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Pregame Potpourri

UPDATE:

Dmitri Young just hit a two-out, two-run homer in the first to give the Nationals a 2-0 lead. You want some random Dmitri Young facts (besides the fact he showed up this morning in an expensive suit that was so wrinkled it looked like he kept it in his wallet)? He entered today's game leading the league in hitting during night games (.365) and hitting at home (.400).

Chico allowed a triple to lead off the game, but got out of the jam. Nats 2, Pirates 0 after one.

Back to a few things from the pregame.

Manny Acta explained the decision to platoon Ryan Langerhans and Nook Logan, a decision first reported by General Manager Jim "Scoop" Bowden last night on MASN, and it appears in the notebook this morning (after some draft stuff).

"I felt I gave him enough at-bats," was Acta's short version. But the decision went like this: Acta decided to play Langerhans against right-handers and Logan against lefties. Given that, Logan suggested - and he had talked about it some with Bowden while he was hurt in May - that maybe if that was the case, he should try to just hit right-handed. He's hitting .296 from that side, .189 from the other side - though Acta pointed out that he won two games for the Nationals from the left side, the bouncing single against Baltimore and a driven double against St. Louis.

"He took it well," Acta said.

Langerhans, for his part, is excited to have a rhythm, to know when he'll play and when he won't. For my money, I think Langerhans might be able to compete with Logan as a center fielder. He won't get to quite as many balls, but he does everything well.

The draft: Lots of talk today about that. Will Mike Moutsakas be there? Will they take high school right-hander Rick Porcello - like Moutsakas, a Boras client, but one who will make a lot of demands to get signed - if he drops to the sixth pick?

My money is on Moutsakas, but he might be gone. The other intriguing guy is Missouri State lefty Ross Detwiler, who some Nationals officials love and others don't. (And now, Baseball America is reporting that Moutsakas is going No. 2 to Kansas City. Wow.)

I'll bring you the pick when it happens. (Oh, and here's an update on a Terrapin who could go early on.)

What else? We have Steinberg here today, so please check out the D.C. Sports Bog for news on the hunting habits of your favorite Nationals that should be posted later this afternoon.

Talked to Cristian Guzman about returning to Minnesota this weekend. Check that. Tried to talk to Cristian Guzman about returning to Minnesota this weekend. "I don't want to talk about Minnesota," he said, and then we had a long discussion about why not that I can't really share but wasn't that interesting anyway, but he admitted to liking hitting on the turf, and I'll have a version of our conversation in the $.35 edition, and he said he might talk about returning tomorrow, which I pointed out he would have to because all the Minnesota writers would come looking for him and he didn't want to seem like a jerk in front of them.

In case you missed it, Guzman is hot. Check out his numbers in the gamer here.

Acta said that during the nine-game road trip against AL teams, he'd use Dmitri Young, Ryan Zimmerman and Austin Kearns as the DH, rotating them a bit to give Kearns and Zimmerman some rest from the field, but keeping their bats in the lineup (though they're hitting .253 and .245, respectively).

Who among us would be dissapointed if the Pirates played here for three straight days and one Tony Armas Jr. didn't appear out of the bullpen? (Show of hands, please.)

Have you heard of the concept of the "Reverse Lock"? If not, check out the pitching matchup for Saturday - Levale Speigner vs. Johan Santana - and tell me what you think it might mean.

Here's a Pirates lineup:

Davis - 8
Bautista - 5
Sanchez - 4
Bay - 7
LaRoche - 3
Doumit - 9
Paulino - 2
Wilson - 6
Snell - 1

Xavier Nady still nursing the sore hammy that drove him from last night's game.

Anything else? I'll check in later.

By Barry Svrluga  |  June 7, 2007; 12:55 PM ET
 
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Next: Ross Detwiler

Comments

Bwa ha ha ha ha.....

Levale v. Johan?

ha ha ha ha

"tell me what you think that might mean..."?

stop you're killing me...

Actually, I can't decide if I'm laughing or crying.

Then again, our scrappy little rotation took out Smoltz twice, not to mention Peavy.


Posted by: NatsNut | June 7, 2007 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Barry, how's the team's hit percentage with two outs? Seems high.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 7, 2007 1:44 PM | Report abuse

It looks like Young is the team's most valuable trade commodity, but where does that leave the Nats at first base? I know Bowden is hoping that Fick brings a reasonable return because of his versatility, but I'm not confident Nick Johnson will be able to go every day, if at all. Are we going to see Broadway up if Young and Fick are dealt?

Got my tickets for the weekend series! See you at the Dome, Barry.

Posted by: John in Mpls | June 7, 2007 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Wait, you mean the Minnesota media isn't going to be clamoring to interview Speigner?

