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10/10/2019 4:21 pm  #1

Washington Nationals

I had to start a thread for the Nationals now that they have FINALLY won a series and will play in the NLCS against the St.Louis Cardinals later this week. What was so satisfying about the Nationals dramatic Game 5 win at Los Angeles yesterday/early this morning was they always lost winner-take-all games like that in their previous playoff appearances, and the tables turned in Los Angeles. In previous years, the Nationals had to watch the Cardinals, Cubs and Dodgers celebrate dramatic Game 5 wins at Nationals Park, and now the Nationals got to celebrate on another teams field in front of 50,000 dejected fans!!

This may be a little petty, but I've got to bring up Bryce Harper. How funny was it that B.Harper's playoff chances and season pretty much ended with a 5-GAME SWEEP at Nationals Park!! I remember Bryce Harper's first game at Nationals Park where the Phillies destroyed the Nationals, it looked like the Phillies would be a championship level team, and the National would be lucky to finish 500, but as the season went on, everything flipped as the Nationals dominated the Phillies this season and humiliated them at Nationals Park which seemed to ignite the Nationals current run through the playoffs!!



10/11/2019 1:15 am  #2

Re: Washington Nationals

Harper played 2018 to -26 DRS, dogging it in RF.  1.3 WAR
Addition by subtraction, good riddance.


10/11/2019 9:07 am  #3

Re: Washington Nationals

Bryce spent his last year in Washington making sure that "$40 million a season" took a life of its own while his performance plummeted.  It's hard to imagine him ever being worth the money the Phillies have paid him but if he can be a Top 20 player who consistently contributes towards his team contending for championships, the Phils would take that in a second.  This season, neither of those things came close to happening.

To Bryce's defense, the Nats dicked around in his contract negotiations, floating a generous number that was to be severely backloaded.  Unfortunately, the Lerners do have a track record of doing this.  Anthony Rendon's extension could have been easily sewn up by now but the Nats played that wait and see game.  Next year, Rendon will either be playing for the Nats for far more than he otherwise may have signed for earlier, or he will be playing for a different team.  Despite their great starting pitching (which won't last too much longer) and their young talent, failing to sign Harper and Rendon in consecutive years would send a very ugly message to the fan base.  Good thing they're doing what they're doing now.

The Nats predecessors and the Marlins are two examples of teams who could not afford to keep young talent together.  The very good Expo teams eventually lost Gary Carter, Andre Dawson, Ellis Valentine, Larry Walker and later, Vlad Guerrero because they could not afford to resign these guys.  Same for the Marlins with so many great players.  It would be hard to portray the Nats, a team in the top half of the league in attendance, television market (though the MASN dispute with Angelos has not helped), and ownership's net worth, as a team who consistently can't afford to sign its star players.  


10/11/2019 12:05 pm  #4

Re: Washington Nationals

Extending the Nats winning percentage after their 19-31 low (I know you can't do that) results in a 107 win season.  No reason they can't win the whole thing.  They have a different feel this year.


10/11/2019 7:33 pm  #5

Re: Washington Nationals

The Nationals are huge spenders and have a payroll around 200MM, having bought Scherzer, Corbin, and extended Strasburg for huge $$$. They are paying Brian Dozier 9MM this year to essentially be a back up now.  they began this all with Jayson Werth's huge deal, extended Ryan Zimmerman (both mistakes) 
Lerner is spending more, per revenue than all but 3 baseball teams (the 3 smallest, A's Rays and Twins) 

Not signing Harper to a disaster albatross contract is smart baseball.  Not accurate at all that they aren't spending big.  they are doing just that.   

Last edited by The Dude (10/11/2019 7:34 pm)


10/14/2019 10:50 am  #6

Re: Washington Nationals

Werth contract was not a mistake. It turned the team and clubhouse around as well as the perception of the franchise. Not many contracts totally have a net plus advantage each and every year. Nobody on the Nats is regretting that deal. Zimmerman's health issues have submarined the value of his contract which was undoubtedly too generous in terms of years but the franchise and ownership group didn't suffer. And the much maligned refusal to exceed the salary cap again this year is turning out not to be the mistake we all thought it was, regardless of how this NLCS ends up.


10/14/2019 1:50 pm  #7

Re: Washington Nationals

I don't believe I said that the Nats weren't spending big.  It's easy to verify this by looking at team payrolls.  In fact, I did say that Bryce was not worth the money that the Phillies are paying him.  The point of my post is that the Nats were a bit deceptive with their fan base by stating that their offer to Bryce was very competitive (which it was as a total figure) while omitting how backloaded the deal was.  When Boras went public with the present value of the Nats offer, it was a bit of a PR snafu for the team.  And with this as background, it would look really bad to lose Rendon a year after losing Harper over money.  That in a nutshell was my point.


