Nationals Baseball: Discussion topics to put on your index cards for September parties.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Discussion topics to put on your index cards for September parties.

So we have 23 games left and barring intervention from St. Al* - the patron saint of comebacks born of true baseball collapses - the Nats season is over. If not actual baseball results, what can we talk about? Plenty!

The short goodbye: Barry Svrluga brought this up a week ago on the radio but the Nats team we've grown to love (and sometimes hate) is going to be very different next year. They've lost pieces here and there over time; Morse, LaRoche, Clippard, but have had a substantial core that has been the same for the entire 2012-2015 period. This offseason the exodus truly begins as Jordan Zimmermann (most starts 2012-2015) and Ian Desmond (most games played 2012-2015) likely say goodbye. Both have been Nats since 2009, meaning they were here for the lows before the highs, and for Nats fans truly represent the franchise in some ways. Since the Nats like to deal guys they aren't going to re-sign we could also see the loss of other key pieces of this run. Strasburg, Storen, Ramos, and Stammen all hit FA in 2016, and Gio has an option for that year (likely to be picked up but it doesn't have to be). Anyone of them could be dealt. Good or bad, it is the end of an era.

The MVP "debate" : I'm not going to begrudge anyone that thinks some one other than Bryce Harper should be MVP. The fact is if you ask people to vote on it, you are asking their opinion. Who do you think is the "most valuable"? If you want to take it to mean "most valuable to a playoff team" that's fine. If you want to take it to mean "most valuable to a playoff team solely during the post All-Star break pennant race time"... well I'll disagree with your mind set, but you have that choice.** However, the statistics Bryce Harper have put up are hard to ignore. He basically leads the NL in all offensive categories and seasons like that, playoffs or not, are hard not to commemorate. He'll almost certainly be the first non-playoff MVP since Albert Pujols in 2008.

Playing time : So the season effectively, but not officially, is over. Do we see more Trea Turner? He hasn't gotten a lot of opportunities since being called up and he also hasn't really come through (one IF single). Do we shutdown Joe Ross? What about scaling back Strasburg? Do we see them try to work out Storen's issues now - either for next year or for trade bait? Or do we see the working of arms like Solis and Rivero more? What about Cole? It's likely the answer is - none of this will happen. The Nats will play as if they have a chance until they almost mathematically do not. But should they? 

Filling out the 2016 roster : The Nats have plans for all the starting roles. Roark and Ross for ZNN and Fister. Taylor for Span. Some combo of Escobar/Espinosa/Turner for what is now Escobar's and Desmond's spots. But do you like that rotation? Do you like Taylor? And what about the deep bench and more importantly the pen? Do the Nats offer a QO to Span and cross fingers? Do they try to re-sign the under utilized but probably second best reliever all season Matt Thornton? How to best fix a pen knowing money may be an issue? This is more offseason talk than in-season. I'd say start ruminating about it but we'll hold off on discussion till closer to October.

Who's the manager :  Another off-season topic, but one that's far more likely to hit the Nats as a question as soon as the season ends. If Matt Williams goes who replaces him? A hot name is Cal Ripken but that would be another "no experience" guy coming in. MW didn't work. Brad Ausmus didn't work. It's a small sample size and the results are questionable but generally you try to go away from what wasn't working, if only to try a new approach. Bud Black might be the best "former manager, not old" out there. There are always plenty of coaches people seem to like, for instance the former Yankees crew over in SF (Dave Righetti, Roberto Kelly, Hensley Muelens). And there's Bo Porter out there, a former Nats coach that was highly sought after as a manager for a couple years. He didn't win but no one blames him for that and he was mainly fired because he didn't mesh with the Astros GM. That shouldn't be an issue with his pal, Mike Rizzo.


*Most baseball collapses are a combination of one team playing below average and one team playing above. Say 7-13 and 13-7 in a 20 game stretch to make up six games. The 1962 Giants, managed by Al Dark, however ended the season with a middling 7-6 run. Unfortunately for Dodgers fans, they were still able to catch LA who went 3-10 during that time to blow a 4 game lead.  

** I said this in the comments yesterday but I feel like Mets fans saying Cespedes should win the MVP are kind of saying "Thanks deGrom for keeping us with the lead pack in the marathon for 20 miles. But did you see the way Cespedes ran the last 5 miles to get us the lead? He's the real hero!"  Personally I think a deGrom argument is stronger as he did the most rotation work to carry a limp offense until everyone got healthy and Alderson got the Mets real major leaguers to fill in the gaps. 

