Network News

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

Reading Material, and an Interview With Drew Storen

A few nuggets here. None too chewy, but hopefully enjoyable nonetheless.

* The Nats have won five in a row, tied for the longest winning streak in Major League Baseball. The Diamondbacks, the weekend opponent at Nationals Park, have the other five-game winning streak. So check back around 10 p.m. Friday night to see which team sits atop the MLB standings -- well, at least when they're configured like this.

* Craig Stammen, Thursday's starter, summed up his latest rough outing by saying, "Twenty-four showed up today and one didn't." His struggles were kind of lost in the shuffle of Thursday's comeback, but Stammen is most certainly having difficulties right now. His last three starts, dating back to July 27, have produced a total of 9 1/3 innings and 16 earned runs. Opponents are hitting .511 against him in that span. One other note about Stammen: There is a stat called "zone contact," which measures the percentage of times a batter makes contact with the ball when swinging at pitches thrown inside the strike zone. Among MLB pitchers who've thrown at least 70 innings, Stammen has the highest zone contact of anybody. When batters swing at a Stammen strike, they hit it 95.5 percent of the time.

* Before the Marlins left town, Manager Fredi Gonzalez held them for a 15-minute closed-door team meeting. Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald writes: "The Marlins might have struck rock bottom by not only losing to the lowly Nationals, but also losing in ways that defied description. The Nationals hadn't swept a series of three games or longer since the George W. Bush administration, but have now won five in a row."

* Here is Bill Gluvna's weekly minor league report.

MLR 8-5-09.pdf


* Tenth overall pick Drew Storen, now 16 games into his minor league career, has so far struck out 36 hitters and walked one at Class A Hagerstown and Potomac. He happened to be at Nationals Park on Thursday, and spent a few minutes talking about his initial experiences in pro ball.

---

Q: You are having an excellent rookie season in pro ball. How happy are you about it, and what are your plans for the rest of the way?

A: I'm excited about how things are going, just very happy about how I've turned things around. I kind of struggled there in the beginning, just kind of getting back to pitching again, but I just plan on keep doing my thing. Just going out there and throwing strikes every time and hopefully finding success. If I get moved (promoted), I get moved.

Q: The way things are going, everybody is talking about you possibly being in the big leagues this year. Is that your hope?

A: I mean, that's my goal, obviously. But I really don't plan on anything. I just kind of take it pitch by pitch, I guess. I don't control that, and I know the Nationals are gonna do what's best for me. If they feel like I can be a good fit for them, they'll put me up there. It's not something I really try concern myself too much about.

Q: You said you were struggling a bit at the beginning. Are you doing anything different now?

A: I really wasn't doing anything different than I did at school. It was kind of a combination of not throwing in a game in a month and an adjustment to pro ball. In pro ball, guys don't really care how hard you throw and I just kind of had to pitch a little more, making sure I got the fastball down. And that was really the main adjustment I had. Fortunately there are some veteran guys down there who were able to help me out.

Q: Like who?

A: Travis Reagan. He had come down from Potomac about a week or so into my stay down there (at Hagerstown) and he helped out a lot.

Q: How much were you aware of the numbers as the no-walk thing was going on?

A: You know, for the first 20 or so strikeouts it didn't really come. And then I kept getting asked about it. Then it got in my head a little bit, so it was kind of nice to get that off my back. But it was kind of something funny. It's actually something I take a lot of pride in, too, so it worked out. It's kind of good to get that monkey off my back, though.

Q: Knowing that's one of the things that you have to do at the big league level -- ball-strike ratio, getting ahead of hitters, things of that nature -- do you think that can help you get here quicker?

A: Absolutely. And it's something that's a key for success out of the bullpen for me. I try to get guys to earn their way on base, and every time you give a guy a free pass it usually comes back to haunt you. Especially at the end of the game. Ironically, the guy I walked did score. So it's just one of those things.

Q: Has there been anything about the minor league experience that maybe you weren't anticipating?

A: I learned how to sleep on a bus. (Laughs.) No, I really honestly didn't anticipate how good the hitters would be. You assume you're going to wooden bats and hitters wouldn't be as good, because I'm used to facing aluminum. But there's really not that much of a difference, because they really are that much better as hitters. They really kind of compensate for having wooden bats. Like I said earlier, you really learn how to pitch in the minor leagues and learn a lot from those older guys.

Q: Was there a period where you first realized that where it was kind of shocking?

A: Yeah, that period was actually my second pitch of pro ball that went about 500 feet. (Laughs.) I remember I fell 1-0 behind the guy and it was my first batter so I was kind of excited to be out there, in front of a big crowd in Hagerstown, and I was like, "All right, I'm gonna throw this fastball by him here." He hit it way over center field, and it was kind of like one of those "welcome to pro ball" moments. And I asked the guy doing the radar, "How hard did I throw?" And he said 96. I was like, "Wow, that's pretty hard." But it was belt-high. In college you can kind of get away with that sometimes. But that was when I started like, "Okay, maybe I need to make some adjustments with my fastball and work down in the zone a little more."

By Chico Harlan  |  August 7, 2009; 8:27 AM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Nats 12, Marlins 8
Next: Tonight's Lineups [Update]

Comments

Chico: after reading the last few gamers, it's clear to me you're wasting your talents. The writing has been superb, and you need to move up the ladder somewhere...fast. Don't walk: run.

Posted by: joemktg1 | August 7, 2009 8:38 AM | Report abuse

Drew sounds like a nice young man, hard worker, willing to take advice and think about his approach. Good luck to him, hope we see him soon in the Nats Capital.

Posted by: Nats_Lady | August 7, 2009 8:38 AM | Report abuse

I'm hoping Drew Storen makes it to the bigs ASAP. We could use a closer with a future. Of course, he cannot be ANY good, since he signed for below slot.

Gee, I don't remember reading that complaint on the board recently.

Actually, I couldn't believe my eyes when a poster rated Storen's ability not on his performance but based on his signing bonus.

Let's be clear about this. If Storen throws even a single pitch for the Nats, this will be a great selection for the team. (The failure rate for any draft choice being so incredibly high.) I have a feeling Drew is going to save many games for this franchise and then we'll agree this was a fantastic pick at 9A.

Posted by: grforbes | August 7, 2009 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Chico, the Nats now have 10 days. Please, start covering the story, even if it just is to tell us that no one will say anything, they are refusing to say if the sides have even met yet, etc.

I recall that in the beginning of the Summer, you related that one of the O's former beat writers who's now a national guy (I forget which one) told you that the summer when they pursued McDonald was the craziest summer of his career. It looks like it's time for things to get crazy.

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | August 7, 2009 9:06 AM | Report abuse

"If Storen throws even a single pitch for the Nats, this will be a great selection for the team. (The failure rate for any draft choice being so incredibly high.)"

Otherwise known as the Bowden-Detwiler Effect--call the guy up months after drafting him and let him throw some pitches in the big leagues. Hence, the pick is not a failure. Brilliant!

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | August 7, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

I understand it isn't the venue for "hard-hitting" journalism, but those Debbi Taylor questions are just absolutely worthless.

Posted by: MinorLeagueFanatic | August 7, 2009 9:13 AM | Report abuse

Stammen seems like a good guy, but I remember the first time I saw him pitch I felt that he is probably better suited as a reliever. The thing I see him do that shocks me is when he is at the plate.

