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Thursday, September 20, 2012

MLB.com: Nationals clinch first trip to postseason

The Nationals are in the playoffs and they were able advance to the postseason on a great effort from left-hander Ross Detwiler, who pitched six solid innings in a 4-1 victory over the Dodgers at Nationals Park on Thursday night.

MLB.com: Playoff bound: Reds earn berth with sweep

Cincinnati became the first team in baseball to clinch a Wild Card playoff berth and lowered its magic number to clinch the National League Central to two after the Cardinals swept the Astros.

 

NTNgod Posted: September 20, 2012 at 10:13 PM | 116 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: nationals, pennant race, reds

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   1. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 20, 2012 at 10:19 PM (#4241704)
Good for them. Congrats Nats fans!
   2. bunyon Posted: September 20, 2012 at 10:23 PM (#4241711)
I was glad to see there wasn't too much celebrating. Clinching the play-in game shouldn't be a big deal, unless it is done after you're eliminated from the division race.
   3. flournoy Posted: September 20, 2012 at 10:34 PM (#4241722)
I wouldn't want to see a team celebrate clinching the Wild Card Game either way.
   4. Chris Needham Posted: September 20, 2012 at 10:38 PM (#4241725)
Which team's going to be the first to hang a banner commemorating a year they lost the play-in game? I've got money on the Padres.
   5. Chris Fluit Posted: September 20, 2012 at 10:40 PM (#4241726)
I think that either the A's or the O's would do it this year.
   6. flournoy Posted: September 20, 2012 at 11:01 PM (#4241738)
Am I correct to assume that the team with the better record hosts the Wild Card Game? And in the event of a tie, the better head-to head record? And in the event that the tie is still unresolved, then either a coin flip or the previous year's record?
   7. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: September 20, 2012 at 11:07 PM (#4241741)
#6 - Sure that would make sense, but it's actually decided by which team's players racked up more WPA in the All-Star Game. We are going to make that f#cker count yet.
   8. beer on a stick Posted: September 20, 2012 at 11:33 PM (#4241748)
The Rockies used to have one on the left field wall that said 1994(?) Wild Card "Champions".
   9. TerpNats Posted: September 20, 2012 at 11:59 PM (#4241750)
'95, Glenn.
   10. Gamingboy Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:01 AM (#4241751)
I certainly hope that whoever loses the play-in game has the banner says something semi-generic like "Playoff Appearance" and not something stupid like "Second Wild Card Champion".
   11. flournoy Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:20 AM (#4241759)
I know that MLB has declared otherwise, but I don't see a Wild Card Game loser as any more of a playoff team than any other Game 163 loser. I see the game as one that determines which team gets to be a playoff team.
   12. Ryan Lind Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:32 AM (#4241761)
Pirates under .500. First time since May 29.
   13. Voros McCracken of Pinkus Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:45 AM (#4241770)
I think the wild card loser should be called the 2012 Bud Selig Award winner.
   14. JoeHova Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:47 AM (#4241773)
I don't see why a team couldn't hang a sign that said "2012 Wild Card." Sure, it's not something the Yankees would probably want to do but not every team has had that kind of success and for the fans of some teams, any postseason appearance is special and worth commemorating in some way.
   15. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:51 AM (#4241777)
Washington D.C. ballclub clinches first postseason berth since 1933 - local D.C. media says "What the hell is 'baseball''"?
   16. shoewizard Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:53 AM (#4241780)
Wait....wasn't Detwiler fading and the Nationals a question mark to make the playoffs at all ? I seem to remember reading that somewhere.
   17. Dr. Vaux Posted: September 21, 2012 at 01:24 AM (#4241785)
I see the game as one that determines which team gets to be a playoff team.


Everyone does, but Bud Selig says they both "made the playoffs," just like they had "hope and faith" they could do because of how he expanded them. And if you don't call it the playoffs, he'll probably come put you in a gulag or something.
   18. SoSH U at work Posted: September 21, 2012 at 01:43 AM (#4241791)
Everyone does.


