Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
On Twitter: AdamKilgoreWP and PostSports  |  Facebook  |  E-mail alerts: Sports and Redskins  |  RSS

All the news that's fit to print -- and more

If there's an upside to New York, aside from the pastrami, it's that anything that happens here seems to super-size, almost automatically. So many people see everything; so many people talk about anything. As a result, stories live on -- even when "Mike and the Mad Dog" do not.

That said, I wanted to take a little tour of the New York media metropolis this morning, just to learn what's being said about Elijah Dukes. So much of how a game like this is remember depends on how it's processed and presented; remember, the whole mid-May "Softball girls" cheering incident at Shea, which also involved Dukes, didn't become a big deal until also a day after it happened... and only because Nelson Figueroa, the Mets pitcher involved, was so critical of the behavior of the Nats' bench.

So, here's what some NY media outleats are saying this morning...

Newsday had a full story on Dukes' night, describing his departure from the field in the ninth thusly: "Elijah Dukes put both hands up in the air, but he wasn't dancing to any music and waving them like he just didn't care. The Nationals' rightfielder had just stepped over the third base line and was strolling to the dugout when he just couldn't help himself. He had been the subject of the fans' ire all night afer a brief confrontation with Mike Pelfrey, and was imploring the crowd to crank up the decibel level -- with louder boos."

The New York Times gave little attention to the affair, saying that Pelfrey "incurred the wrath of Elijah Dukes, who had homered in the second, by throwing inside to him in the fourth inning."

The New York Post
also had a full story on Dukes, headlined, "Nats' Dukes Loses Cool." It summarizes not just Dukes' night, but much of his rap sheet. And it begins: "Knucklehead Elijah Dukes had to be restrained from going after Mike Pelfrey, stuck his tongue out at the Shea Stadium crowd, then finally incited the fans by waving his arms and blowing kisses to their chorus of boos. It was Dukes at his petulant worst. The Mets New York Mets beat Washington 13-10 last night to move 3½ games ahead of the Phillies in the NL East race. But the troubled and troubling Nationals outfielder - who has faced a host of legal issues ranging from drug charges to domestic abuse convictions and paternity cases from four different women - still managed to do what he does best: create drama."

Finally, The New York Daily News, too, had a separate story on Dukes. ("Hothead Elijah Dukes mixes it up with Pelfrey, Mets' fans") ... "The Nationals have worked with troubled outfielder Elijah Dukes on managing his anger this season, but his temper almost got the best of him Wednesday night in a couple of minor incidents with the Mets and their fans at Shea."

So, that's just a quick survey of what's out there. Gotta love New York.

Speaking of which, I have a plane to catch at La Guardia.

Enjoy the Nats' off day.

By Chico Harlan  |  September 11, 2008; 8:13 AM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Pelfrey: "He was telling me to 'Bring it on.' "
Next: P-Nats one win away

Comments

An off day after a loss? Fight! Fight!

Posted by: i hate walks | September 11, 2008 8:19 AM | Report abuse

Can anyone point to a situation where this has occurred with the Nats this season and the New York Mets were NOT involved?

With somewhat of an apology to O's exec, the Mets are the team that we most love to beat. The NY press is a pressure cooker, and the fans are like Philly without fists.

IMHO as long as he keeps this limited to taunting the Mets, and he doesn't actually get ruffled and lose his focus, concentration, and swing then I like it. Not just don't disapprove, I enjoy watching our boys get stoked and play with emotion.

Anyone who complained about FLopez lack of emotion can't really complain about Duke's excess of it, can they?

Posted by: i hate walks | September 11, 2008 8:33 AM | Report abuse

Cut it out, Chico. If you hate Dukes so much that you want to call him a "hothead" and a "knucklehead" or drudge up irrelevant garbage from the past or write racist crap like this: "Elijah Dukes put both hands up in the air, but he wasn't dancing to any music and waving them like he just didn't care"--write it yourself and don't hide behind this passive aggressive, "ooo look I'm just passing along what these NY papers wrote."

He talked a little. No violence, no ejection, nothing that will last beyond the day. You want restraint, you got it. You want him to be some prissy white boy like Zimmerman who never shows an ounce of emotion, well that ain't him. But between the blog and the gamer, you're way over the top.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | September 11, 2008 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Um, Steven, chill. NEW YORK PAPERS, not Chico, called Dukes a hothead and knucklehead.

Posted by: NatsNut | September 11, 2008 8:54 AM | Report abuse

NatsNut--I'm aware of that. Re-read what I wrote. I'm saying Chico shouldn't be passing along this garbage. He's spent the last 12 hours doing a hatchet job on Dukes. Enough. We saw the game. We understand that Dukes's temper deserves all the ink, and that Guzman's multi-HR game barely deserves a mention. Move on.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | September 11, 2008 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Not sure it was a hatchet job. I understand your point, but I feel like he included those stories to indicate how the NY media was blowing it out of proportion.

Posted by: Cavalier | September 11, 2008 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Dukes is a model of composure compared to the hotheaded Sand Diego Chicken, who had to be restrained by Payton Manning from going after a guy who says, "Actually, I don't like sports" in the latest Direct TV ad. We could tell from his appearance at PoNats Field that the chicken was about to blow. If Pelfrey zings a 90 mph heater near The Chicken's head, he'll long for the day of Elijah Dukes.

Posted by: flynnie | September 11, 2008 9:19 AM | Report abuse

Back in February, I posted in the comments to this very blog, and the Post printed in the dead tree edition, the following observation:

"Until Elijah Dukes runs over a puppy, steals candy from a toddler, or commits some equally heinous indiscretion while employed by the Nationals, I am prepared to really like the guy. I have seen nothing at all to suggest he is other than contrite for his terrible past behavior, and that he really wants to do well here.

I for one am going to give him a major benefit of the doubt until he proves me wrong.

Posted by: Deep Fried Screech | February 25, 2008 12:41 PM "

Last night, the Mets and their fans got under Dukes' skin, like they've done to countless players. His response was to make them pay with his bat, and call out the pitcher for coming after him inside. That's *exactly* what you want a hard charging team to do, because as noted, it took away the inside pitch.

As for the bit with the fans, they aren't really people -- they're Mets stadium dwellers. He did NOTHING that is out of line for any visiting player in that stadium. He just let them know he was listening, and that they should feel free to bring it along with their pitcher.

