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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

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Zimmerman has what they call "a live arm". He's gonna be good if he stays healthy.

Ummmm, forgive me, but 'why' do we care about Jayson Werth anymore?

Actually, I hope he plays really, really well....against the Braves, Marlins, Mets and the rest of teh National League.

awh--it is less about Werth, and more a quick summary about the Nationals. Not dissimilar to the write-up before the Mets series. Of course Werth is going to be mentioned in the context.

"Numbers aside" is never a great way to start a sentence about a baseball player.

Werth is a nice ballplayer but, the Nats are paying him big bucks to put numbers in the R, H, HR and RBI columns. I just hope Mr. Zuckerman is still talking about his intangible influence on the team when he talks to the correspondent for the Nats' next opponent.

Where's teh smart money on whether Blanton bounces back tonight? I like him to put together 4 nice frames, then a stinker, then leave with men on in the 6th. 5.2 IP, 7H, 4ER.

Intangibles alone are worth $8-10 million per year IMHO.

Why didn't the Nats pick up working the count from Adam Dunn, who's gotten on base at an even healthier clip than Werth over their careers?

And so far, our 1.5 million dollar replacement has more HR, RBI, BA, & OPS.

Forgive me for not worry about the prospect of facing the Nationals' proven veterans, including two starters with a career ERA+ of 97 (Livan and Marquis) and Lannan with a career ERA+ of 103 (87 last year). Those probably shouldn't be your first talking points when you're asked to give an overview of your team.

They aren't there yet but I don't think the Nats will be in last place in the NL East. I can see them winning this game tonight then getting schlacked the next two. I'm hoping to see Blanton with some consistency and stamina passed the 4th inning. If he gives up only 3 runs i'll be impressed.

I think the Nats are better than the Mets...assuming Zimmerman isn't gone long-term with this latest injury.

A few people seem very defensive about a guy predicting his favorite team is going to win 75 games.

He's not saying they're GREAT. He's just saying they're better.

"I like him to put together 4 nice frames, then a stinker, then leave with men on in the 6th. 5.2 IP, 7H, 4ER."

That's what you'd "like?"

I'd like if he pitched 7 or 8 shut out innings. I'd like it if he struck out 10 batters. I'd like it if he were basically unhittable.

Of course, what I believe will happen is closer to what you'd like to happen.

Blanton does usually struggle to start a season, but if he can't keep a team in the ballgame vs this lineup minus Zimmerman, thats a damn shame.

TMC, I wasn't commenting on whether he thinks he has a good team, but that his first talking points were Marquis and Livan. His first talking points should have been the back end of the bullpen, a middle of the order that has both Zimmerman and Werth, and Jordan Zimmermann possibly becoming a frontline starter.

I'm probably being needlessly picky,though. It's been a rough morning.

Prediction for tonight's game:

Phillies win 4-3

Werth goes 3 for 5 with 3 soloe HRs but also two inning ending DPs in the later innings with RISP each time.

EastFallowfield:
"Why didn't the Nats pick up working the count from Adam Dunn, who's gotten on base at an even healthier clip than Werth over their careers?"
-- because Werth can play a defensive position

ChrisinVA:
""Numbers aside" is never a great way to start a sentence about a baseball player."
-- generally true, but not when all you have to go on is a single 9-game stretch. Werth had much worse stretches for much longer last year, and still wound up being one of the 3-4 best outfielders in the NL.

What, Werth shows up and all of a sudden, the Nats' players are like..."Wait, what? We don't have to swing at balls out of the strike zone? Holy crap, we've been doing this all wrong!"

Hell, Dunn posted a negative UZR as a DH.

***What, Werth shows up and all of a sudden, the Nats' players are like..."Wait, what? We don't have to swing at balls out of the strike zone? Holy crap, we've been doing this all wrong!"***

Its the beard...that thing has a mind of its own.

I'm predicting 6 IP and 3 ER from Joey Bag o' Donuts tonight. Are Philly fans going to take over the National's stadium again this year?

because Werth can play a defensive position.


What does that have to do with working the count?

I find it funny to think that a bunch of professional baseball players suddenly learn the virtue of patience at the plate after having played with Jayson Werth for a month and half.

You'd think they would've picked that up after playing baseball their entire lives since before they were teenagers, after having watched baseball their whole lives, after having been coached by several different men who, no doubt, espoused such an approach. Hell, I don't even play baseball, and I know the virtues of patience at the plate.

Mike:

Cause the original question was, why didn't they get Dunn instead of Werth, and he was all like, "cause Werth can play a defensive position" which then i was all like, yo, he's got more value, thats why natinalz paid him dawg.

