals' crowd tonight:

7:30 PM - Just want everyone to remember that Cubs pitcher Carl Edwards Jr. had this to say about Game 5 last night:

Which happened right after this:

7:00 PM - It'll be interesting to see how much Gonzalez mixes his pitches tonight. It's cleary been something he's worked more on as the season's progressed:

The Cubs are a free-swinging group, but Gonzalez has continually had command issues, posting a BB% that was above the league average in eight of his nine seasons. On a night that's expected to remain cold and wet, having a feel for all his pitches might make all the difference. 

6:40 PM - Baseball weather! 

6:30 PM - The lineups for both teams are officially out, and the Nats are going with the same group that kept them alive last night: 

 

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Max Scherzer Giving Away Memorabilia For Good Cause

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USA Today Sports Images

Max Scherzer Giving Away Memorabilia For Good Cause

By Ryan Wormeli

Max Scherzer is the ace of the Nationals staff, a fan favorite, and the 2017 National League Cy Young award winner. He's also a soon-to-be father whose wife, Erica May-Scherzer, once accidentally threw out the jersey he wore when throwing his 2nd career no-hitter. This time around, I'm guessing they talked it over first before deciding to sell some of his memorabilia garage-style for a new fundraiser.

We don't have any more information about the fundraiser yet, but May-Scherzer posted some photos on Twitter this afternoon. 

And in case you're wondering, no, the Scherzer family cat featured in one of the pictures isn't for sale (we assume). Plus, even if they were willing to part with their cat, considering Scherzer is on a contract worth over $200 Million, their price would probably be pretty steep. How much would you pay to adopt the cat of a 3-time Cy Young winner?

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Why Bryce Harper would be a bargain at $500 million

Why Bryce Harper would be a bargain at $500 million

$500 million.

That number is so hard to wrap your brain around, but it's a number a lot of professional baseball players may soon start seeing on their contracts.

One player who could be the first to see that amount within the next year is Nationals right fielder Bryce Harper.

Harper will become a free agent in 2018 and people are already projecting his market value at close to $500 million, if not more.

Miami Marlins right fielder Giancarlo Stanton signed a contract back in 2014 for 13 years, $325 million, holding the league record.

For Fancy Stats writer Neil Greenberg, $500 million is a bargain for someone of Harper's caliber.

"Harper is every bit as good [as Stanton] but he's also young," Greenberg told the Sports Junkies Friday.

"I mean, we don't see a player that's as good as Harper, that's as young a Harper, hit the market almost ever I want to say. You look at how many years of his prime he has left and then even if you start to give him just the typical aging curb off of that prime, he's probably worth close to 570 million dollars starting from 2019 and going forward ten years. And that includes also the price of free agency going up and other factors."

Harper, who is only 25 years-old, brings more to a team than just talent. He's one of the most recognizable figures in baseball, bringing tremendous marketing opportunities to an organization. Greenberg dove deeper into how that will increase his market value.

"And that's just for the on-the-field product. You talk about all the marketing that's done around Bryce Harper [and] what he does for the game. In my opinion, and based on the numbers that I saw, he's a bargain at $500 million."

Don't we all wish someone would say $500 million is a bargain for us?

After crunching the numbers, the biggest takeaway for Greenberg is the return on investment the Nationals have gotten out of Harper.

"Like if you look at his wins above replacement throughout his career, he's given you 200 million dollars in value for 21 million dollars in cash and he's due what another 26 or 27 million this year. I mean he's already given you an amazing return on investment."

"So, if you're the Nationals having - benefited from that - you know you have a little bit of, I guess, wiggle room in terms of maybe you're paying a little bit for past performance 'cause, you know, when a player is on arbitration in their early years they don't really get paid that much."

The Nationals still have Harper for one more season and many feel they need to make him an offer sooner than later. Whenever and whoever he gets an offer from, it's going to be a nice pay day for him.