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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

No. 1 prospect Lucas Giolito to start Tuesday | MLB.com

I know what I will be watching tonight.

Right-hander Lucas Giolito, the No. 1 prospect in baseball according to MLB Pipeline, will make his Major League debut in the 7:05 p.m. ET game at Nationals Park against the Mets and right-hander Matt Harvey. He was called up from Double-A Harrisburg, where he was 5-3 with a 3.17 ERA in 14 starts.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 28, 2016 at 06:47 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: lucas giolito, nationals

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Danny Espinosa, Trea Turner, and the Value of Patience | FanGraphs Baseball

I’ve watched Espinosa a number of times over the years. He’s a useful player. I watched Trea Turner up close last night at Pawtucket. After the Super Two cutoff, the Nationals will be putting an inferior shortstop on the field if they stick with Espinosa.

Danny Espinosa is not a star, and maybe Trea Turner will turn into one. But for 2016, the Nationals have correctly identified that Espinosa as their starting shortstop may very well be their best option, and not just their best option until the Super Two deadline passes. With a quality all-around game, there’s nothing wrong with the Nationals committing to Espinosa as their starting shortstop for the rest of the year.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 23, 2016 at 02:55 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: danny espinosa, nationals, trea turner

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Ever spot a French press in the Nationals dugout? Here’s how it got there. - The Washington Post

The secret is out.

That same day, a few minutes after Espinosa chose the French press, Clint Robinson opted for the normal coffee pot.

“Too bitter,” Robinson said. “I couldn’t get it down.”

The French press coffee, it seems, is an acquired taste. Thanks to two of their most productive contributors off the bench, though, these Nationals have acquired it — and with it, though perhaps not related to it, a firm hold on first place in the National League East.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 18, 2016 at 07:17 AM | 78 comment(s)
  Beats: nationals

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Nationals place Jonathan Papelbon on DL | nationals.com

The Nationals placed right-hander Jonathan Papelbon on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday, retroactive to Monday, with a right intercostal strain.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 14, 2016 at 02:56 PM | 33 comment(s)
  Beats: jonathan papelbon, nationals

Monday, June 13, 2016

Bryce Harper will make half a billion—and he’s worth it - Sportsnet.ca

I know how much money is in the game. It’s still tough getting my mind around this.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 13, 2016 at 08:00 AM | 54 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, nationals

Saturday, June 11, 2016

When a slump isn’t really a slump — and why the Cubs might come back to Earth - The Washington Post

Tom Boswell believes the Cubs are lucky.

The Nationals combined have a subpar .282 BABIP after posting normal marks of .300 and .303 the past two seasons. Nats pitchers have a lucky BABIP against of .283. Both those marks would usually trend back toward the high .290s.

In all of baseball, there is only one stunning “outlier” in BABIP for an entire batting attack or pitching staff: Cubs pitchers. Their BABIP is a ridiculously lucky .248. I don’t care how smart their defensive shifts are or how swift their defenders. Nobody is anywhere close to that good at turning batted balls into outs. In this decade, only one team has had a season under .272. The Cubs likely will watch dozens of “reversion” singles, doubles and triples elude them all summer.

The Cubs are MLB’s best team. But not by as much as it seems. Contrary to what their 41-17 record would seem to imply, it may be a good idea to go ahead and play out the rest of the season.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 11, 2016 at 01:11 PM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: cubs, nationals

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

NYP: Bartolo Colon told Nationals: ‘Throw it down the middle, [I’m] not swinging’

I paid good $ to see BartoLOLo swing the bat at Nats Park and instead this happened:

Colon later admitted he has battled lower-back soreness for the last two-plus weeks. Not wanting to risk aggravating the back, he kept the bat on his shoulder and was called out on strikes three times.

“I thought it wasn’t worth it to swing,” Colon said. “I swing at the balls pretty hard and I thought, ‘Not worth making my back worse,’ so I told their catcher from the beginning, ‘Just throw it right down the middle, [I’m] not swinging.’ ”

Also, take note:

WOR radio will rebroadcast Game 6 of the 1986 World Series (with play by play from Bob Murphy and Gary Thorne) on Thursday at 7 p.m. The Mets will celebrate the 30th anniversary of that World Series title — the franchise’s most recent — this weekend.

