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Stammen in July, Lineups

Craig Stammen goes for the Nats on Monday evening. Overall, the guy is 3-5 with a 4.14 ERA, nothing eye-catching, but over the last four starts, he's sustained a considerable run of success. His innings pitched in those four starts: 7.0, 9.0, 6.0, 7.1. His earned runs in those four starts: 1, 2, 3, 1. There's no real science to measure the flukiness -- or legitimacy -- of a one-month run like Stammen's, except to line it up with those who've performed similarly.

Stammen's numbers since July 1: 2-2, 29.1 IP, 2.15 ERA.

Here's what I've got...

* Since July 1, 32 qualifying starting pitchers have ERAs under 3.00. Of that list, only about four or five names don't immediately register as top-of-the-line pitchers. Here's the full list of ERA leaders in July, in order: Wandy Rodriguez, Clayton Kershaw, Joe Blanton, Matt Cain, Joel Pineiro, Brett Anderson, Adam Wainwright, Jarrod Washburn, Chris Carpenter, Jon Lester, Dan Haren, Jair Jurrjens, Scott Feldman, Felix Hernandez, Craig Stammen, Johan Santana, Justin Verlander, Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt, Zack Greinke, Jorge De La Rosa, David Hernandez, John Lannan, Jon Garland, Javier Vazquez, Tim Lincecum, Randy Wolf, Roy Halladay, J.A. Happ, Carlos Zambrano, Edwin Jackson, John Lackey.

* One key to Stammen's success: He's walking almost nobody. In those four starts, he's walked a total of five batters. Since July 1, 71 pitchers in baseball have thrown 25 or more innings. Only 17 of those pitchers, Stammen among them, have walked five or fewer during that span. (Incidentally, John Lannan, who has walked just four in 36 2/3 innings since July, is the only pitcher among those 71 without double-digit strikeouts. He has eight Ks in his last five starts ... and a 2.70 ERA during that stretch.)

Now, the lineups for the series opener here at Miller Park:

Washington

Morgan - 8
Guzman - 6
Zimmerman - 5
Dunn - 7
Johnson - 3
Willingham - 9
Bard - 2
Gonzalez - 4
Stammen - 1

Milwaukee

Lopez - 4
Counsell - 5
Braun - 7
Fielder - 3
Cameron - 8
Hart - 9
Hardy - 6
Kendall - 2
Suppan - 1

By Chico Harlan  |  July 27, 2009; 4:01 PM ET
 
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Next: No Strikeouts, All Success

Comments

Hmmmmm,

okay, so why wouldn't it make sense to keep switch-hitting Guzman at short, while developing Alberto Gonzalez in the majors ... and Desmond (he looks just about ready for MLB experience) and Espinosa in the minors?

Unless associated players involved in any trade provide the same sort of value to the team that Morgan and Burnett provide? What would make Burruss more valuable under the current circumstances?

In other words, if you are going to put the emphasis on acquiring talent born as close to the median of 1988 as possible ... don't you have to put that talent on the field at some point?

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

@Chico --

please make sure that whenever you post something positive about a National that you either preface it or end it with a "knock wood".

Bob Carpenter has a tendency to blurt out information like "Lannan hasn't given up a home run in 952 innings" and almost always the next pitch is hit out of the park. That man is the biggest jinx on this team. Please do not emulate him.

*KNOCK WOOD*

Posted by: erocks33 | July 27, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse

What would make Burriss more valuable is if he learned to hit. Anderson Hernandez has been poor at 2b, with a VORP of -4.0 (meaning his bat cost the Nats four runs so far this season over what they could have expected from a league-average 2b). There are only 9 2b with a lower (i.e., more negative) VORP, including (unfortunately) Belliard (-8.3) and Burriss (-8.4). So if you've liked Belliard at the plate this year, you'll love Burriss. Yecch.

Posted by: TomServo | July 27, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Point of information.

What is the median of 1988?

Posted by: leetee1955 | July 27, 2009 4:24 PM | Report abuse

1988: The "median" birth year for prospects that Rizzo appears to be aiming for ... fewer fresh HS grads, more college.

