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More weather and wrists

Don't want to mess up anybody's plans here, so I should mention this first. The stadium scoreboard had posted the 8:30 start time, but in the press box, the last word we got was that things could start by 8. So, if you're coming, come fast. And take the Metro.

Nick Johnson's injury merits a bit more, too.

He's going to spend the night in Minnesota and undergo the arthroscopy tomorrow. It's basically exploratory surgery to check out what, exactly, is still causing the soreness in Johnson's wrist.

Bowden said Johnson, "might be out for the year." But he added: "We'll know more tomorrow [after the operation]," he added. "They're going to go in and look and see what it is."

Johnson's career track record makes this news less surprising than it should be. He's been snakebitten his entire career. He missed all of 2007 with that leg injury and reported to spring training this year hopeful for a season that, finally, involved playing instead of pain. When this injury happened May 13, it at first seemed innocuous enough. He swung at a pitch against the New York Mets... he stayed in the game for an inning. Then, he was ruled out for 4-6 weeks. Then, he needed a cast for his wrist. Then, he needed it for two more weeks then expected. Then, he got the cast removed and realized the injury was still sore.

Welcome to Nick Johnson's recurring nightmare.

So long as we're talking about Washington's expansive list of the injured and ailing, here are a few more updates for ya.

* Austin Kearns, on the disabled list since May 22 with a right elbow injury, took batting practice this afternoon. Bowden said that Kearns could begin a rehab assignment Thursday and rejoin the team before the All-Star break.

* Closer Chad Cordero, meanwhile, is rehabbing in Florida. Bowden saw him recently during a trip down there to evaluate the team's young talent and gave a promising report: "Chad is doing well. I saw him throw his side last Thursday. Very encouraged. Probably in the best shape he's been in, I think, in his career. And mechanically he looked very sound. I'm at least optimistic he has a chance to come back maybe after the All-Star break."

By Chico Harlan  |  June 23, 2008; 7:39 PM ET
 
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Next: The implications of a lineup card

Comments

Awesome stuff, Chico. Keep it coming.

Where will Kearn's rehab assignment be? Some of us are going to see the P-Nats for 4th of July. It would be awesome if he were there.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 7:48 PM | Report abuse

NJ makes Fragile Fred Lynn seem like Cal Ripken Jr. in comparison.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 23, 2008 7:58 PM | Report abuse

NN,

hopefully if can o'kearns isn't at potomac, wmp will be there by then.

Posted by: natsscribe | June 23, 2008 7:59 PM | Report abuse

...sigh....

Posted by: Jason | June 23, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Anybody who has been around Nick knew that hurting his wrist swinging the bat could be a season ending injury. So could a hangnail! I have been telling friends to watch how long it takes Nick to get back compared to David Ortiz, who suffered the same injury a few days later.

For all you Bowden haters, JimBow knew what he was doing when he signed Dmitri and locked up $10 million in first basemen. If we have learned anything about Nick over the past 4 years, it is you can't count on him to be in the lineup.

Posted by: Ira | June 23, 2008 8:14 PM | Report abuse

Bowden's optimistic that Chad could be back by all star break? So in reality we wont probably see him for another couple months. I take anything this team says in regards to injuries these days with a grain of salt.

Posted by: Nats703 | June 23, 2008 8:17 PM | Report abuse

the term is "snakebit."

also, try using complete sentences for a change, please. My goodness.

Posted by: your high school english teacher | June 23, 2008 8:18 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure what's worse -- that NJ may be out all season or that Kearns will be back soon.

Posted by: natty by nature | June 23, 2008 8:19 PM | Report abuse

nbn,

flip a coin.

Posted by: natsscribe | June 23, 2008 8:22 PM | Report abuse

We won't see Wily Mo DFA'd until Kearns returns. For all we know, Wily Mo may have already been claimed off waivers and pulled back, so Bowden is hoping something clicks.

It wouldn't be a bad idea if you were, say, the San Diego Padres or some other hapless National League team to claim Wily Mo and offer only the penalty fee (and maybe a high-risk PTBNL) for him. If you get him, it's for a song and you might get lucky. If you don't, there's always going to be some sad sap worse than you.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 8:23 PM | Report abuse

Did ya'll see the video with the switch pitcher/switch hitter face-off? They go about 7 minutes switching sides on each other. Pretty funny and pretty cool.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KkPbJV2dffI

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 8:23 PM | Report abuse

NatsNut-That was one helluva post showing Manny's doing everything with the lineup but pick names from a hat! I like the idea of putting Wily Mo at 4 and Lastings at leadoff. Why not?

