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Saturday, May 27, 2006


Washington wins 10-4, currently tied 1-1 in Saturday's game

Washington Monument and Capitol
Originally uploaded by BigCat.
Livan Hernandez and teammates beat Brett Tomko (who entered the game with a record of 5-1) and the previously 27-20 Los Angeles Dodgers to bring their streak of games won to 4 (after picking up 2 wins off of the visiting O's).

A series of photographs following Friday's game (and Thursday's win) can be found on Flickr.com.

The picture accompanying this blog entry is taken from RFK and shows, in the distance, the Washington Monument and the top of the US Capitol building.

Thursday, May 25, 2006


Rivera makes debut

Rivera makes debut
Originally uploaded by BigCat.
Nationals win 8-5 and the game is "chronicled" through many pictures (tested new camera) that can be found at Flickr.com.

Saul Rivera makes his major league debut (I believe) and pitches 0.2 innings, picks up a hold, strikes out one batter, walks one batter and leaves with a zero ERA.

This "Blog this photo" is a test, so this will be a short blog entry.

Friday, May 19, 2006


Week in Review, and O’s vs. Nationals starts tonight

Off Day

Shutout by Cubs, Lose 0-4.
Livan Hernandez actually made it past the first inning without giving up three runs, and actually made it through a game without being charged with three earned runs (2 ER, 2 Unearned Runs). Unfortunately, despite past games when the Nationals would score in the top of the inning only to see Livan give the game away in the bottom of the first inning, this time the Nationals were only able to get 4 total hits all game, and were not able to score a run against Zambrano & Dempster (starter and relief pitcher for the Cubs). Hernandez pitched 7 quality innings and lowered his era to 6.04, but increased his number of losses for the season to 5 to put his record at 1-5. Vidro, Johnson and Gonzalez (who was hitting .417 after this game) got one hit each. Clayton and Anderson (PH) got one walk each. And that was the extent of the Nationals offensive powerhouse in operation. Errors: 1 for Soriano (now has 5), and 1 for Clayton (who also now has 5).

Nationals.com recap. ESPN recap.
Shutout by Cubs, Lose 0-5.
The problem of using a catcher like Gonzalez is that he is a much better offensive catcher than . . . right I can’t keep that up. Gonzalez was brought up to put his stronger arm behind the plate, and supposedly provide some defensive ability, not offensive ability. Point? Zach Day and Wiki Gonzalez struggled to communicate early in the game and together they ended up giving up 3 earned runs in the first 2 innings (and 1 more unearned run; Gonzalez went 0-3 and his batting average lowered to .333). Day’s day (sorry) ended after 4 innings pitched (specifically, after facing 23 batters and throwing 84 pitches). Day’s era increased from 5.85 to 5.94.

Soriano went 1 for 4 with zero walks. The Cubs pitchers also gave walks to Byrd, Johnson, Zimmerman, and Jackson (playing SS). That was the extent of the Nationals offensive abilities in this game. Also: Zimmerman was charged with his fourth error and Jackson was charged with his second.

Nationals.com recap. ESPN recap.

Nationals Win 5-3.
I was in the middle of writing a “game in progress” blog entry when I lost access to the internet. Here’s what had been written and then what happened in the game after that point:
After being shutout twice and on the verge of being swept by the Cubs, the Nationals have finally scored some runs in this the third game of the Cubs series in Chicago. The annoying thing is that I didn't even realize that this was a day game until a couple of seconds ago. The good thing is that the Nationals are leading the Cubs 4-0. Let's try to figure out what has happened so far (currently fifth inning).

Let's see, Ramon Ortiz and his 0-4 record (and 6.30 era) is currently taking on the Cubs Kerry Wood first or second start (hard to tell, I can't get his stats page to open, and ESPN has him down for 1 start going 1.2 innings pitched an a 0.00 era, but the Nats page have him down as 0-0 with an era of 9.00). Ortiz has now pitched 4.2 innings in this game and has given up just 3 hits and no walks, while striking out 3 batters and keeping those three base-runners from scoring. His era has fallen from 6.30 down to 5.64 in those 4.2 innings pitched.