So, a player who is not a proven major leaguer born in 1984 might no longer be considered a prospect. Possibly a failure?

A player born in 1990 or later might be considered high risk, lots of potential/tools but without any significant playing experience.

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

If you use the same criteria for comparison ... comparing the current pitching staff for July against earlier in the season ... maybe you wouldn't have to knock-on-wood?

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse

What is the median of 1988?

Posted by: leetee1955 | July 27, 2009 4:24 PM |


Was wondering the same. Maybe its slang for "Skip this post and read the next".

Posted by: LosDoceOcho | July 27, 2009 4:36 PM | Report abuse

With the trading deadline quickly approaching, I think the only guy we really need to move is Johnson. Willingham is one of the best values in all of baseball, and Dunn gives you something (40 hrs) that are hard to come by, so I hope we keep them both.

Looking at next year's lineup I see this:

1 Morgan CF
2 ?
3 Zimmerman 3b
4 Dunn 1b
5 Willingham Lf
6 ?
7 Flores C
8 Guzman 2b

Guzzie's contract means he's going to be a Nat whether we like it or not. But if he's moved to 2B and the 8 hole, I think he can be a solid contributor. His range will be good for 2B, and his lack of walks won't hurt in the 8 spot with the pitcher coming up next. So we need a SS and a RF heading into next year. The rotation is probably ok as is (if we add Strasburg to the mix), but the bullpen will need to be rebuilt from scratch, with the expection of Clippard and Burnett (and maybe Storen).

In other words, there is a lot of work to be done before next spring so I hope we can move Johnson and Beimel to help out.

I'd love to pry Escobar away from Atlanta to fill the hole at SS, but that's a pipe dream.

Posted by: sec307 | July 27, 2009 4:50 PM | Report abuse

The difficulty in trading Johnson and Beimel is both will be, as of now, type B free agents. The Nats will receive a supplemental first rounder if both/either sign with another team during the off season.

So do the Nats hold out for first round trade value in return for either player and hope that both maintain Type B status if neither are traded? Or take the best offer for both even if less than a first rounder in value?

Posted by: LosDoceOcho | July 27, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse

1 Desmond SS (set records for SB's)? RHH
2 Morgan CF LHH
3 Zimmerman 3b RHH
4 Dunn/Willingham? lf LHH
5 Johnson?/Dunn? 1B LHH
6 ? rf
7 Flores/Bard C R/LHH
8 Guzman? 2b R/LHH

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:00 PM | Report abuse

So, a team that loses more than 100 games in two straight years doesn't do anything other than add a totally unproven player at SS, move another guy to a position he's never played on a regular basis and adds a RF, and they get significantly better? Who's going to be the new RF'er, Babe Ruth?
Are we talking about the same team I've been watching for the last two years?

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

I too like the idea of keeping Willingham. He's relatively young, under team control, not vastly overpaid, and HE PERFORMS. At least he always has when given a chance. I for one do not understand all the knocks he takes for his defense. He's not the fastest OF, nor does he have a killer arm. But his range is decent and he tries hard (witness his dive attempt yesterday). He does get to most balls and doesn't drop them. His transition to RF has been better than anyone expected, and he flat out hits. If he had been an every day starter from day 1, he'd be on pace for 37 HRs and 80+ RBI. What's the problem?

Posted by: cdstej | July 27, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

ian desmond was born in 1985. does this pertain to him? wouldn't he lean more towards being a "failure" by your reasoning since he's not a proven major leaguer?
*******************************************
1988: The "median" birth year for prospects that Rizzo appears to be aiming for ... fewer fresh HS grads, more college.

So, a player who is not a proven major leaguer born in 1984 might no longer be considered a prospect. Possibly a failure?

A player born in 1990 or later might be considered high risk, lots of potential/tools but without any significant playing experience.

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: surly_w | July 27, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

1 Desmond SS (set records for SB's)? RHH
2 Morgan CF LHH
3 Zimmerman 3b RHH
4 Dunn/Willingham? lf LHH
5 Johnson?/Dunn? 1B LHH
6 ? rf
7 Flores/Bard C R/LHH
8 Guzman? 2b R/LHH

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:00 PM | Report abuse


It will be Elijah Dukes in the 5 hole playing right, and Willingham batting 6th in left. And thats a darn good lineup.