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 8:24 PM | Report abuse

"Posted by: RIP George Carlin | June 23, 2008 4:20 PM "

Gee, he was just here a minute ago ...

Posted by: We'l miss you more than you'll miss us. | June 23, 2008 8:26 PM | Report abuse

Guzman hustles.

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 8:30 PM | Report abuse

Lastings has his best numbers batting second. .298/.354/.439 67 PA. Of course, most of that was with feared Zimmerman batting behind him, before it became apparent that the Face of the Franchise was in a slump.

Wily Mo's best numbers with any significant plate appearances come batting 8th, .275/.314/.315 in 54 appearances. Geeze, the big guy really needs a break. Maybe when Austin returns he can run into him and put him on the DL, because WMP needs to get the [AB] out of the majors for about two months to work something out.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 8:30 PM | Report abuse

Oh, that's right I almost forgot.

mjames, i liked your lineup experiment suggestion. Not much else Manny can play with, so why not?

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Guzman hustles? No he doesn't. When did this nonsense start up? Guzman is one of the chief perps on the team of lazy fielding and running. If he thinks he's ground out,he's not going to try to leg it out, no matter who is in front of him sliding spikes up into the second baseman.

If, on the other hand, he thinks he has a chance for a hit, he'll go all out. Let's not confuse hustling with hitting over .300 now. You want a hustler? Mr. Wil Nieves is your man. That guy always wants to play.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 8:37 PM | Report abuse

the wasteland of minimal production is only SLUGGING .315 as an eighth place hitter? must be all of that futile flailing at sliders off the plate.

Posted by: natsscribe | June 23, 2008 8:39 PM | Report abuse

Okay, maybe you guys can help with this. There's a great old George Carlin routine that I can't find online, because it involves death, and Google, in it's infinite wisdom, thinks timeliness is more important than search accuracy.

It's a routine about old men talking about friends that have passed away. They keep mentioning guys and talking about what good men they are and how much they meant to the world. Then they mention one guy and suddenly start yelling, "[AB] him, that motherbooner is still alive!"

I've been wanting to listen to it all day, because I think Carlin would have thought it was hilarious how much adoration he's been getting today.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 8:40 PM | Report abuse

thanks flynnie.

NN

Posted by: p.s. | June 23, 2008 8:40 PM | Report abuse

Sore? It's just sore???
Tiger Woods, Albert Pujols, Nick Johnson is not.

Posted by: Just Play | June 23, 2008 8:40 PM | Report abuse

I remember Nick talking about his daughter getting a little bump or bruise and he said "She's a Johnson. She gets hurt."

So cute.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 8:47 PM | Report abuse

I missed the beginning of the game did my dream of #20 being the honorary line-up card presenter to Mike Sciocia occur? Ahh the good ole days of the summer '05.. "I wasn't going to let him intimidate me," Robinson said later. "I am the intimidator."

Posted by: sec 424 | June 23, 2008 8:48 PM | Report abuse

Hey I just remembered something. There is a gene in some (though not all) redheads that gives them a very high tolerance for pain.

Draft redheads.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 8:49 PM | Report abuse

Is it just me, or do their uniforms look pretty much the same? I turn around to watch the game and I thought I entered another dimension of Nats vs. Nats.

(It went 18-19 in 21 innings, each team scored 6 runs in the same innings. Lannan hit the walk-off)

Posted by: Uniforms | June 23, 2008 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Is it just me, or does the Nats management drag their feet on getting qualified doctors to examine their players (not team doctors, but actual specialists)? First, Zim. Now, Johnson, six weeks after his injury. Is this just being cheap or incompetent? Neither is a good answer.

Posted by: Ashburn | June 23, 2008 8:54 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else notice how Willie Harris takes the handoff from the 3rd base coach just like LMillz?

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | June 23, 2008 8:54 PM | Report abuse

There is a gene in some (though not all) redheads that gives them a very high tolerance for pain.