Posted by: alex35332 | August 7, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

Only 5 games back of KC for the worst record in baseball (and from losing the Bryce Harper Sweepstakes). And, we're only 8 back of the Whorioles...Let's Go Nats!!!

Posted by: yobigc | August 7, 2009 9:25 AM | Report abuse

joemktg1, I must question your premise that you can "move up" from writing about baseball. The game has been the muse for some of the world's best wordsmiths. If perusing the work of the membership of the Baseball Writers Association of America isn't sufficient then may I suggest you search out John Updike's 1960 essay "Hub Fans Bid Kid Adieu" as an illustrative example.

Posted by: greggwiggins | August 7, 2009 9:28 AM | Report abuse

"Debbi Taylor questions are just absolutely worthless"

From listening to the press conference on the postgame show yesterday, the questions were posed by multiple reporters. I don't believe any of them were actually Debbi Taylor. At any rate, Storen has only been in pro ball for a couple months. How "hard-hitting" should the questions have been?

Posted by: LandoverHillsBoysClub | August 7, 2009 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Maybe I'm in the minority here but I say let Starsburg and Boras just walk away.

Posted by: Elbaryn | August 7, 2009 8:58 AM

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

No, you're not alone at all. I'm the least emotionally attached to this deal than any other player or transaction yet.

The only things that will bother me if we don't sign Strasburg are the silly fury, anguished cries and threats to cancel season tickets that will be all over this blog.

And Chico, don't listen to CiL. Don't encourage the madness. I'm tickled pink the Strasburg negotiations haven't yet become a zoo. You can hold off telling us anything about it until about 9 p.m. August 17th. Thanks.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 7, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

"Storen has only been in pro ball for a couple months. How "hard-hitting" should the questions have been"

Mr. Storen, is it, or is it not, true that you spit in your hand during the customary little league high-five because Matt D. was making eyes at Katie, who had totally passed you a note in language arts the day before asking if you could be boyfriend and girlfriend, check yes or no?

Posted by: Section506 | August 7, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

"And Chico, don't listen to CiL."

Ouch, NN, that hurts. But don't worry, Chico never listens to me anyway. Where is Barry when I need him?

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | August 7, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Two Nationals prospects suspended 50 games for amphetamines

NEW YORK (AP) -- Outfielder Edgardo Baez and shortstop Ofilio Castro of the Washington Nationals' Double-A team at Harrisburg of the Eastern League have been suspended for 50 games each under baseball's minor league drug program after testing positive for an amphetamine.

The suspensions began Thursday, the commissioner's office said.

The 24-year-old Baez is hitting .254 with nine homers and 28 RBIs. Castro who turns 26 on Aug. 18, is batting .296 with four homers and 36 RBIs.

There have been 48 suspensions this year under the minor league program and four under the major league program.

Posted by: dclifer97 | August 7, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

I too find Debbie Taylor's "questioning" annoying, but I've noticed that a number of the other reporters do the same thing at Riggleman's press conferences: "What did you think of Lannan today?" "How big was it to come back after being down four runs." I've decided that these reporters aren't really looking to be inquisitive, they are just looking for quotes for their stories and so they ask openended questions that sound inane, but get the responses they need. And the players and managers seem happy to oblige, answering in fairly expansive way even if the question is stupid. Still, it would be nice to hear more questioning about strategy, but even the print writers don't seem to do it.

What bugs me most about Debbie is that she'll have the hitting star of the game down on the field right afterward, and she'll ask one question about his performance --"what was your approach on that at bat?" and then she'll turn back to the general, inane questioning style -- "What did you think of John Lannan tonight? How important was getting this win to the team? Kind of a waste. Can they send her to broadcasting school or something?

Posted by: Section222 | August 7, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

No need to rush this kid(Storen)he'll be just fine let him progress at a normal pace,now wouldn't it be nice if he turns out to be better than Strasburg. The D-Backs are ten games under.500 so you know they're thinking sweep, NOT GONNA HAPPEN.

Posted by: dargregmag | August 7, 2009 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Chico - having occassionally picked on you for using junk stats, I feel the need to compliment you on the Stammen stats you cite in the post. Getting hit on 95.5% of pitches swung at in the strike zone is a critically important stat, and a clear sign that his stuff isn't fooling anyone - if they're swinging, they're on it. What that means is more balls in play - combine that with Stammen's tendency to throw ground balls, and that means more balls being hit at the defensive "wizards" we have in the middle of the infield. Considering Belliard and Guzman have an equation of range = (one step + height), it's not surprising that alot of those 95.5% contacts are getting through for hits.

Two really good fixes - one - Stammen needs to develop something that moves a little more or vary his pitches more to induce more swings-and-misses, and two - as we all know - goodness gracious we need help in the middle infield.

Posted by: Highway295Revisited | August 7, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

please continue to ignore strasburg through August 18th.

write about nationals who are performing, like storen!

Posted by: longterm | August 7, 2009 9:52 AM | Report abuse


OK, now that the 5 gamer has been celebrated, shall we begin the Belliard Bash, so I can put the hex on da D backs and lock in a 6 game curly W streak.

Posted by: cokedispatch | August 7, 2009 12:34 AM
-------------------------------------------
Your hex certainly worked yesterday, coke dispatch. As much as I hate to do this, here goes:
Ronnie Belliard was inexplicably out of position for a double play in the 6th yesterday. It looked like an Anderson Hernandez brain freeze.

Sorry Ronnie, but the real Belliard bashers seem to be in hiding along with the Kearns bashers.

Posted by: longhorn64 | August 7, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

lannan is right there with stammen in %contact. so is martis.

Posted by: longterm | August 7, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Chico,

You're both doing a terrific job and wasting your talents. But you're a hard-worker with talent, and there's a shortage of both in this country. You have one other attribute you may not be aware of: car salesman.

If you recall in spring training, you rented a Prius and raved about its gas mileage. I think you went something like 620 miles without a fill-up. That made an impact on me. Having never owned a foreign car, that streak ends for me today. At 59 and a-half, I am picking up a new blue Prius this morning. Partially, not totally, on your recommendation.

I'd call DARCARS sometime today and ask for a cut of the guy's commission.

Happy motoring, all.

Posted by: jdschulz50 | August 7, 2009 10:00 AM | Report abuse

LOL! Nothing personal intended CiL.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 7, 2009 10:01 AM | Report abuse

@CiL - Regarding the comaprisons to the Ben McDonald negotiations. It was a whole different process back then. The signing deadline was whenever the player reported to college (or later an independent league team). MLB changed the rules to alleviate the gamesmanship that was played back then.

In today's environment, the deadline has turned negotiations into a two month period of non-activity concluded with a week of insanity (especially for Boras guys).

Posted by: Brian_ | August 7, 2009 10:05 AM | Report abuse

I couldn't afford a Prius, but traded in my 1989 Fleetwood for a Mazda 5 just to be like Chico.

Posted by: flynnie2 | August 7, 2009 10:06 AM | Report abuse

In defense of Debbi Taylor, while interviewing Adam Dunn Wednedsay night, she was the one and only beat reporter who knew that Guzman had a 10 - now 11 - game streak. Dunn didn't know it, and his reaction to the question was hilarious. She has to act perky in her sideline reports - that trend started a number of years ago. Nora Ephron says that she noticed with the fading of stars like Faye Dunnaway and Angelica Huston, she suddenly was having very well educated women talking in little girl voices saying, "Well, we just don't think this script is gonna work." Don't expect beat reporters to Bill O'Reilly the team that they have to cover every day.