Posted by: kingtutts | July 27, 2009 5:12 PM | Report abuse

LosDoceOcho, you don't think a AAA player or a guy who already has minimal major league experience is more valuable than a supplemental first round pick? I'd rather have guys who've made it through the minors and are ready for a real chance in the big leagues than hope you get lucky with your first round picks. Go back and look at the Nats/Expos list of #1 picks. The Nats have had 12 picks since 2000 and exactly one of those guys (Ryan Zimmerman) is now in the big leagues, two, maybe three others might get there again (Bray, Cordero and Detweiler) and there are about four guys in the minors with a shot (Marrero, Crow, Storen, Strasburg?). Do you really like those odds?

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Dukes? Well, I feel better now...

We basically have that lineup now. And the last time I checked, the Nats are in last place. Again.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 5:16 PM | Report abuse

So Peri,

If I'm reading this correctly, you've got Desmond penciled in the 2010 lineup batting lead off and possibly setting a Nats stolen base record.

That's a tad bit of reach on a Nats minor league prospect, even for you, don't ya think?

Posted by: Section505203 | July 27, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

I would point out that one reason Willingham has been ok in right, besides his own work, is having Morgan in center. A real centerfielder gives you more room to have less stellar corners. His arrival just settled the whole situation down.

Posted by: markfromark | July 27, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Fine - so all the more reason not to trade him. Go ahead and get what you can for Johnson, but I don't believe that "blowing it up" is needed. Sign a top free agent SS and/or 1B (and place Dunn at 1B or LF accordingly); spend some $ on the bullpen and maybe 1 experienced starter to bridge to the young guys, and see what you've got.

Posted by: cdstej | July 27, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

By the way, I love Nyjer Morgan. Love the way he plays, love the way he wears his uniform, love everything about him. And yes, he has improved the team. But the Nats' record since Morgan started playing is 7-15. How much better can any one guy make this team?

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 5:25 PM | Report abuse

"The Nats have had 12 picks since 2000 and exactly one of those guys (Ryan Zimmerman) is now in the big leagues, two, maybe three others might get there again (Bray, Cordero and Detweiler) and there are about four guys in the minors with a shot (Marrero, Crow, Storen, Strasburg?). Do you really like those odds?"

Would it depend on who is making the picks?

So far, I sure am liking Storen. He may get to the majors before the year is out.

Interesting to look at the nats farm authority updated web site:

1st round picks on the 40-man roster July 27th:
----------------------------------------------
Ryan Zimmerman, Austin Kearns, JD Martin, Sean Burnett, Ron Villone, Ross Detwiler Corey Patterson, Mike McDougal, Luis Atilano
-----------------------------------------------
2nd round picks on the 40-man roster July 27th:
-----------------------------------------------
Logan Kensing, Adam Dunn.
-----------------------------------------------
3rd round picks on the 40-man roster July 27th:
-----------------------------------------------
Josh Bard, Nick Johnson, Garett Mock, Ian Desmon, Justin Maxwell, Matt Chico


Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:26 PM | Report abuse

"and possibly setting a Nats stolen base record."

Sorry section 505203 it may have been confusing.
I justified his leading off instead of Morgan
stating that he set records in the minors in stolen bases. He also seems to have a bit more power than does Morgan. He and Morgan I suspect would bat 1 and 2 ... interchangeably.

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Sign a top free agent SS and/or 1B (and place Dunn at 1B or LF accordingly); spend some $ on the bullpen and maybe 1 experienced starter to bridge to the young guys, and see what you've got.

If you add two free agents, at 1B and SS, probably 2-3 relievers, and a starting pitcher, that IS blowing it up.

By the way, there are no really good free agents at SS (Khalil Greene?) or 1B (Carlos Delgado?) next year. The two best free agents on the list appear to be Jason Bay and Brian Roberts, unless they resign before then.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 5:33 PM | Report abuse

periculum

your silence is deafening on this matter.