Not me. I think it's an awful and unnecessary addition to the postseason, but I don't see any logical reason why the teams that are in this game aren't playoff teams. This isn't the equivalent of the traditional one-game playoff, which was played by tied teams in a game that wasn't on the postseason calendar. The teams will have the opportunity to clinch a berth quite a long time before the game is played. The stats will not be included in the regular season, but in the playoff column on BBRef.

The losers of this year's (and subsequent year's) wild card games will undoubtedly enjoy the least satisfactory postseason experience ever, but they'll be playoff teams nonetheless.

   19. AndrewJ Posted: September 21, 2012 at 07:24 AM (#4241823)
Congratulations to the Nats. The last time Washington made the postseason, Babe Ruth was still a Yankee and Hank Aaron was still in utero.
   20. Coot Veal and Cot Deal's cols=“100” rows=“20” Posted: September 21, 2012 at 07:50 AM (#4241830)
Washington D.C. ballclub clinches first postseason berth since 1933 - local D.C. media says "What the hell is 'baseball''"?


wtop.com has the Nats' clinching as its lead story this morning... I'm honestly surprised. It's above the fold at the Post as well.
   21. depletion Posted: September 21, 2012 at 07:57 AM (#4241833)
Congrats to the Nats and their fans. Congrats to Davey Johnson for working wonders at Yet Another Baseball Team!

Did Teddy win the PrezRace? It's time!

Congrats to the Reds and their fans, as well.
   22. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: September 21, 2012 at 08:09 AM (#4241837)
I'm happy for Nats fans and everyone in the organization. Nevertheless, this piece of news makes me nostalgic of a time when I still had a baseball team to root for.
   23. ThisElevatorIsDrivingMeUpTheWall Posted: September 21, 2012 at 08:28 AM (#4241848)
The reaction of Harper sums it up, he didn't realize they did anything until someone handed him a shirt and a cap. So I guess there will be some kind of "wildcard"ish memorabilia.
   24. ThisElevatorIsDrivingMeUpTheWall Posted: September 21, 2012 at 08:30 AM (#4241849)
The other thing that occurred to me is the Nats' owner, Ted Lerner, is probably one of the few guys left around that remembers that 1933 team. Then Boswell wrote about that this morning too.
   25. tfbg9 Posted: September 21, 2012 at 08:36 AM (#4241853)
Congrats. Now win the whole damn thing.
   26. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 21, 2012 at 08:40 AM (#4241856)
I think the idea that a team shouldn't consider reaching the Wild Card game a playoff appearance as silly as the idea that Melky Cabrera should be stripped of the batting title. How you "feel" about it is one thing but the fact is it IS a playoff game.

I think this all stems from the college sports approach of "stripping" teams of wins or titles. Things happen, pretending they didn't happen doesn't change that. UMass was stripped of their 1995 Final Four berth but you know what? They played in the 1995 Final Four (or whatever year it was). It is simply a record of what occurred, not a value judgment. People are welcome to assign as much or as little to a WC Game appearance as they want but it IS a playoff game.
   27. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 21, 2012 at 08:44 AM (#4241860)
And by the way, good for the Nats. They are a fun team to root for.
   28. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: September 21, 2012 at 08:50 AM (#4241863)
Let me be the first to give a big shout-out to Rockville's very own Jim Riggleman. Riggles, I simply can't thank you enough for quitting on us in the middle of last season like you did. Thank thank, thank you, a million times, thank you! Replacing you with Davey Johnson was one of the absolute best things that could ever have possibly happened for this team. We couldn't have done it with you.

I sincerely hope that things are going well for you with the Pensacola Blue Wahoos and that you're finally getting the respect that you deserve.
   29. boteman is not here 'til October Posted: September 21, 2012 at 08:56 AM (#4241866)
I don't consider this so much a "clinching" as an "unclenching", as in sphincter. The real clinching comes once the Nats have outrun the Braves and they clinch the National League East division.

I had a sneaking suspicion they might do this for one of these celebratory events, but they shot off fireworks when the game was won last night. Even Charlie Slowes got to reprise his "BANG! ZOOM! go the fireworks!" call on the radio at the end of the game. Good times.
   30. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: September 21, 2012 at 08:57 AM (#4241867)
So I guess there will be some kind of "wildcard"ish memorabilia.