#TooSoon, Jimmy?

Renegade JE (((Jason))) Posted: May 24, 2016 at 09:24 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: 1986, bartolo colon, mets, nationals

Friday, May 20, 2016

Tommy John, Stephen Strasburg and Matt Harvey: A ligament runs through them

So for a night, with two pitchers who endured this bizarre procedure that is now considered rote, there was a contrast. That had Collins not only evaluating whether Harvey would make his next start — “We’re going to look at that,” he said — but also using Strasburg as an example for Harvey.

“That guy that pitched tonight for them, he had a couple of mediocre years, and now he’s resurged,” Collins said. “. . . [Harvey] went above and beyond last year, and I’m not sure he’s recuperated from it.”

 

Guapo Posted: May 20, 2016 at 07:06 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: injuries, mets, nationals, secondguessing, tommy john

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Batavia Muckdogs Sale Could Bring Minority Owner

The slow-but-sure demise of the Batavia Muckdogs (New York-Penn) franchise might soon open the door to a new chapter of Minor League Baseball history. If all goes according to plan, the Muckdogs will soon become the only majority black-owned team in baseball.

The Muckdogs have reached an agreement to sell the franchise to a group of black businessmen in the Washington area who plan to move the team next season to the D.C. suburb of Waldorf, Md., according to three sources who requested anonymity.

There are some obstacles to the deal, however.

Bote Man makes baseball fun again Posted: May 19, 2016 at 02:16 PM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: minor leagues, nationals

Tuesday, May 17, 2016


Friday, May 13, 2016

WaPo: No One Expected a Strasburg Extension, then Boras made a call

A really interesting in-depth look at how the Strasburg extension came together. RTFA


What’s realistic to expect in the end from .409-hitting Murphy? - Nationals Pastime

The purpose of this exercise? There are two conclusions worth drawing: 1) Murphy deserves a whole lot of credit for what he’s done to date, because not many have been able to do it over the years, and 2) Barring a complete collapse from a guy who has been a very good hitter his entire career, Murphy should end up with a batting average well north of .300 by season’s end.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 13, 2016 at 09:17 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: daniel murphy, nationals

WTOP.com: Racing FDR: Disaster or opportunity?

My suggestion is that the Nats race the Presidents before the game, then instruct the journalists to report that FDR sprinted to a convincing victory. Hey, it worked like a charm in the old days…

The WHHA [White House Historical Association] is currently celebrating each president in chronological succession with their annual White House ornaments. Last year, that meant Calvin Coolidge, who also appeared as the Racing President for the 2015 season. This year, that meant Herbert Hoover, or “Herbie.”

Aside from the actual mascot’s general creepiness, Hoover seemed at odds with the Rushmore Four and his other predecessors. Nevertheless, as unpopular and poor a President as he may have been, his selection follows in line with the WHHA’s process. All of which leads us to 2017.

Those well-versed in Presidential history already know where this is going. After Hoover drove the country into the Great Depression, America elected Franklin Delano Roosevelt the 32nd President of the United States. FDR was actually elected four straight terms (back before term limits) and was incredibly popular, known for his New Deal, and for his fireside chats, delivered to the nation via radio.

He was also in a wheelchair for most of his adult life. ...

There would be “absolutely nothing wrong with featuring a Racing President in a wheelchair,” said Rick Smith, Executive Director of the Bay Area Outreach and Recreation Program, the leading provider and promoter of adaptive sports and accessible recreation for children and adults with physical disabilities in the greater San Francisco Bay Area.

“If anything it can bring awareness to the fact that people with disabilities can be athletic in the same ways that able body individuals are,” he added.

Smith’s point might alleviate concerns over perceived insensitivity. A disabled Racing President winning races and competing on an even playing field with his peers could help facilitate a larger discussion and help normalize the stigma of disability in America. The CDC estimates that one in five Americans — 53 million — have a disability of some kind, while 2.2 million people in the U.S. depend on a wheelchair for basic mobility.

