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Davey won't tell La Russa how to pitch his guys

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Davey won't tell La Russa how to pitch his guys

The Nationals are sending their two best pitchers to Tuesdays MLB All-Star Game in Kansas City, Gio Gonzalez who has participated in the game before and Stephen Strasburg who will make his first appearance. Both pitchers are important to the team this year and beyond, but things are more complicated with Strasburg given his injury history and expected innings limit for this season. Davey Johnson said on Saturday, however, he has no plans to talk to National League manager Tony La Russa to tell him how to use his guys.

The prudent thing is, the way I look at it is, give the guys with the most rest the most work, he said. Tony is a Hall of Fame manager, Im sure he will be doing that.

Johnson was unaware of the rules of the game as far as pitching, whether starting on a certain day excludes a pitcher from being used. He was also unsure of the amount of pitchers on the N.L. roster, a clear sign he wasnt too worried about his players being called on in the game.

The N.L. team in fact holds 13 total pitchers, eight of them starters and five of them relievers. Pitchers generally pitch one inning at a time, so it is possible that one or both of Washingtons All-Star arms will not play. With Strasburg starting Friday he will have three days of rest and after Gonzalez starts Saturday he will have two.

Johnson himself managed the N.L. roster at the 1987 All-Star game and La Russa was on the American League staff as a member of the Oakland Athletics. Back then, however, the team carried only eight pitchers and the 1987 game went 13 innings. Because of the games length Johnson had to use Chicago Cubs closer Lee Smith three innings, a move that likely wouldnt fly in todays game.

However La Russa decides to use Strasburg and Gonzalez, Johnson will be watching the game from afar. He plans to go down south for the break.

Im going to Florida, Im going where its hotter, he said. Ive got a couple of golf games set up.

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Soto, Harper homer in Nats' win over Padres

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USA TODAY Sports Images

Soto, Harper homer in Nats' win over Padres

WASHINGTON -- Juan Soto, the youngest player in the majors at 19, hit a three-run homer in his first career start as the Washington Nationals defeated the San Diego Padres 10-2 on Monday.

Mark Reynolds had two solo home runs for the Nationals, who snapped a three-game losing streak. Bryce Harper had a homer and an RBI double.

Soto's drive highlighted a five-run second inning for Washington. The promising outfielder, who played for three minor league teams this season, hit the first pitch from Robbie Erlin (1-3) over the Nationals bullpen in left-center field. Soto also singled.

Soto's homer traveled an estimated 442 feet at Nationals Park. He earned a standing ovation from the crowd and the teenager responded by taking a curtain call. Per Baseball-Reference.com, Soto became the first teenager to hit a home run in a major league game since Harper on Sept. 30, 2012.

Called up to Washington on Sunday, Soto became the first 19-year-old to make his major league debut since Dodgers pitcher Julio Urias in 2016. He entered that game in the eighth inning as a pinch-hitter and struck out.

Washington's starting left fielder began the season at Class A Hagerstown. He hit a combined .362 with 14 homers and 52 RBIs in his three minor league stops.

Gio Gonzalez (5-2) allowed two runs and two hits in seven innings.

San Diego's Franmil Reyes, playing in his seventh career game, also hit his first career home run.

Trea Turner hit a pair of RBI doubles for Washington. Reynolds had three hits.

Erlin surrendered six runs and seven hits over four innings in his third start of the season. San Diego had won three in a row.

Reyes connected for a two-run homer in the fourth inning, but the Padres' lineup generated little else against Gonzalez, who allowed one run over six innings in a no-decision at San Diego on May 9.

2018 MLB POWER RANKINGS AND OTHER NATS NEWS:

- Rankings Update: Where does your team fall?
- Cause For Concern?: How worried should Nats fans be?
- Very Persuasive: How Rizzo convinced Reynolds to come to D.C.

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Juan Soto crushes a homer in the first at-bat of his first-ever start

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@MLB

Juan Soto crushes a homer in the first at-bat of his first-ever start

Juan Soto, the highly-regarded 19-year-old Nationals' prospect, got his first major league start of his career tonight. 

How did it go, you ask? Surely it would take Soto - who was in Single-A less than two weeks ago - some time to adjust? 

What were you doing at 19??

2018 MLB POWER RANKINGS AND OTHER NATS NEWS:

- Rankings Update: Where does your team fall?
- Cause For Concern?: How worried should Nats fans be?
- Very Persuasive: How Rizzo convinced Reynolds to come to D.C.