Posted by: flynnie2 | August 7, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

I'm in the ignore Strasburg until the deadline camp (it's all just posturing and hot air until then). There will be plenty of time for celebrating (or pi$$ing and moaning) after that, and there is plenty to celebrate (or pi$$ and moan about) until then.

Re. baseball reporting, sideline reporting is by nature superficial. Such questions are not unique to Taylor or to women (I'm looking at you, Rosenthal). Re. the specific exchange in this post, do we know that the questions are from Taylor? I'd assumed that they were from Chico. Re. baseball writing (which is different from sideline reporting), I agree with Greg's comments.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Ugh, postal intervention again. I posted my comments before reading Flynnie's, for the record.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 10:15 AM | Report abuse

I bet Debbi Taylor knows as much if not more about what's going on with Stephen Strasburg as Chico Harlan does. What does that say about the relative worth of Debbi Taylor and Chico Harlan?

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Send Stammen down bring up someone from AAA, maybe Martis, but I guess we will see what is up with the Zimm Reaper's elbow first. Craig has a good run but now what little stuff he has is being figured out by professional major league hitters, thanks Craig you had a good audition for the future....next! BTW great stat digging Chico.

Posted by: markfd | August 7, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse

I've never been a Belliard-basher, but Kearns still stinks. He's on the DL though, so there's zero chance he'll be in the lineup tonight, or even pinch hitting. So no need to bash. And anyway, I don't hate Austin Kearns personally, I just never want to see him at the plate in a Nationals uniform again.
________________________________________
Sorry Ronnie, but the real Belliard bashers seem to be in hiding along with the Kearns bashers.

Posted by: longhorn64 | August 7, 2009 9:53 AM

Posted by: Section222 | August 7, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse

OK I have to ask a serious question of all the posters here. I have seen a lot of the "we are only 5 games back from not being the worst team" stuff going on lately.

As a Nats fan what do you think is more important long term? Not being the worst team in the league in 2009 or having a shot at a big time player like Bryce Harper?

I would rather have a decade of Bryce Harper because no one is going to remember this season if the Nats become contenders in the future.

Posted by: bigcountry22 | August 7, 2009 10:24 AM | Report abuse

I frankly think that the gains made from not winning the Harper sweep stakes would out weigh the benefit of drafting him. I will obviously change my opinion this time next year if we have drafted him but my current opinion is based on the fact that we had a huge push at signable guys who were older and could fill the dearth of upper minors talent in our system. Next year if we could have a deeper draft and really let Rizzo cut loose without having to worry about major Boras negotiations I think it would do us a lot of good. Also, plunging the money we would spend on a Harper or Strasburg into the International free agent market and signing four or five guys would do a hell of a lot for this team. Now I know CiL would point out that we have the money to do both if we chose and, I agree with that but, but the Lerners don't and won't and I think a clear run at the draft and Int. free agents is more important given the state of the farm.

Posted by: soundbloke | August 7, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

I would think that LAC might point that out rather than CiL, soundbloke. That said, good points.

---

Now I know CiL would point out that we have the money to do both if we chose and, I agree with that but, but the Lerners don't and won't and I think a clear run at the draft and Int. free agents is more important given the state of the farm.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 10:30 AM | Report abuse

I have your back, CiL. ;-)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 10:31 AM | Report abuse

natsfan1a1

Whoa now, don't get me in trouble. I pointed out that I agree with the opinion I thrust on someone else...

Posted by: soundbloke | August 7, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

In terms of trade deadline fallout, this "article" is worth a complete read

http://www.theonion.com/content/news/blue_jays_gm_confirms_there_never

Posted by: Section506 | August 7, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

good question, bigcountry.

as for me, i'm okay with shooting for not-last place. Bryce harper could just as easily fade into the background as this year's losing season will--he is YOUNG.

Either way we'll be in the bottom 5, which still means a pretty good pick.

Posted by: NatsNut | August 7, 2009 10:39 AM | Report abuse

I like Storen. He sounds like he's gone to Crash Davis clichés school.

[Bull_Durham]
Crash Davis: It's time to work on your interviews.
Nuke LaLoosh: My interviews? What do I gotta do?
Crash: You're gonna have to learn your clichés. You're gonna have to study them, you're gonna have to know them. They're your friends. Write this down: "We gotta play it one day at a time."
Nuke: Got to play... it's pretty boring.
Crash: 'Course it's boring, that's the point. Write it down.
[/Bull_Durham]

So when asked if he hopes to be in the big leagues this season, Storen replies, "I just kind of take it pitch by pitch..."

'Course, it would be nice if, when Debbi Taylor asks him, "So how does it feel to get your first major league win?" he were to reply, "It feels out there. I mean, it's a major rush. I mean, it feels radical in kind of a tubular sort of way, but most of all, it feels out there."

Posted by: gilbertbp | August 7, 2009 10:40 AM | Report abuse

Debbie Taylor is a class act of a person. Some of you guys need to get a life and stop tearing people apart. Do you really think she writes all of these questions or are they provided for her like a script?

While she may not be Erin Andrews and ESPN quality, she does well for local broadcasts.

Posted by: GoingGoingGone | August 7, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Only 5 games back of KC for the worst record in baseball (and from losing the Bryce Harper Sweepstakes). And, we're only 8 back of the Whorioles...Let's Go Nats!!!

Posted by: yobigc | August 7, 2009 9:25 AM
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
How sweet would that be to end up in front of the Angelo$ team!!!!!! For that matter, San Diego, Pitts, and KC.

Bryce Harper is "advised" by $cott Bora$$ so do you really want to test that well twice?

So 53 games left in the season. If the Nats go .500 the rest of the way, they are guaranteed to AVOID a 100 loss season!!!!!!
Hard to believe I am so excited about that.

Posted by: GoingGoingGone | August 7, 2009 10:50 AM | Report abuse

I can't believe people are knocking the quality of the interview with Storen. That last answer, on his first batter, is classic:

I remember I fell 1-0 behind the guy and it was my first batter so I was kind of excited to be out there, in front of a big crowd in Hagerstown, and I was like, "All right, I'm gonna throw this fastball by him here." He hit it way over center field, and it was kind of like one of those "welcome to pro ball" moments. And I asked the guy doing the radar, "How hard did I throw?" And he said 96. I was like, "Wow, that's pretty hard." But it was belt-high. In college you can kind of get away with that sometimes. But that was when I started like, "Okay, maybe I need to make some adjustments with my fastball and work down in the zone a little more."

Reminds me of the story Brooks Robinson used to tell about his debut in the big leagues. I think he was like 2-4 in his first game, and was standing on second after hitting a double. He said he was standing there, thinking, "This game isn't so hard." He then got picked off second, went like 0-20 and got sent back to the minors.

Posted by: baltova1 | August 7, 2009 10:51 AM | Report abuse

greggwiggins: I'd agree with you if the print media business wasn't in such a decline. The days of Updike, Red Smith, etc. are not returning any time soon, and the industry is in the throes of morphing into something unknown. If you're talented, then you don't want to focus efforts on a crippled medium.

Posted by: joemktg1 | August 7, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Grazi, natsfan1a1, but may I point out that there are three g's in "Gregg"?

Posted by: greggwiggins | August 7, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

@Brian, thanks for the historical context. I agree, a whole summer of Strasburg stories would have been miserable. Now that we're getting into crunch time though, we all know that this story is going to be covered at least by the national guys--many of whom seem to have an axe to grind when it comes to the Nats. So for that reason if nothing else, I hope Chico is in there on the coverage also, and maybe he will scoop some of these national guys in the process.