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

ian desmond was born in 1985. does this pertain to him? wouldn't he lean more towards being a "failure" by your reasoning since he's not a proven major leaguer?

Posted by: surly_w | July 27, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

peri, why is that list interesting? At least half of those guys are on their way out.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

If you add two free agents, at 1B and SS, probably 2-3 relievers, and a starting pitcher, that IS blowing it up.

----

Fair enough - but I am responding to the "blow it up" angst by some on this board, which I interpret as suggesting that no one return to the starting lineup except maybe RZimm. Replace one or two position players, OK. Replace 6 or 7, not so much...

Posted by: cdstej | July 27, 2009 5:36 PM | Report abuse

"ian desmond was born in 1985. does this pertain to him? wouldn't he lean more towards being a "failure" by your reasoning since he's not a proven major leaguer?

Posted by: surly_w | July 27, 2009"

Dukes is 1984, as is Maxwell. Perhaps next year?

Not my criteria ... but as Baltova1 put it: it does seem as if they are on their way out?

I believe he is right, and that is the approach Rizzo and company are taking ... If Desmond doesn't pan out by this or next year? Espinosa born in 1988 would be next up I guess?

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:38 PM | Report abuse

I justified his leading off instead of Morgan stating that he set records in the minors in stolen bases.

-----

What records? His top stolen base total in the minors is 33, and that was in 2005. Morgan topped that three times in the minors and he's got 29 in the majors already this year.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

The more advanced player has more value if skill sets are equal. More advanced is less risky, too.

However, do you trade for a player thats more advanced but less likely to be as projectable as a supplemental first rounder? More risk generally means more reward, especially if a team is willing to pay overslot. At least thats my thinking.

Rizzo, based on the 2009 draft, seems to steer away from risk and places a higher value on more polished players.

Personally, I'd unload Johnson and Beimel for whatever you can get. Johnson's health has been a small miracle this year. Neither is a guarantee to reach Type B status, so trade them and get something in return. If you like either player for next season, then resign them.

As for the Expos/Nats draft since 2000, I place little credence in the results. Loria & MLB werent looking for the best player. They were looking for the best player for the buck.

Posted by: LosDoceOcho | July 27, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

"peri, why is that list interesting? At least half of those guys are on their way out.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009"

Given the record this year, one wouldn't think you would find that many guys on the roster from the first three rounds ... errr at least I wouldn't? I found that surprising?

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:40 PM | Report abuse

cdstej, I think we're more in agreement than opposition. I'd lean toward keeping half the current starters (Zimm, Morgan, Flores, Dunn, maybe Willingham) but trading the rest, including useful guys like Harris and Beimel. But if you think you have a chance to make a trade for one of the guys on the keeper list, I'd trade them, too.

I just don't think this team is close to being decent, much less good. That's why I'm ready and willing to make a lot of moves.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 5:43 PM | Report abuse

"What records? His top stolen base total in the minors is 33, and that was in 2005. Morgan topped that three times in the minors and he's got 29 in the majors already this year.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009"

I should think they would be interchangeable? Morgan does seem to get caught a lot more. Who takes more walks? Morgan or Desmond? Wouldn't that be a criteria? Its something Nick Johnson does well. Be something one would like to see at the top of the lineup.

As surly_w pointed out, given Desmond's age wouldn't a decision be made about him sooner rather than later?

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:44 PM | Report abuse

Ian Desmond, I thought, had a Potomac record for stolen bases?

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

peri, by the time we got guys like Martin, Villone, C. Patterson, McDougal, Atilano, Kensing and Bard, they were no longer high draft picks, they were journeymen. That's why I'm not impressed with their draft status. At this stage of their careers, it's irrelevant.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

There is something on which I am still unclear. Is this "median of 1988" a philosophy that Mike Rizzo has expressed, or is this something that was extrapolated by checking the birth dates of players drafted by the Nats? I don't ever recall hearing Rizzo espouse such a philosophy.

Posted by: leetee1955 | July 27, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse

The problem with making "a lot of moves" is that most of the interest by other teams will be on the Nationals minor league prospects. As is the interest of the National's brain trust.