Posted by: John in Mpls | June 7, 2007 2:17 PM | Report abuse

John: When Young goes guess who we'll get while Nick recovers (until 2009)...

Batista!!!!

I'm getting ready to sell foam stop signs for the fans above the home dugout

Posted by: Section 506 (After moving) | June 7, 2007 2:20 PM | Report abuse

"I'm getting ready to sell foam stop signs for the fans above the home dugout"

LOL!

Love It!

Tony, who tries, after every game, to make it home without stopping.

Point Number 2: ... we MUST hang onto D. Young until such time as Nickie J. can play every game.

Point Number 3: ... and there goes Mike Moustakas. Who's next?

Posted by: natscan reduxit | June 7, 2007 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Anyone know why Manny pulled Lopez? Game Day doesn't say

Posted by: Section 506 (After moving) | June 7, 2007 2:36 PM | Report abuse

with the 6th pick in the 2007 first year player draft the washington nationals select... ross detwiler!

Posted by: natsinthevalley | June 7, 2007 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Natscan: I'm not sure Nick will be able to go every day at any point in this season. With Young 15 of his last 27 and climbing up the NL hitting ranks, you have to strike while the iron is hot.

This season is already a wash, right? Do you bring Broadway up and give him a big league tryout again? Kasto had taken some balls at first in Spring Training - is he even an option there?

Posted by: John in Mpls | June 7, 2007 2:44 PM | Report abuse

I guess "pitching, pitching, pitching is still the mantra...

Posted by: Juan-John | June 7, 2007 2:44 PM | Report abuse

... and it's Ross Detwiler!

... you know, the more I see of Chico, the more I think he's a real diamond in the ... well, in the diamond. From AA to DC in one easy step. He's a keeper in my book.

Posted by: natscan reduxit | June 7, 2007 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Natsinthevalley: Manny apparently pulled him for not, as Slowes put it, "not breaking any Olympic records running to first."

Posted by: John in Mpls | June 7, 2007 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Well its Detwiler so:

" The other intriguing guy is Missouri State lefty Ross Detwiler, who some Nationals officials love and others don't. "

Who loved him, who didn't, and why?

Posted by: kball | June 7, 2007 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Well it is Detwiler so:

" The other intriguing guy is Missouri State lefty Ross Detwiler, who some Nationals officials love and others don't. "

Who loved him, who didn't, and why?

Posted by: kball | June 7, 2007 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of D. Young, my girlfriend was watching the game the other night and made a startling observation: he is not a little guy. Seriously, I wonder about her sometimes. But she suggested that instead of running out groundballs to first and then running back to the dugout, he ought to be allowed to run the entire diamond after every hit.

Of course I immediately told her she was crazy, because he's on a hitting streak and it would be absolutely mad to lose a single pound.

I bet you all agree with me. What a great sport that we can say we're the sane ones.

Posted by: Section 506 (After moving) | June 7, 2007 2:48 PM | Report abuse

To Section 506 (After moving):

As Crash says, "never mess with a streak"

(Or words to that effect.)

Posted by: Dancer13 | June 7, 2007 2:56 PM | Report abuse

... well John in Mpls, I'd be quite happy to see Larry B. brought back, and for him to be successful in the show. But I, like a few others, have become a die-hard Dmitri fan, and for the life of me, I'd rather see Ryan Church on the trading block first.

... having said that, if JimBow goes ahead and makes a deal for someone in exchange for DY, I hope it'll be a guy who's got at least a couple of years under his belt. I mean, if the Ntas turned into a team of only prospects, that wouldn't pull the dollar bill out of my pocket, even if I lived just across the river. You gotta have someone with proven ability and name to round out the roster.

... who'd you like to see in a trade for Dmitri? I mean, what level and position would you like?

Posted by: natscan reduxit | June 7, 2007 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Detwiler looks potentially NASTY.

BUT, my guess on the mixed reviews are some people might think that wirey frame (6'4" 185) is too similar to John Patterson. And his mechanics look a little erratic. A lot of his pitches were out of the strike zone but getting college hitters out. Of course, big league hitters don't swing at that stuff.

On the upside, if he fills out to say 215-220, he could end up throwing 96-plus regularly as a lefty with a devestating 12 to 6 knuckle curve.

Will be fun to watch!

Posted by: Ryan | June 7, 2007 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Speaking for myself, I'd hate to see Young go. He's fun to have around and I can't see where we'd get anybody to compare with him. But......I'd say it's almost a forgone conclusion that he'll be traded.

Posted by: Dancer13 | June 7, 2007 3:12 PM | Report abuse

For Dmitri I would like either a AA center fielder who projects to be a Torii Hunter type, OR a 1st baseman, AA or AAA who projects to be decent.

I just don't have much faith in Nick's body anymore, I think we need to get young and powerful there, and fast.