NN, no insult taken, just joking around.

And thanks, 1a--Funny how people sometimes seem to get me confused with LAC--though we did often agree on things when it comes to the Lerners and their cheapness.

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | August 7, 2009 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Feelings on Bryce Harper:

There are a multitude of quality players at the top. I, personally, would have been just as happy with Ackley as Strasburg. And last year, Alvarez #2 to Beckham #1. It's all good people.

Posted by: dclifer97 | August 7, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Debbi Taylor will report on the Strasburg negotiations and interview Stephen Strasburg long before Chico Harlan does.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Drew Storen sounds like a kid who has things in perspective. Not like some over hyped first rounders..... The Nats don't need to rush the kid. Maybe give him a few hitters in September and start him in double A next year.

A those that want to keep mentioning Strasburg, he does not deserve to be paid over slot. It doesn't matter what he did in college and who his agent is (Boras). No need to overpay period......

Posted by: punchdaclock | August 7, 2009 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Flynnie and others, please don't call Debbi Taylor a "reporter." Chico is a reporter. Taylor is an employee of MASN, a corporation whose business it is to make money by broadcasting the sporting events of teams for whom they have exclusive broadcast rights. Her job is to present her employer's product in a manner that will maximize sales of that product.

As such, unlike an actual reporter, she will NOT ask players or any other employee or owner of the team, ANY uncomfortable or probing questions that can't be answered by anyone who's been to The Crash Davis School of Baseball Cliches.

Posted by: gilbertbp | August 7, 2009 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Time to rustle up Rizzo/Guzman...

Rotoworld:
The Red Sox are unsure of the severity of Jed Lowrie's wrist injury.

There's a chance the numbness he was feeling Thursday night is related to the wrist surgery he had earlier this season. "We all know what he’s gone through with his wrist,’’ Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "We’re going to have to figure it out pretty quick . . . We’ll spend some time and try to figure out what to do with him. That’s all we can do right now.’’ The Red Sox may be forced to rely on Nick Green again as their starting shortstop.

Posted by: dclifer97 | August 7, 2009 11:03 AM | Report abuse

"Taylor is an employee of MASN, a corporation whose business it is to make money by broadcasting the sporting events of teams for whom they have exclusive broadcast rights."

I believe the term you are searching for is Larry Michael.

Posted by: dclifer97 | August 7, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

CiL

I have never once confused you with LAC. No sir, not ever.

Posted by: soundbloke | August 7, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

This has become a nitpickers blog. But, I suppose that is part of what a blog is. I personally don't have a problem with Debbi Taylor. She provides the fluff factor which has become a staple of sports television these days.

Posted by: cokedispatch | August 7, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

The 95.5% is contact, not hits, right? I would expect to see a high number from "non strike out" pitchers. That being said, I don't think anyone is saying Stammen's ceiling is anything more than spot starter (hopefully).

Posted by: goexpos2 | August 7, 2009 11:10 AM | Report abuse

@cokedispatch: Agreed. But she's not a reporter.

Posted by: gilbertbp | August 7, 2009 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Also, I said this tongue in cheek before, "Who will the Pads take between Harper and Strasburg with the number one pick next year."

The way we are playing, there is a scenario where if the Royals pass us for #1 and we don't sign Strasburg, we could lose out on him AND Harper in next year's draft!

Posted by: goexpos2 | August 7, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

"CiL

I have never once confused you with LAC. No sir, not ever.

Posted by: soundbloke"

I once confused CiL (or was it LAC?) with Debbi Taylor. Next thing I knew, I was experiencing my own personal Crying Game.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

> @cokedispatch: Agreed. But she's not a reporter.

Actually, she is a reporter. What she's not is a journalist.

What is Chico Harlan?

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Apologies to soundbloke and Greggg for my dual (dueling?) transgressions.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

LOL, 1a!!

Posted by: NatsNut | August 7, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Personally, I don't care what the Nats end up paying Strasburg - below slot, slot, 10 times slot - it's not my money.

The only thing that is important is that the Nats sign Strasburg. If the Nats don't want to pay Strasburg, they should never have drafted him. Having a pick that high is an asset - and if they don't Pay Strasburg, well, they shouldn't have drafted him - they should have done their due diligence, realized his price, and picked someone else - if they are ultimately unable to sign him, it is a failure of a draft.

Why - the Nats allocated a set amount of money for the draft (fine, even billionaires have to live by a budget). And part of that budgeting process meant drafting for signability in some of the slots after Strasburg. And again, I'm ok with that aspect as well - as long as they sign Strasburg. Because - the way I see it - is if you set aside money for Strasburg, then draft for signability afterwards, and then fail to sign Strasburg, they'll be left with a pile of money that they didn't spend on Strasburg and didn't get to spend on the picks after SS because they drafted for signability, not talent.

So, if the Nats cannot ink him by the deadline, it is a huge, monumental error on the part of the Nats front office.

-----------------------------------------
A those that want to keep mentioning Strasburg, he does not deserve to be paid over slot. It doesn't matter what he did in college and who his agent is (Boras). No need to overpay period......

Posted by: punchdaclock |

Posted by: comish4lif | August 7, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Don't forget though, that Boras has his sticky litle mitts on each of the first three picks this season (Strasburg, Ackley, Tate -- all unsigned), so who's to say he might not have a similar haul in next year's draft? Avoiding Harper does not necessarily mean avoiding Boras.
Besides, since I live in Vegas and have seen Harper play, I would love for him to get the chance to play with the Nats if everything works out.

Posted by: mjhoya12 | August 7, 2009 11:47 AM | Report abuse

er, I meant "Gregg." Is is lunch time yet?

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Er, is "it" lunch time. I can has cheezburger?

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I bet Debbi Taylor knows as much if not more about what's going on with Stephen Strasburg as Chico Harlan does. What does that say about the relative worth of Debbi Taylor and Chico Harlan?

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

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

I'm sure that most of you know that this poster is nunof1/ABM (or as my British Mum would say: a BM., 'please, deahh; before we leave on our trip, use the toilet.').

FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome is a sad excuse for a male, one who feels the need to constantly compete (unsuccessfully) with Chico Harlan, Tom Boswell, Dan Steinberg, Dave Sheinin, Mike Wise, or any other more talented, more intelligent, more successful guy than he. Animal Planet features countless male animals who charge, and tilt, and pursue one another, as they try to prove dominance.

ABM, by the way, is a cook in a diner at lunchtime; he mounts tires (not females) in the evening at Costco for $11.50/hour. Not Alpha nor Beta; not Gamma, but a Zeta male? Yup.

Posted by: nova_g_man | August 7, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

comish4lif - great point. If the Nats had decided NOT to draft Strasburg, and to instead spend that money on, say: Ackley; busting slot at 9A; and international signings, that would have been (in my opinion) a completely defensible position. What is less defensible, to me, is drafting a guy like Strasburg and failing to sign him. Now, they get a compensation pick, so it's not an all-or-nothing proposition, but I don't believe a team in the Nats' predicament can afford to postpone the benefits of what you correctly identify as an asset, that top pick.

Posted by: Section220 | August 7, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Comish
Sure, but what if he asks for something outrageous, like...
[pregnant pause]
ONE MILLION DOLLARS!

But seriously, while I agree that they need to be prepared to pay through the nose for Strasburg, you can't seriously expect them to hand him a blank check. There is a number - $20 or $25 million by my informal poll - at which the Lerners could walk away without incurring the wrath of most fans.

