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Play-By-Play of Strasburg's AFL Debut

If you do a Google News search for "Stephen Strasburg," the top headlines vary only in their verbs. "Strasburg wins his professional debut." "Strasburg dazzles in professional debut." "Strasburg shines in pro debut in Arizona Fall League." "Strasburg pitches the best game in baseball history in pro debut."

(OK, I made that last one up.)

Anyway, I'll just make way for the facts. Strasburg's final line from Friday night: 3-1/3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 50 pitches, 32 strikes. He hit 99 mph with his first pitch, and picked up the win on account of the generous AFL scoring rules.

Here's the play-by-play, passed along by Nats PR man John Dever.

Inning 1 - 19 pitches
6-3 groundout (full count)
K swinging
K swinging

Inning 2 - 14 pitches
Walk (8 pitches)
6-4-3 DP (Buster Posey batting)
3U groundout

Inning 3 - 11 pitches
1-3 comebacker
single to LF (line drive)
6-4-3 DP

Inning 4 - 6 pitches
Solid single to CF (Jose Tabata batting)
6-3 fielder's choice
> removed from game

By Chico Harlan  |  October 17, 2009; 4:36 PM ET
 
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Comments

Next stop- Cooperstown!

Posted by: thegraneys | October 17, 2009 5:26 PM | Report abuse

That's more likely than "Next stop, Hagerstown!"

Posted by: kevincostello | October 17, 2009 6:25 PM | Report abuse

Gotta work a Natstown in there somewhere, too.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 17, 2009 6:37 PM | Report abuse

a more detailed account of his pitch chart from ESPN (including speeds from this guy's gun).

First inning

• First batter (Jose Tabata): 99 ball, 97 ball, 96 called (strike), 98 called, 84 foul, 99 ball, 97 foul, 98 groundout
• Second batter (Brandon Crawford): 97 called, 90 swinging, 98 ball, 91 swinging, strikeout
• Third batter (Domonic Brown): 97 called, 96 foul, 82 ball, 82 ball, 97 foul, 97 ball, 88 swinging, strikeout

Second inning
• First batter (Brandon Allen): 95 ball, 94 ball, 96 foul, 90 swinging, 97 foul, 83 foul, 97 ball, 97 ball
• Second batter (Buster Posey): 95 swinging, 95 ball, 80 ball, 94 ground-ball double-play
• Third batter (Steve Susdorf): 89 swinging, 97 groundout

Third inning

• First batter (Darin Holcomb): 96 ball, 96 foul, 82 called, 98 foul, 96 groundout
• Second batter (Thomas Neal): 98 swinging, 97 called, 97 ball, 84 line-drive single
• Third batter (Chase d'Arnaud): 94 called, 94 ground-ball double-play

Fourth inning

• First batter (Jose Tabata): 95 ball, 95 line-drive single
• Second batter (Brandon Crawford): 92 ball, 94 ball, 94 foul, 93, ground-ball force out

Posted by: sec231 | October 17, 2009 7:36 PM | Report abuse

Chico, you're slacking.

Great report, sec231. Got a link?

Posted by: inthestreetindustry | October 17, 2009 7:40 PM | Report abuse

Very excited by this start. He doesn't need to strike everyone out; like 99 at the top and 99 at the bottom. Not too many starters in the league throwing that kind of heat.

Posted by: tboss | October 17, 2009 7:50 PM | Report abuse

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/blog/index?entryID=4569569&name=grey_jason

but all of the good stuff is an insider link, so you'd need insider to read it all.

Posted by: sec231 | October 17, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse

MLB.com story on SS quotes an anonymous scout as saying SS should be opening day starter for Nats because "he's better than anything they've got right now."

Take that, John Lannan. And I tend to agree. If there's ever a case for force-feeding a kid, this is it.

Posted by: Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me | October 17, 2009 9:22 PM | Report abuse

Hands down, best headline out there this morning was on the Nationals Enquirer blog:

"Strasburg survives first AFL start, $15 million arm still attached."

http://www.nationalsenquirer.com/2009/10/stephen-strasburg-survives-first-afl-start-with-arm-still-intact-attached.html

Funny that for such a "big" story in town, the best the WaPo could do was an AP wire story posted tonight online around 7:00. .. and this post at what, 4:36 PM?

We understand, though. There's a Skins game tomorrow and all.

Posted by: GavinDC | October 17, 2009 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Funny that for such a "big" story in town, the best the WaPo could do was an AP wire story posted tonight online around 7:00. .. and this post at what, 4:36 PM?
*****************************************

There's a reason for this. Just look at the Posted by: line below.

Also, someone yesterday posted about how Ryan Zimmerman told the BALTIMORE SUN that he would like Riggleman to stay on as manager. Wow, the WaPo is getting scooped by our neighbors to the north. Ugh.

Posted by: thepostischeap | October 17, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

I really hate the Yankees, in case anyone is still up and cares.

Posted by: thepostischeap | October 18, 2009 12:54 AM | Report abuse

It's not that we don't care, tpic, is that it doesn't matter much. That's part of the beauty of the game, really.

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | October 18, 2009 1:13 AM | Report abuse

"In hindsight, the deal crippled the Expos franchise, and explains much about why the team arrived in Washington with a barren farm system. Phillips, the best-regarded prospect of the three at the time of the deal, has developed into a 30-30 second baseman with Cincinnati. Sizemore has become an all-star outfielder with Cleveland. Lee, despite some inconsistencies, has won 14 or more games four times since 2005. In that span, the Nationals have had four double-digit winning seasons total by pitchers, two of them from less-than-luminaries such as Tim Redding (10, in 2008) and Ramon Ortiz (11, in 2006)." This does not mention that Jason Bay was given to Pittsburgh the same year. Alot of the frustrations of what we have been missing, Second Baseman, Centerfielder, #1 starter and another power bat in the field were already in the organization.

Posted by: Enrico1 | October 18, 2009 3:32 AM | Report abuse

Matter shmatter. Boooo Yankees! :-D

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 18, 2009 8:12 AM | Report abuse

I see that the Desert Dogs ripped off their fourth straight win last night - 11-2 over the Suprise Rafters. Espinosa & Marrero both started for the DD, while Wilkie & Mandel threw in relief.

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Nice, BinM. At 4-1, their current W-L percentage is .800, with a two-game lead in the AFL East. Looks like they surprised (!) the Rafters last night, handing them their first loss.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 18, 2009 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Looks like Marrero is hitting the ball well & taking walks; Espinosa seems to be struggling at the plate, but turned 3DP's last night. I'm hoping that Rooney gets some playing time in the coming week - It would be nice to read how he handles Strasburg (I think he's caught everyone else in the minors).

