Saturday, September 15, 2007

It's Only Fair

...that when the old professor dons the navy blue blazer with the brass buttons -- the ones with the little tiny anchors pressed into the surface -- descends from his Chesapeake Bayside mansion and has his driver bring him to a game turning, not north at the I-97 split, but continuing on Rt. 50 all the way towards the city whose name adorns the masthead of the prestigious publication for which he writes, to turn in a column about said city's rare-do-well baseball team, that I give appropriate credit.

So, good job, Boz.

Since I am who I am, despite my mother's best efforts, one quibble. You say, "In spring training, many experts predicted that the Nats in September might be on pace to break the all-time record of 120 defeats."

Who were these "many experts"? The only people who talked about that regularly were the anonymous members of the team's own front office -- conveniently learning how to manage expectations; lucky Manny! -- and a group of nebulous scouts identified by (but usually attributed directly to) Buster Olney. That doesn't seem like many to me.

  • Sad news, fellow fanboys. With yesterday's excruciating loss (Cordero blows!!111!! Kill him!1!!1 1 Trade him to Baltimore!!11!), the Nationals have now been eliminated from playoff contention. :(

    So go ahead and make those reservations from a front-row seat at the dog track in October. Go ahead and get that Cubs hat down off the top shelf of your closet. The rest of this team's games are pure exhibition, completely meaningless for us. Alas. :(

  • 17 Comments:

    • The thing with Cordero is, we only seem to notice when he's blown a save. Then everybody's like, trade him!! (even though i know you're kidding Chris-aren't you?) We don't notice when he does what he's supposed to do, which is actually save the game. People think finder a good closer is an easy task. Just plug somebody in there and be done with it. *sigh*

      I do have to agree with Boz on this one though, Needham. It seemed before the season began as though everywhere you went and everything you read on teh internets predicted nothing less than a historically bad season for the Nats-i can't remember not reading a Nats preview without it somehow mentioning either 100++ losses or "historically bad".

      That being said, at this point i'd bet the farm that Boz is on Teddy's payroll.

      By Anonymous Natzzzzzz, at 9/15/2007 10:28 AM  

    • The Lerners are too cheap to ever hire the likes of Boswell. Don't you know that by now?

      "The only people who talked about that regularly were the anonymous members of the team's own front office -- conveniently learning how to manage expectations; lucky Manny! -- and a group of nebulous scouts identified by (but usually attributed directly to) Buster Olney."

      Okay, so the only people in the Nationals front office who ever said anything about "historically bad" were quoted anonymously. Which means that maybe they were misquoted, maybe they said it jokingly, maybe they were making drunken small talk at a party, or maybe they never said it at all. Yet this hasn't stopped legions of malcontents from proclaiming all season long that the Lerners announced publicly and loudly before the season that they were going to field a historically bad team this year, and who cares if a few fands get screwed along the way. Where's any verbatim quote from the Lerners or anyone else in the Nats employ going on record by name to say this? The only Lerner quote I've ever seen was to the tune of "Well, we're not thinking World Series this year." A far cry from what many in the blogosphere and in the press have been accusing them of all season long, wouldn't you say?

      By Blogger An Briosca Mor, at 9/15/2007 11:08 AM  

    • Yet this hasn't stopped legions of malcontents from proclaiming all season long that the Lerners announced publicly and loudly before the season that they were going to field a historically bad team this yea

      Since there were legions, you can probably provide a link to just one, right?

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 9/15/2007 11:11 AM  

    • Best column evar. T-Boz just ethered all baseball 'tism-haters including:
      Simmons: "going ABSOLUTELY NOWHERE"
      http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=simmons/070810
      Matt Becker: http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/preview?gid=270802120
      NY Post blogger: http://blogs.nypost.com/sports/st/archives/2007/03/day_39_beating.html
      Eric Kay: http://cbs.sportsline.com/spin/story/10230805
      Linton friggin Weeks: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/05/07/AR2007050701636.html
      Srvluga (sorta): http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/04/01/AR2007040100835.html
      Srvluga II: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/04/08/AR2007040800573.html

      Just championing the cause baby.

      By Blogger Bobtimist Prime, at 9/15/2007 11:31 AM  

    • How many links is that? There's one valid one, the Joel Sherman one, but he writes for the NY Post, so that hardly counts. ;)

      I suppose the Linton Weeks one counts too, because it cites someone from the Rochester Bugle-Times-Courier paper (in Bumblefuck, PA, I believe). But if hack sportswriters in dumpy cowtowns (especially cowtowns that've been subjected to 50 years of Orioles minor leagues...)count...

      As far as the Svrluga thing, God love ya and your optimism, but I'd suggest you actually read those and think about the differences between fact and opinion!

