"As his father watched from the stands, Storen prevailed. While Storen succeeded in his debut, the Nationals' continued offensive stagnancy rendered him an unnecessary luxury in a 6-2 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals. At some point, Storen will be protecting leads. For now, the Nationals, losers of four straight as they limp toward the end of a nine-game, nine-day road trip, lack the firepower to build one."
"Pujols, batting cleanup for the first time in nearly seven years, reached base in all four of his plate appearances, leaving Nationals manager Jim Riggleman to call him "Babe Ruth" after the game. Pujols and Colby Rasmus each scored twice, and rookie David Freese drove in two runs with his first big-league triple."
"Storen's promotion is certainly out of need--the Nats have had trouble in the sixth and seventh innings--but also something of a reward for signing quickly, working his way through the minor leagues last summer, and being prepared for the challenge this season by mowing down batters in two different levels of minor leagues."
"The move to promote Storen now may actually end up costing the Nationals more money down the road. Because they didn’t wait another couple weeks as they plan to do with Strasburg, Storen could qualify for “Super 2” status and thus be eligible for arbitration after the 2012 season and command a higher salary. The club, though, is willing to make that financial commitment later if this young reliever helps lock up some victories now."
"Through their first 35 games, the Nationals had staked themselves to a second-place ledge in the NL East, despite not doing anything at a particularly elite level, by staying away from the kinds of losing streaks that had pockmarked their schedule the last two seasons. They hadn't lost more than three straight games all season, playing slump-proof baseball with a clubhouse of veterans and a manager who's tough to impress."
"Giving Away Outs, LOB's: 4-2 Cardinals. Adam Kennedy and Ian Desmond single to start the Nats' seventh, and Roger Bernadina's called upon to bunt both runners over, which he does. One down on the sac bunt. Pinch hitter Mike Morse pops out to the infield. Adam Dunn gets a pinch hit appearance against right-hander Jason Motte...and he K's, swinging, chasing a 96mph fastball up high and outside. Two stranded. Willie Harris goes 1 for 3 on the night. Cristian Guzman, Ryan Zimmerman, Josh Willingham and Pudge Rodriguez are a combined 0 for 15 with 3 K's and 4 LOB."