Posted by: TomServo | August 7, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

@nova_g_man: Huh? Perhaps it's time you modify your dose, either up or down. I have no idea which is appropriate, but perhaps your doctor can advise you.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Section 220 - I completely agree with your scenario of not drafting Strasburg and drafting Ackley and busting slot at 9A. The Lerners would have had to endure more assignations of "cheap Lerners" but they would have been defended by many.

Not signing Strasburg is indefensible since we all know/knew how expensive he is and how difficult Boras is. There's nothing to be surprised about. It will be disingenuous and insulting IF they don't sign him and then Mark Lerner comes out and acts surprised and insulted by Boras' requests.

There's nothing new in Boras' MO here.

Getting pick 1A as compensation doesn't leave us holding an empty bag, but it does make 1A a signability pick, because they won't get another compensation pick if they fail to sign that same pick 2 years running. And the Nats cannot continue to exchange the current year opportunity for a future year signability pick.

Posted by: comish4lif | August 7, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

If I didn't make clear in my earlier post, I'm okay with Debbi Taylor. She's perky and somewhat knowledgeable and not too hard on the eyes. What should we expect from a sideline reporter? Also, Storen's interview sounded pretty good on the radio, although it might seem more cliched in print.

Posted by: LandoverHillsBoysClub | August 7, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Can one of you fine fellow nationals fans point me in the direction of the stat that shows the net positive effect of a player (ie Adam dunn produces a ton of runs buts costs a few in return with his D)

I remember a stat being referenced on hete but can't find it.

Thanks! Let's make it 6 in a row colin!

Posted by: curz | August 7, 2009 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Re. baseball writing (which is different from sideline reporting), I agree with Greg's comments.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 10:13 AM
----------------

Grazi, natsfan1a1, but may I point out that there are three g's in "Gregg"?

Posted by: greggwiggins | August 7, 2009 10:53 AM
----------------

Apologies to soundbloke and Greggg for my dual (dueling?) transgressions.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 11:16 AM
---------------

er, I meant "Gregg." Is is lunch time yet?

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 11:51 AM
----------------

Aww, gee, natsfan1a1, thanks. But, you know, after I read the first one I was all set to come on here and praise you for being one of my favorite kind of people -- a smart(bleep!)

Posted by: greggwiggins | August 7, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

FromTheEclipse: "Actually, she is a reporter."

The questions she asks are of exactly the same heft and probity as the questions David Letterman asks. I guess Letterman is a reporter, too.

Posted by: gilbertbp | August 7, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse

"Sorry Ronnie, but the real Belliard bashers seem to be in hiding along with the Kearns bashers."
-----
Sorry- I was busy. I think it's great he's gotten a couple clutch at bats. Maybe somebody will give us something for him...like a bag of mulch for the cherry trees at Nationals Park. They at least provide some aesthetic value to the club, unlike Belliard's less-than-athletic physique. I think the cherry trees might move faster too. Have you seen how far back Belliard plays 2B? I think he was the only player in MLB to play BEHIND Lastings Millege in CF last year. He's cost us more runs in the field than the last 2 nights can make up for. I hope he gives some of that $5mill he's making to charity, otherwise it's robbery. Maybe he should donate to Jim Bowden's unemployment funds, since without a moron like Bowden, Belliard would be lucky to have a job at all. I wouldn't want him if I was cheering for a little league team.

Go Nats!

Posted by: cheeseburger53 | August 7, 2009 12:18 PM | Report abuse

"I once confused CiL (or was it LAC?) with Debbi Taylor. Next thing I knew, I was experiencing my own personal Crying Game."

Wasn't me, must have been LAC. Makes sense , since I had heard that the 2 of you once had a thing. So which of your many prior screennames were you using at the time, ABM?

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | August 7, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

"FromTheEclipse: "Actually, she is a reporter."

The questions she asks are of exactly the same heft and probity as the questions David Letterman asks. I guess Letterman is a reporter, too."

They report. You decide.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 12:21 PM | Report abuse

hehe, guilty as charged, Chief.

---

Aww, gee, natsfan1a1, thanks. But, you know, after I read the first one I was all set to come on here and praise you for being one of my favorite kind of people -- a smart(bleep!)

Posted by: greggwiggins | August 7, 2009 12:17 PM |

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 12:22 PM | Report abuse

And since you mention David Letterman, between the jokes I've actually seen Letterman ask much more probing questions than Chico Harlan ever does.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 12:25 PM | Report abuse

So what're the zone contact percentages of pitch-to-contact people like Lannan? It can't be all that high?

Posted by: swang30 | August 7, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

Chico - this is good stuff. I loved the link to the "standings." And the Drew Storen stuff was great - he sounds like a really bright kid. I hope he does well. Your gamers have been excellent.

Posted by: PattyinSJ | August 7, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for bringing up Letterman. He once sent Biff, the floor crew guy, to cover the World Series and I remember he asked somebody this question:

"You've pulled your hamstring before, but have you ever pulled anybody else's?"

Posted by: baltova1 | August 7, 2009 12:49 PM | Report abuse

Great story from Storen.
Nuke: I want to announce my presence with authority!
Crash: This guy is a first-pitch fastball hitter.
Nuke: Well, he ain't seen MY heat.
Crash: Ok, meat, show him your heat. (aside to hitter while walking back to the plate): Fastball.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

So, um, Eclipse, are you trying to say that David Letterman is a reporter and Chico is not?

Odd.

Posted by: gilbertbp | August 7, 2009 12:57 PM | Report abuse

I never said Chico isn't a reporter. I just said that Debbi Taylor is. Can't they both be reporters?

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 12:59 PM | Report abuse

"Pride goeth before a fall, but giddiness makes more people dizzy and distracted."

Zimmerman can't possibly keep hitting. Soon, the real Belliard will untie himself, escape from the closet, and expose that imposter from last night. Nyjer Morgan is cheap. The pitching staff will get overconfident, and Bard will tell the hitters what they're throwing just to teach the pitchers a lesson.

There, that ought to get the baseball basement cat off us for another night.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

SS Negotiations: FWIW, I'm not feeling too impatient. It's like reporting returns two weeks before the election--there are none. There is no news. No man, no dog, nobody biting anybody.

Yes, we're eager to see him signed (and commish makes a good argument), but there are Buddhist monks in mountain caves in Shri Lanka who already know this is going to be a last-minute deal.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Can one of you fine fellow nationals fans point me in the direction of the stat that shows the net positive effect of a player (ie Adam dunn produces a ton of runs buts costs a few in return with his D)

I remember a stat being referenced on hete but can't find it.

Thanks! Let's make it 6 in a row colin!

--------

OOOOOOOOOOOOH!!!! OOOOOOOOOOH!!! ME!!!! CALL ON ME!!!


http://www.baseballprospectus.com/statistics/sortable/index.php?cid=204031

Posted by: Section506 | August 7, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

But if I were negotiating with Boras, I'd spend at least several hours trying to get him to say something about "moose and squirrel."
But maybe that's just me.
I do that to people named Natasha, too.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

"There have been 48 suspensions this year under the minor league program and four under the major league program.
Posted by: dclifer97"

Wonder if the major leaguers are having the minor leaguers submit their urine samples... cuz there are still a lot of greenies floating around.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 7, 2009 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Nice to know we're keeping our sense of humor in here during the good times, too.
But never forget who you are. So:
Curz, i.e. means "that is." Latin, stands for "id est." You wanted e.g., "for example."