Now, the runs: um, I'm fairly sure that some home-runs are involved, but the internet just stopped working and I have no way to get this posted, so . . .

Right, so Ortiz pitched a total of 5.1 innings and picked up his first win of the season, giving him a record of 1-4. Jackson was charged with another error, and Anderson was caught stealing. Gonzalez’s batting average lowered to .263 after going 0-4 in the game.

Zimmerman (7th total homerun; 0 on, 1 out; 2nd inning), Jackson (2nd, 1 on, 2 out; 2nd inning), Soriano (13th; 0 on 0 out, 3rd inning), and Anderson (1st; 0 on 0 out, 6th inning) all hit home-runs in the game.

Nationals.com recap & ESPN.com boxscore.
Friday-Sunday: O’s vs. Nationals:
Michael O’Connor is scheduled to start tonight in the first ever regular season O’s/Nationals game. He will face 5-3, 4.38 era Kris Benson. Benson has started 8 games, 4 on the road. Half of Benson’s starts made it through seven innings, and 1 additional game made it into the seventh inning (6.2 IP). In 31.1 March/April innings pitched so far this season, Benson has given up 29 hits, 3 home-runs, and 11 walks. In those 31.1 innings, Benson also struck-out 17 batters off of 480 total pitches (278 strikes). In May Benson’s pitching has started to slip and in 18 innings, he has given up 18 hits, 2 home-runs, and seven walks (and 12 ER), while striking out 8 batters off of 301 pitches (175 strikes).

As a team, the O’s are currently 19-22 and are currently 5-5 in their last ten games. They are 5-10 on the road and, overall, have scored 210 runs and given up 242 runs. Both teams enter this series off of a win in their last game played, and lost their series 1-2 (O’s against the Red Sox and Nationals against the Cubs). The O’s had Thursday off.

Brian Roberts, Daniel Cabrera, Chris Gomez, Luis Matos, Tim Byrdak, David Newhan, John Parrish, and Aaron Rakers are currently on the O’s DL.

Batting Order/Roster:
1. Brandon Fahey (.298; 10 games leading off) & Ed Rogers (.200; 1 game leading off) split the duties at the top of the batting order and at 2B (at least they did in the last two games played). Patterson (.289; CF) & Terrero (.000; CF) have both lead-off in two games. Everyone else that has lead off are currently on the DL (Roberts, Newhan, Matos, and Gomez).

2. Melvin Mora (.363; 3B, 18 games in this spot); Conine (.318; 1B; 5 games); Markakis (.296; LF/CF/RF; 4 games)

3. Mora (.363; 3B, 21 games in this spot); Miguel Tejada (.395; SS; 19 games)

4. Tejada (.395; SS; 21 games); Jay Gibbons (.310; RF; 19)

5. Gibbons (.310; RF; 20 games); Ramon Hernandez (.377; C; 18 games); Kevin Millar (.339; 1B (listed as DH); 1 game); Conine (.318; 1B; 1 game)

6. Hernandez (.377; C; 13 games); Conine (.318; 1B; 12 games); Millar (.339; 1B; 8 games); Javy Lopez (.319; C/DH; 5 games); Patterson (.289; CF; 2 games)

7. Lopez (.319; C/DH; 11 games); Millar (.339; 1B; 11 games); Patterson (.289; CF; 10 games); Conine (.318; 1B; 4 games); Markakis (.296; LF/CF/RF; 2 games); Hernandez (.377; C; 1 game)

8. Conine (.318; 1B; 10 games); Millar (.339; 1B; 9 games); Lopez (.319; C/DH; 7 games); Markakis (.296; LF/CF/RF; 3 games); Patterson (.289; CF; 3 games); Hernandez (.377; C; 2 game)

9. Probably pitcher

Probables for Saturday and Sunday:
RHP Ace Rodrigo Lopez (1-6, 7.86) vs. RHP Tony Armas (4-2, 3.02)

Lopez’s last win was 4/3/06 (last loss: 5/15/06)

LHP 5th starter Bruce Chen (0-4; 8.23) vs. RHP Livan Hernandez (1-5; 6.04)