-----

Confirmed: not all.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Just tuned in after a swim meet and related kid duty. You know you've become accustomed to rooting for a bad team when you tune in late and think hey, great, we're not behind yet. And when you think, upon reading news of Nick's latest delay, that Bowden and Chico are not doctors and that exploratory surgery might discover nothing. And when Willie Harris hits another homer as I type and we actually have a lead! Breadcrumbs. I will eat them. Cheep cheep!

Posted by: Bob L. Head | June 23, 2008 8:56 PM | Report abuse

What is the deal with Willie Harris? Bat him fourth.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 8:56 PM | Report abuse

LOL, 506!!!

BTW, gameday has the replay of Flippie's flip. Erick Aybar was totally safe.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Holy Smokes, Bergie, brought the game face today. Go nine!

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 8:59 PM | Report abuse

TV has been great tonight. Rob Reiner in the booth does a spontaneous play-by-play on Flip's flip to 1st - "Geez! What a play!"- and then the "Coors Freeze Frame" is Willie's home run from last night, after which he hits another one! Bob Carpenter said that he's hit 11 home runs in 7 years and we've seen two of them in two nights!

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Reiner's on radio now too.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 9:03 PM | Report abuse

Rob Reiner is taking his son on a ballpark tour. They've been to all of them in the last 4 years. His favorite? PNC in Pittsburgh. NatsPark is in his top five, combining the modern advances with the intimacy of an old-time park.

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 9:06 PM | Report abuse

Wow. Rob Reiner's dad Carl switched from being a Giants fan to a Dodgers fan when they brought up Jackie Robinson. Awesome. And Rob gets "Meatheaded" every day.

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 9:11 PM | Report abuse

Props to whoever said we should bat Dukes ahead of Guzman just to watch the mayhem at second!

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 9:14 PM | Report abuse

How did he get away with only one run there? Hats off, J-Berg

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 9:15 PM | Report abuse

We TOTALLY should have shelled out for Torii Hunter, man. Stupid, cheap Lerners and terrible JimBo.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 9:27 PM | Report abuse

506-Whatchoodrinkin?

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 9:35 PM | Report abuse

Section 506 I know you're just trying to be funny, but please spare us on this one. I guess it's only a long season when it comes to Nats players, and yet opposing players merit stupid snarky comments based on one at-bat?

Posted by: Lerners ARE Cheap | June 23, 2008 9:36 PM | Report abuse

Hey, LAC! Let us break the bread of affliction together - how 'bout those 3 lob last inning?

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 9:39 PM | Report abuse

LAC, maybe it's not based on one at bat. It's certainly frustrating to be hearing all year long the same litany of people that should have been signed and who appear to be not so great anyway. One at bat or start merits comments on all sorts of Nats players or players formerly with the Nats, why can't everyone indulge.

But I'm not trying to pick beef with you, buddy. We've not had a real throw down lately, I'm sorry, didn't mean to poke my finger in your eye. Please accept my apology, my snappy words were meant for another.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Whompin' Willie Harris! Please, please don't strand him on 3rd!

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 9:47 PM | Report abuse

Alright! go Nieves! Too bad that means we have to go to the bullpen....

Posted by: SF Fan | June 23, 2008 9:48 PM | Report abuse

Methinks (hehehe) Willie Harris got the news Austin Kearns was going to start rehabbing and decided he wanted to keep playing in the majors.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 9:48 PM | Report abuse

What's HARRIS drinking?? Please. Pass it around the dugout.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 9:49 PM | Report abuse

'Bout time we caught a break...

Posted by: Sal | June 23, 2008 9:50 PM | Report abuse

Blind Outhouse Luck! Nice slide, and the Nats are up 2-1 in the bottom of the 7th on the broad shoulders of Willie Harris!

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Harris, I meant... I guess an error is the only way PloD can score somone.

Posted by: SF Fan | June 23, 2008 9:51 PM | Report abuse

No problem, Section 506. I hear you about people cherry-picking one performance for guys and pointing to it as if it shows something--I generally think that's silly, in either direction. With our own guys, it's a bit different, because we are pointing to particular performances as exemplary of their overall performance--for example Felipe or Wily Mo.

