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Down on the farm

So the off day brought a story about what's possibly to come for the Nationals. I've documented before that some pitchers were promoted from Class A Potomac to Class AA Harrisburg. But this morning's $.35/.$50-edition has a more in-depth look at Jordan Zimmermann, Cory VanAllen and Zech Zinicola.

Those three, though, are just representative of the renaissance in the Washington farm system. I'm skeptical about all this stuff, especially about things I haven't seen, but I kind of believe in this whole rebuilding-the-farm-system thing. There are lots of good arms down there, and this is all about quantity of quality. In other words, it's somewhat arbitrary who I'm writing about now. The idea is to stockpile talent and then see who survives the grind of the minor leagues. Balester, Zimmermann, Smoker, McGeary, Alaniz, Clippard. As long as the Nationals produce a couple of major league pitchers from that group, they'll have acheived that goal.

Boz couples my story with a look at who might be already identifiable as core players in the majors. These are obviously debatable, but it's an interesting take -- and has some information about who they might pursue in the future. Don't think the Nationals haven't discussed C.C. Sabathia, Ben Sheets, Orlando Hudson and Rafael Furcal internally. They have, and they will continue to do so. It'll be interesting to watch if they can land players like that.

The notebook has some info on how Nationals Park is playing thus far. Hard to say how the Nationals' pathetic power is playing into how the park is playing, but it's something to watch over the course of the summer.

I'm awaiting Continental 2527 from Reagan-National to Houston-Bush International. (Wow, that's a Republican itinerary.) I'll talk to you from Minute Maid Park and such later on today.

By Barry Svrluga  |  May 6, 2008; 6:17 AM ET
 
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Next: Lineups from Houston

Comments

Music to my ears... It will be interesting to see if the nationals can keep up this renaissance on the farm when they are trying to be competitive at the major league level. The farm system typically suffers as teams attempt to trade for established talent and sign big names thus losing draft picks. I hope the nationals Plan includes a continued commitment to the farm system.

Also, for anyone who likes this stuff on the regular National's Farm Authority is a great blog to get news about the kids:

http://www.farmauthority.dcsportsnet.com/

Posted by: VT Nats Fan | May 6, 2008 6:55 AM | Report abuse

Wow - no lack of coverage today! This is great!

Posted by: i hate walks | May 6, 2008 7:12 AM | Report abuse

"Wow - no lack of coverage today! This is great!"

Thank the Redskins Park wake-up call operator for that. He must have gotten everyone up on time yesterday.

And my wiretap into Emilio's office tells me that Barry's first assignment on the Redskins beat will be to write an in-depth feature on the wake-up call guy for the Washington Post Magazine, to run in their Salute to the Second Mini-Camp special issue in early June. All other sports coverage has been suspended for that week, unless attendance at Nationals Park dips down to 25,000, in which case saturation coverage will result.

Posted by: Ray King's Gut Feeling | May 6, 2008 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Great to see the minors getting some attention. Really good stuff, Barry.

It's been great to watch teams stocked with actual prospects rather than the cobbled together rosters over the past three seasons.

Posted by: Brian | May 6, 2008 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Wonderful Sports Page this morning! Good one, Ray re: Wake-up Call! Boswell (how lucky are we to have him?) teaches us to succinctly ask what has been brewing as storm clouds on this Journal: just how far are the Nats from the "dozen core players who define every 90-plus-win team?" I went to sleep last night thinking of this post, in which NatsWin! told us just how far the Nats are from their division rivals, and it is very, very far.

On my earlier comment about drafting a HR hitter, I was mostly being sarcastic, but I would love to have someone in the lineup who Really might knock one out every time he is at the plate, but is also a reasonable hitter/player as well. The Phils have Howard, Utley, Rollins, Burrell; the Mets have Wright, Beltran, Reyes, Delgado (man he got old quick!); the Marlins even have Ramirez, Uggla, Jacobs and Willingham and the Braves have Chipper, Francouer, Texiera. We have no one who you think could knock it out every time. Zim or Nick might get a hold of one or Pena/Dukes might if they get in a few games, but that is it.

I'd just like at least A threat.

Posted by: NatsWin! | May 5, 2008 10:03 PM

Posted by: flynnie | May 6, 2008 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Oh thank goodness, I was expecting to see the usual rants against Boz this morning. Seems like everytime he writes something some people start railing against him. I, however, always enjoy his work. And we should all appreciate his applying some pressure to the need for free agent signings.

Meanwhile, with Carr, Zincola, Schroeder, and others plugging away in the minors, it seems like the Nats could afford to trade a reliever or two away for some position help at some point. This might not be a bad time to revisit the Khalil Greene and Rickie Weeks interest. Sell high, buy low.

Posted by: NatBisquit | May 6, 2008 8:37 AM | Report abuse

Good stuff, Barry. Is Chico (writer) with you this time around?

Ray King's, etc.: Snark rating: 9.5. Also great stuff.

Also, whoever started saying "newposted," as in, "I just got newposted", was brilliant. Very funny and I'm surprised it took this long to come up with it.

(btw, I just had some caffeine, so at the moment, everyone and everything is just great!)

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 8:51 AM | Report abuse

Good work sir Barry. I echo the sentiment that the Nats may want to concentrate on accumulating offensive talent--via draft, trade or free agency--in the next round of development. Seems to be a solid amount of pitchers coming into the pipeline, but there are few power hitters and no one ready at the Middle Infield positions.

Which brings me to Boz. What do folk think about Furcal and Hudson as possible targets? And how much of an upgrade would they be over the current duo of Guz and Lopez?

Posted by: joNAThan | May 6, 2008 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Interesting story, good to see some depth.

CE will be disappointed though, since s/he was convinced that every story that could ever be written about the Nats had already been done, and that to even suggest that there were newsworthy angles still out there was an insult to the Post.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Nice articles about the farm system, but I noticed not a mention of Marrero. I suppose it was mostly (maybe all) written about the young pitching prospects though. As far as free agents go, yes, it is probably time for the team to get the word out that they will be in the market, if only to put FAs' on notice. Also, with the farm system building itself up, trade bait is becomming more available as well. These things couldn't even be mentioned 2 years ago, so as you can see, things are progressing.

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | May 6, 2008 9:18 AM | Report abuse

I wonder if the Redskins boards are complaining about coverage this morning.

"The Post has FOUR stories about a last-place baseball team with zero All-Stars, including one story about the fricking ballpark and another one about random guys that aren't even on the team yet!"

Seriously, how would we react here if the lead story in today's dead trees edition featured guys on the Skins practice squad, and another story dealt with Snyderman hosting parties at FedEx in the offseason?

Instead, Skins fans today are stuck with a SECOND story on oversleeping.

For one day, folks, we have a baseball paper! Hooray!

Posted by: Bob L. Head | May 6, 2008 9:19 AM | Report abuse

Also, thanks to 1a, this headline from the Onion:

"Clemens confesses to injecting self into country singer's buttocks."

Posted by: Bob L. Head | May 6, 2008 9:22 AM | Report abuse

As the point was made clearly on drafted talent--hitting .300 in the draft is good--likewise, free agents don't all work out, either. Most of the ones you want, other teams want, too. Sign them, and some of them will get hurt, or not like it here, or it turns out their numbers were park-inflated, or they go all Zito on you.
So signing half a dozen, sorta like the Cubs did, can work, but it won't be $85M, or even $100M.
Which can work, and I think is sustainable here, but so can judicious use of cheaper talent, and a strong farm system. See Arizona for details.

Posted by: CE | May 6, 2008 9:24 AM | Report abuse

CE will be disappointed though, since s/he was convinced that every story that could ever be written about the Nats had already been done, and that to even suggest that there were newsworthy angles still out there was an insult to the Post.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 9:18 AM

-----

No, CE, don't do it! Don't take the bait!

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 9:26 AM | Report abuse

OK, now that's just unfair. I never said there were no interesting stories, I just said you wouldn't know them if they bit you in the ...

OK, that wasn't fair either.

********
CE will be disappointed though, since s/he was convinced that every story that could ever be written about the Nats had already been done, and that to even suggest that there were newsworthy angles still out there was an insult to the Post.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 9:18 AM

Posted by: CE | May 6, 2008 9:27 AM | Report abuse

too late ...

Posted by: Anonymous | May 6, 2008 9:28 AM | Report abuse

I'll go sit in the corner now and think about what I've done.
Or go back to work, maybe.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 6, 2008 9:29 AM | Report abuse

no, my point is nobody really thought he'd be special at that point. otherwise someone would have given texas something more than a low-A prospect for him. and we still don't know whether he's really any good or if he's just fooling people the first time around.

==


@231--"even texas didn't think much of him a couple of months ago, and they're always desperate for pitching."

So your point is that just as long as we aren't any worse at evaluating pitchers than the Rangers, you're satisfied?