Chen’s last win was 10/2/05 (last loss: 4/23/06)

In the Bullpen for the O’s:

RHP Chris Ray (CL) 1-0, 2.76, 17 G, 10 saves, 16.1 IP 10 H 5 ER 1 HR 10 BB 18 SO (0 BS)
RHP Todd Williams 1-1, 3.86, 10 G, 1 save, 11.2 IP 15 H 5 ER 1 HR 3 BB 4 SO (1 BS)
RHP LaTroy Hawkins 1-1, 4.42, 19 G, 18.1 IP 20 H 9 ER 2 HR 6 BB 10 SO (2 BS)
LHP John Halama 2-1, 5.09, 13 G, 17.2 IP, 23 H 10 ER 5 HR 8 BB 7 SO (1 BS)
RHP Sendy Rleal 0-1, 3.79, 18 G, 19 IP, 20 H 8 ER 4 HR 11 BB 8 SO (1 BS)
LHP Kurt Birkins 0-0, 1.13, 5 G, 8 IP, 3 H 1 ER 0 HR 6 BB 6 SO (0 BS)
RHP Julio Manon 0-0, 2.25, 8 G, 8 IP, 6 H 2 ER 1 HR 8 BB 11 SO (1 BS)
RHP Chris Britton 0-0, 4.05, 5 G, 6.2 IP, 6 H 3 ER 0 HR 2 BB 6 SO (0 BS)

Sunday, May 14, 2006


Current Game in Progress: Great inning by Nationals after error by Braves 1B

Tony Armas started the game for the Nationals (and still pitching) and Thomson started for the Braves. Both pitchers make it to 5 innings pitched, but Peter Moylan replaces Thomson for the start of the sixth inning. In five innings of work (not that he has been pulled yet), Armas has given up zero runs off of 3 hit and 1 walk (with 5 strike-outs; current era 3.16. Thomson went 5 innings and gave up just 1 earned run, but an additional 4 runs scored unearned. As mentioned Moylan replaced Thomson to start the sixth inning and lasted just 1 out and faced Gonzalez (single, he is now 3 for 3 in his return to the majors), Clayton (double, Gonzalez to 3rd), gets Armas to strike out, Soriano (single, Gonzalez and Clayton score and Soriano moves to 2nd during throw), and then walks Vidro before being pulled for McBride. Johnson then singled and Soriano scores. Vidro moved to second. There are now two outs in the sixth inning, but I don't see what that second out was.

Right: Nationals scored first in the top of the third inning off of a leadoff home run by Soriano (his 12th overall home-run). The Nationals scored their second run of the game off of a double by Guillen which knocked in Vidro and moved Johnson to third (this didn't count as an earned run, because, with two out, Johnson tied LaRoche to first base (tie goes to the runner; LaRoche got an error counted against him because he just jogged back to the back). Church then singled which scored Johnson and Guillen. Zimmerman then singled allowing Church to score. The Braves finally got a third out in the fifth but didn't keep the Nationals off the board in the sixth. Soriano singled and Gonzalez & Clayton score. At the end of 5: Nationals 5-0; at the end of the top of the sixth inning: Nationals 8-0.

Oh, and Gonzalez: The Reds, Pirates and Braves seemed to steal bases without any negative consequence, so the Nationals purchased the contract of Wiki Gonzalez to serve as the catcher until Schneider comes off of the DL (he went on the DL on 5/13/06 due to a sore left hamstring, Flick activated, and room made on 40-man roster for Gonzalez by moving Guzman, out for the year, to the 60-day DL). Gonzalez has a much better percentage of throwing out runners. Point? Gonzalez threw out Francoeur trying to steal second. He is currently hitting 3 for 4 in this game (not particularly easy to write a blog entry like this with the game still in progress, can't write fast enough).

So: I'll end here:
Score: Nationals 8, Braves 0
Inning: 7th
Batting: Nationals
Outs: 2
Base-runners: Clayton
At Bat: Armas
On-Deck: Soriano
Attendance just announced: 31,062

Friday, May 12, 2006


Week in Review: Patterson (as late as June 1st?), Guzman (Out), Nationals lose 5-4 in 11, giving up 4-1 lead

So, what's happened in the last week?