Renegade JE (((Jason))) Posted: May 13, 2016 at 06:29 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: mascots, nationals, presidents

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Special K’s: Max Scherzer’s 20-strikeout night is an ode to efficiency - The Washington Post

This was Scherzer Wednesday night: 96 strikes in 119 pitches . No one, in the history of the game, has thrown so many strikes in so few pitches, according to baseball-reference.com. The previous “record,” if it can be termed such a thing, would be from Roy Oswalt, when he pitched for Houston and needed 125 pitches to throw 98 strikes in a shutout of Milwaukee in 2001.

So this was everything — history on the face of it, for sure, because that “20” under the “K” category in the box score has been matched just four other times in nine innings. But also in difficult-to-capture ways. Yes, his start was marred by solo homers to Jose Iglesias and J.D. Martinez. But forget all those frustrating nights, screaming at the TV, pleading with a pitcher to throw strike one. Scherzer faced 33 hitters Wednesday. He started 24 of them with a strike.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 12, 2016 at 10:14 AM | 49 comment(s)
  Beats: max scherzer, nationals

Monday, May 09, 2016

USA TODAY: Bryce Harper saw 27 pitches against the Cubs and didn’t swing at a single one

The Nationals outfielder had seven plate appearances in Washington’s 13-inning loss. He was walked six times and also hit by the pitch once. The six walks ties an MLB record for most walks in a game. [...]

Jayson Stark ✔ ‎@jaysonst
That’s 6 BB & one HBP for Bryce Harper today. @ESPNStatsInfo reports no player in the last 100 years has reached base 7 times without an AB!
6:47 PM - 8 May 2016

From 1913 to 2016, (requiring ROE=0, TOB>=6 and AB=0), sorted by greatest TOB

                                                               
Rk     Player     Date Tm Opp   Rslt PA AB R RBI BB TOB IBB SO HBP SH SF ROE BOP PosSummary
1   Jimmie Foxx 1938-06-16 BOS SLB W 12-8 6 0 2   0 6   6   0 0   0   0   0   4       1B

(Note: B-R has no PBP data, only boxes, prior to 1930.)

bobm Posted: May 09, 2016 at 02:19 AM | 60 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, cubs, nationals, records

Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Bryce Harper signs biggest endorsement deal for MLB player

WE MUST PROTECT THIS HOUSE

Washington Nationals star Bryce Harper has signed a 10-year extension with Under Armour that is believed to be the largest endorsement deal in history for a baseball player, a source with knowledge of the deal told ESPN.

Under Armour announced earlier Tuesday that Harper signed a multiyear extension but said terms, including the length of the deal and compensation, would not be disclosed.

The brand, which has had Harper as an endorser for five years, will begin selling Harper’s first signature cleat, the Under Armour Harper One, in July. The company previously sold shirts with a phrase Harper filed to trademark—“That’s A Clown Question, Bro.” Harper abandoned his pursuit of that trademark in 2014.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: May 03, 2016 at 12:20 PM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, endorsements, nationals, under armour

Monday, April 25, 2016

WaPo - Twins and Nats Combine for 16-innings of Wackiness

Sunday’s game had everything a game could offer, from dramatic highs to head-shaking oddities. Bench coach Chris Speier, first base coach Davey Lopes and Baker, in his 21st season as a manager, have seen thousands of games combined, and the three agreed this was the wildest game they had been a part of.

It was definitely not the cleanest game ever played, but there were so many uncommon events that this one will be remembered for quite some time.

Bote Man makes baseball fun again Posted: April 25, 2016 at 08:13 AM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, dusty baker, nationals, twins

Friday, April 22, 2016

Bryce Harper rising to No. 1? Execs still prefer Mike Trout | New York Post

So I asked 13 executives and scouts: If money were no object and you could start a franchise with either Trout or Harper, who do you got?

Three said they actually would take Houston shortstop Carlos Correa, and one also mentioned Baltimore third baseman Manny Machado. But the request was Trout vs. Harper, and eight took Trout and five went with Harper — with two of the Harper voters admitting they only had changed recently. One Trout voter actually wavered toward Harper in the midst of an email response before stating, “I’ll stay with Trout, but it’s as close a vote as you can get.”