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 9:23 AM

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 9:29 AM | Report abuse

506 and CE, laughing here. Your timing could not be better.

This also made me laugh:

"or they go all Zito on you."

Posted by: CE | May 6, 2008 9:24 AM

Ya'll are funny today. Or, you know, the caffeine is especially good.

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 9:31 AM | Report abuse

my point is nobody really thought he'd be special at that point.
_________________

Nobody except the Tigers apparently.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Here's Baseball Prospectus's 2006 annual on Armando Galarraga:

"Dumping Wilkerson in the Soriano deal was expensive enough, but having to throw in Galarraga might prove to be the really galling aspect of the trade. He`s got the power assortment and the aggressiveness in using it that everyone likes, mixing heat with a hard slider (a pitch some worry that he tips, however). Already a TJ survivor, Galarraga`s mechanics are pretty clean, and if he polishes his changeup, he might turn out much better than all the Rangers` oft-touted and rarely successful homegrown talents."

You guys are just wrong when you say that no one thought this guy was worth anything. This is a talented guy who is coming back to haunt us.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Actually I overstated the case a bit with this--"This is a talented guy who is coming back to haunt us."

"Might be" coming back to haunt us is more appropriate.

Either way, it'd be interesting to look at our evals on him, the Rangers, and what the Tigers saw that we didn't. After all, the Tigers have a TEENY bit better track record at developing young pitchers than either the Nats or TX.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 9:55 AM | Report abuse

I think it's worth noting that our second-round draft pick from last year, Jake Smolinski, is now playing 2b for Hagerstown (he was a high school shortstop but played in left field last year in the GCL). He just turned 19 in February, so he's a few years away. But on the other hand, Baseball America has him rated as our #11 prospect, ahead of SS "Diamond" Ian Desmond (#14), 2B Stephen King (#16) and SS Smiley Gonzalez (#17).

Posted by: Bob L. Head | May 6, 2008 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Steven, dude, you're only happy when it rains, eh?

Who's excited to see the Nats in Minute Maid Park again?

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 9:58 AM | Report abuse

One of the prime reasons you want to stock your minor league system with prospects is to trade them for other needs in the organization. Don't be surprised to see other prospects (especially pitchers) being traded in the next couple of years.

Posted by: Tom | May 6, 2008 9:59 AM | Report abuse

One of the prime reasons you want to stock your minor league system with prospects is to trade them for other needs in the organization.
_______________

True, but that's not what this was. This was a 1-year rental of Soriano for a team everyone knew wasn't going anywhere.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 6, 2008 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Now we know why you are leaving the Nationals beat. Too many 7 am flights to Houston.

Posted by: DC Diehard | May 6, 2008 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Tom, you seem to be missing the point. So I'll summarize:

1. Bowden should be fired because he did not put a big-name free agent on the payroll this year to get seats in seats for something entertaining while we wait for players to develop to stock a real winner.

2. Bowden should be fired because he did not trade away Chad Cordero before the trade deadline last year for hot young prospects when it was obvious to anyone that one of the most durable pitchers in baseball would mysteriously break down next year.

3. Bowden should be fired for signing Dmitri Young to a two-year contract when Nick Johnson, who was already a year behind in his rehab schedule, was clearly on the verge of returning to 2006 form.

4. Bowden should be fired for trading away one prospect and a likable, but going nowhere outfielder for a big-name free agent-to-be who put seats in seats for something entertaining while we waited for players to develop to stock a real winner and for an owner to purchase the team.

5. Bowden should be fired for not earlier putting Jon Rauch in the role of closer, since it is obvious to anyone that he is one of the most durable pitchers in baseball and we can count on him to not break down.

Did I miss anything, gang?

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Steven, if Galarraga keeps this up then everybody in baseball will have missed it. He was a fringe prospect when we sent him to the Rangers, and was regarded as an organizational arm when Detroit picked him up in February. He's now 26 and is supposed to be a AAA starter and possibly an occasional 5th starter and/or middle reliever. If he turns out to be an ace, well, that would be like Joel Hanrahan suddenly catapulting himself to the top of our rotation.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | May 6, 2008 10:14 AM | Report abuse

if o's guy is still around, whataya think about how ervin santana and aybar are doin this season? they were both offered together for one m tejada. unfortunately that deal wasnt good enough for the o's. 6-0 and a 300-batting shortstop. but the o's got a backup 200-hitting lf instead. nice work if you can get it.

Posted by: dk | May 6, 2008 10:18 AM | Report abuse

you left out termel sledge in the sori trade, 506.

and while the tigers saw something in him, it may be a stretch to say "something special." we don't know what exactly they thought of him. and the fact that they could get him for a low-A prospect means nobody else in baseball was offering texas anything more for him (if they were interested in him).

and, as i said, he's only pitched a few games. baseball is littered with guys who only pitch a few good games. what happens once he gets rocked a couple of times? let's not get carried away and pretend he's the second coming of santana until he actual is the second coming.

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 10:23 AM | Report abuse

OK, I really am working, so I'll come back to this later, but you're wrong on at least 4-1/2 of the 5 (I like the Soriano deal, and another one wouldn't have hurt attendance, but it's not a hanging offense). Details at 11.

************
Tom, you seem to be missing the point. So I'll summarize:

1. Bowden should be fired because he did not put a big-name free agent on the payroll this year to get seats in seats for something entertaining while we wait for players to develop to stock a real winner.

2. Bowden should be fired because he did not trade away Chad Cordero before the trade deadline last year for hot young prospects when it was obvious to anyone that one of the most durable pitchers in baseball would mysteriously break down next year.

3. Bowden should be fired for signing Dmitri Young to a two-year contract when Nick Johnson, who was already a year behind in his rehab schedule, was clearly on the verge of returning to 2006 form.

4. Bowden should be fired for trading away one prospect and a likable, but going nowhere outfielder for a big-name free agent-to-be who put seats in seats for something entertaining while we waited for players to develop to stock a real winner and for an owner to purchase the team.

5. Bowden should be fired for not earlier putting Jon Rauch in the role of closer, since it is obvious to anyone that he is one of the most durable pitchers in baseball and we can count on him to not break down.

Did I miss anything, gang?

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 10:12 AM

Posted by: CEvans | May 6, 2008 10:26 AM | Report abuse

the Os also got three pitchers (Troy Patton, Matt Albers and Dennis Sarfate) and third baseman Mike Costanzoin that trade, dk. two of those pitchers are relieving in the majors right now (albers, 2.83ERA and sarfate, 4.30ERA) and patton, considered the best player in the trade, is recovering from surgery, i think.

"3.) Troy Patten, LHP: If Troy Patten can fight off the injuries and his seemingly annual bout of arm fatigue, he will make a very good Major League pitcher. Patten brings his solid stuff and great command of his pitches (two fastballs, slider, and a change) to the Orioles as part of the Miguel Tejada trade with Houston this winter. If he can stay healthy and strong Patten looks like he could iron out to be a solid middle of the rotation type guy that is in high demand these days."

and while aybar is hitting 300, it's without much power. and his OBP is all of 7 pts higher than his batting average (which is what 2 BBs in 108 ABs will do for you, even less walks than guzman (5)).

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Is not Pat "The Bat" Burrell going to be a free agent next year? He could be the starting left fielder and home run hitter this team needs. Why keep waiting for one of Mr. Bowden's projects (Pena, Dukes, Kearns) to bloom when this guy is a proven performer?

Posted by: Doctor Joe | May 6, 2008 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Ask any Phillie fan what they think of Burrell and they'll tell you, "TAKE him, please." I don't think we want him. Too expensive for what you'd get (a "power" hitter in a little league field where its 330 in left-center power alley, who is prone to incredible season-long slumps and poor defense).

I love the progress of our minor league pitchers, have been tracking JZimm, VanAllen and Zinacola all season. Here's hoping they light it up at AA as well, and provide great fillins for possible trades of Redding and OPerez (as the WP article says).

Posted by: Sec131 | May 6, 2008 10:42 AM | Report abuse

CEvans, before you respond further to my list, check your snarkdar to make sure it's working. I'm not sure from your previous post if you took my meaning or not.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Bowden should be fired for riding that segway around and looking like an idiot.

-----

Did I miss anything, gang?

Posted by: John in Mpls | May 6, 2008 10:57 AM | Report abuse

---the Os also got three pitchers and patton, considered the best player in the trade, is recovering from surgery.
If Troy Patten can fight off the injuries and his seemingly annual bout of arm fatigue, he will make a very good Major League pitcher. and while aybar is hitting 300, it's without much power.
Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 10:29 AM

gimmie a freakin break. you guys kill me. give me a 6-0 major league pitcher over a buncha minor league prospects who may or may not make it including the gem of the trade who has to have arm surgery and may never pitch again.

and btw, talkin bout hitters, well .300 is .300. i'll take a .300 hitter with "no power" anyday over a ruthian .235 blaster stat geek.

yea whoever the o's have at shortstop now is way better than aybar--NOT!!

bottom line, the trade the o's passed up blows away the one they made. PEROID!