I continue to believe what I said in February: I have seen nothing at all to suggest he is other than contrite for his terrible past behavior, and that he really wants to do well here. He had hat one little disagreement with Manny earlier in the year, but other than that it sounds like he's been a great clubhouse guy, has the respect of his teammates, and has lifted the play of the whole team on the field.

Chico, you're the beat writer. Are you really going to jump on a guy from the home team for showing some fire against our biggest rival? Ask YOURSELF objectively: how would you have covered the Clemens / Piazza bat incident if you'd been working for a Boston paper? For a New York paper? We don't expect you to be a total homer, just like we don't expect you to be coldly objective on everything when you write. That said, the home town team and its players should get the benefit of the doubt in the home town paper. I think Dukes has earned it during his stay in Washington, and nothing last night changes that.

Whatever you do in your coverage of the Nats, please don't let Nats Journal become what Redskins Insider has become in the Redskins world -- a jaded and bitter mouthpiece for the author's one-sided views against the team.

Posted by: Deep Fried Screech | September 11, 2008 9:20 AM | Report abuse

I actually like Chico passing on the NY papers, I don't think it's an endorsement of it. I think it's more like "look how hysterical New York papers are."

Manny needs to frown and say this is inappropriate, that's the right thing to do. Between you and me, Elijah, hahahahahahahahahhaha!

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 9:20 AM | Report abuse

If Rivera didn't have an off-night (to which he's entitled -he's been terrific)the Nats would've won this game, largely because of Elijah Dukes. Also, Wright's fielding was miraculous and saved at least 3 runs. Well-played, a credible comeback effort, drama - well, this team is fun to watch and promises great things.

Posted by: flynnie | September 11, 2008 9:22 AM | Report abuse

Steven, your clue that Chico does not endorse these views is in the post title: "All the news that's fit to print -- and more"

As in, much of the news is not fit to print per the standards of New York's most famous newspaper.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 9:31 AM | Report abuse

"As for the bit with the fans, they aren't really people -- they're Mets stadium dwellers. He did NOTHING that is out of line for any visiting player in that stadium. He just let them know he was listening, and that they should feel free to bring it along with their pitcher."

He should have high-fived them.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Don't blow this out of proportion. Did Dukes overreact a little bit early on - probably.
But he still got back in there and ripped a double.
Then later when he did get hit, it was a 3-2 pitch and it was clear Pelfrey was upset with himself for the ball riding in and was scared he was about to be tossed from the game. I thought Dukes showed great understanding of the game in that situation to simply head down to first instead of reacting on what so many of you seem to think is some uncontrollable animal instinct the man has.
As for the crowd inciting, the easy thing to do there is for whichever coach he is listens to the most take him into the video room, show him what that looks like on TV and ask him - is this how you want to represent yourself and the Nationals? He'll get it. No need to preach down at him.

Posted by: Ryan | September 11, 2008 9:37 AM | Report abuse

The jury is very (VERY!) much out on his worth as a person, but last night I realized that I really (REALLY!) like having Elijah Dukes on my team.

You go, Elijah - just make sure you save your anger for opposing pitchers and fans and not the people actually in your life.

Hitting the crap out of the baseball is OK with me too.

Posted by: There - I said it | September 11, 2008 9:42 AM | Report abuse

(Shoot. Posted this to the old thread. Bringing it forward)

I don't mind Dukes showing a little bit of temper on an inside pitch. It doesn't hurt, if you're Dukes size, to remind the pitcher that you could kill him with your bare hands. Fear for him, arrogance for you. Good combination.

I did mind that garbage of blowing a kiss to the bench after the home run. A while back, I think it was Sutton who relayed a conversation that Kearns had with Milledge -- Kearns told Milledge that he was going to get one of his teammates killed if he kept showboating. Milledge said he didn't mind if pitchers threw at him, but he didn't want to get his teammates nailed, so he would tone it down.

Same thing with Dukes. It's lucky that Pedro wasn't pitching; the next batter probably would have drilled in the helmet. It's one thing if you're not afraid of retaliation, but you ought to have enough respect for your teammates not to put them in the position of getting targeted for your antics.

Posted by: joebleux | September 11, 2008 9:51 AM | Report abuse

I watched the entire game. Dukes may be volatile but he sure put a charge into the game and fired up his teammates. After watching Lopez dog it all year. it sure is fun to watch someone play baseball in Washington with such passion. If there is going to be an awakening of interest in baseball here it will be a guy like Dukes (even with his high maintainance) to do it. To me the highlight of each game is watching him bat. If he can get his act together he may actually make watching the Nationals a priority instead of an afterthought. I also think that the fans at Shea would love to have him on their team because he brings the same fire to the game that the NY fans already have. As a diehard Nationals fan I think he brings the very thing to elevate the play of his teammates. I for one will cheer him on until I see him him truely act ugly.

Posted by: Doug B | September 11, 2008 9:51 AM | Report abuse

This isn't really a big deal. The stuff with the fans? It's New York, some of the most obnoxious fans in the country. Good for him giving them the business. It didn't distract HIM. Dukes calmed himself down and ripped a double. Took getting hit in the 5th with no incident. Ripped another ball that Wright made a great play on.

It's a low bar, everybody expects the worst with Dukes - but it never escalated.

Posted by: prophet | September 11, 2008 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Grabbing your crotch is bush league. As is pounding your chest after a walk-off base on balls (Aug. 30 vs. Atlanta). As is a choreographed home run celebration that gets your (usually calm) manager angry (June 10 at Pittsburgh).

Imagine Cal Ripken pounding his chest or Darrell Green grabbing his crotch. They had class. Dukes doesn't.

Posted by: Section 420 | September 11, 2008 10:01 AM | Report abuse

What is the deal with 2 off days in the same week?

Posted by: prophet | September 11, 2008 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Elijah Dukes may well do the same thing for this Nationals team that Dexter Manley did for Joe Gibbs's Redskins in the 1980s, by playing a huge part in turning it into a winner on the field while also generating enough continuous controversy with peripheral antics that fall just short of cataclysm to keep even the non-sports portion of the population and media here paying attention to the team. Let's hope so, while simultaneously hoping that in the long run things turn out better for Elijah than they have for Dexter.

Posted by: 506's snark has a groin pull | September 11, 2008 10:06 AM | Report abuse

"Grabbing your crotch is bush league."

Yeah. Real major league players NEVER let their hand come anywhere near their crotch, especially when they're on camera.