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Paraphrasing here:

"Absolutely. And it's something that's a key for success out of the bullpen for THE NATINALS! Trying to get guys to earn their way on base, and every time you give a guy a free pass it usually COMES BACK to HAUNT you. Especially AT THE END OF THE GAME."

They need to hang something like this up in the bullpen during games ... in huge hard to miss letters.

Posted by: periculum | August 7, 2009 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Other ways to measure the same thing are looking at Runs Created (RC) and Adjusted Batting Runs (BtRuns). The first is a Bill James creation that tries to get at how many runs a player creates, the second is another SABR creation that takes into account a player costing runs and therefore can have a negative value.

Another fun one is OWin% which calculates if a team had, for example, nine Adam Dunns, how much it would win.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/WSN/2009-batting.shtml

Posted by: Section506 | August 7, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

"Drew sounds like a nice young man, hard worker, willing to take advice and think about his approach. Good luck to him, hope we see him soon in the Nats Capital.

Posted by: Nats_Lady | August 7, 2009"

The way he is pitching can't help but expect to see him in September ...

Posted by: periculum | August 7, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

And "e.g." stands for exempli gratia, "For the sake/purpose of example"

Posted by: Section506 | August 7, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

So this is weird. I bought some catchers gear online, and they insisted on giving me a titanium necklace ("a $24 value!") absolutely free. I tried to get it off the order; wouldn't budge.
I'm not saying I'm not superstitious--I am. Titanium is just not one of my superstitions.

I might try it anyway. Lately, HBP has been my best offensive weapon.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:22 PM | Report abuse

"At 59 and a-half, I am picking up a new blue Prius this morning. Partially, not totally, on your recommendation."

Realizing that you could have had the same technology, engine and drive train from Ford: in the Fusion and the Mercury Milan. Plus the SUV?

Posted by: periculum | August 7, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

"Taylor is an employee of MASN, a corporation whose business it is to make money by broadcasting the sporting events of teams for whom they have exclusive broadcast rights."

I believe the term you are searching for is Larry Michael.

Posted by: dclifer97 | August 7, 2009 11:06 AM
*****************************************

Good one, dclifer97! Although Debbi is lightyears better than Michael, a pilot-fish whose suction cup is attached to Snyders, what's the word? we used it for Colome - buttocks. Speaking of which, she did break the news of JZimm's taking one off the hindparts in his first rehab satrt in Potomac.

Posted by: flynnie2 | August 7, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, Eclipse, but Debbi is an interviewer, paid to feed softball questions we already know the answers to ("So, Adam, how did it feel to hit that game-winning home run?"), to paid entertainers who have been taught how to answer them. She's part of the entertainment package.

Posted by: gilbertbp | August 7, 2009 1:24 PM | Report abuse

If they win the next two, Charlie and Dave should host a celebratory meet-up at IHOP.

Posted by: flynnie2 | August 7, 2009 1:24 PM | Report abuse

506, so, do these metrics take into account bad baserunning plays, like running through a stop sign with a runner ahead of you?

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

I heard snakes taste like chicken. Hopefully the Nats can fry some up for dinner this evening.

Posted by: periculum | August 7, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

LAC would say that's the only international money the Lerners are willing to spend.
**********
If they win the next two, Charlie and Dave should host a celebratory meet-up at IHOP.

Posted by: flynnie2 | August 7, 2009 1:24 PM

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Coverage is Lacking - I thought "the Eclipse the place where Bob Carpenter lives" probably WAS Bob Carpenter! Defended the Lerners, despite the 72 piles of poo before our very watering eyes. How did you know it's An Briosca Mor/nunof1/sec 417??? The url? Or is it too secret to let us in on? I had no idea!

Posted by: flynnie2 | August 7, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Peri, I think it's more like fish, deep-water fish in particular.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

I let my insider sub lapse. Can someone not so Cheap as I post Olney's column referenced in "Real doubts are beginning to emerge that the Nats will be able to sign Stephen Strasburg" post on MLBTradeRumors?

Posted by: RicketyCricket | August 7, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

and could someone post the pictures and accounts of tonight's game?

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Thanks 506.

If I want to capture defense, It sounds like I should use Adjusted Batting Runs (BtRuns)?

Posted by: curz | August 7, 2009 1:38 PM | Report abuse

I blew the joke, by the way. It wasn't hamstrings, it was groins. Much funnier that way...

Posted by: baltova1 | August 7, 2009 1:39 PM | Report abuse

506, so, do these metrics take into account bad baserunning plays, like running through a stop sign with a runner ahead of you?

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:25 PM

++++++++++++++

...or leaping over second base like it was a pit of snakes?

Posted by: NatsNut | August 7, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

In ex-Nats related news (rotoworld):

Brewers recalled RHP Jesus Colome from Triple-A Nashville.

Colome had been great in two weeks with Nashville -- a 0.00 ERA and 11 strikeouts in seven innings. However, he is just a few weeks removed from being released by the Nationals, which is hardly a vote of confidence in his abilities.

Posted by: dclifer97 | August 7, 2009 1:42 PM | Report abuse

And the A's just release Giambi. If Jimbo were here, he'd be all over that!

Posted by: dclifer97 | August 7, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Well, Jimmy *does* have a Frostbite Falls connection, so that should help. What? FrostBURG? Oh. Never mind.

---

But if I were negotiating with Boras, I'd spend at least several hours trying to get him to say something about "moose and squirrel."
But maybe that's just me.
I do that to people named Natasha, too.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:13 PM

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Or leaping out of the path of a throw to first from the pitcher, as though playing dodgeball rather than baseball?

Ah, memories. Good times.

---

506, so, do these metrics take into account bad baserunning plays, like running through a stop sign with a runner ahead of you?

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | August 7, 2009 1:25 PM

++++++++++++++

...or leaping over second base like it was a pit of snakes?

Posted by: NatsNut | August 7, 2009 1:42 PM

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | August 7, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

"Sorry, Eclipse, but Debbi is an interviewer, paid to feed softball questions we already know the answers to ("So, Adam, how did it feel to hit that game-winning home run?"), to paid entertainers who have been taught how to answer them. She's part of the entertainment package."

You may not realize it, but most if not all of the player quotes used by Chico Harlan in his gamers, and in interviews of players like the one here of Storen, come from pool media opportunities where the questions are asked by Debbi Taylor, Bill Ladson, Chico Harlan, Washington Times reporters, etc. Basically whoever has been sent by media organizations to cover the team that day. Print media tends to excerpt these media availabilities without including the questions that brought about the player quotes, whereas broadcast media tend more often to play them in their entirety over the air - questions and answers. But either way, the people who ask the questions are ALL interviewers, and they're ALL reporters. Debbi Taylor is a sideline reporter, Chico Harlan is a beat reporter. Note the use of the common word there: reporter. And all reporters conduct interviews, so they're all interviewers too.

And for anyone who complains about Debbi Taylor's questions being insipid, let's hear a few of Chico Harlan's questions to compare. We never do, though. All we see are the answers he gets.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

> I blew the joke, by the way. It wasn't hamstrings, it was groins. Much funnier that way...

That's why Biff gets all the airtime and makes the big bucks, and you don't.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 1:50 PM | Report abuse

> Colome had been great in two weeks with Nashville

Can you say "small sample size"? In two weeks, Jesus Colome could get off what, maybe thirty pitches, tops?