75 comments:

Fries said...

I'd love to bring Bo back, he really seems to mesh well with players and has a reputation for knowing the game really well.

As for other candidates, I'd love to see a manager, not a leader. Williams was brought in because he's a "leader" but I want someone who will make the final decisions, but rely on his bench coach, pitching coach, and hitting coach to give him opinions. I don't want my manager to think too hard, I want the people with the expertise doing that

Max David said...

I'd try to resign ZNN. He probably wants to leave (and after this year who wouldn't??), and I don't think we can give him $150 million or so, but he's been the most consistent starter. Taylor is more then ready and is indeed ready for opening day 2016, so I'm not sure they even attempt the QO with Span....unless they find someone to take on Werth in the off season which I wouldn't be totally mad about. I'd take an OF of Taylor LF Span CF & Harper RF, but I doubt anyone takes Werth off our hands, and I don't see Rizzo & Lerner paying someone just to go away.

Do we extend the QO to Desi?? $15 million+ (which is what the QO offer numbers will probably be) seems to be a lot to pay for a below average defensive SS, but if Turner isn't ready, do we want Espi starting every day?? SS market seems to be pretty weak. In either case, what I said yesterday stands out, we have 23 (24??) games left, time to start Espi & Turner for at least 19 of those games. In Turner: see if we have a long-term answer at SS, in Espi's case, if Turner doesn't cut it, see if he can be the 1 or 2 year stop gap, if Turner's ready a good closing stretch may net him something in the off season.

On the manager front I think Bud Black's calling card to being on a Major League staff is via a pitching coach. If Francona opts out from the Indians I'd go after him for the manager and then Black as his pitching coach, if Francona stays with the Indians I'd say probably only Ron Gardenhire is the next best choice but would he even be that much better then MW was?? I think everyone in DC wants Ripken (it should be noted I'm from CT not DC so I'm not sure if that's totally the case) but he's the same guy as Williams was: a player who played the same spot every day, every year, most of the time the same spot in the order AND has no managing expierence. And unlike Williams who actually was a coach with the D'Backs, I don't even think Ripken has been a coach! So, let's not go down that road again! My top 3 would be: Francona, Bo Porter & Gardenhire. Can we coax Larry Bowa out of retirement for a year or 2, because this team could use a kick in the pants??

As for the rest of the season: I'm still going down to DC for the Marlins series next weekend, will still listen to Charlie & Dave on XM, but I'm gonna spend most of September watching the Jays & Yankees in the AL East.

Anonymous said...

Tito Francona would be a stretch but man, would that be great.

Side note, I am already looking forward to the Mets being thumped by an actual good team in the first round, losing Cespedes in the offseason, and regressing big time next season. I was actually starting to have a little sympathy for Mets fans after the Wilpon fiasco, but they way they've acted over these past two weeks show that they deserve exactly zero sympathy. All you have to do is look at the fact that many of them ACTUALLY believe that Yoenis should be NL MVP. Sad, pathetic excuse for fans.

Harper said...

Anon - @8:23 : I think the Mets are actually good now. The pre-trade deadline team just hanging around the scuffling Nats? That team had big flaws. But add Clippard, Cespedes, Johnson, Uribe while getting d'Arnaud and Wright back from injury? That's a solid squad. You can question bull-pen depth and if the starters will hold up (or be allowed to test if they'll hold up) but that's doesn't take away from them being good.

Bryceroni said...

I put in one vote for francona, think be would be the perfect antidote for the poison in the lockerroom.

A certain part of me is relieved that the nats totally crashed and burned instead of barely hanging on. Obviously would rather be contending, but the constant tease of 5-6 games is pretty frustrating.

Ah the tyrrany of hope!

Anonymous said...

Love the "Mets will get thumped" in the first round comments. Funny sentiments from fans of a franchise that has never won a playoff series in their history.

Chaz R said...

I'm still hurting from the pain of this week, but think they may pull themselves together to make it close. I don't think they have the mojo or bullpen talent to get it done, but they may well have a last run in them. We are in Miami this weekend for the series.

yin yang said...

Another question: will the nats be able to significantly jack up ticket prices? My impression is that the Lerners have held down increases despite this 2012-2015 run. This year's flameout will make it harder to raise prices.