1) Story about Patterson:
Apparently Patterson could be pitching right now if the team was in a pennant race, according to Bowden, but because they aren't and because it would probably be better for all involved if Patterson waited until he could actually pitch without pain, then he likely won't be back until as late as June 1st (considering Guzman was supposed to be back by now, you know how never say something like "back at the latest . . ."). Patterson article.

2) Guzman's season is over, back by 2007?:
Before testing his shoulder in front of Robinson and Bowden, Guzman decided on having season-ending surgery. Apparently, he might be good to go by April 2007. Guzman article.

3) The games:
Since we last met, the Nationals have played 5 games (off Monday), and are scheduled to start a series tonight against the 15-19 Braves team. In those five games the Nationals won two and lost three games, to end up with a record on May 12, 2006 of 12-23. Except for the Tuesday 7-1 win against the Reds, most of the games were relatively close, within 3 runs (three games were 1 run games).

Saturday's game: Loss
Ortiz managed just five innings and gave up 4 runs. As the Nationals were able to score 4 runs, that would seem to indicate that they should have a good chance to win that one. While they were able to take a 4-1 lead into the top of the third inning, that 3 run edge was the closest the team came to winning. The Pirates picked up another two runs in the top of the third, then another run in the top of the fourth to tie the game. The Nationals were not able to get another run, and the Pirates won in the 11th inning by scoring a run off of Felix Rodriguez.
Player of the Game: Soriano with a home-run and 2 RBI (4 total bases) for the losers and Bay for the winners (1 home-run, 2 RBI, and an another actual hit).
Dog of the game: Oritz for giving up 4 runs in 5 innings? Rodriquez for giving up 1 run in the 11th and allowing the Pirates to win? No one scored because of Zimmerman's error, so he isn't it.

Sunday: Win
O'Connor pitched his third major league start and gave up three runs in five innings, and giving up more walks than strike-outs (4 walks, 3 strike-outs). The Nationals picked up five runs in the third (their only runs), so when O'Connor left after throwing 95 pitches to 26 batters, he was the pitcher of record. The relief pitchers held the Pirates to just one additional run, and O'Connor picked up his second win of the season. He is now 2-1 with an era of 2.12.
Player of the Game: Guillen and his 2 hits (1 HR) and 2 RBI.
Dog of the Game: in a win? If I have to pick someone in such a situation, Anderson for getting caught trying to steal in the 6th.

Monday: Day off

Tueday's game: Win:
Tony Armas pitched six solid innings, giving up just one run on 2 hits and 1 walk, while striking out 4 to lead the Nationals to a 7-1 win over the Reds. The Nationals managed to get 14 hits to the Reds 4.
Player of the Game: Tony Armas (Guillen (2 home-runs, 3 RBI (2 with 2-out)) would get the nod if the Nationals had another pitcher that could last more than 5 innings (see last night's game)).
Dog of the Game: in a 7-1 win?

Wednesday's Game: Loss
Hernandez yet again got in trouble early, and yet again started to get a handle on the batters later. The Nationals gave Hernandez a 2 run cushion before he threw his first pitch against the Reds. What did he do in return? Gave up three runs. The Nationals batters immediately scored one more run in the top of the second inning to tie the game, but Hernandez promptly rejected their help by giving up another run to the Reds at the bottom of the second. After two innings, Reds 4, Nationals 3. Hernandez gave up one more run before getting pulled (after 112 pitches to 29 batters) after one out in the sixth. In the meantime the Nationals had scored a run in the top of the fifth, putting the game into a 1 run advantage for the Reds (5-4) after Hernandez left. By the time the game ended, the Nationals will have scored two more runs and given up four more runs. Final score: 6-9. Reds win, Nationals lose.
Player of the Game: Johnson (4 for 5 with 2 doubles and 1 home-run, driving in 2)
Dog of the game: Hernandez or Stanton (for giving up 3 runs with the game tied in the 8th inning).