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

I think a real newspaper would assign a reporter to follow Strasburg around 24/7 and post tweets every 10 minutes (with supplements as appropriate). But no, all we get is the Redskins.

Posted by: markfromark | October 18, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

markfro: I still wonder about the resource allocation from time to time - How many writers does it take to adequately cover one football team?

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Does anyone want to put odds / rankings on the Houston Astros' magerial hire? Here are the 10 candidates...
Dave Clark - Current interim Mgr. w/HOU.
Al Pedrique - Current MiLB co-ordinator w/HOU.
Ned Yost - Former Mgr.(MIL).
Randy Ready - Interim hitting coach (SD); Previously MiLB Mgr. in SD system.
Bob Melvin - Former MLB Mgr.(AZ).
Manny Acta - Former MLB Mgr.(WSH); Previously Mgr/coach/player in HOU MiLB system.
Phil Garner - Former MLB Mgr.(MIL/DET/HOU).
Pete Mackinin - Current bench coach (PHI); Served as interim Mgr for PIT (2005) & CIN(2007). Former WSH draft pick (rd 4-1969).
Brad Mills - Current bench coach (BOS). Former MTL draft pick (rd 17- 1979)
Tim Bogar - Current 1B coach (BOS); Former HOU IF (1997-2000).

I think they might go with experience over another rookie, given the problems with Cooper, so I've got it as:
1) Melvin - 3/2
2) Yost - 3/1
3) Mackinin - 7/2
4) Clark - 4/1
5) Garner - 5/1
6) Acta - 7/1
7) Mills - 9/1
8) Ready - 10/1
9) Bogar - 10/1
10) Pedrique - 10/1

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 2:27 PM | Report abuse

"markfro: I still wonder about the resource allocation from time to time - How many writers does it take to adequately cover one football team?"

The question really is how many writers does it take to cover one inadequate football team?

Posted by: nunof1 | October 18, 2009 2:56 PM | Report abuse

nunof: On average, clearly more than a good one.

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

"markfro: I still wonder about the resource allocation from time to time - How many writers does it take to adequately cover one football team?"

"Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009'

That franchise once again prominently features the most mercurial, 'anger management needed', nutcase owner in the NFL. No one knows what is going to happen next with Snyder in charge and no Joe Gibbs with Superbowl trophies behind him to stop him. He's a rabid out-of-control 10 year old fan who actually owns an NFL franchise.

Of course there's news in that! And in the carcass he has created (the Redskins) for the vultures (the media) to swoop in on.

Posted by: periculum | October 18, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse

peric: Go ahead & post your 3:56PM on RI - It has no relivance here.

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 4:04 PM | Report abuse

I wouldn't mind a little more AFL coverage. It is our top prospects, after all.

But I do not, repeat DO NOT, want a reporter following SS around. That would turn me away from the Post and this journal pretty quickly I think.

But I get your point. Coverage is, ahem, lacking.

Posted by: NatsNut | October 18, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Right now, I want every sportswriter at the post to cover the Redskins.

It's hilarious!

Posted by: JohninMpls | October 18, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

has zorn been fired yet?

Posted by: leetee1955 | October 18, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

JiM: Yeah, theDanny is really pushing the Lerners' for laughingstock rights on a national level at this point; Hope he wins ('cause all of us here know how much theDanny wants to win).

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Back to baseball for a minute; Did anybody notice how Riggleman hasn't appeared on any of the interview lists for MLB openings, other than in DC? File that under "things that make you go h-mmm".

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Hey Gang...just a quick note. Who'dda thunk that we have more realistic hope for the future than that OTHER franchise in town? You know, the one that monopolizes all the media coverage...and boy, if the Slow Lerners are as good at business as is claimed, they'll smell a HUGE opportunity here! The Mariners did it.....
Go NATS!!!!

Posted by: zendo | October 18, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

I don't know. I'm just glad that they're covering the AFL. I don't mind that it's because of Strasburg. If his presence also means more coverage for the team he starts the season with (assuming that it's not the ML club), I'm all for it.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 18, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

I don't think he's in danger of being overwhelmed by coverage in DC. Not while that pointy-ball team is still around. :-D

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 18, 2009 5:16 PM | Report abuse

The Skins do point out something important about this area. If you are good for a short while, and win some championships, the fan base will milk it for many years and stay loyal.

Personally, I couldn't give up my lifelong distaste for the Skins as a Giants fan. There was no DC baseball team to despise as a kid, so I was easily able to shift loyalties to the Nats as my home team. I may have only been here since 1990, but this is where I started my family.

+1/2St.

Posted by: kevincostello | October 18, 2009 5:46 PM | Report abuse

zendo: Contrary to popular belief, there are "other" professional teams to follow in D.C.; Beyond our favorite (the Nationals), and the WaPo's favorite (the Deadskins), there is still basketball (Wizards & Mystics), hockey (Capitals), and "real" football[soccer] (United).

In fact, the DC area might be currently overburdened with options, since the regional colleges also demand eyes. Between UMD, UMD-Balt, Bowie St, Towson St, Johns Hopkins, Navy, Georgetown, AU, UDC, GMU, VA-Tech, U-VA, JMU, Richmond, & Liberty, there is a lot of NCAA activity out there as well.

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

+1/2St: Your point about the football team seems on-target; Wins (& championships) over a short course of time breeds fan loyalty. Should the Nationals be able to eventually turn the ship around, then they too will recieve that type of devotion.

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 6:02 PM | Report abuse

Back to baseball for a minute; Did anybody notice how Riggleman hasn't appeared on any of the interview lists for MLB openings, other than in DC? File that under "things that make you go h-mmm".

Posted by: BinM | October 18, 2009 5:09 PM |

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

BinM, that's a very good point. It could mean Riggleman really wants to stay here and is sending that message to Rizzo by not interviewing elsewhere. Or it could mean he knows something to give him confidence he doesn't need to interview. Or it could mean nobody has asked him to interview.