Posted by: 'scuse me while I adjust myself | September 11, 2008 10:10 AM | Report abuse

I had no problem with Dukes reaction to things. The Mets pitchers were going after him and short of him hitting the pitcher with a line drive on purpose there really isn't much he could do. The umpire should have ejected Pelfrey for hitting him but they didn't. Dukes has been spectacular this year and has certainly proven that he belongs in the big leagues and I for one am glad that he was given a chance by the Nationals. He has all the tools to be an all-star and I have a feeling he'll show his appreciation to the Nationals in the long run for everything they have done for him.

Posted by: sandecker | September 11, 2008 10:14 AM | Report abuse

What is the deal with 2 off days in the same week?

Posted by: prophet | September 11, 2008 10:05 AM

The schedulemakers usually build in a couple extra off days in September to make room for makeups of rained-out games earlier in the season. If there aren't any excess rainouts, then the team gets a break.

Posted by: Eyewitness | September 11, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Here's my gripe with Harlan: If you are going to give Dukes so much ink, which I thin is inappropriate, but if you are, you have to get the facts right.

Harlan cherry-picked facts to make Dukes look worse than he is.

In the gamer he DIDN'T EVEN MENTION THAT DUKES WAS BEANED. How do you write an entire article about this stuff, and leave that out?

Then on the blog last night, he said that when Dukes was beaned that the ball brushed his jersey. Wrong. It hit him sqaure on the arm and probably hurt like heck.

Journalism is who, what, when, where. He had space for all these adjectives--"volatile," "looking for a fight," "wrestling-style," "trying to amp up the animosity," "downside," "turbulent," "aggressive" (twice), "glowered," "a fire to put out," "live wire," and "public enemy"--but he didn't have space for these basic nouns and verbs:

Pelfrey beaned Dukes. Dukes walked to first base.

The gamer was all about Harlan's perception of reality and very little about facts.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | September 11, 2008 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Steven, don't go activist on us. If you want to be really picky then you have to admit all journalists only write about their perception of reality and not the facts -- which can't even really be determined since our only experiences through the outside world are filtered through our senses in what we call perception. Who knows if blue looks the same to me as it does to you.

See where your nitpicking gets us? To philosophy nerd-dom.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Alumni news:

"Third baseman Felipe Lopez became Wednesday's author when his two errors, one mental and one physical, fed a rally that began with three consecutive hits but included two unmade plays to go with his miscues."

Heh.

Posted by: Capybara | September 11, 2008 10:33 AM | Report abuse

(from the St Louis Post-Dispatch)

Posted by: above | September 11, 2008 10:34 AM | Report abuse

SoCH: here's a fact for you: if Dukes hadn't made that bush-league gesture of blowing a kiss to the Mets' bench, none of the other things would have happened.

Posted by: joebleux | September 11, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

::bleeds profusely::

Posted by: SOCH's Heart | September 11, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

I wonder if the New York Post called their guy a knucklehead.

Mets reliever Ambiorix Burgos was arrested late Monday night on suspicion of beating and biting his girlfriend in a Queens hotel, the police said. According to a criminal complaint, Burgos threw the woman, Maria Lopez, against a wall and repeatedly slapped and punched her inside a Holiday Inn near Shea Stadium. The complaint, citing Lopez's account, said that she called 911 but declined to seek medical attention after sustaining a lump on her head and scratches on her back, arms and chest. Burgos was charged with one count of third-degree assault, punishable by up to one year in prison, and one count of second-degree harassment.

New York Times

At least Dukes agression is being left on the field for now. He deserves a break from the negativity. Any of these antics on a football field would be considered routine behavior. I don't get why baseball is supposed be "above" that, but yet it's okay or accepted that a pitcher can deliberately hit a guy to "retaliate".

Posted by: BofG | September 11, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

It's not like this is the first incident of a Nats batter jawing at a Mets pitcher. Remember a couple years ago when Pedro Martinez plunked something like SIX Nats batters on opening night?

Posted by: Juan-John | September 11, 2008 10:39 AM | Report abuse

Oh, and a second fact: if Dukes hadn't grossly overreacted to a pitch barely off the inside of the plate, none of the stuff that followed would have happened. So the situation is entirely created and exacerbated by Dukes, and you want to see the story focused around the one thing that he did right -- not overreacting to getting hit by pitch in a situation where it was clearly unintentional?

Posted by: joebleux | September 11, 2008 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Steve says:

"Then on the blog last night, he said that when Dukes was beaned that the ball brushed his jersey. Wrong. It hit him sqaure on the arm and probably hurt like heck."

Correct. After brushing his jersey, the ball then hit him square on the inside of his right arm, just above the elbow, causing the ball to deflect straight down, and Dukes to pull his arm off the bat in obvious discomfort. Were the replays not available in the booth, as they were to us watching on MASN?

Posted by: tomterp | September 11, 2008 10:46 AM | Report abuse

I remember.

Posted by: Jose Guillen | September 11, 2008 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Hey, sports fans! There's no Washington Nationals game tonight, and no game for that other team that plays with the pointy ball. What will you do? What *will* you do? One idea, go support the Potomac Nationals by watching them play Game 3 of the League Championship Series live at the Pfitz. All seats are $12 and include a belly buster meal at the bullpen picnic area. Game 4 (and Game 5 if necessary) will also take place at the Pfitz on Friday and Saturday. Start time is 7:05 for each game. Let's see if we can't put more than 812 cheeks (or is that 1624?) in the seats this time. Be there. Aloha.

Posted by: natsfan1a | September 11, 2008 11:09 AM | Report abuse

The NY Media is ridiculous, I am glad I don't have to read that kind of horse dung in the WaPost. What Dukes did may have or may have not been uncalled for, but one thing is for sure: he is an emotional player. I love his emotion and frankly he can do whatever he wants on the field as long as A.) he doesn't get ejected and B.) he continues to produce

Posted by: Nats703 | September 11, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

First of all, I would just like to remind the Constituency that Christian Guzman hit two home runs last night. That puts him at nine for the season, one away from his career high. He had three homers in the two-game series, and he's seven RBI away from his career high in that category.

I'd also like to remind you that the Nats lost their first series of the month, their 90th loss of the season. They're tied with San Diego for the worst record in baseball, they're eight games behind Atlanta for fourth place in the division, and they're ten games behind Baltimore in the bragging battle of the Beltway. They must win seven of their remaining 16 games to avoid the ignominy of a 100-loss season.

Finally, having watched the NY feed last night, I feel compelled to remind you that Ron Darling still has a job, and he's still terrible at it.