Thursday's Game: Loss:
Zach Day faced off against the Reds Bronson Arroyo and his 5-1 record. For eight innings the two pitchers pitched a 1-run duel, with Day giving up that 1 run in the fifth and with Arroyo giving up nothing in his eight innings of work (except for six hits and 1 walk). Arroyo's innings and strike-out total matched up in this game, 8 innings pitched, 8 strike-outs. Day's innings and hits given up matched up in this game, 7 innings pitched, 7 hits given up (plus 1 walk, and 3 strike-outs). Day again lowered his era, this time down to 5.85 and now sees an era of 2.37 with the Nationals this season. This was a 1-run pitchers game through 8, so why did the game end up a 5-4 win for the Reds? Because both teams had relief pitchers give up runs, Weathers giving up 1 run in the top of the ninth in a blown save (his third of the year) that allowed the Nationals to continue the game. That one run, a home-run by Johnson, would not be the Nationals only run of the game. The Nationals batters turned over a 4-1 lead after the top of the 11th inning to their relief pitchers, but while Rauch was able to get 1 out (12 pitches to 2 batters), he also gave up 1 run to then leave with the game 4-2. Rodriquez replaced Rauch and promptly allowed two runners to get-aboard off of 1 hit and 1 walk on 16 pitches to just 2 batters. With the score still 4-2, Eischen, and his 9+ era replaced Rodriquez and his above 5 era (after the game, Rodriquez's era moved up to 6.52). The game lasted a total of three hours and thirty one minutes. How much of that time did it take Eischen to lose the game? He pitched 2 pitches (both strikes) to 1 batter. Eischen gave up a three run home-run to Griffey for a Reds victory (and a reminder to self that just because a pitcher gets a run counted against him doesn't mean that he was pitching at the time). I don't see a play-by-play on the Nationals website, so I assume that Rauch gave up 1 run, then Rodriquez put two runners on base, who then scored when Griffey hit his home-run. Two of those runners counted against Rodriquez and 1 counted against Eischen.
Player of the game: Zach Day
Dog of the day: Joey Eischen and his blown save.
Tonight: 0-3 Ramon Ortiz (5.88 era) against 2-2 John Smoltz and his 3.72 era. Game preview.

The Nationals have the chance to remain in fourth place if they sweep the Braves. After those three games both teams would have 15 wins, but the Braves would have 1 less loss (15-22 vs. 15-23). If, instead, the Braves sweep the Nationals and the Phillies win their next three games, then the Nationals and Phillies will be tied at 12-23 (and in last place). The Philies will be trying to sweep the first-place Reds in Cincinnati.

Friday, May 05, 2006


Nats Lose (Thursday), then Win (Friday)

Quick update: Thursday's game was long and filled with frustration for Hernandez as the tight strike zone that was being enforced took Hernandez off of his game. For the Marlins this was one great series, eh? They finally won their first road series sweep, and finished it off with a 11-3 pounding of the Nationals.

Friday's game was a much more exiciting game all around (except for the Pirates), as Zach Day put together a great seven inning shut-out effort, and in the meantime lowered his ERA to 7.11 from something like 10.65 (says something when an ERA of 7.11 is the lower era after a shutout performance). The bullpen held up the shutout and the Nationals are now 10-20 and in third place.

Other hightlights (other than the great pitching) came from Nick Johnson, who ended up going 2 for 2, both hits being home-runs and ended up 4 RBIs. Vidro went 3 for 4, and Byrd really helped by getting on base twice on walks. Oh, and for those wondering where Church went off too, he's still with the team and came in to run for Marlon Anderson after Anderson was hit on the toe (looked like) in his pinch-hit at-bat for Day. Read the wrap up on the Nationals page.

The Nationals have now won 2 games at RFK this season, and on a personal note, I'm now 2-2 at RFK.

Friday Night: Also somewhat on a personal note, unfortunately past indications were wrong and O'Connor will not pitch Saturday night, instead Ramon Ortiz (0-3, 5.55) will face off against Victor Santos (1-4, 5.06).

