Fishing on the Potomac: On Top!

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Fishing on the Potomac: On Top!

By Steve Chaconas
Fishing on the Potomac
CSNwashington.com

The river is clearing and tides are right for early morning topwaters. Look for fish to be in water as shallow as 6 inches! Cloud cover will make this bite last longer!

Water temperatures should be into the mid 70s this week. NBC Ch. 4 meteorologist "Weather Kim" Martucci says, A warm start around 90 on Monday before temperatures stabilize around 80 for the week. Unfortunately the weather pattern will not be stable as a chance of thunderstorms exists every day with the best chance on Tuesday before clouds take over for the weekend

With early morning low water, try walking lures like Lucky Craft Gunfish and G-Splash poppers. Wake baits are also a good bet. In areas with grass, hollow or buzz frogs on braid will bring big ones up! If it's cloudy, try topwaters until they become ineffective.

As tides come in, lures that go a bit deeper like Manns Baby 1-Minus in firetiger patterns will keep baits closer to fish as the sun rises higher in the sky. Also try blackblue chatter jigs and swimming jigs like Manns Stone Jig with a HardNose craw trailer on GAMMA fluorocarbon to cover various depths. If there is a chop on the water and some cloud cover, try spinnerbaits.

As the sun comes up high at 11 oclock or so, try hitting heavy cover with soft plastics and jigs. Mizmo Tubes in River Craw patterns rigged Texas style on 16-pound test Gamma Edge Fluorocarbon. Target grass clumps or go to docks. Also try Mizmo Swamp Monsters in the same colors. A good soaking in garlic Jacks Juice helps. Try outside grass edges on lower water or drops with cover. This is also a good time to go to docks where no grass is present.

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Gio Gonzalez has plenty to work on before Nats playoffs begin

Gio Gonzalez has plenty to work on before Nats playoffs begin

Gio Gonzalez' seesaw 2016 regular season is officially in the books. Next stop: the NL Division Series where he will face the L.A. Dodgers, likely in Game 3 and possibly with one of the two teams' season on the line. Either way, it will be important.

Over the years, teams have trotted out far less accomplished pitchers in playoff games, ones with nothing close to the track record of Gonzalez. And for long stretches this season, he has been effective, like in July and August when he held a 3.16 ERA across 11 starts.

But a lot has happened since August for Gonzalez, both on the field and off of it. In his five starts since, he's given up 19 runs in 23 innings. That stretch includes his 3 2/3 innings on Wednesday night against the Diamondbacks, when he gave up three runs on eight hits and three walks and threw a whopping 100 pitches.

Just in time for the playoffs.

The Nationals have an unenviable situation without Stephen Strasburg, who is rehabbing a right flexor strain, and with Joe Ross still building his workload. They better hope the version of Gio Gonzalez they see in the NLDS is better than the one they have witnessed over the last several weeks.

“It wasn’t that good, but we didn’t score any runs either. He had a lot of pitches in a short period of time," manager Dusty Baker said after the Nats' 3-0, rain-shortened loss.

"They ran his pitch count up. They didn’t swing at very many balls and it looked like they were trying to wait on his fastball."

Gonzalez will now have to make adjustments in bullpen sessions over the course of the next 12 days. He will have to do that with a lot on his mind. Gonzalez heads to the funeral of close friend Jose Fernandez on Thursday and was pitching with extra emotion against Arizona. 

“He’s an emotional-type guy," Baker said. "I talked to him a little bit about Fernandez and he was pitching for him and for us. Just wasn’t a very good night."

Now Gonzalez will have plenty of time to grieve and recalibrate before he sees the Dodgers. Whether that hurts or helps has yet to be determined.

“It can [help]. Just depends on, not only can it reset him, but after things have subsided some… they say time heals all wounds, but some wounds take longer to heal," Baker said.

"It probably won’t really set in until after the season when he’s back in Miami and around and Jose’s not around. Hopefully, he can have a couple good ‘pens and get it back together because we’re certainly going to need him come playoff time."

Gonzalez does have some success against the Dodgers to build off of. He holds a 1.69 ERA across 32 innings vs. L.A. since 2012 and held them to one run through six earlier this season.

Gonzalez is also just ready for a fresh start.

"You start the postseason with a zero ERA. It's a new series. New way to look at it," he said.

[RELATED: Podcast: Can Nationals win without Wilson Ramos?]

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If hairline fracture not enough, Cowboys Dez Bryant reportedly fined

If hairline fracture not enough, Cowboys Dez Bryant reportedly fined

Even when things are going well in Dallas it seems like controversy is never too far away. The latest stems from wide receiver Dez Bryant injuring his right knee during last Sunday's victory over the Bears. 

News of the severity of the injury did not emerge until Wednesday, when Cowboys coach Jason Garrett revealed Bryant suffered a hairline fracture where his tibia bone hits the knee. 

Why the wait? Reports from Dallas show that Bryant missed his scheduled MRI on Tuesday and the tests could not be held until Wednesday. Bryant also missed team meetings on Tuesday. 

MORE REDSKINS: PREPARING WITHOUT DOCTSON

Due to missing the meetings and MRI Tuesday, Bryant has been fined an undisclosed amount, per the reports

The injury comes at a tough time for the Cowboys as the offense has moved the ball well with rookie QB Dak Prescott. 

Dallas has won two games in a row after a narrow loss to the Giants to open the year. In three games, Bryant has 150 receiving yards and a touchdown. 

Against Washington in Week 2, Bryant went for more than 100 yards receiving. Late in that game, the Redskins began to shadow Bryant with Josh Norman.