The Braves postseason shirts from a couple years ago just say "2010 playoffs" on them, and don't include the words "wild card".
   31. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: September 21, 2012 at 08:59 AM (#4241869)
Don't know if this has been linked around here, but Dusty Baker has not been in the dugout the past couple of games while being hospitalized for an irregular heartbeat. He may not manage tonight at home against LA. It doesn't sound serious, but best wishes to Dusty while he rests up for the playoffs.
   32. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 09:11 AM (#4241872)

The losers of this year's (and subsequent year's) wild card games will undoubtedly enjoy the least satisfactory postseason experience ever, but they'll be playoff teams nonetheless.


Hey, a one game sweep's better than a three-game sweep. At least it's over faster.
   33. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: September 21, 2012 at 09:39 AM (#4241891)
Is Joey B the ONLY Nats fan here? Can we have ONE person express some sort of happiness when the Nats accomplish something, instead of responding with \"#### you, DC sports media" and \"#### you, Jim Riggleman"?
   34. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 21, 2012 at 09:42 AM (#4241894)
Is Joey B the ONLY Nats fan here? Can we have ONE person express some sort of happiness when the Nats accomplish something, instead of responding with \"#### you, DC sports media" and \"#### you, Jim Riggleman"?


Esoteric is also a fan and Andy is at least something of a fan though more Yankees than Nats I think.

I've had Joey on ignore since about May. I really want to enjoy the Nats season but every time I read one of his posts I found myself rooting for Strasburg's arm to rip out of its socket and go through Jordan Zimmermann's brain. Ever since I've been much happier.
   35. JJ1986 Posted: September 21, 2012 at 09:47 AM (#4241901)
Chris Needham is a Nats fan and I think BourbonSamurai is.
   36. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: September 21, 2012 at 09:48 AM (#4241902)
congrats to the nationals, the organization and its fans.

good work
   37. Depressoteric Posted: September 21, 2012 at 09:48 AM (#4241905)
As a diehard Nats fan from Day One in 2005 I'm thrilled, of course...but I want the division, not just the WC. I'll hold off on the fireworks for now.

But I just want to point something out. In February of this year -- before Spring Training even began -- a lot of people were saying that the Nationals could "be better this season," maybe make some noise, but I'm pretty sure there wasn't a single baseball analyst or fan who pegged them as a playoff team.

Davey Johnson didn't merely disagree. He outright announced that the front office should fire him if the Nats failed to make the postseason in 2012. That's how confident he was in this team, and in his ability as a talent evaluator. That's some damn near Rollins-esque stuff, right there.

Put this man in the Hall of Fame, for chrissakes.
   38. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: September 21, 2012 at 09:55 AM (#4241919)
But I just want to point something out. In February of this year -- before Spring Training even began -- a lot of people were saying that the Nationals could "be a better team this season," maybe make some noise, but I'm pretty sure there wasn't a single baseball analyst or fan who pegged them as a playoff team.

Believe it or not, Rick Sutcliffe of all people did. Other than Davey and Sutcliffe, I'm not aware of anyone else prominent who went on record with that prediction before the season.
   39. Bourbon Samurai in Asia Posted: September 21, 2012 at 09:56 AM (#4241920)
Chris Needham is a Nats fan and I think BourbonSamurai is.


Yes, please consider my charming and insightful posts when thinking of the Nats. It will ease your pain.


I will be at the game tonight with a big group of my office people. Most of them are foreigners so they will be a little more interested in hot dogs. Wish I could have gone last night but we had a concert. I annoyed my wife by staying in the bar and not going up to the music until the last out was in the books.
   40. Bourbon Samurai in Asia Posted: September 21, 2012 at 09:57 AM (#4241922)
I'm happy for Nats fans and everyone in the organization. Nevertheless, this piece of news makes me nostalgic of a time when I still had a baseball team to root for.