Also on a personal note, this blog entry was written while listening to a interesting Celtic Fusion band Peatbog Faeries. Listen for yourself at their MySpace.com page (4 songs available to listen to). Just remember that it's Celtic music, and that their will be lots of instrumentals.

Thursday, May 04, 2006


Nats Lose, Lerner makes annoucement, game tonight

Well, like lots and lots of others have noted and reported on, the Nationals lost last night 6-5 to the lowly Florida Marlins. At this point I'm becoming concerned that the team won't be able to right itself this season, no not because they lost last night but because the team is in a transitional period. Unless the new guys hit the ground running, that is after being confirmed around May 17-18 by the other MLB owners, then the team will be stuck in this holding pattern for a good part of this season. The current team management will be, or more than likely will be, replaced at some point by the new owners, and now that new owners are a reality instead of some longish term promise the current management team knows that their days are numbered, and therefore their decision-making generator will probably be a little numb. Even if the new owners have a grand plan ready to implement immediately, what exactly can they do now in late May (when they will officially take over the team, unless I'm misreading that vote taken at "May 17-18 MLB owners meeting" situation)? Make lots of trades? Well, my mind just went blank, so I'll have to move on . . .
Game Tonight: Due to various reasons, I find that it is a lot easier to pay attention to the Nationals when I'm actually able to see them in person, though the tv can be a good alternative it isn't always available, and I only use the internet to watch day games (if I remember that it is a day game). So, lucky me, I'm off to see the Nationals tonight and through Saturday (if I don't fall down overcome by the weight of my stuffed head).

So, we need some pitchers, right, to play baseball?
Livan Hernandez will take the mound for the Nationals, with his 1-3 record and 5.49 era in 6 games started (and don't forget that Hernandez started off with the Marlins in 1996 (just 1 game) and pitched for them until 1999). Livan is currently averaging almost 7 innings a game (exactly 6 innings each in the first three games, and almost exactly 7 IP in the next three games started (once moving into the 8th inning and getting 1 out). In those 39.1 innings pitched, Livan has thrown 628 pitches, 395 for strikes, and that averages out to 104.7 pitches a game. Against Florida, Hernandez has a record of 10-5 with an era of 2.66 in 20 games started, though his overall career numbers at RFK is a record of 7 wins and 10 losses with an era of 4.21 in 19 GS and 1-1 (4.09 era) in 3 games started against Florida at RFK.

For the Marlins: 22-year-old 6'7'', 240 pound right-handed relief/starting pitcher Joshua Michael Johnson (Josh Johnson). Johnson made his MLB major league debut last year and started 1 game, while pitching 3 games in relief (12.1 IP, 10 SO, 10 BB, 3.65 ERA). In that first MLB start, Johnson went 5.1 innings, and gave up two earned runs off of four hits, four walks and was able to strike out seven batters (thanks Marlins game notes). This season, Johnson has a record of 1 win and 2 losses, all in seven games of relief. If Johnson actually takes the mound tonight, this will be his first start of the season. In relief, he has pitched 11.2 innings, giving up 7 hits, 6 runs (5 earned) 1 HR and has struck-out ten while walking nine batters. On the road this year, Johnson is 1-2, with an era of 7.94 in 3 games. Oh, and this isn't Johnson's first appearance against the Nationals, for one of his relief appearances of 2005 came facing the Nationals batters for 1 inning of shut-out work. For those that arrive early and wish to try to spot him, he apparently wears the number 55 on his jersey.

Marlins Batters:
1B: At first the Marlins have Mike Jacobs (17, roster number) and Wes(ley Ray) Helms (18; and 3B) listed on their depth chart. Jacobs is currently hitting .179 in 78 at-bats in 22 games and has hit 3 home-runs and driven in 13. This is Jacobs second season in the majors and hit .310 in 30 games in his rookie season of 2005. Helms is hitting .290 this year in 21 games. OBP: .353, SLG: .484. Jacobs is their starting first baseman, at least according to the Marlins press guide.