The thing about Hunter is that on top of performance I think he could have set a good example on the field. It would be great for guys like Milledge and Dukes to have someone to learn from.

Hey flynnie, your review of old Boz columns inspired me--I'll have something later for you about how the Nats are going backwards on identified "core guys."

Posted by: Lerners ARE Cheap | June 23, 2008 9:52 PM | Report abuse

Totally off topic here, and I am not sure where else to look for the answer...
Any word or idea on how many folks will be attending the game on Friday evening?Advance ticket sales numbers, etc?
Thanks for the help.

Posted by: Dadryan | June 23, 2008 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Way to focus, FLop.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 23, 2008 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Ill say it again.

DROP FLOP!

Posted by: natsinthevalley | June 23, 2008 9:59 PM | Report abuse

a beautiful bergmann effort has been flushed by flop.

Posted by: natsscribe | June 23, 2008 9:59 PM | Report abuse

"Oh,my! . . . .Oh, my." Bob Carpenter

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 10:00 PM | Report abuse

This sucks...

Posted by: BSG | June 23, 2008 10:00 PM | Report abuse

seriously can we just have lopez executed like on the field right now he is such a worthless piece of crap i hope he never plays again just send him to whoever will take him or send him down or anything i cant stand watchin him play if you can even call it that

Posted by: love | June 23, 2008 10:00 PM | Report abuse

Sigh. The errors giveth and the errors taketh away.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 23, 2008 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Are you FREAKIN KIDDING ME??? It took, what, 30 seconds to lose Bergie's win??

starting pitchers, if you want to take the rest of the team out back, we'll look the other way

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Carpenter keeps saying "This is how the Angels play."

No, I think it's a better example of how the Nationals play.

Posted by: res21 | June 23, 2008 10:02 PM | Report abuse

My expectations have been so lowered that I hope the Nats win 40 games before they lose 60.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 23, 2008 10:05 PM | Report abuse

I've told you people this repeatedly, I had no desire to go to a crappy team in a new league. I want to win a championship. I may have said that DC would have been nice, but that was just for this thing called "leverage" that my agent explained to me. I'll have him drop by and explain it to you all, too, later.

Posted by: tori hunter | June 23, 2008 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Sat. night Felipe proved he doesn't know how to bunt. Am I the only one who thinks are bunting is as bad as any in baseball?

Posted by: Jaime, Vienna | June 23, 2008 10:05 PM | Report abuse

if manny doesnt bench lopez i just will not be able to respect him any longer. his head isnt in the game in any sense of the word and either he needs a change of scenery or a new career, either way he should not be on the nationals 25 man roster august 1st and if he is there is something seriously wrong with the baseball world

Posted by: love | June 23, 2008 10:06 PM | Report abuse

love,

they'll probablty keep him to get draft picks after he goes FA. in the immortal words of chester a. riley, "whatta revoltin' development this is."

Posted by: natsscribe | June 23, 2008 10:08 PM | Report abuse

Torii we don't care what you have to say in hindsight since the Nats didn't even try to court you. At this point the issue isn't whether or not you would have signed here. Rather, you have become exemplary of a larger debate about the approach the Nats should be taking in trying to build a real team.

Posted by: Lerners ARE Cheap | June 23, 2008 10:09 PM | Report abuse

We won't be getting any draft picks for Felipe Lopez, I guarantee you that.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Draft picks for Felipe--is there such a thing as a "Type F" free agent?

Posted by: Lerners ARE Cheap | June 23, 2008 10:12 PM | Report abuse

We can place this one squarely on Acta's shaved head. Pulling a pitcher after what, 73 pitches through 7 innings? Why, just because he ALWAYS goes to the bullpen in the 7th??? Dammit, why does this team always find a way to crap the bed? I'm so bloody frustrated at this point.

Posted by: BIM | June 23, 2008 10:13 PM | Report abuse

Now he fields the damn ball.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 23, 2008 10:20 PM | Report abuse

BIM,

It's natsluck.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 23, 2008 10:22 PM | Report abuse

I can't wait to hear your take on "core players" LAC!

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 10:23 PM | Report abuse

This closer, "K-Rod," thre the fastest pitch ever recorded by pitchf/x, the dandy laser system for tracking pitch speeds: 105mph from the pitcher's hand, and 92mph crossing the plate. Who to and where? Jose Guillen, in Seattle!

