Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Since He Asked...

Barry Svrluga has officially turned into a blogger, as the latest entry at Svrlblg resorts to the blogger's favorite trick: pointless lists of stats. Well played, old man!

This one's actually interesting, and is something that I was going to do. But since he's done the heavy lifting, I'll point you in his direction. "What's it?" you ask. Just a listing of what some of our favorite former Nats are doing -- or in most cases, not doing.

Of the scrubs we've given up, only Claudio Vargas (OPTIONS!!!), Hector Carrasco, Ramon Ortiz (!?!?!) and Livan Hernandez are pitching well. On the other side of the ball, only Brendan Harris, Royce Clayton (!?) and Endy Chavez -- who had the game-winner for the Mets tonight -- are doing anything with the bat. "Future star" Terrmell Sledge has stunk up the park, and apparently lost his job to Jose Cruz, Jr, who's working on his 42nd professional team.

At any rate, it's an interesting enough exercise, but Svrlgblg goes the extra distance and asks its readers these questions:
1. Who is the former National you miss the most?
2. Who is the National acquired in a trade or free agency who you most like?
3. What deal would you most like to see undone?

1) Probably Livan, especially given the team's needs. At the very least, it'd be nice to have a pitcher who could do something with the bat.

Jamey Carroll is a popular answer in his comments, and I certainly loved the guy, but let's face it; he wasn't that good. He'd have been more useful than the execrable Damien Jackson last year, but his sale to the Rockies didn't really mean a damn bit of difference to last year's bottom line.

2) Most like? I'm allowed to like players? Hmmm... Nick Johnson's my favorite player, and he was acquired via trade, but he probably doesn't count! Of the current healthy guys, the one I enjoy watching the most is Austin Kearns, because he does lots of small things -- along the lines of hustling -- that individually don't win games, but add up over the course of a season.

3) I'd love to replay '05 with Tomo Ohka lasting the year. I still wonder what the complete breakdown in the pitching rotation and the reliance on a four-man rotation for the final month did to John Patterson. Would things be different if he hadn't had to throw so many innings? (Over those final five starts, he pitched to a 6.68 ERA, after having a 2.44 to that point)

It'd also be interesting to go back and undo the Soriano trade -- not because I think it was bad, but because I'd be interested to see 1) how it would have impacted our expectations going into this season and 2) what the Nats would've done with the $10 million they had budgeted for him -- remember that they were supposedly (wink, wink) in the competition for AJ Burnett in that offseason. What other tricks would Bowden have pulled off?

What about you guys? Either chip 'em here, or throw them over there where someone'll read your comments, think they're brilliant, and offer you a job with a professional sports team.


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