Do worry about the Mets if you want. I said this before but the whole "Don't worry about the Mets." comments that come after a mention that the Mets won/lost, that makes no sense. Why do I, Joe Wellwisher, have to ignore the Mets? The players don't have to know how the Mets are doing. It could be distracting. Me? What the hell does me following the Mets have to do with anything? The Mets... probably should go 6-3 in their next nine as well but they are at Colorado and Philadelphia then home v Boston. It's an eclectic bunch of games with a couple of band box parks to start. It's a tougher road so if the Nats do go 6-3 I bet they pick up a game at least. If the Mets go 7-2 or something, well then, hats off to them.
Rendon played last night making the speculation that he was super hurt just that. One of these guys, Werth or Rendon, is going to have to come on this homestand. There's no other way it's going to work... well ok if Bryce gets hot and Yuney is hot and Ian is hot and Ryan is hot, there are ways dammit, but the easiest way is for one of the two best offensive Nats of 2014 to put it back together. Werth had a couple good games before last night. Maybe his bat woke up. Let's hope because he's probably batting first for at least a series.
Oh Matt Williams. The Rockies actually had a tough line-up to deal with last night. L/S/L/R/L/R/L/R you really can't avoid letting a match-up go against you at some point. If I sit down and think about it it's hard for me to really feel like he had a big screw-up. Let's go over the probably thought process.
"Let's see if Max can make it through one more inning. Sure they scored last inning but that was a fluky swinging bunt / why Yuney shouldn't be at third. All in all Max still looks good"
"Dammit, well I can't keep Max in to face Gonzo, now. Not given how hot Carlos has been and how he hits righties. Let's bring in Rivero. Let him get Gonzo and maybe then pitch to Arenado. He hasn't hit lefties great this year. We'll see."
"Dammit, well I can't keep Rivero in to face Arenado now, not after giving up a hit to the one guy he was supposed to get out. Give me Treinen"
ARENADO STRIKES OUT
"Ok he looks good out there. It's a gamble but I think I'll let him stay in. Paulsen is no Gonzo and he hasn't been swinging the bat well the the last few games. Hasn't had a hit this series."
I wouldn't say I would do the same thing. I probably PH for Max in the 6th and try Roark for a few batters then Rivero to turn around Reyes to his bad side and then get Gonzo. Sounds good here but any move to pull Max to get to the Nats middle relief? That's not going over well. The facts are that right now the environment for Matt Williams and the pen is so toxic that the only move that isn't going to get him heat from the fans is bringing in Papelbon in the 9th. Maybe matching up Thorton or Janssen vs a tough righty or lefty, maybe.
I thought about it a bit yesterday and Matt really gets the brunt of things because managers are the last line of defense. If the GM does his job and the players are healthy and playing well the managers job is easy. If something goes wrong he has to fix it and it doesn't matter if the tools he has on hand aren't equipped for the job. The starters are going a bit short, the offense isn't hitting, so the middle relief matters. The middle relief hasn't found dependable arms so who Matt Williams chooses is making a difference. If any of those three things didn't go wrong, we wouldn't even care about MW's amazing ability to pick the wrong guy and the wrong time. But they are so he gets the blame.
Half a thought should tell you though - you try to fix the first line of defense first, not the last one. So watching decent bats like Wil Venable and Marlon Byrd get traded while Tyler "I've got one hit since the All-Star break" Moore sits on the bench drives me insane. I know you could say Moore will be gone when Span is back, but I don't trust that'll be before rosters expand and I don't trust that someone else won't go down to injury again. Sigh.