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 10:27 PM | Report abuse

OMG. Felipe didn't swing on the first pitch! i can't believe it.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 10:29 PM | Report abuse

NatsNut,

I'm more impressed with the fact that he didn't ground into a game-ending double play!

Posted by: natsinthevalley | June 23, 2008 10:30 PM | Report abuse

Felipe takes the weakest hacks I've ever seen.

Posted by: Sal | June 23, 2008 10:31 PM | Report abuse

Would have been poetic justice if FLop had grounded unto a game-ending DP.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 23, 2008 10:31 PM | Report abuse

Down with PLoD, Flop and WiMP...

Posted by: natsinthevalley | June 23, 2008 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Belliard STEALS????

I LOVE that guy.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 10:33 PM | Report abuse

my head aches.

Posted by: natsscribe | June 23, 2008 10:34 PM | Report abuse

"Well played until the 8th inning." Bob Carpenter

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 10:35 PM | Report abuse

can we come up with a flop quotient? i've seen him personally cost us 3 or 4 wins this year with errors, mental and physical, just in the field not counting GIDP that he should never hit into because hes got some speed, just no hustle. this team would be so much better without him on the field and in the lineup

Posted by: love | June 23, 2008 10:37 PM | Report abuse

Flynnie, I'm going to have to take a raincheck for now, this damn loss took too much out of me for tonight, time to forget about the Nats until tomorrow.

And hey "Tori Hunter" as an addendum to my earlier response to you, you really should learn how to spell your own name.

Posted by: Lerners ARE Cheap | June 23, 2008 10:39 PM | Report abuse

love, let's drink to Felipe Lopez! LAC, anticipation is the greater part of joy!

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 10:44 PM | Report abuse

thank you, deepak chopra.

Posted by: natsscribe | June 23, 2008 10:47 PM | Report abuse

We are now on pace to lose 100.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 10:47 PM | Report abuse

Sorry. That was totally GHE.

We are now on pace to win 62.

Posted by: NatsNut | June 23, 2008 10:48 PM | Report abuse

Nice game Felipe!!

Posted by: Jason | June 23, 2008 10:50 PM | Report abuse

"We can place this one squarely on Acta's shaved head. Pulling a pitcher after what, 73 pitches through 7 innings"

BIM, rhetorical question here, but are you completely insane? He pulled Bergmann for a pinch hitter because the go ahead run was at third with one out. There is no manager (past, present, future, or parallel universe) who would have done differently.

Posted by: joebleux | June 23, 2008 10:51 PM | Report abuse

OK, LAC, I know you're the smartest baseball mind in the city and everything, but your argument may be stronger if you used a player who was actually attainable as the poster boy for it.

The chance of me being on the Nationals was just the same as ARod, Mickey Mantle or Babe Ruth spending this summer on 1/2 St. The Lerners, despite their many flaws and mistakes, realized this.

Posted by: Torii Hunter | June 23, 2008 10:52 PM | Report abuse

Bob Carpenter says that we will have to win 2 over 500 for the rest of the season to win 73, and that falls short of the goal for the season.

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 10:53 PM | Report abuse

If A-Rod played here, he'd be on a flight w/Nick for surgery at the Mayo Clinic; the Babe would lead the league in walks; and the Mick would be on the DL for something or other.

Posted by: flynnie | June 23, 2008 10:56 PM | Report abuse

To Ira,

While NJ certainly has a history of being injury prone, unless you're an orthopedist and have examined the two of them, I don't think you can necessarily say that he and Big Papi have the same injury. You can certainly say that they're similar, based upon what has been reported. Moreover, I'm pretty sure that Ortiz hasn't returned to the lineup yet, so perhaps we should wait before passing judgment on Nick.

To BIM,

Manny made the correct call to pinch hit for the pitcher with a man on third and one out in a tie ball game. I don't see how you can even question that call.

Posted by: blueson | June 23, 2008 11:03 PM | Report abuse

NN,

62 wins? i'm beginning to have expansion Senators flashbacks of their first four seasons - 61-100, 61-101, 56-106, and 62-100. Yikes!

