Nationals Baseball: The season?

Thursday, June 30, 2016

The season?

Gotta be a short one today.

The Nats put themselves in the driver's seat by sweeping the Mets out of Washington. The Mets have one strength - starting pitching - but circumstance served to dilute that strength and without that the Mets can't beat the Nats. The Nats can hit. The Mets cannot.

Now the Nats have a golden opportunity to perhaps stamp the season as "ALL BUT OVER". Seven more games at home. Four vs Cincinnati (29-50) , three more vs Milwaukee (35-42), before facing the Mets again with four in NY.

But really it's less about the Nats and more about the Mets. This is a stretch that can put an end to the Mets season easily. The Mets have to take on the Cubs for four games next then they meet the current 2nd place Marlins after that. If they can't take that series from the Marlins they could be facing a 3 game deficit to the fish, let alone a possible double digit one to the Nats going into that next Nats series. If that happens, that series becomes do or die for New York. Lose it and you almost have to write the Mets off. The Marlins* then become the competition. If things break right the Nats could quickly find themselves in a Cubs like position.

But like we've talked about all season, the Nats haven't broken things right just yet. They've had opportunities but have managed to always come back to the pack. Leading the pack sure, but still in it. Tonight is game 80.  That was the story of the first half of the year. The story of the 2nd half could begin tonight. Will it be more of the same or the story of a team preparing for the playoffs?

*In the same time frame the Marlins have games @Atlanta and vs Cincinnati, so the expectation would be that they'd be around enough that the Nats can't shift into cruise control just yet.

23 comments:

1natsfan said...

Getting a little concerned about the bull pen. Needing three relievers to get out of the 8th.
Was that Dusty's intention to get the best match ups possible or did he see something else in the reliever's delivery. Also, if Murphy had not hit that 2 run homer in the bottom of the 8th, the Mets would have tied it in the 9th with Loney's home run off Kelly. The pen was dependable earlier in the season but of late has been suspect.

Froggy said...

The Season?

Is NOT over until it's OVER!

Anonymous said...

I love the fact that the deranged Mets organization apparently is willing to risk the careers of their entire rotation in order to try and hang with us one more year. "Yeah, Syndergaard does indeed have a bone spur in his arm, but keep throwing it 99 anyway big boy, what could possibly go wrong??

Please stick with that brilliant plan Mets; I highly encourage you to run every single one of these guys into the pitching graveyard. Go for it.

Zimmerman11 said...

One of my buddies stepped out and missed Murph's 2nd HR, and then when the Mets hit their 2 run tater, he texted me "TIE GAME!"... to which I replied "scoreboard" and for which he will NEVER, EVER hear the end.

It was a very very good day :)

PotomacFan said...

The Marlins would need help with their starting rotation. Does anyone see the Marlins' ownership spending money at the trade deadline to pick up starting pitching? I don't. And I don't think they will give up prospects either.

Rob Evans said...

I don't want to gloat 'cause the seasons not over, but all I can remember is those troll LOLMets fan coming over here and talking smack all last year. Well, they're eating a little crow now. That's why I don't get trolling other team's fan base. If you have a buddy and wanna talk a little smack that's fine. But doing it anonymously on the internet is weak sauce.

Anyway, for your reading pleasure, Nats fans. I give you Mets fan tears...

http://macksmets.blogspot.com/2016/06/i-want-do-over-by-tom-brennan.html

Kenny B. said...

@Rob, that is glorious. I kind of shrugged at the Murphy move because I thought his performance was overrated due to its occurrence in the playoffs, but holy moly has he been good.

I almost kind of feel bad for the Mets, because they are in a similar position to the 2015 Nats: good team, lots of injuries. But then I remember what a bunch of asses those Mets fans were in the comments section of this blog late last year. And it does seem kind of crazy the degree to which the team is willing to risk its players getting seriously injured, especially the pitchers. Syndergaard may end up as the new RGIII.

Fries said...

I'm not saying this season is identical to last season, but we were feeling pretty good at this time last year (
http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/standings/#20150630). Nats were 9-1 in their last 10 and 3.5 games up on the Mets. Nats didn't make moves at the deadline, Mets did, and we all know what happened..

Maybe I'm just a pessimist

Rob Evans said...

Yea...great point Fries. Still a long, long way to go. But this series was fun lol

Anonymous said...

Mets are in this state despite having Cespedes all year. They can't and likely won't even try to make the same substantive moves they did last year - Cespedes, Clippard, Reed. Even if they add some bat and some relief arm, the likelihood of those moves having the same boost is almost nil. And the Nats really only need to add a relief arm as they have depth to cover rotation and infield. As I see it a Ramos injury would be a big drop-off and likely with no responsive move made by the Nats (A Lucroy trade doesn't fit with this organization's mid-season trade MO).

Mythra said...

Just my guess, but if the Mets are 7+ games back, they'll send Matz and Syndergaard for surgery and reload for next season. Anything less than that and they'll risk both being available for 2017. To continue to pitch with them now is insane. I never wish injury on a player, especially not season or career altering injury, but to keep rolling these guys out is insane. Just asking for TJ surgery or worse.

Anonymous said...

If we didn't just lose 7 in a row we could have cruised to the end. But everything is set up well for the Nats, they have already played the Cubs and Cardinals 14 games this year and the Mets haven't even played either yet. We only played the Braves 6 times and the Mets played them 13 times already. I like the Nats chances.

Gr8day4Bsbll said...

Not ready to call it yet, of course (PLEASE, Harper, don't go there...), but it sure does feel a little different this year than last year at the same point in the season. Assuming Stras comes back and doesn't have any lingering problems, and the pen settles down once Pap gets back (who'd have thought anyone would ever say THAT...), and the injury bug doesn't bit one or more of the key every day players, then I like the Nats' chances too. But that's three big assumptions there. Which is what makes baseball the greatest game on earth of course -- you never know from one day or one week to the next how things are going to roll. Yogi was right, it AIN'T over till it's over...

But as of today, it sure is nice to be riding around flying my Nats flag from my car window as I work in Mets territory this week... Some might call that a jerk move, but after what I had to endure from these Mets fans who came out of the woodwork last season, this is just a mild form of payback...

WiredHK said...

I also remember a bunch of those Mets "fans" coming here trying to pretend they weren't like their a$$hole peers that were making fools of themselves all over the comments section of this blog -- and that some of them "just wanted to discuss baseball" with us.

Those posters were just as "fair weather" as the ones being a$$holes as evident by the total lack of them still being around this year to "just discuss baseball" when things aren't going well.

LOLMetsFan is a total joke.....

Froggy said...

As I predicted on Monday Harper, the fish went and got Fernando Rodney. What a total bargain too.

Anonymous said...

Pen held their own in games 1 and 2 of the Mets series for a lot of innings. So, I give them a B+ over those 3 games. Just sayin'

Froggy said...

Is Espi on a mission tonight or what!

Clip&Store said...

#natgio had got to go. Then again, he wouldn't be in the playoff rotation so maybe we can live with him rest of season..

Anonymous said...

I'm so happy for Espi, he was always one of my favorite players. He is playing like he did his rookie season.

Froggy said...

Now we need to go get Jay Bruce or Carlos Gonzales. My money is on Bruce due to the Dusty connection.

Anonymous said...

Trade Espi when he's hot? What's his value?

Ryan said...

Jay Bruce is trying to out-awful Adam Dunn as an outfielder, no thanks

Froggy said...

Ryan- After watching Bruce the past two games I don't think he is Dunnesque bad in the field and he certainly is hitting better, but your point is taken. Revere is doing enough to stick around so my desk scenario of CARGO in the Nats lineup likely will not happen.