Man, Harper is the best. I'm just so happy about him in every possible way.
   41. Depressoteric Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:02 AM (#4241929)
Believe it or not, Rick Sutcliffe of all people did. Other than Davey and Sutcliffe, I'm not aware of anyone else prominent who went on record with that prediction before the season.
Huh, nice catch there Joey. (You obviously remembered this from all the way back in February, which is even more amusing!) Gotta give credit to Sutcliffe, he was right and for the right reasons to boot.
   42. booond Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:04 AM (#4241933)
Were they celebrating in Montreal?
   43. McCoy Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:05 AM (#4241934)
Got my playoff tickets! See ya at game 3!
   44. McCoy Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:17 AM (#4241950)
And now game 5 as well!
   45. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:19 AM (#4241953)
Welcome to our bandwagon!
   46. Kurt Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:24 AM (#4241957)
But I just want to point something out. In February of this year -- before Spring Training even began -- a lot of people were saying that the Nationals could "be better this season," maybe make some noise, but I'm pretty sure there wasn't a single baseball analyst or fan who pegged them as a playoff team.

I made a similar comment in a recent thread, someone called me out on it and they were right.

Plenty of people here picked the Nationals to make the playoffs.

   47. bunyon Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:31 AM (#4241971)
but I'm pretty sure there wasn't a single baseball analyst or fan who pegged them as a playoff team.


I thought they were widely considered to be a solid wild card threat. I imagine if you'd told people in February that the Phillies would suck they might well have picked Washington to win the East.
   48. Yonder Alonso in misguided trousers (cardinal) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:33 AM (#4241975)
I certainly hope that whoever loses the play-in game has the banner says something semi-generic like "Playoff Appearance" and not something stupid like "Second Wild Card Champion".


"Participant"
   49. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:34 AM (#4241976)
Davey Johnson didn't merely disagree. He outright announced that the front office should fire him if the Nats failed to make the postseason in 2012. That's how confident he was in this team, and in his ability as a talent evaluator. That's some damn near Rollins-esque stuff, right there.


I had missed that. That's good stuff. I love managers who take the pressure on themselves.

17. Squash Posted: March 28, 2012 at 05:20 PM (#4091643)
AL East: Baltimore
AL Central: Minnesota
AL West: Seattle
AL WC: Kansas City
AL WC: Oakland

NL East: New York
NL Central: Houston
NL West: San Diego
NL WC: Pittsburgh
NL WC: Chicago

I predict at least one of these will be correct.


Looks like one, and possibly two of those will be right. Sadly Pittsburgh is going to come up short on making it three.
   50. jmurph Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:36 AM (#4241983)
Plenty of people here picked the Nationals to make the playoffs.


I had them in the Wild Card. It's probably best if we don't review the rest of my picks.
   51. JJ1986 Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:38 AM (#4241987)
I had the Nats in. I most certainly did not have the Rockies in because that would be ridiculous.
   52. McCoy Posted: September 21, 2012 at 10:43 AM (#4241991)
So if Davey thought they were going to the playoffs the Strasburg plan looks even more foolish.
   53. Depressoteric Posted: September 21, 2012 at 11:01 AM (#4242008)
I'm genuinely surprised at the number of people here on Primer who predicted a playoff spot for the Nats. I do stand corrected. But I'll also point out that (almost) everyone was pegging them as a Second WC with presumably 85-87 wins, not the NL East champs in the ballpark of 98-100 wins. (Of course that's a bit premature, as they haven't clinched the division yet...)

Not that I'm knocking anyone. I didn't peg the Nats as NL East champs either. And I know this team as well as anyone on the site.

EDIT: Which actually makes me think...what are the things we all got wrong, in retrospect, about the Nats? (I suppose one key thing we almost all got wrong wasn't about the Nats at all but rather about the Phils.) Where has the overperformance been? Two obvious answers: Adam LaRoche and Ian Desmond. Another candidate: the ridiculously good bench (Tracy, Bernadina, Lombardozzi, Moore, all of whom have been out of their minds both as pinch-hitters and as backup players).

I think one thing that surprised a number of people on BBTF was the excellence of Gio Gonzalez. I recall a lot of criticism of that deal around here, not just in terms of the amount of prospects Washington gave away, but also in terms of Gonzalez's expected performance in a ballpark that was supposedly less pitcher-friendly. To be fair the major surprise was of Gio's own doing: the sudden drop in his walk rate.
   54. Dingbat_Charlie Posted: September 21, 2012 at 11:02 AM (#4242009)
Congrats Nats and fans! I live in the area and have stayed loyal to the O's, but I'm happy for you.
   55. JJ1986 Posted: September 21, 2012 at 11:07 AM (#4242017)
EDIT: Which actually makes me think...what are the things we all got wrong, in retrospect, about the Nats?