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 1:52 PM | Report abuse

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2009/writers/ted_keith/08/05/pirates.trades/index.htm

A must read for all Nats Fans still sticking to the "StanK Plan".

Anyone catch the Junkies on JFK lately? Apparently they are doing a spot for MASN tonight on Nats Xtra, however the way I heard it they already taped the segment. The dopes (except Lurch-who says he is a Red Sox fan) actually congratulated themselves by admitting they know absolutely nothing about the Nats and......haven't been to a baseball game in 5 years. Jeez has anybody ever wondered why these people call themselves SportsJunkies.

BTW former XM-175 MLB Homeplate local talker Holden Kushner landed at JFK for a tryout in the 7-10P slot. So one would think he would bring his MLB knowledge to the table and generate an alternative to Redskins Radio Part Duh 24X7X365. Nope, that F'n sellout actually on air said after doing 5 years on XM he is convinced that baseball fans have an inferiority complex. Yeah and you cashed the checks every two week you stooge. Here's to HK, hope you rot in the same hell hole as Mike Wise.

Posted by: TippyCanoe | August 7, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

506, I dont think that stat, Adjusted Batting Runs, incorporates defense. Do you know of any that incorporate defense with offense? Trying to prove Dunn adds more with his offense than gives up with his defense. Thanks

Adjusted Batting Runs = (.47) 1B + (.78) 2B + 1.09 (3B) + (1.40) HR + .33 (BB+HBP) -.25 (AB-H) - (0.50) (Outs on base)

Posted by: curz | August 7, 2009 1:56 PM | Report abuse

"> Colome had been great in two weeks with Nashville

Can you say "small sample size"? In two weeks, Jesus Colome could get off what, maybe thirty pitches, tops?"

I thought everyone wanted the "prospects"? Check out Syracuse's bullpen. Novoa, Segovia, Spradlin, a Brian Oliver fav and GW grad Wilkie, and Zenicola ...

Posted by: periculum | August 7, 2009 1:56 PM | Report abuse

CiL: I'm pretty sure it was Tim Kurkjian who covered the 'Summer of Ben' in Baltimore.

I'd like to see an update every once and a while, as well (maybe Monday, when we're a week out?), but would prefer to avoid the breathless build-up commonly seen on cable news today ("Counting Down -- Only 17 hours and 33 minutes left until the Michael Jackson funeral!!")

Posted by: Bethesdangit | August 7, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Buster Olney says... "It might mean nothing, it might mean a little something: During the Nationals' broadcast Thursday, analyst Rob Dibble talked about how he thinks the Nationals would be better served giving the money being discussed in the Stephen Strasburg situation to a veteran player who has a proven track record. You hear that and you wonder if Dibble is hearing the same thing others have been saying privately for a couple of weeks now, that there are real doubts about whether Washington can reach an agreement with the guy widely regarded as the best pitching prospect ever."

Posted by: comish4lif | August 7, 2009 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Ah, curz, I think you would enjoy Total Player Rating, as modified:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Total_player_rating

Unfortunately, I don't have a link to somewhere that measures it. I tend to lean on the Bill James side of the debate, so I usually pick VORP over TPR when I want a comprehensive number.

Just keep in mind that these are all inferential statistics. They take the classic stats, which are all based on observations, and they modify them using various constants based on (sometimes) over a century of results to try to interpret, so always make sure you do a check against someone you have a pretty good feel of, to see if the value differentiation makes sense. That won't mean that you or the stat is right, necessarily, just help you estimate whether that or another statistic is more valuable to you in your own understanding.

Also, poke around this website:
http://www.fangraphs.com/winss.aspx?team=Nationals&pos=all&stats=bat&qual=0&type=6&season=2009&month=0

They do inferential statistics real well, I think. They also have a glossary that's good for stimulating the mind to think about the best ways to measure things.

Posted by: Section506 | August 7, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

"506, I dont think that stat, Adjusted Batting Runs, incorporates defense."

Yes, you're right, and neither does VORP, but TPR does, or at least tries to.

I squirm away from a single statistic, because current defensive stats are so bad. Even UZR has some major flaws.

I think someone with 40 HR and over 100 RBI has to pretty much be hurling the ball into the left field pavilion after running around it on the grass six times in order to give up more runs than he allows, but quantifying it with a number is fairly satisfying. One major mistake I notice around here is the assumption that every ball misplayed or not gotten to by Dunn results in a run. In fact, most of them really only amount to more pitches to the pitcher, since it's only rarely that more than one ball even goes to left field in a single inning.

Posted by: Section506 | August 7, 2009 2:07 PM | Report abuse

*give up more runs than he creates

Posted by: Section506 | August 7, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

@flynnie2: No, silly, I'm not Bob Carpenter. You think Bob Carpenter is smart enough to call a ballgame and comment on this blog at the same time?

But come on down to the Eclipse sometime. You never know, you might run into me there.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Thanks comish... in other words a whole bunch of nothing. Nothing to do but wait out the final 10 days.

Posted by: RicketyCricket | August 7, 2009 2:09 PM | Report abuse

506 - all good points, but if curz is just trying to settle an argument with someone who insists that Dunn is a net negative, he needs a single number.

@ curz - if you are a BP subscriber, you can look up his WARP (wins above replacement player) which incorporates both offense and defense - Dunn's WARP1 is currently 3.2.

Alternatively, go here:

http://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.aspx?pos=all&stats=bat&lg=all&qual=y&type=6&season=2009&month=0

and sort by WAR (wins above replacement) and you'll see Dunn is at 1.6. Zimmerman, by the way, fifth in baseball at 5.0.

Posted by: Section220 | August 7, 2009 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Strasburg will sign! I assume the team is offering him more then the record amount that Prior received. But not anywhere near what Borass is asking for. Furthermore there is no way a young kid like that is going to turn down that kind of money. Just look at what is happening to Aaron Crow for example. The Royals are reportedly offering him less than the Nationals did LAST YEAR!

I will be at tonights game behind home plate wearing my custom Strasburg t-shirt. Let me know if you see me!!

Posted by: anyone1 | August 7, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

506 and 220: You guys realize it's a beautiful Friday afternoon, right? ;-)

Posted by: Bethesdangit | August 7, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Bethesdangit - wait, what? I'm in my mother's basement, there are no windows.

Posted by: Section220 | August 7, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

220, are you saying people don't pour over these numbers merely for fun?! In the bet-settling scenario, curz, 220 is right on. Fangraphs is rapidly becoming a daily site for me, there's so much thought-stimulation there.

Bethesdangit, stop rubbing it in!

Posted by: Section506 | August 7, 2009 2:18 PM | Report abuse

220 - Ha, yes, you are right, trying to settle an argument with a dumb Cubs fan.

Thanks

Posted by: curz | August 7, 2009 2:21 PM | Report abuse

"...trying to settle an argument with a dumb Cubs fan."
Is there any other kind? (sorry, I grew up a Cardinals fan and couldn't resist)

Posted by: twinbrook | August 7, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

@ Buster Olney says (posted by commish4lif):

I know Dibble's been fun on air and many on this site adore him, but I don't think he's a source for breaking rumors or news. He has some good perspective on the games and what's happening on the field, gmae strategy, etc. but I've never notice him ask about anything off the field like this. I would lean towards the "this could be nothing" part of Olney's statement.

Posted by: cheeseburger53 | August 7, 2009 2:25 PM | Report abuse

I also noticed Nyjer is 13th on that WAR list.. What a great addition.