BTW, as a session ticket holder since day 1, I give the nats kudos for improving ballpark experience and outreach. Eg) when our office had a nats park outing (75+ people) the team gave us a few passes to watch bp on the field and have 2 of our kids hold the finish line for President's race, etc.

SM said...

One of the recurrent themes weaving through this site recently is that the Mets are more or less going to be erased in the first round of the playoffs.

They are actually a good team now, as you noted Harper. And although playoff match-up previews are premature, there is no reason to conclude the Mets can't go deep into the playoffs. The Nats' collapse have given the Mets the breathing room to rest their pitchers (starters and bullpen), set up their playoff rotation, and allow their position players some much needed rest as well.

Because I suffer from premature speculation, my World Series match-up preference would be the Mets vs. Blue Jays--baseball's ultimate Manichean debate: pitching versus hitting.

Bryceroni said...

I think the most extreme playoff matchups are probably 60-40, but the vast majority are between 50-50 and 45-55.

Rob Evans said...

"Love the "Mets will get thumped" in the first round comments. Funny sentiments from fans of a franchise that has never won a playoff series in their history."

And if you have any balls at all, you will be back here to take your medicine if and when it happens. I bet you won't

NatsSuck said...

Rob Evans is sour about Nats season and DC sports in general. The problem Mets fans are trolling every Nats Blog out there is because you guys were given a 20% chance to get to the World Series and an 90% chance to make it to the post season. The Nats were suppose to run away with the division and cruise right into the WS. The Mets were an afterthought. Well guess what homie! Mets are the real deal, they are a completely different team after the All Star Break. No longer the LOLMets.... they got the hitting to go along with the pitching.

If they don't make it to the NLCS i'll come back here and take my medicine. But I think i'll just be back here trolling some more after they make the WS.

Anonymous said...

@SM - "The Nats' collapse have given the Mets the breathing room to rest their pitchers (starters and bullpen), set up their playoff rotation, and allow their position players some much needed rest as well."

Because we all know how well that worked out for our Nats in 2012 and 2014...

If the Mets make it that far in the postseason, it will be because the Nats pushed them to the brink on the last weekend of the season, or because they stay hot for another month plus. I don't see either of those happening.

Bryceroni said...

Aka noone knows what will happen in the playoffs, and people who act like they know what's going to happen are deluding themselves.

Vladdy27 said...

@Bryceroni

Damn right. The Giants shouldn't have even been in the playoffs last year, and they got to ride a one-man rotation all the way to a World Championship. The playoffs are nothing more than a single-elimination tournament to which 1/3 of MLB is invited to. Anything can happen.

JAC said...

I think you're igKnorring the best managerial candidate!

Anonymous said...

@ RobEvans

What exactly is "that medicine?" The worst case scenario is that the Mets perform exactly as the Nats have in the playoffs.

Anonymous said...

And to address next season, even if we lose Cespedes... we'll have a full season from Conforto, and a rotation where Harvey, Thor and Degrom have no innings limits and Matz/Wheeler are our #4 and #5 starters. Good luck with that.

SM said...

Randy Knorr? Managed Potomac to a championship. Backup catcher on both those Blue Jays' championship teams in '92 and '93. Played for those decent late '90s Houston teams. Former Expo.

Solid credentials except for one thing:

What on earth was he whispering--or not whispering--into MW's ear as Washington's bench coach?
Then again, maybe MW has Vincent Van Gogh's ear for listening.

Rob Evans said...

"Anonymous Anonymous said...
@ RobEvans

What exactly is "that medicine?" The worst case scenario is that the Mets perform exactly as the Nats have in the playoffs."

You know what your medicine is. I suspect we'll never hear from you again if you guys get swept. Just look, you don't have the balls to put your real name behind your comments. Why should we expect you to come back here if the Mets get swept. You are the very definition of a troll.

Kenny B. said...

I'm most interested in what the team will look like next year. They key pieces they need to test are Taylor and Turner, so I really hope they rest some of the old guys and let the rookies get consistent ABs. Give Strasburg, Scherzer, and Ross a rest, and see if we can conjure anything interesting from some other arms on the mound. Let Zimmerman and Werth take extra days. Basically just avoid anybody important getting hurt.