I think it's mostly pitching. There have been a lot of overpeformers offensively (all the guys you listed and Harper), but they've been balanced out by Werth and Morse missing huge amounts of time and Ramos going out for the season. Detwiler's actually the biggest individual surprise, but more than that all five starting pitchers stayed totally healthy.
   56. jmurph Posted: September 21, 2012 at 11:08 AM (#4242018)
Eso:

I think you got most of it. Personally (and I say this as a Washingtonian that watches the Nats way more than I watch my actual favorite team), I didn't think the offense would be good enough, I thought the Phillies would be good enough to win the division, and I thought the Marlins would be better. So I had them at maybe 85 wins, getting the wild card, but not good enough to get to 90+.
   57. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: September 21, 2012 at 11:25 AM (#4242039)
Huh, nice catch there Joey. (You obviously remembered this from all the way back in February, which is even more amusing!) Gotta give credit to Sutcliffe, he was right and for the right reasons to boot.

Reading what Sutcliffe had to say and then reading Dial's crap is hilarious. It's like Einstein being followed by Dennis Murphy from the old "Don and Mike Show".
   58. bunyon Posted: September 21, 2012 at 11:35 AM (#4242051)
(I suppose one key thing we almost all got wrong wasn't about the Nats at all but rather about the Phils.)

Age. Everyone got age wrong. Even those of us who "know" that "proven veteran" is BS. Most people (including myself) knew that the Phils were aging and that the Nats were young. We all thought the Phils had one more run left in them and that the Nats were a year or so away.

Turns out being young, healthy and inexperienced is better than being old, gimpy and experienced.
   59. Chris Needham Posted: September 21, 2012 at 11:36 AM (#4242053)
EDIT: Which actually makes me think...what are the things we all got wrong, in retrospect, about the Nats?

I think most of what we got wrong was how weak everyone else in the league is. It's really a down year, it seems.

The other item: how good the defense is. I haven't looked at the metrics, which may or may not debunk this, but they turn out an above average player at every position but left. Aside from Zimmerman, none of them are ++++ defenders, but they're all solidly above average, in the upper third at their positions. Desmond is very good. Espinonsa is near gold-glove caliber. LaRoche has a decent argument for the GG. Werth can still field well. Bryce is a bit raw and makes mistakes, but can run 'em down, too. Just like the way the Rays stormed to the front by turning a horrid defense into a solid one, the Nats have done the same just by trusting some of their players and (as in the case of Desmond) playing the position more smartly.

Combine that with a pitching staff that allows fewer balls in play than most, and the runs allowed turnaround has been huge. I think they'll end up on the order of 70 or so runs better with a better offense too.
   60. Chris Needham Posted: September 21, 2012 at 11:39 AM (#4242057)
One other item: The offensive turn-around, which even mid-season has been dramatic, is an underrated/underreported story.

Basically, the Nationals had been teaching (for years) the old Minnesota Twins opposite field approach in the minors and majors. Davey had the heft to get the organization to change that and they started teaching a more power-focused approach. I keep thinking of how David Ortiz went to MVP candidate just by changing organizations and finding a new hitting approach that played to his strength. I don't think it's any accident that the younger players especially have had monster years relative to expectations.
   61. Bourbon Samurai in Asia Posted: September 21, 2012 at 11:55 AM (#4242081)
I figured the Nats in a close 3rd, possibly contending for the second wild card. Desmond has really surprised me with the bat, and I didn't expect Harper to be such a huge contributor. Also the non-uselessness of Bernadina was not something I was expecting.

I now have tickets to game 3 of the NLDS, by the way.
   62. ThisElevatorIsDrivingMeUpTheWall Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:13 PM (#4242100)
Season ticket holder since day one, and paid the postseason deposit last month.

I agree with the theory that division underperformed a bit. There were pretty big expectations on the Marlins after who they bought in, and the Braves thought they had so much pitching, Medlen was going to be eased into that rotation. The Phillies top-3 SP were still excellent, and regardless of how long Howard was out, there was ok offense there it seemed.