2B: Dan(iel Cooley) Uggla (6), currently hitting .286 in 25 games with 4 HR and 12 RBI and 3 SB. .340 OBP and .469 SLG, 17 SO, 7 BB. No stats available last three years in MLB, rookie? Alfredo Amezago (4; and SS), .250 in 16 games, 1 walk, 6 SO, .276 OBP.

SS: Hanley Ramirez (2) is currently hitting .287 in 25 games (101 AB), with 2 HR, 10 RBI and 7 SB. 12 walks and 27 SO. .368 OBP and .455 slg.

3B: (Jose) Miguel Cabrera: Miguel is currently hitting .315 in 89 at-bats in 25 games, with 4 home-runs, 14 RBI, 3 SB, 19 BB, and 20 SO (.445 OBP and .551 SLG).

Catcher: Olivo, Treanor & Willingham handle the catching duties, with Willingham getting the majority of the work (though in LF), with Olivo close behind him in time played (as in he is the starting catcher). Miguel (Eduardo) Olivo (30) is currently hitting .250 after 19 games and 60 AB, with 3 HR, 8 RBI, 1 SB, 1 BB, 17 SO and an on-base-percentage of .292 and a slugging percentage of .500. Matt(hew Aaron) Treanor (20) is currently hitting .241 in just 29 at-bats in 11 games played (2 walks, 8 SO, 2 RBI). Josh(ua David) Willingham (14) is currently hitting .326 after 89 AB in 25 games with 5 HR, 22 RBI, 1 SB, 12 BB, 14 SO and an OBP of .415 and a SLG of .607.

OF: Josh Willingham covers LF, with C. Aguila and R. Abercrombie serving as his backup in LF. Reggie Abercrombie (61) starts in CF and is currently hitting .209 in 67 AB in 20 games. Eric Reed (1) serves as Abercrombie's backup in CF, and is currently hitting .115 in 26 AB in 20 games. Chris(topher Louis) Aguila (3) starts in RF and is currently hitting .233 in 60 AB in 21 games. Joseph Edward Borchard (--) serves as Aguila's backup in RF and is hitting .222 in 9 ab in 6 games (and he last saw action on April 21st).

Starting Line-up (So far)
1: Ramierz (SS), Reed (CF, 1 game? or 1 AB), Amezaga (SS)
2: Herrida (RF, not on active roster), Ramierz (SS), Uggla (2B), Amezaga (SS)
3: Caberra (3B)
4: Jacobs (1B), Willingham (C)
5: Willingham (C), Jacobs (1B), Helms (1B)
6: Uggla (2B), Aguila (RF & LF), Olivo (C)
7: Olivo (C), Aguila (RF), Treanor (C), Abercombie (OF)
8: Reed (CF), Abercombie (OF), Treanor (C)
9: Pitcher
Oh, and about 27 minutes ago, Frank Robinson, Brian Schneider and Marlon Anderson were scheduled to appear at the ground-breaking ceremonies for the new baseball stadium at Half and O Street (I assume nothing prevented this occasion from occurring).

Wednesday, May 03, 2006


Nats Win, get new owner, and play a game tonight

Well, now that the team has an actual owner, I guess I have to actually start blogging regularly again.
Lerner's Group buys the MLB Nationals
According to SI.com, the Nationals have been bought by Theodore Lerner and group for a reported price of $450 million (league purchased team for $120 million in 2002).

The selection was confirmed Wednesday by a baseball official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the announcement, expected in a late afternoon conference call, had not been made.
AP, through SI.com

And as the Washington Post notes (just to add to the news sources):

Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig called Bethesda-based billionaire Theodore N. Lerner today to tell him he will be the new owner of the Washington Nationals, team sources said.
Washington Post.com

The call is expected to be made at 4:45pm and a news conference is expected to be held by Lerner at 7pm (Fairmont Hotel in Washington, if you want to attend).

Of course Lerner's group is the "fast-track" choice and have not actually and officially been confirmed yet, apparently that will not occur until May 17-18 Owner's meeting in NYC.

