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2016 New Year's resolutions for the Washington Nationals


2016 New Year's resolutions for the Washington Nationals

Happy New Year, everybody. Here is a look at how each Nationals player can improve in 2016. Some are more serious than others…

BRYCE HARPER: What do you tell a guy who just had one of the best seasons ever? Just, uh like, keep doing that stuff.

STEPHEN STRASBURG: As Stephen said himself at Nationals WinterFest, he needs to be more careful in the weight room. His sprained ankle in spring training began a chain of injuries that affected him for most of 2015.

RYAN ZIMMERMAN: 2015 was another year defined by not one injury, but several. Maybe it's time to sacrifice a rubber chicken to reverse Zim's luck.

JAYSON WERTH: This has been thrown out there before, but Werth might be smart to learn how to play first base. It could prolong his career, as he still provides good value at the plate.

ANTHONY RENDON: Health, as always, is the key. The Nats' lineup is much better with Anthony Rendon playing well, just look at 2014.

WILSON RAMOS: Ramos mentioned throughout 2015 he was trying to get back to his 2011 swing, the year he had his best season. Perhaps a full offseason with that in mind will help. 

DANNY ESPINOSA: Espinosa hit right-handed only through 2015 spring training and then went back to switch-hitting in April. It was super unorthodox, but it worked. Maybe try that again?

MAX SCHERZER: Scherzer is working on cutting down the home runs he allowed in 2015. The longball is a big reason why he had such a rough time in August.

AARON BARRETT: Barrett has had a rough few months with two surgeries, including Tommy John on his right elbow. He has remained positive throughout the rehab process and that mindset will be key for a long recovery.

TANNER ROARK: This is out of his control, but a more permanent role for Roark would be best for his career. He bounced around too much in 2015. Good thing for him, though, is that it sounds like Mike Maddux really likes him.

TREA TURNER: Turner's speed is no joke and it fits in well with Dusty Baker's plan. All he needs to do is get on base and he will be a very good MLB player.

MICHAEL TAYLOR: Like many young players, Taylor needs to cut down on strikeouts. If he can get his OBP up, he will be a star. He knows this, too.

JONATHAN PAPELBON: When you have problems with a teammates, do as the old adage says: use your words.

CLINT ROBINSON: Robinson still fills an important role for the Nats, but they continue to deepen their bench. Maybe reminding Baker he had his hitting book when he was a kid will help Clint get on his good side.

MIKE RIZZO: Learning from mistakes he has made with the bullpen and with clubhouse chemistry would help him go from being a good GM to a great one.

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Former Nats manager Jim Riggleman named interim manager of Reds

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Former Nats manager Jim Riggleman named interim manager of Reds

Remember Jim Riggleman, the infamous Nats manager that resigned from the position back in 2011 after a win against the Seattle Mariners? Well he's back in a managerial position.

Bryan Price was fired as manager of the Cinncinati Reds Thursday, after the team started the 2018 season 3-15. Riggleman, who spent four seasons as their bench coach, was named the interim manager to replace Price.

Riggleman was promoted to interim manager of the Nats in July of 2009, after Manny Acta was let go midseason. He stayed on as manager for 2010 and 2011, and he then resigned from the team on June 23, 2011 after a win agaisnt the Seattle Mariners. He had lead the team to a win in 11 of their last 12 games prior to stepping away.

The reason behind the dramatic exit was due to the organization not yet picking up his 2012 contract option. He had reportedly requested a conversation with the front office about his future with the organization, and was upset after they declined. At 58 years-old, he felt he deserved more respect.

He's been with the Reds organization since 2012, and has spent time managing the Padres, Cubs and Mariners, in addition to the Nationals. His career winning pct. with each team has been below-.500.

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Nationals fall after Mets score 9 runs in 8th inning

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Nationals fall after Mets score 9 runs in 8th inning

NEW YORK -- Yoenis Cespedes launched a grand slam during a nine-run outburst in the eighth inning that rallied the New York Mets past the Washington Nationals 11-5 on Wednesday night, preventing a three-game sweep.

Todd Frazier tied it at 4 with a two-run single and pinch-hitter Juan Lagares put New York ahead for the first time with a two-run double off ineffective setup man Ryan Madson (0-2).

Shut down by Tanner Roark for seven innings, the first-place Mets broke loose in the eighth and improved to 13-4 with a stirring victory against their NL East rivals.

Ryan Zimmerman homered twice, tripled and drove in four runs for the Nationals, who pulled off their own big comeback in the eighth inning of the series opener.

Two nights later, New York returned the favor.

Roark limited the Mets to two hits and left leading 4-2. Michael Conforto, Cespedes and Asdrubal Cabrera singled off Madson to load the bases with nobody out in the eighth. Jay Bruce fouled out before Frazier smacked a two-run single up the middle and advanced to second on the throw home.

After an intentional walk to Adrian Gonzalez loaded the bases again, pinch-hitter Wilmer Flores struck out. Lagares then lined a two-run double the other way, just inside the right-field line at the outer edge of the infield grass, to put the Mets up 6-4.

Sammy Solis walked Amed Rosario and Conforto to force in a run. Cespedes connected for his sixth career slam -- the third by the Mets already this season -- off A.J. Cole, sending fans into a frenzy.

Both of Cespedes' hits in the inning came on 0-2 pitches.

AJ Ramos (1-1) worked a perfect inning for his first win with the Mets since being acquired from Miami last July.

Howie Kendrick reached on an infield single for Washington in the first and Bryce Harper drew his 24th walk, most in the majors. Zimmerman, batting .121 at that point and struggling to make opponents pay for bypassing Harper, came through with a drive to left-center off Steven Matz for his second home run of the season.

Matz steadied himself after a 33-pitch first inning and retired his final 10 batters. He was pulled for a pinch hitter in the fourth after throwing 74 pitches.

Cabrera doubled to open the fourth and scored on Gonzalez's single. Zimmerman had a chance to start an inning-ending double play, but his throwing error from first base allowed another run to score on Jose Lobaton's RBI grounder as the Mets cut it to 3-2.

After Mets pitchers retired 16 in a row, Zimmerman's leadoff triple in the seventh got past a diving Bruce in right field, and Moises Sierra followed with a sacrifice fly to make it 4-2.

Zimmerman also hit a solo homer in the ninth.