I also wouldn't mind hanging onto Desmond. He's below average in the field for a SS, but having Desmond, Turner (if he looks any good), Rendon, Espinosa, and Escobar is a pretty good set of infield options for a team that gets hurt a lot. Desmond could probably play 1B when Zimmerman gets hurt next year. Zimmerman could play LF when Werth gets hurt, and so on. There's still a core there that could compete, with a few patches on the bench and a bunch on the mound.

I'm guessing we'll see Giolito next year, which could fill the rotation spot left by Zimmermann. We've still got Strasburg (who I am convinced is right on the verge of figuring it out, and a lower pressure season will help that happen in 2016), Scherzer (who I think has at least one more really good year left in him), Gio (who remains Gio, but will keep you in most games, and is great to watch when he's on), and of course Ross (who has impressed this year). That's a rotation that just about everyone except the Mets would be glad to have.

I guess what I'm saying is that the Nats would have to screw up a lot of off season decisions to completely put this team out of the conversation in 2016. There are still some very good-to-great starting arms, there is still a great deal of talent in the offense, and if they would just once build the team as if some old guys will get hurt, they will be worth watching. And they still have Bryce Harper, who could—scarily—get even better. They won't be on the SI cover in the spring, but who wants that?

We do need an all-new bullpen.

Rob Evans said...

@NatsSuck - yea, yea, yea...where were you at the beginning of the season? Its' easy to come trolling after everything is wrapped up. Like I said, no balls.

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous 9:56

Good point. The team that fought its way into the play-offs has an edge over the team dulled from coasting in.

I've welcomed the challenge from the Mets for that reason. In 2012 and 2014, the Nats weren't able to turn their intensity back up to where it needed to be for the play-offs. We needed a quality sparring partner. The Mets have provided that.

This time, the Nats will be sharpened for the play-offs and we'll have the Mets to thank.

Anonymous said...

Mets can get swept. That just means the "world series" favorite Nats just got embarrassed and had their season ended by a crappy team that can't even win a game in the playoffs.

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous 10:56

Or all those guys you mentioned can just get injured and miss huge chunks of the season. And when they do finally come back - take weeks/months to get back to form, and by then - its too late. Who knows, maybe you'll even still be in the hunt? But don't worry, because if you are - you'll just blow a 6 run lead late in the game against your rival in crunch time.

We have seen it all before.

Anonymous said...

Sure, just bank on all five Mets starting pitchers getting hurt next year. Definitely the way to go.

Nats Suck said...

@Rob Evans

I was right here at the beginning of the season. That's a clown question bro

vjwhitmore said...

With the same token, we can go into Miami and also get swept. Much will depend on the next several games to whether the team can bounce back or have quit.
I do sense that with certain reports of "injuries", it may very well be that they have conceded the season and are regrouping for next.

W. Patterson said...

I'm looking for a well-played baseball game. All nine innings. I'll catch games on TV but if they keep looking like crap then I'll turn the TV off.

I've no problem with Desmond leaving, and I think MAT can handle CF if Span leaves. I'd like ZNN to stay.

It'd be nice if someone would take Werth. Watching him move in the outfield is like watching myself - and I've 20+ years on him! (Cut your hair, dammit!)

How soon do pitchers and catchers report? (Too soon?)

Steve said...

Re: Mets in the postseason, they are set up pretty well with their starting pitching and their lineup hitting the way that they are. That said, the Greinke/Kershaw combo I think is much more frightening than DeGrom/whoever else you want to pick from the Mets to pitch game 2. I'm not calling for a sweep, because I think the Mets hitting is good enough right now to keep them in games, but I wouldn't start buying NLCS tickets just yet.

Re: Mets next season, they should go into next season as the clear favorite for the division, but we Nats fans have seen how the whole "rotation for the generations" conversation works out... injuries aside, there's no guarantee that any of those pitchers will be as effective next year as they are this year, and we've even seen how a pitcher's effectiveness can sharply decline over the course of the season (Scherzer).

Thanks for the piece Harper, love reading your analysis as always. The offseason will definitely let us know just how serious the Lerners are about winning.

Kenny B. said...

Folks, please stop feeding the trolls.

Anonymous said...

@vjwhitmore

I, too, will be watching the Nats closely to see how they respond in Miami. As Harper discussed, this is probably the last go around for this team as constituted. They've been winners for 3+ years together, and they won't leave behind all they've built as teammates by crawling away. As long as there's a chance, I believe they'll fight.

After the Braves, the Mets will be playing the Marlins, against whom they just lost 2 of 3, and the Yankees, who are fighting for their division. The Nats have a good opportunity to close ground over the next 10 games.