In other words, what do you do if there isn't that much interest generated by the guys on your MLB roster you want to unload? Because of either age or poor performance in one or more areas?

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse

"or is this something that was extrapolated by checking the birth dates of players drafted by the Nats?"

That and Rizzo's statements (and draft results) that he preferred college grads or close to college grads over HS players.

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Looking at the ages in A, advanced A, GCL rookies. Noting the ages of "more valuable prospects": A Detwiler, a Storen, a Marerro, etc.

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:53 PM | Report abuse

So 1988 is more or less an arbitrary number? A graduating college senior at age 22 would likely have been born in 1987, for example. A junior in 1988, a sophomore in 1989 and a freshman in 1990. .

Posted by: leetee1955 | July 27, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

The problem with making "a lot of moves" is that most of the interest by other teams will be on the Nationals minor league prospects. As is the interest of the National's brain trust.

In other words, what do you do if there isn't that much interest generated by the guys on your MLB roster you want to unload? Because of either age or poor performance in one or more areas?

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Right -- we all say trade Nick or Willie. But Rizzo isn't going to give them away for nothing or next to it. Either way, though, next year's roster will have a lot of turnover. Even forgetting the bullpen for a moment, the bench needs to be completely reworked (with the possible exception of Willie if he isn't traded). No more Ronnie, no more Austin, no more Anderson, and maybe both of the 2 backup catchers gone. If Gonzo keeps hitting, he's the utility guy. But as I said, you've got to find somewhere a grade A SS or 1B. Then the starting line up is OK with Zimm, Morgan, Dunn, Josh and Jesus returning.

Posted by: cdstej | July 27, 2009 5:57 PM | Report abuse

"That's why I'm not impressed with their draft status. At this stage of their careers, it's irrelevant.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009"

Noting that Martin was born in 1983, and
Atilano in 1985.
Mock in 1983.

For comparison: Lannan 11th in 2005 (1984)
Stammen 12th in 2005 (1984)
Lincecum 1st (1984)

Baltova1's opinions appear to closely mirror what I deem to be the strategies of the National's GM and staff.

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Nick is unlikely to be a Type B if you believe the the best model of the Elias ranking system. It's on MLBTR. I have not looked, but I'm guessing Beimel would be a Type B.

It's funny - I just got through a long post on why it is wrong to put too much faith in a half season of one of the defensive rating systems (UZR), but that system kind of backs up the observation that Willingham is not unusually bad defensively. Not to push small numbers too hard, but his range seems adequate, his arm a little subpar, and he seems a but fumbley with his glove, which I'll give to getting used to RF and some early errors. I'm happy every day Willingham is in the line up. I would ask for more for him in trade than either Nick or Dunn, given their contract status.

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | July 27, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

So 1988 is more or less an arbitrary number?

More of a semi-arbitrary average if you will.
Based on observation of the draft and transactions
down in the farm system.

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 6:02 PM | Report abuse

I disagree that "most of the interest by other teams will be on the Nationals minor league prospects." I think Johnson, Willingham, Dunn, W. Harris, Guzman, Beimel and even Villone have real value to big league teams in the pennant race. The real game that Rizzo is playing is to see how much he can get before committing to a deal. On the one hand, the economy's tight. On the other, a lot of teams are in contention, so there are a lot of buyers. Back to the first hand: most of our trade bait has flaws. On the second hand, they're still better than what the buyers are using now.

I predict Rizzo gets the job done and makes some deals this week and then moves some other guys (Villone, W. Harris) in August. We'll found out in a few days.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

By the way, when trying to determine the median age when a player no longer fits the prospect mold, our man Nyjer Morgan was a 26-year old rookie. That's old by most standards.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 6:07 PM | Report abuse

JCA-CC, The most recent version of the estimated Elias rankings indicate that both Nick Johnson and Joe Beimel would be Type B free agents.
http://www.scribd.com/doc/17675287/Rankings-072509

Posted by: nervousnatsfan | July 27, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

My bad. I just saw the 7/25 update. Nick is marginal (60). The previous two updates had him below the cutoff, the last well below. Those numbers are quite volatile.