Posted by: NatsNut | October 18, 2009 6:25 PM | Report abuse

....Also, someone yesterday posted about how Ryan Zimmerman told the BALTIMORE SUN that he would like Riggleman to stay on as manager. Wow, the WaPo is getting scooped by our neighbors to the north. Ugh."
Posted by: thepostischeap | October 17, 2009 10:57 PM
**************************

We're about 12 hours late to the party, but in fact, Zim didn't say anything of the sort to the Baltimore Sun or any other news outlet. As far as we can tell, someone at The Sporting News online misattributed a few Rizzo quotes from earlier in the week to Zimmerman, and *VOILA!* Zimmerman is suddenly out there endorsing Riggleman in the papers...via...The Baltimore Sun? Doesn't absolve the WaPo for sending Traceeee Hamilton out to the desert for the AZ Fall League, but only long enough to miss Strasburg's debut, but what can you do? DC is more of a baseball town than it gets credit for, it's just that the biggest paper in town hasn't figured that out yet.

We highlighted the non-endorsement-of-Riggleman non-story here, if you're interested:
http://www.nationalsenquirer.com/2009/10/just-for-the-record-zim-didnt-endorse-riggles-for-manager.html

Oh, and Go Dodgers!

Posted by: TheNationalsEnquirer | October 18, 2009 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Reading this blog is like reading the WaPo. All Redskins, all the time! I guess I see why the Post covers them so heavily.

Posted by: Section314 | October 18, 2009 9:24 PM | Report abuse

For all those wanting to anoint Strasburg as opening day starter, apparently MLB.com writer just went into stands and said "Hey, anyone a scout?" and interviewed the first joker who said yes. As evidenced locally, par for the course.

Baseball America writers know who the real scouts are and are known to them. Here's their report: (http://www.baseballamerica.com/blog/prospects/?p=6838)
=====
BA spoke to a veteran pro and amateur scout and received his assessment on Strasburg’s outing.

According to one scout, Strasburg threw hard but wasn’t missing a lot of bats. “He topped out at 97-98 (mph) in the first and second inning, then was lower in the third at 95,” the scout said. “He was up in the zone a lot and gave up a lot of foul balls. When he’s down in the zone he gets good sinking action. That’s where he got his two strikeouts.” . . .

The scout continued, “His 82-83 curve wasn’t as sharp as I’ve seen it before. He was casting the curve, and Thomas Neal (Giants) got a hit off of that pitch. I thought his slider, at 87-88, was his better breaking ball tonight.”

Jose Tabata (Pirates) gave Strasburg trouble all night, working a walk early on and then doubling to right-center field in the third inning. . . .

From a mechanical standpoint, the scout stated that Strasburg “gets a little forward with his arm and hand in his delivery. Also, his elbow gets closed up on top. I’m a little worried about his ability to drive downward all the time. He throws so hard and gets such ride and carry on his fastball, he can throw it up in the zone and get away with it. There are a few little red flags and he needs to clean up his delivery a bit. But the positives outweigh the negatives.”

On a long-term basis, the scout sees Strasburg as “a sort of righthanded Dave Righetti. No doubt he’ll begin his career as a No. 1 starter, but later on I can see him being a power closer.”

Posted by: VladiHondo | October 19, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Former Nats coaches in the news: a Cleveland Plain Dealer item on the MLB trade rumors site suggests that Acta could be among the finalists for the Indians' managerial position. He's also interviewed with the Astros. Another item, from the Sun Sentinel, suggests that the Marlins may be interested in St. Claire as a pitching coach.

In other news, Elwood asked whether somebody could please wake him up when the championship and world series games are over. zzzz....

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

Could the reason why Riggleman isn't mentioned is because, if someone is still currently employed (he's still interim mgr until he becomes permanent or another takes his place), no one can talk to them until after the WS?! I thought that was the policy. I know other current hires have been mentioned in rumors but I don't think officially.

Tracie, correct me if I'm wrong.

Posted by: CALSGR8 | October 19, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

Okay, who will get their next win first, the Redskins or the Nats? You have to like the Redskins' chances of reverse-running the table.

Posted by: gilbertbp | October 19, 2009 10:35 AM | Report abuse

I'm highly skeptical of the "scout" quoted in VladiHondo's post. As 231's excellent post shows, Tabata didn't walk in his first PA, and didn't double in his second. Based on quotes from Strasburg, I'm reading the 92-94 pitches as his "sinker," which induced two double-plays, and the 96-99 readings as his four-seamer.

He actually did "miss a lot of bats" too. I count seven swinging strikes out of 25 swings. That's a 72% contact rate. It's a very small sample, but the MLB leader last season (J. Vazquez) had a 73.3% contact rate.

Thanks, again 231. I think there's a lot of information to be gathered from your post.

Posted by: jcj5y | October 19, 2009 10:39 AM | Report abuse

Wow. Thanks for that report, VladiHondo. I am so glad to be hearing the guy is human.

I'm learning quick in this baseball-fan business that extremes are never good.

Posted by: NatsNut | October 19, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

I believe that the rule about not talking to those who are currently employed applies only to teams that are still in it (i.e., staff of the Angels, Dodgers, Phillies, and Yankees).

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Also, someone yesterday posted about how Ryan Zimmerman told the BALTIMORE SUN that he would like Riggleman to stay on as manager. Wow, the WaPo is getting scooped by our neighbors to the north. Ugh.

Posted by: thepostischeap | October 17, 2009 10:57 PM

-------------------------------

Turns out to have been a non-story but even if it had been a scoop, it's just things coming full circle. The Post scooped the Sun on Cal Ripken's retirement, after all.

As they say, sometimes you get the bear and sometimes the bear gets you.

Posted by: greggwiggins | October 19, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Gawd! Are we facing a Phillies/Yankees World Series? If so, is it possible to root for a rule change that meant neither team would win?

Posted by: greggwiggins | October 19, 2009 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Don't know about the rule change, but it's possible not to watch the games. I just might go there if it ends up being a PHI/NYY series. I tuned into last night's game briefly but decided to watch something else before my head exploded.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

as far as whether riggleman is free to negotiate with another team, i'm not sure how that rule goes.

if he was in the NFL, he would *not* be allowed to negotiate because it would be a lateral move, not a promotion, if he is still under contract.

i would think baseball would have similar rules to keep teams from poaching other teams' senior staff.

so the question is... is riggleman still under contract? if he is, i would suspect that, technically, no other team could negotiate with him without permission from the nationals.

Posted by: sec231 | October 19, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Last year Riggleman accepted the bench coach job with the Nationals even while he was still technically the interim manager of the Mariners, i.e. they had not hired a permanent manager yet and had not informed him that he was out of the running for that job. He was quoted recently as saying he's content to wait for the Nats manager search to play itself out and will not be seeking other jobs in the interim like he did last year.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 19, 2009 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Don't know about the rule change, but it's possible not to watch the games. I just might go there if it ends up being a PHI/NYY series. I tuned into last night's game briefly but decided to watch something else before my head exploded.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse
***************************************

If that's the case, it is possible for both teams to lose? Count me in for not watching either.