Werth can work the count, steal bases along with 25 hr power, throw people out at home, mess with other player's wives, and GIDP until your face turns blue. FIVE TOOLS BABY!

i kinda miss him.

In 1-2 years, the Nats could be dangerous with a core group of Werth, the Flying Zimmermans, Strasburg, Harper, etc. They also still have that young catcher that was injured all last year and even a good defensive backup in Ramos (the guy they got in the Capps trade). Sure there are still a bunch of holes there but they have shown a willingness to spend money and they play in a big enough market to support it if they ever start winning and attract enough fans. They're not there yet but they just might be in a couple of years. I'd be mildly excited if I were a Nats fan.

hey, its 9 games in and Nats fan like what Jayson Werth brings to the team even if he hasn't filled up the stat sheet yet. Sounds fair to me.

Lets make it his first 12 games that he struggles and not deal with it again until they visit CBP in early May and we can have another tantilizing week of banter centered around "should Phillies fan boo Jayson Werth?"

On a side note, how's this for a terrible draft. In 1997, the then-Expos had 8 picks in the first 52 (similar to the Rays in the upcoming draft). They didn't produce a single player out of those 8 picks. Out of those 8 1st round/supplemental round picks, only 2 ever saw the Majors and neither produced a Career WAR over 1.0.

Ouch.

Then from 1998-2002, they drafted 5th, 6th, 5th, 6th and 11th overall and didn't hit on any of them. You'd think with all those high picks, they'd have gotten something. When someone complains about our drafting, go look at a team like the Nats. At least when we had high picks, we got guys that panned out like Burrell, Utley, Myers, Floyd, Hamels etc.

That's the major difference between us winning a WS in 08 and the Nats finishing 5th.

Unless Werth does something like make an obscene gesture or rip us in the media, there shouldn't be any booing of a guy that was a major piece of our recent run of sucess.

NEPP: agreed obviously, but its kind of a rhetorical since its pretty inevitable to be the topic of every talk radio/sports page in the town leading up to that series.

And since the Nats might be mathmatically eliminated from the playoffs on May 4th, I guess thats really the only worthwhile topic to discuss that series.

Hell, Dunn posted a negative UZR as a DH.

Now that made me laugh! Good one NEPP.

On the other hand, Nats should have picked up working the count from Dunn BECAUSE he can't play defense. They had to look at him and say, why does this guy have a job? The answer, OBP and power.

Cliff Corcoran of SI in MVP Watch on Howard says he is "consistently finishing higher on the ballot than he deserves."

I guess this guy is the one who knows what the MVP candidates deserve and the people who vote don't know. What arrogance! These guys love to make comments to make themselves seem important and knowledgeable. Or maybe the Phils have become perennial winners it's fashionable to bash them.

Beerleaguer: Is there anything my readers should know about the Nationals, based on spring training and the first nine games of the season?

Nats Insider: The pitching staff has been much better than I think most people thought it would be, especially with Stephen Strasburg rehabbing from Tommy John surgery.

Especially? huh? how does that make the staff much better than most people thought it would be ?

So far Dunn + Willingham have been much better than Werth + LaRoche. As a Nats' fan I would be curious to see all season how their numbers compare all season.

LaRoche though does his 'Rip Van Winkle' every year through May where he is one of the worst hitters through Memorial Day usually only to magically wake up & be productive later in the season.

Little Ollie- great, now you've gone and done it. You just set off the 'Ryan Howard praise' and 'Media hates Philly' Google alerts on Jack's computer.

PB, I think he meant the opposite of what you understood - as in, you'd think they'd be bad, especially since Strasburg is out.

That's at least the 3d blatant misinterpretation of a post on this thread. Is everyone hung over around here?

"What, Werth shows up and all of a sudden, the Nats' players are like..."Wait, what? We don't have to swing at balls out of the strike zone?"

Yeah, I share your & Fatalotti's skepticism. This strikes me as one of those claims that fans, and sometimes even players, make because it sounds superficially plausible & you'd like to think it might be true. But, I'd be fairly astonished if the actual end-of-season numbers back up this contention.

$147 million? i guess i missed that. i thought it was $127 million...???

whoa, these itallics look fun!

Nats attendance through their first 3 home games this year was 27,735. Last year it was 29,582.

The reason for the bump last year? The Nats opened vs. Phils who had a ton of people come down especially for the Monday season opener. This year it was the Braves.

That's roughly ~1850 fans/night. Even conservatively at $50/fan that's $92.5k additional revenue a night.

Nats' fan may hate that the Phils' fans will stuff their ballpark again but Lerner loves it. It means at least $100k additionally in revenue per game & probably more.