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 23, 2008 11:03 PM | Report abuse

what's up with ladson with two stories and a mailbag section on the wasteland of minimal production? i thought his articles weren't supposed to be such blatant pro-jimbow decision propaganda.

Posted by: natsscribe | June 23, 2008 11:10 PM | Report abuse

Had enough? Register your displeasure by signing the Fire Jim Bowden petition.

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/fire-bowden

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | June 23, 2008 11:21 PM | Report abuse

Chico,
Any chance you can ask Orr and Rivera who called for the ball? Or did we skip that at Spring Training this year?

Posted by: 756* | June 23, 2008 11:25 PM | Report abuse

Before I comment on the game I first want to hear Manny's comments and maybe those of Bowden.

Speaking of Bowden did anyone ask him what Cordero's pitch speed was . Was he tossing or actually throwing from a mound. It would be helpful if you comments had adressed this.

Also waiting to see if the Post just provides the game or actually starts questioning Manny and Bimbo.

Posted by: mjames | June 23, 2008 11:27 PM | Report abuse

Sadly, it appears the 2007 prediction was a year late.

Posted by: SC Nats Fan | June 23, 2008 11:58 PM | Report abuse

just got home a little while ago. it was such a fun game to watch (and nice weather, after the delay ended), that it just made me sick to see flopez boot that ball. sloppy, sloppy, sloppy. harris had a great night. bergmann pitched really well. flopez just stinks (since i can't post the words i'd really use).

Posted by: 231 | June 24, 2008 12:37 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for giving us the crappiest team in all of baseball. I really enjoy seeing Pete Orr, Joel Hanrhan and Wily Mo Pena instead of Torii Hunter, Kyle Lohse, etc.

Posted by: Lerners are cheap btards | June 24, 2008 12:49 AM | Report abuse

Not sure if this has been posted...during the game, the scoreboard said Bowden will hold a live web chat tomorrow at 11 AM...I'm assuming its on nationals.com but didnt catch the specific address. It will be interesting to see which questions actually receive replies.

Posted by: Los Doce Ocho | June 24, 2008 1:04 AM | Report abuse

Saw one of my Baltimore relatives this weekend at the beach. He claims that if the Nats cant make the deal with Boston for Guzman (apparently Boston not too enamored with Lugo), Guzman will be an Oriole next year. I usually dont give much creedance to these type of rumors but this relative is very accurate with Oriole rumors. The Orioles are not too worried by anything the Lerners will bid for Guzman but see any offseason competition coming from other teams. Apparently, there will not be many good shortstops in the offseason.

Though less certain on this, my relative also doesn't see Zimmerman in a Nats uniform in two to three years. The Lerners are viewed as inexperienced and unable to comprehend what it takes to keep good players. Despite recent injury, Zimmerman is seen as a superb 3rd baseman who will be a 270-275 hitter, 20 to 25 hr's and 90 rbi's. Many teams will happily bid for his services.

Posted by: Count Demoney | June 24, 2008 1:20 AM | Report abuse

I should add that my relative holds no animus towards the Nats and believes that the Nats with the right ownership will be a richer and stronger franchise than Baltimore -- even if Angelos had been a great owner the past decade.


Posted by: Count Demoney | June 24, 2008 1:31 AM | Report abuse

Though less certain on this, my relative also doesn't see Zimmerman in a Nats uniform in two to three years. The Lerners are viewed as inexperienced and unable to comprehend what it takes to keep good players. Despite recent injury, Zimmerman is seen as a superb 3rd baseman who will be a 270-275 hitter, 20 to 25 hr's and 90 rbi's. Many teams will happily bid for his services.

Posted by: Count Demoney | June 24, 2008 1:20 AM

We will see how Zimmerman's agent values his price. If you want David Wright money then you have to hit like David Wright. A declining average crossing with an ascending asking price makes for a harder sell. The Lerner's and Zimmerman still have plenty of time to figure it all out. Hopefully, he will be a Nat 3 years from now. Better yet, let us hope that he has the true break out year next year (without the dismal spring slump) that will force the Lerners to open up the purse.

Posted by: Dale | June 24, 2008 7:02 AM | Report abuse

Obviously, the next level that Jason Bergmann must attain in order to get a win is to start spending 30 minutes a day in the batting cage so Acta won't have to take out the only chance we have for a win.