All of these should be bigger stories than Elijah's childish, but otherwise harmless behavior last night. I feel like I may have already said this on another blog, but this just serves as a distraction from the real issues.

Posted by: John in Mpls | September 11, 2008 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Give'em hell Elijah! You RULE!!

Posted by: Dawg | September 11, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

1625. Mine counts three.

Posted by: Dinner Bell Ray King | September 11, 2008 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Here is what I put to you, Nat's fans--Do you think that Zimmerman will ever be able to fire a team up like Dukes did last night? Elijah Dukes put everyone on notice that he will not go quietly into the good night. Don't get me wrong, Zimmerman will contribute a lot to this team, but I have not seen him as being able to carry this team when it is getting pummeled. Zim retreats into his inner shell when things go bad. I am not in the dugout but I sense that every set of eyeballs is riveted on Dukes when he comes to the plate. Some people on this team need to let Dukes continue to be what they are not. We have seen the "composure" of this team too often while in the midst of 8 game losing streaks when Dukes is not in the lineup.

Dukes is light years from the false bravado that I remember coming from the mouth of Paul LoDuca. He creates his own energy, some of which seems to rub off on his comrades. How rare a trait is that?

Dukes will be the catalyst that crosses over beyond the narrow confines of the DC baseball sports world. I am sure that in due time, Redskin fans, soccer fans and hockey fans will know who Dukes is. I bet that at home games fans will time their concession visits so as not to miss a Dukes' at bat. The Nats are fortunate to have this player, from the owners all the way down to bench jockeys.

Posted by: Dale | September 11, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

"Cut it out, Chico. If you hate Dukes so much that you want to call him a "hothead" and a "knucklehead" or drudge up irrelevant garbage from the past or write racist crap like this: "Elijah Dukes put both hands up in the air, but he wasn't dancing to any music and waving them like he just didn't care"--write it yourself and don't hide behind this passive aggressive, "ooo look I'm just passing along what these NY papers wrote."

He talked a little. No violence, no ejection, nothing that will last beyond the day. You want restraint, you got it. You want him to be some prissy white boy like Zimmerman who never shows an ounce of emotion, well that ain't him. But between the blog and the gamer, you're way over the top."

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | September 11, 2008 8:49 AM
------------------------------------------

Gotta love it when a guy will complain about Chico writing "racist crap" and then call Zimmerman "some prissy white boy" all in the same post. Well done!

Posted by: Capital Punisher | September 11, 2008 11:20 AM | Report abuse

As much as I hate the Post blog word wrap repeat bug, I kind of like the idea of calling our shortstop Christian Guzman Guzman.

He's hitting so well, we may as well say his name twice!

He's also two hits away from his career high in that category, and he has surpassed his career high in doubles. He's fourteen away from matching his highest mark in runs scored, and two total bases away from equaling his career high there.

Seriously, aside from the stolen bases, it's almost like we have the 2001 All-Star Guzman (who finished 16th in MVP voting, above Miguel Tejada, Torii Hunter, and Barry Zito, I might add).

Posted by: John in Mpls | September 11, 2008 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Steven, if you are going to repeat your rant about Chico, read it.

Repost (from last thread):
SoCH: Now, Steven, in your rush to defend Elijah, you mischaracterized Chico's article.

From the gamer: "When Dukes came to bat again in the fifth, a full-count pitch from Pelfrey brushed the inside of Dukes's jersey, sending him to first. He walked to first without incident. "

From Steven's 8:10 AM post: "Second, no mention *at all* of him getting beaned and walking away?"

I think most of the things you post defending Elijah deserve thought, even if I can't come to the same conclusion as you on a few of them. The Dukes line of the story was pretty significant, since the 4th inning incident caused a major delay. To the extent the NYM crowd will view him as a villain in the future, this will affect NYM / Nats games in the future (warning - Red Sox analogy - they and TB have been fighting for 8 years over some HBPs by Pedro and Ryan Rupe that have led to altercations and suspensions in the middle of the pennant race). It does deserve focus for that point alone. Also, as you know, anger management looks like the only thing that could prevent Elijah from being one of the best in game, so any time he goes a little bit off, or he demonstrates restraint, it will get mentioned.

Personally, I'd prefer take out slides and bunts close to the 1st base line (a la Jackie Robinson) as a way to get even, rather threatening an altercation. But, if Elijah's method ended up having Pelfrey give away the inside and get shelled, congrats to him for getting inside Pelfrey's head. Maybe Pelfrey is the one who does not have a head for the game.

Posted by: PTBNL | September 11, 2008 9:52 AM

Actually, I'd really like it if Elijah learned to bunt down the first base line so that when he's mad at a pitcher, he can legitimately deck him when he fields it in the base path. That's old school, but effective, especially when you are 245 lbs. Kind of like LMillz decking Utley last week. I really prefer the old school when it comes to revenge.

Posted by: PTBNL | September 11, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

And Guzman has not gone unnoticed by me either. I remember a lot of bloggers casting Guzman on the shortstop scrap heap at the beginning of the season and continuing their sniping all the way through. All of the hitters played well last night, even Milledge was scalding the ball although his hits became line drive outs.

Cough, Cough! Manny, wake up and stick someone else in the closer position, (or have you not noticed that Hanrahan has been completely sucky the last outings?) Shell and Mock have been doing much better if you are looking for someone who actually gets 3 outs in an inning.

Posted by: Dale | September 11, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

I'm with ya, John and Dale - GUUZZZ!! (the piling on extended back farther than this season and it's nice to see him getting some love after years of jeers).

Posted by: natsfan1a | September 11, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

"I remember a lot of bloggers casting Guzman on the shortstop scrap heap at the beginning of the season...."

ME! That was me! But I didn't continue all the way through. What can I say, it seemed like a reasonable conclusion at the time based on his performance history and typical trends of aging ball-players. Tell your statistics to shut-up!

On the other hand, I was right about Nick Johnson. I guess we still do have to play the games, since my predictive powers are, at best, 50-50.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

"In the gamer he DIDN'T EVEN MENTION THAT DUKES WAS BEANED."

Dukes wasn't beaned, he was hit by a pitch. Tony Conigliaro was beaned.

Posted by: beaned = hit in the head by a pitch | September 11, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Good point about Shell. I've really been getting a good feeling about the guy recently (which probably means he'll implode spectacularly sometime in the middle of next season), and I like him in a long or early relief role.