Posted by: BGinVA | October 19, 2009 12:32 PM | Report abuse

You know, if it wasn't for MLB, that would have been the Nats that Cliff Lee was pitching for in the playoffs.

Posted by: swang30 | October 19, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

What's with all the presumptive anti-Yankees comments, as if we all hate the Yankees and the reasons for it are obvious? It reeks of a small-town attitude; maybe KC and Pittsburgh fans all agree that the Yankees are the big bad Evil Empire and they all hate them because they play in a big market and can sign free agents to big contracts, but why here? The Nats are actually a big market team, notwithstanding that the Lerners would like us to ignore that fact.

Hating the Phils on the other hand, as a division rival, is understandable.

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | October 19, 2009 1:44 PM | Report abuse

CoverageisLacking, I call your attention to Douglass Wallop's 1954 novel "The Year the Yankees Lost the Pennant" and the stage and film musical adaptations of that book under the title "Damn Yankees". More than half a century later, strongly disliking the Yankees remains a long and honorable tradition in these parts.

The Phillies are a more recent object of equal disdain, but I don't think the bounds of decency would let me type the obvious and alliterative title for that sequel musical.

Posted by: greggwiggins | October 19, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

You have a fair point gregwiggins, but from my standpoint I'd rather not perpetuate a hatred that is simply borne out of the DC team always being lousy and the Yankees always winning, as was the case during the era of "Damn Yankees." As I said, that smacks of KC or Pittsburgh. Better that any hatred be borne out of mutual rivalry and dislike.

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | October 19, 2009 2:44 PM | Report abuse

CoverageIsLacking, we hate the Yankees here because they are not our team. We hate all teams who are not our team, the only difference being the degree to which we hate them. The Yankees are at the moment on top of the heap, therefore we hate them the most, save for teams like the Phillies who are on the top of the heap in our very own divsion. That is why we hate them. Well, that and because they and their fans are insufferable. Perhaps you should begin to hate the Yankees as well, lest folks around here start calling you insufferable too.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 19, 2009 2:51 PM | Report abuse

CiL, you also must remember that the yankees were a rival of the original senators, who were an AL team. there are plenty of reasons to dislike the yankees. it's not a "small market/big market" thing. even other big market teams' fans dislike them. the yankees are pretty much a "love em or hate em" team.

Posted by: sec231 | October 19, 2009 3:00 PM | Report abuse

FTETPTBCCH, that really doesn't answer the important question, though: "was he still under contract?"

just because he was interim manager *during* the season doesn't mean he's still bound to seattle (or in our case, DC), if his contract didn't extend beyond the end of the season.

if he was on a one year contract and was made "interim manager" without extending his contract, then he was not under contract after the last day of his team's season (unless his contract stipulated a later date). so if his contract expired, then he was a free agent. i don't know what his contract situation is here, whether he was signed for two years as bench coach and elevated to manager, thus having him still under contract today, or if it was a one year contract and he became a free agent after the last game of the season.

Posted by: sec231 | October 19, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

sec231, even if Riggleman's bench coach contract runs beyond this season, he would not be prohibited from talking with other teams about manager jobs because that would be considered a promotion for him. And it has to be presumed that his contract as bench coach extended only through the 2009 season, since Acta's 2010 option was never picked up and they would not hire a coaching staff for 2010 before having a manager under contract. Only dysfunctional teams like the Redskins hire their lower-level coaches first before they hire the top guy.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 19, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone doubt that Rizzo is waiting to talk to Mattingly? I hope so. Maybe bring in Dave Duncan as the pitching coach. Nothing against McCatty, but if you can get a top notch guy, you've got to try.

As for the Yankees, can't we still be pissed at them for grabbing Tex? Good a reason as any. But I definitely hate the Phillies much more - interdivision rival and all.

Also, it looks like Stephen Drew is on the market and I do believe Rizzo drafted him. Something to keep an eye on.

Espinosa's batting second this afternoon for the Desert Dogs, fyi.

Posted by: sec307 | October 19, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

I find that there is a lot to admire about the Yankees - it is a well-run organization that we would all do well to emulate. Further, this year the team seems to really be a team and supporting each other, a far cry from those schizophrenic years when Steinbrenner weighed in far too much - especially the repeated firing and re-hiring of Billy Martin. Having said this, it is largely not home-grown and is just the best that money can buy (and is finally playing that way)- it ought to be good.

What really gets to me is how much fawning the announcers do over the Yankees - seems to me at this level they ought to be neutral, not homeboys, and I certainly hope there are a lot of little vignettes tonight about Angel successes, as we saw re the Yankees for the two games played in New York.

What I am truly greatful for is that the Angels beat the Red Sox - if the Yankees were playing the Red Sox the situation would have been overwhelmingly insufferable.

I think there is a lot to like about the Phillies - they play hard all the time, as we know so well - and assuming they get by the Dodgers I think will give the Yankees (assuming they win) one heck of a fight, that they may win.

Posted by: Traveler8 | October 19, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Traveler8, I agree; "there is a lot to like about the Phillies" -- that's if we're talking about the team itself. My problem is with the boorish and even thuggish behavior of too many Phillies Phans, which is an embarrassment to that team and that city.

Posted by: greggwiggins | October 19, 2009 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Not sure whether my own contribution is lumped into the statement about presumptive anti-Yankee comments, but if so, then CiL read something into my post that was not there. My comments related to my own disdain for the two teams in question (well, and to the comments of the person to whom I was responding). I have my reasons for disliking the teams in question, but I don't feel a need to defend or explain my reasons here and now. If my contribution was not lumped into the statement, then, to quote Ms. Litella yet again, never mind. :-)

---

What's with all the presumptive anti-Yankees comments, as if we all hate the Yankees and the reasons for it are obvious?

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

grateful

Posted by: Traveler8 | October 19, 2009 3:44 PM | Report abuse

LOL, Traveler! You beat the proofreaders to the punch.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Not to mention the way that the team handled the whole Brett Myers wife-beating incident in Boston. Oh, I guess I just did mention it.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Completely OT, but I thought some of you would enjoy this:

CUPERTINO, CA (The Borowitz Report) - Amid fears that publicity-starved parents may try to convince unwitting viewers that they have launched giant balloons with their children inside, Apple today introduced a new iPhone app that detects balloon hoaxes. The app, called iBalloon, enables the user to point the iPhone at a balloon overhead to determine whether or not there is a child inside. In other news, Merriam-Webster, the dictionary company, said that the word "balloon" is now an acceptable verb, meaning "f*#k with." The online dictionary offers this example of the new verb: "You come home at 3 AM and say you were at work all that time - are you ballooning me?" Elsewhere, Afghan president Hamid Zarkai was accused of ballooning the recent presidential election. 