I think the patience shown by DJ helped too, Espinosa had a long slump and wasn't benched. They let Harper and Lombardozzi get used to OF spots. Besides Desmond's power spike, Bernadina was the biggest batting surprise to me, some switch flipped in that guy where he can handle off speed stuff now, or at least foul it off. Nothing else jumps out as very flukey, except maybe a few extra hits from Moore, but he's had a lot of power in the minors the last two years so those homers are probably for real.

I had kind of given up on Detwiler, he looked like he could never get through a lineup three times, and by his own admission had lost his curveball. Didn't think Gio would have this kind of control either, but they did get somehwat lucky with the health of their BETTER pitchers. Lots of key guys missing time except LaRoche kind of sets them up to feel pretty good now about making up for Strasburg.
   63. Moloka'i Three-Finger Brown (Declino DeShields) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:54 PM (#4242135)
Another of the few Nats fans here.

One other factor: The bullpen isn't dynamite, but it's righted itself somewhat over the course of the season. Clearing Lidge and Rodriguez out of the way has been huge, and Storen is returning to form. Clippard's been shaky for awhile now, but he had a couple of great stretches. I love how Davey's used Stammen and Gorzo, turning them into 4-out relievers (and tending to save Gorzo for long relief).
   64. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:59 PM (#4242138)
And now it suddenly looks like we may well have a new secret weapon on our hands in Christian Garcia.

He's only pitched seven innings in the majors so far, but I absolutely love what I have seen to this point. Davey shouldn't be afraid to use him more frequently.
   65. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: September 21, 2012 at 01:03 PM (#4242140)
Which actually makes me think...what are the things we all got wrong, in retrospect, about the Nats?


Speaking for myself I can think of a few things the Nats have done better than I expected;

1. The health of the pitching has been a big issue. They're going to wind up with three guys making 30+ starts and 27/28 from the "4th and 5th" starters. Just about any team in baseball if their five starters in April are healthy enough and good enough to make ~145-150 starts is going to be successful.

2. They've done well to avoid the sink hole. The Red Sox have turned this into an artform in recent seasons, every year features a couple of key players going pfffft (this year there were about a dozen of them). Part of that is the Nats just have good players but part of that is going to fall to Johnson deploying guys properly, manipulating days off and just generally putting guys in a position to succeed. The ability to recognize who can and can't play is a big deal. Other than Rodriguez I don't see anyone on the Nats roster who seems like he had a ridiculously bad season from a position of dependency.

3. I never ever thought Gio Gonzalez would do this. At the time of the deal there were rumors that the Red Sox were going to trade for him and I was so glad they didn't. He walks too many people, he's a beneficiary of Oakland, he's going to leave there and suck. Yeah, score one for me.
   66. jmurph Posted: September 21, 2012 at 01:08 PM (#4242146)
3. I never ever thought Gio Gonzalez would do this. At the time of the deal there were rumors that the Red Sox were going to trade for him and I was so glad they didn't. He walks too many people, he's a beneficiary of Oakland, he's going to leave there and suck. Yeah, score one for me


Jose: fellow Sox fan, and I wanted Gio and Edwin Jackson. Don't worry though, I've been wrong about everything else, ever, so I'm not bragging.
   67. Moe Greene Posted: September 21, 2012 at 01:18 PM (#4242157)
Since this is also ostensibly a Reds' thread...

Congrats, Reds! Let's try winning at least 1 game in the divisional series this time around.
   68. Moe Greene Posted: September 21, 2012 at 01:20 PM (#4242164)
1. The health of the pitching has been a big issue. They're going to wind up with three guys making 30+ starts and 27/28 from the "4th and 5th" starters. Just about any team in baseball if their five starters in April are healthy enough and good enough to make ~145-150 starts is going to be successful.

Hey! Also the Reds! They've only had 6 pitchers start a game this year... and the 6th SP, Todd Redmond, only started 1 time because of a doubleheader.

