Time for some housework.
- Yuda has today's game chat.
- Brad Wilkerson missed yesterday's game with hand problems. Apparently, they're related to the forearm problems he's been having; he claims it's a result of the adjustments he's been making.
- Bowden says he can increase the payroll via a trade, noting they're already $3MM under budget, and revenues are higher than expected.
One problem... who's out there who'd actually be an upgrade, and what do we have of value that someone would actually want? That's the tricky question!
- As I expected, Claudio Vargas was claimed on waivers by someone. Enjoy Arizona, Claudio, but good luck in that ballpark with your homer-prone ways. The Nationals get nothing in return, which seems like a waste. Oh well.
- It's increasingly likely that the Nats are going to take Ryan Zimmerman with the fourth pick in the draft. Zimmerman is a gold-glove third baseman with line-drive power. He won't hit 40 homers, but 20 homers and 30 doubles is probably pretty obtainable.
He may not have as huge an upside as some of the other players, but he's also a much surer bet.
Although, Bowden (starting up in full PT Bowden promotion mode) claims he has the glove of Brooks Robinson and the power of Troy Glaus. (Not to mention the motivational skills of Tony Robins, the dashing good looks of Cary Grant, the compassion of Mother Theresa, and Max Plancks physics ability.)
Think of Jeff Cirillo (back when he was good) or Cory Koskie. While not superstars, you need those kinds of players to win.
- Bowden has also said that he'll use the money they would've spent on the second and third round picks (which they lost for signing Vinny Castilla and Cristian Guzman) to sign some Latin American players. They're not subject to the draft.
Hopefully this is where Jose Rijo can use his influence.
- If I'm not mistaken, I think I saw Barry Larkin in the dugout yesterday. Please, PLEASE tell me he's been taking grounders!
- D'Angelo Jimenez cleared waivers, and is now playing in the minors. It shouldn't take too much to pry him from the Reds.
The more I read, the less I want him though. I'm not a big chemistry guy, but he's apparently started fights in the clubhouse. That won't work.
- Despite being rebuffed by the DC CFO, and the rest of the council, Linda Cropp still wants to press ahead with private financing.
Initially, I thought the private financing (which will cost the city more in the long run) was just her ploy of looking good and protective of the economically uneducated portion of the Anti-Stadium crowd. With her continued push of it, I'm starting to think that she might be one of Joe Sheehan's economically illiterate bitches.
She also reveals that she's delusional: "She noted that as a result of the push to reduce the public investment in the stadium, the gross receipts tax was lowered significantly last fall from the mayor's initial plan."
My memory could be wrong, but wasn't the reason the gross receipts tax lowered because they figured out they could charge the Federal government an increased amount? It wasn't your work madam chair!
- Ryan Church was named Rookie of the Month. (Despite Frank's repeated attempts to bury him on the bench!) Did the Nationals do anything before the game to honor him? That's one thing a team like the Orioles do really well. They make sure everyone knows about these awards and promote the hell out of them when their players win or are in contention. Most fans eat that crap up.
- Aramark came under scrutiny this week for the piss-poor job of concessions.
I'll say this in their defense (and this'll be the last time I'll every defend that shitty company). The setup of the stadium seems like it makes it exceedingly difficult from a logistical standpoint. I can see how it'd be difficult to keep all these stands fully stocked given the number of them, and how far spread out they are. A newer stadium, like Camden Yards, at least has all sorts of stock rooms behind the concession stands, built right into the structure of the building. Here, many of the hot dog stands are islands, surrounded by nothing. And with the crowds in the narrow concourses, restocking can't be easy.
- As you've undoubtedly read, George Soros has been added to one of the ownership groups. I'll stay out of the politics of it, other than to say that whatever group added him is not all that savvy.
The team with the deepest pockets rarely gets the most money. It's about connections and being a part of the elite club that is MLB ownership. There's no way that that chummy club would let someone so divisive inside, especially when many of them are probably still friends with a certain owner-turned President.
I hope (and know) that that group doesn't get it simply because of how clueless they appear to be.
- And for those of you that care, the Post had a good summary of the various ownership groups.
I don't really care. There's no way of knowing how these groups will act until they're in place. (Although, I DO know I don't want Jeff Smulyan's group!)