Posted by: BobLHead | October 19, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Also, re: Stephen Drew, good point 307. The DBs are reportly seeking young pitching in return. With Desmond and Espinosa in the system, I'm not sure I would give up a top prospect for him. But what about one of our near-MLB ready AAA guys (none of whom have a high ceiling) and a lower-tier prospect? Shairon Martis and Colton Willems, just to throw something out there? Would we take that?

Posted by: BobLHead | October 19, 2009 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Traveler, don't knock yourself. I'd say you're pretty greatful. hee hee

Posted by: NatsNut | October 19, 2009 5:00 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the shout out, NN!

Posted by: Traveler8 | October 19, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Maybe coming soon to Camden Yards with the Indians?

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=4577205

Posted by: leetee1955 | October 19, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

307, BobL: S. Drew would certainly be worth asking about, in my book. He'll be 27 in the spring, & is entering his arbitration years (3+years). With a .771 career OPS and a 3.78P/PA, he'd fit into either the #2 or #7 slot in the batting order. The question would be, how much would AZ want in return?

Posted by: BinM | October 19, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

Well, it seems leetee "scooped" me on Acta's 2nd interview with CLE. There is this, from the article..."Acta has experience dealing with young players and has been through a rebuilding project before, two attributes that could make him appealing to the Indians. Cleveland is considered to have more talent than Washington and could bounce back next season because it plays in one of baseball's weaker divisions".

Even though the piece ran under an espn.com news service heading, with additional credit to the AP, that last paragraph stinks of KLaw's opinion.

Posted by: BinM | October 19, 2009 5:37 PM | Report abuse

ahem

---

Former Nats coaches in the news: a Cleveland Plain Dealer item on the MLB trade rumors site suggests that Acta could be among the finalists for the Indians' managerial position. He's also interviewed with the Astros. Another item, from the Sun Sentinel, suggests that the Marlins may be interested in St. Claire as a pitching coach.

In other news, Elwood asked whether somebody could please wake him up when the championship and world series games are over. zzzz....

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 10:09 AM |

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 5:44 PM | Report abuse

1a1: Possum's don't hibernate - Wake his furry little butt up & get him on the scout team, looking for good rumours to discuss. If Chico & Tracee won't feed us regularly, we have to scrounge on our own.

Posted by: BinM | October 19, 2009 6:01 PM | Report abuse

I just scraped this from Cleveland's mlb.com page - Manny Acta will be interviewed formally tomorrow (10/20), as part of the final 3-5 candidate "short-list" for the open Manager's position. Additional candidates are reported to include Bobby Valentine, and Travis Fryman.

Posted by: BinM | October 19, 2009 6:17 PM | Report abuse

You heard the man, Elwood. Get out there and rustle up some scuttlebutt!

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 6:19 PM | Report abuse

A few points-

1. I hate the Yankees because I grew up a Mets fan, and you don't know arrogance until you have listened to a Yankees fan.

2. I really wanted Valentine as our manager, but that seems not to be happening, and I don't clamor to be someone's second pick. Hate Yankees though I do, Don Mattingly was always all class, and impossible to hate. Honestly, we could use some marquee, and Mattingly still must have the hunger for his first real ring.

3. The tanking of the Redskins could actually help the Nats. Small solace for those of you who follow the Skins.

3. I don't want to wish away time, but I will enjoy when this season is done. We need to start the cleansing.

+1/2St.

Posted by: kevincostello | October 19, 2009 7:05 PM | Report abuse

Sounds like Manny Acta could be the man(ager) of the hour this offseason. Jim Riggleman, maybe not so much.

Posted by: nunof1 | October 19, 2009 8:40 PM | Report abuse

+1/2St.: You sir, have clearly estabished a love for the underdog (Mets, now Nats), yet suffer through the current turmoil of an affection built from the successes of the past (the 'skins).

You must learn to let go yet again, much as you did with you youthful infatuation with the Mets. Any continuation of a relationship with another sport franchise who has scorned you so completely will only lead to years of therapy, along with the occaisional rant on RI that eventually leads to you getting blocked for the WaPo web-blogs.

Kevin, I wish you health, and hope that you reach a decision you can live with in the long-term.

Posted by: BinM | October 19, 2009 8:50 PM | Report abuse

Where did we hear this idea before, of Strasburg as a closer? Hmmmm...?
*****************
On a long-term basis, the scout sees Strasburg as “a sort of righthanded Dave Righetti. No doubt he’ll begin his career as a No. 1 starter, but later on I can see him being a power closer.”
Posted by: VladiHondo | October 19, 2009 9:37 AM

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | October 19, 2009 8:56 PM | Report abuse

And without taking sides, internally, I just say it's cultural. We have a classic musical devoted to the theme, so who's surprised?

Posted by: Sec3mysofa | October 19, 2009 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Very nice blogside manner, BinM.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 19, 2009 10:20 PM | Report abuse

The Phils and the Yanks would be great although the media would love a LA-NY series for obvious reasons, a Phils,Yanks series would be more than watchable count me in.

Posted by: dargregmag | October 19, 2009 10:26 PM | Report abuse

Hey,

I've posted some new analysis of the Nats on my blog,

http://fixingthenats.wordpress.com/

Today I looked at what the Nats should do about the SS position and Cristian Guzman.

Please let me know what you think.

Posted by: rnkorby | October 19, 2009 11:52 PM | Report abuse

Sounds like Manny Acta could be the man(ager) of the hour this offseason. Jim Riggleman, maybe not so much.

Posted by: nunof1 | October 19, 2009 8:40 PM |

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

huh? I've read this 10 times and still don't get it. Manny has an interview or two. How in the world does that make him the man of the hour?

Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 12:10 AM | Report abuse

NatsNut, that comment makes sense to me. Acta is on the short list for everyone's manager opening (except the Nats), meanwhile Riggleman has no interviews anywhere and has totally disappeared from view. Everyone wants to Acta-vate, but no one has Rigglemania.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 20, 2009 7:27 AM | Report abuse

I'm needing a fresh posting here. There is much news and gossip about the Astros and Indians managerial search, but nothing coming out of DC that I have spotted. Are the reporters in those other cities really that much better than our own intrepid reporters?

:)

Posted by: natbiscuits | October 20, 2009 8:15 AM | Report abuse

Harlan? Boswell? Bueller? Bueller? Anyone?