Posted by: dk | May 6, 2008 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Tom, you hit the nail squarely on the head there.

It has been argued that our hopes are tied too tightly to the success of the guys in the minor league system, while many - if not most - will statistically flame out.

But the thing is, I don't care if they all flame out - as long as they do so for another team. As long as they're considered prospects, they have value, even if they never crack the Nationals roster. You deal from positions of strength, and the Nats are growing stronger down on the farm.

The Plan isn't about fielding an entire team from your minor league system, after all. If you think all of the guys the Mets traded for Santana are going to be studs, you're mistaken. But that didn't stop them from landing a true ace.

Posted by: John in Mpls | May 6, 2008 11:04 AM | Report abuse

first: i didn't necessarily say that they made a better deal, i said they got more than just "a backup 200-hitting lf instead." you mentioned one guy instead of all five, which was far from accurate. and you can't judge a trade for prospects 35 games into the next season. maybe they did hose themselves, maybe they didn't.

and maybe santana has figured it out and will continue to be the guy who's 6-0 with a 2+ era. or maybe he's just on a hot streak and will turn back into the guy with a 5.76 era and a 7-14 record last year. it's still a little early to be sure of him yet.

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 11:04 AM | Report abuse

and "300 hitters" with "308 OBP" aren't necessarily all that special. flopez had about the same obp last year and people wanted to run him out of town on a rail.

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 11:05 AM | Report abuse

OK let's be clear on what we're debating here. I'm saying that Galarraga's performance is noteworthy enough to merit at least a brief notebook item looking back at the deal (beyond just the AP gamers) and acknowledging that a prospect we traded away is out-performing anyone on our staff. I'm not saying that Bowden should be fired because of this, or that it was a necessarily a bad deal (you're right, it's not clear yet), or that Galarraga has proven himself as a big leaguer yet (in fact when Willis comes back, he'll go back down most likely).

You're insisting that it isn't even worth noting because, I guess, his performance is such a total unpredictable fluke that "everyone in baseball missed it."

You're just in denial here. Galarraga all along was a power arm with big league stuff. The BP quote I pasted above has them saying when the deal went down that losing Galarraga could be "galling" for the Nats. You can look at BA or whatever, and he was always considered a prospect with big league potential. The knock against him (which none of you have mentioned, strangely) is that he has a history of injuries. TJ surgery, missed 2006 with elbow problems, etc.

Do you really think the Tigers would risk their season on the off chance that Galarraga would luck into a fluke run of effectiveness? This isn't a team like the Nats that can afford to just throw everything out there to see what sticks. They are an aging contender that has mortgaged its future to win now that started slow and is suddenly at risk of being out of it in May. Willis gets hurt, but instead of turning to Zach Miner, a perfectly decent and proven spot starter who posted a 3.02 ERA last year, or rushing Willis back, or making a move to bring in someone else, they are confidently going with Galarraga.

And this argument that keeps getting thrown out that since the Texas Rangers, the worst-run team in the AL, traded him he must not be any good, well, all I can say is that must be some mighty good Kool-Aid JimBo is feeding you guys.

Bottom line, it's AT LEAST worth a brief mention.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

I got your snark, 506. snark rating: 9.9.

You got points for speaking someone else pretty much on target, plus points for being taken seriously.

Nice work.

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Au contraire, Mr. 131. While Philadelphia wanted to run "The Bat" out of town a year ago, he, along with Utley, is easy getting the loudest and longest starting line-up ovations in town - - this coming from a colleague and Phils season ticket holder. I truly think Burrell has found himself.

I am just trying to approach this as a wannabe gm. We want to contend in a few years and we need a slugger in the outfield. Who are the available free agents? Is there anybody in our outfield or farm who could put up those kind of numbers? Sure, he plays in a small park, but I still think not. He won't be cheap, but this is the winter to spend.

Posted by: Doctor Joe | May 6, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Or the 29 year-old three-time all star with two Cy Young awards, a gold glove, and a career 3.22 ERA with over 1,400 strikeouts (over less than 1,400 innings)?

-----

or maybe he's just on a hot streak and will turn back into the guy with a 5.76 era and a 7-14 record last year

Posted by: John in Mpls | May 6, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

506--No, Bowden shouldn't be fired for any specific move. He should be fired for these reasons:

1. 14 years as a GM, one playoff appearance, no WS wins or appearances.

2. The PLAN is about drafting and developing players, esp. pitchers. Bowden's never drafted an SP better than Brett Tomko and has drafted a total of 6-7 starting-caliber position players total in 14 drafts.

3. He's chatting up the teams expectations and talking about winning now, showing that he's not on the same page with Kasten and Manny.

4. All things equal (they're not, but let's just say) it's better for any new owndership and team president to bring in their own guy.

5. His off-field antics are an embarrassment--DUI, physical altercations with the girlfriend, comparing the player's union to the 9/11 hijackers...

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Also, there's really that much hatin' for Bowden "giving away" Galarraga? Seriously?

First, Soriano was hot and expensive. It's not like Bowden wasn't giving up SOMETHING. The other GM has got Stevens, I mean bosses, to answer to too you know.

Second, We did get something back for Soriano--one of whom is in today's pitching promotion article (Jordan 2Ns).

I'm just sayin'

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 11:16 AM | Report abuse

What in the world does "I'm just sayin'" mean? What rhetorical purpose does it possibly serve? Methinks people should stop using such trite phrases on this blog.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 6, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

You mean trite like saying "methinks?"

Posted by: John in Mpls | May 6, 2008 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Uh, yeah dude, it was a joke.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 6, 2008 11:35 AM | Report abuse

"Uh, yeah dude, it was a joke."

Compounded by the hilarity of not signing your post. Dude, don't quit your night job.

Posted by: joebleux | May 6, 2008 11:37 AM | Report abuse

JiM, we're talking about *ERVIN* santana (of the 4.58 career ERA, 500 IP, and 400 Ks), not *JOHAN* santana. ;)

SoCH, as I've mentioned before, he *has* gotten brief mention in the post. it wasn't an article, it was on the AL page that runs every day in the paper. i don't remember if they mentioned he'd been traded by the nats, but the post has run a paragraph or two on him.

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'!

Posted by: Atlanta | May 6, 2008 11:39 AM | Report abuse

John might have missed the "methinks" and "without further ado" day because he was traveling to Washington. John, NatsNut said those two phrases drive her nuts, so we said them as much as possible in a 24-hour period. She got exactly what she deserved.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Joebleux methinks you should lighten up, dude. I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 6, 2008 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Pat the Bat? Oh, please! They don't call him Pat the glove, do they?

Steven, please look up Daryl Thompson. He will really get you in a lather about JimBow!

Please take Baseball Prospectus in context. They pretty much thought Wilkerson was the better player at the time. Christine Kahrl admitted as much at a book signing I went to last year at Politics and Prose. Their point was not that Gallaraga was the second coming of Cy Young but rather that not only did Texas get the better player in the deal, they got ANOTHER player, too.

Posted by: Ira | May 6, 2008 11:44 AM | Report abuse

A quick poll: how many words do you think Gallarga is worth?

I say: 50. He's about 5,000% overpriced right now.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Burrell outside of Citizen's Bank Park = Kearns outside of the Great American Ballpark.

Posted by: lowcountry | May 6, 2008 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Addendum to my list:

6. Jim Bowden should be fired for failing to trade retreads that don't work out, unpopular and overpaid big leaguers, and washout prospects for top-dollar, proven, major league talent and proven prospects.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

506 - I think you should add to the list that he seems to have failed to make the necessary arrangements for the Guzman for Reyes trade that you successfully completed two weeks ago.

Posted by: lowcountry | May 6, 2008 11:51 AM | Report abuse

not that i'm lobbying for burrell, and yes you might think his stats are inflated at home, but these is his home and away lines...

. . . . . . AVG OBP SLG OPS
AWAY: .360 .484 .780 1.264
HOME: .279 .408 .557 .965

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Good grief, a swing and a miss!

I had posted about the Johan trade just before you posted that, so I was clearly in that state of mind.

While I have heard people dog Santana for his off season last year, the 5.76 ERA and 7-14 record should have tipped me off (Johan was 15-13 with a 3.33 ERA in 2007).

Methinks it's not the only thing I missed today, though.

-----

JiM, we're talking about *ERVIN* santana (of the 4.58 career ERA, 500 IP, and 400 Ks), not *JOHAN* santana. ;)

Posted by: John in Mpls | May 6, 2008 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Can we please call up Collin Balester to replace Matt Chico?

Posted by: ummm | May 6, 2008 12:01 PM | Report abuse

For all the sayin' going on in here today I'm astounded nobody has mentioned leather pants yet.