Mock I see as a good setup guy who could go two innings if you need him. For a converted starter, he seems to possess a durability and willingness to take the ball on consecutive nights, and that's exactly the kind of thing you want from someone who will step into Rauch's old role.

I think the bullpen rebuild is intriguing. There are certainly some question marks, but some of the early results are promising. I'm honestly not sure that Bergmann fits there at this point, so it's looking like it's starter-or-bust for him next season.

Throw in Wagner as a sixth- or seventh-inning possibility, Hinckley as your LOOGY, and the spots are getting slimmer. If Chief is signed and healthy, what do you do with Hanrahan? Does he have any trade value?

I also think O'Connor and Chico might wind up competing with Hinkley for the LOOGY roll next Spring. I don't think the front office sees either as a major league option as a starter, so a bullpen role is their only way to contribute in the bigs.

Is it wrong to wish away the last weeks of the sason and hope for March to come early?

Posted by: John in Mpls | September 11, 2008 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Tony Conigliaro wasn't beaned, Jeremy Bentham was beaned.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/5p3rpf

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Seriously, Guzman should do ads for Lasik.

"It made me an all-star again."

I'm even thinking about it at this point, and my job doesn't involve any hand-eye coordination.

-----

ME! That was me! But I didn't continue all the way through. What can I say, it seemed like a reasonable conclusion at the time based on his performance history and typical trends of aging ball-players. Tell your statistics to shut-up!

Posted by: John in Mpls | September 11, 2008 11:49 AM | Report abuse

Not wrong, John, but as for me I never want the baseball season to end. I'll be wistful as usual when this one is over. I do love my baseball and my Nats. Sigh. But it ain't over 'til it's over.

Posted by: natsfan1a | September 11, 2008 11:51 AM | Report abuse

That's one of the worst things I've ever seen in my life.

-----

Tony Conigliaro wasn't beaned, Jeremy Bentham was beaned.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/5p3rpf

Posted by: John in Mpls | September 11, 2008 11:51 AM | Report abuse

That's one of the worst things I've ever seen in my life.

-----

Tony Conigliaro wasn't beaned, Jeremy Bentham was beaned.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/5p3rpf

Posted by: John in Mpls | September 11, 2008 11:51 AM

Posted by: Check the date | September 11, 2008 11:57 AM | Report abuse

"Correct. After brushing his jersey, the ball then hit him square on the inside of his right arm, just above the elbow, causing the ball to deflect straight down, and Dukes to pull his arm off the bat in obvious discomfort."

Posted by: That, my friends, is one MAGIC loogy. | September 11, 2008 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Here's Hanrahan's record as closer:
http://www.baseball-reference.com/pi/gl.cgi?share=1&n1=hanrajo01&year=2008&t=p#60:77:sum

It's mediocre, certainly not what you would want from a closer. He only gave up runs in 6 of his 18 appearances since getting the job, only one of which was a save situation.

Oddly enough, B-R lists his only blown save (not counting the "blown win" a BS that was won in extra innings) as having no runs or earned runs. That's got to be a mistake, right?

The team's record in his six games? 4-2. The two losses they were already losing (last night and 8/10 in Milwaukee) and of the four wins, only two were save situations.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Solved it! Hanrahan was brought in and gave up a hit that scored the runs to tie the game, even though none of the runs were charged to him. But the blown save was. Hooray, baseball!

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

I LOVE elijah dukes. I've always been a big fan of fiery players...like brett and will clark and even to some extent jose guillen. But I've never seen anyone who plays the game like dukes. I know he rubs a lot of people the wrong way, but his passion is undeniable.

Posted by: .390 | September 11, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Way to call SOCH on his inconsistencies regarding racism. I always love anonymous prissy white boys labeling other people the same way. His posts will always be reflective of the fact that Chico or Barry or whoever has this job, and SOCH does not and he's bitter, although he's good for himself, just a kid for Wisconsin, with his dreams to get some attention. Remember the brilliant post he had where he suggested things for Barry, who had a day off, to write? What a guy...

Posted by: nattily we roll | September 11, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

506,

Hanrahan has in the last four appearances given up 7 hits, 4 walks and 6 earned runs. Yikes! Methinks he needs some adjustment.

Posted by: dale | September 11, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

elijah dukes is clearly the best thing the nats have going for them right now.

i remember griffey grabbing his crotch as he rounded third for sparky anderson. he must have been about 23 at the time.

torii hunter and pudge are getting suspended in a most respectabe for slapping each other:

"I figured it would be like a game, but two? I didn't expect that," Hunter said. "You do the crime, you got to do the time. This ain't really trouble. It's just being competitive on the field."

Rodriguez said he's been in fights before but had never been suspended.

"That was just part of the game," he said. "It was just two players that love to play the game, that play the game hard and it happens. I'll just take it now, so I can be ready Saturday."

just stay on the field and produce.

Posted by: longterm | September 11, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Dukes brings fire and passion to his game, I love it! I hope DC fans rally around their boy who has made a great turn in his life.

Someone help our bullpen...yikes! Although you gotta love Shell.

Posted by: G-town | September 11, 2008 12:45 PM | Report abuse

hey chico, i've never commented on the writing but that is a weak article today. i'm afraid the associated press has more to say (with accurate details, to boot) than the home team paper.

is the paper getting lazy cause they think no one is watching?

zimmerman should hit 5th or 2nd. hit dukes 3rd. (teixiera 4th).

Posted by: longterm | September 11, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Great discussion on the Dukes affair today. As someone who probably falls into either the "Old School" or "Prissy White Boy" camp, depending on your sociological leanings, I have mixed feelings. Agree with Dale that the club needs Elijah's energy and that he is the best chance for the Nats to develop an avid following beyond the present small hard core. But along with PTBNL would like to see Elijah use bunts along the 1B line as his preferred mode of communication with opposing teams and their fans. Of course, hitting doubles after brushback pitches ain't too bad either--just ask FRobby.

Posted by: CapPeterson | September 11, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Eff NY and their provincial, holier-than-thou BS. Such an overrated area with awful people. Real talk.

Posted by: Screw NY | September 11, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

The paper that landed on my stoop this morning didn't mention Dukes's HBP. Maybe they updated the story for the website, which is good.