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 20, 2009 8:24 AM | Report abuse

Everyone wants to Acta-vate, but no one has Rigglemania.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 20, 2009 7:27 AM

*********

Really? Everyone? Don't be silly. Try two teams. And from what I've read around here, he's only on the sort-of short list for one. That's hardly "everyone" clamoring for him.


Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 8:52 AM | Report abuse

hey Gang.....I 2nd that motion, Biscotti. It's too early for me to expound....I wanna read-although both games were great last night.
Go Nats....

Posted by: zendo | October 20, 2009 8:59 AM | Report abuse

According to the Houston Chronicle, Manny was 1 of 10 interviewing for the Astros job and 1 of 10 for the Indians job. He passed the first interview with the Indians, but as many as 5 others did too.

Manny's a great guy and I'm sure he'll get one of those two jobs. But again, everyone is not clamoring for him.

That is all.

Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 8:59 AM | Report abuse

"Really? Everyone? Don't be silly. Try two teams. And from what I've read around here, he's only on the sort-of short list for one. That's hardly "everyone" clamoring for him.

Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 8:52 AM | Report abuse"

Three teams have manager openings. Astros, Indians, Nats. Two have interviewed Acta, none have interviewed Riggleman. Do the math.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 20, 2009 9:22 AM | Report abuse

Hooray, Strasburg, best pitcher ever! Seriously, this is good news. After years of hyping people who didn't pan out or are on a longer road to success, that the relief alone feels like victory.

It was also so good that I was briefly allowed to interrupt my wedding reception to get the run down. And my red-headed, Cubs-fan wife took a minute to listen too!

Posted by: Section506 | October 20, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Congratulations on the nuptials, 506, and here's wishing you a long and happy union!

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 20, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Seconds on the Congratulations, 506. I hope you and your Cubs fan spouse are very happy, except that I hope you're the happier one whenever the Nationals are playing the Cubbies.

What do you guys think? How far past 100 comments will we get before someone from WaPo puts up a new post? I'm going to take "145" for my entry in the post posting pool.

Posted by: greggwiggins | October 20, 2009 10:42 AM | Report abuse

Hey Gang...well, 506-as one of my favorite contributors,,,,,,I hope this doesn't cut down on your posts! But congrats-hope you do better than my oh fer three!Now some might say three strikes and "yer OUT!!"...but looked at from a different perspective...still using baseball metaphors (what else?)-I still have six strikes, 2 more outs, before the inning is over!
Go Nats....

Posted by: zendo | October 20, 2009 10:52 AM | Report abuse

I'll take 126* comments, please.

Also, Acta-vating with some tidbits I found:

http://www.cleveland.com/budshaw/index.ssf/2009/10/cleveland_indians_could_do_a_l.html

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/275186-heading-the-tribe-a-case-for-manny-acta

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 20, 2009 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Three teams have manager openings. Astros, Indians, Nats. Two have interviewed Acta, none have interviewed Riggleman. Do the math.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 20, 2009 9:22 AM

*****************
Hi nunof!


Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Congratulations, 506! May you have a happy life and lots of left-handed sons. =)

Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Another FO move: Bobby Henley has been promoted from GCL manager to Minor League Field coordinator (via MadDog). The more interesting thing is that this is a position that Tim Foli turned down.

Posted by: sec307 | October 20, 2009 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Man, Tracee and Barry on Kornheiser today. That's a good morning!

Congratulations, 506. Mrs. 506 is a lucky gal.

Posted by: JohninMpls | October 20, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

> Hi nunof!

Huh? Although I may agree with nunof occasionally, I am most certainly not nunof. I also agree with this statement in one of the links that natsfan1a1 just posted, but that doesn't make me natsfan1a1, does it?

"Acta is in town for a second interview today. The Indians are also believed to still be considering Bobby Valentine, Travis Fryman and Torey Lovullo. Valentine probably has the most box office clout but Acta's demeanor and experience in a rebuilding situation makes him the better choice."

I'd add to this that Valentine is going to want way too much salary for the Indians to pay a manager to rebuild, and the other two guys are no-names who admittedly would come cheap. But Acta would come cheap as well, which would make it sound like he could very well have the inside track for this job.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 20, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Some AFL and Rizzo stuff from Byron Kerr on the MASN site:

http://masnsports.com/2009/10/more-on-strasburg-and-the-nats.html

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 20, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

And you're saying Manny could be selected because he's cheap? That's not much of a Man of the Hour endorsement.

Repeat. Manny's a good guy. He probably learned some lessons and he'll likely get a manager's job. But your correlation between Manny interviewing with 2 teams and Riggleman waiting for the Nats's decision and Manny being Man of the Year and Riggleman Not So Much is just a litttttttttle bit of a stretch.

But that's just me.

Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 12:06 PM | Report abuse

And now for something completely different: a new Drew Storen post. He's a funny guy.

http://natstown.mlblogs.com/

(Bueller? Anyone? Anyone??)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 20, 2009 12:20 PM | Report abuse

"And you're saying Manny could be selected because he's cheap? That's not much of a Man of the Hour endorsement."

No, I'm saying Valentine won't be selected because he's too expensive. Big difference.

If Manny Acta isn't the Man of the Hour for your taste, he's definitely the Flavor of the Month for the rest of the world while you would seem to be the only one looking for some Riggleman in your trick or treat bag.

Prediction: Manny Acta gets a permanent manager gig before Riggleman does. Maybe even before Zorn gets fired.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 20, 2009 12:21 PM | Report abuse

"And now for something completely different: a new Drew Storen post. He's a funny guy."

So was Balester. Give me a pitcher who can get guys out, not another blogger.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 20, 2009 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the heads up and the link 1a.

Who would have thought that MASN would be leading in Nats coverage this offseason. Yikes!

(Come on Tracee, I know you got some more notes stashed away ... give it up!)

Posted by: natbiscuits | October 20, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

i'm hardpressed to figure out why anyone really cares about "manny vs riggleman" so much as to care which one's more flavorful in anyone's eyes at the moment.

manny ran his course here. he's not coming back. who really cares if some other team interviews him? that doesn't mean the nats made a mistake. i don't think the browns made a mistake getting rid of bellichek (sp?) when they did. he was awful in cleveland, just horrid. he learned and got better in his next job, but that doesn't mean he would have done the same in cleveland.

riggleman isn't a savior. maybe he'd be a decent caretaker manager for this team going forward (it's going to be a couple of years til contention), maybe someone else would be better. but i don't really see what the big deal is about what someone else thinks about either of them for their team compared to what the FO in DC thinks about a manager for this team.

and unless/until we know who this FO is considering (maybe people on one/some of the four teams still in contention), just because they haven't expressed interest publicly or publicly interviewed someone else doesn't mean they aren't interested in someone other than riggleman.

let's see what happens.