Posted by: i hate walks | May 6, 2008 12:01 PM | Report abuse

You're all mean, mean, mean. And I take back all my compliments on how funny you are.

(caffeine's worn off)

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Gosh, I hate to give up on Matt Chico. I think that he didn't get the benefit of minor league time in the organization (although I'm saying that with zero knowledge of how much time he spent in the D'back organization). I think he did some emergency fill in for us well before he was ready. He has pitched well enough to win, but has had some tough things happen to him such as NO OFFENSE.

Posted by: 6th and D | May 6, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

231, your 2008 sample size is too small. Pat the Bat in 2007:

Home: .295/.430/.586
Away: .220/.370/.424

Having said that, I don't think he would be a horrible signing at 3 years, $45 million. But he would be a horrible signing at 5/$75 which is what someone will give him, if not more.

Posted by: Bob L. Head | May 6, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Regular readers of Nationals Journal might want to check this out...

http://tinyurl.com/5c9cax

Posted by: Wigi | May 6, 2008 12:29 PM | Report abuse

SoCH, as I've mentioned before, he *has* gotten brief mention in the post. it wasn't an article, it was on the AL page that runs every day in the paper. i don't remember if they mentioned he'd been traded by the nats, but the post has run a paragraph or two on him.
_________________

Yes, I know, and that's not the kind of mention I'm talking about. I'm talking about something in the Nats coverage.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Second, We did get something back for Soriano--one of whom is in today's pitching promotion article (Jordan 2Ns).
Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 11:16 AM

i wish people would stop sayin we got somethin back for soriano. we lost soriano for nuthin. for losing him for nuthin we were given by mlb per the rules a couple of draft picks as a consolation. again jim b got nuthin back for soriano. and you can write all you want about these prospects "down on the farm", until i see one in person in the bigs, well, later for that.

Posted by: dk | May 6, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

also lets not forget jim b committed probably the most heinous crime when he traded a starting pitcher for a utility if named spivey, who btw wasnt around the next season. and i dont care if that starting pitcher did turn his back on ole frankie on the mound. he was a solid starter and you never give away pitching for utility players. neva.

Posted by: dk | May 6, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

I agree with 6th and D. Last I heard, St. Randy was still behind Matt Chico & I think said he righted himself last year in similar circumstances. I am for giving him another chance.
On a vital topic, has anyone recently found the knishes at the stadium? I didn't look this past weekend, but on an earlier occasion I circumnavigated the stadium to cover all the spots where the kosher stand supposedly wd be. I eventually found an empty, forlorn kosher stand apparently abandoned in a stadium backwater. Perhaps it will be revived?

Posted by: Section 109 | May 6, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

it seems our whole organization is ex reds--boone sr, jim b, half the players, broadcaster knight. man its endless. and that would be ok if the reds had been a good team. but these guys put together one of the worst teams in bball. the reds have sucked for years and these guys were runnin the shoe.

Posted by: dk | May 6, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

fair enough, bobL. especially since i tend to harp on sample sizes. ;)

if you look at his three year splits (slightly closer):

home: .284/.414/.545/.959
away: .249/.370/.462/.832

it's a pretty big difference, but 832 OPS is better than any OF full season (not counting a month of WMP last year) not named Soriano.

like i said, not trying to build a case for the guy (altho i wonder what his splits were after he started hitting last year in the 2nd half). i'd have to see dollars and years needed and what the other options might be before saying one way or the other. just have to keep in mind that he turns 32 this year.

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

109, what day of the week was it that you found the kosher stand apparently abandoned? I believe the kosher stand is closed for friday evening games, and maybe saturday evening games as well since they don't start late enough.

Posted by: Coverage is lacking | May 6, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

That's correct, the kosher stand is closed for Friday games and Saturday games because of Shabbat. And it was closed all during Passover as well. But it was open last week.

Posted by: Eric | May 6, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

"I believe the kosher stand is closed for friday evening games, and maybe saturday evening games as well since they don't start late enough."

That makes sense. But can anyone tell me why all the Mayorga Coffee stands were closed at 12:30 last Saturday, a half hour prior to game time? SOME OF US FANS NEED OUR CAFFEINE, OR WE'RE GONNA START TYPING IN ALL CAPS, OKAY? I don't know if the stand on the lower concourse ever did open up that day, because I sit way up off the upper concourse and didn't want to truck all the way back downstairs in the middle of the game to check. But the Mayorga stand on the upper concourse never did open up that day. Indeed, I've been to eight games so far this year and haven't seen it open yet.

I guess the moral of the story is don't come to Nationals Park on a beautiful Saturday afternoon looking to have a cup of coffee and a knish while you're watching the game. Despite what Stan Kasten and Centerplate tell you.

Posted by: Ray King's Gut Feeling | May 6, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

I've found one Kosher stand just underneath the escaltors going up to the 200 level (near the kids playground) and another in the 300/400 level close to being right behind home plate. The one time I got the knish, it was pretty darned good. And I believe they have hot dogs with sauerkraut (my wife's favorite), which we haven't found at any other concession stands.

Posted by: e | May 6, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Thank you Cil, why didn't I think of that? I think it was a Saturday afternoon. Now I know when to look.

Posted by: Section 109 | May 6, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

I'm pretty certain that 93% of the people who actually care about this have now, in fact, read all about it on this-here Washington Post blog.

--------

SoCH, as I've mentioned before, he *has* gotten brief mention in the post. it wasn't an article, it was on the AL page that runs every day in the paper. i don't remember if they mentioned he'd been traded by the nats, but the post has run a paragraph or two on him.
_________________

Yes, I know, and that's not the kind of mention I'm talking about. I'm talking about something in the Nats coverage.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 12:31 PM

Posted by: Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

231, I think we've ended up at the same spot. It seems like all of the free agents are 32 these days. Which is exactly why you don't sign and overpay them until they're the last 2-3 pieces of a contender. We need more Zimmermans. Speaking of which, Dr. RosenRosen says the Indians need an upgrade over 22-year old Asdrubal Cabrera. Flippie for Cabrera and a pitching prospect, anyone?

Posted by: Bob L. Head | May 6, 2008 12:59 PM | Report abuse

also lets not forget jim b committed probably the most heinous crime when he traded a starting pitcher for a utility if named spivey, who btw wasnt around the next season. and i dont care if that starting pitcher did turn his back on ole frankie on the mound. he was a solid starter and you never give away pitching for utility players. neva.

Posted by: dk | May 6, 2008 12:34 PM

------

This reminds me of rule...

7. Jim Bowden should be fired, because as General Manager he is solely responsible for the long-term strategy of the baseball club and made poor decisions, despite the desperate pleas for reason from the President picked as figure-heads by the Reds and Major League Baseball.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

No problem 109. It's too bad they don't also sell the knishes somewhere else that is open every day, although the ones sold at another spot may not be kosher as a result.

With regard to this kind of thing, has anyone here been checking out the Grounds Crew blog? What do you think of it? Even if people are checking it out, I like that regular NJ posters are also talking about and continuing to post on ballpark issues/questions here too.

Posted by: Coverage is lacking | May 6, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Um, maybe this is a dumb question but is a kosher knish *not allowed* to be served on the Shabbat?

What about the rest of us?

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Tying together Barry and Boz's columns today as well as my own view of Kasten/Bowden's view of FA/Trades...

If Cleveland continues to struggle and they fail to sign Sabathia to an extension, what do we have the might lure the Tribe into trading CC to the Nats?

I was thinking some combination of Redding/Perez/Balester AND Marrero/Maxwell AND Detwiler/Zimmermann.

This would also assume we have 48 hour window to sign Sabathia to an extension, guessing 6-8 years at 20-25 mil a year. What did Santana get from the Mets?

Posted by: estuartj | May 6, 2008 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Um, maybe this is a dumb question but is a kosher knish *not allowed* to be served on the Shabbat?

What about the rest of us?

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 1:19 PM


------

Can we rub a half-smoke on it and then eat it?

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 1:29 PM | Report abuse

The knish can be served. It just can't be cooked (unless you start before the Shabbat, in which case it will be much more like Tcholent) on the Sabbath and the vendors can't sell (also, if they are observant, they couldn't get to the park except by walking).

Posted by: Catcher50 | May 6, 2008 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Do we think C.C. Sabathia is really worth $20 million a year for 6-8 years? Sounds like a bad idea to me.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/s/sabatc.01.shtml

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Instead of making up arguments that no one's making, how about if the Jim Bowden fan club actually try to make the case FOR him.

You tell me, why DOES he deserve to be a GM in MLB? Not excuses, like Marge Schott's fault (even though she won a WS before Bowden came to Cincy) or the payroll (even though Bowden actually had one of the highest payrolls in the league the one year he made the playoffs.

Make the pro-Bowden case. What's he done that's so good that he deserves this job?