Bueson and JoeBluex, did you not have a bad feeling in the pit of your stomach knowing that the game was going to be in the hands of the bullpen? I certainly did.

Posted by: Dale | June 24, 2008 7:10 AM | Report abuse

"The Lerners are viewed as inexperienced and unable to comprehend what it takes to keep good players."

This is what Lerners ARE Cheap and others have been saying, and what I feared when I read their remarks from the first winter meeting that the money being paid free agent pitchers was "insane." Thanks, Count, for the news! You can just see MacPhail looking to the Nats as his farm club.

Posted by: flynnie | June 24, 2008 7:11 AM | Report abuse

With our performance last night I think we are on track for 100 loss season. Should this play out this team will have the distinction of being the third worst team in the Nats/Expos 39 year history.

I know the farm system was harvested when the team was acquired (thank you Minaya) but the major league team was at least competitive. Bowden has gradually destroyed this team as he has attempted to rebuild it.

The report that Cordero looks good is most likely bogus. To this guy everything is great. His peers believe he can't be trusted. That is is why he can never make deal, unlike other teams such as Boston, Mets, Arizona, Marlins, Phillies, etc. As first step Bowden needs to go. I would make Rizzo the GM, assuming we cannot get Benefest.

I sort of wish the Nats would raid the Marlins front office after what Loria did to the Expos.

Posted by: mjames | June 24, 2008 7:34 AM | Report abuse

Wow, the sky IS falling.

"Speaking of Bowden did anyone ask him what Cordero's pitch speed was . Was he tossing or actually throwing from a mound. It would be helpful if you comments had adressed this."

Teams regularly claim to not put their pitchers on radar gun until right before or even in their first games so that they don't have to answer this question. Generally, reacquiring velocity is one of the last thing pitchers work on, before pacing themselves to go long.

I'm not sure what rehab they'll have Cordero doing, though, since loss of velocity was his primary symptom.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 24, 2008 7:35 AM | Report abuse

And now, these cheery words from nats.com about the possible fate of the Wasteland of Minimal Production...

"Don't look for the Nationals to make a roster move regarding Pena anytime soon, according to a baseball source. Pena is out of options, and the team is not going to give up on him because of his potential to hit a lot of home runs and drive in a lot of runs."

Maybe he's just the Wasteland of Missing Potential. Ai-yi-yi.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 24, 2008 8:00 AM | Report abuse

Fire Clint!

Posted by: The First Step Towards Recovery | June 24, 2008 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Wanted - Fantasy baseball advice.

I can play McLouth against Rasner or Torii Hunter vs. Shawn Hill (guest managing my brother's team). AVG /R /HR /RBI /Ks (a negative category) / SBs count. I'm leaning towards McLouth b/c Hunter has had problems on the road, v righties, and a mediocre June. Thoughts (other than we should have signed Torii, how did we give away Rasner, and Shawn Hill should sleep with the fishes)?

Posted by: PTBL | June 24, 2008 8:31 AM | Report abuse

Here you go, 506:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3PiZSFIVFiU

Posted by: natsfan1a | June 24, 2008 8:33 AM | Report abuse

Here's an older one:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1nNHnoqPwas&feature=related

Posted by: natsfan1a | June 24, 2008 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Guzman does too hustle. He has limited range as a fielder, but he runs out the competitive plays. He is perhaps the best baserunner on the team. Not a great base stealer, but an above average baserunner. He makes good decisions, gets to top speed quickly, slides correctly, and picks up the third base coach about 6 steps before second base. As a fielder, he no longer dives for the ball but I wonder if that has to do with the shoulder injury he had a few years ago.

IMHO, he only has another 2 years as a starting shortstop before someone converts him to second or outfield, or utility. Whoever signs him will likely have to give him a four year contract, so they are likely to overpay for the final two years. However, with inflationary spending it might still be worth it. Boston and Baltimore are just two of the teams needing a shortstop, but there are several teams who can deal including the Angels. An intereasting point to wonder about: Is Felipe one of those guys who just can't play for a bad team? He might really blossom for a team like the Redsox. He has the talent, he just seems to give up and lose focus. Too bad he can't clean up his act long enough to get an audition.