Max David said...

Can we insert Turner into the starting lineup?? Jesus Christ, what is Matt waiting for?? Until we are officially eliminated until he plays?? Why not send him home and send him to the Arizona fall league in October....at least he'll be playing then!

Max David said...

@anon at 1:23, they play the Marlins at home where I believe they are 7-0 against this year. Maybe they'll lose 2 of 3 again, but in Queens they probably win 2 of 3 (remember Fernandez won't pitch since he's got the Nats twice). And the Mets are a better team then the Yankees, and the Yankees just lost Teixeira for the season, and likely won't have A rod since it's in the NL stadium.

John C. said...

Desmond's second half has really put to bed the question of a QO for him: he gets one, and declines it. Book it.

Span's last three seasons have essentially put to bed the question of a QO for him; he gets one, unless the medical prognosis is truly bad. Hip surgery for a torn labrum, even if it includes an FAI (femoral acetabular impingement) is not a big deal. I know; I've had it. And did a lot of reading about it before I had it. Span should be fine. I also am 85% certain Span declines the QO because while he won't get $16M AAV, he's likely to get $11-13M AAV over 3-4 years. And even in the unlikely event Span accepts, I think the Nats would be OK with that. If the meds are questionable, offer Span a one year "prove you're healthy" contract for about $10-11M - but include a provision that the team can't make a QO next year.

Next year's rotation projects as Scherzer/Strasburg/Gonzalez/Ross/Roark. With A.J. Cole, the two Taylors (Jordan and Hill) and Austin Voth as depth. We might see Giolito up sometime during the season, but that depends on how his Spring Training and early season go. If there are injuries, move that up to "definitely." But expect growing pains.

Justin Schell said...

Eric Wedge? He's won in tough places. Who might be the next Showalter-older coach and statesman-to come back into coaching? Davy Johnson? 😁 Come out of retirement LaRussa! Who's the next Madden...a good coach walking away from a poor situaition? Bob Melvin?

Froggy said...

Dude, a week ago we destroyed some team from Atlanta 15-1 and thought we were going to catch the Mets, and tonight we are the Phillies.

Max David said...

So we continue to sit Espinosa & Turner, yet continue to use Jannsen?? Can someone put me out of my misery already??

Froggy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Froggy said...

...what if there were Non-performance clauses in contracts where if you totally Janssened...I mean sucked you would have to pay money back?

Who's with me...

Anonymous said...

8.5

Max David said...

How much longer do we have to put up with these anonymous Mets trolls?? Once the lead gets to 10 can you guys please go away??

Carlo Gitto said...

Mets have taken over the division, and have now taken over your blog. This ain't the twilight zone boys, it's reality. Now we are going after the Dodgers, and home field advantage. I hope the sports writers have seen a couple of Nats games. Harper? If he hustled he might be an MVP. I don't want a nasty little arrogant punk like that on my team. You can have him. We have pride, we have power. We're a bunch of bad ass mothers, who don't take no crap off of nobody. And that's the way it is. Your team is a direct reflection of Washington DC, and our government. Broken.

Natsfan4life (10 years) said...

I'm not worried. 6 h2h left and the crummy melts can't beat us anyway.

Vladdy27 said...

Mets trolls are still more palatable than the average Phillies fan.

Anonymous said...

Well I for one would rather have the best player in the league instead of a championship. I mean we already have one of those things, no sense in whining about something that will never happen again to this city. Been a pleasure to say that Ovi is Cap, Wall is a Wizard, and Bryce is a National.

Believe it or not DC fans, we are living in the glory days. Glass-half-full approach right?

...ugh I just threw up in my mouth.

vjwhitmore said...

It is a real sad state of affairs when in coming weeks, it is the Orioles (.486) making a strong playoff push, while our Nats are resigned to defeat. True it is and would be an almost impossible task to over come being 7 down after being swept. But now is the time to show if the team has any backbone (maybe not win the division, but not go down as lambs to the slaughter).

vjwhitmore said...

Last night's game we struck out 8x (Harper 3 - Desmond 1 - Taylor 3) going 0-11 with 1 walk leaving 10 men on base and also 3 in scoring position.

What this indicates is that they are broken.

vjwhitmore said...