Posted by: jca-CrystalCity | July 27, 2009 6:15 PM | Report abuse

"So do the Nats hold out for first round trade value in return for either player and hope that both maintain Type B status if neither are traded? Or take the best offer for both even if less than a first rounder in value?"

A bird in the hand. Beimel hasn't been performing well, anyway, which should concern anyone holding on to him, and Nick has not visited the DL yet this year.

Posted by: Section506 | July 27, 2009 6:19 PM | Report abuse

A random question: how many of you out there ever played Strat-o-Matic baseball? It was a great tool to really understand the game, to understand the importance of lefty-righty matchups, of fielding, of clutch hitting, of pitcher fatigue, and of base stealing. I haven't played it in years but I'd love to know the ratings for the Nats players. I think we'd get a real sense of how bad they are as fielders and as clutch hitters.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Strat-O-Matic Baseball and Basketball ruled although I haven't played in years.

Does MacDougal have any value? His name escapes me now but he got his Martis iirc.

Posted by: derwink | July 27, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

That should be "got us Martis" and he was traded for Stanton.

Posted by: derwink | July 27, 2009 6:30 PM | Report abuse

Martis came in exchange for Mike Stanton.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 6:30 PM | Report abuse

By the way, for all the talk about the current lineup and how good it could be with a few, minimal changes, the Nats rank 12th in hitting with RISP in the NL and 14th in hitting with 2 outs and RISP.

Posted by: baltova1 | July 27, 2009 6:33 PM | Report abuse

I played both strat-o-matic baseball and football. They were both great ... guess they never made it into video games?

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 6:37 PM | Report abuse

"By the way, for all the talk about the current lineup and how good it could be with a few, minimal changes, the Nats rank 12th in hitting with RISP in the NL and 14th in hitting with 2 outs and RISP."

In lieu of a trade or trades per your prediction. With the exception of Ian Desmond (they probably have to decide what to do with him), I don't see the lineup changing much.

The pitching is a different story. There seem to be lot more different possibilities and permutations there.

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 6:41 PM | Report abuse

Regarding the Free Agent rankings (Type A/B/None), I thought that they were calculated over two years, not one... and if that is the case, how could Nick be ranked that high after sitting out almost all of last season.

I could be mistaken... but I thought that I read that there was no compensation to he had if Nick walks at the end of his contract.

Posted by: wigi | July 27, 2009 6:49 PM | Report abuse

By the way, when trying to determine the median age when a player no longer fits the prospect mold, our man Nyjer Morgan was a 26-year old rookie. That's old by most standards.

baltova1

Morgan is 29 as of July 2 (he only played in 84 games his first two years and was a 26 year old as a rookie). With the demise of steroids, ballplayers are wearing out at 33-35 again unless they are superstars, so teams are going younger, except for the Nats who were a very old team at season's start. Rizzo is trying to change that as he should.

Posted by: grclarkdc1 | July 27, 2009 6:50 PM | Report abuse

Man, Jon Garland and Randy Wolf. Too bad there's a rule against the Nationals signing guys like that.

Posted by: sbiel2 | July 27, 2009 6:58 PM | Report abuse

Morgan is far better athlete than say a Dmitri Young. That seems to be a consistent pattern that
has been observed by baseball men. The prospects today are better athletes and pride themselves on that. So, pitchers tend to be better hitters, take pride in knowing how to bunt, field their position and run the bases.

Steroids make it possible to do strenuous workouts on a daily basis, without the requisite need for muscle rest/recuperation followed by growth. They can also help limit injuries.

The athlete still has to put time and effort out in terms of workouts.

Perhaps today's prospects will last longer ... more akin to "throwbacks"?

Posted by: periculum | July 27, 2009 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Off the beaten topic, but in honor of the Milwaukee series: http://tinyurl.com/ma9k53

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | July 27, 2009 7:08 PM | Report abuse

strat-o-matic baseball online:
http://members.sportingnews.com/stratomatic/

Posted by: TWTIB | July 27, 2009 7:25 PM | Report abuse

SF just traded for Ryan Garko. I am guessing this means that NJ doesn't get traded.

Posted by: Willy2 | July 27, 2009 9:35 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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