Posted by: NattyDelite! | June 7, 2007 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Chief! Got your first win last night and you are gunning for your first loss.

Posted by: Section 506 (After moving) | June 7, 2007 3:17 PM | Report abuse

Damn it Chad.

Posted by: Ryan | June 7, 2007 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Natscan,

I'm not necessarily advocating for Young to be traded, but rather accepting it as part of The Plan. It seems like it's inevitable, and if that's the case, then you can't wait to pull the trigger until Nick Johnson is healthy.

I don't know what the market is going to be for a guy like Young, who is a defensive liability and a cast-off last year, but who really seems to exorcised his demons, is a clubhouse guy, and is producing at a high level. Of course, I'd like pitching in return, but I don't know how much a team is going to give up for a postseason rental. We'll have to see who is in contention at the deadline, and what they can give up.

Posted by: John in Mpls | June 7, 2007 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Jason Bay should never have been traded away. Who'd we get in that trade? Was he the Einar Diaz trade? Because if he was...there is no animal made as stupid as Omar Minaya. I don't care about the team being contracted. Diaz? If so, I'm disgusted.

Posted by: NattyDelite! | June 7, 2007 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Chad will probably blame Barry for jinxing him with his pre- and post- bereavement ERA story.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 7, 2007 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Young also is someone the fans have bonded with, which is surprisingly untrue for Zimmerman. I'm guessing because he's young. Er, not Young. Every team needs a character.

Dmitri only has a one year contract, right? We're not losing much by keeping him. Would a playoff team really want him?

Posted by: Section 506 (After moving) | June 7, 2007 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Bowden believes in getting better at the trade deadline (although you couldn't tell that from last year failure to trade Soriano), and Barry has pointed out that at least some of The Plan's success is predicated on the performance of players like Young, who can be traded for prospects if they create a market for themselves.

I agree that we can't bank on Nick Johnson being healthy, let alone durable. But keeping Young and Johnson on the roster in 2009 seems redundant to me.

Please don't think I'm down on Dmitri. I've loved watching him play this year, and I think his performance is one of the season's best stories. I'm just saying we need to be realistic here.

Posted by: John in Mpls | June 7, 2007 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Dave Jagelar was taking the rap for this due to his pre-game radio interview with Chad today (excerpt: "the invisiball is back").

---

Chad will probably blame Barry for jinxing him with his pre- and post- bereavement ERA story.

Posted by: natsfan1a | June 7, 2007 3:42 PM | Report abuse

I was just looking at Jason Bay's stats on MLB.com, and the ProTrade sidebar features Dmitri Young in the "Market's Best and Worst" section. His value is up 19%.

Just saying.

Posted by: John in Mpls | June 7, 2007 3:47 PM | Report abuse

I was just looking at Jason Bay's stats on MLB.com, and the ProTrade sidebar features Dmitri Young in the "Market's Best and Worst" section. His value is up 19%.

Just saying.

Posted by: John in Mpls | June 7, 2007 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Keep Dimitri, trade Chad.

Posted by: Dancer13 | June 7, 2007 3:51 PM | Report abuse

why was Chad even in the game today? He's pitched the last two nights, and with a tough road trip coming wouldn't Manny want Chad to be fresh heading into Minnesota tomorrow? Couldn't he have used Abreu instead?

Posted by: e | June 7, 2007 4:30 PM | Report abuse

I can't remember the last time you asked us if we knew what a reverse lock was and then named a Nats pitcher against somebody, but the Nats pitcher won. So, I guess reverse lock means the Nats win.

Posted by: markfromark | June 7, 2007 6:34 PM | Report abuse

"I'm just saying we need to be realistic here."

Hi John,

... no question about realism being a necessity. The realism I'm pursuing in this particular issue is not an on-field reality, but a fan interest one. I think the fact that Dmitri has bonded with the fans and vice versa should be something the team would like to maintain.

... I have no quibble with your field-of-play assessments.

Posted by: natscan reduxit - hoping this thread is still active | June 7, 2007 6:40 PM | Report abuse

I think Dmitri becoming a fan favorite was not something the Nats expected.

What happened to the other fan favorites? Chad has frustrated on the mound, Schneider has frustrated at the plate, and I'm not sure Zimmerman had a chance to equal last year's performance. Young has been exciting to watch, a clubhouse plus, and an all-around affable guy with a contagious smile.

I think you're right, the Nats want that kind of relationship between a player (or players) and fans. I think they expected we'd feel that way about someone else.

Posted by: John in Mpls | June 8, 2007 11:37 AM | Report abuse

John, I think Bowden thinks HE's the fan favorite. And I'm pretty sure Kasten thinks we're paying to see HIM.

Posted by: cevansq | June 9, 2007 10:21 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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