Thursday, April 15, 2010

Natty Nuggets

Take a step back. 4-5, despite a brutal schedule. Fourth place. Feels damn good doesn't it?

This has been a Danny Cabrera season so far. Remember how brutal watching him was? He 'only' had a 5.85 ERA. While that sucks by the standards of anyone, it's not any worse than any of about 100 pitchers the Nats had. But if you watched each of his pitches, you wanted him gone.

That's exactly how this season. If you've watched the games, you think we're the worst goddamn team on earth. Yet here we are. 4-5. Huh. Maybe there's something to this season?

* I've been kicking around a post just like this for a while. But I didn't write it, so read this.

* Another post I've been meaning to write is the fatal flaw with Rizzo's pitch-to-contact philosophy. And how you can't build a starting rotation for the long-term with a staff of John Lannans. But I'll have to get to that another time.

* Hey, how 'bout that Matt Capps! What's his WHIP, 49.85?

* He's better than Brian Bruney though.

* I don't really have a problem with some of their roster moves. Not DLing Zimmerman, for example, makes sense. (And I thought that even before today's homer!) You can't just throw a guy on the DL for the hell of it. Where it creates problems isn't so much in the short bench, but in that you're turning to mediocrities like Al Gonzalez to fill in.

* The bench on this team is utter shit. Even when everyone's healthy, it's pathetic. That's going to cost us a game or three in the standings, I'd bet. Of course that's also a function of having to carry a 18-man bullpen.

* A few bloggers got media credentials from the team. Good for them, I guess. But here's my question: why do they need them? Other than "because we can." Mostly, I think the coverage we'll get from them will be more noise, demonstrating the importance (or at least need) for filters.

I always thought the 'value-added' approach to blogging was worthless. And, to some degree, I still do. I write not because I expect others to read it, but for fun. But at a certain point, when you're extracting items of value from the team, it becomes quasi-professional -- even if we're all a bunch of hacks. And if that's the case, what are any of these guys going to do that's interesting or different than what everyone else is writing? Copying and pasting a press release, for example, shouldn't cut it anymore.

Honestly, I don't really see why anyone should get a credential. The only Nats blog out there who can really even make a legitimate argument for needing one is NFA. And even then, from what I know of Brian, I'm not sure how often he'd really use it. The rest of us, by and large, are parasites.

Now the team's obviously viewing that as more of a symbiotic relationship: they throw some cookies, and the public laps up what bloggers poop up. There's certainly some PR value for them. But it's also a bit of an echo chamber. Although we all bitch about the level of coverage the team gets in the Post, this isn't like the Caps were a few years ago, completely starved for coverage.

So what's the point? How does it benefit the team? How does it benefit the reader? We do know it benefits some egos. And as long as those occasionally get stroked, we're all happy.

* Just noticed that this fine gentleman (note: he is neither fine, nor a gentleman) said some similar things.

* Manny Acta is the standard by which all bad managers measure themselves.


  • If anybody doesn't think the Lerners and StanK have a plan, they're terribly mistaken. They have one, and it's working like a charm. This team made $33.5 million operating profit last year, third-highest in baseball. The plan is to spend as little as possible (see Aaron Crow, 2008, and Scott Olsen, 2010, for examples) while milking as much revenue as possible from the big-market prices they charge (see your ticket stub, for examples). These people make the robber barons look like Gandhi. And as StanK himself would say: "It's really as simple as that."

    By Anonymous Sunshine_Bobby_Carpenter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_for_Me, at 4/16/2010 12:39 AM  

  • Seems like those who filled the void while you were away have really filled your void.

    By Anonymous Gus, at 4/16/2010 4:46 AM  

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