But even what's posted on line now is wrong. The pitch didn't brush his jersey. It hit him square on the arm.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | September 11, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who was offended by my characterization of Zimmerman as a prissy white boy, I apologize. I think there's a big difference between that and Dukes's treatment by the media, but I don't think we need to get into that. So I'll just take it back. Poor choice of words on a sensitive topic.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | September 11, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who says that Ryan Zimmerman doesn't show emotion has lost all credibility. He shows emotion on every play. Do you watch any games Stephen? Or do you just consider it to be emotion when a guy goes over the top for no apparent reason?

As I stated in the last thread, I think Kendrick deliberately injuring Zimmerman in July, throwing at his head on Sept. 1, and Utley deliberately injuring Flores on Sept. 2 all merits more attention from the team and the media than Dukes and his actions. Brushing a guy back by throwing an inside pitch at his belly, as Pelfrey did, after Dukes blowing the Mets bench a kiss, is part of the game. Throwing a fastball at Ryan Zimmerman's skull is not part of the game.

Posted by: Ray | September 11, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

I love the discussion this morning, people! Just shows what Dukes brings to the table. I hope he stays healthy and out of real trouble. The run production this last month or so has been great - too bad it's not coinciding with good pitching. Gives me hope for next year!

On another note: Can some one define LOOGY for me?

Posted by: Patty | September 11, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

One more thing for Chico - could you guys please keep us informed of how the playoffs are going for the PNats? Natsfan1a does a pretty good job, and I think it may have been mentioned breifly in a Notebook, but it would be nice to have an article in the actual newspaper. :)

Posted by: Patty | September 11, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Lefty One-Out Guy.
http://tinyurl.com/6b6ueu

Posted by: you could look it up | September 11, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Thank you - yes, I supposed I could have just googled it.

Posted by: Patty | September 11, 2008 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Though it never made The New York Times, in the Daily News the caption read:

Posted by: It's not as if it were a real newspaper | September 11, 2008 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Ummmm ... who wants to tell him?

**************
is the paper getting lazy cause they think no one is watching?
Posted by: longterm | September 11, 2008 12:52 PM

Posted by: The Magnificent 9K | September 11, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

"it would be nice to have an article in the actual newspaper."

Speaking of articles in the actual newspaper, all of this Dukes hoopla has distracted me from mentioning the absolutely stellar job Barry Svrluga did on the Redskins beat this morning. It easily outpaced Boswell's rather pedestrian column, his first since his recent trip to China to be deprogrammed from his earlier all-obsessive Gibbsology.

Posted by: did you see it? | September 11, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Can we put this to bed, please? NO ONE who was on the field thinks this. Not Flores, not Utley. He plays hard, so do a lot of guys, and Flores said his spikes got caught, because he wasn't expecting contact.
I'd have drilled him anyway, just on principle, but it wasn't on purpose.

***************
Utley deliberately injuring Flores on Sept. 2 ...
Posted by: Ray | September 11, 2008 1:26 PM

Posted by: ce | September 11, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

and I don't know how old Barry S. is, but I'm sure he'll be writing for a long time to come, inshallah.

SO CAN WE PLEASE let him do it in peace, and quit sucking up in here?

Posted by: CE | September 11, 2008 1:59 PM | Report abuse

@Ray--

I agree Zimmerman shows emotion, just in a different way. While I risk getting stuck in the thicket of a sensitive topic again, I think there's a racial element to that.

The level of celebration that's considered excessive by one set of people would be considered good showmanship by the other. I think a lot more black folks than white folks would say that the "blown kiss" was showmanship versus showboating.

I have my personal standard for what good sportsmanship, and I promise it's about as prissy as it gets. I posted earlier this year that I don't like it when fans boo the throw over. Now THAT'S prissy.

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | September 11, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

For the record, put me down as having no problem at all with Dukes barking at Pelfrey, which may well have been calculated intimidation, and not a temper. The only regret is that he only hit a double, but that still made the point.

And if this were Michael Barrett instead of Dukes, I'm sure the press coverage would be exactly the same. Sure it would. And I've got a Plan for sale, while you're at it.

Posted by: ce | September 11, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

CE, nobody on the team SAID they thought it was dirty, but if they didn't, would they have sought retribution the next day?

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and the blown kiss? Love it. Baseball needs more.

Posted by: ce | September 11, 2008 2:12 PM | Report abuse

when was the last time a gamer was about the game?

Posted by: longterm | September 11, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Sure. I would have. My Cubs-fan wife, who was sitting next to me in S. 320 that game, probably would. Milledge very properly got a Standing O for taking Utley out at second the next night.
It doesn't have to have been on purpose for retaliation to have a deterrent effect.
Fear and arrogance, remember.

*********
CE, nobody on the team SAID they thought it was dirty, but if they didn't, would they have sought retribution the next day?

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 2:11 PM

Posted by: ce | September 11, 2008 2:15 PM | Report abuse

"fear and ignorance." got it.

Posted by: longterm | September 11, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Wow! Getting close to 100 responses.

This Elijah fella sure does elicit a response. All the press and bloggers are on the story. Love him, hate him, you can't ignore him.

Mental game, baseball. Looks like Duke is winning.

Posted by: Natty Dread | September 11, 2008 2:24 PM | Report abuse

you can't ignore him and he's not even wearing lipstick. yes, i just ruined it for everyone.

Posted by: longterm | September 11, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

I'd also love to see a WaPo P-Nats story, Patty (the best of five series is currently tied up at 1-1, BTW). In the meantime, here are a couple of sites that are good sources of game notes and stories (not sure whether or not you might be aware of them already):

http://potomac.nationals.milb.com/index.jsp?sid=t436

http://www.oursportscentral.com/services/releases/?id=3716793

Posted by: natsfan1a | September 11, 2008 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, nobody ever calls me out for my bad behavior. And who are you calling prissy?

Posted by: NR A.J. Pierzynski | September 11, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

he he. Some of us think that's actually BARRY doing the "sucking up."