Posted by: sec231 | October 20, 2009 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Hear, hear, 231. Whatever Manny's merits might be in theory, he was no longer being effective here, he was done. So it doesn't matter how desirable he might be right now for other teams.

Personally, I don't think Manny has what it takes to be a very good manager, for any team. But I'd be happy to see him get another shot and see if he can prove me and many others wrong--especially if it's in the AL.

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | October 20, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Q&A with Jim Riggleman
By Byron Kerr on October 20, 2009 12:34 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
I had a chance to check in with Nationals interim manager Jim Riggleman and get his take on the playoffs, the Nats in 2010 and his job situation. Below is what Riggleman had to say during our recent Q&A.

What's the latest on what you're hearing about the manager position full-time?

"Not much new information right now. I think the search is based a little bit around the LCS and World Series schedules. I know they want to talk with some candidates. During the post-season, the commissioner's office would prefer that these announcements wait 'til after the end of the World Series."

Translation: "Well, you know, the Astros and Indians both have managerial openings and it looks like they'll both be filled before the postseason is over - even though it appears like neither one of those GMs will be reading that Do Not Open Until After the World Series resume and cover letter I sent them. Well, hopefully my old friend Manny Acta will find it at whichever one of those jobs he ends up getting and maybe he'll and bring me on as bench coach again. And you know, I've always said that next to playing managing is the best job you can have, and next to managing you know you can't beat being a bench coach.

And the best thing you know is that Mike Rizzo would never emasculate me while the hiring process undergoes its course, you know like Dan Snyder is emasculating Jim Zorn. Next to playing and managing and bench coaching, you know not being emasculated while you're being passed over is the best job a guy can have in baseball."

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 20, 2009 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Thanks everyone for the well wishes. It was wonderful. I now have a reason to love rainy, cold days.

I'll say one thing for Jim Riggleman, he's a saint. That man has had every opportunity to say bad things about Acta and anyone else, and instead has said nothing but gentlemanly things. He brings credit to the Old Dominion.

Now if it just wasn't as the ship was sinking...

Posted by: Section506 | October 20, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Why does Riggleman bring credit to the Old Dominion, Section506? He's from Maryland after all.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 20, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

grats, btw, 506. forgot to mention that.

*yawn* to ftetptbcch...

here's another bucket of dirt if you need help making a mountain out of a mole hill.

Posted by: sec231 | October 20, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Congrats 506! Now go make and raise some young Nats fans, we need all the help we can get.

Posted by: Section505203 | October 20, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Congrats 506, and Mrs. 506!

Posted by: BobLHead | October 20, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Wow. If Jim Zorn is Dead Man Walking in this town, then Jim Riggleman would appear to be Dead Man Sitting Around Waiting for His Phone to Ring.

Posted by: nunof1 | October 20, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Congrats 506! Now go make and raise some young Nats fans, we need all the help we can get.
Posted by: Section505203 | October 20, 2009 3:47 PM

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

Fans? Psh. Look at my comment above. We need him to have BALLPLAYERS!!

Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 4:38 PM | Report abuse

He's from Maryland after all.

Posted by: FromTheEclipseThePlaceThatBobCarpenterCallsHome | October 20, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

-----

Oh my God, you are totally right! Ugh, I feel dirty.

Posted by: Section506 | October 20, 2009 4:39 PM | Report abuse

Espinosa dropped one down to help load the bases for Marrero, but alas, he grounded out to end the 3rd. Dogs down 1-0.

Posted by: sec307 | October 20, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

ohhh, now I get it. So in other words, our focus will be pitching, pitching, and more pitching? ;-)

---

Fans? Psh. Look at my comment above. We need him to have BALLPLAYERS!

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 20, 2009 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Long happy life together, Mr. and Mrs. 506!

Posted by: Section109 | October 20, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse

To 506 & the former "red-headed, Cubs-fan GF": Mazel tov, and hope to start hearing from the each of you here on planet NJ.

Posted by: BinM | October 20, 2009 6:48 PM | Report abuse

So the Nats have asked permission to talk with Boswell's favorite son Donnie Baseball for the open manager gig. But they'd better get on the stick if they want him, or hope Acta beats him out for the Cleveland job.

http://mlb.fanhouse.com/2009/10/20/mattingly-a-candidate-to-manager-nationals-indians/

The big question of course is what would happen to Mattingly's grey soul patch after a year of bombardment with "It's been a while since I needed a tie..."

Posted by: nunof1 | October 20, 2009 7:09 PM | Report abuse

Ugh - Good news, bad news from Phoenix. Good news first - Espinosa went 2-5 with 1RS & 1RBI, and Marrero went 2-5, with a 2B, 1RS & 1RBI. Bad news is both Espinosa & Marrero committed errors in an 8-11 loss to the Peoria Sagauros (their 1st win of the season - sound familiar)?

FWIW, Strasburg is next scheduled for Thursday (10/22), against the Peoria Javalinas.
-----------------------
In other news, rumour has it that KC is considering moving A.Crow from the Arizona Instructional League to the AFL (Suprise Rafters), if he continues his current progression (from the KCRoyals mlb.com site).

Posted by: BinM | October 20, 2009 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Manny had his second sit-down with the Tribe today.

http://cleveland.indians.mlb.com/news/print.jsp?ymd=20091019&content_id=7494372&vkey=news_cle&fext=.jsp&c_id=cle

I would like to add my congrats to the newly minted Mr. and Mrs. 506. Hope marriage doesn't mellow his posts on the blog.

Posted by: leetee1955 | October 20, 2009 7:29 PM | Report abuse

The big question of course is what would happen to Mattingly's grey soul patch after a year of bombardment with "It's been a while since I needed a tie..."
Posted by: nunof1 | October 20, 2009 7:09 PM
----------------------
If it's me, I'd say keep it, and let it get a little bigger (but I have an ever-greying ponytail, but that's beside the point).

Posted by: BinM | October 20, 2009 7:33 PM | Report abuse

The big question of course is what would happen to Mattingly's grey soul patch after a year of bombardment with "It's been a while since I needed a tie..."
Posted by: nunof1 | October 20, 2009 7:09 PM
----------------------
If it's me, I'd say keep it, and let it get a little bigger (but I have an ever-greying ponytail, but that's beside the point).