Posted by: NatBisquit | June 24, 2008 8:42 AM | Report abuse

felipe lopez and nick johnson have no business being on this team next year. please get rid of both asap they are dragging down this already pathetic franchise.

Posted by: nats | June 24, 2008 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Ladson forgot to include the critical fact on the unwillingness to part with WMP - he is a former Cincinnati Red. Probably the only chance WMP would have to improve would be regular playing. That can be done in AAA or on another team. But Bowden is so obsessed that he would rather have WMP getting rusty on the bench and taking up a critical roster spot.

Posted by: Count Demoney | June 24, 2008 8:45 AM | Report abuse

It's time for me to bail on this season (and this blog).

The precipitating event: Manny's quote in this morning's Post that "defense is our strong point," or something like that. If defense is the Nats' strength, what are their weaknesses? Let me count the ways.

A bright spot: other MLB teams will be lined up in the off season to bid on LoDuca, Guzman, Lopez, Pena, Young, Johnson, Dukes, Harris, Orr, Langerhans, Kearns, and the other Nats rising stars that management has discovered and put on display. With all this mouth-watering potential, the off season will give Papa Lerner, Kasten, and Bowden a chance to really show their stuff.

Posted by: JohnR(VA) | June 24, 2008 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Just to be clear I am not part of the pitchfork brigade on Bowden. In my view -Bowden is just a very average GM with a weakness/fetish for Cincinnati Reds. Again in my view and with the Nats' current situation, the best GM in MLB would have difficulty improving things significantly in the short term.

Posted by: Count Demoney | June 24, 2008 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Thanks, 1a! You're fantastic!

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | June 24, 2008 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Now batting...

Posted by: New post. | June 24, 2008 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Ashburn - I'm with you on this one. Why does the team wait so long to evaluate these injuries? This is ridiculous that they waited 6 weeks to get a specialist!!! They did the same thing to Chief and I'll bet Zimmerman is their next victim. If they checked these injuries out with a specialist first, maybe it wouldn't cost us the season. I feel so bad for Nick, I don't care what anybody says, his injuries have been freaky; it's not like he keeps pulling hamstrings. And he worked so hard to get back, my prayers are with him today and I'm hoping for a miracle.

Posted by: cadeck | June 24, 2008 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Blueson: If you need to wait, you either haven't been paying attention or just started following the team. Read today's Post for a litany of the time lost by Nick.

To be fair, he is a very good baseball player WHEN HEALTHY. So was John Patterson. So is Shawn Hill. And Nick had to endure one of the most gruesome injuries ever seen. However, he has missed months at a time being injured crossing the plate without sliding and simply swinging the bat. When Nick gets hurt and they say 'he'll be back by the All-Star game', don't forget to ask 'which season'?

One thing I have learned in four years is that when you get good players who can't stay on the field, you MOVE ON! Waiting for Nick and Shawn to get healthy will ensure MANY years of losing seasons. It ain't gonna happen! MOVE ON!

Posted by: Ira | June 24, 2008 10:11 AM | Report abuse

By the way, posted the fantasy advice request before I read the thread. did not want to step in the Torii rehash. Sorry.

On the issue of signing players, including Zimmerman: I do think that the management here may not completely comprehend salary inflation in baseball. Baseball has never had the kind of revenue growth it has had recently. Recall that in the offseason before '07, people had a hard time comprehending the money thrown at marginal pitchers like Gil Meche and players like JD Drew and Gary Matthews. Sure there were bad signings too (like the money tied up in Brandon Inge and Joe Crede, etc . . .), but after the last offseason, we can see now that the Hunter / Rowand / Silva deals, those pre-'07 contracts are beginning to look cheap for above-average outfielders and ##3-4 starters.

As for pitching, given its uncertainties, we may be better off throwing as many John Lannans against the wall and hoping a few stick. But field position players will cost more and more. I think when it comes to Zimmerman, it is true right that he is less of a player than David Wright and, I/M/O, hard pressed to have as good a career as even Ian Kinsler at a more scarce position. But Zimmerman will end up with a contract more like Wright than Kinsler because his 3 years of arbtration and his free agency will be after 5 or 6 more years of revenue growth and salary inflation than Wright and 4 more years than Kinsler.

Posted by: PTBNL | June 24, 2008 10:13 AM | Report abuse

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