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Bowden also left Rasner unprotected, traded Jerry Owens for Alex Escobar, and continually signs washed up OFs to stock the minors. Where does a late-20 y.o. injury prone outfielder fit into THE PLAN? George Lombard. Alex Escobar.

In his defense, everyone was slamming him for the Soriano trade when it was made. Pretty much every sportscaster said that Wilkerson would hit more HRs in Texas than Soriano would at RFK. And instead, Wilkerson dropped off the face of the earth. On the contrary, the Cincy trade was generally regarded as a coup.

Bowden reminds of THAT fantasy baseball manager who offers a ton of ridiculous trades, and any that are accepted seem lopsided. He consequently is also the guy who looks for bargain basement pricing and doesn't tend to manage the roster well, thus gets burned with moves like losing Rasner.

Posted by: * | May 6, 2008 1:35 PM | Report abuse

LOL at the hand-wringing over Armando f'n Galarraga. The two pitchers we ended up with as a result of losing Soriano are both younger and have higher celings than AG.

I know, let's never trade anybody ever again! That way we won't miss out on these late blooming gems that take MLB by storm!

Posted by: Hector Camacho | May 6, 2008 1:35 PM | Report abuse

From Fox Sports MLB Power rankings. Nats moved up 5 spots. the commentary:

"The Nats surely took advantage of the hapless Pirates to pull their way out of our cellar. Before that, they took two from the Braves. This may be the best Washington plays all season, so enjoy it."
----
"...and whatever you do, don't call me Francis."

Posted by: N@sfan | May 6, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

So...after two days of debate, SoCH, you come to the point that your major gripe on the Galarraga thing was not that it was NOT mentioned in the Post, but rather that it wasn't mentioned in the place and quantity that YOU thought it should be? Goodness - no wonder nothing gets done on Capitol Hill.

Posted by: Ryan Dylan | May 6, 2008 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Boswell is exactly right. The Lerners talked big 2 years ago but the team salary is LOWER now -- in a new, publicly funded park -- than it was when MLB was running the team. The payroll is nearly the lowest in baseball. People on this board for some reason want to defend the Lerners for this, posing the question: what free agents should have been signed. That is absurd. That logic assumes that no free agents over the past two years would have helped this team win games. Starting with letting Soriano go, the Lerners made this into a AAAA franchise. There is zero excuse for this, and we can only hope they use some of their windfall to pay at least an average amount next year. I assume they will, but it will be too little too late. MLB made the wrong choice in awarding this franchise to the Lerners.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 6, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Soriano didn't get us out of the cellar either.

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Why trade for Sabathia? Let him (if he doesn't sign an extension during the season) hit the market and see what happens, no sense in giving up a package of decent players or prospects for him. I'm tending to think that he will re-sign with Cleveland anyway.

If the money is equal, why would Sabathia choose DC over NY or Boston?

Posted by: joNAThan | May 6, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

On a vital topic, has anyone recently found the knishes at the stadium? I didn't look this past weekend, but on an earlier occasion I circumnavigated the stadium to cover all the spots where the kosher stand supposedly wd be. I eventually found an empty, forlorn kosher stand apparently abandoned in a stadium backwater. Perhaps it will be revived?

Posted by: Section 109 | May 6, 2008 12:35 PM

*******************************************

(Of course it would be me answering this question)

The knishes can be found at the *two* Kosher stands behind Section 142 (or thereabouts) and Section 308 (had started right near by section but moved to its right place recently :(. Still close by). The stand is closed on Friday nights, all Saturday games and during Jewish holidays. There are two fast days that are coming up but I'm not sure if the Nats will be in town on those days. I'll check and post back here.

Posted by: LurkerNowPoster | May 6, 2008 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Pitching is great but is there any O in the farm system, maybe 30 hr's?

Posted by: Dave from Germantown | May 6, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

It's not a dumb question, there are several issues wrapped up in your question. They can be served on Shabbat, to anyone. However, if the people working the stand observe the Sabbath as well (though there is not necessarily overlap between people who are kosher and people who are Sabbath observers, it is likely in this case that they are), they can't work and they can't cook them. They could be cooked by someone who is not observant of the Sabbath and still be kosher as long as it is prepared properly.
* * * *
Um, maybe this is a dumb question but is a kosher knish *not allowed* to be served on the Shabbat?

What about the rest of us?

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 1:19 PM

Posted by: Coverage is lacking | May 6, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

btw dont want to hijack this jim b lovelfest but did any1 see the si.com article on tyree evans signing at md. since we dont have a terps blog, just thought id throw it out here see what folks think. si really scooped the post. they didnt write anything about this. its a pretty wild story. guy looks like big trouble with a capital t. very interesting.

Posted by: dk | May 6, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

The Yankees rotation is so thin, you'd have to think he's almost an automatic for New Yorks' rotation next season.

A guy I like in the FA market is Mark Teixera. Power hitting 1b to buy once dimitri and NJ's contracts are up. Local guy (born Annapolis, HS in severna park and played in the NoVa Clark Griffith league). 28 now, could be a rock at First for years. 1yr $12.5M this year, FA in offseason.

man, its early to be talking about offseason moves.

Posted by: Sec131 | May 6, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

You know, I've been firmly with the ilk who are okay with no FAs this year. But I have to admit, my heart skipped a beat when I read those 4 names in Boswell's column today.

If/when they actually DO sign some big names (any big names), it's going to be very, very exciting.

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Steven, trying to ask us to prove a GM is successfully rebuilding a franchise that had been purposefully whittled away to nothing so that it could be contracted (please, all you haters, don't forget that -- the original Plan was to do away with the Expos and GMs were asked to behave accordingly BEFORE JimBo) is like asking us to tell you how full a bathtub is with our eyes closed and our hands tied.

We can listen to the sound of the gurgles from Nationals Farm Authority and guess, but really we won't know until it starts spilling over onto the floor.

Jim Bowden has proven that he can acquire decent players looking for a second chance. He's even proven that a some of them can stick (Redding). It looks like he's proven he can acquire draft picks that are successful.* With Soriano, he proved that with the budget he can even pick up free agents that are worthwhile.

What has not been proven:
- Can he do all three things at once, a requirement for any successful team
- Will he know the right time for each


*(N.B. no man is an island, he, of course, has made the right decisions about who to trust in all his decisions, Rizzo lovers, but we all understand that Rizzo does not get the final say)

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Wow, this is a wealth of information about knishes. Thanks everybody.

Posted by: Section 109 | May 6, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Considering today's articles about the minors and prospects, I encourage everybody to go to http://www.farmauthority.dcsportsnet.com/. Brian has a real good overview of each minor league team and their respective performance in April.

Posted by: Nats fan in NJ | May 6, 2008 1:59 PM | Report abuse

speaking of the yankees rotation, jonathan albaladejo who we traded to ny, has pitched 10 innings in 5 games and is 0-1 with a 5.23 era having given up 6 runs, walked 3 and k'd 11.

Posted by: dk | May 6, 2008 2:01 PM | Report abuse

"Pitching is great but is there any O in the farm system, maybe 30 hr's?"

not to dis your comment, but if you have a choice of either decent to good pitching in the minors or 30 HR guys, you take the pitching every time. it's a lot easier to trade pitching prospects for hitters than hitters for pitchers. good pitching is more scarce than good hitting.

so... my point is it's best to stock your system with as much good pitching as possible, since you can always use good pitching prospects to trade for hitting.

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

What is a knish anyway?

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

What, they couldn't hire a few shabbas-goyim?
*********
It's not a dumb question, there are several issues wrapped up in your question. They can be served on Shabbat, to anyone. However, if the people working the stand observe the Sabbath as well (though there is not necessarily overlap between people who are kosher and people who are Sabbath observers, it is likely in this case that they are), they can't work and they can't cook them. They could be cooked by someone who is not observant of the Sabbath and still be kosher as long as it is prepared properly.
* * * *
Um, maybe this is a dumb question but is a kosher knish *not allowed* to be served on the Shabbat?
What about the rest of us?
Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 1:19 PM

Posted by: Coverage is lacking | May 6, 2008 1:50 PM

Posted by: MIB knishes for my precedent | May 6, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

"also, if they are observant, they couldn't get to the park except by walking)."

What about wheelchairs? Can they roll on Shabbat?

Posted by: joebleux | May 6, 2008 2:07 PM | Report abuse

What about wheelchairs? Can they roll on Shabbat?

Posted by: joebleux | May 6, 2008 2:07 PM

Keep *your* night job, jackass.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 6, 2008 2:12 PM | Report abuse

ummmmm ... I knew that! It's so funny you think I didn't know that!

***************
CEvans, before you respond further to my list, check your snarkdar to make sure it's working. I'm not sure from your previous post if you took my meaning or not.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 10:53 AM

Posted by: MIB PBs | May 6, 2008 2:12 PM | Report abuse

506--No one's been more vocal about how the Nats franchise was targeted for destruction by MLB, but the guy had a track record before he came here.