This week Harper has gone:
Monday - 0-4 with a walk (3 ks)
Tuesday - 0-4 with a walk (1 k)
Weds - 3-4 2hr - 3 runs scored
Friday - 0-3 with a walk (3ks)

That equates to a .200 BA (sure the 2 hrs & double pad the slugging)

At a time when needed the most to help save a season.

vjwhitmore said...

It's also disheartening to have the Las Vegas betting odds having us lose again tonight to the Marlins.

Anonymous said...

Bottom line? The Nats talked tough but the Mets played tough

Anonymous said...

The Nats thought they'd be contenders but instead were mere pretenders

vjwhitmore said...

Yes, difference is that the Nats were individuals, whereas the Mets came together as a team and as a team stepped up their game.

vjwhitmore said...

Though the acquisition of Cespedes, and his otherworldly performance. K Johnson, J Uribe, T Clippard, and A Reed speaks volumes of ownership & FO making moves to take that team to a higher level.

vjwhitmore said...

Which is very strange since all the press & media earlier downing Mets ownership & FO, while giving praise to Lerner & Rizzo...

Max David said...

So baseball prospectus now gives us a less than 1% chance of making the playoffs. Sure I guess we can go on a 15-2 stretch while the Mets go on a 4-14 stretch to actually give the last series meaning, but considering the Nats best 17 game stretch at any point in the season was 13-4 from April 28-May 17 which included the 2 most memorable games of the year: The April 28 game that started that streak the game in Atlanta where were started off down 9 or 10 runs in the AJ Cole spot start game, and won it on an Uggla home run (and that started a 13-2 stretch), and the 12th win in Arizona which was the Taylor 9th inning grandslam game (which started a stretch of 9 wins in 12 games) while the Mets worst 18 game stretch this year was May 11-24 when they went 5-13, and the team the Mets fielded back in May was a lot less different and a lot worse then the team they are fielding here in September, so the odds aren't very high for them catching the Mets. With that said, can we start putting Trea Turner in the lineup?!?!?! Christ almighty! How do you know what he's capable of doing if we use him for 1 pinch hitting appearance?? I know Fernandez is a tough pitcher, but sometimes you have to get thrown to the fire! If you want to play every day your gonna have to face the Lester's, Kershaw's, Greinke's (if he stays in the LA or NL), Sale's, Carrassco's, Kluber's (we play the AL Central in interleague next season), Bumgaraner's of the world! Let him see what he can do for Christ's sake!! And if Matt Williams is still managing until they've been eliminated, why does he keep losing with Jannsen on the mound??? It makes no sense!

vjwhitmore said...

Max, you are absolutely right. Put Trea Turner out there, see what he has, see if he has the fire in him against strong pitchers (can't be any worse than what we've seen)...

As I posted earlier this week - The definition of insanity is taking the same actions and expecting different results (MW with the use of Jannsen).

Or MW may be of the mindset "even a blind squirrel can find a nut eventually..."

VI said...

Storen couldn't convince MW to stop using him, so he took matters into his own hands.

John C. said...

I'm always amused by the internet phenomenon of the anonymous tough big talker. Oooh yeah " I don't want a nasty little arrogant punk like that on my team. You can have him. We have pride, we have power. We're a bunch of bad ass mothers, who don't take no crap off of nobody." That's hilarious. Either one of the Wilpons is trolling anonymously on the internet or someone is delusional (referring to the use of the first person plural there). Yawn.

Every fan base has a subset of bandwagoning posturing posers, and clearly the Metsies are no exception to this.

The Mets are on a great run, 27-11 since the trade deadline, and have taken control of the division. It's hard to tell how good they actually are, though, given that they've played very well (19-3!) against teams that are dueling for the #1 pick (Braves, Phillies, Rockies, Marlins). Against other teams they are 8-8, and almost all of that is against the Nats (5-0). And those teams aren't even that good. They've played one series against a playoff team, the Pirates - and got swept. They lost series to the Red Sox and Rays, and split with the Orioles. None of those teams has a winning record.

JE34 said...

It is no fun watching one's team lay down and die... Or in my case, listen, as Charlie and Dave are my only solace. I just don't see how they can keep MW at this point. Put a brick in a nats uniform and place it on the top step.

Anonymous said...

9.5

VI said...

@John C.

Do a search on the pronoun "we" on the comments on this page and, let's say, the comments over the past week. My guess is it's used a few dozen times by Nats fans, and most often by frequent blog commenters. I get you're seething over the collapse (or, as is becoming the dominant hindsight of the media, the "never was") of the Nats, but calling out Mets fans for using "we" to identify with their team is the sourest of grapes.