10/31/2019 8:05 am  #8

Re: Washington Nationals

Congrats to the Nats! They were unbelievably fun to watch and root for in the postseason. I think it speaks to how important team culture is - minus the bullpen, they were definitely up there with the best in terms of talent, so winning it all is a combination of getting hot at the right time and believing in every guy on the team. Hard to believe they had a worse record than the Tigers on 5/23 who went on to being the worst team in the majors. It will be interesting to see who they are able to hold on to for the next year.

Last edited by dmvpiranha (10/31/2019 8:06 am)


10/31/2019 11:07 am  #9

Re: Washington Nationals

It is hard to separate my own subjective feelings but I would have to believe that even the most objective observer would have to find this to be an unbelievably incredible story.  19-31 in May.  A bullpen that started out amongst the worst in the game which included a counted-upon off-season acquisition with a very live arm who could not get anyone out..  A major injury to their lead-off hitter which stalled the offense. The face of the franchise missing much time due to injury and rightfully relegated to a role player down the stretch.  Paling in comparison all season long to a division rival.  Plus, a postseason history this decade that had been nothing short of dreadful.  And then, guys got healthy.  In-season acquisitions started contributing.  A talented bench player arrived with his Baby Shark walk-up song and completely revitalized the clubhouse.  And then, the postseason to end all postseasons.  5-0 in elimination games, coming from behind in each one of them.  Deploying multi-millionaire starting pitchers out of the bullpen as needed.  The three run Soto single in the Wild Card game.  The Kendrick grand slam against the Dodgers.  The dominant starts by Sanchez and Strasburg against the Cardinals.  And finally, the home field disadvantage in the series.  The Rendon "my price is going up by the minute" performances.  Going down 3-2 with Scherzer unable to pitch, but watching Maz battle for 5 innings in Game 7, followed by Patrick Corbin all but closing the door on the Astros.  Congratulations to the Nats, and their fans.  This could not feel much better.


10/31/2019 10:28 pm  #10

Re: Washington Nationals

What an improbable run by the Nationals to win the World Series when you consider everything they had to overcome, the poor record in May and trailing in all 5 Do-Or-Die Elimination games as GW Mayhem pointed out!! I know that the Nationals had a great record(maybe the best in MLB) since the 19-31 start through the playoffs, but they seemed to struggle against the better teams, even when they started playing at a high level from June through the end of the season. I thought they would lose the wild card game because they seemed to feast on bad teams, but once they beat the Dodgers, I knew things had changed, so I started this thread after the Nationals won Game 5 in Los Angeles!! HA!

Another satisfying aspect of the Nationals winning the World Series is they eliminated the Dodgers and Astros in pretty much the exact same fashion that the Cardinals, Giants, Cubs and Dodgers eliminated the Nationals in previous playoff series!! The Nationals atoned for all those playoff disappointments with this run!! 

About next year, I think Anthony Rendon is gone because a team will offer him a FOOLISH Bryce Harper/ Manny Machado type deal that will eventually cripple their franchise. I mean, Philadelphia and San Diego are just in year 1 of those massive contracts and I'm sure both franchises are saying to themselves..."What The Hell Were We Thinking, How Can We Get Out Of This Mess"!! Plus, the Nationals have to give the Franchise Crippling contract to Juan Soto whenever he's up, not Rendon. The Dude mentioned Bryce Harper "dogging it" when he was a National, that's one thing you could NEVER accuse A.Rendon of doing, so I'd expect him to live up to the big contract he's about to get, unlike Bryce Harper and Manny Machado.  


     Thread Starter

7/23/2020 3:41 pm  #11

Re: Washington Nationals

The Nationals will begin "defense"(can you really consider this 60-game season with no fans and key players choosing to sit out during a pandemic legit??) of their World Series crown in a few hours against the Yankees, but the big news is that Juan Soto has tested positive for the coronavirus!! J.Soto will need 2 straight positive tests before he is allowed to play again. Key players(like Soto) testing positive for COVID could be a huge problem for baseball and other sports since COVID has started to peak again in several states. 

Do you guys think baseball(or the other sports) will be able to complete a full season in 2020?

     Thread Starter

7/24/2020 7:29 am  #12

Re: Washington Nationals

Is that positive tests for negative - has Trump turned the terminology of the rest of the world upside down?  I saw or heard the two positive test results on the news, but I would have thought he needed two "negative" results before he could play.


7/24/2020 9:38 am  #13

Re: Washington Nationals

LOL yeah, Soto will need 2 negative tests before he can play again, but testing negative would be a positive for him and 2 negatives equal a positive in math so I was kind of right!!!  But seriously, I'm sure there is some concern in the organization as to whether Soto spread it to anyone on the Nationals(or the Orioles) because he played in 2 exhibition games against the Orioles earlier this week. 

     Thread Starter

7/28/2020 10:11 am  #14

Re: Washington Nationals

It's a long season (well, not really this year, but that's such a baseball thing to say) but so far, I would say that the Nats don't exactly look like their hearts are in the 2020 season.


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