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 9/15/2007 11:39 AM  

    • "Since there were legions, you can probably provide a link to just one, right?"

      Well, no, I don't have time right now to go back through all of Svrluga's chats and blog entries, all the other comments on all the Nats blogs, all the press, etc, since the season began in order to fish them out. I'm going to the game tonight, and the special STH events beforehand. But these comments have been there all season long. Maybe not legions of them (have you ever heard of hyperbole?), but they're there.

      And BTW, I'm not accusing you of being part of this. Sorry if I may have given that impression with my previous comment.

      By Blogger An Briosca Mor, at 9/15/2007 11:41 AM  

    • 'tism is a factinion

      By Blogger Bobtimist Prime, at 9/15/2007 11:47 AM  

    • Is it really odd or is it just accurate or pointing out the obvious that people would describe a bad team as, well, bad or that the team has a lousy starting pitching staff when it is lousy?

      Here's some news about another favorite whipping boy from the Post:

      Washington Nationals right-hander John Patterson had surgery to decompress the radial nerve in his right arm yesterday, and General Manager Jim Bowden said the club's goal is to get Patterson back on the mound by November and perhaps have him pitch in winter ball in an effort to make up for the innings he lost during a season limited to seven starts because of the arm problems.

      "It went very well," Bowden said. "There were a lot of veins that were wrapped around that nerve. . . . We're very excited about the surgery and the outlook looks good. Clearly, there was a major problem that had to be resolved."

      It sure sounds like PT has plans to have Patterson hang around to pitch next year rather than cutting him loose.

      By Anonymous Tulsa Fan, at 9/15/2007 12:15 PM  

    • Yeah, it does sound like that.

      For $1.5 million (probably the most he'd make in arbitration), it probably makes sense to bring him back next year given his potential.

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 9/15/2007 12:16 PM  

    • I find the comments about the Lerners being cheap offensive. Needham, you encourage this small minded crap and it detracts from the more thoughtful content that is often here.

      By Blogger Tofu Dog, at 9/15/2007 12:19 PM  

    • Lerners being cheap? are you posting on the wrong thread? ;)

      By Blogger Chris Needham, at 9/15/2007 12:22 PM  

    • "Lerners being cheap? are you posting on the wrong thread? ;)"

      No, he's probably reacting to my first comment up above, and just showing that he doesn't get jokes.

      And I suppose that since I've engaged in a good bit of Boswell bashing myself this year, I should probably give him his props for not only writing a Nationals column, but also for not mentioning the Orioles in it even once. Or parking, for that matter. I wonder what his beverage of choice was when writing this one. I'd like to send him a case of it.

      But there was at least this one cheap shot from him this morning: "If you search, you might find the one food court with edible fare." I've found at least three places with edible fare in RFK this year. And my search has only encompassed 18 games so far.

      By Blogger An Briosca Mor, at 9/15/2007 1:25 PM  

    • Clearly the team should have applied the same low expectations for food service at the stadium that was applied to the team’s chances of winning . Maybe they should have leaked that they expected thousands of patrons to be hospitalized with food poisoning after consuming RFK “food”. That way when you only end up having the runs and vomiting for 3 days, but didn’t have to go to the hospital, you still feel like you made out like a bandit and had a great customer experience.

      By Anonymous Tulsa Fan, at 9/15/2007 3:05 PM  

    • The 35,000 fans who don't show up for games are wise to the low expectations game. Those of us who still do go rejoice in only a 90 loss season.

      On the bright side, at least there's no good reason to stay awake for 13 inning games!

      By Anonymous Ed, at 9/15/2007 3:32 PM  

    • I love Boswell, but every column he's written about the Nationals has been of the Cheerleader variety.

      How about some thoughts on the Kearns/FLop disaster? Or Wily Mo and his adventures in Left Field (shades of Preston Wilson in Center) or Flores v. Schneider or the pitching situation, or just Cordero?

      Some original insight that only a guy with his access could garner would be nice.

      By Anonymous Sec 515, at 9/15/2007 3:55 PM  

    • "Some original insight that only a guy with his access could garner would be nice."

      Well, that would require him to go to Nats games more than every once in a while, watch them on TV when he's not there, and pay attention to what's going on with the team. He only puts out that kind of effort for the Orioles.

      Ever notice how in his blog and chats that Svrluga will say "Boz is in the house tonight"? Ever notice how rarely he actually says that? Put two and two together, and you'll see why Boz only phones in whatever he writes about the Nats as a team. He knows more about what's going on with parking at the new stadium than he does about what's happening on the field and in the clubhouse at RFK. And that's just because he's afraid he might not get a good parking spot down at the Navy Yard.

      By Blogger An Briosca Mor, at 9/15/2007 11:36 PM  

    • By Blogger Sneakers hobbies, at 10/25/2009 8:23 PM  

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