John C. said...

Meh. Mostly I'm noting that the trolls are anonymous internet bandwagon posturing posers.

Max David said...

And as I said last night IF this gets to 10.5 at the end of the day tomorrow can you anonymous Mets trolls leave please??

Myself said...

To my fellow Met fans, leave the Nat fans alone. As petty as it is, leave them in their blog to make all the excuses and snide comments they want. It's all they have left of a season that began in the heights of arrogance and now lay in the depths of shame. We have more important things to entertain us, like chasing down the Dodgers for home field advantage in the playoffs.

John C. said...

This season isn't the depths of shame. I remember rooting for a team than went 118-205 over two seasons. That was the depths, the days of the "Natinals" and national irrelevance except for as the butt of jokes. Mets fans remember this feeling well, since they've been through times of "LOLMets" and similar irrelevance except as a punchline.

I'll happily take all the heartache that comes with a playoff run that implodes than have to watch a team composed largely of players that should not be in the major leagues. As the saying goes "I've been rich and I've been poor; and believe me, rich is better."

Froggy said...

JE34, is the 'brick in the uniform on the top step' an inside baseball thing?

Anonymous said...

@Myself

The race isn't over yet. The Nats are up against it, but you have Jon '5 run inning' Niese on the mound today. Then you play the Marlins and Yankees next week. We've had a bad week, but it could be your turn next. The standings could look very different in a week.

There's still time for the Nats to find their fight. We have all of 18 games to make up 6.5 games. Hard, sure, but bigger deficits have been made up in fewer games, like 7 over 17. It ain't over til it's over.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, there have been other division races but only one LOLMets born in 2007. I'd maybe be worried if it was the Phillies or the Braves. Now that the Nats are back to full strength, 20 games are plenty to make up 9.5 games on the Mets. 3 H2H, too? The Nats don't even need help. Can of corn.

Anonymous said...

Yea I'm not worried. If the mets go 9-10 the remanding games, all we have to do is go 20-0. Easy.

Max David said...

Today was the final nail in the coffin if it wasn't already nailed in there on Wednesday.

Nats get Scherzer's best start since July, think for sure they are going to make up a game on the Mets as they are down 3 runs in the 9th inning with 2 outs. A hit, a walk, and a homer forces extra's, and then in the 10th the Braves got the first 2 Met's outs before they turned into the Nats: An error and 3 straight walks (2 with the bases loaded) wins the game. They are this years equivalent of the 2012 Nats.
IF the Mets lost every series from here on out AND got swept by the Nats they would finish 5-14. We'd have to finish 16-4. Yah, that's pretty easy! I just want 2 things the rest of the season:
1) For them to continue fighting the rest of the way and not to mail it in
2) To give Turner regular stars and regular AB's. IF this was a 4.5 game or less deficit, your still giving yourselves a slight chance to come back, so I can see leaving the best out there, but 9.5 with 19 games to play and I think you have a better chance at getting struck by lightning walking to the convenience store cashing your $250 million powerball winning ticket, then seeing the Nats making the playoffs as a division champ. Time to let the kids play!

Anonymous said...

Guys. It is over. You tried. You lost. And Bryce Harper is down.

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous 11:10

How are we going to make up 6.5 games if the Mets don't ever freaking lose? And what if we do make that up? All that earns us is a change to sweep, in their ballpark. And what does that earn us? Oh, yeah, another game. So now we're talking about a 4-game sweep, during which we'll see deGrom, Harvey, Syndergaard, and Colon (you can be damn sure Niese will be skipped, even if he did pitch well today). I love your enthusiasm, but it's beginning to border on lunacy.

John C. said...

Anon @ 5:45pm:

The posting you are responding to is almost certainly not from an actual Nats fan, but from a Mets fan who is either (a) lampooning what he (it's almost always a he) perceives as unwarranted hope on the part of Nats fans; or (b) trying to provoke more Mets fans to feel disrespected and post crap on here in response. Quite possibly both. It's the equivalent of posting "This is great news for John McCain!" which became a thing during the late stages (and afterwards) of the 2008 campaign.

Anonymous said...

@John C

Not every fan is a pessimist.

The Mets aren't playing the Braves this week. Let's see how the week plays out before we write off the Nats. The chips are down for sure, but this is baseball.