MG: When the Nats signed Werth, I thought the tandem of Werth & Willingham would actually give them a big boost toward becoming relevant. Then they went & traded Willingham, while letting Dunn walk away. To me, that's a net loss, not a net gain. And a very expensive net loss at that.

I guess, in fairness, the comparison isn't Werth v. Willingham & Dunn. It's Werth & LaRoche v. Willingham & Dunn. That's a much closer call. But if it's an overall upgrade, it sure doesn't strike me as enough of an upgrade to justify the cost, in terms of both dollars & years.

sorry I think I set off the italics setting. Dont know how to undo it.

til then, this quote cracks me up ....

"I'll be on him," Manuel promised. "I'll be getting on him. I'll be getting on J-Dub. I'll be hollering at him."

Why would anyone resent Jayson Werth? It seems pretty clear that he wanted to stay in Philly, but you can't blame him for taking the Nats rather generous offer. I hope he does well in the rest of his career.
And I could see the Nats finishing ahead of the Mets, if not this year than next.

I would be really curious to run the attendance numbers for the Phils' games vs. Mets, and Pirates but I bet the Phils' fans have given them a huge boost.

Hell, Pittsburgh last year was packed with Phils' fans over the 4th of July weekend when I went out. Lots of Phils' caps when I was in Shadyshide and South Side.

I don't resent Werth at all. He performed beyond all expectations here and got paid.

Joe Savery through 5 games for the Clearwater Threshers .778/1.911 (14-18), 5 r, 3 dbl, 1 hr, 2 rbi, 2 bb, 0 k.

Why the hell was he a pitcher for so long?

I'm surprised no one brought this up, but that Zuckerman guy seems like a real jer8off.

Matt Gelb quotes Werth as saying:

"Last year when we played the Mets, there weren’t any Mets fans in the seats,” Werth said. “They wouldn’t dare come down. I think four years from now, it’ll be the same way in Washington. Or sooner.”

I love the comment about Mets' fans! And I agree with him that soon enough there will be a better rivalry between the Phils and Nats than the Phils and Mets.

Also, it's completely implausible that the mere appearance of Werth could make the Nats a better team, outside of the statistical contribution from his performance that is.

Pete Rose, on the other hand, his fire and competitiveness totally won us that World Series in 1980. No way that foul ball gets caught by Richie Hebner.

I was at one of those Nats Phillies game, There were waaaaaay more than 1,850 Phillies fans there.

does this close the italics? I hope

Carson - Because we needed a left-handed pitcher more than a mediocre hitting first baseman.

Jbird: nope. My weak try??

test

phanatics brother did this to us. He has to stop it.

Ollie - If there is a rivalry between the Phils and WSN it will only be because they are both competing for the top spot. But I will always despise the Mets, even if both teams are at a point of winning 70 or less games a year. It would take a long period of Natinal success coupled with a truly obnoxious fan base to make me loathe them like the NYMs.

(You can use HTML tags like and

    to style your text. URLs automatically linked.)

    Just remember to turn the danged things off.

Oops.

And one more thing. It has become harder to do HTML tagging in the past few years. That's why I stopped doing it. (Of course, I was forever messing it up anyway.)

All I did was cut and paste the parenthetic quote from below the box and it took it. That's kinda funny. Is there no way to turn these off any more?

Andy - I agree (including always hating the Mets), but they have an owner who wants to spend, a big market, some potentially top guys coming up and they're not too far away.

Stop breaking stuff

Quick, somebody try underlining!

8

I don't get the Werth hate either. Given the arc of his career, how could anyone begrudge him taking the money. 5 years ago he was practically out of baseball. He was a long shot to ever be eligible for free agency. If he'd made $100,000,000 million in his career up to that point, maybe you could argue he should take less to stick around and accumulate jewelery. In his situation, I just don't see how you can turn down a king's ransome.

Shawn here's the original question.

Why didn't the Nats pick up working the count from Adam Dunn, who's gotten on base at an even healthier clip than Werth over their careers?

Why in the world did they trade Willingham anyway? I can't even remember what they got out of that deal. Having those two (Werth/Willingham) at the corners would have really solidified their offense.

Thank you NEPP.

nepp: the only thing i remember about the bastardo trade was clout telling everyone how much better the one reliever was than Bastardo.

whoops - meant Willingham trade.

NEPP - They got Henry Rodriguez and Corey Brown, both under age 25. Rodriguez has thrown an insane number of K/9 at every level of the minors. Brown is a blazing fast LH CF. But both are merely prospects.