**********************
SO CAN WE PLEASE let him do it in peace, and quit sucking up in here?

Posted by: CE | September 11, 2008 1:59 PM

Posted by: NatsNut | September 11, 2008 2:34 PM | Report abuse

This one's for all of you who think the Nats' medical/training staff is part of the cause of all the injuries this year. Wouldn't it be nice if we invested in a state-of-the-art system like the Red Sox did with Dr. Andrews?

http://tinyurl.com/5o8lgn

"Adhering to the baseball adage that pitching wins games, the Red Sox have spent more than $43 million this season on Papelbon and other enviable arms. The team has been keenly aware of another adage as well: Pitching is a game of attrition. Over the grueling 162-game season, bending the arm way back and accelerating it forward, the fastest recorded human motion, is hard on shoulders and elbows. In fact, pitchers make up half of major-league rosters yet account for 7 in 10 injuries. To protect and maximize its investments, Boston has adopted a startlingly different approach. It originated off the field, 1,176 miles from Fenway Park, in the operating room of Dr. James Andrews, a groundbreaking orthopedic surgeon in Alabama. The idea is this: Prevent injuries by predicting them. The program, which Boston guards closely as a competitive advantage, is built upon a multitude of biomechanical breakthroughs from Andrews's practice. Sox pitching coach John Farrell, rehabilitation coordinator Mike Reinold, and their staff apply science to a realm long defined by hunches. "Instead of saying, 'He looks tight' or 'He looks loose,' we measure everything," says Reinold, who joined Boston in 2007 after eight years with Andrews. He and Farrell prescribe each pitcher a customized routine based on quantifying strength, fatigue, and flexibility; Papelbon and starter Josh Beckett focus on different muscles, because their bodies and pitching mechanics differ. Much like the Moneyball strategy employed by Oakland Athletics general manager Billy Beane, in which teams comb through unusual stats to better evaluate undeveloped talent, the Red Sox hope that Andrews's brand of unconventional testing will crack the mystery of injuries."

Posted by: Scott in Shaw | September 11, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

I'm lookin' at you, A.J.

Posted by: NR Michael Barrett | September 11, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

I'm lookin' at you, Barrett.

Posted by: NR Carlos Zambrano | September 11, 2008 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Didn't mean to dis Nationals Farm Authority by not including a link to it as a source of P-Nats info (I tend to go straight to the team site for my news):

http://farmauthority.dcsportsnet.com/

Posted by: natsfan1a | September 11, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Good posts, SoCH and Scott in Shaw.

Uhh, do we even have a "rehabilitation coordinator"?

Posted by: CapPeterson | September 11, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

I nominate Odalis Perez for Retaliation Coordinator!

Oh...."rehabilitation"...never mind...

Posted by: joebleux | September 11, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

As long as we are in the lipstick on a pig mode, I'm curious which of the hopeful signs do people think simply mask a weakness and which do people think are true signs of progress. I'll throw out a few, and people can add:

1) Nats were 7th in the NL in runs and OBP in August, 2d and 3d so far in September.

2) The AG and Anderson Hernandez have been getting on at a high rate since they were acquired.

3) Milledge having an OBP of .348 since the all star break.

4) Lannan, Redding, Balester, and Bergmann were terrific until they weren't.

5) Face of the Franchise .318/.381/.471 since the All-star break.

6) Mock, Hinckley, and Shell have been effective as major league middle relievers & set-up pitchers.

I'll go with 2 and 6 as lipstick and 1 as just something that keeps Flynnie conversant.

Posted by: PTBNL | September 11, 2008 3:09 PM | Report abuse

When searching to find how many Red Sox were on the DL this year (still looking) to evaluate doctor Andrew's approach, I found this from April 2008:

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/baseball/2008-04-09-injured-players_N.htm

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Hilarious, PTBNL! Accurate, too, I think.

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

"he he. Some of us think that's actually BARRY doing the "sucking up."

**********************
SO CAN WE PLEASE let him do it in peace, and quit sucking up in here?

Posted by: CE | September 11, 2008 1:59 PM

Posted by: NatsNut | September 11, 2008 2:34 PM "

Some of you are seriously deluded, then. Not that that's any surprise around here.

Posted by: did you see it? | September 11, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

The P-Nats series is 1 - 1? Who's ahead?

Posted by: 537 | September 11, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Post of the day, PTBNL.

By the way, Pelfrey wasn't just telling "Dude" at Dukes. He did, however, wait until there were people between him and Dukes before doing so.

Also, to keep with the lipsticked pig theme, you can put a moustache on Schoeneweis, but it doesn't make him Rollie Fingers.

Posted by: John in Mpls | September 11, 2008 3:33 PM | Report abuse

I say we permit any bush league gesture by any Nat following a play that generates a walk off win.

Posted by: Arkymark | September 11, 2008 3:39 PM | Report abuse

#2 may really be lipstick but let's enjoy the moment, shall we? It's been a long time (maybe since Jamie Carroll?) that we've had utility MIs who've actually been useful.

Posted by: CapPeterson | September 11, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

When we've talked about the Nats medical program, I've kind of pushed the comparative angle to other teams in part because I had read some pretty sophisticated stuff Evil Empire #4. They do a lot of stuff labelled "proprietary" but what gets reported indicates they take physical evaluations to an extreme. This article discusses the diet they put Michael Bowden on. He's a 21 year old who went from AA to a major league start this year. They've shut him down because he hit his 150 inning target. They are pretty rigid about innings targets and not burning out arms. I don't think they have had a pitching prospect have major surgery for an arm injury in several years. By comparison, the Nats seem to operate with Theodoric of York, medieval barber, as their adviser.

http://www.boston.com/sports/baseball/redsox/articles/2008/02/29/eating_it_up/

Posted by: PTBNL | September 11, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for all the P-Nats links, 1a!

Posted by: Patty | September 11, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

You're most welcome, Patty!

537, (assuming that you were serious) the series is tied at 1-1 and one of the teams needs to win 3 of 5 games to clinch the title.

Posted by: natsfan1a | September 11, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

"By comparison, the Nats seem to operate with Theodoric of York, medieval barber, as their adviser."

You know how Don Sutton is always saying "Get 'em on, get 'em over, get 'em in"? Building a team is the same type of progressive sequence. Get good players, get 'em playing, keep 'em playing. In this context, going all state of the art on a medical program to keep a staff full of Jesus Colomes playing is the definition of putting lipstick on a pig. The Washington Nationals ain't the Boston Red Sox (yet). Deal with it.

Posted by: 506's snark has a groin pull | September 11, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Nats being dropped from 107.7 to AM1500 starting next week. Looks like the radio numbers will continue to tank since 1500 is almost impossible to hear in most of the area. What in the world is going on with this franchise?

Posted by: tippy canoe | September 11, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

I was wondering the same thing, tippy. Very disappointing news given my lack of success with the 1500 signal in the past.