And, of course, the DC Council, or select members of said council, still don't like Lerner's group:

"It looks like we're headed to divorce court before we even say, 'I do,' " council member Vincent B. Orange Sr. (D-Ward 5) said yesterday of the city's relationship with the Lerners. A day earlier, Orange and Marion Barry (D-Ward 8) had said that the Lerner family had not done enough to include black investors in its bid for the franchise.
from Washington Post.com article.
Rookie picks up first career MLB win
Michael O'Connor pitches in his second major league start and picks up career first win in Nationals 6-2 defeat of the Mets. Read the Washington Post.com article by Barry Svrluga.

After 12 major league innings, O'Connor currently has an era of 0.75 (1 earned run plus 3 unearned runs given up in that first start). The 25-year-old "O'Connor can't overpower major league hitters, [and] he must rely on his fastball to set up his off-speed pitches . . .. Catcher Brian Schneider said because O'Connor was unfamiliar with every single Mets hitter, Schneider could dictate the game plan, and O'Connor never once shook him off." Schneider called a good game and the Nationals won, and O'Connor is now 1-1. ESPN.com recap of the game with box score and play by play.
Up Next:

The Nationals spilt the two game series with the Mets and will now host two games with the Florida Marlins (who currently reside in the NL East cellar). After those two games, the Nationals host the Pittsburgh Pirates for three games and then take off on the road for another series against the Reds.
9-18 Nationals will have 2-2 Tony Armas, with his 2.76 era face off against the visiting Florida team, with it's 6-18 record, and specificially against 0-3 Brian Moehler (4 GS, first start was just 2 innings long), and his 9.82 era.

So far the Nationals are ahead in wins when facing the Marlins, with a record of 2-1 this season. The Marlins won the first contest of this season on April 14, and the Nationals won the next two games. All three games at Florida.
Future Probable Starters:
Thursday: Livan Hernandez (1-3, 5.49) vs. Josh Johnson (1-2, 3.86)
Friday: Zach Day (1-3, 9.82) vs. LHP Oliver Perez (1-4, 7.53)
Saturday: Ramon Ortiz (0-3, 5.65) vs. Victor Santos (1-4, 5.06)
Sunday: Rookie LHP Michael O'Connor (1-1, 0.75) vs. LHP Zach Duke (2-2, 3.46)

Tuesday, May 02, 2006


New Owner by Next Year, eh?

Well this certainly is fun, eh? I mentioned a while ago that my blogging, or more accurately my lack of blogging, was a direct result of the team not having an owner. If I'm reading things correctly, at some point the leading bidders came down to three separate groups: 1) The group lead by Bethesda developer Theodore N. Lerner (which MLB seems to like, but for lack of diversity, since "resolved"), 2) group led by D.C. businessmen Fred Malek and Jeffrey Zients, and 3) a Indianapolis conglomerate (what, setting up a relocation, already?) (Washington Post story). Well, as probably noticed and noted, there was some talk recently about the potential new owner of the team. Apparently Lerner's rivals have annoyed the MLB decision maker in the matter, Commissioner Bud Selig. Both groups had pressure groups pressuring the MLB to pick their groups. As the Washington Post article notes: "he [Selig] has virtually ruled out Lerner's two main rivals" because of this unwanted pressure. Part of the pressure invovled a news conference being held by DC Council Members Marion Barry and Vincent B. Orange, Sr, to announce that they think Lerner and family are just "renting blacks" (as the Post article said they said) to acquire the team.

"We can't have blacks being rented for a day," Barry said. "We want real participation. We need to do better than [teams] have done around the country.

"If you name the Lerners, you're five steps backward and five years backward."

Well, back to hiding from my readers. Read more about the story throughout the Nats blogging world, and at the Washington Post article previously linked above. Oh, and the Nationals are currently in fourth place with a record of 8-18 and currently use the services of Zach Day (remember him?) and Michael O'Connor (from AAA) as two of their starters. Armas with his past injury problems is still out there, but for how long? Starting Pitchers Dresse (keeps reinjuring self), Lawrence and Patterson are currently injured and on either the 15 or 60 day DL.

Pretty disappointing season so far, though as has been noted by some, maybe the team is playing last year's season in reverse and they will be great in the second half. Of course, that would still lead to a 81-81 .500 season.

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