I'm guessing they traded Willingham to clear room for Werth and to become "younger and more athletic."

Werth/LaRoche are actually making less than Werth/Willingham this year ($17M vs. $18M).

As for the talk about Lerner really increasing payroll, their opening day payroll increased about ~$2M to $68M+. Size of the Werth contract got alot of attention but they didn't substantially increase MLB spending which is probably a smart thing given that they weren't going to be contenders this year.

Willingham was a straight salary dump to the A's. Nothing more.

Meant Dunn/Willingham. Next year though Werth/LaRoche salaries jump to $24M. Dunn is making $14M and Willingham will be a FA.

Frankly, WSN scares me right now because they have such terrible batting numbers. At some point they are going to start reverting to career norms. And it won't be pretty for whomever they are playing.

I was sorry not to see more discussion about Andy's question: "Who gets more plays, SS or 2B?

It's a bit of a trick question. If you rephrase the question like this: "Who gets more balls hit to him, SS or 2B?" you get a different answer.

"Frankly, WSN scares me right now because they have such terrible batting numbers. At some point they are going to start reverting to career norms. And it won't be pretty for whomever they are playing. "

Who, on the Nationals, is scary if they revert to their career norms? Werth and LaRoche? Maybe. The rest of their lineup? Not so much.

I mean, that's not to say the rest of their lineup can't have a good day now and then, but nobody else's career numbers are remotely scary.

Let's see if this does it.

Now that I think about it, Pudge Rodriguez's career numbers are scary, but I don't see him reverting to those for obvious reasons. And Zimmerman is on the DL for awhile.

To follow-up on these comments about Joe Blanton:
.
.
“I like him to put together 4 nice frames, then a stinker, then leave with men on in the 6th. 5.2 IP, 7H, 4ER.”

“I'd like if he pitched 7 or 8 shut out innings. I'd like it if he struck out 10 batters. I'd like it if he were basically unhittable”

“I'm hoping to see Blanton with some consistency and stamina passed the 4th inning. If he gives up only 3 runs i'll be impressed.”

“I'm predicting 6 IP and 3 ER from Joey Bag o' Donuts tonight. Are Philly fans going to take over the National's stadium again this year? “
.
.
.
...the following are the facts about Joe Blanton’s historical performance against the Nationals:

12 GS, 3 – 3, 66 IP, 5.73 ERA, 1.652 WHIP, 8.2 K/9, 4.23 BB/9, 1.94 K/BB

.291/.365/.481 against, .338 BAbip

CAVEAT: In 2010 he was much better against the Nats than the numbers above suggest.

Check this out:
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/tom_verducci/04/12/fastballs.trackman/index.html

Remarkable article on how new technology can tell us a lot more about a pitcher's stuff.

Was just about to post what CJ posted. Durbin 3rd in curveball spin rate. Bastardo showing up in top 10 for rpm slider rate

re 2d or short getting more plays - I assumed hte answer was second but, only because he gets more put outs on throws from 3d and short.

cj - i read that piece earlier today. i wish it explained why some guys have "a heavy fastball".

Not sure if it's something changed on beerleaguer or on the 3rd party system that regulates the internet here, or if our network admin is a beerleaguer fan as well but it is no longer blocked here at work under the sports classification.

Another post to get the comments to spill onto another page and reset the HTML madness.

I'm using Chrome and the italics stopped at Nepp's post for me

Stop breaking stuff

Posted by: NEPP | Tuesday, April 12, 2011 at 11:42 AM

Yeah, my italics stopped on Chrome at that same point. Someone was a bit bold in their HTML choices. Too much HTML is a bad thing.

After reading that SI piece, I'm surprised to not see Lincecum's name mentioned with extension. Watching him pitch, it always looks like he strides so much farther than anyone else in baseball.

Hmm, Italics stopped for me at Nepp's post in firefox, and IE7 as well. not sure what anyone else is using that it didn't.

firefox 3.6.16 linux 64bit here, still see the italics.


You've finally broken Beerleaguer.

4.0 firefox on XP here.

Very interesting article.

Fat: The article says that not every park has this technology & that the data were acquired at an AL park which does have it. It's quite possible (in fact, quite likely) that Lincecum and most other top NL pitchers did not pitch in that park.

He is making 147 mil and he banged my wife. That does it, bad knees or not, I am going to punch the beard off that MFer.

Good point BAP. Would love to see it everywhere. Seems interesting/useful.

A hacky web-dev way of stopping the font-styling foolery?

You might of re-enabled it Formerly lol

Ya now i'm italic'd again.

Nice job Sp'burg. Now I've got the italic cooties.

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