14 drafts, 14 years as a GM in baseball. To conclude that he's a good drafter, you have to disregard all his time in Cincy and project the best possible outcome for all the hyped prospects in our system now. Rizzo gets more credit because of his very very impressive track record of success in AZ contrasted with Bowden's even longer record of failure.

In my case against Bowden, I've given him credit for his ability to scavenge for scrap heap finds. But some of that I think is hype and perception--if you have no decent starting pitchers at all and invite 30 Redding types to camp, and one works out while you still have one of the worst staffs in baseball, is that really praise-worthy? But even if you give him the most generous credit for his flair for free talent, the PLAN is supposed to be about drafting, and his track record drafting really is terrible.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

131 - I 2nd the Teixera suggestion provided of course that they've moved either/both NJ/DY. The LAST thing they need is another ML roster spot taken by someone who can't play anywhere other than 1B.

Posted by: MKevin | May 6, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

I told those f**** down at the league office a thousand times that I don't roll on Shabbos!

Posted by: Walter Sobchak | May 6, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Jane, you ignorant ....

Bowden should be retained for the following reasons:

1) Developing a farm system that went from 30th to 9th in 3 seasons;

2) Dumping Wilkerson before his body shriveled up, and Termel Sledge while he was still a semi-prospect for what became two top prospects;

3) For not trading Soriano for Kevin Slowey and a bag of beans;

4) For trading Bill Bray and Gary Majewski at their pinacle of value for best avalable value;

5) For dumping Vidro and $6 Million dollars and parlaying that into WMP (whom the Red Sox gave up Arroyo for) in the same year;

6) For hiring Manny Acta and retaining Randy St. Claire;

7) For hiring Dmitri Young and Belliard when nobody else would;

8) For acquiring Milledge while subtracting Ryan Church;

9) For hiring, retaining, and working with a first class scouting organization;

10) For developing decent teams while working for some of the cheapest (Schott, MLB) owners ever and for developing a good team under the Lerners.

Posted by: NatBisquit | May 6, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

i'm not going to defend bowden, i don't think he's a great GM. i also don't think he's the worst GM (at a minimum, brian sabean is below him and every other GM in the past 20 years).

i'm still holding out hope for georgie's son to be disenchanted with cashman and for him to come home to DC next year. probably a fruitless dream, but a man can hope.

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Steven, if you invite 30 of ANY kind of baseball player to camp and one of them works out, it's a success. It's baseball, not NBA. You can't take the hot performers of college and yank 'em out early and have them tear up the joint. The greatest basketball player of all time, who was a phenomenal all-around athlete, didn't have the stuff to make it past high-A in baseball, because it's so difficult. You know what the difference between hitting .250 and hitting .300 is? It's 25 hits. 25 hits in 500...

Okay, maybe I'm getting a little too excited, eh?

I do refer you to Rule 7. The GM is responsible for all aspects of the team, while the President does nothing at all. No way that the GM gets orders on strategy from the President and owners that pay his salary and employ him.

Seriously, I agree his past at Cinci and his pre-Lerners Washington past are highly suspect. But his work since 2006 has seemed to hold all of his flashes of insight from the previous 14 years and - so far - none of the bonehead. Doesn't that intrigue you at all?

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

What SOCH really wants is someone at the Post to write about something that he suggests and then attribute it to him, so he can change his name to SOCH Who Knows More About Baseball Than Washington Post Writers.

Posted by: nattybo | May 6, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Note to self:

-read *all* the entries before posting (in this case, I forgot to "refresh")

-proof posting before hitting submit (noticed a few glaring things in my last posting)

Most folks addressed the Shabbat/cooking issues quite well. Really, it comes down to the cooking and getting to the stadium. My husband and I walked to the stadium for the exhibition game against the O's from Georgetown and it was *long*. But, it was permitted due to fancy laws in Judaism and making a public domain a private domain.

The idea of a Shabbos goy at one of the stands is actually an interesting one. The whole problem would be a non-Jew cooking for a Jew on the Sabbath. But, if you figure that most folks there are *not* Jewish, and therefore the cooking is being done for them (as opposed to the Jews), then the Jews could benefit. The main question, and what is really the issue of a Kosher stand, is the supervision (verifying that it is Kosher).

Posted by: LurkerNowPoster | May 6, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

If we can't get a ball game in here, can we at least get a new post?

Posted by: me again | May 6, 2008 2:32 PM | Report abuse

"Um, maybe this is a dumb question but is a kosher knish *not allowed* to be served on the Shabbat?"

The whole kosher/observant can do/can't do on the Sabbath dynamic is interesting and frankly rather amusing to those of us who aren't part of it. Years ago I attended an Irish music event that was held at one of the large Borscht Belt hotels in the Catskills. One of the big selling points that the organizers made in promoting the event was the marvelous kosher food that would be on offer all weekend. Needless to say, very few of us Irish music types are Jewish, observant or not, but it sounded good to us. So on the Saturday morning I go bounding down to the dining room, sit down at a table, a waitress comes up and hands me a two-page menu full of breakfast delicacies. My mouth watering, I start working my way down the list ordering stuff. "Sorry, we don't have that today. It's the Sabbath." "No, sorry, that's not available either. It's the Sabbath." Over and over again, the same thing happens until I've pretty much exhausted everything on the menu. So, exasperated, I say "What DO you have?" and the answer is basically "Well, we can bring you a cold bagel. But you'll have to cut it and spread the cream cheese yourself."

This was my first exposure to the whole observant Jew thing, and boy was I confused. But I wasn't alone in my confusion. There was a friend of mine sitting at the table who happened to be Jewish herself, although not observant, and when I asked her to please explain what was going on, even she couldn't figure it out.

So I guess we know now, as best we ever can, why you can't find a knish all the time at Nationals Park. But what's the deal with all those items on the menu board at Taste of the Majors that aren't ever there?

And finally an errant thought. Do you think that the Lerners and Stan Kasten, being Jewish as they are, might veto a proposed signing of C.C. Sabathia because they don't want a pitcher who won't pitch on Friday nights and Saturdays?

Posted by: Ray King's Gut Feeling | May 6, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Which is not really a problem for goyim anyway, and they're the ones buying the knishes.
**********
But, if you figure that most folks there are *not* Jewish, and therefore the cooking is being done for them (as opposed to the Jews), then the Jews could benefit. The main question, and what is really the issue of a Kosher stand, is the supervision (verifying that it is Kosher).

Posted by: LurkerNowPoster | May 6, 2008 2:31 PM

Posted by: Walter | May 6, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Update to the dates that the Kosher stand will not be open. In additional to all Friday night and Saturday games, the stand will also be closed on June 9th.

Posted by: LurkerNowPoster | May 6, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

quite a string going on here...

i love jim bowden, he is exciting and involved. he makes mistakes and gambles more than he should...but thats how i like it, this is baseball. (did someone really complain about trading away toma ohka...wow)

i dont care about kosher food (sorry hebrews and shebrews) or galaraga dude i've never heard of before

easy on the free agent chatter, look across the majors and you can find max 4 or 5 guys actually worth their bloated contract.

kasten, bowden, boone, and manny are too experienced to fail horribly. progress has been measurable to say the least and im more excited to be a nats fan now than i have been since 2005

Posted by: love | May 6, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

i think two of the keys to successful long-term contention are signing one or two of those long-term FA guys that are at least close to being worth their contracts and having the financial wherewithal to eat the contract of a mistaken signing (or figure out how to sell a matt morris or mike hampton and get out from underneath it).

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

"Steven on Capitol Hill" sounds uptight, stuffy. I suggest loosening up a bit and going with "Steve on Capitol Hill."

Posted by: Suicide Squeeze | May 6, 2008 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Do yourselves a favor and educate...yourselves...

Give some credit to early architects of D-backs, Rays
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3383864

Posted by: * | May 6, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

By the way, for anyone interested in baseball in the DR

http://www.slate.com/id/2190554/entry/2190555/

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Jane, you ignorant ....

Bowden should be retained for the following reasons:

1) Developing a farm system that went from 30th to 9th in 3 seasons;

2) Dumping Wilkerson before his body shriveled up, and Termel Sledge while he was still a semi-prospect for what became two top prospects;

3) For not trading Soriano for Kevin Slowey and a bag of beans;

4) For trading Bill Bray and Gary Majewski at their pinacle of value for best avalable value;

5) For dumping Vidro and $6 Million dollars and parlaying that into WMP (whom the Red Sox gave up Arroyo for) in the same year;

6) For hiring Manny Acta and retaining Randy St. Claire;

7) For hiring Dmitri Young and Belliard when nobody else would;

8) For acquiring Milledge while subtracting Ryan Church;

9) For hiring, retaining, and working with a first class scouting organization;

10) For developing decent teams while working for some of the cheapest (Schott, MLB) owners ever and for developing a good team under the Lerners.