Who would've thought Dusty could manage a team where the top 5 SP's made all but 1 of the starts during the year?
   69. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: September 21, 2012 at 01:59 PM (#4242212)
Were they celebrating in Montreal?

No. Montrealers forgot they even had a team.
[Edit: And beside, the organization has changed a lot. I remember being way more attentive to the Nats when Vidro, Wilkerson, Schneider and Livan were there. My interest picked up again this year because of Strasburg and Harper, but not because the team used to be in Montreal.]
   70. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 02:06 PM (#4242217)

No. Montrealers forgot they even had a team.
[Edit: And beside, the organization has changed a lot. I remember being way more attentive to the Nats when Vidro, Wilkerson, Schneider and Livan were there. My interest picked up again this year because of Strasburg and Harper, but not because the team used to be in Montreal.]


What's your team now?
   71. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: September 21, 2012 at 02:18 PM (#4242232)
I go to a lot of games and I'm surprised by how often I'll still see someone show up wearing an Expos cap or jersey. I have seen it probably five or six times this year alone, so there are still a few people with a connection to the Expos that still root for the team. Probably not all that many, but some.

I THINK that long time Expos fan and Primate fra paolo still roots for the team. He doesn't post here nearly as often as he used to in the past, but he'll still make an appearance in a chatter every once in a while.
   72. SOLockwood Posted: September 21, 2012 at 02:40 PM (#4242281)
Another Nats fan here. The two big things that have saved the Nats' season have been 1) the bench has been just deep & good enough (e.g. Lombardozzi, Moore, Bernadina, & getting Suzuki) to survive the injuries that hit the starting lineup, and 2) the starting rotation is the one segment of the team that avoided the injury bug.
   73. SOLockwood Posted: September 21, 2012 at 02:47 PM (#4242291)
(double post)
   74. The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 21, 2012 at 02:52 PM (#4242301)
Esoteric is also a fan and Andy is at least something of a fan though more Yankees than Nats I think.

I think Andy is the only remaining Senators fan on BTTF, although he does appear to have transitioned to the current DC team without shedding his long time American League loyalties, as have I. The Washington, DC area is full of transplants, so it has taken some time to grow the fan base, but attendance is up more than 5,000 per game, and the long-term outlook for the franchise is excellent. A bit of playoff success could sell a lot of 2013 tickets.

   75. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:02 PM (#4242312)
The Washington, DC area is full of transplants, so it has taken some time to grow the fan base, but attendance is up more than 5,000 per game, and the long-term outlook for the franchise is excellent.

This is a huge understatement. 7 of the 10 richest counties in the US are in the DC suburbs.

With good management, Washington should be in the economic tier just below the NY/LA teams. No reason they can't end up supporting payrolls in the Red Sox/Phillies range.
   76. jack the seal clubber (on the sidelines of life) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:17 PM (#4242330)
Yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeessssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss.

Another Nationals fan registering.
   77. jack the seal clubber (on the sidelines of life) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:18 PM (#4242332)
This is a huge understatement. 7 of the 10 richest counties in the US are in the DC suburbs.


Loudoun, Fairfax, Arlington, Prince William, Montgomery and.......?
   78. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:19 PM (#4242333)
With good management, Washington should be in the economic tier just below the NY/LA teams. No reason they can't end up supporting payrolls in the Red Sox/Phillies range.

I kind of agree, but you also have to remember that the Nationals have a significant handicap in that they don't control their own TV rights. A big factor is going to be how much money Angelos ends up being eventually forced to give the team going forward, because he has made it abundantly clear that he has no intention whatsoever of voluntarily giving them anything close to fair market value.
   79. Random Transaction Generator Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:21 PM (#4242339)
This will help shake the "Natinals" label.

The cratering of Philadelphia and the toxic waste dump that Miami has become have definitely helped Washington.
But I wouldn't put TOO much credit on Washington's rise on those two failures. Washington still had to go out and win the damn games themselves.
   80. jack the seal clubber (on the sidelines of life) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:22 PM (#4242342)
A big factor is going to be how much money Angelos ends up being eventually forced to give the team going forward, because he has made it abundantly clear that he has no intention whatsoever of voluntarily giving them anything close to fair market value.