Jim Furtado Posted: April 22, 2016 at 09:06 AM | 65 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, bryce harper, mike trout, nationals

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Bryce Harper has knocked it out of the park. Now Lerners must step to the plate. - The Washington Post

Step up to the plate or back up the truck?

Jim Furtado Posted: April 20, 2016 at 08:24 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, nationals

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Bryce Harper Bat Now With 100 Emoji

Bryce Harper >>>>> Billy Ripken


Tuesday, April 05, 2016

Bryce Harper wants to Make Baseball Fun Again

CSN video of interview in question.

But noted Minor League hurler Brent Honeywell aint havin’ it!!11!!

Brent Honeywell @brent_honeywell:
“Make baseball fun again” it must not be too fun being one of the youngest super stars. It must not be fun to face the best of the best. Baseball is not a “tired” game either. It’s been played 155 years and people still want to play it. Real “clown move”. It sucks to see it because guys in MiLB are workin to death to be in his shoes and he’s basically complaining. Grow up.

Honeywell specifically denied in later tweets that he would be throwing at Harper, so Bryce can rest easy.

Bote Man makes baseball fun again Posted: April 05, 2016 at 03:20 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: bryce harper, fun, nationals, party poopers

Friday, April 01, 2016

Dale Murphy on Brycer Harper & Bautista

Dale Murphy was talking with his wife Nancy about this supposed rift between generations. You probably have heard something about it. Bryce Harper wants the game to be more fun, livelier, with more feeling expressed, with bat flips and fist pumps and raw emotion. A few other younger players have said similar things either with words or, in the case of Jose Bautista, with an epic bat flip for the ages.
And in the last couple of weeks, a couple of great players from my childhood — Goose Gossage and Mike Schmidt — took issue with Harper’s words and Bautista’s tactics and the young players’ desire to be more demonstrative. Schmidt wrote that such displays “show a lack of respect for your opponent and the history of the game.”

Gossage concurred. “It was a bleepin’ disgrace,” he said.

Dale Murphy played when I was a kid too; he was a hero of mine. I have three Dale Murphy autographs in this house basically because, if you were a Dale Murphy fan, you just ended up with autographs the way that jeans end up with loose change. He was that kind of nice guy. Murphy was a fantastic player in the time of Schmidt and Gossage. He won back-to-back MVP awards just after Schmidt did. He faced Gossage 23 times, hitting just .130 against the Goose (Murphy did manage a homer against Gossage the very last time they faced each other).

In any case, Dale was talking with Nancy about this goofy rift between old school and new, this disagreement between these crazy kids today with their antics and the staid, respectful players of old who kept their heads down, when Nancy interrupted. ‘Wait a minute? Wasn’t there a player in your time who used to come on to the field doing backflips?”

That was Ozzie Smith, of course. And everybody loved it.

“Funny thing about us old guys,” Murphy says. “We don’t always remember our own time so well.”


Sunday, March 27, 2016

Coordinators make sure players learn the ‘Nationals way’ - The Washington Post

I can’t wait for the book.

“But that’s all of us,” Garber said. “Really what Tommy and I do, we organize the thoughts of Doug [Harris] and [Director of Player Development] Mark [Scialabba] and all the coordinators. Because what we’re trying to do is have a developmental system that produces Washington Nationals major leaguers. . . . Things we’re consistent with from rookie ball to the time they get to the big leagues. A style of play, how we’re going to compete, how we’re going to go about our business, what we think, how we think.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 27, 2016 at 06:35 AM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: nationals

Saturday, March 19, 2016


Thursday, March 17, 2016

Nationals Bronson Arroyo scratched from start | MLB.com

It’s sounds like it’s over.

Bronson Arroyo’s Major League comeback with the Nationals may have come to an end. The 39-year-old right-hander was scratched from his scheduled start on Wednesday with right shoulder soreness, which a source told MLB.com is the result of a tear of his labrum. MLB Network’s Peter Gammons tweeted that the tear was “80 percent.”

Jim Furtado Posted: March 17, 2016 at 08:08 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: bronson arroyo, nationals

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