Posted by: BinM | October 20, 2009 7:34 PM | Report abuse

D'oh! Doubled myself up & got "submissioned" as well - My bad.

Posted by: BinM | October 20, 2009 7:36 PM | Report abuse

leetee: Acually, that was Manny's 1st "sit-down" with CLE - the first interview was a conference call. Mattingly apparently got a conference call interview with CLE today as well.

Posted by: BinM | October 20, 2009 7:39 PM | Report abuse

salut to the 506's. we need a new post. hasn't saint stephen been seen scratching himself, or something?

Posted by: surly_w | October 20, 2009 7:42 PM | Report abuse

surly: greggwiggans had a post up earlier today, guessing at the # of posts on this string before we get "fed & watered" again; he called 145, but I'm guessing we could be well over 200 before anybody comes down to change the cedar shavings & give us some sunflower seeds & a fresh bottle. It's only been THREE DAYS, for crying out loud!

Posted by: BinM | October 20, 2009 7:52 PM | Report abuse

I'll take 126* comments, please...

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 20, 2009 10:53 AM

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

Pay up, 1a.

Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 8:01 PM | Report abuse

506, congrats and best wishes.

At least one local paper is still covering the Nats. You can check out Ben Goessling's blog entry over at this link, he has reported some substantive comments from Mattingly on the Nats and the search: http://tinyurl.com/ygjo6e8

I guess Sheinin doesn't think this kind of stuff is important enough for him to report on, since he is also up in Philly covering this series.

Posted by: CoverageisLacking | October 20, 2009 8:09 PM | Report abuse

comment #136 (by my count)- Tracee, CHarlan, Boswell, Sheinen, Cameron S., Bueller..., Anybody? There has been some new Nationals' news - Bob Henley (GCL Mgr '09) was named Director of Minor League field operations; Former players & managers (Acta, Mackinin, Mills) are interviewing for other ML Manager positions; Will somebody please throw us something new to yakk about?

Posted by: BinM | October 20, 2009 8:23 PM | Report abuse

NN: I didn't see you making a call in the pool, so 1a1 owes you NOTHING, no soup, no crackers, not even a soda - NEXT! (#138+).

Posted by: BinM | October 20, 2009 8:34 PM | Report abuse

From mlb trade rumors"

"Intermin manager Jim Riggleman is the favorite to manage the Washington Nationals in 2010."

MAN OF THE YEAR!!!!

Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 9:11 PM | Report abuse

Needed a Nats fix and went over and stared at the AFL stats pages on the Nats MLB website. Our guys are looking goooood! P-Dogs are 5-2!

Anyone else just sick of hearing about the saga over in Ashburn? I have just about had enough of the tears and jeers. If anyone wants an alternative to the puppets on TEM and that debacle over on the old JFK, tune into XM144 "Mad Dog Radio", Russo and Co are doing one hell of a job talking up the playoffs and all things baseball. Its such a refreshing treat from the Snyder Saga and the rest of the National Felons League

Posted by: TippyCanoe | October 20, 2009 9:20 PM | Report abuse

Also this:

Dodgers' hitting coach Don Mattingly tells Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe that he is ready to be a manager. Donnie Baseball expects to be interviewed for openings and would strongly consider accepting one if he is given such an offer.

That Mattingly is on fire!!

Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 9:22 PM | Report abuse

BinM

the snydermen sychophants could easily eclipse that mark on one thread within an hour of the latest catastrophic loss.

Posted by: surly_w | October 20, 2009 10:24 PM | Report abuse

CiL

the OP has baseball reporters. the post has a baseball writer. big difference.

Posted by: surly_w | October 20, 2009 10:31 PM | Report abuse

Dang. Do y'all take Monopoly money?

---

Pay up, 1a.

Posted by: NatsNut | October 20, 2009 8:01 PM

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 21, 2009 7:04 AM | Report abuse

hehe. Thanks, BinM, for covering for me.

---

NN: I didn't see you making a call in the pool, so 1a1 owes you NOTHING, no soup, no crackers, not even a soda - NEXT! (#138+).

Posted by: BinM | October 20, 2009 8:34 PM

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 21, 2009 7:07 AM | Report abuse

I was thinking 1a owed us all. Now you ruined it for everyone BinM!

Posted by: NatsNut | October 21, 2009 7:36 AM | Report abuse

#145 by my count. Another one bites the dust. BinM is the last fan standing at #200. :-)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 21, 2009 8:28 AM | Report abuse

Paging Chico Harlan. Paging Chico Harlan.

I guess we're only gonna get posts when Strasburg does something. Very dissappointing. We have a number of guys in the AFL who could potential contribute to next year's team - depending on how they do out there - and I'd like to get some coverage. Post links to actual coverage if nothing else. Something to spark debate, conversation, or maybe even a food fight. We haven't heard from Rizzo in a while. It'd be nice if say, a Nats beat reporter would let us know he's on the case.

I've also noticed that the Licey Tigers have started their season, but no Dukes yet. When is reporting? Anybody else gonna be down there with him?

Posted by: sec307 | October 21, 2009 9:36 AM | Report abuse

I guess I'm headed over to the Times website.

Thanks guys.

Posted by: sec307 | October 21, 2009 9:39 AM | Report abuse

Congrat's 506&mrs.506;all the best to both of you and remember no tv in the bedroom(my mom told me that when i got hitched)!

Posted by: dargregmag | October 21, 2009 9:50 AM | Report abuse

Who had 149 in the pool? Guess BinM wins, as he was closest. Tell him what he won, Johnny.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 21, 2009 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Mazel Tov to 506. If I hadn't been married to my Chicago born wife for more than 30 years, I'd almost swear that we are the same person.

BTW, I think that this will be a much more interesting off season than most. There are a number of very good players (not great, just very good) up for free agency. OTOH, a number of perennial contenders will be looking to upgrade. Let's remember that, when we scream: "well, why didn't the Nats just sign X or Y, that there are a number of other teams, out there, looking to sign these same guys. Also, we may be a year away from focusing on specific positions (catcher for one)that really require our going after a serious, expensive (not only in cash, but in draft) upgrade.

As far as manager is concerned, all of the Acta talk seems to be from teams that are about ready to take a serious step back. My bet is that, if offered a position, it will be to Houston. In evaluating, Cleveland, with a weak division, will probably go with a more visible manager (say Valentine). Since the MLB office has this, no major announcement 'til after the W/S (without defining major), I'd bet on a try for Mattingly, with Riggles as backup position.

Posted by: Catcher50 | October 21, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

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