Posted by: curz | August 7, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Regarding Dibble's comment - I'd guess that what he said is all about his own ideas and preferences and is not based on any insight or actual insider knowledge from the Nats front office.

Posted by: comish4lif | August 7, 2009 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Yeah let's not push Storen to the bigs just yet. He just got a taste of the difference between college hitters and minor league hitters. The step up to ML will be exponential. Anyone remember Shairon Martis meeting Albert Pujols? Talk about Christians vs. Lions. Let him go through a spring training to get a feel for what he will be facing. The upcoming schedule is way too daunting for a newly signed rookie -- Phillies, Mets, Braves, Marlins, Dodgers. Can only hope Mr. Strasburg has enough sense to listen to what Storen has to say. He will need more than a 100 MPH heater to survive wherever he goes.

Posted by: SackMan | August 7, 2009 2:31 PM | Report abuse

I'll be enjoying my beautiful Friday afternoon at the game this evening over an ice-cold VORP. Er...

cruz - I've actually had this same argument with a dumb Cubs fan and gotten all WARPy and WARy with him. He then dismissed my "weird numbers." So, I'm just alerting you to that possibility. Good luck.

Posted by: Section220 | August 7, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Ugh, I mean "curz," not "cruz."

Posted by: Section220 | August 7, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

"Regarding Dibble's comment - I'd guess that what he said is all about his own ideas and preferences and is not based on any insight or actual insider knowledge from the Nats front office."

ROB DIBBLE?!?! SPECULATING BASED ON NOTHING?!?!

Curz, you have to win the Cubs fans by romance. Logic won't work on anyone that cheers for a team that hasn't won a world series in over 100 years.

Posted by: Section506 | August 7, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

that fuzzy math will get you every time.

Posted by: longterm | August 7, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

And for anyone who complains about Debbi Taylor's questions being insipid, let's hear a few of Chico Harlan's questions to compare. We never do, though. All we see are the answers he gets.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome
____________________________________

Actually, we do hear Chico's questions if we watch the MASN postgame show. Debbie always gets to go first, but then other reporters ask questions. I've never met Chico, so I don't know his voice, but as I mentioned in my comment many hours ago, the other reporters' questions aren't much better. And you're right that the whole point, as I also said, is to ask openended questions to let the players or managers talk. I just think that Debbie could do more with her featured-first- question-asker spot than ask: "What did you think of Lannan tonight?" How about "What was behind your decision to pull Stammen at that particular moment? or Why did you let Lannan hit in the bottom of the 6th, or "What do you think about Belliard playing so far into right field that he couldn't throw out the hitter in the 4th"? These questions, when they get asked, are from other reporters.

Posted by: Section222 | August 7, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Looks like more outstanding weather for a ballgame. Remember all the rain of the spring? What a bizarre year in the District.

Posted by: GoNatsTerps | August 7, 2009 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Eclipse, just asking someone softball questions doesn't make anyone a reporter, else Larry King and David Letterman would be considered part of the working press. A reporter REPORTS events. Chico goes to the game and REPORTS to people who didn't see it what happened there. Granted, it's not Woodward and Bernstein, but it's a far remove from asking Ryan Zimmerman if he was thinking about hitting for the cycle. Debbi's job isn't to report events; it's to feed easy questions to baseball players for the viewers' entertainment.

I like Debbi as much as the next guy (okay, not if the next guy is her husband), but let's not suggest she's something that she isn't.

Posted by: gilbertbp | August 7, 2009 2:50 PM | Report abuse

> I just think that Debbie could do more with her featured-first- question-asker spot than ask: "What did you think of Lannan tonight?"

Of course. Many of us could do a better job than we do, couldn't we?

gilbertbp, just because Debbi Taylor's not a particularly good reporter doesn't mean she's not a reporter. Her employer is willing to pay her to do the job she's doing, and the Nats and their opponents are willing to give her press credentials to do the job she's doing. Ergo, she's a reporter. Just like Chico, she goes to the game and REPORTS to people who didn't see it what happened there - although sometimes she is reporting to people at the same time they're seeing it. That's the nature of live TV reporting. Just because you don't like the way she does her job doesn't mean she's not doing it.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

220 and 506,

Seriously, Cubs fans are dillusional. I keep having to hear about the glory years back between '04 and '08.. "Good god!" I reply, "your grandparents weren't even born yet!"

Posted by: curz | August 7, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

And here's another thought. It seems that Debbi Taylor's equivalent on the Orioles side of MASN asks questions that are not as simplistic or softball as the questions Debbi Taylor asks. Does that make Amber Theoharis a reporter while Debbi Taylor is not?

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

I remember seeing a record at a store in Chicago that was "Great Moments in Cubs History"... and it was a 45 (for those of us old enough to remember what those are).

Posted by: twinbrook | August 7, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

My other reply to Cubs fans when they make fun of the Nationals record:

"Just give them 96 more years. If they haven't won one by then you can talk."

Posted by: curz | August 7, 2009 3:19 PM | Report abuse

If Buster Olney believes Dibbles comments on the signing, or non-signing, of Strasberg even remotely reflect the position of Nats management then he is a complete idiot. Going back to his show on XM Dibble is known for his opnions based on his own personal beliefs and experience. This is a case of the 24/7 news cycle needing to be fed. Of course Nats management is probalby not pleased with Dibble's comments but hey, he's a color commentator and that's what you get. Personally, I agree with Dibble 100%, if the guy is so money hungry let him walk and spend the money on a pitcher that has actually dome something at the ML level to merit a paycheck.

Posted by: SackMan | August 7, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Forgot to give Dibble props for calling the Nat's comeback yesterday. When they were down 6-0 his only concern was that when the Nat's took the lead they wouldn't be able to use MacDougal as a closer.

Posted by: SackMan | August 7, 2009 3:29 PM | Report abuse

-----NEW POST---------------

Posted by: comish4lif | August 7, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Add Carpy to ABM's list of presumed 'opponents.' Add all of the guys on this blog. And add the females as well (sigh). As ABM knows, Chico is a gastronomy afficianado and reporter, while the BIG BM himself is a short (ha!) order cook, whose gastronomic AND language skills are sadly, predictably embarrasingly dreadful. Pulitzer in Chico's future, GERD in a BM's?

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

@flynnie2: No, silly, I'm not Bob Carpenter. You think Bob Carpenter is smart enough to call a ballgame and comment on this blog at the same time?
Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse

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

I bet Debbi Taylor knows as much if not more about what's going on with Stephen Strasburg as Chico Harlan does. What does that say about the relative worth of Debbi Taylor and Chico Harlan?
Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | August 7, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

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

I'm sure that most of you know that this poster is nunof1/ABM (or as my British Mum would say: a BM., 'please, deahh; before we leave on our trip, use the toilet.').

FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome is a sad excuse for a male, one who feels the need to constantly compete (unsuccessfully) with Chico Harlan, Tom Boswell, Dan Steinberg, Dave Sheinin, Mike Wise, or any other more talented, more intelligent, more successful guy than he. Animal Planet features countless male animals who charge, and tilt, and pursue one another, as they try to prove dominance.

ABM, by the way, is a cook in a diner at lunchtime; he mounts tires (not females) in the evening at Costco for $11.50/hour. Not Alpha nor Beta; not Gamma, but a Zeta male? Yup.

Posted by: nova_g_man | August 7, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: nova_g_man | August 7, 2009 5:39 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company