Posted by: NatBisquit | May 6, 2008 2:22 PM

___________________________________________


NatBisquit,

I couldn't agree more. Every GM makes some bad moves, and Jimbo has made his share but, give credit where credit is due.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 6, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

The last post was me.

Posted by: Section 505/203 | May 6, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

...sputtering to a halt...

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

love,

what are you talking about? Tomo Okha is up there on the list of greatest nats picters with greats such as Levale Speigner, Zach Day, and Sunny Kim.

Posted by: natsinthevalley | May 6, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Too busy read this article.
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3383864

Posted by: * | May 6, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

This statement is necessarily wrong. It is inconsistent with basic principles of market economics.
_________________________________

easy on the free agent chatter, look across the majors and you can find max 4 or 5 guys actually worth their bloated contract.

Posted by: love | May 6, 2008 2:50 PM

Posted by: Lerners ARE Cheap | May 6, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

You, who can't be bothered to follow the rules, said:

"People on this board for some reason want to defend the Lerners for this ... logic [which] assumes that no free agents over the past two years would have helped this team win games..."

It seems you're confusing defending the plan with defending the Lerners or the people they're paying to execute said plan. And the plan's logic, to me, doesn't give a half-smoke about winning three more games in 2007 or 2008 because of one or two over-paid free agent players. The plan is to work up to winning a World Series [sic] and to becoming a dominant team for the next decade or more.

Your argument exposes you as a fair-weather fan who only wants to see winning games. One who can't celebrate the details of a beautiful sport in which the best team might not win on a given day, so we play 162 to be sure. I want to see winning games, certainly, but I want to see a superior team every time I go to the park and I'm willing to have a few seasons of patience to see that happen. If you want to only go to winning games, make sure you get tickets for Nats vs. Marlins or Pirates or Rays and bring money for build-a-bear just in case.

Posted by: i hate walks | May 6, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

The solution, of course, is to offer them at other stands.

******************************************
Which is not really a problem for goyim anyway, and they're the ones buying the knishes.
**********
But, if you figure that most folks there are *not* Jewish, and therefore the cooking is being done for them (as opposed to the Jews), then the Jews could benefit. The main question, and what is really the issue of a Kosher stand, is the supervision (verifying that it is Kosher).

Posted by: LurkerNowPoster | May 6, 2008 2:31 PM

Posted by: Walter | May 6, 2008 2:36 PM

Posted by: LurkerNowPoster | May 6, 2008 4:11 PM | Report abuse

WHIP (Walks and Hits Allowed per Innings Pitched)

Sandy Koufax:
1961 1.205
1962 1.036
1963 0.875
1964 0.928
1965 0.855
1966 0.985
Career 1.106 (1955-1966)

C.C. Sabathia:
2001 1.353
2002 1.362
2003 1.295
2004 1.319
2005 1.256
2006 1.173
2007 1.141
2008 1.774
Career 1.281

Posted by: flynnie | May 6, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

I think the real question, flynnie, would be which pitcher makes better knishes.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

it's really difficult to compare stats in eras 40 years apart. you have to compare koufax vs his peers and CC vs his peers and see which one was that much better than his peers. that's closer than comparing players from disparate eras, tho still not definitive. that's how we end up with "OPS+" and "ERA+". those define how much better a player is than other players at their positions for those statistics in the same timeframe.

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Wow. excellent post, ihw.

Posted by: NatsNut | May 6, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

You make some good points, and this is probably as strong a case as you could make for him. I'll comment on in CAPS, just for read-ability, not to convey emphasis.

Bowden should be retained for the following reasons:

1) Developing a farm system that went from 30th to 9th in 3 seasons;

FAIR ENOUGH. THE PEOPLE AT BA KNOW THEIR STUFF, AND BOWDEN HAS TO GET SOME CREDIT FOR THIS. HOWEVER, MY INCLINATION IS TO SAY THAT YOU HAVE TO WAIT AT LEAST 3-4 YEARS BEFORE YOU CAN JUDGE A DRAFT, SO I THINK CONCLUSIONS ABOUT ALL HIS DRAFTS IN DC ARE TENTATIVE AT BEST, WHICH CONCLUSIONS ABOUT HIS BAD DRAFTING IN CINCY CAN BE MADE MORE FIRMLY. I'M ALSO INCLINED TO GIVE CREDIT TO RIZZO BECAUSE OF HIS SUCCESS IN AZ AND JIMBO'S FAILURE IN CINCY, BUT THEN I DON'T BLAME THE SCOUTING DIRECTOR IN CINCY FOR THE BAD DRAFTS THERE IN THE 90S, SO I ACKNOWLEDGE THAT'S NOT TOTALLY FAIR. I GIVE BOWDEN 1/2 OF A CHECK-PLUS FOR THIS.

2) Dumping Wilkerson before his body shriveled up, and Termel Sledge while he was still a semi-prospect for what became two top prospects;

OK SO THIS IS THE SORIANO DEAL YOU'RE SUMMARIZING, WITH A GOOD AMOUNT OF SPIN. I'VE ALWAYS TENDED TO GIVE BOWDEN A LOT OF CREDIT FOR THIS ONE, JUST BECAUSE WE REALLY NEEDED SOMETHING THERE AND SORIANO FOR 1 YEAR WAS A THRILL. HOWEVER GIVING UP ANY PROSPECT FOR A 1-YEAR RENTAL IS USUALLY A NEGATIVE FOR THE LONG-HAUL. I ALSO THINK YOU'RE TOO QUICK TO ASSIGN "TOP PROSPECT" STATUS TO ZIMMERMANN AND SMOKER. NEITHER OF THESE GUYS IS IN BA'S TOP 100 PROSPECTS OR ANYTHING. GOOD PROSPECTS PROBABLY BUT TOP? AND YOU'RE COMPLETELY OMITTING OUR FRIEND MR. GALARRAGA. I THINK RIGHT NOW I AGREE, THIS IS A CHECK-PLUS FOR BOWDEN, BUT YOU HAVE TO RESERVE JUDGMENT TO SEE HOW GALARRAGA, SMOKER, AND ZIMMERMANN PAN OUT. SO GIVE HIM 3/4 OF A CHECK PLUS FOR THIS DEAL OVERALL.

3) For not trading Soriano for Kevin Slowey and a bag of beans;

ANYTHING ABOUT THE TRADES HE DID OR DIDN'T ACCEPT WITH SORIANO IS PURE GUESSWORK. NEITHER OF US IS IN A POSITION TO JUDGE. NO CHECK PLUS.

4) For trading Bill Bray and Gary Majewski at their pinacle of value for best avalable value;

THIS IS THE DEAL EVERYONE SAYS IS BOWDEN AT HIS BEST. I DON'T QUITE GO AS CRAZY AS MOST PEOPLE FOR THIS BECAUSE A) BRAY HAS BEEN HURT, BUT HE COULD STILL CERTAINLY TURN OUT TO BE A GOOD MAJOR LEAGUE RELIEVER, B) KEARNS AND FLIP/FLOP HAVE BEEN REPLACEMENT-LEVEL PLAYERS HERE SO I HAVE A HARD TIME BEING TOO EXCITED ABOUT WHAT WE GOT, AND C) KRIVSKY AT LEAST FEELS HE WAS LIED TO, AND WE HAVE NO IDEA HOW THAT'S AFFECTED OTHER TEAMS' WILLINGNESS TO DEAL WITH US, BUT IF I WAS A MAJOR LEAGUE GM I'D BE GUNSHY ABOUT ANY TRADES WITH BOWDEN. BUT SINCE I'M THE ONLY ONE WHO DOESN'T LOVE THIS TRADE, GIVE HIM A FULL CHECK-PLUS.

5) For dumping Vidro and $6 Million dollars and parlaying that into WMP (whom the Red Sox gave up Arroyo for) in the same year;

CALL IT A WASH. ONE BUM FOR ANOTHER. NO CHECK PLUS.

6) For hiring Manny Acta and retaining Randy St. Claire;

ISN'T MANNY A KASTEN HIRE AND ST. CLAIRE A MANNY HIRE? I GUESS HE WAS PROBABLY IN THE ROOM AT THE TIME. SO GIVE HIM HALF A CHECK.

7) For hiring Dmitri Young and Belliard when nobody else would;

HMMM... REPLACEMENT LEVEL BACK-UP 2B AND FAT GUY WHO'S SO FAT HE'S FATTER THAN FAT. YOU GIVE JIMBO CREDIT FOR SQUEEZING ONE MORE GOOD YEAR OUT OF DY'S FAT BUTT, BUT YOU LOSE CREDIT FOR STUPIDLY THROWING 13.5 MIL AT THE TWO OF THEM TO SIT ON THE BENCH AND GET HAND JOBS FROM THE TEAM MASSEUSE. NO CHECK PLUS FOR THE NET SMART MOVES CANCELED OUT BY THE DUMB MOVES.

