This year I'll split up my Xmas movie stuff from the baseball stuff. That way it's easier for those that want to skip, to do so. Anything for you guys. I'll post movies in the afternoon.
The Nats are rumored to be interested in Brandon Phillips. He's a Red that played under Dusty. Those things might be related in one way (Dusty wants guys he knows) or another (media will just assume any Red who played under Dusty has the interest of the Nats) but it's out there. Do the Nats want him?
Yes - Phillips might be aging but he's still consistently provides close to average offense. In the past three years he's put up a .274 / .315 / .389 line, with a .704 OPS and hasn't really wavered. Danny Espinosa, who is pencilled in right now, has put up a .217 / .279 / .361 line (.640 OPS) and is a year removed from awful and two years removed from "shouldn't he be selling cars?" Brandon also doesn't strike out often, basically doing it half as often as Espinosa does.
No - But if Danny is "back to normal" (assuming last year in total was "normal") then he should provide virtually the same offense as Phillips. Danny .719 OPS last year, Phillips .723. Yes Danny will strikeout but that's part of his game. Other parts of his game are patience and power. Phillips' power is dying and he's not patient at all. Brandon's more of a singles guy and gets more of his value through batting average. Given a choice I like a guy who can work a bad pitcher into a walk or send a bad pitch over the fence than Singly Joes.
Yes - But Brandon Phillips is more than offense - he's defense too. He had been one of the best second basemen in the game in the last 00s and he's still a solid defender at the keystone.
No - But Danny is probably better there. Not much mind you but he probably had a better year there last year (defensive stats... you know how it is) and he's six years younger. Solid money is on Danny giving you better defense.
Yes - But will Danny play? Phillips is an extremely healthy guy. He's played 141 games or more 9 times in the last 10 seasons. One of the things the Nats lost with Desmond was stability. If you get Phillips you can feel pretty good about plugging him in and expecting him to start as long as you need/want him to. Espinosa hasn't played a full season in the majors since 2012.
No - But that one off season was 2014 and Phillips will be 35 (a young 35, but still) next year. At that age you start moving into the "they are old, they can get injured at any moment" part of their career. It's not that big an advantage.
Yes - But Phillips also gives you speed. 23 SBs last year (to only 3 CS). Danny, despite being over half a decade younger hasn't approached that since 2012.
No - But that's a product of the team. Nats were 14th in the NL in stolen bases last year and they aren't particularly a slow team. Danny might be able to steal more bases. We won't know until (if?) Dusty unleashes the team
Yes - But Brandon is a proven veteran. The Nats lost two long time Nationals last year, includin Desmond, who was seen as a quiet clubhouse leader. They need to replace that dynamic.
No - But do they? It's not like that type of leadership kept this team playing at it's highest level. Plus no one is saying Brandon is that type of guy. In fact, he seems to most as overly sensitive about how he is perceived outside the clubhouse causing him to be very sensitive about media matters.
Yes - But Dusty will control that. That's what he does.
No - But that, "overly sensitive to how he's perceived, very sensitive about media" is also who Dusty is. It may work but it may also help foster the paranoid "us vs everyone - fans, media, ownership" clubhouse attitude some of us fear Dusty can bring. Also Brandon Phillips also makes a ton of money. 13 Million next year. 14 million after that. It's not a long commitment but it is a pricey for a guy that's being argued as whether he's better for the team than Danny Espinosa (who will make around 3 Mill this year)
I don't want Brandon Phillips because I don't want his contract. I think he's a slightly better bet to be decent than Danny. Brandon is consistent. Danny has not been. But I think you can get more improvement to the team spending that 13 million somewhere else. As for any attitude thing? Eh. I always prefer to judge a player when he gets where he's going. Sometime a change of location does wonders. New clubhouse, new city, Dusty at the helm? I'd at least give him a few months to see. But really I wouldn't because like I said - I don't want to pay him.
Now if it's the only way to dump Papelbon or Storen and get something worthwhile back? Ok. I can deal with that. But that's not what we've heard so far. We've heard prospects. In the end, I can't believe that this is the best deal out there for the Nats.