There have to be a few more mesothialoma cases out there for Pete to go after.
   81. JustDan Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:22 PM (#4242343)
Another Nats fan here, and I was a Senators back in the day. In fact, I went to the last Senators game and the last Nationals game at RFK. Plus, I'm going tonight.

re 75/77 - Howard county maybe (it is both a DC and Baltimore suburb).
   82. Depressoteric Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:22 PM (#4242344)
Loudoun, Fairfax, Arlington, Prince William, Montgomery and.......?
I'm guessing Howard County is up there. Possibly Stafford Co. in Virginia as well.
   83. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:23 PM (#4242346)
Loudoun, Fairfax, Arlington, Prince William, Montgomery and.......?

Fauquier, VA
Howard, MD
   84. Depressoteric Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:24 PM (#4242348)
No way is Fauquier in the Top 10. Unless something insane has happened there in the last two to three years.
   85. jmurph Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:25 PM (#4242352)
No way is Fauquier in the Top 10. Unless something insane has happened there in the last two to three years.


http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/special/local/highest-income-counties/

EDIT: 11, 13, and 21 are all within driving distance, too, and Alexandria City is down at 26. Basically there's lots of money in the area.
   86. jack the seal clubber (on the sidelines of life) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:26 PM (#4242354)
I live two miles from Fauquier and can't believe this. It must be one really rich guy. All I see is Outbacks and various cattle.
   87. Chris Needham Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:28 PM (#4242356)
It's probably bad form to plug this here, but screw it. It's one way to reach some Nats fans...

Now that the demons of the last partial decade have been exorcised, I put together a "Most Natinals" ballot. Which player and players best represents that dark period. If you're interested, take a look and vote...
   88. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:32 PM (#4242361)
I don't think anyone expected a 4.1 (b-ref)WAR out of Harper this year, either, which actually leads the position players (Gonzalez is 4.3). Eventually, but not as a rookie...
   89. JJ1986 Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:33 PM (#4242365)
I always think of Nook Logan as defining the crappy Nats years.
   90. SOLockwood Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:36 PM (#4242369)
Fauquier has a lot of old money gentry -- all those fox hunters. When you add the luxury developments for people who want 5 acre backyards ...
   91. Dingbat_Charlie Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:36 PM (#4242370)
My inner adolescent comedian loves saying Fauquier County out loud.
   92. jack the seal clubber (on the sidelines of life) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:36 PM (#4242373)
It's probably bad form to plug this here, but screw it. It's one way to reach some Nats fans...

Now that the demons of the last partial decade have been exorcised, I put together a "Most Natinals" ballot. Which player and players best represents that dark period. If you're interested, take a look and vote...



C- Wiki
1b- Ward
2b - D'Angelo
3b- Casto
ss- Clayton
lf- Machowiak
cf- Milledge (slam dunk)
rf- Taveras
sp- Drese
rp- Kip
   93. jack the seal clubber (on the sidelines of life) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:38 PM (#4242378)
Basically there's lots of money in the area


Why don't I have any?
   94. ThisElevatorIsDrivingMeUpTheWall Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:40 PM (#4242380)
Chris, I'm surprised I had to write in Jesus Colome.
   95. Chris Needham Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:50 PM (#4242399)
There were a few oversights there. Colome has the "I pray for his buttocks thing"... if you've got an amusing anecdote, that probably DQs you.
   96. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: September 21, 2012 at 03:57 PM (#4242416)
Why don't I have any?

Stop posting on the internet and get back to work!
   97. jack the seal clubber (on the sidelines of life) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 04:15 PM (#4242445)
Why don't I have any?

Stop posting on the internet and get back to work!


Damn Republicans!! Next thing you'll want me to pay child support!

EDITORS NOTE- not intended to hijack thread into political arena.
   98. Chris Needham Posted: September 21, 2012 at 04:17 PM (#4242450)
Oh too late. Andy and the gang have seen the bat signal. ABANDON THE THREAD WHILE THERE IS STILL HOPE!!!!
   99. Bourbon Samurai in Asia Posted: September 21, 2012 at 04:51 PM (#4242511)
87 was excellent. Thanks.
   100. The Yankee Clapper Posted: September 21, 2012 at 05:35 PM (#4242565)
!
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