8) For acquiring Milledge while subtracting Ryan Church;

I AGREE. FULL CHECK PLUS. GOOD RIDDANCE TO RYAN "JEWS ARE DOOMED BECAUSE THEY DON'T GO TO" CHURCH.

9) For hiring, retaining, and working with a first class scouting organization;

AGAIN, ISN'T THIS MORE A KASTEN THING? IF NOT, THEN FINE, CHECK-PLUS.

10) For developing decent teams while working for some of the cheapest (Schott, MLB) owners ever and for developing a good team under the Lerners.

NO CHECK PLUS! HIS TEAMS WEREN'T DECENT! SCHOTT WON A WORLD SERIES WITHOUT BOWDEN AND HE INHERITED A 90-WIN TEAM AND HAD ONE OF THE HIGHEST PAYROLLS IN BASEBALL IN HIS FIRST COUPLE YEARS THERE! AND BESIDES! PAYROLL ISN'T AN EXCUSE! WHAT'S BILLY BEANE'S EXCUSE?? OR THE TWINS OR THE WHITE SOX?

Now that all said (this is still me, no longer in CAPS), I put it on the scale and it doesn't balance out for me at least the strikes against him (one playoff team in 14 years; inability to draft and develop in Cincy, esp. pitching; the public statements on "winning now" that contradict the rest of the team's leadership; the lack of organizational cohesion that results from keeping on the inherited guy; embarrassing personal problems like comparing the players union to 9/11 and DUI).

Look at it another way--make a list like you did for JimBo on Walt Jocketty, who was available last off season, or Wayne Krivsky, or even Mike Rizzo, and JimBo loses.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

hey barry -

nothing wrong with republicans! can we call collin balester finally?

Posted by: Section 111 (Formerly 223 @ RFK) | May 6, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

I'm pleased to see the knish count begin to outpace the Galarraga count. I've never had a knish, but I'm infinitely more interested on the intricacies of kosher rules than I am in a throw-in who happens to be currently outperforming expectations.

That being said, both "knish" and "Galarraga" are immensely fun words.

Posted by: John in Mpls | May 6, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Note: The opinions expressed by Steven on Capitol Hill do not necessarily reflect the views of the staff, management, workers, residents or occasional visitors to the Capitol Hill neighborhood. Posters who also use "Capitol Hill" in their handles want to make this point especially clear. Thank you.

Posted by: Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Heh heh heh, did anyone else hear the Gumbys reading Steven's posts when it was in all caps.

"I... THINK... ALL... PEOPLE... STAND... ING... IN... WATER... SHOULD... BE... TAXED!"

Sorry, Steven! Also, as I understand it, the GM and Pres and owners all are involved in hiring a manager in modenr ball, though it's the GM's primary responsibility. And I thought Randy was a hold over from the Frank days.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Catching back in....

We would have to trade for Sabathia (and give up the prospects) because if Cleveland can't get him to re-sign they are unlikely to take the chance of only getting 2 draft picks for him.

If Sabathia really wants to push it he can refuse to negotiate an extension and leave Cleveland with less trade leverage (like us w/ Soriano in '06).

If we don't have an extension agreed to before a trade I wouldn't give up half my original "offer'.

Posted by: estuartj | May 6, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

'I think the real question, flynnie, would be which pitcher makes better knishes.'

Absolutely the funniest thing I have ever read in a blog!

Posted by: Dick | May 6, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

STEVEN ON CAPITAL HILL: I say firing is too good for JimBow. Let's KILL him!

Posted by: Ira | May 6, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

not using this comment to support bowden, but how can you call vidro for WMP a wash? even if you say "one bum for another," he at least ended up paying $5m+ per year less for the bum. and the bum had *some* potential, whereas vidro had none at that point.

Posted by: 231 | May 6, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse

Man, do I know what you mean.

-----

But I have to admit, my heart skipped a beat when I read those 4 names in Boswell's column today.

Posted by: John in Mpls | May 6, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

I'm not saying JimBow is the best GM ever, just that he is above average and has done his job well for the Nationals. I do not care one little bit how well he did or did not perform in Cincy. I do care that he has made the Nats better (not worse) here in DC.

What would/could another GM have done differently? Would we really be better if we had not traded away Bray? Would he have been a better GM if he declined the Kearns trade because he was worried that Majewski might be injurred? (I'm sorry, I can't do that deal, take Rauch instead, I'll keep the injurred guy). Could he really have made a trade that was better than the no-trade of Soriano? How about if that trade increased payroll by $10M or $15M? How about if he trades the two prospects for a proven major leaguer for 2009? Would the Cubs take Zimmerman and Smoker for Soriano and the cost savings now? (I would).

And, I just don't agree that all bad decisions are Bowden's and all good decisions must have been made by Kasten. That's a silly position to take. Don't you think that if Kasten wanted to trade Soriano, he would have asked Bowden to do so?

Posted by: NatBisquit | May 6, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

MY BRAIN HURTS!!! :)

(and, for the record, all caps text tends to to be much more unreadable than caps and lowercase)

---

Heh heh heh, did anyone else hear the Gumbys reading Steven's posts when it was in all caps.

Posted by: natsfan1a (or would that be 2a?) | May 6, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

I believe St. Claire was here before Manny, and Jim put him under contract before he had a manager.

Posted by: Arkymark | May 6, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

I thought I remembered gripes that the new manager wouldn't want St. Claire and JimBo was being oafish in hiring him.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | May 6, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Those were the gripes, and I think now as I thought then that they were dumb. St. Claire is arguably the best at what he does of anyone in a Nationals uniform. Any incoming manager who couldn't or wouldn't see the value in working with him was obviously a "bad fit" for a situation like this.

Posted by: i hate walks | May 6, 2008 5:46 PM | Report abuse

St. Claire has been the 'Spos/Nats pitching coach since 2003 and moved here with the team. He's a holdover from FRobby's staff and was told that he was going to be kept before Manny was hired, so the decision to retain him was Bowden's (or Bowden's in conjunction with Kasten and others), not Manny's.

Barry's article on his retention is here (including lots of speculation that Girardi would be the Nats manager!): http://tinyurl.com/ylhc49

Posted by: Ryan Dylan | May 6, 2008 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Any thread that quotes Walter Sobchack is a worthy thread, no matter how inane it might seem.

Shut the f up, Donnie...

Posted by: Duderino | May 6, 2008 6:02 PM | Report abuse

I have typed http://blog.washingtonpost.com/natsjournal/ into my browser window a few times and gotten the error page - can you just redirect that to http://blog.washingtonpost.com/nationalsjournal/?

Thanks from a lazy typer!

Posted by: Arlington, VA | May 6, 2008 6:03 PM | Report abuse

hah! I type "b, down-arrow, enter" into my browser to get here.

"You sure he won't mind?"
"...he's a nihilist."
"Ah. Must be exhausting!"

Posted by: i hate walks | May 6, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

I just heard a great John Wayne quote that some of you might like regarding Bowden;

"Life is hard; it's harder if you're stupid.'"

Posted by: estuartj | May 6, 2008 6:14 PM | Report abuse

I know this is WAY off topic, and someone might have answered the question already, but did we ever find out what was up with "Indiana Jones" on May 22nd on the Nat's schedule? Yes, I know that May 22nd is the day that it opens, but I was wondering if there was any other reason why the picture was there on the schedule on the website. Not that I mind, but I've been wondering.

(see, it's not a knish/Kosher food/Shabbat post :) ).

Posted by: LurkerNowPoster | May 6, 2008 6:18 PM | Report abuse

If Bowden gets credit for Manny, then he gets big negatives for keeping Frank's old school 50% CS butt around for 2 years. Call it a net wash for 2 terrible manager years and 2 good ones.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | May 6, 2008 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Lurker: I believe the Indiana Jones picture is on every team's schedule (I was buying tickets for an upcoming Nats @ Baltimore game and saw it there and I was checking the Boston schedule and saw it there). I assume the studio is paying MLB to put it there; no other tie-in that I can imagine apart from the possibility that an aged Harrison Ford needed HGH to get in better shape for the film.

Posted by: Section 133 | May 6, 2008 6:42 PM | Report abuse

Lurker: I believe the Indiana Jones picture is on every team's schedule (I was buying tickets for an upcoming Nats @ Baltimore game and saw it there and I was checking the Boston schedule and saw it there). I assume the studio is paying MLB to put it there; no other tie-in that I can imagine apart from the possibility that an aged Harrison Ford needed HGH to get in better shape for the film.

Posted by: Section 133 | May 6, 2008 6:42 PM
*****************************************************************

Thanks for the answer. I hadn't seen the other teams' sites. I had these high hopes that the studio was letting the Nats show the movie on their scoreboards. Now *that* would rock!

Posted by: LurkerNowPoster | May 6, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

HA! BALK THAT!

Posted by: A.K. | May 6, 2008 10:38 PM | Report abuse

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