Posted by: natsfan1a | September 11, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

from dcrtv: "More: Bonneville's Changes On 1500, 1050, 820, 107.7 - 9/11 - DCRTV already told you all of this. Now, Radio And Records gives us its version: Monday, 9/15, will bring the start of several previously announced programming changes at Bonneville's Washington stations. Here's the latest timetable: Starting on Monday, WFED, Federal News Radio, will broadcast full-time on both 1500 AM and 820 AM. Meanwhile, a loop of promotional announcements will begin running on WFED's previous signal, 1050 AM, to help listeners make the move to the new signals. After the loop runs for two weeks, 1050 will begin simulcasting news WTOP full-time, except for a few sports conflicts. Wednesday, 9/17, will be the last Washington Nationals broadcast on the 107.7 FM frequency. Going forward the team will be heard on WFED. Finally, starting on Thursday, 9/18, WTOP will be a 100 percent simulcast on 103.5 FM, 103.9 FM, and 107.7 FM so that the station can receive full Arbitron credit....."

This is obviously a Bonneville decision - since WTOP is their cash cow, and 107.7 now simulcasts WTOP, this is a ratings-based decision. I'm very disappointed. How many stupid stations do we need for traffic and weather? I'm assuming this move also affects the Caps and the college sports that the now-defunct 3WT used to carry. Bad move.

Posted by: BSG | September 11, 2008 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Don't they have something like, oh, a contract to broadcast the Nats? How does this happen?

Posted by: Section 506 (Before moving) | September 11, 2008 6:23 PM | Report abuse

506: I'd like to know the same thing. Maybe Chico can find something out...

Posted by: BSG | September 11, 2008 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Here's a guy going way way more ape shoot that Dukes on a pitch way way more obviously not thrown at him.

http://tinyurl.com/3l4fac

Posted by: Steven on Capitol Hill | September 11, 2008 7:36 PM | Report abuse

I wish I were there, but the P-Nats are at least winning 4-2 in the bottom of the 4th. Michael Martinez has a homer and 2 RBIs, and my man Andrew Lefave (got him for Ray King), hsa the other 2. Ross (I'm not Aaron Crow, thank you) Detwiler is pitching and winning.

Posted by: Positively Half St. | September 11, 2008 8:26 PM | Report abuse

I *was* there, PHS, and it was one heck of a comeback win for the P-Nats. They were down by three in the 9th but tied it up, then scored in the 10th with a walk-off walk. According to the box score, the attendance was 1373, a considerably higher COS (cheeks on seats) number than in the division series. Atta team, P-Nats! Atta boys and girls, Nats fans! The P-Nats could clinch with a win tomorrow.

Posted by: natsfan1a | September 11, 2008 11:37 PM | Report abuse

I'm a little late to the party, but here's my thoughts. I already said some time ago that Dukes is a future All-Star, and that his ceiling might be even higher than that, if he can hold it together. It's clear he has enormous talent, and enormous impulse-control issues. His conduct might be somewhat amusing, but it is also not really defensible -- other than to acknowledge the obvious: that his behavior can be outside his control.

Posted by: Fisch Fry | September 12, 2008 12:14 AM | Report abuse

For human being as large as Dukes to get out of control is a real problem. I want to see him succeed in a big way, but honestly, if we weren't Nats fans, we'd know he should have been ejected for his unprovoked outburst. Yes, the Nats came back, but do we really believe that Dukes' behavior is why?

Posted by: let's get real | September 12, 2008 2:45 AM | Report abuse

Good gamer here:

http://www.insidenova.com/isn/sports/minors/potomac_nationals/article/high_flying_finish_at_the_pftiz/21076/

Posted by: natsfan1a | September 12, 2008 6:41 AM | Report abuse

Awesome column, Boz. LOVED it.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/09/11/AR2008091103344.html?hpid=sec-sports

(tin yurl isn't working)

Posted by: NatsNut | September 12, 2008 7:00 AM | Report abuse

Boz can be persuasive at times. I would love to know what Kasten has said to Dukes in the last 24 hours. I imagine that after Wednesday's game Kasten himself would get personally involved because of what is at risk. I am still 90% on Dukes side, but 10% of me is seeing the more sober ramifications of what he did. Yet, it is still not on the level of the Utley play on Flores because Dukes did not hurt anybody. I wonder how many pitchers truly want to start brushing back Mr. Dukes as a way to earn their living? I wouldn't.

Posted by: Dale | September 12, 2008 7:46 AM | Report abuse

I agree, NatsNut.

Also, new post - now with P-Nats update. :-)

Posted by: natsfan1a | September 12, 2008 8:12 AM | Report abuse

I don't agree. I think he knows exactly what he's doing. His judgement may be debatable, but he is in control.

That said, it's easy to lose sight of boundaries when you play that close to them.

********************
I'm a little late to the party, but here's my thoughts. I already said some time ago that Dukes is a future All-Star, and that his ceiling might be even higher than that, if he can hold it together. It's clear he has enormous talent, and enormous impulse-control issues. His conduct might be somewhat amusing, but it is also not really defensible -- other than to acknowledge the obvious: that his behavior can be outside his control.

Posted by: Fisch Fry | September 12, 2008 12:14 AM
-------------------
For human being as large as Dukes to get out of control is a real problem. I want to see him succeed in a big way, but honestly, if we weren't Nats fans, we'd know he should have been ejected for his unprovoked outburst. Yes, the Nats came back, but do we really believe that Dukes' behavior is why?

Posted by: let's get real | September 12, 2008 2:45 AM

Posted by: ce | September 12, 2008 8:55 AM | Report abuse

I'm still waiting for the post from Svrgula recanting every unkind thing he wrote about Guzman for 2 out of 3 years. Should I hold my breath? Terms such as washed up, bust, mistake seem to come to mind....

Posted by: Oh Barry? | September 12, 2008 10:39 AM | Report abuse

I think pitchers should throw inside often. Get these hitters back off the plate and re-establish that low, outside strike as an out pitch. I'm so tired of this mindset that the hitters get offended if the pitchers come inside, like they have a right to crowd the plate.

Back off jack! The hitters are not allowed to reduce the inside pitch ball zone to 2 inches and fume if something comes close to them. I think these hitters should be tossed for charging the mound or demonstrating unsportsman-like conduct at the plate. Enough of this stepping out on the pitcher too.

Pitchers rule. The strike zone belongs to them, not the hitter.

As for Dukes - his antics amount to nothing but hot air - reminds me of the Anna Nicole coverage. Does any of this really matter? Yippie skippie. He's bush league - and actions speak louder than words.

Posted by: Pitch inside | September 12, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company